Acer Nitro 5 AN515-58-527S gaming laptop review


Acer has made its finest budget-friendly gaming laptop computer even higher.

About the Acer Nitro 5

Here are the specs of the gaming laptop computer we examined:

  • Processor: Intel Core i5-12500H
  • Graphics: Nvidia RTX 3060
  • RAM: 16GB DDR4 SDRAM
  • Storage: 512GB
  • Display: 1920 x 1080p @ 144Hz show
  • Ports: 1 x HDMI; 1 x USB-C; 4 x USB-A; 1 x Ethernet; 1 x Headphone jack
  • Wireless connectivity: Wi-Fi 6, Bluetooth 5.2
  • Webcam: 720p
  • Battery: 230 W battery charger
  • Weight: 5.51 kilos
  • Size: 14.2 x 10.7 x 1.1 inches
  • Warranty: 1-year restricted guarantee

Depending on the configuration, the Nitro 5 can value anyplace between $780 to $2,300. The base configuration has an Eleventh-gen Intel Core i5 processor, an Nvidia GTX 1650 graphics card, 8GB of reminiscence, and 256GB of storage, whereas the highest configuration has a Twelfth gen Intel Core i7 processor, an Nvidia RTX 3070Ti graphics card, a 2560 x 1440p show, 32GB of reminiscence, and 2TB of storage. Our configuration value $1,299 on the time of testing.

What we like

The new look is as cool because the chassis temps

Credit: Reviewed / Jackson Ruckar

The new Nitro 5 ditches the brilliant pink particulars, as a substitute buying and selling it for a pearly black end with delicate teal and maroon strains.

The older Nitro 5’s black-and-red aesthetic was beginning to really feel dated, so I’m thrilled to see this new all-black scheme with delicate coloured highlights change it. It’s simply as cumbersome as earlier than, however that bulk provides the {hardware} sufficient room to breathe and maintain cool even when operating graphically demanding video games.

When I ran Shadow of the Tomb Raider for a few half-hour, the underside of the laptop computer averaged round 35 levels Celsius (95 Fahrenheit), and didn’t really feel uncomfortable on my lap Internally, the {hardware} additionally stays cool. The graphics card didn’t go previous 70 C (158 F), and the processor remained underneath 90 C (194 F) more often than not. Both of these temperature readings imply the elements’ thermals are effectively inside spec.

The followers weren’t loud when taking part in video games, both. Even for strenuous video games like Cyberpunk 2077, the followers weren’t loud sufficient to make dialogue or louder recreation sound results inaudible.

Comfortable keyboard and trackpad

A closeup shot of the Nitro 5's numpad and arrow keys on the right side of the keyboard.

Credit: Reviewed / Jackson Ruckar

Even with out the backlight, the keyboard is straightforward to learn in darkish areas.

If you want your keyboards large and constructed for fast typists, you’ll just like the Nitro 5’s keyboard. Not solely are the keys themselves somewhat larger than your common laptop computer key, however they’re additionally extra spaced aside than ordinary. The keys have loads of depth and depress with the proper quantity of pressure—simple on the fingers, however not so delicate that I’m by chance urgent keys.

On the best, the keyboard has a devoted Numpad and three media keys. The WASD keys have a distinct font than the opposite keys, and the knobs on the F and J keys are outstanding. The pink backlight enhances the white lining of the keys, making it simple to kind at nighttime.

Meanwhile, the trackpad is big, easy, and responsive, making it simple to navigate throughout the display screen. Multi-touch gestures persistently register, and the pretty easy floor supplies little friction. Clicking can also be correct, though it requires some pressure to actuate.

If you’d moderately use an exterior mouse and keyboard, the laptop computer additionally has loads of USB ports to plug in peripherals, in addition to an HDMI port and an Ethernet port.

Perfect gaming efficiency

The right side of the Nitro 5 has a large fan vent and two USB ports.

Credit: Reviewed / Jackson Ruckar

The RTX 3060 graphics card provides it the facility to play many 1080p video games at 120 fps or extra.

Whether you’re an e-sports gamer or an RPG fanatic, the Nitro 5 can sustain. I used to be capable of run Shadow of the Tomb Raider set to its highest 1080p graphics setting at 92 frames per second, which appeared buttery easy on the Nitro 5’s 144Hz show. That’s proper on course for each the {hardware} and the value vary of this laptop computer.

For occasion, the HP Victus 16, is a equally priced laptop computer with an Eleventh-gen Intel Core i7 and the identical RTX 3060 graphics card because the Nitro 5 that pushed 90 fps in the identical recreation. The newer Twelfth gen Intel Core processors are so highly effective due to their hybrid core design, which permits the processor to make use of its cores extra effectively than these operating on last-gen structure. This lets the lower-tier Core processors, just like the Nitro 5’s Twelfth-gen Core i5, run packages as shortly as the upper tier chips of the final era—all whereas retaining the facility consumption decrease than last-gen, too.

