I tested this $800 HP Chromebook for a month: 3 things I love and hate about it

With the $800 HP Chromebook Plus x360 14c, you need to mood your expectations.

If you are anticipating efficiency so quick you get whiplash, audio so crisp you’ll be able to virtually chew into the sound waves, and a show that may be described as “visible sweet,” this laptop computer ain’t for you.

However, in case you’re in search of a simplistic Chromebook for light-weight workloads, together with juggling between Google’s number of apps (e.g., Gmail, YouTube, Meet, Calendar, Docs, and many others.), the HP Chromebook x360 14c could also be simply sufficient for your workflow wants.

Still, earlier than you snatch this Chromebook up, there are some things you need to know.

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HP Chromebook Plus x360 14c worth

You can snag this laptop computer by way of HP’s official web site. It’s acquired a beginning worth of $789 and comes with the next specs:

The configuration I tested has 256GB of SSD storage, which provides $30 to the value (i.e., $819).

What I like about the HP Chromebook Plus x360 14c

“HP Chromebook Plus x360 14c” is a mouthful to say, however does the weightiness on the tongue match the worth it brings at a price ticket of $800? In some methods, sure. Let’s begin with the positives.

Solid, premium-esque construct

At a fast look, the HP Chromebook Plus x360 14c appears to be like a lot just like the HP Spectre x360 14, a laptop computer that has a worth that hovers round $2,000.

The HP Chromebook Plus x360 14c appears to be like pricier than it is.
Credit: Kimberly Gedeon / Mashable

From the twin audio system that flank the keyboard to the strong, aluminum grey chassis, this laptop computer appears to be like like it value greater than $800. I wiggled the lid to check its sturdiness, and luckily, there was little to no give.

However, it’s value noting that the chassis is vulnerable to scratches, and it’s fairly the fingerprint magnet.

As the title hints, the HP Chromebook Plus x360 14c has 360-degree twin hinges, permitting the laptop computer to rework into a number of completely different modes, together with pill mode and tent mode.

"Among Us" on HP Chromebook Plus x360 14c

Tablet mode was nice for enjoying “Among Us.”
Credit: Kimberly Gedeon / Mashable

Tablet mode was my favourite, notably for enjoying a few of my favourite Google Play video games, together with Among Us, Sniper 3D, and Temple Run 2.

Fantastic keyboard

Take it from me as a keyboard snob — the Chromebook Plus x360 14c’s keycaps are shockingly clicky. I’m shocked, as a result of keyboards in this worth vary are usually unimpressive and really feel very low-grade. However, the white-backlit keyboard on the Chromebook Plus x360 14c is clicky, bouncy, and delivers wonderful tactile suggestions.

HP Chromebook Plus x360 14c on a sofa arm

It comes with a pleasingly clicky keyboard.
Credit: Kimberly Gedeon / Mashable

I should not be too greatly surprised, as a result of HP is understood for main the cost within the laptop computer keyboard sport. (I actually gushed about the keyboard on the HP Spectre x360 14.)

The touchpad provides the cherry on prime to the keyboard expertise. It’s broad and spacious. Plus, it’s easy sufficient on my fingertips for seamless navigation, however delivers sufficient friction for zippy clicks.

Great number of ports

The HP Chromebook Plus x360 14c is not stingy when it involves ports. On the suitable aspect, I noticed a USB-A port, a headset jack, and a USB-C port.

The lid of the HP Chromebook Plus x360 14c

There’s no scarcity of ports.
Credit: Kimberly Gedeon / Mashable

Giving a nod to creators, there’s additionally a microSD card slot, permitting you to rapidly switch information out of your digicam. You can even use it to broaden your storage.

On the left aspect, you may discover one other USB-C port, a energy button, a quantity rocker, and a webcam kill swap (which helps you to rapidly deactivate the webcam).

What’s “eh” about the HP Chromebook Plus x360 14c

There are some facets about the HP Chromebook Plus x360 14c that I do not love, however contemplating its reasonably priced price ticket, I’m keen to let these slide.

Not for show snobs

If you care about crisp, vivid, sharp shows, I hope you are not placing the Chromebook Plus x360 14c in your buying listing.

HP Chromebook Plus x360 14c on a sofa

The show is simply high quality.
Credit: Kimberly Gedeon / Mashable

The 14-inch, 1920 x 1200-pixel show is okay in that it does the job, however it will not win any awards.

