Laptops

Acer Swift 5 (Late 2019) Review – A BIG Upgrade!

Acer Swift 5 is the new 2019 well early 2020. it’s so ridiculously lightweight it’s a 14-inch laptop that weighs 990 grams less than a kilogram now, of course, being really lightweight isn’t exactly new for the Swift 5 that’s
kind of one of its USPS.

but now with this new twin 19 version, we get 10th generation Intel processors with specs that include the new iOS plus graphics and also options for Nvidia’s MX 250 graphics chip so while it’s still incredibly light.

it’s now a lot more powerful if you’re after a high spec ultra portable than the Swift 5 is well worth a look. it weighs 25% less than the MacBook Air despite having a quad-core CPU a touch screen faster Wi-Fi. The Acer Swift 5 is a truly impressive 14″ laptop – packing in the latest Intel 10th Gen Processors + Iris Plus or MX250 Graphics – while weighing just 990g (world’s 2nd lightest laptop!).

THE DRIVE TO SHED millimeters off ultra-portables continues with Acer’s re-designed Swift 5, which claims to be the “thinnest 14-inch laptop in the world.”

But a slender frame is one thing, quality is another thing. But the new Swift 5 is promising a bit of muscle under its slim frame. We’ve got our hands on the new machine and we’ve got some thoughts.

Design

There’s no question that just 14.95 mm long, the Acer Swift 5 is a sleek laptop, and at 990g it’s pretty light, too; it’s trivially simple to hold it up with just a few digits.


Despite this, it’s well equipped with ports. There’s a pair of USB Type-A ports-one on the left and one on the right as well as an HDMI slot, a USB-C with Thunderbolt 3, a 3.5 mm headphone jack and a Kensington lock.

It looks pretty fetching in a deep, dark blue with a copper-gold logo and a hinge.

Speaking of which, the hinge is not only pleasingly rounded but also acts as a means of supporting the lower section of the laptop at a slight angle, which is supposed to help the typing action.

We’re not so convinced of the benefit of that. And while the keyboard deck itself is solid enough, to our fingers the keys felt a little spongy but also a lack of travel and tactile feedback.

Not a bad keyboard, but from our first impression, it’s not going to compete with the typing experience delivered by Surface Laptop 2 and Dell XPS 13.

Unfortunately, the mission to reduce weight and bulk has left the Swift 5 with a plastic rather than a glass-top trackpad. It’s responsive though, which is exactly what we want on a Windows 10 laptop. The dive-board mechanism below the trackpad delivers a slightly flimsy feel click; if the corners of the Swift 5 have been cut, it’s here.

Apart from that, the Swift 5 is a nicely crafted machine that’s easy on the eye. It doesn’t have the premium feel of something like HP Spectre 13 or MacBook Pro in terms of finishing, but it’s a nice ogle and fondle machine.

Display
With a Full HD IPS panel, the Swift 5 isn’t exactly delivering a 14in display with a super-sharp resolution. But 1080p is still good enough for a screen of this size and text looks plenty clear.

Colors and contrast seem decent enough, although we can’t really test it properly until we have a unit for a proper review.

But even when we woke it up to full, the brightness seemed a little lacking, which could be one of the reasons why the colors aren’t exactly singing to us. This might be due to an ambient light sensor holding the screen back from full brightness, but we don’t know for sure yet.

The bezels are reasonably trim, which we always appreciate, even though there is still room for a webcam in the top bezel. But there’s a lot of wobble and flex in the screen and lid, which doesn’t exactly scream solid construction for the Swift 5. Again, that’s probably the price that one pays for having such a slim and light machine, and it’s a compromise that we could live with.

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Acer Aspire 5 Slim Laptop, 15.6 inches Full HD IPS Display, AMD Ryzen...
  • AMD Ryzen 3 3200U Dual Core Processor (Up to 3.5GHz); 4GB DDR4 Memory; 128GB PCIe NVMe SSD
  • 15.6 inches Full HD (1920 x 1080) Widescreen LED backlit IPS Display; AMD Radeon Vega 3 Mobile Graphics
  • 1 USB 3.1 Gen 1 Port, 2 USB 2.0 Ports & 1 HDMI Port with HDCP support

Performance, storage, and battery life

We really couldn’t test the performance of the Swift 5 in our hands-on, but the model we had our mitts on came with Intel’s new Core i7-1065G7 10-generation processor. It’s the Ice Lake 10-nanometer CPU that comes with Intel’s new Iris Plus built-in graphics that promise a significant increase in pixel power over the older Intel UHD graphics accelerators.

But this Swift 5 also had GeForce MX250’s dedicated graphics card to run alongside the processor. In the hands-on unit, the display was not connected to the GPU, it was running on the Iris Plus, so we have no idea how the GPU performs in this configuration.

We were able to get Geekbench 4 running on the Swift 5, and with the caveat, it’s a display machine, the results were quite promising. In the single-core score, Swift 5 managed a very solid 4,109, while in the multi-core test it raked in 10,372.

That’s roughly on par with the likes of the Surface Laptop 2, though Geekbench 4 showed the CPU running at a maximum of 2.23GHz, despite the chip supposedly being able to hit 3.5GHz across all its cores.

The chip has a configurable thermal design power of 15W to 25W, so given the result here, we have a sneaking suspicion that maximum processor horsepower wasn’t extracted from the CPU in this case. Again, this was a fly-by test so we can’t make any definitive judgments here.

RAM is this model came in at 8GB, but the last Swift 5 came with up to 16GB so that could be the same deal here; Acer hasn’t confirmed this though. Storage comes in the form of a 512GB PCIe SSD, though this is the top configuration, which is decent enough for an ultraportable.

As for battery life, Acer reckons the Swift 5 will deliver up to 12.5 hours of electrical juice. We’d need to see this for ourselves, and didn’t really get an impression of the laptop’s endurance from our hands-on.

First impressions
The Swift 5 is yet again an impressively slim machine that’ll appeal to regular road warriors who want a properly lightweight machine to lug around.

We have some reservations about the keyboard, trackpad and the wobble in the lid, but otherwise, things look positive for Swift 5, especially if the Core i7-1065G7 delivers the performance good Intel promises.

We won’t have to wait too long to find out as the Swift 5 is due for release at some point this month, with prices starting at 899 Euro, around ¬£812, which is a pretty competitive price for such a machine.

There is the caveat that we expect more laptops with Ice Lake chips to make their debut, so the Swift 5 might only have a swift moment in the limelight before competition from other Windows 10 laptop makers pops up

Sale
Acer Aspire 5 Slim Laptop, 15.6 inches Full HD IPS Display, AMD Ryzen...
  • AMD Ryzen 3 3200U Dual Core Processor (Up to 3.5GHz); 4GB DDR4 Memory; 128GB PCIe NVMe SSD
  • 15.6 inches Full HD (1920 x 1080) Widescreen LED backlit IPS Display; AMD Radeon Vega 3 Mobile Graphics
  • 1 USB 3.1 Gen 1 Port, 2 USB 2.0 Ports & 1 HDMI Port with HDCP support