Acer Aspire M5-481PT Touch Screen Laptop Review

 

Technical Features:

  • Windows 8 – 64 bits (Can be upgraded to Windows 8.1)
  • Intel Core i5-3337U Dual-core 1.80 GHz
  • 14″ HD (1366 x 768) 16:9 Touch Screen monitor
  • 6 GB, DDR3 SDRAM
  • 500 GB HDD + 20 GB SSD
  • Intel HD 4000 Graphics Card with Shared Memory
I have been using this laptop for about a year and a half now. In general I’m happy with it. I’d like to summarize my experience with this laptop under two sections:

Positives:

  • Aluminum casing makes it hold strong and greatly helps dissipate the heat. As compared to my older laptop, my palms no longer feel the heat.
  • The LED lighting  on the keyboard makes typing a great experience day and night. Coupled with the aluminum platform, individual keys on the keyboard hold tight when typing.
  • The HDD is pretty silent.
  • The fan is very silent.
  • 14″ touch screen is just the right size for my needs – for a laptop that’s easy to carry around. That also means the weight is just right.
  • Graphics quality is good but see my notes below.
  • The battery life is great. Specs claim it can go up to 8 hrs, though I haven’t specifically tested, I believe I get around 4 to 5 hours at moderate use (web browsing but not streaming or watching movies)
  • If you know or can learn how to use the Dolby Home Theater settings, you may have a great sound experience while watching movies and or listening to music. The surround sound feeling is fantastic for the size and power capabilities of this device.

Negatives:

  • The keyboard lighting is not configurable. You have to turn it on manually each time using the Fn + F9 combination, when you turn on the laptop.
  • You need to look at the monitor as directly as possible: If you tilt the monitor a bit, you lose the colors. This is probably due to the touch screen.
  • I would wish the resolution be higher at 1600×900 for a more clear picture (but it certainly is better than many other laptops in the market.)
  • I cannot feel the performance addition I expected from the 20 GB SSD Hybrid drive. After waking up the PC from sleep, it keeps doing things in the background for a few minutes and is not responsive at all.
  • After waking from sleep, the wireless card does not re-connect to the WAP some times. Have to disable/enable the wireless network adapter OR reboot the PC completely.
  • I’d like at least one USB port and the power plug to be on the side. Currently they are at the back and it is hard to access.

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