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Acer Chromebook Spin 314 (2023) review: the laptop I wish I’d had as a student
7:13 pm | September 20, 2023

Author: admin | Category: Chromebooks Computers Computing Gadgets Laptops | Tags: | Comments: Off

Acer Chromebook Spin 314 (2023): One-minute review

The single best thing about the Acer Chromebook Spin 314 is how easy it is to take around with you, no matter where you’re off to or what carrier bag you’ve got this laptop will become your most helpful travel companion. I was pleasantly surprised when I first received our review unit of the laptop and was able to slip it into my little tote bag, with room to spare for both the charger and my current paperback of choice. 

In terms of design, for what the Chromebook is offering in terms of simplicity and portability I think it looks like the perfect productive machine. No fancy aesthetics or unnecessary frilly, this is likely my favorite Chromebook design so far, and as a long-time Macbook girl that claim carries a lot of weight coming from me. The Acer Chromebook Spin 314 could be the best laptop for you if all you want is something to work on, maybe watch a few shows, and put away until the next day. 

I worked with this laptop for several days and honestly, it was the most stress-free testing I’ve done in a while. Because it’s so thin and light, I could slip it into my bag and carry on with my life without my shoulders screaming, and with a good 10 hours of battery life sometimes it wouldn’t leave my bag for a day or two purely because there was no rush to plug it in and charge it. As usual, the simple ChromeOS interface is free of any unnecessary apps or clutter and you can boot it up, sign in, and get to work in like 10 minutes right out of the box. 

If you’re looking for the best student Chromebook, you’ve come to the right review. The Acer Chromebook Spin 314 is everything you need and more to get you through the school year without splashing out a frightening amount of cash. The touch display makes reading digital textbooks or annotating notes a breeze, and the glass-like trackpad is a joy to use. 

The Intel Pentium processor inside means you can work and watch at the same time without any impact on performance, making multitasking easier - of course, part of the credit here goes to Google for making ChromeOS such a resource-light operating system. Overall, I really enjoyed my time with the Acer Chromebook Spin 314 and I’m actually quite sad I can’t hold onto it forever. 

Acer Chromebook Spin 314 (2023): Price and availability

  • How much does it cost?  $380 / £329 / around AU$661 
  • When is it available? Available now
  • Where can you get it? Available in the US and UK, tricky to find in Australia 

Chromebooks are often heralded for their affordability compared to other laptops, and the Acer Chromebook Spin 314 lives up to that and more. This is probably one of the best cheap laptops you can buy right now in terms of pure value for money.

Keep in mind that the cheaper price tag often indicates somewhat limited capabilities, so if you want to play games beyond mobile app games (via the Google Play Store), you’ll have to look elsewhere. 

This sentiment extends to users looking for a device with some serious computing power, as once again, Chromebooks are for your everyday basic tasks - if you want to run resource-intensive software, you’ll need to find something else. For everything this device offers, the price is very reasonable.

  • Price: 5 / 5

Sid view of Acer Chromebook SPIN 314

(Image credit: Muskaan, Future)

Acer Chromebook Spin 314 (2023): Specs

There are a few different models of the Acer Chromebook Spin 314, with our review unit effectively taking the entry-level position. There is actually a cheaper Spin 314 that uses a MediaTek Kompanio processor, but that model is older and uses a slightly different chassis.

As for other models, it's a bit confusing; the US Acer website list a far more expensive model ($679.99) but it's missing some specs, most notably any storage details - and I couldn't find it for sale anywhere, either. As such, I've included only the specs for our standard-model review unit below.

Acer Chromebook Spin 314 (2023): Design

  • Solid, functional chassis
  • Sleek and Stylish
  • Comfortable typing experience 

I absolutely love the design of this laptop. This may be my youth showing, but I think it looks so retro and cute. The silver plastic chassis and overall rounded design remind me of the laptops my dad used to use - and sometimes let me play Minesweeper on - and I think the choice to go 'back to basics' was a smart move on Acer's part. 

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Acer Chromebook Spin 314

(Image credit: Future)
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Acer Chromebook Spin 314

(Image credit: Future)
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Acer Chromebook Spin 314

(Image credit: Future)

Of course, it wouldn’t be called a Spin if it didn’t spin - well, at least offer some kind of mobility. The full HD touchscreen offers impressively sharp colors without feeling too harsh, and the ability to turn your thin laptop into a slightly chunky tablet thanks to the 360-degree hinge is perfect if you want to snuggle up in bed to binge your favorite shows.