For gaming, whether or not you’re operating an Eleventh gen Core i7 or a Twelfth gen Core i5 received’t make a notable distinction (most video games’ efficiency is GPU-bound) however the Twelfth-gen structure is a boon for multithreaded processes like 3D modeling and rendering. The Nitro 5’s processor rendered a automotive mannequin in Blender in three minutes 4 seconds whereas the HP Victus 16’s processor rendered it in 4 minutes 5 seconds, for example.

But if you happen to’re debating between this new Nitro 5 and last-gen’s mannequin we reviewed with an entry-level Nvidia GTX 1650 graphics card, go together with the brand new mannequin. It’s an enormous value distinction ($730 versus $1,299, respectively, on the time of writing) however the efficiency bounce is critical. The GTX 1650 can solely attain 45 fps in Shadow of The Tomb Raider on the similar settings—half of the Nvidia RTX 3060 model’s framerate. Its CPU efficiency additionally will get a lift, with the brand new Nitro 5’s Intel Core i5-12500H trouncing the outdated one’s Ryzen 5 4600H in Cinebench, the place the Intel Core i5 scored 13221 factors, virtually 60% extra factors than the Ryzen 5.

A person types on the Nitro 5 while playing a game.

Credit: Reviewed / Jackson Ruckar

The Nitro 5 is, in some ways, the archetypal gaming laptop computer: a big chassis to maintain elements cool, performance-forward, and a keyboard optimized for gaming.

The RTX 3060 Nitro 5 additionally gives ray tracing—which is lacking on the GTX 1650 mannequin—and if the sport isn’t graphically taxing it’s best to have the ability to internet not less than 60 fps at 1080p with the graphics set to an in depth preset, like High or Ultra. (Minecraft is a good instance.) However, a recreation like Cyberpunk 2077 could be an excessive amount of for the RTX 3060. When we examined the sport on 1080p Ultra with out ray tracing on the Nitro 5, we scratched 62 fps and enabling ray tracing knocked the framerate all the way down to 46 fps. You’ll must decrease the graphics preset or allow Nvidia DLSS to get something larger.

But it’s not all unhealthy information. In truth, the Nitro 5 is best at ray tracing than some pricier gaming laptops with an AMD graphics card. The Asus ROG Strix G15 AMD Advantage, which has a comparable Radeon RX 6800M graphics card, scored 80 fps on regular 1080p Ultra, however simply 21 fps on 1080 Ultra with ray tracing.

For much less strenuous video games, the Nitro 5 can actually reap the benefits of its show’s 144Hz refresh fee. On the very best 1080p graphics settings potential for every recreation, Total War: Warhammer II ran at 100 fps, Final Fantasy XIV ran at 85 fps (in a crowded plaza), and Overwatch ran at 125 fps.

When it involves central processing energy, the Nitro 5’s Intel Core i5-12500H competes with higher-end processors from AMD and former Intel generations. In artificial benchmarks, the Nitro 5 scored 13221 factors in Cinebench and 8767 factors in Geekbench 5’s multi-core benchmark, which is larger than the HP Victus’s Intel Core i7-11800H (10306 and 9400, respectively), and the Asus ROG Strix G15’s AMD Ryzen 9-5900HX (13332 and 7715, respectively.)

Both the Victus’s and ROG Strix G15’s processors are among the finest cellular CPUs accessible, which makes it extra unbelievable that Intel’s newest mid-range processor can compete.

What we don’t like

Awful battery life

Rear shot of the Nitro 5, showing off the power connection port, an HDMI port, and a USB-C port.

Credit: Reviewed / Jackson Ruckar

With lower than 4 hours of battery life, you’ll be able to hardly take this on the go.

A gaming laptop computer remains to be a laptop computer, and it ought to have the ability to deal with widespread productiveness duties with out draining the battery shortly. To take a look at battery life, we let laptops cycle by net pages with the display screen set to 200 nits of brightness, which is an effective approximation of somebody who’s utilizing a laptop computer to edit docs in Google Drive and watch a few episodes of a present on Netflix whereas they’re away from dwelling.

Sadly, this Acer Nitro 5 couldn’t make it to 4 hours—it lasted three hours and 40 minutes earlier than going kaput. Such a brief life makes it arduous to tote the Nitro 5 round a classroom or workplace with out planting your chair subsequent to an influence outlet. It’s not the worst we’ve seen amongst gaming laptops by any means (fairly a number of nonetheless wrestle to go the three-hour mark), but it surely’s disappointing to see no progress since final gen’s Nitro 5, particularly when there are numerous different gaming laptops in the marketplace which have six or extra hours of battery life.

The outdated Nitro 5 with an Nvidia GTX 1650 graphics card managed round six hours. The Asus ROG Zephyrus G14 hit eight hours 44 minutes in our testing. The HP Victus 16 lasted for seven hours 35 minutes, and the Lenovo Legion 5 Pro lasted for six hours. (MSI’s Delta 15 gaming laptop computer lasted a whopping 9 hours and 40 minutes!) It’s unlucky to see this new Nitro 5 marred by such brief battery life.

