Acer chromebook spin 311 price

Acer chromebook spin 311 price DEFAULT

Two-minute review

The Acer Chromebook Spin 311 is more than just a great little Chromebook. Showcasing impressive levels of versatility as well as satisfying interaction and usability, it’s among the best Chromebooks 2021 has to offer, even if it originally came out in 2020.

Sleek and subtle in its design while sticking to unobtrusive black, the Acer Chromebook Spin 311 might just be the Chromebook you’d like on you whether you’re going to a work meeting or attending a college course. The diamond-shaped pattern detailing on the back of the screen is a nice touch, too. 

Embedded into the black chassis, the keyboard and touchpad are as easy as ever to use on a Chromebook. Satisfying and punchy, with pleasing clicks and actuation, even typing and other menial tasks is satisfying. 

However, the keyboard, despite being the same size as on other Acer Chromebooks does feel a bit small - due to its place in a smaller design. We did get used to this more cramped design in time, but it did take us a little while.

The screen is pretty good, though a bit of a double-edged sword. On the one hand it is a clear, and easy-to-use touchscreen, and tough - being well protected by the Gorilla glass; but on the other it is a bit too small and also a bit too dim. 

It's also surrounded by very thick bezels, which feels like a lot of wasted space. The design may have required the large bezels in order to incorporate the toughened glass touchscreen and overall robust design, but it feels like a bit too much potential screen real estate has been lost. 

Overall the Acer Chromebook Spin 311's design might make it feel a bit small for some users - a laptop replacement this is not - but if you want something inexpensive that is going to survive the occasional bash and knock, then this Chromebook is definitely one to consider.

Despite having a modest component set under the hood, the Acer Chromebook Spin 311 always handles whatever is thrown at it. Having far too many chrome tabs open, running and listening to YouTube - or Spotify - and messaging on apps all at the same time never reveals any stuttering or trouble that the AMD-based hardware, supported by 4GB of RAM, can't cope with. Underrated and understated in performance, it's a consistent little workhorse of a Chromebook.

As a result, all in, the Acer Chromebook Spin 311 is a great machine: it offers good value; it's very fun and versatile; and you can do anything on it that you can other, more powerful Chromebooks. If you like the size and want a reliable Chromebook with a touchscreen, this is it.  

Spec Sheet

CPU: AMD A4-9120C processor Dual-core 1.60 GHz
Graphics: AMD Radeon R4 Graphics
RAM: 4 GB, DDR4 SDRAM
Screen: 11.6-inch (29.5cm); HD (1366 x 768); 16:9; IPS
Storage: 32GB Flash Memory
Optical drive: No
Ports: 2 x USB-A; 2 x USB-C; 1 x microSD
Connectivity: Wireless IEEE 802.11ac; Bluetooth 4.1
Camera: HD webcam
Weight: 3.3 pounds (1.5 kg)
Size: 11.7 x 8.1 x 0.92 inches (29.6 x 20.6 x 2.35 cm; W x D x H)

Price and availability

Compared in relation to the Acer Chromebook 314, which was released around the same time, the Acer Chromebook Spin 311's price of $330 (£280; about AU$490) is a little eyebrow raising.

A smaller model with lesser battery life and level of performance, but for more money? It doesn't add up...at first. However, its differences in design, build, use and what it actually offers probably justify it. 

And for a versatile 2-in-1 Chromebook at the lower-mid end of the price spectrum - a premium Google Pixelbook this is absolutely not - this is reasonable price territory. Throw in a sale and it's almost impulse-purchase worthy.

It'll be readily available from the usual retailers, however, in reality, it looks like the to-customer price in Australia is far higher than the conversion of the US or UK prices. One price on Amazon AU is safely above $700, for example. Hopefully availability in Australia will increase further, and prices will gradually decrease too.

Design

The Acer Chromebook Spin 311 really is a compact little machine, and its design, build and aesthetic complements its size enormously. Firstly, it's a symphony in black; blacks on the back, on the keyboard and surrounding the screen. But this makes the whole aesthetic cohesive and attractive for a little Chromebook. 

