Finally got my hands on the second Chuwi Laptop, the Lapbook 14.1 this model is more impressive over the 15.6″ model I reviewed thanks to it’s new Apollo Lake Celeron N3450, 4GB of dual channel 1600Mhz RAM and the option to even add an SSD in there to expand storage and boost boot and system speeds.
Wireless is handled by the excellent dual antenna Intel Wireless AC 3165 chipset with great range and speeds tested so far. The build is much like the 15.6″ model, quality plastics and that white on black color scheme.
The screen is very, very nice, one of the best 14.1 inch matte anti glare screens I’ve seen in a while, better than even panels used on machines twice as expensive. Bright, sharp with good blacks and color reproduction. Brightness tops out around 230 Lux, but on a matte screen like this is more than enough and even useable in sunlight. And those bezels are small.
The Lapbook weight is 1.46 kilos so not the lightest 14-incher, but it is a solid little laptop with a decent build quality.
The keyboard has around 2.2mm of travel, nice raised up keys with a good feel to them, I wrote this post on the Lapbook 14 and it feels great to me. And the touchpad apart from that annoying minimize gesture isn’t bad at all. Feels more responsive than most touchpads in this price range. And at $250 over at Gearbest where I got this on special, I don’t feel is bad considering the spec and M.2 SSD expansion slot.
The USB ports, one USB 3.0 and the other USB 2.0 spec work fine, powering my external 1TB drives. The 64GB eMMC is a Sandisk with 170 mb/s reads and 100 writes, quite fast. But the best surprise for me is the M.2 Sata3 SSD slot. I added my 256GB Transend SSD and it works as expect, only changing the bios to use this as the boot drive is required to have this running a faster SSD with more storage. How to add your own SSD is covered in the above video.
Overall I’m impressed but it’s not all perfect, one major but fixable issue. Testing out some games last night I was able to get the CPU to hit 95 degrees C yet no thermal throttling. Once the system got too hoty paying LoL it forced itself into sleep mode.
Now I say this is fixable, I’ve seen Chuwi has used an insulator/fire wall pad onto of the heat sink to stop heat from passing to the rear plastic housing. This is the culprit, removing this adding a thermal pad and some copper directly onto of the N3450 I’ll be able to lower temps to stop this. (More on this soon, I’m going to record a tutorial video on my copper heatsink mod for this model) But expect a good 15-20 degrees c less max CPU temp.
My Realtek MicroSD card reader is also unmounting and mounting sometimes which is slightly annoying. Might need a driver update, I’ll see if that can also be fixed.
Battery life is also looking very good, 7 hours of Edge web browsing, maybe even more with light use. I’ll have more on this model soon so keep an eye on the site.