I love comparing Chromebooks because it makes me realise the choice we have when considering buying a new Chromebook is much better than it was a few years ago.
Today I’m reviewing the Asus C434, which is the latest Chromebook from Asus against the HP x 360. The Asus C434 was built to replace the Asus C302 and I think Asus has done a really good job with that.
However, the only issue I can see at the moment is the performance of the Asus C434, and this may just mean the HP x 360 offers more because of this. Let’s not jump the gun though because there is more to consider than performance alone.
Something to take into consideration is that I’m comparing the HP x 360 against the Asus C434 basic model. At the time of writing this, the basic model is the only one available.
BUILD QUALITY – Asus C434 vs HP x 360
The build quality of a Chromebook may not be too important for some and for others it’s one of the things they look out for when buying a new Chromebook. For me, the build quality is always important but only if the specs of the machine offers great performance to match.
The Asus C434 is definitely a great looking Chromebook. It comes with a 14-inch display in a 13-inch chassis, so it’s relatively compact in that respect. The all-over aluminium body gives it a super cool look and adds that little bit of class to the laptop. That all over aluminium design also means the Asus C4343 is a sturdy well built Chromebook. It not only looks great but you also know you have a Chromebook in your hands that is well built.
Another great touch with the Asus C434 is how the display when open helps to elevate the keyboard. This is a really nice touch and it makes typing on the Asus C434 much easier than a keyboard that is parallel to the desk you are working on.
When it comes to the build quality of the HP x 360. Well, it has a challenge on its hands when competing against the Asus C434. Do not get me wrong. I personally like the build quality of the HP x 360 but it is no match to the Asus C434.
I have always liked HPs simplistic approach to the look of their laptops. It’s really nice to see that their Chromebooks look no different from their laptops running Microsoft Windows. This removes the issue we had a few years ago where Chromebooks always looked a little out of place.
The HP x 360 comes with an aluminium lid with the standard HP logo at the centre. The aluminium design continues on the inside as well. However, when you turn the device on its belly you will notice that the underneath of the HP x 360 is plastic.
Generally speaking I would never see this as an issue because the rest of the Chromebook is aluminium. However, we need to remember this is a direct comparison with the Asus C434, and that all over aluminium body cannot be ignored.
Build quality winner – The Asus C434
Although the HP x 360 is by no means ugly it simply cannot compete with the Asus C434. The all-over aluminium design of the Asus C434 not only means it looks nicer, but its also provides you with a sturdier device.
You also need to consider that the HP x 360 is slightly heavier than the Asus C434 and is ever so slightly thicker. The Asus C434 is just 15.7mm thick and weighs 1.45kg compared to the HP at 16mm thick and weighing in at 1.68kg. These are not huge differences but it’s another reason that gives the Asus C434 the edge on build quality.
We all look for great performance when buying any type of computer. After all, it’s surely one of the most important factors. When looking at whether a Chromebook can perform you need to think ahead. We are not just looking at how it can cope today, you need to consider how it will perform three years from now.
It’s important to remember this comparison is against the basic model of the Asus C434 and the higher end model of the HP x 360. There is a lower-end model of the HP x 360 with similar specs to the Asus C434 basic model. However, the price of the HP x 360 higher-end model is similar to the Asus C434 basic model. Therefore, I think it’s reasonable to compare both devices.
The Asus C434 comes with an Intel M3 8th generation processor. It’s a fast processor at 1.1GHz and is capable of speeds of up to 3.4GHz and comes with a 4MB cache.
Personally speaking, the Asus C434 processor is let down by the amount of RAM on offer here. The Asus offers just 4GB of RAM, which may have been fine a few years ago but is pretty entry level today.
The Chromebook offers much more now than just a device to surf the internet. At the moment Chromebooks with 4GB of RAM can cope perfectly well with Android Apps. The issue I see is when Android Apps start to be specifically developed to take advantage of the Chromebook. This is when you may just see that 4GB of RAM is not enough.
The HP x 360 comes with an Intel i3 processor. The Intel i3 is the entry level processor in the ‘i’ processor range. However, it still offers more than the Intel M3 of the Asus C434. It’s capable of 2.20GHz but can provide a maximum of 3.40GHz. This is the same maximum clock speed as the Asus C434 M3 processor.
However, the Intel i3 offers a much higher base rate clock speed of 2.20GHz compared to 1.1GHz. It’s true that both processors are capable of 3.40GHz, but the base speed is still important. The HP x 360 is offering twice as much base speed.
