The Acer Nitro 5 is a gaming laptop that leans towards the lower end of the pricing spectrum to make PC gaming more accessible to anyone on a budget.
The Nitro 5 sports a 3GHz Intel Core i5-8300H processor, a Nvidia GeForce GTX 1050 graphics card, 8GB of SDRAM, a 15.6-inch FHD LCD Acer ComfyView screen, and 1TB of HDD storage. It’s powered by a Coffee Lake CPU, notable for its Hyper-Threading, meaning that it is able to serve up two threads per processor core. This gives it additional processing power. This allowed for easy recording of gameplay without any lag or other interruptions.
While this machine has some decent specs, don’t go into this purchase expecting a top-tier gaming experience. The Acer Nitro 5 is one of the most affordable gaming laptops on the market right now and it shows in its shell and speakers. The outside of the laptop like the lid and casing feel fragile and the bezels around the screen are unnecessarily large. Not to mention that the cover, trackpad, and pretty much every other square inch of the device pick up fingerprints like nothing else I’ve seen. The speakers also have a tendency to peak and sound a little too much like static at higher volumes.
The backlight on the keyboard is only activated when plugged in and turn off after resting for just a few seconds, making it really hard to see the keys in the dark, but the keyboard does feel solid and the WASD keys are outlined in red as a nice nod to its status as a gaming laptop.
Design aside, the Acer Nitro 5 has really solid processing power. It powers up quickly and smoothly and has no trouble running a myriad of applications at once. It doesn’t let down in the gaming department either. Simple games without much of a range of motion started up and ran as smooth as butter. Games that required more rendering ran fine on the highest graphics setting. It even made for some stunning imagery in some cases. Don’t use the trackpad while playing games though. It required some force to register a click and performing a right click felt impossible without some manoeuvering and effort. It’s best used in conjunction with an external mouse.
Another notable feature of the Nitro 5 is its dual-fan ventilation and cooling system. You can use Acer’s NitroSense software to adjust the fan speeds for the CPU and GPU, also allowing for a CoolBoost during heavy use. The vents that allow the laptop to cool down are situated at the back of the device relatively out of the way of contact or obstruction. The fans do get loud and kick on rather quickly, but it’s not as noticeable as some other gaming laptops.
If you’re a hardcore gamer, it probably won’t meet your high demands for amazing graphics and processing power, but at entry-level it more than meets the needs of the average PC gamer.