Years back, Chromebooks were essentially simply for those seeking ultra low-cost internet machines. Now, Google’s Chrome OS are available on more costly machines that are really worth their cost. If you’re seeking to stick with the fundamentals though, you may still find options, and the Lenovo Chromebook C330 could possibly be the best one of these all.

Cheap Chromebooks used to be everywhere, & most were pretty solid. I still have fond memories of my Acer Chromebook C720 right down to this day. In the past, however, Intel was the very best guess for performance since ARM options were typically pretty poor on that front.

In 2019, Intel’s low-end, fanless chipsets have the capability for most tasks, nonetheless they suffer on Chrome OS with regards to Android programs especially. To bypass that, the Lenovo Chromebook C330 runs on the MediaTek MT8173c chipset paired with 4GB of RAM, and it actually runs pretty much given the purchase price point.

I can have even several tabs open simultaneously without issue. My daily workflow at 9to5 generally includes having several WordPress tabs, Slack, YouTube, other online tools, and frequently Spotify open all at one time. While I’ll face lag or reloading issues every once in awhile, overall performance is merely fine beneath the load. For some users, this machine stength through your typical usage.

Android applications also work nicely. The Play Store loads up just fine, and despite their typical usability issues, programs such as for example Slack work fairly decently too. The overall game Stardew Valley also runs well upon this hardware (with WASD support too!) which is nice to see.

The C330 also supports Linux software from the box, but it’s not an excellent experience. The performance here takes an clear hit, so you’ll probably want to utilize this feature sparingly. It’s really something best applied to an Intel-powered machine.

The Lenovo Chromebook C330 also offers a shockingly decent display because of its price. The 11.6-inch 1366×768 display is a touchscreen IPS panel which is rather sharp and gets decently bright. Don’t be prepared to take this to the park and make utilization of it without squinting in sunlight, nonetheless it handles a brightly lit room or working outside in the shade just fine. Personally, I’m just happy that this affordable device comes with an IPS panel.

The touchscreen portion not super responsive in my own testing, that is a shame since that is a convertible. The 2-in-1 design on the hinge means it’s simple to flip the 11.6-inch panel from a notebook computer to a tablet, but probably, you’re only likely to want to utilize this for video.

However, using this machine for video exposes among its big disadvantages, the speakers. The dual speakers are pretty horrendous. You can’t expect much from an inexpensive laptop computer such as this, but even for $280, I expected a bit more. Over enough time I used this machine, I mostly just avoided using the speakers entirely.

That’s a lttle bit of a shame, as the reduced price, smaller size, and fairly lightweight 2.64-pound machine will make a solid tablet alternative to many people. That lighter weigh-in is basically because of the all-plastic build which is all-white aswell. Taking notes from Google’s software designs, the entirety of the Lenovo Chromebook C330 is white with simply a Lenovo logo and Chrome logo “decorating” the chassis. That plastic feels quite durable, even though I didn’t damage or stain it at around a few weeks useful, I’m betting it wouldn’t be difficult to take action.

Along the sides of the device, Lenovo has decked the C330 with all the current ports you could require from a budget Chromebook. There’s a full-size HDMI port, microSD card slot, full-size USB-A ports on both sides, and two USB-C ports. Both of these can be utilised for charging and also audio. There’s also a 3.5mm headphone jack in order to avoid those awful speakers.

Among the best parts about the Lenovo Chromebook C330, though, may be the keyboard. Lenovo hardly ever does not impress here, and I believe they do small Chromebook keyboards much better than anyone else.

The keys themselves are produced from black plastic, a good contrast to the white body, and so are flat at the top. Key travel isn’t massive, but it’s much better than famous brands Apple’s MacBooks. It’s comfortable to type on with good spacing between your keys. I could adapt to it in simply a short while. The trackpad below isn’t anything to send a letter home about, but you could easily get far worse from machines in this cost range.

Finally, there’s the battery life. Overall, it’s quite good. The ARM processor permits fine endurance during the day and definitely can hit Lenovo’s claim of 10 hours. I was slightly disappointed with standby time which, occasionally, will just randomly drain per day though. Overall, you’ll oftimes be pleased with the battery life here, and the actual fact that USB-C may be the charging method is an advantage for sure.

Looking at the Lenovo Chromebook C330 alone, it’s a fairly good machine for many people. However, when you consider the broader picture, it becomes a crucial device. Low-end Chromebooks have grown to be a lot more scarce, and at under $300, the C330 literally gives more costly models a run because of their money, specially when it’s on sale (which happens often). During publishing, Best Buy and Amazon both sell the device for under $240.