Acer Spin 1 , 11.6 Full HD Touch Notebook, Intel Pentium N4200, Intel HD Graphics, 4GB, 64GB HDD, SP111-32N-P6CV

This is a really versatile and well-made laptop. It’s surprisingly powerful; I searched online for “compare Intel Pentium N4200” and found a benchmark website that showed it was much more powerful than my old desktop. Yet, despite all that power, it is conveniently small. The folded size is smaller than a piece of office paper (less than 8 1/2 x 11 inches), and is only a half-inch thick, so it is very easy to carry around and fit into my bag. The case is a slightly darkened brushed stainless steel, which actually gives a bit of texture to make carrying it easier. The casing is really firm and strong so there are no fears of the hinge breaking — the ruin of many a laptop. Clearly, all that steel (yet it still only weighs about 2.5 lbs!) is there to strengthen the device for folding over the keyboard to use it as a tablet (or, in our house, to watch movies in bed).

The touchscreen offers just the right amount of responsiveness, and the touchpad works flawlessly, too. The keyboard is easy to type on, even for DH, since keys are well laid out with perfect spacing, and each key is set “taller” than I expected, plus they have a nice spring to them, too. The 11.5″ display looks extra vivid with perfect coloring (as a designer, that’s super important for me) so everything on-screen is really clear and detailed. Like most smaller-sized laptops, it arrives in Windows 10’s “S Mode.” If I was all about the Windows ecosystem, that’d be great, as it would increase battery power, too, but I actually rely on the Google ecosystem a lot in my work.

So, primarily to load the Chrome browser, I switched it over to regular Windows 10. To do that, I just clicked on the “Windows Store,” searched in the Store for “Switch out of S Mode,” clicked on “Learn More,” and after a few prompts followed by a super-quick reboot, that was that! Once I was in Windows 10, I could customize Windows however I liked. On the right side of the laptop, there is an actual volume rocker bar, which is super convenient, along with a recessed power switch, so it doesn’t get accidentally turned on/off, along with a headphone/headset socket, and a regular USB port. On the left side, it has an HDMI connection, so I can connect it directly to my HD TV or a flatscreen monitor.

The power port connects to the heavy duty 6-foot long power cord, included. There is also a USB 3 port, for super fast connections, and a micro SD card slot to instantly add (or swap) hundreds of gigabytes of storage in seconds. Honestly, I am delighted with the usefulness and quality of this very fine — and very small — laptop!