Acer Aspire 5 (2022) review: Squeaking by with just enough

Acer Aspire 5 (2022) review: Squeaking by with just enough

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Acer Aspire 5 2022 beforehand   angled presumption    showing show  and keyboard deck.

Acer Aspire 5 (2022)

MSRP $700.00

“The Acer Aspire 5 (2022) is an progressively uncommon fund laptop with the latest Intel 12th-gen chips.”

Pros

  • Solid productivity performance
  • Excellent larboard selection
  • Impressive expandability
  • Touchpad is comfortable
  • Great value

Cons

  • Below-average artillery life
  • Keyboard feels escaped and imprecise
  • No Windows Hello support

The 2019 Acer Aspire 5 was an fantabulous $400 budget laptop that made its mode to our best laptops list. Then a comic happening happened: The pursuing 2 versions took important steps backward, falling disconnected our lists and failing to garner recommendations. Now, Acer has introduced its 2022 Acer Aspire 5 that updates to Intel’s 12th-gen CPUs portion raising the entry-level terms to $650.

I reviewed the 2nd slightest costly exemplary of the Acer Aspire 5, a $700 (currently connected merchantability for $600) configuration with a Core i5-1235U CPU and a 15.6-inch Full HD (1,290 x 1,080) IPS display. The terms has gone up, oregon rather, there’s nary longer a configuration little than $500, meaning that the laptop doesn’t person utmost worth successful its favor. Fortunately, it improves successful respective cardinal areas and makes for a much compelling fund choice.

Design

Acer Aspire 5 2022 rear presumption    showing lid and logo.Mark Coppock/Digital Trends

The 2022 Aspire 5 saw lone a fewer plan changes from the erstwhile version, including a sleeker keyboard platform and a power to a magnesium-aluminum alloy successful the lid. Otherwise, it’s the aforesaid acheronian grey chassis with elemental lines and angles and zero bling extracurricular of a mates of Acer logos. The integrative show bezels are comparatively large, with an 81% screen-to-body ratio that feels a spot aged school.

Budget laptops thin to beryllium plain successful their designs, though, and the Aspire 5 is nary different. Note that Acer volition beryllium offering models with bluish and golden lids that adhd immoderate panache.

The laptop is constructed of integrative extracurricular of the lid, and its physique prime is acceptable for a fund laptop. There’s immoderate bending successful the lid and immoderate flexing successful the keyboard deck, but it’s not egregious. The Lenovo Flex 5 14 and Acer Swift 3 person somewhat much rigid builds, but the Aspire 5 is emblematic for a laptop that’s good nether $1,000. The hinge inactive props the laptop up astatine a flimsy space to marque typing much comfy and summation airflow, and it’s inactive a small escaped with a lid that wobbles during dense typing.

Thanks to the ample bezels and 16:9 show facet ratio, the Aspire 5 is wider than galore 15-inch laptops. It’s not arsenic heavy arsenic immoderate that athletics 16:10 facet ratios, and it’s reasonably bladed astatine 0.70 inches and airy astatine 3.88 pounds.

Ports and expandability

The Aspire 5 stands retired successful its expandability. The insides are user-accessible, and the RAM tin beryllium upgraded portion there’s a 2nd retention slot for different SSD. Most modern laptops aren’t truthful easy upgradable, making the Aspire 5 much future-proof than most.

Connectivity is different strength. This year’s exemplary includes a USB-C larboard with Thunderbolt 4 support, thing you don’t ever spot successful fund laptops. There are besides 3 USB-A 3.2 Gen 2 ports, a full-size HDMI 2.1 port, an Ethernet port, and a 3.5mm audio jack. Unfortunately, there’s nary SD paper reader. Wireless connectivity includes Wi-Fi 6E and Bluetooth 5.2.

Performance

Acer Aspire 5 2022 beforehand   presumption    showing show  and keyboard deck.Mark Coppock/Digital Trends

My archetypal reflection is that the 2022 Aspire 5 is importantly faster than past year’s model. That’s nary astonishment fixed the low-power Core i3 successful the erstwhile model, and there’s surely $200 worthy of show improvement. Where the 2021 Acer Aspire 5 was excessively dilatory adjacent for $480 oregon so, the 2022 mentation is accelerated capable to vie with laptops that outgo considerably more.

Either way, these are laptops meant for elemental tasks and productivity successful enactment — not much aggravated workloads similar AAA games oregon 4K video editing.

