Notebooks Guide

Acer Aspire S5 review

Acer Aspire S5 - Aiming High

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Launch SRP S$1798

Overall rating 8.5/10
Design:
9
Features:
8.5
Performance:
8
Value:
8
Mobility:
9
THE GOOD
Thin and Light, but robust
Magicflip hides ports
Thunderbolt port
Very portable
THE BAD
Power button not easily accessible
Screen resolution is weak
Price point


Battery Life and Portability Index

Battery Life and Portability Index

Much of an Ultrabook’s worth is dependent on its battery life. The more work you can squeeze out of the notebook while on the go, the better it is to bring it along with you. In terms of specifications, the Acer Aspire S5 is closest to the Intel Reference Ultrabook, and the Samsung Series 9. The Vaio T is an Ultrabook with a hybrid mechanical drive, while the HP Envy 4 is an Ultrabook with discrete graphics. 

Test Notebooks Compared
Specifications/Notebook Acer Aspire S5 Samsung
Series 9 (2012)
Sony VAIO T HP Envy 4

Intel Ultrabook
(Ivy Bridge)

Processor Intel Core i5-3317U
(1.7GHz)
Intel Core i7-3517U
(1.9GHz)
Intel Core i5-3317U
(1.7GHz)
Intel Core i5-3317U
(1.7GHz)
Intel Core i5-3427U
(1.8GHz)
Chipset  Intel UM77  Intel UM77 Intel UM77 Intel UM77  Intel UM77
Memory  4GB DDR3  4GB DDR3 8GB DDR3 8GB DDR3  4GB DDR3
Storage 128GB SSD 128GB SSD 500GB HDD with 32GB SSD Cache 500GB HDD with 32GB SSD Cache 256GB SSD
Video Intel HD Graphics 4000 Intel HD Graphics 4000 Intel HD Graphics 4000 AMD Radeon HD 7670M Intel HD Graphics 4000
Battery 4-Cell Li-ion /
35Wh
4-Cell Li-ion /
44Wh
6-Cell Li-ion /
45Wh
4-Cell Li-ion /
62Wh
6-Cell Li-ion /
47Wh
Dimensions 324 x 227 x 15mm 313.8 x 218.5 x 12.9mm 323 x 226 x 17.8mm 340 x 235.8 x 19.8mm 329 x 223 x 16mm
Weight 1.2kg 1.16kg 1.6kg 1.8kg 1.46kg

Our battery tests are done using Futuremark’s Powermark benchmark. It’s run on the “balanced” setting, which simulates opening and closing of different programs like browsers and word editors. To make it more balanced, the benchmark also throws in some 3D rendering and managing photos and videos.

From our test runs, the battery capacity of the HP Envy 4 is the highest, despite the fact it has a discrete graphics engine. The notebook also a battery capacity nearly double of the other compared machines and that has helped it garner a good battery mileage. Here, the Acer Aspire S5 didn’t fare too well (168 minutes), even though it doesn’t have a 400nits screen (Series 9), a mechanical drive (Vaio T) or discrete graphics (Envy 4). That’s because its battery capacity is the smallest of the lot, likely a conscious decision by Acer to keep the weight of the notebook in check.

While the overall battery life seems a tad 'limited', it proves that it has fairly low power consumption, at a decent 12.5 watts. With low demand on its small battery, coupled with its weight, volume and battery life - elements crucial for deriving the portability index ratio - the Acer Aspire S5 even manages to outrank the Intel Reference Ultrabook in terms of portability. Not too shabby at all.