Avita Liber hands-on: A solid, good-looking notebook with fingerprint authentication

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  • Editors' rating
    8.1 Excellent

Pros

  • Backlit keyboard
  • Fingerprint authentication
  • Solid build

Cons

  • No touch screen

I like the look of the Avita Liber. For a start, it's not black or white. The Liber comes in a range of metallic colours, including light or dark blue, pink, lilac, green, silver, and gold (in the UK). The Liber I'm testing is patterned and quite eye-catching.

The Avita has introduced the Liber with several hardware configurations: 4GB/128GB, 8GB/128GB, and 8GB/256GB options. (The machine on my desk is a 4GB/128GB model).

Inside the Liber the processor is different from advertised -- perhaps I have the UK spec. It is supposed to have an Intel i5-750 processor and Intel HD graphics 615.

However, in the review model I received, there is a twin-core Intel i3-8130U CPU running at 2.20GHz (four logical processors), and an Intel UHD graphics 620 card with 1GB graphics memory. The notebook runs Windows 10 Home build 17763.

It has a nice 14-inch TFT screen with 1920 x 1080px resolution, a pleasing 16:9 aspect ratio, and the screen real estate is good. Its dimensions are 11.8 x 7.8 x 0.6 inches, and it weighs 2.51 pounds.

On the left-hand side of the notebook, there is a USB-A slot, 3.5mm headphone jack, and a TF card slot. There is also a Kensington security slot so you can lock the laptop to the desk.

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On the right-hand side, there is a mini HDMI slot, a USB-C slot, and a USB-A, along with a power supply port.

The bottom of the Liber has slots to dissipate heat, which does make the notebook PC hot if using the device for a long time. The rubber feet enable heat dissipation when using it on the desk.

It has two particularly nice features: A backlit keyboard, which is unobtrusive in low light, and a fingerprint reader for authentication. It also has a large 6.125-inch trackpad for accurate positioning. The keyboard keys are large to accommodate those with sausage fingers.

The fingerprint reader is a nice touch. It is easy to register a finger or two, and unlocking is faster than typing a PIN or using a picture password. The front-facing camera on the PC is adequate for webcam calls.

The Liber has a decent sound. Running Realtek High Definition audio, the on-board microphone is OK, albeit a little tinny if you like bass sounds. However, connected to speakers, the output is good.

I was impressed with the battery on this laptop. I found that it lasted for well over five hours on a normal day of work, and using it for my daily work was actually a nice experience. Some of the other laptops I have tried were nowhere near as good, and I have been glad to put them back into the box.

The only downside of the Liber is that the screen is not a touchscreen -- so, if you are used to using both keyboard and touch, you will miss the flexibility of both options. However, apart from the dirty fingerprints on the screen, you will soon get used to using the keyboard only. 

Apart from that, this is a nice, solid laptop with a good build and decent performance. It might not be as fast as other models if you are a heavy gamer, but for office and homework, this sub-$700 device will more than meet your needs.

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