The main body of the Acer Chromebook Spin 311 is the similar matte black material but the 'top' or back of the screen has a very cool diamond-print panel. This feels like it could be for added durability to protect the screen but aesthetically it really works too, adding texture and a fun quirk to the design. 

Overall, though, the shell feels sturdy and solid, reassuring for those looking for a durable Chromebook. The only very slight exception to this is a bit of noticeable give to the keyboard panel, particularly if you're a powerful typer. 

This contrasts that overall solidity and robustness the shell has. While the keyboard is the same size as the larger Acer Chromebook 314, the overall setting of it in a smaller chassis does make everything at least feel more cramped and so it isn't quite as comfortable as larger Chromebooks. 

The keyboard and touchpad are still satisfying to use and click clack your way around. The only concern here is that there is a bit of flex in the keyboard that shows itself if you're a heavy typer.

While the screen technically is that 11-inches in size from corner to corner, this is compromised by the enormously wide bezels. Presumably this is to help with protection - particularly in 'spin mode' - allowing the tough Gorilla glass to be securely fitted. 

There's also no fingerprint reader on the Acer Chromebook Spin 311 which would normally be a bit of a disappointment for a circa $300 / £300 machine, but due to the other quirks of the Acer Chromebook Spin 311's design, it's not really a fair criticism. But one to note nonetheless.

The on-board port situation is good considering its size. You get two USB-Cs (either can be used for charging), two USB-As, a microSD slot and an audio jack. Split roughly in two these are nicely spread along either side, one side sharing space with the power button, and the other side with the volume slider and the Kensington lock dock/hole. You'll be without an Ethernet port however, so it's a purely wireless Chromebook. Though, given its size, that's a fair compromise. 

Benchmarks

Here's how the Acer Chromebook 311 performed in our suite of benchmark tests:

JetStream2: 41.330 (higher is better)
JetStream 1.1: 65.275 (higher is better)
Mozilla Kraken 1.1 (lower is better): 3062.2ms
Sunspider: 595.3ms
Octane: 12895
Speedometer: 31.07
Battery Life (TechRadar movie test): 8 hours and 15 minutes

Performance

The first thing to notice when sitting down to use the Acer Chromebook Spin 311 is the very satisfying click and clack to the keyboard, and it's surprising just how pleasing typing could be on such a small machine. 

It's particularly nice that the touchpad is of the same ilk; easy, responsive and satisfying to use. However, that satisfaction is not matched by what is on screen, as we had to increase the brightness a fair chunk to see pictures more clearly. This inevitably came at the cost of battery life. 

The increase in brightness made the screen brighter, obviously, but only in the sense of it getting lighter and whiter; colors and contrasts doesn't follow suit, for example, so it is a bit tough on the eyes.

Utilising the spin mechanism of the Acer Chromebook Spin 311 to turn it from a laptop-like device to a tablet-like one is great fun, but also handy, particularly in combination with the touch screen.

You can go from using it like a normal laptop or notepad, to a purely browse and touch tablet-like machine on the sofa and then back again, seamlessly and with minimal effort. 

One cool but important note: when the screen is flipped all the way around to use just as a touchscreen, the keyboard is disabled so you accidentally type and smudge keys into odd google searches as you go. 

You can even use the spin mechanism in a variety of ways to enjoy having a device with you wherever you are like putting it into a tent position to watch Netflix.

The boot time of 12 seconds from off to log in screen is great, and means you can close the screen to go into sleep and then instantly starting up again by lifting the screen back up- it's a really smooth and speedy process.

Sometimes there is the tiniest bit of stuttering as it resyncs and loads up a Google account, docs, emails and so on, but this is negligible and certainly nowhere near a major detractor. 

Meanwhile, the benchmarks we ran prove its reliable and smooth, but doesn't provide a blistering performance. Once again, compare these to the bigger and beefier Acer Chromebook 314 and the difference is clear in terms of the data and numbers. Though to its credit, it doesn't feel much slower in the context of normal use and carrying out tasks such as using dozens of Chrome tabs, playing music and chatting on Slack. It uses its modest and middling hardware to run Chrome OS and apps very efficiently. 

Battery life

The battery life is pretty good with the Acer Chromebook 311, but without being truly outstanding for a Chromebook. 