Washed out show, mediocre audio

The Nitro 5 sits on a table, its display angled away from the camera.

Credit: Reviewed / Jackson Ruckar

While it is good to have 144Hz refresh fee, it is offset by the laptop computer’s mediocre colour gamut.

If you wish to play video games with a wide ranging visible expertise, the Nitro 5 isn’t for you. While the show’s 144Hz refresh fee creates buttery easy movement in video games, the washed-out colours received’t make the motion pop.

When I measured the show’s colour output and brightness with a colorimeter, the Nitro 5 may solely reproduce about 60% of the usual RGB colour gamut. That means any recreation you play on the laptop computer goes to look uninteresting, and in an age the place loads of gaming laptops have phenomenal screens that not less than cowl your entire sRGB gamut, that’s disappointing.

The Nitro 5’s display screen isn’t notably vivid, both. At 282 nits of max brightness, the show is vivid sufficient for a well-lit indoor house, however it might look darkish in daylight. On the opposite hand, it does have good black ranges, so if you happen to follow the good indoors, the Nitro 5’s excessive show distinction provides loads of depth to visible content material.

Moving on to the audio—whereas the sound isn’t crackly or distorted, it’s quiet even at max quantity, and its decrease mids are recessed to the purpose that the audio can sound hole. It’ll do for the fast YouTube video, however if you wish to play a recreation with loads of audio cues, it would be best to join a gaming headset or laptop audio system for a greater sound stage and extra depth.

Enough with the bloatware!

A closeup of the WASD keys.

Credit: Reviewed / Jackson Ruckar

The WASD keys have a robust define to make them simpler to seek out. However, you will not be utilizing WASD if you happen to’re too busy clicking out of bloatware pop-ups.

Out of the field, the Nitro 5 comes loaded with a bunch of pointless software program. Some of it might be the software program you’d find yourself downloading anyway, like Dropbox, however loads of it’s bloatware that at finest are marginally helpful instruments and at worst tank processor efficiency.

NitroSense is probably the most helpful, because it gives a platform to watch fan RPM and processor temps, change keyboard lighting, change audio EQ presets, and mess with efficiency modes. However, Norton Security antivirus software program slowed down our PC’s efficiency till we eliminated it, and Acer Care Center regularly spammed the notifications middle. All of those packages are fortunately simple to take away within the Windows Add/Remove Programs menu.

Should you purchase it?

Yes, the Acer Nitro 5 has extra perks than quirks

A person uses the trackpad to navigate the Nitro 5.

Credit: Reviewed / Jackson Ruckar

If gaming’s most of what you do on a PC, the Nitro 5 is a good match for you.

The Nitro 5 is a laptop computer constructed at the start for players. Its high-refresh show, highly effective graphics card, and hefty chassis give it the efficiency essential to run video games like Shadow of the Tomb Raider at excessive framerates with out a hitch. While the loaded configuration we examined is somewhat expensive at $1,299, it is effectively well worth the value.

However, if you happen to’re in search of a laptop computer that’s good for greater than gaming, you might really feel trapped by the Nitro 5’s cumbersome design and brief battery life, which severely restrict its portability. You can snag the Asus ROG Strix G15 AMD Advantage Edition for a similar value because the Nitro 5 or much less on sale, and it outperforms the Nitro 5 for non-ray tracing gaming. It additionally sports activities a notably thinner chassis and has 9 hours of battery life, however you’d nonetheless be getting a mediocre show.

If you need a gaming laptop computer with an amazing show that received’t break the financial institution, the HP Victus 16, a laptop computer with a stupendous steel chassis and a vivid show, gives an analogous configuration for nearly the identical value because the Nitro 5. If you’re prepared to spend a few hundred {dollars} extra, the Asus ROG Zephyrus G14 crushes the Nitro 5 in efficiency, consists of an HDR-ready show, and has eight hours of battery life. Ultimately, if you end up selecting between the Nitro 5, Asus ROG Strix G15, and the HP Victus 16, the best choice among the many three would be the one which’s on sale on the time.

While the $1,299 Nitro 5 doesn’t stand out among the many crowd just like the cheaper, last-gen Nitro 5, it nonetheless gives a great package deal for the value. Unless you want a laptop computer to hold round on a regular basis, you’ll discover so much to love on this dependable gaming laptop computer.

The product consultants at Reviewed have all of your buying wants lined. Follow Reviewed on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, TikTok, or Flipboard for the most recent offers, product opinions, and extra.

Prices have been correct on the time this text was printed however could change over time.

Meet the tester

Adrien Ramirez

Adrien Ramirez

Staff Writer


@itsaramkat

Adrien is a employees author for Reviewed, primarily centered on reviewing laptops and different shopper tech. During his free time, he is normally wandering round Hyrule.

See all of Adrien Ramirez’s opinions

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