Acer Aspire 5820T-373G32Mn £653
16th Feb 2011 | 09:30
A well-constructed, highly portable consumer laptop but it sadly fails to excite
The Acer Aspire 5820T-373G32Mn is part of Acer's TimelineX consumer laptop range and promises excellent performance with no compromise to battery life.
Although there are more powerful laptops around this price point, the Acer's portability is unrivalled. The bland grey chassis design lacks any significant design flourishes, but the matt finish at least prevents fingerprints from gathering.
Construction is solid and the 2.4kg weight makes this a good laptop for the briefcase and light enough for the daily commute.
Working away from the office is no problem, thanks to its excellent battery life, affording a fantastic 451 minutes of productivity from a single charge. This is almost three hours more than its nearest rival at this price and is the kind of mobility we would expect from a netbook.
Acer has fitted a dual-core Intel Core i3 370M processor, which provides strong budget performance, backed up by 3072MB of memory. You can happily run several office applications at once without slowdown.
However, several laptops around this price point feature a more powerful Intel Core i5 processor for the same price or less.
Battery life: 451 minutes
MobileMark 2007: 218
3DMark 2003: 3188
The Acer also contends with basic integrated graphics, which are suitable only for simple multimedia tasks, such as browsing photos. If you need more graphical power, the Dell XPS 15 and Samsung Q430-JS02UK are better options.
The full-sized keyboard closely resembles the Packard Bell EasyNote TX86, with flat keys and a dedicated numeric keypad. The keys are firmly set and comfortable to type on, although the gaps between them are a haven for crumbs.
The touchpad is smooth and has a clearly labelled scrollbar on the right edge for quickly navigating through documents and web pages, although the mouse buttons have very little travel.
This laptop also features a display with a widescreen aspect ratio, which is ideal for watching movies. The Acer's 15.6-inch display is one of the brightest, with deep blacks and strong contrast, but it lacks vibrancy, with none of the punch of the Dell XPS 15 and Toshiba Satellite L650-1GD.
The Acer's 320GB of storage is bettered here only by the Dell XPS 15, and provides plenty of space for your important files, although it could be quickly filled by a large media collection.
Wireless and wired networking are strong with 802.11n Wi-Fi and Gigabit Ethernet both on board, while VGA and HDMI ports can be used to connect the laptop to external monitors or projectors.
The Aspire 5820T-373G32Mn may lack exciting features and settles for a stoic business design, but the excellent battery life and slim, light chassis make it a worthy travelling companion. Recommended for those who spend a lot of time on the road travelling.
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