Joined on 04/09/09
Pretty Unbeatable for $170
Pros: It's $170. With Crouton you can run Ubuntu and full Linux which makes it a great dev machine. The 4GB of RAM instead of 2 is a plus, the screen is nice and big (13.3" is big for a Chromebook). Fairly nice looking computer, also has 2 USB 3's, SD slot and HDMI. Keyboard is pretty good. The battery lasts for a full 12 hours for me even when running Ubuntu and taxing the CPU, it's incredible. By far the best point.
Cons: Lots of small things to pick at but since it's only $170 I'm still giving it five stars. First off, know that Chrome OS is pretty useless for all but the most basic users. Definitely plan on installing Crouton and running Ubuntu if you're any kind of tech person. Once you do that though, you're gonna need an SD card as you'll quickly run out of the 16GB of space. The CPU is also painfully slow but that's to be expected. There's no delete key on the keyboard so that takes getting used to. Also the computer as a whole seems to be made out of some very soft plastic that not only is a fingerprint/oil magnet and quickly starts looking gross, the outside cover is extremely easily scratched. I left it in a backpack with the charger and it came out completely scratched and horrible looking. Don't plan on setting anything on top of it, even anything plastic because it'll leave deep scratches.
Overall Review: I would recommend this for people who know what they want and know what they're getting into. If you're looking for just a basic machine to browse the internet and use gmail, it's fantastic. Chrome OS is super fast and responsive even with this computer. 12 hours of battery life. If you're more into tech and willing to go through the process of installing Ubuntu alongside Chrome using Crouton, it's also a great machine. If you're looking for something for rendering and games, this is not it (although it can play minecraft). It's not fast, but it can do everything a regular Linux machine can (yay x86 and 4GB RAM) while also getting 12 hours of battery life and only costing $170. Makes a great development machine. I'm a college student who bought this to carry around all day between classes/work to send emails, do dev when I'm out, view lecture slides etc. and the battery life is the best part. Good supplement to my 17" i7 Lenovo that only gets 1.5-2 hours of battery life. For $200 I got this and a 128GB Flash Drive which is a pretty good deal.
Doesn't work, RMA'd, same issue
Pros: I got it for $5 on black Friday
Cons: I plug in a drive, start copying over large files at 90 MB/s, and within 10 seconds it just freezes. 0 bytes/sec transfer rate, stuck forever. Have to power off the unit. Reads work fine, just large writes do not. I then RMA'd the unit and the one they sent me has the exact same issue. It's probably a bug in the chipset. I had a stroke of inspiration and tried plugging it into a USB 2.0 port, and after about 30 seconds of testing it seems to be able to write to drives without issue. So I guess maybe it's usable as a USB 2.0 dock, which for $5 I'm not gonna go through another RMA for.
Overall Review: I almost threw away two of my hard drives due to freezing before I realized the dock was the problem. (They work fine in my other dock from a different brand).
Low Quality, Acer Warranty Service is Absolute Garbage
Pros: It's big, bright, crisp, and beautiful, and I got it for $280.
Cons: TL;DR it drops the DP link and goes black for several seconds intermittently while gaming. Acer's warranty makes you pay to ship the monitor in ($40 for me), and they send the same one back. They failed to fix it twice, and the second time it came back with shipping damage. I've been trying to get this figured out since *November* and it is now April. More detail: The monitor worked fine for me for about 7 months. I upgraded from a 780Ti to a used RX 580 and not long after I noticed the monitor would drop the display port link and go black for several seconds intermittently while gaming. Not a huge deal usually, but in games like Project Cars 2 or Battlefield it can instantly ruin your whole game. I assumed it was the video card, so I sent it back and bought another. Same issue. Sent it back, this time bought a brand new RX 580. Same issue. Tried various clock/voltage changes on all 3 cards and all always had the issue. Tried 2 other display port cables and 1 other Acer power supply, same issue. I tried this monitor at 1080p and with FreeSync off, same issue. I tried another 1080p monitor that I have, and never saw the issue. At this point the only possible culprit would be the monitor so I contacted Acer. Acer's warranty service involves them actually repairing the item (you get the same one back), and they make you pay to ship it in. I've never before used a warranty service that sent you back the same item, or that made you pay to ship it in. I paid $40 to ship it and they sent it back saying that it passed their burn-in tests and whatever and that they did nothing. Monitor still has the same issue. I sent it in in the original box that does a good job protecting the monitor and to my dismay it came back in a plain brown box (they warn you in advance of this) - but their idea of protecting the monitor is to lay it FACE DOWN on some round pieces of styrofoam, putting pressure across the screen. Amazingly, it wasn't damaged. I sent it in yet again in the same box (the second time they were nice enough to cover shipping) and they once again claimed they couldn't find anything wrong with it and sent it back. This time, the monitor came back with nice round bruise and two green dead pixels in the lower right corner, and moderate backlight bleed/bruising all along the right side about 1/2 inch in. Now, I have a slightly damaged monitor that's still useless for some games and I have $40 and at least 10 hours of troubleshooting lost to show for it. I don't know what I'm supposed to do now. The way they package the monitor for return shipping is terrible and I'm not surprised it came back damaged. I know it happened on the way back because they didn't make note of it in the repair document, only "light scratches" were mentioned. It's crazy you have to pay to send it in, it's crazy that they won't just send you back a different monitor, and I'm annoyed that it even has this problem to begin with. You can't play Project Cars 2 when the screen goes black for 3 seconds and it comes back with your car in the wall.
Overall Review: Given the troubleshooting steps I went through I'm 100% sure that the monitor is at fault. It's astronomically unlikely that I got 3 bad video cards in a row, especially when one is brand new. My only explanations are that either their testing is not good enough (the problem only starts to happen after 30 minutes or so of gaming) or the monitor has some bizarre DisplayPort incompatibility with the RX 580 that they're not seeing because they don't have that specific card. Note that this monitor does NOT have official DisplayPort certification or branding, and so I wouldn't be surprised if their implementation fails to live up to spec. At this point I would love for them to just send me a different monitor (or a partial refund) but apparently that is out of the question. I like most of Acer's products (I'm typing this on an Aspire E 15 right now that I like very much) but my experience with this monitor has been terrible. I'm not surprised this monitor has a 2 star rating. It seems highly likely to me that someone knew they had a bad batch of monitors and sold them at a discount.
Pros: It really is pretty fast compared to a hard drive.
Cons: Had 4 of these over 3 years. First one lasted about 15 months, each one after that lasted no more than 4 months or so. They all died in the same way: just couldn't read sectors anymore. System would gradually lock up more and more as data was lost and then eventually fail to boot. Luckily I consistently made backups, because I didn't trust this thing. Each RMA was also quite slow, total turnaround time from death to new drive was usually about 3 weeks. Email responses were typically 2 to 3 days. After my last RMA (the 4th one) they replaced this with a Vertex 2. Sadly, the vertex 2 is slower if anything (4000 IOPS based on my benchmarks, yet it's rated for 50k) and it holds 5GB less. Of course, after roughly 7 months of ownership, my Vertex 2 is now showing read errors across the board. I don't know how the newer Vertex drives fare, but if you plan on putting any serious use into this thing, don't buy it.
Overall Review: Ridiculously expensive when I got it in June 2009: $240 for 60GB?? Even modern SSDs at $100 for 128GB are rarely worth it for the average user. The fact that the $240 could have gotten me about 2TB more storage (in 2009) is simply aggravating. On another topic, the RMAs took so long that I had to boot my computer to a Ubuntu Live CD just so I could continue to run my server VMs.