Acer Nitro 5 Gaming Laptop Review: Bulky Value

The Acer Nitro 5 represents a great balance between price and performance. It's built sturdy and handles heat and battery life like a champ. However, it can be heavy and unwieldy, and its looks aren't for everyone. Owners of the Acer Nitro 5 will be satisfied with its excellent value, but if you're still shopping, keep in mind that it won't be a top performer, and that similarly priced alternatives will deliver better gaming performance.

Specifications

Display

15.6” FHD (1920x1080) IPS

CPU

Intel Core i7-8300H

Graphics

Nvidia GeForce GTX 1050 Ti 4GB

Memory

16GB DDR4 2667MHz

SSD

256GB M.2 SSD

HDD
Optical

Networking

Intel Dual Band Wireless-AC 9560, RJ-45 LAN Port

Video Ports

HDMI 2.0

USB Ports

USB 3.1 via Type-C x 2, USB 3.0 x 1, USB 2.0 x 2

Audio

(2) Speakers, Built-in digital microphone
Acer TrueHarmony
Plus Technology Sound System
Optimized Dolby Audio Premium sound enhancement

Camera

720p Video Camera

Battery

48 Wh

Power Adapter

150W

Operating System

Windows 10 Home

Dimensions (WxDxH)

15.35 x 10.47 x 10.5 inches
Weight

5.95 lbs

OtherRGB Illuminated Keyboard, Card Reader (6-in-1), Kensington Lock

Price (as configured)

$849.99

Exterior

The Nitro 5 has an attractive aesthetic, with bold red and black elements and a sleek, brushed-metal lid. The interior area features a smooth and slightly glossy plastic construction with more of Acer’s aggressive accenting while the bottom has some plain ventilation cutouts. 

The Nitro 5 is quite thick, which is to be expected of a gaming laptop. It’s over 1-inch thick and weighs nearly 6 pounds, which makes it unflattering for travel. If you do ever take it with you in public, it’ll be for rare occasions such as a LAN party. You’ll find two sets of exhaust vents on the rear edge for the CPU and GPU heat fins.

You’ll only find the absolute essential I/O ports on the Nitro 5. On the left, there’s a gigabit Ethernet port, a USB 3.1 via Type-C port, a USB 3.0 port and a multi-card reader. The right side features a headphone-out jack and two USB 2.0 ports.

Display

The Acer Nitro 5 features a 15.6” Full HD (1920x1080) IPS display with a matte finish. It covers 68 percent of the sRGB color gamut and measured an average of 273 nits on our light meter.

Input Devices

The Nitro 5 contains a full-length keyboard and number pad with red, translucent font, which allows the red backlighting to shine through. The keys are spaced well and have a springy feedback, which provides an enjoyable typing experience.

The touchpad consists of one large slate with left and right clicks. Although tracking is accurate, the touchpad surface has a slight amount of surface drag, which can be distracting. Additionally, the bottom half of the touchpad travels much further than the top half, allowing dust and debris to slip through the cracks.

Interior

Accessing the Nitro 5's components is quite simple. If all you need to do is reach the memory or SATA slot, then it's as simple as removing the left and/or right screws and pulling off the compartmentalized plate. However, the rest of the interior, including the M.2 SSD slot, is out of reach until you remove all of the screws securing the bottom panel to the chassis.

Once the bottom panel is removed, you'll get a better view of the internals. The cooling solution up top is composed of two heatpipes leading over the heat sinks to the exhaust fans on the left. Beneath the fans sits the Intel Dual Band Wireless-AC 9560, which handles the Nitro V's wireless capabilities. The M.2 SSD slot is on the far right, next to the memory. Finally, the 48 Wh battery is near the front lip.

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