In terms of connectivity, you get a good selection of ports that include two USB-C ports, standard USB-A, and HDMI, so you can hook up quite a few peripherals and also connect it to a monitor if you want a dual-display setup. 

Typing on this laptop is a dream once you get used to the Everything Button (ubiquitous on ChromeOS devices) replacing the caps lock, and as someone who notoriously hates most laptop touchpads, the Acer Chromebook Spin's is very tactile. Also, Acer uses ocean glass in the touchpad's construction, meaning the pad is made of recycled materials - a small but welcome addition that I appreciate.

Although its minimalist appearance might not be for everyone, I can’t really fault the design of the Acer Chromebook Spin 314; it’s probably my favorite Chromebook so far. That's saying a lot, because I’m not very sweet on Chromebooks myself as a committed Macbook girl.

  • Design: 5 / 5

Acer Chromebook Spin 314 (2023): Performance

  • Good performance 
  • Great storage speed
Acer Chromebook Spin 314 (2023): Benchmarks

Here's how the Acer Chromebook Spin 314 (2023) performed in our suite of benchmark tests:

Mozilla Kraken (fewer is better): 608.1ms
Speedometer: 301
JetStream 2 (higher is better): 213.4 points
TechRadar battery life test: 10h 15m

Of course, the Acer Chromebook Spin 314 runs on Google’s ChromeOS, the easiest system to navigate and learn if you’re just starting out on your laptop journey. It’s suitable for most everyday tasks like browsing the web, collaborating on documents, streaming a favorite show, or just watching YouTube. The laptop is generally geared towards lightweight web-based activities, though that's not to say it isn't a strong contender for our list of best student laptops or even the best Chromebooks

The Acer Chromebook Spin 314 can pull a decent level of speed and computing prowess from its Intel Pentium Silver N6000 processor, and both within the benchmarks and general stress tests - plus frantic multitasking from me trying to do a million things at once - it breezed through everything I threw at it.

This laptop comes with 4 GB of DDR4 memory, which I'd say would be insufficient for a Windows laptop but is less of an issue here. There's also only 128GB of local eMMC storage, which again could be an issue were it not for ChromeOS's reliance on cloud storage via Google Drive. Naturally, these specs are modest overall, but that's not a huge problem for a Chromebook - especially one as competitively priced as this.

Acer Chromebook Spin 314

(Image credit: Future)

I worked on this laptop for a few days and while it was an adjustment to get used to the Everything Button, I’m genuinely sad I have to let go of this laptop. While I was using it I was thinking about my younger self, in school and university, and wondered at how much easier my life could have been if I had my hands on a laptop like this.

I wouldn’t have had to lug around a monstrously heavy machine, and it could've comfortably pulled double duty as an entertainment device in tablet mode. I can’t stress enough how much I recommend this laptop to students. 

If you’re going to be doing an essay-heavy degree, you should be looking at the Acer Chromebook Spin 314. Thanks to Google's cloud ecosystem, you can just pick up where you left off with your coursework on any device. 

Plus, it’s super refreshing to work on a device without all the clutter of regular desktops but still with basically everything you’d need to get through the day. 

  • Performance: 4 / 5

Acer Chromebook Spin 314 (2023): Battery life

Acer Chromebook Spin 314

(Image credit: Future)
  • 10-hour battery life
  • All-day use out of a single full charge 

The battery life of the Acer Chromebook Spin 314 lives up to the 10-hour estimate provided by Acer, clocking in at 10 hours and 15 minutes during our battery life benchmark. 

In the time I spent reviewing it, I only had to charge it twice - which is pretty impressive, and my biggest pet peeve when reviewing laptops is needing to have them constantly plugged in. You can leave the house, work on it all day, then come home and get at least two hours of Netflix time before you have to plug it in again.  

  • Battery life: 4 / 5

Should you buy the Acer Chromebook Spin 314 (2023)?

Buy it if...

You’re a student on a budget
Acer keeps it simple but sweet here: this is a plain laptop that is designed to get you through the day, and for the price you're getting a good, reliable product.

ChromeOS is your thing
ChromeOS has gained popularity and is genuinely a very good operating system, particularly if you work across multiple devices and want to take advantage of the Google ecosystem.  

