NEW YORK—Acer is revamping its budget gaming line with the Acer Nitro 5 and Nitro 7, packing them with 9th-generation Intel Core processors, but making some modest compromises when it comes to screen resolution and graphics. There’s no word on price and availability as of yet, but we had a chance to check these 15- and 17-inch gaming notebooks out at an Acer press conference.
One of the most interesting choices that Acer decided was to stick with Nvidia GeForce GTX GPUs instead of an RTX GPU, which will presumably keep the price of the Nitro 7 and Nitro 5 down.
|Row 0 - Cell 0||Acer Nitro 7||Acer Nitro 5|
|Display||15.6-inch, 1920 x 1080 144Hz||15.6-inch and 17.3-inch, 1920 x 1080 144Hz|
|CPU||Up to 9th Gen Intel Core processors|
|RAM||Up to 16GB (upgradable to 32GB)|
|Graphics||Up to Nvidia GeForce GTX graphics|
|Storage||Up to 1TB SSD and 2TB HDD|
|Ports||One USB Type-C, three USB 3.0, HDMI, a 3.5 mm audio jack, Kensington lock slot, RJ45 Ethernet|
|Size||14.31 x 10.22 x 0.78~0.91 inches||15-inch: 14.31 x 10.04 x 1.02 inches 17-inch: 15.87 x 11.02 x 1.06 inches|
|Weight||5.51 pounds||15-inch: 4.85~5.07 pounds 17-inch: 5.73~5.95 pounds|
The Acer Nitro 5 and Nitro 7 can be configured with a 9th Gen Intel Core processor, the latest Nvidia GeForce GTX GPUs (at least a GTX 1050), 16GB of RAM (upgradable to 32GB), a 1TB SSD and a 2TB HDD.
Both systems have a decent amount of ports, including one USB Type-C port, three USB 3.0 ports, an HDMI port, a 3.5 mm audio jack, a Kensington lock slot and an RJ45 Ethernet port.
The 15-inch Nitro 5 features a thin and light design, measuring at 5 pounds and 1-inch thick, while the 17-inch Nitro 5 is slightly bigger but doesn't stray too far, at 5.8 pounds and 1.1 inches thick. The Nitro 5 sports neat rigid accents on its plastic lid and a red hinge engraved with the Nitro logo on it.
Meanwhile, the Nitro 7 slims down even more than its sibling, at 0.8 inches, but packs on some weight as a result, at 5.5 pounds. The Nitro 7 showcases a gorgeous aluminum chassis with a sleek silver hinge. The best part about its design is that it doesn't give a single hint that it's a gaming laptop (from the front at least).
MORE: Best Acer Laptops
The biggest issue I have with both the Nitro 7 and Nitro 5 is that they are stylish and sexy on the outside, but suffer from the gaudy gamer aesthetic on the inside. Both systems had a fully red accented keyboard topped off with red back-lit keyboards -- it was an eyesore.
The typing experience on the keyboard wasn't all that impressive either, especially for a gaming laptop, since each key felt kind of mushy and resistant.
The Nitro 5 and Nitro 7 will feature a 1920 x 1080 144Hz panel with a speedy 3-millisecond response time. You'll notice the lower resolution compared to 4K panels, especially when playing games with the details turned up. Final Fantasy XV was pulled up on some of the laptops, and I noticed that Ignis' blonde spiky hair didn't really stand out as much as it should have.
I also felt the constant urge to increase the brightness on the panels, but all the machines were already maxed out. At the very least, both laptops had pretty slim bezels.
One of the more interesting claims that Acer has made is that the Nitro 7 and Nitro 5 (17-inch) can last up to 7 hours on a charge. And supposedly the 15-inch Nitro 5 can last up to 8 hours. While it's not impossible for gaming laptops to reach that level of battery life, it's quite uncommon and certainly worth praise if that claim holds up on our test.
We're excited to play with the Acer Nitro 7 and Nitro 5 when it eventually rolls through our lab, so in the meantime stay tuned for our full review and benchmarks of these budget gaming laptops.
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Rami Tabari is an Editor for Laptop Mag. He reviews every shape and form of a laptop as well as all sorts of cool tech. You can find him sitting at his desk surrounded by a hoarder's dream of laptops, and when he navigates his way out to civilization, you can catch him watching really bad anime or playing some kind of painfully difficult game. He’s the best at every game and he just doesn’t lose. That’s why you’ll occasionally catch his byline attached to the latest Souls-like challenge.