Don't get us wrong, clocking it at more than 8 hours in our movie test is good going, and shows it'll safely last you a working day away from the office.

The charging via USB-C is very quick. and the Acer Chromebook 311 is fully charged from zero in two hours. Throwing this decent battery life in on top of everything else the Acer Chromebook Spin 311 offers, and it's a very tempting proposition.

If you want something with a bigger tank, the larger Acer Chromebook 314 might be a better choice, however.

Buy it if...

Don't buy it if...

Rob Dwiar is the Hardware Editor, GamesRadar+ at Future. He is an ambitious and enthusiastic games media writer and editor. Rob is also a freelance writer on videogames, gardens and landscapes.

Sours: https://www.techradar.com/reviews/acer-chromebook-spin-311

Acer Chromebook Spin 311 review: Brilliant for the basics

(Pocket-lint) - Chromebooks are not just for budget buyers anymore. Some cost four figures, are made of aluminium and magnesium, and have as much power as a high-end Windows laptop. 

But the best tech-per-pound Chromebooks are still affordable ones like this: the Acer Chromebook Spin 311. It's fine for the basics, just as you'd expect from a laptop at this price point.

Aside from one little build quality issue, there's little to dislike about the Acer Chromebook Spin 311. Its screen is good enough, performance scrapes by happily, and it's surprisingly fab as a little typing machine.

This is no marvel of modern technology, but is just the kind of low-cost laptop many people should consider.

Design

  • Dimensions: 296 x 206 x 23.50mm
  • Weight: 1.33kg
  • Plastic casing

We've learned to expect quite a bit from cheap Chromebooks, but not necessarily good looks. However, parts of the Acer Chromebook Spin 311 are really rather tasteful - more so than a lot of the pricier laptops Acer has made. 

Just look at the subtle two-tone keyboard and surrounds. Black on dark grey, with a friendly looking key font, and curves that tiptoe across that line between the serious and accessible: it all just works well. 

Pocket-lint

There's a big caveat, of course: the Acer Chromebook Spin 311 has huge screen surrounds. This is an 11.6-inch laptop with the footprint closer to a 13-inch one. So while we think the bottom half looks good, the top half is either going to come across as dated or cheap given those bezels. 

This is the main budget giveaway, because the Acer Chromebook Spin 311 doesn't have the fat raised surrounds of a true old-school laptop. Its screen is covered by a big sheet of Gorilla Glass. If this Chromebook had a 13-inch screen that filled out the top part, it would look fabulous. But then it probably wouldn't cost so little either.

All this praise about the Acer Chromebook Spin 311's look only applies to the inside. The lid is a style-free zone of textured plastic. But does that really matter?

The Spin 311 is a very portable little Chromebook, but may be a little heavier and thicker than you might expect. It weighs 1.33kg and is 23mm thick, similar in weight to a 13-inch ultraportable, but thicker. Acer estimates the weight at 1.5kg on its website, but it is actually substantially lighter based on our scales.

It feels reassuringly strong too, mostly thanks to the ultra-tough band of grey plastic that runs between the base and keyboard plate. These other parts aren't quite as thick and tough, but do offer flex-free typing.

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The Acer Chromebook Spin 311 has a 360-degree hinge, one of its main features, and this is also strong. It doesn't wobble if you type with the laptop in your lap, or flip back too easily when you pick it up.

There's only one significant issue with the Spin 311's construction. Lift it up by its side and the touchpad clicker stops clicking, because the flex of the case pushes it in. Dig a little deeper into what causes this and you'll find it's the flex of the underside. While annoying, the clicker doesn't suddenly stop working because you rest your wrist on the top. 

Keyboard and Touchpad

  • Non-backlit keyboard
  • Plastic touchpad 

It is no huge surprise that a cheap plastic laptop does not have immaculate build, but the Spin 311 is still a superb little laptop for typing and work. It's got a full-size keyboard; key definition is solid, and there's no sense of feeling cramped when typing - unlike the Microsoft Surface Go 2. 

There's none of the fancy stuff, of course: no keyboard backlight, no fingerprint scanner. However, the Spin 311 is a reminder the basics matter most, particularly if we're talking about writing a 3,000 word essay rather than flicking through Netflix for the 3,000th time. 

