When comparing Librem 15 vs Acer Swift 3 SF314-51-57CP, the Slant community recommends Librem 15 for most people. In the question“What are the best laptops for Linux?” Librem 15 is ranked 9th while Acer Swift 3 SF314-51-57CP is ranked 13th.
Ranked in these QuestionsQuestion Ranking
Pro Built with security in mind starting from each chip placed onto the motherboard
Pro Optional physical kill switches for microphone/camera and wireless/bluetooth
Pro Good connectivity
3 USB 3.0 (one being type C) and 2 USB 2.0 with the HDMI feels very nice to have on such a lightweight laptop. Sadly no Ethernet port, otherwise it would have been perfect.
Pro Good keyboard
Keyboards are usually bad on laptops, companies reusing small version ones on bigger size laptop with big paddings. Purism managed a good quality and use every bit of space to get a keyboard that feels good to use.
Pro Runs privacy focused software
Librem runs PureOS, a privacy focused operating system, and runs software that respects your rights.
Pro Good performance for the price
The Swift 3 performs quite well for the price and laptop class it belongs to. Everyday tasks are handled without problem, multitasking is not a problem neither, and it can also play some lightweight games (DoTA, LoL, Team Fortress 2) at decent framerates as well as some more demanding software such as Photoshop and Matlab without overheating the hardware or lagging.
Pro Great trackpad
The trackpad is a bit larger than average and feels great to the touch, albeit a bit rougher than most trackpads out there. It performs really well with standard swipes, taps, and gestures and has no stuttering or jumpiness.
Pro Great build quality
For an entry model, the Acer Swift 3 has great build quality. The chassis is solid and there's absolutely no bending in either the chassis or the hood. The outer case is built from aluminum and the inner chassis is made of plastic.
Pro Upgradeable storage
Unfortunately the CPU and RAM are soldered on the motherboard so they can't be upgraded, however the storage is not and can be easily swapped and upgraded if one needs to do so.
The Swift 3 is a pretty light and compact laptop. It weight around 3.35 lbs and is 0.7″ thick. The screen size is 14" which is well within the small category as far as laptop screens go.
Pro Decent keyboard
The keys have a slightly concave shape and a soft finishing which makes them feel great to touch and they also provide pretty good feedback.
Pro Good battery life
The Swift 3 can get a good 10 hours of use (sometimes even more) with simple tasks such as web browsing or watching videos. This is true for both the models with i3 and i5 CPUs.
Con It's quite expensive
You'll be paying a higher price for Purism's commitment to secure, privacy, and freedom respecting electronics.
Con Wifi is weak
Any other laptop or smartphone will have better signal than the Librem 15. Having a strong signal is very rare (you need to be in the same room within 10m of the router), it is still working but a Ethernet port as back-up would have been very much appreciated. This is probably due to the FOSS constraint for the hardware.
Con Speakers are bad
The sound feels really wrong, the trebles are way too high and there is no bass.
Con Touchpad not centered
Touchpad is not centered due to addition of little used numeric keypad keys on the right.
Con Comes with some bloatware
The Swift 3 comes with some bloatware out of the box which may influence performance.
Con Fairly noisy
The Acer Swift 3 has two small fans which sit on the CPU and GPU. Unfortunately they are rather agressive and start spinning even at low temperatures. Even something as simple as opening a browser will prompt both fans to start spinning quite fast. If you also keep in mind that both these fans have a fairly high pitched hum, then it's soon clear that this laptop is not the quietest on the market.