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Acer Nitro 5 Gaming Laptop Review: Bulky Value

Price Analysis and Conclusion

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Versus the Competition

We have been looking forward to testing the Acer Nitro 5 to get more hands-on time with Coffee Lake-based laptops. The company has a solid track record of providing great value-oriented laptops, and the Nitro 5 is no exception. Our configuration with an Nvidia GeForce GTX 1050 Ti is available for $849.99, but a version with a GTX 1050 can be found for $100 cheaper.

Component-wise, the closest comparison we have to the Nitro 5 is the Sager NP6852. It offered similar gaming performance and much better CPU-bound performance thanks to its i7. However, it exhibited poor thermal dissipation. The NP6852 model is no longer available, but you can find the NP6853 with a similar configuration on Sager’s website starting at $1,040. The biggest difference is that it uses a six-core i7-8750H. (We may review the updated model, so stay tuned!)

But should you consider the Acer Aspire VX 15 if you’re strapped for cash? We’d recommend squeezing out an extra $50 in favor of the Nitro 5. The Aspire was the lowest end laptop we’ve ever tested, and the price reflects that. At $800, the Aspire suffers from both GPU and CPU bottlenecks, which can easily be solved by increasing your budget by $50 and opting for the Nitro 5.

Finally, if you’re looking to spend about the same amount of money as you would for the Nitro 5 but are looking at different options, the Dell Inspiron 15 7000 Gaming makes an outstanding alternative. For one, its Max-Q GTX 1060 allows it to punch above its weight class in gaming benchmarks. Couple that with better thermal performance, and you’ll have a hard time leaving it for the Nitro 5.

Bottom Line

The Acer Nitro 5 is an attractive laptop taking design and build queues from the venerable Acer Predator Helios 300 while mirroring the budget-friendly price point of the Acer Aspire VX 15. In fact, the Nitro 5 offers more gaming and synthetic performance than the Aspire VX 15 while hitting the market at the same price. The major selling points here are the outstanding battery life, thermal dissipation and improved performance in Adobe applications enabled by the i5-8300H.

While we can't help but recommend the Nitro 5 as a well-rounded, entry-level gaming laptop, a previous generation laptop with a Max-Q GTX 1060, such as the Dell Inspiron 15 7000 Gaming, will perform better in pure gaming. On top of that, our Inspiron configuration came equipped with a much faster storage solution. If gaming and storage speeds are your primary concerns, the Acer Nitro 5 may not be what you're looking for. 

All things considered, the Acer Nitro 5 is an solid entry-level gaming laptop and definitely worthy of your consideration if you have a more modest $900 budget.

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    On the first page, Specifications reads:

    Intel Core i7-8300H
  • ajtehblaziken
    looks really nice
  • fullauto2009
    As usual, you can readily find this laptop well below the 850 mark.
  • justin.m.beauvais
    This shares a lot in common with the Helios 300, just from the looks of it. It seems to have the same body, with a slight change on the back of the screen. In fact it appears to have the same panel as well, judging from the figures given.

    It ticks all the necessary boxes for an entry level gaming laptop, looks pretty good, and seems to have fairly reasonable performance.
  • Ninjawithagun
    Not bad - for an entry level gaming laptop. I prefer to pay more and get more, but that's just me ;-)