Pocket-lint

It does have one very neat feature, though. The Chromebook Spin 311 is based on designs originally intended for classrooms. Being able to take abuse is the currency of these laptops. As such, the keyboard has a reservoir that can hold a full can's worth of liquid without any spilling into the important insides. Don't test this with Coke, as sugary, sticky stuff is no friend to keyboards. But you can see where the liquid drains out on the underside. 

The touchpad is a similarly practical. It has a plastic surface, not a glass one like those of fancy Chromebooks. But it feels fairly similar to glass, is of a good size, and has a chunky clicker action with zero of the floaty feel we look to avoid when shopping for a work laptop.

Hybrid design and screen

  • 11.6-inch IPS LCD display
  • Gorilla Glass protection
  • 1136 x 768 resolution
  • 360-degree hinge

The Acer Chromebook Spin 311 is a hit for typing, but what about the fun stuff? Its 360-degree hinge gives it an edge over some other cheaper Chromebooks. You can fold the display all the way back so the lid meets the base.  

This is not a great tablet, but the hinge does make it far better for noodling around when in bed, or for use anywhere you really want an entertainment screen, not a laptop.

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The screen is fairly small - at 11.6-inches across - and fairly low-resolution. We'd love it to fill out the screen surround and be higher res. But at this price we can live with what we get here, because it once again provides a good basic level of quality. 

This is an IPS LCD, the same kind you might find on a phone or tablet. It doesn't start looking strange or ugly when viewed from the wrong angle - a common trait of much older Chromebooks. You'll still see this in a lot of cheap larger screen laptops with TN (twisted nematic) panels, too. They are the number one thing to avoid if you want a good-looking screen. 

We also tried using the Spin 311 outside in the sun to see how it managed, as cheap laptops are rarely that bright. You won't want to use this Chromebook out in the park to watch a movie, but we could easily see this review-in-progress while sat on the grass as the pins and needles started working up our legs. That you'll have to worry about your personal comfort more than this laptop's screen when working outdoors is a good result.

The Acer Chromebook Spin 311 has a touchscreen, an essential for any hybrid. But there's no smart stylus here.

Performance

  • AMD A4-9120C CPU, 4GB RAM
  • Radeon R4 graphics

The best part of the Acer Chromebook Spin 311's performance is how quick and easy it is to use. Head back to using it the day after starting a document and it comes out of sleep just about as quickly as an Android phone. There's none of that lag you get with a Windows laptop that has gone into a power-saving hibernation after being left doing nothing for a while. 

Basic performance is solid too - again better than you'd see from a Windows laptop with the same processor. Chrome OS is a pretty thin operating system, so there's less to slow down a low-powered computer when just pottering about doing simple stuff. 

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Websites load quickly as long as your internet connection is fast and there's no lag when you do something simple like write a document. 

Want more? Chromebooks can run Android apps, making every single one a (potential) great little entertainment machine. However, the Acer Chromebook Spin 311's performance is more patchy than an equivalent priced Android phone trying to run the same apps. 

This isn't just because the laptop has a fairly weak CPU. Android apps are run using a wrapper in Chrome OS, and don't always work all that well, regardless of the power on tap. 

We tried out a whole bunch of the most popular apps and games to see how the Acer Chromebook Spin 311 holds up. Results were mixed.

Hits include Gameloft's excellent racer Asphalt 8, Bloons TD 6, Dead Trigger 2, Alto's Adventure and Super Monkey Ball. They all work well, aside from some occasional slow-down in Bloons and Asphalt. 

Some others either don't work at all, or are too slow. Asphalt 9 often looks like a slide show, PUBG crashes constantly, Call of Duty: Mobile and ARK: Survival don't get past the logo screens before crashing, and Minecraft isn't even available on the Chrome OS Google Play store. These are the kinds of games many want to play, and there's also no version of Fortnite for Chrome OS either. 

What's the main difference between these winners and losers? If a game uses the kind of graphical techniques adopted in the last few years, there's a good chance it won't work well, or perhaps at all, on this Chromebook (or another Chromebook for that matter). 

