Aspire 5 A515-515G-571Z Review – Is it a Laptop Worth Purchasing?

Aspire 5 A515-515G-571Z Review

During IFA 2017, Intel divulged details about its new CPUs (the 8th Gen Core) which will be available for desktops and laptops. Why we are mentioning something about Intel’s new CPU is a review of Acer laptop is due to the fact that Acer is among the first few companies in India that has started selling laptops which are fitted with these new Intel CPUs. Our aim here will be to look at Acer’s Aspire 5 series, or to be more specific, we will do an Aspire 5 A515-515G-571Z review since apart from the new CPU, it can also boast about its multimedia capabilities due to presence of Nvidia’s MX150 GPU. So, let us explore few more details about this laptop.

Acer Aspire 5 A515-515G-571Z Review

Acer Laptop Ratings Reviews – The Highlights

  • High performance Core i5-8250U Intel CPU
  • Gaming made easy with Nvidia MX150 GPU
  • Sluggish Windows 10 due to less RAM (4GB)
  • Good mid-ranged pricing
  • A bit heavier laptop for its configuration

What we will be looking at in our review?

Our aim here to perform a thorough review of Acer Aspire 5 A515-515G-571Z’s build and design, hardware as well as software specifications, performance and battery life.

Review Criterion #1: Build and Design

The Body: Since it is a middle range budget laptop, it has a plastic body but still quite sturdy in its lower half that houses most of the components.

Slimness and Weight: If you hold this 15.6 inch laptop in your hand then it does look quite slim at about 20.95mm thickness but on the negative side, it is rather heavy for its category at around 2.2 kg. It would be a drawback for many who are looking for something lighter to carry on a daily basis while commuting from one place to another.

The Lid: Due to its striped design, the lid does not retain fingerprints and looks nice as well. However, on the negative side, the lid flexes rather easily and in addition to it, does not provide a lot of protection to the display. Due to this reason, when someone is pressing the lid, it can result in warping. Moreover, warping is quite noticeable on left side whenever the lid is closed or opened. So, this is one drawback you need to keep note of.

Few of the positive things about the lid are that it can tilt almost 180 degrees and hinges have good torsion which makes it easy to use it at varied angles without any worries.

Display Features: The primary reason we took up Aspire 5 A515-515G-571Z review is because of the fact that it is the only variant which comes fitted with a full HD display which means menus, text and everything else appears clear and sharp.

One negative factor about this model is that its viewing angles are relatively weak. In addition to it, vertical angles have a rather narrow sweet spot.

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Ports/Slots/Sockets: If we look at available ports, we find that there are 3 USB ports (one USB 3.0 port and two USB 2.0 ports), there is a SD card slot, slots for HDMI and Ethernet, USB 3.1 Type-C port and a combo socket for microphone as well as headphone.

Ease of Use: Palm rest area consists of metal plate, helping to give it a premium look and feel. But this has resulted in removal of flex that we commonly see present around the keyboard keys in other laptops.

Keyboard and Trackpad: The laptop has a full size keyboard in addition to the number pad with well spaced out keys and has a trackpad that is also well proportioned.

Bottom of Laptop: The laptop is able to maintain good amount of air circulation due to presence of multiple vents and there are two hatches also which help in accessing the RAM and hard drive. Now, that means you can access or remove these components with the need to visit any service center.

Review Criterion #2: Software and Hardware Specifications

As part of Aspire 5 A515-515G-571Z review, let us now look at its specification and software details. Let us go through the specifications first.

Hardware Specifications

Processor/RAM/Hard Drive

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  • Comes fitted with brand new Core i5-8250U CPU which makes use of 8 processing threads, giving this laptop good performance boost. The CPU makes use of architecture known as Kaby Lake Refresh architecture to enhance its performance with higher number of cores (4 instead of the usual 2) so that the CPU can utilize more processing threads.
  • There is also a hard drive of 1TB as well as DDR4 RAM (of 4GB) to enhance performance of your system.
  • It also comes with one empty accessible slot, which means you can add more RAM if required.

