Skip to navigation

Acer Aspire TimelineX 4820T review

Verdict

Delivers a comprehensive repertoire of stamina, speed and svelte good looks, but the ergonomics disappoint

Review Date: 10 Jun 2010

Reviewed By: Sasha Muller

Price when reviewed: £719 (£845 inc VAT)

Overall Rating
4 stars out of 6

Features & Design
3 stars out of 6

Value for Money
4 stars out of 6

Performance
6 stars out of 6

It's almost impossible to please everyone all of the time, but Acer's Aspire TimelineX 4820T wants to do just that. By fusing the light-footed panache and class-leading stamina of the previous Aspire Timeline range with the power of Intel's Core i5, Acer has sought to create a portable powerhouse for sensible money.

Take a good long, hard look at the Aspire TimelineX 4820T and you'd be liable to mistake it for a modestly equipped CULV laptop. It's certainly impressively dainty. At just 2.07kg and measuring a mere 25mm thick, the TimelineX is highly portable for a 14in laptop, and it looks good with it. Brushed aluminium sweeps all around, the stylish black lid softening into a silver and glossy black two-tone effect on the inside.

Neither the Acer's weight nor its size is liable to grab any headlines, but beneath its mild-mannered exterior there lies stunning potential. Where its predecessors all made do with Intel's low-voltage processors, and paid the performance price, the Aspire TimelineX 4820T does nothing of the sort.

Acer Aspire TimelineX 4820T rear view

A full-fat Intel Core i5-430M processor barrels along at 2.26GHz, Turbo Boost punching it up to 2.53GHz when the occasion demands it, and Acer has obviously been practising its sleight of hand, as it's managed to slip in dedicated ATI graphics too.

It certainly makes for stunning performance. Our application benchmarks were dispatched with an overall score of 1.56, but that isn't the end of its talents. Thanks to the ATI Radeon HD 5650 graphics chipset, this laptop is also a capable gaming machine.

We had to push our Crysis benchmark all the way up to 1,600 x 1,200 resolution and High quality settings before the frame rate dipped to an unplayable level. For such a lightweight laptop, it's immensely impressive.

What's astounding, then, is that Acer has managed to combine breakneck speed with deep reserves of stamina. Switch over to the Intel HD graphics embedded in the Core i5-430M processor - a case of clicking the right mouse button and selecting the menu option - and the Acer will idle for more than nine hours before the battery gives out.

Swap back to the more powerful ATI chipset and push the Acer to its limits, and you'll still get 1hr 42mins of use before the TimelineX comes limping back to the mains socket.

1 2
Subscribe to PC Pro magazine. We'll give you 3 issues for £1 plus a free gift - click here
User comments

Almost - not quite

Once again Acer produce a product that makes you wonder just who they are marketing it at. Sure it has a fast processor and seperate graphics but I would tend to disagree with 'precious little compromise when it comes to features'.
One would assume laptops of this screen size are aimed at serious mobile users / businessmen so its great thet include a DVD drive I believe it misses the mark when there is no firewire, and without an ExpressCard port, no means of adding one, and no 3G ability. Also no 'also no always-on USB port.
Certainly not one for the business traveller then.
Looks like I'll still have to save up for a Sony!

By strudders on 11 Jun 2010

Separate Numeric Keypad

Your photo suggests that this model has a separate numeric keypad, but photos on other reviews of supposedly the same machine do not. Can you confirm that your photo is of the correct machine and that the 14" model does indeed have a numeric keypad?

By angwinp on 21 Aug 2010

Separate Numeric Keypad

Your photo suggests that this model has a separate numeric keypad, but photos on other reviews of supposedly the same machine do not. Can you confirm that your photo is of the correct machine and that the 14" model does indeed have a numeric keypad?

By angwinp on 27 Aug 2010

Is this still available?

I've just seen your review of the 5820, which is the 15 inch version of this model, which you rate very highly. But I would prefer the 14 inch version, but cannot find it anywhere. Various sites suggest the 4820T is discontinued. It seems odd where the 5820T has only just been reviewed, and yet the 4820T is being discontinued? Do you know if this could be true?

By Ian_Davies on 29 Nov 2010

Is this still available?

I've just seen your review of the 5820, which is the 15 inch version of this model, which you rate very highly. But I would prefer the 14 inch version, but cannot find it anywhere. Various sites suggest the 4820T is discontinued. It seems odd where the 5820T has only just been reviewed, and yet the 4820T is being discontinued? Do you know if this could be true?

By Ian_Davies on 1 Dec 2010

Is this still available?

I've just seen your review of the 5820, which is the 15 inch version of this model, which you rate very highly. But I would prefer the 14 inch version, but cannot find it anywhere. Various sites suggest the 4820T is discontinued. It seems odd where the 5820T has only just been reviewed, and yet the 4820T is being discontinued? Do you know if this could be true?

By Ian_Davies on 1 Dec 2010

Is this still available?

I've just seen your review of the 5820, which is the 15 inch version of this model, which you rate very highly. But I would prefer the 14 inch version, but cannot find it anywhere. Various sites suggest the 4820T is discontinued. It seems odd where the 5820T has only just been reviewed, and yet the 4820T is being discontinued? Do you know if this could be true?

By Ian_Davies on 1 Dec 2010

Processor??

Have they changed the specification for the 4820T? Current sales literature suggests that its been downgraded from a Core i5-430M to a Core i3-350M. The price has also fallen so is this spec now out of date?

By Andy_Baker_ISP on 10 Dec 2010

Leave a comment

You need to Login or Register to comment.

(optional)

Latest Category Reviews
Samsung Galaxy Tab S 10.5 review

Samsung Galaxy Tab S 10.5

Category: Tablets
Rating: 5 out of 6
Price: £395
Chillblast Defiant 2 Mini review

Chillblast Defiant 2 Mini

Category: Laptops
Rating: 5 out of 6
Price: £899
Lenovo Miix 2 8in review

Lenovo Miix 2 8in

Category: Tablets
Rating: 3 out of 6
Price: £330
Toshiba Satellite S70-B review

Toshiba Satellite S70-B

Category: Laptops
Rating: 3 out of 6
Price: £1,199
Compare reviews: Laptops

advertisement

Most Commented Reviews
Latest News Stories Subscribe to our RSS Feeds
Latest Blog Posts Subscribe to our RSS Feeds
Latest Features
Latest Real World Computing

advertisement

Sponsored Links
 

 
SEARCH
Loading
WEB ID
SIGN UP

Your email:

Your password:

remember me

advertisement


Hitwise Top 10 Website 2010
 
 

PCPro-Computing in the Real World Printed from www.pcpro.co.uk

Register to receive our regular email newsletter at http://www.pcpro.co.uk/registration.

The newsletter contains links to our latest PC news, product reviews, features and how-to guides, plus special offers and competitions.