You’re often on the move
There are lighter machines and smaller machines, but for a 14” laptop this is tough (and cheap) enough to happily withstand the hustle and bustle of commuting.

Don't buy it if...

You need more computing power 

Chromebooks are perfect for day-to-day or low-intensity work, but if you need a machine to run statistical programs or withstand some heavy-duty workloads, this isn't for you. 

You need to use specific programs
If you need to use rendering software, want to dive into animation, or play the latest games, you're not going to be doing that on this - or most other Chromebooks, for that matter. Perhaps a MacBook Air would be a better choice? 

Acer Chromebook Spin 314 (2023): Also consider

If our Acer Chromebook Spin 314 review has you considering other options, here are two more laptops to consider...  

How I tested the Acer Chromebook Spin 314

  • Several hours a day over the course of a week
  • Office work, general web use, Android games and apps, media playback
  • Techradar benchmark suite, real-world tests, using the laptop for work

I used the Acer Chromebook Spin 314 as my main device for a few days for work and as a personal computer over the weekend, testing it over a week in total. I did all my usual work with it - which mostly comprises word processing, online research, and video calls - and then used it in tablet mode to watch YouTube at home.

Read more about how we test

First reviewed September 2023

Acer Chromebook Spin 714 (2023) review: an almost perfect mid-range Chromebook
1:21 pm | August 11, 2023

Author: admin | Category: Computers Gadgets | Tags: | Comments: Off

Acer Chromebook Spin 714 (2023): Two-minute review

The Acer Chromebook Spin 714 may be far from the cheapest Chromebook out there, but it’s worth the extra cash. It goes above and beyond the typical ChromeOS machine to deliver speedy performance while powering a higher-resolution screen and webcam. If you’re willing to spend a little, this laptop offers excellent value. And really, the price is not bad at all.

The best Windows laptops at this price point would be more limited in terms of hardware. To start, you would probably be stuck with a 1080p resolution. And, if you get one with the same internal components, they’re going to go as far performance-wise with a Windows-based machine.

All things considered, the Acer Chromebook Spin 714 gives the kind of experience you would expect from one of the best Chromebooks. Along with its solid performance, it’s versatile the way you would expect the best 2-in-1 laptops to be. The hinge is rock solid, the screen looks and feels good, and the keyboard and trackpad are pretty good quality. 

Acer Chromebook Spin 714 (2023): Price & availability

  • How much does it cost?   $699.99 (about £549 / AU$1063) 
  • When is it available? Available now
  • Where can you get it?  Current configuration only available in the US at the time of writing 

The benchmark for what constitutes a budget machine is much lower for Chromebooks than it is for other types of laptops. So, the Acer Chromebook Spin 714’s price tag of $699.99 (about £549 / AU$1063) is solidly mid-range.

That said, it’s a much better laptop than the sub-$200 or sub-$300 options that make up a large part of the Chromebook market. It’s worth the price. You’ll end up with a better screen, better hardware, and a better overall design for what isn’t a lot when it comes to computers.

Consider the Acer Chromebook 515. It’s a bit cheaper at £449 (around $550 / AU$790) but has a weaker and older processor with its 11th-Gen Intel Core i3, a smaller 128GB SSD, and a lower resolution 1080p screen that doesn’t have touch capability. And, it’s only around $150 cheaper. Many of the cheapest Chromebooks use CPUs from Qualcomm that are otherwise used to power smartphones.

Really, the only downside to the Acer Chromebook Spin 714 is that this newest generation is only available in the US. UK shoppers will have to, for the moment at least, live with the previous version sporting a 12th-Gen Intel Core i5 and 512GB that goes for £1,099.99 (about  $1,402 / AU$2,130) while those living in Australia don’t have access to any version of the Chromebook Spin 714 at the time of writing.

  • Price score: 4.5 / 5

Acer Chromebook Spin 714 (2023): Specs

The Acer Chromebook Spin 714 comes in just one configuration.

Acer Chromebook Spin 714 on a desk

(Image credit: Future / James Holland)

Acer Chromebook Spin 714 (2023): Design

  • Very durable
  • Strong 2-in-1 versatility
  • Keyboard a little stiff but decent to type on

While the Acer Chromebook Spin 714 is not quite at the level of a MacBook Air or Pro aesthetically, it’s not far off thanks in part to its dark gray colorway and aluminum chassis covers (lid and keyboard side of the bottom). Though this laptop doesn’t do much outside of its gold hinges to set itself apart, it’s still a relatively smart-looking notebook.

