Teclast F7 hands-on: A lightweight notebook for mobile workers

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  • Editors' rating
    8.2 Excellent

Pros

  • Lightweight design
  • Two USB ports
  • Full-size keyboard

Cons

  • UI needs tidying up
  • Several build updates needed

Teclast is aiming high and aiming for the corporate market with its new F7 Tbook Notebook PC.

The Teclast F7 Tbook notebook PC is a lovely-looking device. Even its packaging is high quality. The outer carton has a hinged lid, and the F7 nestles in a well-constructed black card that surrounds with foam lid padding.

From the outside, the slim design and brushed aluminium outer casing is reminiscent of an Apple MacBook Air, although the F7 has a larger screen (14-inch compared to 13.3-inch MacBook).

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At 13.5mm, it is thinner than the 17mm MacBook Air, too, and weighs about 1.3kg.

Its dimensions are 315 x 208.5 x 13.5mm, and it feels sleek and smooth in the hand. I like the four silicone feet underneath the device that stops the F7 from sliding off my knee when I type.

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Like the Teclast X3Plus tablet, the F7 has an Intel Celeron N3450 Apollo Lake 14nm quad core processor (1.1GHz up to 2.2GHz), 6GB DDR3RAM, and a 128GB SSD. A 9th-generation HD graphics500 card runs at 700MHz burst frequency.

The screen has a lovely look and feel to it, maximising the screen real estate with a ratio of 16:9 and 1920x1080p resolution.

I particularly like the keyboard. It has a solid look and feel, with positive movement of the keys and good key travel. The keys have a powder coating look to them -- not smooth and shiny.

Greasy fingertip typing does not show on the keyboard, and the embossed lettering seems robust enough so that the letters will last over long term use.

The screen is not touch enabled. This is a Notebook PC with a permanently attached keyboard rather than a touch tablet with an external keyboard like the Tbook 16 Pro.

The trackpad is a good size and has a positive right/left mouse click at the bottom of the pad. There is a 2-megapixel front camera for videoconferencing calls, which will also take images and record video.

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Behind silicone inserts at each side of the PC, there are USB 3.0 ports. There is also a micro HDMI slot, a TF expansion card slot (up to 128GB), and 3.5mm headphone socket in addition to the power port.

The F7 runs Windows 10 version 10.0.15063 with dual 2.4GHz and 5GHz Wi-Fi. Office 365 is already installed on the PC -- ready to trial, activate, or buy.

Sound from the on-board dual-speakers is good for such a slim device, with fairly good bass and a good range of sound.

Battery life from the 4900mAh battery is good, and it takes about four hours to charge fully. This battery has less capacity than the X98 Plus II tablet, but it performs adequately.

There are a couple of things that need to be tidied up from the base Windows 10 build.

Frustratingly, you will need to spend quite a lot of time applying all the recommended cumulative updates to the base Windows 10 build before you install all of your apps.

An icon called BurnIn test, probably a remnant from the OEM build, appears on the Start screen, but it does not do anything when clicked.

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The Office 2016 icons have additional Chinese characters on the Start menu. These are small niggles that can easily be remedied.

I like this notebook PC. It could easily replace my main laptop. It is fast enough for most office tasks, light enough to carry around in my bag, and the battery will last me most of the day when I am out and about.

At around $280, the F7 is a good-performing addition to your tech arsenal.

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