To that end, my reappraisal portion was equipped with the Intel Core i5-1235U, a 15-watt 10-core (two Performance and 8 Efficient), 12-thread CPU that slots successful the mediate of Intel’s 12th-gen lineup for thin-and-light laptops. Above it is the 28-watt 12-core (four Performance and 8 Efficient), 16-thread P-series, and beneath it is the nine-watt U-series with the aforesaid halfway and thread count. This is the archetypal Core i5-1235U we’ve tested, but we person the Core i7-1255U with a max Turbo frequence of 4.7GHz that we tin comparison to the Core i5 with a max of 4.4GHz.

Because this is simply a caller CPU, I created a examination radical of different modern processors alternatively than focusing connected akin fund laptops. We besides haven’t reviewed galore 15-inch fund laptops successful a while, truthful we don’t person galore caller models to comparison to successful the aforesaid terms scope arsenic the Aspire 5. I utilized Acer’s thermal show tuning inferior and recovered small quality betwixt the laptop’s balanced and show modes, but I reported some results successful the array below.

For the money, the all-around show was much than acceptable.

As a lawsuit successful point, see the $1,050 Dell Inspiron 14 2-in-1 moving the higher clocked Core i7-1255U. The Aspire 5 was importantly faster successful each our benchmarks but PCMark 10 Complete, wherever it was quicker but not by specified a important margin. That’s apt down to the Aspire 5’s larger chassis and amended thermals — the Dell did show much throttling than the Acer. The Aspire 5 was besides overmuch faster than the 35-watt four-core/eight-thread Core i7-11370H successful the $1,000 Acer Swift 3 16.

On the different hand, the Aspire 5 was notably slower than the Lenovo Yoga 9i 14 Gen 7 with the Core i7-1260P, but that’s nary surprise. It besides fell down the Asus ZenBook S 13 OLED with the eight-core, 16-thread AMD Ryzen 7 6800U moving astatine 28 watts, particularly successful multi-core tests. Again, that’s to beryllium expected and not a sound against the Acer.

Overall, the Aspire 5 provided accelerated show for demanding productivity workflows, and it fell down successful CPU-intensive originative tasks. For the money, the all-around show was much than acceptable for a laptop of its type.

Geekbench
(single / multi)
Handbrake
(seconds)
Cinebench R23
(single / multi)
PCMark 10
Complete
Acer Aspire 5 2022
(Core i5-1235U)
Bal: 1,565 / 7,352
Perf: 1,564 / 6,908
Bal: 134
Perf: 129
Bal: 1,668 / 7,671
Perf: 1,659 / 7,906
5,175
Acer Aspire 5 2021
(Core i3-1115G4)
Bal: 1,215 / 2,544
Perf: 1,300 / 2,566
Bal: 300
Perf: 297
Bal: 1,274 / 3,128
Perf: N/A
3,752
Dell Inspiron 14 2-in-1
(Core i7-1255U)
Bal: 1,703 / 6,520
Perf: 1,685 / 6,791
Bal: 153
Perf: 141
Bal: 1,729 / 6,847
Perf: 1,773 / 7,009
5,138
Lenovo Yoga 9i 14 Gen 7
(Core i7-1260P)
Bal: 1,717 / 9,231
Perf: 1,712 / 10,241
Bal: 130
Perf: 101
Bal: 1,626 / 7,210
Perf: 1,723 / 8,979
5,760
Acer Swift 3 16
(Core i7-11370H)
Bal: 1,619 / 6,119
Perf: N/A
Bal: 159
Perf: 153
Bal: 1,568 / 5,806
Perf: 1,566 / 6,053
5,491
Asus ZenBook 14X OLED
(Core i7-1165G7)
Bal: 1,536 / 5,780
Perf: 1,527 / 5,776
Bal: 175
Perf: 162
Bal: 1,479 / 5,717
Perf: 1,502 / 6,252
5,366
Asus ZenBook S 13 OLED
(Ryzen 7 6800U)
Bal: 1,417 / 6,854
Perf: 1,404 / 7,223
Bal: 112
Perf: 111
Bal: 1,402 / 8,682
Perf: 1,409 / 8,860
5,647

Gaming show was a antithetic story. The Aspire 5 scored conscionable 1,285 successful the 3DMark Time Spy test, which is good beneath the Intel Iris Xe average. It besides managed conscionable 11 frames per 2nd (fps) in Fortnite and 1,080p and epic graphics.

Don’t number connected the Aspire 5 for thing but precise casual gaming. Although it’s not disposable yet connected Acer’s website, determination volition beryllium a mentation with an Nvidia GeForce RTX 2050 that should supply overmuch amended gaming performance, but adjacent that uses a last-gen fund graphics card.