Acer Chromebook Spin 714 on a desk

(Image credit: Future / James Holland)

It looks good as a tablet as well, if a little big. Since it has 360-degree hinges, using this portable in laptop mode, tablet mode, display mode, and tent mode is as easy as adjusting the screen until it’s in the proper position. Since the hinges are rock solid, the screen stays in place even when picked up and carried around.

Just as importantly, especially for any students or parents of students considering this Chromebook, it’s durable. It seems to be made of premium materials from the mostly aluminum chassis and Corning Gorilla glass used for the display to the smooth touchpad and solid-feeling keyboard. While I didn’t drop it from any rooftops, Acer has verified that the Acer Chromebook Spin 714 has military-grade durability.

Acer Chromebook Spin 714 on a desk

(Image credit: Future / James Holland)

Speaking of the touchpad and keyboard, they could have gone either way at this price point. Luckily, they’re both well executed. The keyboard is not necessarily the most comfortable since it has pretty short travel and feels a little stiff, but it’s accurate and easy to type on. The touchpad, on the other hand, has a nice, smooth feel to it, though it can be a little oversensitive at times.

Acer Chromebook Spin 714 on a desk

(Image credit: Future / James Holland)

Lastly, the port selection is limited on the surface, but appropriate for the kind of users that would gravitate towards this laptop. There are two USB-C ports that support Thunderbolt 4 and power delivery. Thankfully, Acer decided to put one on each side instead of clustering them together as I’ve seen on some laptops.  There’s also one regular USB port and an HDMI port, not to mention a headphone jack.

  • Design score: 4 / 5

Acer Chromebook Spin 714 on a desk

(Image credit: Future / James Holland)

Acer Chromebook Spin 714 (2023): Performance

  • Speedy performance
  • High resolution screen and webcam
  • Speakers are underwhelming
Acer Chromebook Spin 714 (2023): Laptop benchmarks

Here's how the Acer Chromebook Spin 714 (2023) performed in our suite of benchmark tests:

Geekbench 5 (Android): Single Core: 1535
Geekbench 5 (Android): Multi Core: 6024
WebXPRT 4: 245
CrXPRT 2: 172
JetStream 2: 250.180
Battery Life (Web Browsing): 12:41:30 

With its 13th-Gen Intel Core i5 and 8GB of RAM, the Acer Chromebook Spin 714 is as close to a powerhouse as I’ve found when it comes to ChromeOS-based computers. You’re not going to be playing AAA games on this, but you probably wouldn’t be doing that or other extremely demanding tasks like heavy video editing on a Chromebook anyway.

But, in day-to-day productivity, the Acer Chromebook Spin 714 was solid as a rock. I was able to not only have over 20 tabs open at once with three of them being video streams, but I could go between any tab without experiencing a lag, which was especially impressive when switching between the different streams.

Acer Chromebook Spin 714 on a desk

(Image credit: Future / James Holland)

On top of that, the 14-inch touch display is a pleasure to use. Not only does it look good with its 1920 x 1200p resolution with 100% sRGB color coverage, not to mention slightly extra screen real estate thanks to its 16:10 aspect ratio, but interacting with it is a treat. The touchscreen is accurate and responsive no matter if you’re using it in laptop or tablet mode. And, since it’s Corning Gorilla Glass, it has a soft yet solid feel.

The webcam is equally crisp with its 1440p resolution, making this a good laptop for use with video conferencing. Its refresh rate is capped at 30Hz, but the results were still relatively smooth when moving quickly in frame.

If there’s one area for complaint, it’s the speakers. It seems that very few laptop manufacturers have been able to get good audio out of their portables and that’s the case here. Not only is the volume on the quiet side, but the audio is a bit hollow sounding. There’s not a lot of low-end as well, but that’s to be expected with a laptop. I would recommend using headphones or speakers when possible.

