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Pros: The hardware is a great deal if you catch this on sale. I've been putting the Nvidia card through bench marking paces, and I'm happy with the results for a mobile setup. I've always wanted an SSD, but it turns out this is an SSHD. Basically it stores the most used files on the solid state memory automatically. It's still much faster. My old Acer Aspire E1-571-6387 had one advantage which was the CPU, otherwise everything is just as good or better. This was a good upgrade. It's about two pounds lighter as well, and feels like a sturdy build.
Cons: Lots of minor things,
You'll want to buy a USB mouse for when you're not chilling on the couch watching Youtube, the touchpad is like trying to finger paint with a hotdog, except you can only hold it with salad tongs.
The CPU is the bottleneck here, I stepped down from an i5 Quad-Core @ 2.6GHz. You'll notice tiny audio skips if you've got music playing and open a second tab in Chrome. That being said, it hasn't impacted my gaming yet, and the SSD picks up some slack.
Oddly, for the GPU it packs, the screen is poor quality.
The wireless adapter seems a bit weak, at least weaker than its predecessor.
Other Thoughts: Keep in mind I got this on sale for $460.
The top lid has a strange fake wood texture.
Moving from Windows 8 to 8.1 is a bit jarring.
The power button is right next to END and above the - key, I just know I'm going to hit it accidentally some time.
You can put a fan into the CD/DVD bay, and if you're upgrading and won't make use of your old laptop there's an open RAM slot, although 8 is usually enough for most people.
The keyboard is nice, but set back pretty far and the touchpad is large and takes up a lot of space up front.
For those with specific room set-ups and are interested, the power charging port is on the right. Battery life is average.
I took a bar off my tech level two years ago since I don't dig around in the OS like I used to. I know 98, XP and Vista back to front, but I haven't messed with the newer ones. I also haven't built anything in a few years. The reason I bring this up is because it SEEMS like a firmware built-in thing, but whenever the lid is lifted up, it disengages the NUM lock. It seems like an Acer thing, but I would take this bit with a grain of salt.
BOTTOM LINE, I'd recommend it to you on sale price, but for the normal price of $660, I'd save a bit more and find something with a more powerful CPU.
Pros: I got this laptop for $450, which is a great sale price for this hardware. The i5 is working really well so far, and the integrated graphics are working out for Minecraft. Mostly playing games from 2002 and back. The screen is nice and big, and so is the keyboard. The keys are a bit flat, but it just takes some getting used to. I have bigger hands and I have no problem hitting the keys.
Everything is fast, and there is a good, noticeable difference in speed from my old AMD Phenom Quad core. It ran at 2.3GHz. So I was a bit surprised how much smoother this handled.
Love it so far!
Cons: Biggest con has to be Windows 8.
Could have used a bit more RAM. Even two more gigs would have been nice.
Some bloatware, took me about twenty minutes to get rid of it. Acer has some programs on it by default that aren't very useful.
The power and ethernet ports are on the left side, which doesn't really work with the setup in either of the rooms where I use it.
Other Thoughts: It gets a little warm, but I'd say within normal parameters so far,. I'll be sure to update if anything goes wrong.
Swapped out Macafee for Avast.