3DMark
Time Spy
Fortnite
(1080p/1200p Epic)
Acer Aspire 5 2022
(Intel Iris Xe)
Bal: 1,285
Perf: 1,289
Bal: 11 fps
Perf: 11 fps
Acer Aspire 5 2021
(Intel UHD graphics)
Bal: 652
Perf: 655
Bal: 5 fps
Perf: N/A
Dell Inspiron 14 2-in-1
(Intel Iris Xe)
Bal: 1,492
Perf: 1,502
Bal: 12 fps
Perf: 12 fps
Lenovo Yoga 9i 14 Gen 7
(Intel Iris Xe)
Bal: 1,658
Perf: 1,979
Bal: 12 fps
Perf: N/A
Acer Swift 3 16
(Intel Iris Xe)
Bal: 1,911
Perf: N/A
Bal: 24 fps
Perf: N/A
Asus ZenBook 14X OLED
(GeForce MX450)
Bal: 1,756
Perf: 1,765
Bal: 18
Perf: N/A
Asus ZenBook S 13 OLED
(Radeon graphics)
Bal: 2,110
Perf: 2,213
Bal: 19 fps
Perf: 19 fps

Display and audio

Acer Aspire 5 2022 beforehand   presumption    showing display.Mark Coppock/Digital Trends

The biggest crushed the past year’s Aspire 5 received a debased people was its display, which was the worst we’ve seen successful a laptop successful years. It was atrocious, with constrictive and inaccurate colors, debased brightness, and a horribly debased opposition ratio. Whether the Aspire 5 2022 mentation would marque its mode backmost onto our recommended database had a batch to bash with the prime of its display.

To statesman with, Acer retained the old-school 16:9 facet ratio erstwhile astir modern laptops person migrated to taller, much productivity-friendly 16:10 oregon 3:2 panels. That’s forgivable successful a fund laptop, however. More important would beryllium the colors, contrast, and brightness, and retired of the box, I was instantly struck by a show that astatine slightest looked decent. The colors weren’t each that dynamic, but they weren’t oversaturated, either. While blacks had a flimsy hint of gray, the opposition didn’t look atrocious for a laptop good nether $1,000. I was hopeful.

According to my colorimeter, Acer dropped the show from the past mentation and sourced a overmuch amended panel. Brightness was somewhat little than our 300-nit baseline astatine 282 nits, but that’s agleam capable for astir indoor settings. Colors weren’t precise wide astatine conscionable 65% of sRGB and 48% of AdobeRGB, but accuracy wasn’t unspeakable astatine a DeltaE of 2.79 (anything little than 2.0 tin beryllium utilized much reliably for ocular originative work). These aren’t great, caput you, but they are acceptable scores for a fund laptop. The opposition was higher than the erstwhile exemplary astatine 740:1, beneath our preferred 1,000:1 but again, not unspeakable for a fund machine.

The Aspire 5’s show is good for productivity enactment but doesn’t connection the colors needed for originative tasks. It’s adjacent to the displays successful the much costly Dell Inspiron 14 2-in-1 and the $1,400 Samsung Galaxy Book Odyssey but beneath the different IPS displays successful our examination group. But for a fund laptop, the show is much than adequate.

Brightness
(nits)
Contrast sRGB gamut AdobeRGB gamut Accuracy DeltaE
(lower is better)
Acer Aspire 5 2022
(IPS)
282 740:1 65% 48% 2.79
Acer Aspire 5 2021
(IPS)
211 60:1 53% 40% 10.7
Acer Swift 3 16
(IPS)
334 1,530:1 100% 77% 1.11
Samsung Galaxy Book Odyssey
(IPS)
350 800:1 65% 48% 2.37
Dell Inspiron 14 2-in-1
(IPS)
288 1,330:1 63% 48% 3.35
Lenovo IdeaPad Slim 7 16 Pro
(IPS)
420 1,310:1 100% 80% 1.59

Two downward-firing speakers connected the beforehand bottommost of the chassis supply audio that doesn’t get precise large and, adjacent so, has immoderate distortion erstwhile turned each the mode up. Highs are lacking, with astir accent connected the mids, and there’s zero bass. You’ll privation to propulsion retired a brace of headphones for thing different than elemental strategy sounds.

Keyboard, touchpad, and webcam

Acer Aspire 5 2022 apical  down   presumption    showing keyboard and touchpad.Mark Coppock/Digital Trends

The Aspire 5’s keyboard has nicely sized keycaps and plentifulness of cardinal spacing, adjacent fixed the numeric keypad. Unfortunately, its switches are loose, with an abrupt bottoming enactment that’s uncomfortable implicit agelong typing sessions. It’s good down the champion laptop keyboards retired there.

The touchpad is overmuch better, being ample capable for comfy usage and offering a creaseless aboveground for Windows 11 multitouch gestures, which are well-supported acknowledgment to Microsoft Precision touchpad drivers. The buttons person a soft, quiescent click that’s assured and pleasant to use.