It’s also important to point out that the Intel i3 processor on offer from the HP x 360 copes with memory (RAM) much better than the Intel M3 processor available on the Asus C434. This means you will have fewer issues with a bottleneck between the processor and RAM when using the HP x 360 compared to the Asus C434.
If that is not enough to think about when it comes to the performance. Another huge difference is the RAM. The HP x 360 comes with 8GB of RAM, which is twice the amount of RAM you get from the Asus C434.
Performance winner – The HP x 360
There is no contest when it comes to performance. The HP x 360 with the Intel i3 processor and 8GB of RAM outperforms the Asus C434 in every aspect.
THE DISPLAY – Asus C434 vs HP x 360
The Asus C434 boasts a 14-inch display that supports full HD 1,080 x 1,920 resolution. It also has great colour reproduction and you can view the Chromebook from any angle without any deterioration in image quality. This is due to the Asus C434 IPS panel.
The bezels on the Asus C434 are just 5mm thick on each side of the display. This means you get really small borders around the display, which brings an added expensive elegant look to the laptop. The brightness you get from the Asus C434 will not disappoint either should you need to use the laptop in sunny conditions.
The display you get on the HP x 360 Chromebook is very similar to the Asus C434. Again you get a 14-inch display offering full HD resolution of 1,080 x 1,920 resolution. You get a slightly brighter display with the HP x 360 compared to the Asus C434. However, both displays offer enough brightness for most conditions.
Viewing angles and colours are vivid, which again is thanks to the IPS panel that comes with the HP x 360. I have mentioned this many times before but for those who are still unsure. Whenever you are buying a Chromebook that is not in the budget arena, then you need to ensure the display comes with an IPS panel. Settling for anything less when spending over £400 / $400 is a big mistake.
Display Winner – Asus C434
Both displays offer a great image, so there was not much between them both. You do get a slightly brighter display with the HP Chromebook but we cannot ignore those 5mm bezels you get with the Asus C434.
Strictly speaking, the bezel has nothing to do with the display quality. However, being that both are almost identical I decided to choose the Asus C434. I simply cannot get enough of those amazingly slim bezels.
Storage has become a lot more important over the last couple of years and this is because of Android Apps. Before Android Apps we did not need to worry too much about local storage. This is because the Chromebook is a cloud computer, which integrates seamlessly with Google Drive. However, Android Apps install directly onto your local storage, so you need to consider the storage space on offer.
The Asus C434 offers 128GB, which is a decent amount of storage for a Chromebook. You will be able to easily install plenty of Android Apps and local files without any problems.
The HP x 360 comes with 64GB of storage space. Although this is not anything to worry about. It’s a little disappointing to see from a Chromebook at this price. You will still be able to install plenty of Android Apps and local files without a problem. The question is whether this amount of storage is going to be enough in a couple of years from now.
Storage Winner – Asus C434
CONNECTIVITY & KEYBOARD
Both the Asus C434 and HP x 360 offer good connectivity. Both come with a USB type A port and two USB type C ports. Also, if you have an issue with storage later down the line then you will be happy to know that both Chromebooks also comes with a Micro SD slot. This makes it easy to add extra storage at a relatively low price.
I love the keyboard on the Asus C434, which is the same offering as what was provided on the Asus C302. The key travel and backlit keyboard is great to type with day or night.
The HP x 360 also comes with a backlit keyboard. You could easily type on the HP x 360 all day without any problems. However, I still feel the Asus keyboard offers more.
Connectivity & Keyboard Winner – Asus C434
Both Chromebooks offer similar connectivity. It’s also without question that both keyboards on offer are perfect for typing. However, I’m still swaying towards the Asus C434 when it comes to the keyboard technology on offer, which means the Asus C434 wins this category by a slight margin.
It’s really hard to pick a winner because I love both of these Chromebooks. If you were going on looks alone then the Asus C434 would win hands down. However, if you look at the overall package the HP x 360 Chromebook is the better laptop here.
This is mainly due to the performance. The Asus C434 is a fast performing Chromebook but the 4GB of RAM is a real issue for a Chromebook in this price range. It’s worth remembering this comparison is against the basic model of the Asus C434, as the more higher-end models have yet to be released.
The HP x 360 with its Intel i3 processor outperforms the Asus C434. The base rate speed of the HP x 360 offers double the speed and also comes with 8GB of RAM. The performance offered on the HP x 360 makes it the winner of this comparison test.
So now you need to decide, which one is right for you. It’s a difficult choice for anyone who likes the look of the Asus C434 compared to the HP x 360. This is not saying the HP look ugly because it does not. The problem is can you really ignore the difference in performance?
If you are still unsure why not have a read of the reviews