However, the games that really struggle don't work particularly well on any Chromebook, price irrelevant. In the end, Chrome OS's patchy Android app support highlights why cheaper Chromebook's like this are a less problematic buy than the more expensive options. Their specs match Chrome OS's limits. 

Pocket-lint

We also tried some N64 and PS1 emulation on the Chromebook. Both work beautifully, with no obvious slow-down in the titles tried.

What are the specs? The Acer Chromebook Spin 311 has an AMD A4-9120C CPU, 4GB RAM and 32GB storage. It could do with more storage space, as we had to uninstall a bunch of games during testing, but 32GB is still the norm at the price. 

The AMD chipset is designed to use very little power, and is roughly the equivalent of an Intel Celeron N4000, which Acer used in the last version of the Spin 311. It has very little power, and would be a very compromised fit for a Windows laptop. However, it performs just fine in Chrome OS. 

AMD has a real benefit over the cheap Intel Celeron CPUs at the level too: the Radeon R4 graphics chipset is a lot more powerful than the UHD 600 rival from Intel. Both are total weaklings, of course, but the difference still means you can play more games more comfortably.

Best laptop 2021: Top general and premium notebooks for working from home and more
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The Acer Chromebook Spin 311's speakers are fair for a cheap Chromebook too, in that they are at least not a complete embarrassment. Two downward-facing drivers sit on the bottom. They provide next to zero bass and only conservative max volume, but do not distort in an ugly way at maximum volume or cause parts of the case to rattle. They'll do the trick for occasional YouTube and Netflix streaming. 

Battery life

  • Up to 10 hour battery life
  • USB-C charging
  • 4200mAh battery 

Acer says the Chromebook Spin 311 lasts 10 hours between charges. Laptop battery claims are usually works of fiction, but this one is at least not too far from the truth. 

Pocket-lint

Streaming YouTube at half brightness, the Spin 311 lasts eight hours and 20 minutes. You probably won't want to drop the brightness much lower than what we used for this test, but the battery should last slightly longer if you simply need to write documents. But who does that for eight hours straight? 

This laptop has USB-C charging, a neat modern twist that lets you recharge the laptop (slowly) with phone chargers.

There's good news for those who will mostly use the Spin 311 at home too. While it does not have an HDMI port, you can hook up a monitor or TV over USB-C via the DisplayPort standard.

You get plenty of connections: two USB-Cs, two oldie USB 3.0 ports, a microSD and headphone jack.  

Verdict

You have to wonder who some Chromebooks are designed for. Who really needs a hugely expensive Chrome OS laptop like the Google PixelBook, which looks and feels nice but can barely do anything with the power it has.

No such head-scratching is required with the Acer Chromebook Spin 311. This is a great buy for someone who needs a laptop but can't stretch to the asking price of an entry-level Intel Core i3 Windows laptop, let alone a four-figures or beyond for a high-end one. 

The 311 has a very good keyboard, the IPS screen looks pleasant enough (even with big borders and low resolution), and the flexi-hinge touch display lets it take on many of the non-portable jobs of a tablet. 

The Spin 311 isn't incredibly slim, can't run proper Windows apps, and a construction oversight affects the touchpad in one specific scenario. But it's in this price bracket that Chrome OS's particular appeals shine through, and this is a very good example of an affordable Chromebook.

Also consider

Pocket-lint

Microsoft Surface Go 2

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Out for an affordable hybrid? The Surface Go 2 is the next level up. Several aspects are far better. It has a lovely magnesium alloy case, a much better screen and an excellent webcam. However, add the Type Cover keyboard and  the price rises far, far higher than the Acer's. And after working with both all day we prefer the feel of the Acer's full-size keyboard.

Writing by Andrew Williams. Editing by Mike Lowe. Originally published on .

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Acer’s Spin 311 is exactly what many people expect of a Chromebook: Small, inexpensive, and capable enough to handle work and light play every day. For students, children, or anyone looking for an extremely portable machine that gets the essentials right, the Spin 311 is one of the best Chromebooks for kids that can also compete with some of the best Chromebooks of comparable price. It also won a recommendation for best budget laptop in our Tom's Guide Awards 2021.

