Acer Aspire S13 Review

Acer manufactures notebooks for a lifetime. E ‘was the first company to move on Ultrabook market is the one that counts the series longest (Aspire S7, from two years among the best), he continued to believe in class even when it meant only take risks. To say they are not surprised by the excellent impressions I had in these 10 days of testing with Aspire S13, the newest.

Yet the conditions were not at all obvious. A 999 Euros in Europe (IPS panel configuration with non-touch, Skylake Core i5, 8 GB of RAM and 256 GB SSD) this ultraportable could end up asking too many sacrifices in exchange for lack of real, maybe below average range, poor screen, a little sliding touchpad. Or he could really be the work laptop or ideal studio, practical, old-fashioned, is recommended in the price list is made in the everyday.

And ‘indeed the case: Aspire S13 gone does not force compromises, has no technical problems or constructive (perhaps the ointment is the thickness of the cover, very thin with a creaking effect), use standard-size doors and a replaceable memory SSD, has a ‘battery life of 6 comfortable hours in Wi-Fi use stress, and 8 hours in use lightweight Internet or partially offline – maybe by train to write papers or watch a movie.

The test configuration has S5-371 code. He Core i7-6500U CPU and SSD Skylake Liteon CV1 512 GB. Costa 1099 € list and is the most handsome on the market. Like the other from 899 EUR, has 8 GB of RAM in Dual Channel and Wi-Fi ac chip Qualcomm QCA6174 (values averaged over Iperf, look at the table below), two USB 3.0 ports, a USB-C 3.1 by 5 Gbps (no Thunderbolt) and the Intel HD GPU 520 (GT2) with 24 processors.

On a 13.3 IPS matte Full HD screen, very bright and without automatic sensor, and with a SATA 3 SSD M.2 529 and 460 MB / s, super responsive in 4K files, start Windows 10 in 7 seconds off, open Photoshop in a moment, indexes 2 GB of photos and video on Adobe Lightroom in the range you see the minute 4:50 of the video review. 3DMark, have 6210 points in the Cloud Gate tests, and 876 of 3717 on skydriver FireStrike – too much for the integrated GPU.

And ‘from a hardware Ultrabook top, and is reliable in the contexts in the long run as demonstrated by the graphs of temperature, CPU usage, and operating frequency. There is no thermal throttling track. The maximum temperature of the core reaches 72 ° C but usually remains quiet below 50 ° C. The keyboard is around 32 ° C, with peaks at 39 ° C in the upper part during the benchmarks and the games. The ventilator does not often start, but it is small and fast and then makes a whistling sound that you can perceive. It ‘a behavior that could be modified in future software upgrade; at this time there is a new BIOS 1.0.3 but its changelog is generic and not detailed.

To summarize, if you really do not want to lose yourself for a few minutes in the graphs below, it is really a good machine in practical use: it does what it should and has no weaknesses of design and construction defects.

Further down you will find 2 thermal images (reactor effect!) And other photos taken at the open laptop, without the bottom. Disassemble it is only a matter of bolts, traditional. Take the case of the CMOS battery, all thermal pads applied on the components, the modularity of the battery and, in fact, the size of the fan. But keep in mind that mine is a sample of pre-production, probably less refined the production models.

The keyboard is excellent. It has a low stroke but an important rebound due to the metal plate that is a little below. Leaves you write fluently, has well spaced keys, it has the SHIFT and CTRL large far left, where it belongs. And ‘flush with the wrist rest because he resides in a recessed area in the rest, and this makes sure that the fingers arrive at the keys with a push. I would have moved the power button at the top right, yes, but it is one of the most comfortable keyboards last period.

Touchpad fluid, he too like all new-generation Windows 10. Inset, surrounded by chrome, 150 x 65 mm. But it is a less valuable in the touchpad click buttons: need firm pressure and noisy that ends up being imprecise in certain operations. Select text by pressing your finger to move it then it becomes complicated if you do not practice. Even the front camera is not memorable, it must be said. Ok for Skype chat, but it ends there. Excellent front microphone installed because the right of the Enter key, not on the edge of the laptop.

But overall I return to the opening speech. Aspire S13 is as good as Aspire S7, but much cheaper and advisable. It has no flaws, has a good Full HD display for outdoor use, for example by train, comes in configurations that allow you to do everything from video editing with dual screen to the simple management of Office documents with low power consumption and a ‘ 8-hour autonomy, has a good sound, is 15 mm thick, weighs as much as the others – 1400 grams, has the backlit keyboard, has a hinge that tilts more than necessary.

A Dell XPS 13 hand configuration (FHD, i5, 8, 256) costs 1249 EUR, 400 EUR more. A similar Asus UX303 (FHD, i7, 8, 256) costs 1099 EUR and is 2 cm thick, it will decrease and no trace of aluminum. The Dell laptop has a more modern look, it’s true – probably the frames and the convenience of the palm rest of this Acer are the “bonds” that does not make it a top Ultrabook – but the practice is made. Whereas we talk about lists, net of offers and promotions online, I suggest you follow carefully the distribution of this Aspire S13 because it could be the final of this summer portable. The configuration of 999 Euros (IPS / i5 / 8/256) will be available in Italy in the coming weeks.