Windows 11 Hello passwordless login is provided by an optional fingerprint scholar embedded successful the upper-left country of the touchpad. However, my reappraisal portion wasn’t equipped with that feature, truthful I could not trial it. Not having immoderate signifier of passwordless information is simply a shame, adjacent connected a laptop of this price.

The webcam is 720p and offers Acer’s sound simplification technology. It provided decent representation prime adjacent successful debased light, but it can’t support up with the progressively communal 1080p webcams we’re seeing successful premium laptops.

Battery life

Acer Aspire 5 2022 rear angled view.Mark Coppock/Digital Trends

The Aspire 5’s artillery is lone 50 watt-hours, which isn’t a batch for a 15-inch laptop. The show is conscionable Full HD, though, and the Core i5-1235U is intended to beryllium a much businesslike CPU, truthful I expected tenable artillery life.

What I saw was somewhat little than that. In our web browsing trial that cycles done fashionable and analyzable websites, the Aspire 5 lasted astir 6.5 hours. That’s little than mean and the lowest among our examination group. It managed 10.75 hours successful our video trial that loops a section Full HD Avengers trailer, which is besides little than average. And to implicit the theme, the Aspire 5 managed 8.25 hours successful the PCMark 10 Applications trial that’s the champion denotation of productivity artillery life. That’s competitory without our examination radical but again beneath mean overall.

The Aspire 5 is improbable to marque it done a afloat day’s enactment unless your workflow is exceptionally light. You’ll privation to transportation the proprietary charger on with you, which fortunately is reasonably small.

Web browsing Video PCMark 10
Applications
Acer Aspire 5 2022
(Core i5-1235U)
6 hours, 25 minutes 10 hours, 41 minutes 8 hours, 18 minutes
Acer Aspire 5 2021
(Core i3-1115G4)
6 hours, 55 minutes 9 hours, 29 minutes 7 hours, 53 minutes
Dell Inspiron 14 2-in-1
(Core i7-1255U)
6 hours, 42 minutes 10 hours, 6 minutes 8 hours, 43 minutes
Acer Swift 3 16
(Core i7-11370H)
8 hours, 42 minutes 12 hours, 56 minutes 9 hours, 32 minutes
Lenovo Yoga 9i 14 Gen 7
(Core i7-1260P)
9 hours, 10 minutes 12 hours, 45 minutes 8 hours, 32 minutes
 Asus Zenbook S 13 OLED
(Ryzen 7 6800U)
8 hours, 4 minutes 13 hours, 13 minutes N/A

Price and configurations

The existent Acer Aspire 5 lineup carries the exemplary fig A515-57, and wrong that range, the entry-level configuration is $660 for a Core i5-1235U, 8GB of LPDDR4 RAM, a 512GB SSD, and a 15.6-inch Full HD IPS display.

My reappraisal portion retails for $700 ($600 connected sale) with 16GB of RAM, and you tin walk arsenic overmuch arsenic $850 for a Core i7-1255U, 16GB of RAM, and a 1TB SSD. There are different options wrong the lineup, including interaction show configurations.

Our take

The 2022 Acer Aspire 5 fixes 2 of the erstwhile generation’s astir glaring weaknesses. It equips a overmuch amended display, and its show is importantly better. It’s besides much expensive, without the aforesaid low-cost option.

While its artillery beingness is beneath mean and its physique prime isn’t the best, it’s a overmuch amended worth adjacent astatine its $700 retail price. Get it connected merchantability for $600, and I tin urge it arsenic a well-performing laptop with a show that meets a productivity user’s needs.

Is determination a amended alternative?

I haven’t seen galore fund laptops that person made the leap to Intel’s 12th-gen CPUs. One illustration is HP’s Laptop 15, which is much costly astatine $920 erstwhile configured arsenic the Aspire 5.

If you’re looking to walk adjacent little than $700 (or $600), I’d see a Chromebook option, of which determination are rather a fewer selections.

Beyond that, you mightiness privation to hold a portion to spot what’s disposable arsenic different laptops successful the aforesaid terms scope upgrade to Intel’s 12th-gen. Otherwise, you’ll extremity up paying for yesterday’s technology.

How agelong volition it last?

The Aspire 5 isn’t the astir robust laptop you’ll get your hands on, but it’s coagulated capable to past for respective years if treated kindly. The components are up to date, meaning it should proceed to tally Windows without immoderate problems. The one-year warranty isn’t exciting, but it’s good for a fund machine.

Should you bargain it?

Yes, particularly if you tin get it connected merchantability for $600. It provides accelerated capable show and a bully capable show to warrant the price.

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