It’s a highly functional unit with one of the best laptop keyboards I've seen yet. That said, I ran into some issues (and some strange design choices) while conducting this Acer Chromebook Spin 311 review. Although it’s a capable Chromebook around $300, it’s far from the only one.

Acer Chromebook Spin 311 specs

CPU: 2.0GHz octa-core MediaTek MT8183
Graphics: ARM Mali-G72 MP3
Display: 11.6 inches, 1366 x 768
Memory: 4GB
Storage: 32GB eMMC, 64GB eMMC
Size: 11.7 x 8.1 x 0.74 inches
Weight: 2.65 pounds
Ports: USB-C, USB-A
Wi-Fi: IEEE 802.11ac

Acer Chromebook Spin 311 review: Price and availability 

The Acer Chromebook Spin 311 released in July 2020 at a starting price of $259, though you can expect the price to rise into the $279 range if you choose a model with improved storage. You can buy it directly from Acer.com or seek it out at your retailer of choice.

For an 11.6-inch 2-in-1 Chromebook, a roughly $300 price tag is par for the course. Lenovo’s C330 is the same price, while the Asus C204 is slightly more expensive (if you can find one in stock). There are other 2-in-1 Chromebooks that opt for a tablet design over the clamshell design of the Spin 311 that are cheaper, namely the Lenovo Duet.  

 Acer Chromebook Spin 311 review: Design 

The Spin 311 looks like the platonic ideal of a Chromebook: Thick bezels around the screen, an all-aluminum silver chassis, and a build that’s meant to be both durable and portable. 

And the Spin 311 is successful on those last two. There’s no flex around any point of the body, including the keyboard and the hinges. The screen is protected with Gorilla Glass, too, so it should be able to withstand a few falls. 

For portability, the Spin 311 has an advertised weight of 2.65 pounds, but we measured only 2.3 pounds on our test unit. The difference between the two is splitting hairs; at this size and weight, the Spin 311 isn’t likely to strain your back.

Speaking of size, the Spin 311 is tiny, with a footprint smaller than a standard A4 sheet of paper. It’s just a hair thicker than the Samsung Chromebook 4 -- 0.74 inches compared to 0.66 inches.

The Spin 311 is tiny, and that’s as much of a pro as it is a con. It doesn’t really matter what you’re doing on the machine, it feels cramped. For carrying around or casually using at home, the Spin 311’s size isn’t too much of an issue. For heavy users, though, the limited space is at least annoying, and at most a deal-breaker. 

That’s a criticism of a Chromebook this size, not of the Spin 311 itself. The build quality is excellent, and although the aesthetics are uninspired, it still manages to look sleek and attractive. 

 Acer Chromebook Spin 311 review: Ports

 The Spin 311 is light on ports, but Acer still went out of its way to include a USB Type-A connection. On the right side of the chassis, there’s the sole USB-A port next to a Kensington Lock and the volume rocker, and on the left, a USB-C connection next to a headphone/microphone combo jack and the power button. The USB-C port supports DisplayPort over USB-C, allowing you to use an external display. It’s also the charging port. 

The Spin 311’s port selection is in line with what I’d expect at this price, given that competing Chromebooks like Lenovo’s C330 come with the same range of ports. 

However, the C330, the Samsung Chromebook 4, and several other competing Chromebooks from HP and Asus all come with a USB 3.0 (or better) connection. The Spin 311’s USB-A port is only rated for USB 2.0. Even considering the price bracket, there’s really no excuse for an older USB standard when other devices and peripherals have already caught up. 

 Acer Chromebook Spin 311 review: Display

The Spin 311 sports an 11.6-inch IPS display with a resolution just above 720p (1366 x 768). It’s a screen of compromises. On one hand, the display is covered in antimicrobial Gorilla Glass, providing protection from most falls. On the other, the peak brightness is low, as is the resolution, and the bezels are thick. 

I watched through Gone Girl and Good Time to see how the screen would hold up. In Gone Girl, the Spin 311’s screen didn’t handle the various shades of gray in that movie’s color palette well, often washing the darker areas out with any nearby colors. Good Time had a similar problem, implying the correct colors without always hitting them.

