Round 2 of CES 2021 has arrived and with it, Acer has announced the company’s first-ever AMD Ryzen-powered Chromebook. The Acer Chromebook Spin 514 and Chromebook Enterprise Spin 514 follow in the footsteps of Lenovo’s recently launched ThinkPad C13 Yoga and the upcoming HP Chromebook Pro C645. Acer has opted to target not just enterprise users but also general consumers with the new addition to the Spin family and I think that’s a very wise decision on their part. More on that shortly. First, let’s take a look at Acer’s newest Chrome OS 2-in-1.
Acer Chromebook Spin 514
Don’t let the “enterprise” nomenclature throw you off. The only difference between the business and consumer models will be the inclusion of a Chrome Enterprise Upgrade on the latter. The hardware will be the same between comparable models. Speaking of that hardware, the Spin 514 will feature the Chromebook-tuned series of APUs from AMD. These processors range from an entry-level Ryzen 3 and Athlon Silver to the beefier quad-core Ryzen 5 and 7 APUs. Each of these processor options features AMD’s Radeon Graphics that we are hoping will boast significant performance gains over the UHD graphics found on comparable Intel CPUs in current Chromebooks.
Aesthetically, the Spin 514 favors its sibling, the Comet Lake-powered Chromebook Spin 713 with the obvious difference being a 16:9 14-inch Full HD display. The chassis is anodized aluminum on the lid and the base what I presume is a plastic or magnesium keyboard deck. The touch display features Corning Gorilla Glass for durability and scratch-resistance. The chassis of the Acer Chromebook Spin 514 is also MIL-spec rated to service a drop from 4 feet and withstand 132 pounds of downward force on the lid. While this is clearly looking like a good option for businesses, Acer emphasized the fact that the new Spin 514 is designed for a wide range of users that need a powerful, versatile, and durable device for remote work and personal use alike.
The pairing of AMD RyzenMobile processors with a durable design makes the new Acer Chromebook Spin 514 an excellent choice for users that need to get work done at homeJames Lin, General Manager, Notebooks, IT Products Business, Acer Inc.
Acer is also hoping that AMD’s Zen architecture and Radeon Vega graphics will appeal to creatives that need more powerful graphics processing to run tools such as video editors and coding tools. Along with the Chrome Enterprise Upgrade option, business customers can opt for Zero-Touch Enrollment which allows IT administrators to drop-ship devices to employees who then can simply log in, and everything they need is already installed via the Google Admin Console. It is a brilliant, time-saving way to deploy Chrome OS devices in mass to employees and/or students that are working remotely. Here’s a closer look at what the Acer Chromebook Spin 514 has to offer:
Chromebook 514 Specs
- Chrome OS / Chrome OS with Chrome Enterprise Upgrade
- 14″ IPS display, Touch panel, Full HD 1920 x 1080
- AMD Ryzen Accelerated Processing Unit (APU)
- Up to 16 GB of DDR4 system memory
- AMD Radeon Vega Mobile Graphics
- Up to 128 GB eMMC, up to 256 GB NVMe SSD
- 2 – USB Type-C ports supporting USB 3.2 Gen 1 (up to 5 Gbps)
- Display port over USB-C
- USB 3.2 Type A port
- HDMI® port (Acer Chromebook Spin 514 with Ryzen 5 or 7 APU will have a built-in HDMI port. For other SKUs such as Ryzen 3, Athlon Silver will not have a built-in HDMI port)
- 3.5 mm headphone/speaker jack, supporting headsets with built-in microphone
- Dimensions: 322.6 (W) x 225.5 (D) x 17.35/17.35 (H) mm (12.7 x 8.88 x 0.68/0.68 inches)
- Weight: 1.55 kg (3.42 lbs.)
- Battery Life: Up to 10 hours
- Wireless: Wi-Fi 5 2×2 MIMO Bluetooth 5
- Audio: Two built-in stereo speakers; Two built-in microphones
- Durability: U.S. MIL-STD 810 (Sand and Dust testing based on MIL-STD 810F.)
The Acer Chromebook Spin 514 will be available in the US to consumers in February with a starting price of $479. This will likely be the Athlon or Ryzen 3 model with 4GB of RAM. It will go on sale in the EMEA in March and start at 529 EUR. The enterprise model will at $749 here in the states and be available in March with the EMEA coming in at 799 EUR in March as well. We are very interested in seeing how this Chromebook performs once it’s available on the retail market. That said, we were lucky enough to get a pre-production model from Acer yesterday and we are working on getting the first-look video together as soon as possible. Stay tuned for more on this Chromebook and more from our coverage of CES 2021.