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Acer Aspire 1825PTZ review

Verdict

An ultraportable tablet PC with great battery life, but it falls short of perfection

Review Date: 2 Jun 2010

Reviewed By: Sasha Muller

Price when reviewed: £511 (£600 inc VAT)

Overall Rating
4 stars out of 6

Features & Design
4 stars out of 6

Value for Money
4 stars out of 6

Performance
3 stars out of 6

The tablet PC concept never proved the runaway hit that Microsoft might have hoped for, but that hasn’t stopped plucky manufacturers trying their best to help touch-powered portables hit the big time. Acer’s latest proves a little more appealing than most, fusing the allure of an 11.6in ultraportable with a balletic touch-screen display.

After the decidedly chunky likes of the Fujitsu Lifebook T900 , it’s refreshing to find a tablet PC that attempts to major on portability. You could almost get away with describing the Aspire 1825PTZ as cute: it weighs 1.7kg and, despite that touchscreen, measures barely any thicker around the waist than the average 11.6in laptop.

Acer Aspire 1825PTZ

It’s not just size that sets the Acer apart from the tablet PC pack, however. Where many manufacturers use resistive touchscreen technology, Acer has employed a capacitive panel. The benefits of this are, quite literally, clear to see, and where the displays on many tablet PCs are dogged with grainy, mediocre image quality, the Acer’s panel is clear and bright.

Another plus point is that the panel is multitouch capable, allowing two-fingered gestures to make the most of Windows 7’s touch-friendly interface. The combination of a 1,366 x 768 resolution and 11.6in panel makes it a little fiddly to operate at first, particularly for larger fingers, but switching Windows 7’s default text size to 125% makes a huge difference. Text, icons and menus grow to perfect finger-prodding proportions, and the wonderfully responsive touchscreen makes navigating Windows a genuinely pleasurable experience.

Twirl the screen into tablet mode and Internet Explorer 8 puts the web at your fingertips. Tap a text box and a shortcut to the onscreen keyboard instantly pops up, pinching gestures allow you to zoom in and out, and flicking a finger left or right skips back and forth through web pages.

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User comments

Andrew

Why is the first photo of the wrong laptop the article is about an acer and the photo is of an asus?

By salads on 2 Jun 2010

I particularly like the shot of the open laptop where they decided to use the Asus name instead of Acer. Unusual approach to designing laptops ;)

By TimoGunt on 2 Jun 2010

Photo

Apologies, correct photo now up! Too many Acers and Asuses for my tiny brain to handle...

By DavidBayon on 2 Jun 2010

HP TM2 Review?

Any chance of a review of the HP TM2 tablet pc which would seem to be a reasonable alternative to this (albeit a little more pricey). It's just got the new iCore ULVs (in the US at least!).

By Grunthos on 2 Jun 2010

No Stylus?!

It's bizarre to go to the effort of creating a tablet PC and not include a stylus. Windows hand writing recognition is astonishingly good and the ability to sketch and paint is of big appeal to me.

By Grunthos on 2 Jun 2010

TM2, Stylii etc

I'll request one of those new TM2s from HP. I've found a few links to sites mentioning it using the same processor as the Acer...

As for stylii, it is an oversight, but at least they only cost a couple of quid.

http://www.google.co.uk/products?hl=en&client=fire
fox-a&hs=sdU&rls=org.mozilla:en-GB:official&resnum
=0&q=capacitive+stylus&um=1&ie=UTF-8&ei=smYGTOu_NJ
Sd4Qax2Oi5DA&sa=X&oi=product_result_group&ct=title
&resnum=1&ved=0CCsQrQQwAA

By SashaMuller on 2 Jun 2010

Thanks Sasha

Yeah, the current TM2 uses the same processor as this Acer (typically the US get more of a choice). But the new model tm2-2050 (might be a different model number here) has the new iCore ULVs.

It's not as thin as the as Acer, but has a metal case, fingerprint reader and most importantly, for me anyway, a proper Wacom stylus.

By Grunthos on 2 Jun 2010

can they use a stylus on a capacitive screen?

By TimoGunt on 2 Jun 2010

You can have capacitive styli but whether the aftermarket ones are pressure sensative like the HP TM2 one is I don't know (TM2 has capacitive multi-touch screen and wacom stylus which can automatically detect your fingers if you poke the screen, but ignore your hand it you are resting on it while using the stylus).

By Grunthos on 2 Jun 2010

oh right, sorry I should have looked at the link from SashaMuller. I've learnt something today. Am I right in thinking that they are not as accurate as those used on resistive screens?

By TimoGunt on 2 Jun 2010

Not sure Timo, I hope they are as accurate. I'm really looking into buying one of these as it suits my needs perfectly, but I wouldn't want an inaccurate stylus!

By Grunthos on 2 Jun 2010

Got hold of a stylus, and....

...it's disappointing.

Accuracy is excellent, allowing Windows' handwriting recognition to do its job very well indeed.

There is, however, a glaring issue. The panel isn't able to ignore your hand resting on the screen, so you have to make sure only the stylus is touching the screen and nothing else.

That, as you can imagine, isn't especially comfortable or natural, and particularly not for long periods.

Shame. I'll be amending the stylus comment in the review shortly.

By SashaMuller on 2 Jun 2010

Hand resting

That's not very useful at all really.

Sasha, as in my previous comment, according to one review I've read the HP TM2 detects when the stylus is near the screen and so knows to ignore your hand resting on it. Quite clever... if it works.

By Grunthos on 2 Jun 2010

specs

i spent several days looking for a tablet pc. after looking at the new tablet offerings from a number of manufacturers i came to the conclusion that no one wanted (tablet format running windows 7 with proper memory and storage)to sell me what i wanted but rather sell me what they wanted to sell. eventually i found the aspire 1820ptz. i liked it but i did not like the price. so i looked at the aspire 1820pt. i liked the price but i was not impressed with the lack of stylus and no bluetooth. i did not give up though despite the pathetic lack of information available on the net. eventually and purely by accident i found the aspire 1420p. it as a slightly slower processor and only 2gb or ram and 160gb hard drive. but it does have all the connectivity including bluetooth and i also has a stylus housed at the side of the screen. i ordered it online at £360 and at the same time i ordered 4gb of memory and a 500gb hard drive for £106 inc delivery. i finally have what i want and i am very happy with it, but is SHOULD NOT be this difficult to get what we want in this day and age. by the way i did a trek around the usual computer retailers and found only on convertible notebook between them.

By kevthecat on 8 Dec 2010

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