Not zippy, however that is anticipated

As you may uncover within the Geekbench part, which exams for processor efficiency, the HP Chromebook Plus x360 14c is not a efficiency powerhouse by any stretch of the creativeness. After all, it sports activities a processor that’s out of date by two generations (it has a Twelfth-gen Intel CPU; we’re within the 14th-gen period).

HP Chromebook Plus x360 14c on a desk

It’s not a efficiency powerhouse.
Credit: Kimberly Gedeon / Mashable

However, as I talked about on the outset, the HP Chromebook Plus x360 14c is not designed for energy customers, however it is enough sufficient for the common school-focused client or a employee bee with light-to-medium workloads.

Not “skinny and mild”

Don’t anticipate the HP Chromebook Plus x360 14c to be as mild as a feather.

HP Chromebook Plus x360 14c half-opened

It weighs in at 3.34 kilos.
Credit: Kimberly Gedeon / Mashable

It weighs 3.34 kilos, which is fairly normal for a laptop computer. However, in case you’re anticipating one thing svelte, mild, and glossy that does not make a lot of a dent in weight for your journey bag, the Chromebook Plus x360 14c is not for you.

What I dislike about the HP Chromebook Plus x360 14c

When I tested the HP Chromebook Plus x360 14c inside Mashable’s workplaces, there have been some things I observed that will irk some shoppers.

Dim show

If your desk is located subsequent to a vibrant window otherwise you plan to make use of the HP Chromebook Plus x360 14c outdoors, you could discover that the show is troublesome to see. Why? It’s too dim.

HP Chromebook Plus x360 14c on a sofa

The HP Chromebook Plus x360 14c may very well be brighter.
Credit: Kimberly Gedeon / Mashable

Sitting subsequent to a window with solar rays seeping by way of, I discovered myself squinting to see sure particulars on the show. However, in the suitable lighting, the show is suitable.

Lackluster energy effectivity

I prefer to see at least 9 hours of battery life on a Chromebook.

(*3*)

You’ll get not fairly 9 hours of battery life.
Credit: Kimberly Gedeon / Mashable

According to my expertise testing Chromebooks, the common one lasts someplace between 9 and 10 hours. However, within the battery life part, you may discover that this one missed the 9-hour mark by a hair.

Webcam is “meh”

I’m not a fan of the webcam on the HP Chromebook Plus x360 14c. I’ve at all times ragged on the laptop computer business for rolling out blurry 720p and 1080p webcams. However, at first, I held my tongue with this Chromebook as a result of it sports activities a 5MP shooter.

HP Chromebook Plus x360 14c

The webcam is simply OK.
Credit: Kimberly Gedeon / Mashable

Unfortunately, I would not have guessed the webcam on the HP Chromebook Plus x360 14c was something greater than 1080p. It’s fairly noisy and low-res, however on the plus aspect, it renders colours fairly properly. For instance, it precisely captured my brown complexion.

HP Chromebook Plus x360 14c battery life

We ran the CrXPRT 2 battery check on the HP Chromebook Plus x360 14c with the show at max brightness. It lasted 8 hours and 54 minutes. This is not half dangerous, however it missed my most well-liked 9-hour mark by a tiny margin.

HP Chromebook Plus x360 14c in tent mode

360-degree twin hinges enable for varied modes, like pill mode and tent mode.
Credit: Kimberly Gedeon / Mashable

Fortunately, the HP Chromebook Plus x360 14c ought to survive a typical eight-hour college or work day on a single cost.

HP Chromebook Plus x360 14c Geekbench rating

We ran Geekbench 6, which exams for processor prowess, on the Chromebook Plus x360 14c. It delivered a multi-core rating of 4,318, which is not all that spectacular.

The Microsoft Surface Laptop Go 3 has a higher rating of 6,043 and is inside the identical worth vary because the Chromebook Plus x360 14c (in case you do not thoughts grabbing Windows as an alternative of ChromeOS).

Final ideas

It’s additionally value noting that the Chromebook Plus x360 14c helps stylus enter. HP does not embrace a pen within the field; nonetheless, you should utilize any Universal Stylus Initiative (USI) pen available on the market — like this one from HP.

To sum it all up, you could not care for the Chromebook Plus x360 14c’s dim show and potato webcam. But its sturdy aluminum chassis, versatile postures (e.g., pill and tent modes), wide selection of ports, and implausible keyboard might depart you hooked.

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