  • Performance score: 4.5 / 5

Acer Chromebook Spin 714 (2023): Battery life

  • Very good battery life
  • 65 watt power delivery via USB-C ports for quick charging

The battery life on the Acer Chromebook Spin 714 is very good. In our benchmark test for battery life, it lasted a good 12 hours and 41 minutes. That’s almost MacBook Air numbers, which is pretty impressive. While flagship laptops are now reaching past the 15-hour mark, getting 12 hours out of a mid-range laptop isn’t bad at all. And, it’s certainly more than enough to last a full day at work or school. Plus, it charges up pretty quickly thanks to the 65 watt power delivery from those USB-C ports, specifically being able to give a further four hours of use after 30 minutes of charging.

  • Battery score: 4.5 / 5

Should you buy the Acer Chromebook Spin 714 (2023)?

Acer Chromebook Spin 714 on a desk

(Image credit: Future / James Holland)

Buy it if...

You want a Chromebook that can perform
For a Chromebook, this portable is powerful and can get you through just about any task you could run on a ChromeOS-powered machine.

You want a more premium feeling Chromebook
While this is a mid-range laptop, it has some premium appointments from its sturdy hinges and reasonably powerful specs to the WUXGA 16:10 touch screen covered in Corning Gorilla Glass.

Don't buy it if...

You want to run demanding tasks
This Chromebook can keep up with just about any Chromebook out there, but there are certain things that these types of laptops just can’t do such as high-level gaming or video and photo editing.

Acer Chromebook Spin 714 (2023): Also consider

If the Acer Chromebook Spin 714 (2023) has you considering other options, here are two more laptops to consider...

How I tested the Acer Chromebook Spin 714 (2023)

  • Tested for a week
  • Used it as my main laptop for stretches at a time
  • Tested the various form factors

I used the Acer Chromebook Spin 714 for about a week, using it for my day-to-day productivity to see how I liked using it. I got a feel for not only the touch screen, but the keyboard and touchpad. I also tried to push it to its limits by opening up over 20 tabs with some of them streaming video to see if I could slow it down.

As this is a 2-in-1 laptop, I also tried out the other form factors including tent and display mode to watch some streaming video while relaxing. I also tested out the webcam and speakers to get an idea of how they performed as well.

I’ve spent the last few years reviewing tech gear of all sorts so I’ve gotten a feel for what to look for and how to put a piece of kit through its paces to see whether it’s worth the recommendation.

Read more about how we test

First reviewed August 2023

Acer Chromebook Spin 514 (2022) review: good price, great performance
9:00 pm | March 24, 2023

Author: admin | Category: Computers Gadgets | Tags: | Comments: Off

Acer Chromebook Spin 514 (2022): Two-minute review

The Acer Chromebook Spin 514 (2022) - or as Acer officially refers to it, the Acer Chromebook Spin 514 (CP514-3H) - may not be the most kitted-out Chromebook we’ve seen, and it’s certainly not among the cheapest either. However, it’s clever enough to rival $1,000/£1,000 models in performance while keeping the price a little closer to the ground, which makes it a better proposition in terms of value, which in turn makes it among the best Chromebooks right now.

This 2-in-1 laptop offsets some of the production cost by keeping its features down to the essentials. There are neither novel nor particularly newsworthy features here – just the most vital ones are present, and they’re well-implemented. The 14-inch 1080p Corning Gorilla Glass display, as an example, is made for Netflix binges. Meanwhile, the webcam is made for the post-pandemic worker with its 1080p video resolution.

It doesn’t scrimp on build quality and power either, which is why it’s kind of bizarre that Acer has managed to keep it relatively affordable. While you don’t look at that chassis and start to drool, it doesn’t feel cheap. Nor does it feel too clunky and heavy – though I wouldn’t call it Ultrabook-level light, it’s still travel-friendly.

Mind you, it doesn’t surpass something like the much pricier HP Dragonfly Pro Chromebook in performance. But the difference is so small and, to non-technophile users, practically negligible, that you kind of wonder why you want to pay a lot for the latter if you mostly care about getting your workload done.

The Acer Chromebook Spin 514 (2022) makes a clean sweep for the (upper) mid-range, and this is the Chromebook for everyone - whether you’re a pro, a casual user, or just someone looking for the best Chromebook for students

Acer Chromebook Spin 514 (2022): Price & availability

  • How much does it cost? $699.99 (about £570 / AU$1,050)
  • When is it available? Available now
  • Where can you get it? Available in the US 

The Acer Chromebook Spin 514 (2022) may be an expensive piece of kit as far as Chromebooks go, but there are much pricier models so I would put this in the higher mid-range. At $699.99 (about £570 / AU$1,050), it sits in the same price range as less capable Windows laptops, but that’s more because their internals handle a much more robust operating system that requires more resources than Chrome OS. And, if most of your workload, whether for work or school, can be done on the Chrome browser, you may get more out of this one than its Windows counterparts.

