Acer Swift 5 overview: Excellent portability in a well-rounded package deal
Acer’s luxurious Swift 7 laptop computer has definitely grabbed headlines, however its wallet-wilting asking value will scare off many would-be consumers. The Swift 5 – the center little one of the corporate’s ultrabook vary – delivers the identical slimmed-down portability at a fraction of the value.
READ NEXT: Greatest laptop computer 2017
Acer Swift 5 overview: What you must know
Whereas the Swift 7 could be the golden little one of Acer’s 2017 lineup, the Swift 5 affords related portability and efficiency at a less expensive beginning value. Inside this ultraportable laptop computer you’ll discover Kaby Lake Intel Core i5-7200U or i7-7500U processors, with 8GB of RAM and a selection of 256GB or 512GB SSD. All fashions ship with a Full HD, 1,920 x 1,080 decision show – as with the Swift 7, there’s no spangly 4K possibility right here.
Acer Swift 5 overview: Value and competitors
The Swift 5’s £900 entry level teeters near premium laptop computer territory, nevertheless it undercuts most of its opponents by a substantial margin. Dell’s equally outfitted XPS 13 will set you again a lofty £1,249; Apple’s latest MacBook Professional is one other various on the similar excessive value. In case you’re extra fascinated about a Home windows 2-in-1, Acer’s Swap 5 is an effective guess at £900.
Acer Swift 5 overview: Design
The Swift 7’s luxurious, barely-there chassis, drawing inspiration from HP’s gorgeous Spectre 13, was the star of the present at its New York unveiling earlier this 12 months.
The Swift 5 isn’t fairly so elegant. Its black anodised aluminium keyboard encompass isn’t too dangerous, with its nice brushed end, however the remainder of the gadget feels prefer it’s been cobbled collectively from numerous elements of different machines. The ridged lid each seems to be and feels bargain-basement, regardless of being product of steel, whereas the display screen bezels and underside are surrounded with a soft-touch plastic. It doesn’t add as much as a coherent design.
Nonetheless, even when the Swift 5 seems to be like a Frankenstein’s Monster of a machine, construct high quality feels reassuringly strong. And the design is perfection in the case of portability. It’s mild sufficient to hold round effortlessly in a satchel or backpack, tipping the scales at simply 1.3kg, and its 15mm slimness matches Apple’s not too long ago refreshed Macbook Professional for a fraction of the value. As for ports, you’ll discover one USB-C connector for charging, two USB three ports, a single HDMI socket, a three.5mm headset port and an SD card slot.
Acer Swift 5 overview: Keyboard and touchpad
The Swift 5 is kind of comfy to kind on, however a couple of minor niggles mar the expertise. Some keys are awkwardly cramped – notably, the half-size left shift secret is squeezed up uncomfortably towards the backstroke key – and the motion is maybe a bit too squishy for my tastes.
The trackpad nonetheless is properly sized, providing ample room on your Home windows 10 multi-touch finger prospers. It’s as dependable as it’s best to anticipate in 2017, and there’s a delicate aluminium chamfered edge to it too, which makes it simpler on the fingertips if you bump your fingers into the edges.
Acer Swift 5 overview: Show
Slimming down the display screen bezels has allowed Acer to squeeze an expensive 14in show right into a body that isn’t a lot greater than your typical 13.3in laptop computer. The bezel-less design isn’t authentic – the Dell XPS 13 has been doing it for a number of years – nevertheless it’s at all times spectacular to see it applied effectively.
The shiny 1,920 x 1,080 panel is nearly as much as snuff. Most brightness is a greater than first rate 363cd/m2 (a bit brighter than the XPS 13), however sRGB color protection lets issues down a bit at simply 82%. If we’re being choosy, we’d should say that colors appeared a tad muted general, with iffy color replica throughout the board, and significantly with darker reds and blues.
Acer Swift 5 overview: Efficiency and battery life
The Swift 5 is available in two totally different configurations, powered by both a Core i5 or Core i7 processor. The mannequin I examined got here outfitted with a Core i5-7200U processor clocked at 2.5GHz, with 8GB of RAM and 256GB SSD. The pricier Core i7 mannequin has a better clock fee and comes with a 512GB SSD, however the modifications finish there.
Similar to its cheaper Swift three sibling, the Swift 5 opts for a low-powered U-series processor, catering for thermal effectivity over uncooked processing energy. Consequently, we had been anticipating above-average battery life, partnered with respectable – if not distinctive – efficiency.
Our demanding 4K benchmarks confirmed our expectations. The Swift 5’s general rating of 45 is simply shy of Dell’s pricier XPS 13 (which scored 50), however there’s greater than sufficient grunt right here for many of your each day duties. Much more strenuous purposes needs to be usable with out the system grinding to a complete halt.
Importantly, the Swift 5 gained’t allow you to down in the case of longevity both. It lasted 9hrs 12minutes in our steady video playback check, with the display screen set to our normal brightness of 170cd/m2. That’s roughly 90 minutes longer than both the Dell XPS 13 or the 2017 MacBook Professional.
Acer Swift 5 overview: Verdict
Acer’s Swift 5 is a kind of uncommon gadgets that defies categorisation. At £900 it’s onerous to name it a high-end laptop computer, but it beats a lot pricier competitors by way of each uncooked efficiency and battery life.
My solely criticism is that its weird mishmash of a design gained’t be to everybody’s tastes; it seems to be clunky subsequent to the smooth unibody design of its Swift 7 sibling. Total although Acer’s Swift 5 completely straddles the road between portability and efficiency, making it a powerful challenger to Dell’s ongoing XPS dominance.