Between both movies, however, the resolution stood out most. Even at 11.6 inches, the resolution was too low. It was like watching a video file that had been compressed one too many times, with fast-paced scenes falling apart in a smear of pixels. 

Our benchmarks back up much of what I experienced using the Spin 311. We measured a peak brightness of just 204.2 nits, dropping below the 200 mark in some corners. The Spin 311’s display also only produced 70.4% of the sRGB color spectrum, which is disappointing when you consider that a similarly-priced competitor like the Acer Chromebook R 11 is able to deliver a 73.2% sRGB spectrum rating.

In short, it’s not a great screen for watching movies or TV shows. That said, I fired up Destiny 2 on Stadia and didn’t have any issues. Even in a fast-paced FPS, the screen handled motion well, and in the context of a game, the lowered resolution is easy to forgive. 

As a touchscreen the display works well, but it’s not perfect. A few hiccups like accidentally clicking a link while scrolling keep the tablet experience from being perfect. At this price, though, a few minor annoyances are easy to contend with. 

Acer Chromebook Spin 311 review: Keyboard and touchpad

The Spin 311’s keyboard is undoubtedly  its strongest feature. Even as a self-proclaimed mechanical keyboard snob, I was able to fly while typing on the Spin 311. It even rivaled the typing experience of my Dell XPS 15, which is seriously impressive considering how inexpensive the Spin 311 is. 

It’s not an accident that the typing experience is great, either. The Spin 311’s keys have a travel distance of 1.6mm, adding a nice amount of snap and responsiveness to each keystroke. 

This is a feature Acer displays prominently, even on the Chromebook’s pre-applied factory sticker. It seemed like nothing more than a marketing gimmick, but after using the Spin 311, I’m a believer. 

The touchpad is similarly responsive, despite being on the small side (it measures 2.4 x 4.1 inches). It’s wide but short, so while I was able to swipe from side to side without issues, my finger would occasionally fall off when moving up or down. That’s not a criticism, but still something to note. 

Gestures are a fair point of criticism, however. Google hasn’t quite nailed the feel of Windows Precision drivers yet, but it’s close. Two fingers scrolls, and three fingers brings up an overview of your open windows. Scrolling worked most of the time, but using three fingers to bring up the overview usually required a few tries. 

Acer Chromebook Spin 311 review: Audio

The bottom-firing stereo speakers on the Spin 311 work surprisingly well, even if they’re not all that impressive. The speakers are small, and the sound has a heavy upper midrange bias. That’s great for movies and TV shows, accentuating the dialogue. 

For music, it makes certain instruments stick out more than others. In a riffing piano tune like Anomalie’s Valours, for example, the upper midrange of the piano would jolt out of the music. In such a melodically dense piece, the sudden jump in volume can be jarring. 

Still, the speakers work. They can get loud without distorting -- something even premium Windows machines struggle with -- and they were always clear, even when the Spin 311 was sitting on my lap. 

Acer Chromebook Spin 311 review: Performance

The Spin 311 is powered by MediaTek’s MT8183 eight-core processor. Four of those cores are built on ARM’s Cortex-A73 architecture, while the other four use the Cortex-A53 architecture. The result is an eight core processor with four dominant cores, plus an additional four for aiding or handling other tasks. 

Acer pairs the MediaTek chip with 4GB of memory, and either 32GB or 64GB of eMMC storage. 

The processing power is great for a machine of this size. Jumping from window to window feels snappy, even when you have a couple of lightweight applications open. For some hard numbers, we measured a multi-core score of 5,507 and a single-core score of 1,361 in Geekbench 4. 

The more telling benchmark is CrXPRT, which is built specifically to test Chromebook performance. In the latest version, the Spin 311 received an average score of 41. The Lenovo Duet received the same score, while Acer’s pricier Spin 715 earned a higher score (65). 

In addition to our lab testing, I put the Spin 311 through a Chrome torture test, opening as many tabs as possible before the notebook started to slow down. At eight tabs, Chrome became noticeably sluggish, but it didn’t break. You’ll notice slower performance if you’re switching between a lot of tabs (around 10) at once, but below that, it holds up.

For most use cases, that’s acceptable. The Spin 311 isn’t powerful, but it’s surprisingly efficient given the hardware inside. 

