Acer Aspire 8920G review
A huge 18.4in widescreen, Blu-ray drive and a big hard disk make this a great entertainment laptop.
Review Date: 17 Sep 2008
Reviewed By: Mike Jennings
Price when reviewed: £1,148 (£1,320 inc VAT)
Features & Design
Value for Money
Acer's Aspire 8920G is one of only two machines here capable of displaying pixel-perfect Full HD on its screen - and, at 18.4in, it's 1.4in larger than its rival, namely the Rock Xtreme 770. Acer puts this extra space to good use, with a stunning resolution of 1,920 x 1,080. There's also a Blu-ray drive and a few other features that lend themselves to home entertainment.
To the left of the full-sized keyboard is Acer's media control system, featuring a set of touch-sensitive media manipulation buttons - Play, Pause, Next track, and a large volume control. It's a snazzy-looking bit of gadgetry.
Most of the controls work with Acer's proprietary software alone, though: disappointingly, only the track control options work in Windows Media Player, with the volume slider and other buttons refusing to respond.
The huge screen and portly dimensions suggest solid build quality, and the Acer doesn't disappoint: the screen and large, metallic wristrest hardly flex under pressure. It's a quality panel, too - our only doubt, albeit minor, is that bright colours appear a little flat.
The keyboard and mouse are reasonably comfortable, although we'd have liked to see a little more travel in the keys and buttons. The trackpad is a little small, too - it feels cramped thanks to a large scrollbar at the side.
But there is a decent specification underpinning the flashy exterior. The 2.5GHz Intel Core 2 Duo T9300 is paired with 4GB of RAM for an impressive 2D benchmark result of 1.32, while a GeForce 9650M GS graphics chip saw the Aspire return 19fps in our medium-settings Crysis benchmark. There's acres of storage, too: 640GB, provided by a pair of 320GB hard disks.
The speakers aren't the best we've heard - the bass is weak and the treble indistinct - but they're enough for watching the occasional movie.
But this is the only black mark on a superb machine that offers everything you'd want in a luxury laptop. The screen lets you watch Blu-ray discs in Full HD, the battery lasts for more than three hours (under light use), and there's a fantastic range of multimedia features. The HP Pavilion beats it by offering even more, but this Acer is a worthy alternative.
Author: Mike Jennings
- Second NatWest outage in a week after DDoS attack
- Ex-Microsoft exec Paul Maritz "too old" to do Ballmer's job
- Microsoft patches TIFF flaw in next Patch Tuesday
- HP builds Leap Motion into keyboards
- Spotify expected to offer mobile music for free
- Briton sues Microsoft over NSA data spying
- Microsoft takes down $2.7m click-fraud botnet
- 3D printed guns worth ten years in jail
- Government unveils £10m for "innovative" broadband, but quiet about last fund's fate
- Why teachers shouldn't be nervous about shift to coding
- Tech City: Easy to score when you move the goalposts
- How to remove SkyDrive from the Windows 8.1 Explorer
- Switching from iPhone to Android? Switch off iMessage
- Why is Google pumping more money into Firefox?
- Sky Broadband Shield review
- Samsung Galaxy S4: how to double your battery life
- Motorola Moto G review: first look
- IBM Watson meets Willy Wonka
- Google’s support policies shove users towards Chrome
- Lenovo Yoga Tablet review: first look
- Closer to reality: photorealism in computer graphics
- Windows 8.1: Top 10 advanced features
- Securing the Internet of Things
- Internet of Things: five unlikely hacking risks
- Life behind the wall: censorship in China
- 42 best Android apps
- 3D museums that never close
- 29 best Windows 8.1 apps
- Bring an old PC up to speed
- My PC is infected: what now?
- The importance of load balancing
- Windows Phone App Studio: an easy way to create your first Windows Phone 8 app
- The end of Windows XP support: what it really means for businesses
- Don't rely on Chrome's password vault
- Using Buffer to manage your social media
- Microsoft needs its own Steve Jobs
- Forget credit cards: hackers want your Facebook account
- Can't get fast enough broadband? Here's what to do
- Leap Motion and the battle against UI stagnation
- How to build a really bad network
There are dozens of exciting prizes up for grabs on PC Pro Competitions. All our competitions are free to enter. Try your luck.ENTER NOW