Unfortunately for UK and Australian consumers, this particular model is only available in the US and seems exclusively sold at the Acer online store. Those in the US who want something even cheaper can purchase its AMD Ryzen 3 version at Best Buy for $549.99 (about £450 / AU$825).

  • Value: 4.5 / 5
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Acer Chromebook Spin 514 (2022) on a kitchen counter

(Image credit: Future / Michelle Rae Uy)
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Acer Chromebook Spin 514 (2022) on a kitchen counter

(Image credit: Future / Michelle Rae Uy)

Acer Chromebook Spin 514 (2022): Specs

Trying to figure out the wide variety of configurations the Acer Chromebook Spin 514 has can be a gnarly process, as there are so many of them and they differ from region to region. So we’re focusing this review on our version, which is the Acer Chromebook Spin 514 CP514-3HH-R6VK. 

The Ryzen 5 5625C chip that powers it, which hit the shelves in 2022, may not be the most powerful. However, it is more than enough to handle the most demanding Chrome OS tasks, including streaming different video content all at once. 

There's integrated AMD Radeon Graphics inside as well – a necessary addition since this is one of Acer’s Chromebooks that support Steam on Chrome in Beta. It is disappointing that something poised to be a gaming Chromebook only has 8GB of memory and 128GB of eMMC storage, though. You probably shouldn’t rely on this as your primary device for gaming.

However, for productivity and casual use, those specs are more than enough to keep users happy – even more so because there’s a decent selection of ports on it including an HDMI 2.0 port.

  • Specs: 4 / 5

Acer Chromebook Spin 514 (2022) on a kitchen counter

(Image credit: Future / Michelle Rae Uy)

Acer Chromebook Spin 514 (2022): Design

  • Solid if run-of-the-mill design
  • Excellent display with intuitive touchscreen
  • Great keyboard and trackpad, ok speakers

Though other premium Chromebooks come in attractive luxe packages, the Acer Chromebook Spin 514 (2022) focuses on what matters more to sensible consumers. As a result, it’s not the fanciest-looking option out there with its typical laptop design and 'Sparkly Silver' finish. 

It is pretty robust, however, with its verified military-grade (MIL-STD-810H) durability, which makes it the perfect portable for working on the go. Adding to its travel-friendliness is its decently lightweight design. Not that I’d call this an ultra-lightweight model, but I don’t mind lugging this around when I’m traveling (and I did).

The chassis might not be anything special, but it also doesn’t feel cheap. And, as an extra precaution for when it’s tackling demanding workloads, it’s designed to lift at the front base for better air circulation when in laptop mode. It got a little warm from time to time during testing, but never did it get hot.

Acer Chromebook Spin 514 (2022) on a kitchen counter

(Image credit: Future / Michelle Rae Uy)

Speaking of modes, this is a 2-in-1 laptop, giving it even more value. Is it too big and thick to be a tablet that’s comfortable to use? Perhaps. But, it’s really not that bad, especially if you’re just writing down notes or organizing your digital planner. I’m more concerned about the lack of a stylus in the box; while the Acer CineCrystal touch display supports the USI Stylus, you have to purchase it separately, which is disappointing.

Still, that display dazzles. 

I don’t always expect a great display on a Chromebook, but this 1080p one boasts vibrant colors that are a little on the cooler side and a great dynamic range so dark scenes in shows like Stranger Things and Wednesday still have a lot of detail in them. It’s great for media consumption, as well as note-taking with its intuitive and responsive touch capability.

Acer Chromebook Spin 514 (2022) on a kitchen counter

(Image credit: Future / Michelle Rae Uy)

The 1080p webcam is equally great, giving you 60fps video capability to get rid of ghosting issues and great overall picture quality that allow me to look my best, whether on work video conference calls or video chats with loved ones. It's certainly better than most 720p cameras you'll find on many laptops. I still prefer a stand-alone webcam, but this should do nicely when I'm at a cafe or traveling.

