Jumper EZBook 3 Pro

Chinese manufacturer Jumper is part of a new wave of ambitious laptop/tablet startups that want to flood the world with affordable quality products straight from their factories in Shenzhen and elsewhere in mainland China.

The EZBook 3 Pro (otherwise known as the LB10) is the latest product from Jumper and is an iteration of the EZBook 3 and the EZBook 2 that we looked at last October.

Like its predecessor, the EZBook 3 Pro doesn’t hide the source of its inspiration. It is clearly very heavily influenced by Apple’s ground-breaking MacBook Air, more specifically the 13-inch model.

The EZBook 2 was cheap (£164 at the time of writing – that’s around $220) but the EZBook 3 Pro hikes the price up higher to £208 ($280).

Design

Part of the reason why Jumper jacked up the price is that it has shifted to a full metal body with a chrome effect edge running all around the chassis, which reinforces the premium look of the device while making it even sturdier than the previous model. No complaints here – especially given the £200 price tag of this laptop.

It is both lighter and smaller thanks partly to the use of a 13.3-inch display, as opposed to the 14-inch screen of the EZBook 2. At 315 x 209 x 15mm, its footprint is slightly bigger than an A4 sheet, and at just under 1.4kg, it is still eminently portable.

Look at it sideways and you’ll recognize the tapered profile made popular by the MacBook Air. There are three ports on each side of the EZBook 3 Pro: two USB 3.0 ports, one microSD card, one HDMI and one audio port, along with a proprietary power connector.

As with most MacBook Air clones, the power button is located on the top right-hand side of the keyboard; expect no big surprises from the latter (or from the touchpad for that matter). A smaller screen has led to some unwanted compromises like the lack of Home/End/PageUp/PageDown keys (you can actually use the arrow keys for these instead) or the sad omission of the right CTRL key.

Note that the keyboard – a 78-key affair – is a US model and cannot be swapped for a UK version.

The three status lights are located just under the single hinge alongside two microphones. Underneath are four rubber feet, two speaker grilles and 10 screws which hold the bottom base together. Remove these and you’ll find the components and a big battery that occupies half the accessible area.

Brownie points to Jumper for choosing a thin bezel for the display in order to cut down on the device’s size as much as humanly possible. However, this is no Dell XPS 13 when it comes to bezel thinness.

Specifications

There are no surprises here. The components used by the EZBook 3 Pro are very similar to what we’ve seen from the likes of Chuwi’s LapBook 12.3, the Teclast X3 Plus, the Chuwi Hi13 or the Onda Xiaoma 31.

Blame this lack of diversity on economies of scale and the fact that Intel has quietly moved away from the Atom brand (the last X-series consumer processor dates back to early 2016), with the chip giant now pushing the Celeron CPU as the preferred entry-level processor.

A few points of interest: this notebook uses a generic nCard eMMC storage module and the Celeron N3450 is a cracking little processor which should be as powerful as a 5th-generation Core M CPU like the M-5Y31 which powered the first Apple MacBook, especially as it has four real cores and a higher base frequency.

With the processor having a 6W TDP and 2MB cache, along with integrated Intel HD Graphics 500 (clocked at 200MHz, bursting to 700MHz) plus dual channel RAM, the EZBook 3 Pro should provide a very decent entry-level laptop baseline.

Note that while Gearbest’s spec page says that you can upgrade the memory to 8GB, we doubt it given the size of the device, plus the fact that the two channels are already populated with 3GB of DDR-1600 system memory.

In use

The IPS display produced realistic colors with decent viewing angles. It’s matte meaning that you should be able to view content on it outdoors, although it is not particularly bright. A full HD resolution on a 13.3-inch display is our preferred combination, resulting in a higher than average pixel density, which translates into sharper pictures and text.

The keyboard exhibits some flex, which shouldn’t be of concern unless you tend to type forcefully. Keys are reasonably spaced and have a good feedback/balance without being too harsh or spongy. It’s good to see full size Shift keys, but it’s a shame that there is no ‘print screen’ button.

The touchpad is responsive as well, with maybe a bit too much difference between the palm rest level and its surface for our liking. Clicking on the right or left button does produce a noticeable sound, which is what we’d expect (and want). Jumper also bundles a free piece of software called Touchpad-blocker which blocks accidental clicks while typing on the keyboard.

As expected, you won’t be wowed by the sound coming out of the speakers or the quality of the full HD webcam; the latter protrudes from the top of the display bezel, which is something of an oddity.

Performance

The Celeron CPU helps the EZBook 3 Pro best any competing Atom-based devices with ease when it comes to sheer compute power. On the downside, the storage subsystem is another story altogether – seldom have we seen something as slow as this. You can, however, replace it thanks to a free M.2 slot (although sadly this isn’t easily accessible like on the Onda Xiaoma 31). Still, clearly this is a major Achilles’ heel for this otherwise very capable laptop.

As for battery life, we managed a reasonable 5 hours 9 minutes on our standard YouTube count-up video test at 100% brightness on default power saving settings (but with sleep modes disabled).

Final verdict

The Jumper EZBook 3 Pro already faces some stiff competition but remains one of our favorites alongside Chuwi’s LapBook 12.3 and the Onda Xiaoma 31, especially as it is, at the time of writing, the cheapest model to sport the standard 6GB/64GB combo.

It delivers a punchy performance especially in this price range with the added benefit of a superb design. We loved the keyboard (but yearn for the missing keys), applaud Jumper for offering some upgradability options and can only give a big thumbs up for the design and keen pricing here.

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