Graphics: In terms of graphics, the laptop lets the CPU (it has built-in UHD Graphics 620 GPU) handle the graphics or the available Nvidia GeForce MX150 (that replaced the GeForce 940MX which was an ageing graphics card) take up this responsibility. MX150 also supports DirectX 12 as well as consists of GDDR5 (2GB) memory.

Software

If we look at the software part, it comes with Windows 10 Home Edition as well as Microsoft’s Student and Home Editions (both full versions). Additionally, there is thirty-day subscription available for Norton Security as part of the software package available when you purchase the system.

There is also the standard suite from Acer which comes bundled with software such as:

  • Acer Collection: Serving the main purpose of curating various apps out of Windows store.
  • Care Center: It does the main task of keeping drivers in updated state.
  • Portal: To assist you in setting up a private cloud of your own.
  • Quick Access: So that you can easily toggle blue light filter.

Review Criterion #3: Battery Life and Performance

Performance

The negative part of Aspire 5 A515-515G-571Z review is that performance wise it does not perform as expected despite the fact that it does not lag behind other laptops in terms of hardware specification.

What we found is that it boots slowly and the OS runs quite sluggishly, in addition to it, it also takes significant amount of time for the Windows menus to open. In case, there are any large app running, such as the Chrome browser, then you hardly have 1GB RAM to perform other operations on the system. Thus, it would have been better if the laptop shipped with 8GB of RAM. However, on the positive side, the system does allow you to add more RAM, in case you want to do so.

CPU and Hard Disk Performance: In general terms, its performance has been good in various multi-threaded tests where it has outperformed other high-end CPUs (such as the 7th Gen CPUs from Intel). Similarly, the hard disk has also performed well in physical disk tests (such as the SiSoft Sandra’s test) and raked up a 200MB/s drive score.

Gaming Performance: Our laptop overview would be incomplete if we overlook its gaming performance. For gaming enthusiast, the good news is that the system works well when you are using native resolution for gaming purpose and use medium or low graphics settings. As for instance, when medium setting was used with 1080p and built-in benchmark, it resulted in achievement of 15fps when we tried to play Rise of the Tomb Raider.

Few other things worth mentioning here are that when you are gaming, the keys present in WSAD area start warming up and noise from exhaust fan is clearly audible, however, it is not too distracting.

Additionally, you can have excellent online conferences with your clients because of the 720p webcam that provides clear picture and video quality even when you are indoors. Furthermore, the speakers are capable enough to deliver loud volume music and are located at the bottom on either side.

Some of the other positive aspects of this laptop’s performance worth mentioning are:

  • Optimus Technology: The good thing about this laptop is that it has support for Optimus technology from Nvidia and as such the MX150 is able to automatically power off when you are not using it.
  • Color Intelligence: Acer Aspire 5 A515-515G-571Z also comes with color adjustment system known as color intelligence and turns out to be helpful when you are viewing animated movies on your laptop.

Battery Life

batteryreviewIn our laptop overview we find that as per specifications, the laptop is supposed to have a battery life of about 7 hours and consists of a four-cell battery. However, when tests were performed, it was found that the battery lasted for just around 6 hours, but we can still consider it to be about average time for such type of battery.

Acer Laptop Ratings Reviews – The Final Verdict

It is a very good multimedia laptop in the mid-range budget, equipped with high performance GPU and CPU. You can also upgrade your RAM and store as much as you can in the available 1TB space.

However, display would have been much better if there was a greater viewing angle. Similarly, a sturdier lid can make the laptop feel much safer to use. In addition to it, performance of Windows 10 gets severely affected due to presence of mechanical hard drive and less amount of RAM (just 4GB of it).

Overall, in terms of notebook rating it is a laptop worth investing in since the positive aspects easily outweigh the negative ones. Moreover, you get you use several features in a budget friendly laptop.

Notebook Rating (Benchmark of 5)

  • Design: 3.5
  • Display: 3
  • Performance: 3.5
  • Software: 3
  • Value for Money: 4
  • Overall: 3
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