Laptops with 4K displays are becoming increasingly common, but high-resolution displays are usually an expensive add-on for already-expensive computers.
The Chuwi LapBook Plus, on the other hand, is a laptop that sells for under $500 and which features a mix of budget and premium specs — including a 4K display.
It’s up for pre-order from Gearbest for $440 and has a suggested retail price of $499.
While the 4K display with 100 percent sRGB color gamut and HDR support is probably the laptop’s most striking feature, it also has a few other selling points, including an aluminum-magnesium chassis, a backlit keyboard, and dual M.2 slots for up to two SSDs.
The least impressive thing about this laptop is probably its processor: it’s powered by an Intel Atom x7-E3950 Apollo Lake chip. That’s a 1.6 GHz quad-core processor with a 12 watt TDP and Intel HD 505 graphics.
While Chuwi says the processor offers “2 times stronger performance” than a more recent Intel Celeron N4100 Gemini Lake processor, that’s not really saying much since the Celeron N4100 is a chip often found in laptops that sell for $200 – $300.
Chuwi says you should be able to get up to 9 hours of battery life from the laptop’s included 36.5 Wh battery, but I suspect real-world usage will be far less than that when using a machine with a 4K display and a 12 watt processor.
Still, if you’re looking for a 4K laptop on a budget, the Chuwi LapBook is about as cheap as it gets for now.
Here’s a run-down of the key specs in bullet-point form:
- Intel Atom x7-E3950 processor
- 15.6 inch, 4K UHD IPS display with HDR support and 100% sRGB color gamut
- 8GB LPDDR3 RAM
- 256GB M.2 SSD + second M.2 slot
- 36.5 Wh battery
- 802.11ac WiFi
- Bluetooth 4.0
- USB 3.0, USB 2.0, micro HDMI, headset, and power jacks
- MicroSD card reader (Up to 128GB)
- 2.0MP webcam
- Stereo speakers
- 3.4 pounds
Update: NotebookCheck has a review of the Chuwi LapBook Plus and confirms that it looks great, has an excellent display, but offers lousy performance due to the sluggish processor. As expected, battery life is particularly bad, with the system getting around 3.5 hours of real-world usage time while screen brightness is set to 40 percent.