It’s not perfect, though. I also downloaded Asphalt 9 and Fallout Shelter to test a few games. Asphalt 9 crashed a handful of times before finally working, and although the game ran, it had framerate issues. Fallout Shelter was great, however, loading and running without any problems.

Acer Chromebook Spin 311 review: Battery life

The Spin 311 has a large enough battery to last through a full workday, but it still falls short of the advertised 15 hours of battery life. In our web surfing battery test, the Spin 311 lasted for 11 hours and 41 minutes, which is good, but still more than three hours shy of 15 hours. 

Given the display’s resolution, I hoped for more. The Lenovo Duet was able to last an hour longer in the same test, despite sporting a higher-resolution screen. 

 Acer Chromebook Spin 311 review: Webcam

You have to cut a few corners to get a usable machine under $300, and a popular place to do that cutting is in the webcam. The Spin 311’s 720p webcam isn’t very good. Even under decent lighting conditions, the webcam displays a layer of noise across the entire image, which is only exaggerated as things get darker. 

The colors aren’t great, either. My lips, for example, would appear either pale or blue under most lighting conditions (a mirror confirms this is, indeed, a webcam issue and not malnourishment). 

I never expected much out of the webcam, and you shouldn’t either. It does the job for video calls and the like, but you won’t be carrying around the Spin 311 to take pictures. 

Acer Chromebook Spin 311 review: ChromeOS 

ChromeOS is like Android for a full-sized machine, at least for the most part. Although you can still browse the Google Play store and download most apps to the Spin 311, there are still quite a few that aren’t supported. And they aren’t no-name apps, either. GeForce Now, for example, isn’t supported. 

Google Play is just one part of what makes ChromeOS a compelling option, however. Google has seamlessly integrated its ecosystem of apps in the operating system, not only because they’re pre-installed, but also because your search queries pull up documents you have stored in Google Drive alongside local files and applications. 

There are small, quality-of-life features, too. Casting a YouTube video, for example, takes no more than a couple of presses. 

ChromeOS isn’t nearly as feature-rich as Windows, but it still gets the basics right. Managing your apps is a breeze, and although multitasking features like split screen aren’t perfect, they’re at least present.

 Acer Chromebook Spin 311 review: Verdict

The Acer Chromebook Spin 311 is another sub-$300 silver Chromebook in a market swimming with them. That makes it hard to justify, especially compared to something like the Lenovo Duet, which does what the Spin 311 does better in many areas, and is even cheaper. 

The saving grace is the Spin 311’s keyboard, which is truly excellent. It’s not as good as the best laptop keyboards, but the fact that an 11.6-inch Chromebook is even in the discussion should speak volumes. The battery life is solid, too, and although performance isn’t great, it’s enough to handle light, day-to-day tasks.

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Sours: https://www.tomsguide.com/reviews/acer-chromebook-spin-311-review
Acer Chromebook Spin 311 Review - The Best Chromebook In 2021?

Acer Chromebook Spin 311

MSRP: $269.99

Let's get technical

Operating System

Chrome OS

Chromebooks run on Chrome OS - an all-new operating system designed by Google for a new generation of computers. It’s browser-based, cloud-powered, and boots up in seconds, which allows you to connect to the internet almost instantly. And, thanks to Chrome OS, updates are managed automatically1 so Chromebooks actually become faster and more secure over time.

1. Find more details about this device's automatic update expiration at our Help Center.

Best of Google

The world of Play Store apps at your fingertips

Enjoy access to the latest Android apps, games, music, movies, TV, books, magazines, and more, all from your Chromebook. And because the Play Store is always adding to its collection of apps and offerings, you’ll find content for any mood, anytime.

Learn MoreExplore the Google Play Store

Have questions?

Whether you’re considering your first Chromebook or looking for an upgrade, we’re here to help.

Help CenterCommunity Forum

Get your Acer Chromebook Spin 311

MSRP: $269.99

Sours: https://www.google.com/chromebook/device/acer-chromebook-spin-311-2019/

311 price chromebook spin acer

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Acer Chromebook Spin 713 Review: The Affordable Flagship

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