Why I like the Slimbook but won’t keep it.

Why I like the Slimbook but won’t keep it.

I made a blog post a few days ago when I received my Slimbook Essential 16 and basically I was not happy with it. Now things have changed, some of them 180 degrees. But still not enough to keep it.

Why? How?

First of all, I need to take into account a few external factors:
1. I am in the middle finishing the TROM II documentary. I did not want to distract myself from it until April or so. I need to finish until May. The only reason I bought this laptop was because of a limited 150 Euros discount.
2. I work on many things, servers, stuff, including WebApe and I may have to take 2 new WebApe projects this month. Not a great idea to be distracted by a new laptop now.
3. I have TB of data and hundreds upon hundreds of packages and custom config files….moving them over to the new laptop will take me many many days.

Ok. What’s up with the Slimbook.

The build quality I am still not 100% liking it.

I got used to it. It still feels more like plastic than metal to me, feels super light and all of that, however using it for the past days I realized it is very well built (put together). Not bending, no flexing….really good. I opened it up after they allowed me to, and that made me like it much more. Inside, everything is well organized and very well put together. Feels more like a metal build now to me that I opened it up.

It is also fantastic that you can put up to 64GB of RAM and has 2 M2 slots that support at least 4TB if not 8…This is crucial for my needs. Also opening it up was so easy, I loved it. Unscrew a few screws and that’s it, the bottom cover can be easily removed. Great job with that!

Despite this, I am concerned that being so light and plasticy-feel, it will easily be damaged in time. But being so light is fantastic in terms of portability. Speaking of that, the charger is massive and will annoy you if you want this to be portable, which kinda makes it being so light, less relevant. If this had an AMD processor it would have made a lot more sense since right now the battery is not that great. Overall will last some 4-5h and I’ve been using the Slimbook app that allows you to switch to an energy saving profile. If you use the Nvidia card, even a bit, it drops down to half. Considering that batteries degrade quite fast, this is not a great beginning.

That keyboard…

I type a lot (I write books) and I need a decent keyboard. The keys are a bit too shallow for me, it feels a bit weird to type, but the worst part is that some key symbols are not centered as mentioned previously. After a few days of use I still did not get used to this. It looks weird especially at night when they are lighten-up. Looks like the laptop is tilted one side. The keys feel a bit “cheap” and not that “fun” to type on. Plus I HATE the numpad…I’d love a normal keyboard…big keys…centered….

The camera is usable or bad, like it is the case with most laptops. But probably no one uses them since all laptops have shitty cameras. And the speakers are ok.

That touchpad!

I hate touchpads – I can never use them. But Slimbook made me love their touchpad. It is an amazing experience. Smooth, glassy, HUGE. Makes it so easy to use it, even for someone like me not used to them. Great job with that. Tho, again, even that is a bit not centered which looks weird….

What about that screen?

At first I hated it because I thought it as washed-out. And it was, compared to my laptop and Sasha’s. But then I realized it was like that only when it came to blue-purple….the rest looked great. Just so happened that the default TROMjaro wallpaper was the most obvious in that regard. I then compared the Slimbook screen with our phones and other screens and it seems that my and Sasha’s laptops are the ones adding more contrast at times, for blue and purple. Anyway, the colors are probably more accurate on the Slimbook after all, but yeah many screens, many color variations…

In any case I ended up LOVING the screen. 16” and a 16:10 aspect ratio, with those thin bezels makes the perfect screen for me. For video editing, designing books, websites, you name it. Awesome. I can’t go back to any screen after this experience. So much so that this will be the first thing I’ll look for in a laptop.

A beast. But does it matter?

The core i7-12700H + Nvidia 3050ti make up for a great (on paper) hardware. However for the day to day use, even for me doing so many things at once, it makes exactly ZERO difference. Even on my laptop I can have hundreds of tabs opened, watch stuff, edit, whatever. Could make a difference in terms of video editing and code compilation. Unfortunately in Linux the GPU is almost never used. All in all, great hardware, but unless you do heavy video editing, code compilation, or game, you don’t need this.

Speaking of hardware….from my tests there is almost zero difference between a normal SSD that has like 1GB speeds r/w and these new M2 that have many GB speeds. Unless you posses hundreds of GB of media and copy them frequently….there is no difference. Just marketing.

Actually I’d say I have confirmed, for me at least, that fullhd screens are almost identical to any K screen for a 16” screen. M2 SSDs are as good as SSDs for pretty much most uses. And the difference in power (GPU and CPU wise) only matters for specific tasks. The vast majority of those are ok for the vast majority of people.



The Slimbook Executive 16 – things I like:
– lightweight, easy to carry around
– very well built
– great screen
– amazing touchpad
– great hardware
– perfect ports availability and slots
– easy to open and upgrade

Things I did not like:
– feels more like plastic than metal
– massive charger
– overall bad keyboard
– not a great battery life
– bad webcam in dimmer conditions
– bloody full of stickers
– extremely expensive

For 1750 Euros (1600 with the discount) I would definitely want a fully aluminum build, a good keyboard, and a decent battery. Maybe even a fingerprint reader….could be cool to have that and super useful.

I want to mention something unique and special about Slimbook: their support. You can talk to humans there, and they are super friendly. Many thanks for putting up with my many questions and helping me out. Stellar support.

Where from here?

I would like to see other laptops too. Lately I found 2 candidates but of course I will look for more. For example I found the Dell Inspiron 16 to be a great choice:

Comes in different hardware variations, even with AMD for some. That keyboard looks amazing from photos (no numpad). Centered touchpad and huge. All aluminium built, thin, even tho heavier.

The downside, max 34GB of RAM and I think max 3TB of SSD….fuckers…You can change these yourself but what I realized is that the vast majority of these well-built laptops have the RAM and storage soldered into the motherboard. No way to upgrade them. Such a fuckery.

Anyway, the second exciting choice is the Dell Inspiron 16 2 in 1:

Not as powerful as the Slimbook, but a lot more than mine. Can transform into a tablet and has a touchscreen. Although I may not use any, it is likely more solid since it is built for this. Sasha’s is similar to this, but at 13”, and I love it.

This one too has a 32GB RAM and 2TB SSD limit…

I can find these on ebay from 800 Euros to like 1.400 Euros. Much cheaper than the Slimbook. Even new are not more expensive than the Slimbook Executive 16.

Anyway, I will package the Slimbook and send it back. Then I’ll focus on TROM II and these next few months I’ll look to see if I can find better alternatives. There is a slim-chance I will buy the slim-book again 😀 . It was very interesting to have it around to test, and i went from “I won’t keep it” to “I’ll keep it” a day after another. Last night I was almost sure I’ll keep it. But I do not want to rush with this since it is an extremely expensive thing for me to buy. I don’t want to regret my decision.

Honestly if this Slimbook had a powerful AMD and was around 1k Euros, I would not have thought twice.

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