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Acer Chromebook Spin 514 (2022) on a kitchen counter

(Image credit: Future / Michelle Rae Uy)
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Acer Chromebook Spin 514 (2022) on a kitchen counter

(Image credit: Future / Michelle Rae Uy)

Not that you’d use that feature a lot since the keyboard on this is very comfortable and satisfying to type on. The keys have the slightest resistance before bottoming out, but it’s nothing you won’t get used to within the first hour if you’re a linear lover like me. I also appreciate the trackpad here, which is spacious, responsive, and nice to the touch. More importantly, it’s sitting right at the center, giving both my wrists enough space and not aggravating my OCD side.

Finally, the speakers – there are two upward-firing speakers built in that according to Acer are optimized for bass and treble response. In practice, they’re not too bad. They have plenty of volume on tap if not a lot of bass. And though the mid-range sounds a bit hollow and the overall audio quality is a little compressed, the high end is actually ok.

  • Design: 4.5 / 5

Acer Chromebook Spin 514 (2022) on a kitchen counter

(Image credit: Future / Michelle Rae Uy)

Acer Chromebook Spin 514 (2022): Performance

  • Performance almost comparable to pricier Chromebooks
  • All-day battery life

Jumping into the fray of premium Chromebooks isn’t easy, especially with less powerful yet still capable internals. But the Acer Chromebook Spin 514 is proving that it might just be the way to go, considering its price-to-performance ratio.

Comparing its benchmark results with the much more expensive HP Dragonfly Pro Chromebook, you can see that there isn’t a massive difference in performance. That is, the Dragonfly Pro Chromebook scores higher in the Geekbench single-core and multi-core tests, but not by as much as I would expect considering the difference in price. Same with the WebGL Aquarium FPS test – although the Chromebook Spin 514 does fall a little further behind when rendering 30K fish. With JetStream 2, a test focused on web applications, it even goes toe-to-toe with the even pricier HP Elite Dragonfly Chromebook.

In real-world scenarios, the Chromebook Spin 514 breezes through mostly browser-based workloads without a hitch. It’s able to manage 20 tabs of websites with varying graphical and processing demands while keeping things relatively cool and quiet. It managed to run three different streaming services while I’ve got online shops, manufacturer websites, and my work-related pages smoothly and lag-free.

It even showcased better longevity than the Dragonfly Pro Chromebook, lasting two hours and 15 minutes longer during our short movie battery test. And although eight hours and 20 minutes is already long enough for most people, giving them that whole workday battery life, I’ve found when just doing purely work stuff on this Chromebook that it’ll have a bit of extra juice left for the next morning.

  • Performance: 4 / 5

Acer Chromebook Spin 514 (2022) on a kitchen counter

(Image credit: Future / Michelle Rae Uy)

Should you buy the Acer Chromebook Spin 514 (2022)?

Buy it if...

You need a powerful Chromebook but don't have as big of a budget
This is one capable Chromebook that keeps its price in the comfortable mid-range. You might even get more from it than from a similarly-priced Windows laptop if you don't need a full operating system.

You care more about performance than aesthetic
Not that this looks hideous, but it certainly doesn't have the fancy trimmings of something like the HP Dragonfly Pro Chromebook.

Don't buy it if...

You're on a very tight budget
Though not quite as pricey as other premium Chromebooks, this might be out of reach if you're seeking something sub-$500/£500.

Acer Chromebook Spin 514 (2022): Also consider

If my Acer Chromebook Spin 514 (2022) has you considering other options, here are two more laptops to consider...

How I tested the Acer Chromebook Spin 514 (2022)

  • Spent a week testing the Acer Chromebook Spin 514 (2022)
  • Tested it for work and casual browsing and media consumption
  • Used a mix of in-house and commercial benchmarking tools

It only took me a week to test the Acer Chromebook Spin 514 (2022) as it was clear from the get-go that it's a capable machine for many types of users. Probably the longest part of my testing was our battery test, which took all day. The rest of the week I spent using it as my main device.

To put it through the paces, I used it for work, writing up emails and articles, using it for research, and handling social media platforms. I also used it to stream movies and shows. I also ran it through our suite of benchmark and battery tests.

I've been testing and reviewing computing devices, including laptops and Chromebooks, for years now, first as a freelancer for different tech publications and now as one of the Computing editors at TechRadar. I'm a regular laptop and Chromebook user myself.

Read more about how we test

First reviewed March 2023