The Display

Although the 11.6-inch display boasts a pedestrian 1366 x 768 resolution, it’s an IPS panel devoid of the sort of color/contrast shift at off-center angles you normally get with a cheap PC notebook. I remember being in a meeting with a bunch of traditional PC OEMs talking about battery life. I was advocating for displays to be tested at 200 nits when one OEM turned to me and said that there are some notebooks in their lineup that won't even get that bright. Thankfully, the Chromebook 11 helps to push the low end of the PC industry forward. The display doesn't get incredibly bright by high-end mobile display standards, but it has excellent black levels and thus delivers a compelling 1088:1 max contrast ratio.

Display Brightness - White Level

Display Brightness - Black Level

Display Contrast Ratio

Color accuracy isn’t anything to write home about compared to the new wave of factory calibrated panels, but for the price it’s awesome. Hilariously enough, the Chromebook 11’s display is about as accurate as the first generation Surface Pro from Microsoft, and in many cases offers better color reproduction than the panel used on the more expensive Chromebook Pixel. Compared to other notebooks in its price class (or even those twice its price), you’re talking about a very good display.

CalMAN Display Performance - White Point Average

CalMAN Display Performance - Grayscale Average dE 2000

CalMAN Display Performance - Gamut Average dE 2000

CalMAN Display Performance - Saturations Average dE 2000

CalMAN Display Performance - Gretag Macbeth Average dE 2000

Design & Chassis WiFi & Performance
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  • Theard - Wednesday, October 30, 2013 - link

    what Joe implied I am inspired that some one able to make $8901 in 1 month on the computer. Get More Information .... j­­o­bs­2­3.c­o­m Reply
  • Lunyone - Tuesday, October 15, 2013 - link

    Yeah I would say similar thoughts as Klug4Pres. I think the better CPU is needed today and also for future uses. This could be the rebirth of the EEE PC era, but in a different form factor (bigger). I think people are looking for cheap and quality built basic PC's for the basics. I know tablets can take that factor up to some extent, but having the built in keyboard w/decent performance and a good screen is what most people like.
    I have the Acer V5 (won on Anandtech!) and it is quite an interesting laptop. It has a similar 11.6" screen size, but comes w/4 AMD Temash cores and Windows 8. I like the quick boot up from a cold start and the form factor is quite nice for light and portable. I have a 15.6" laptop that I use also, but it can be a bit heavy/bulky for some situations (couch/bed positions).
    This Chromebook looks quite interesting at the price point, but as Anand stated, it should have a better CPU in it for multi-tasking.
    Reply
  • OneOfTheseDays - Tuesday, October 15, 2013 - link

    What a joke of a review.

    Let me see here. Pay $279 for a laptop with crappy keyboard/touchpad, god awful performance (can't even stream HD youtube), ZERO multitasking abilities, is essentially a glorified browser that can't do anything outside of the Google ecosystem, and has ABYSMAL 4 hour battery life for an ARM processor.

    There is absolutely no reason to get this over any of the upcoming 8.1 Bay Trail hybrids/netbooks coming out this fall. The Asus T100 is an infinitely better buy in every way. Spend the extra $50 and you get a significantly better machine in every aspect that can do everything the Chromebook can do better.

    There is a reason why Chromebooks have something like 0.02% of the marketshare. They absolutely suck in just about every category imaginable. Google fanboys like Anand desperately want to see MSFT dethroned, which is why they pimp such obvious garbage at every turn.
    Reply
  • Drumsticks - Tuesday, October 15, 2013 - link

    I swear anand has been called a fanboy of every different platform at some point.

    That said, I almost agree just not on such extremes. To be fair, I believe he mentioned the keyboard being great and the clickpad being as good as or even better than some more expensive PCs. Similarly, sound and display are good for the price. So you aren't really giving (at least the hardware) engineering credit. It would certainly be nice to see this same machine running windows, if Microsoft would only consider eating into their Windows revenue.
    Reply
  • damianrobertjones - Tuesday, October 15, 2013 - link

    "and display are good for the price" - Every Windows laptop review literally slams the 1366x768 resolution so the same should really be applied here! Reply
  • Onkel Harreh - Tuesday, October 15, 2013 - link

    Admittedly, the Macbook Air 11 also uses this resolution. I think at 11 inches, it's acceptable, only because Apple haven't ditched it yet. Reply
  • Guspaz - Tuesday, October 15, 2013 - link

    The Macbook Air uses a TN panel. Now, it's a pretty decent TN panel that looks quite good once calibrated (I've got a 2012 13" Mac Air), but it's still not IPS. Reply
  • isid - Tuesday, October 15, 2013 - link

    Did you not see this quote?

    "Although the 11.6-inch display boasts a pedestrian 1136 x 768 resolution, it’s an IPS panel devoid of the sort of color/contrast shift at off-center angles you normally get with a cheap PC notebook."

    He acknowledges the low resolution, but explains why it's a decent display nevertheless. An IPS display on a $279 notebook is pretty decent, especially when it has decent color reproduction and blacks. The displays on cheap Windows notebooks are often horrible washed out dim messes without even considering the resolution.
    Reply
  • Krysto - Tuesday, October 15, 2013 - link

    Because they cost $500+, and don't even use IPS. This costs half of that and uses IPS.

    Next question.
    Reply
  • Qwertilot - Tuesday, October 15, 2013 - link

    You'd need a somewhat more powerful processor and quite a bit more storage to run windows sensibly which would push the price up a bit - especially so if you kept the SSD storage.

    You could drop the build quality of course but, as he says in the review, that just shouldn't happen. With nice, cheap, tablets around with great screens etc, laptops really do need to have this sort of build/screen/storage quality as a baseline.

    A lightweight linux would be possible (as per the original netbooks) but Chrome os can probably stand in nicely enough.
    Reply

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