Technology

Acer finally has a 2-in-1 laptop that can compete with the Yoga


Josh Goldman/PJDM

Truthfully, I’ve by no means been too impressed with Acer’s Spin two-in-one laptops. They have been OK, however in opposition to Lenovo’s Yoga, HP’s Envy or Spectre x360 and Dell’s XPS 13 2-in-1 they simply could not compete. Then, the new Spin 5 arrived earlier this 12 months and it was laborious to not take discover as a result of it actually stood above the competitors. 

Like

  • Wonderful small, ultralight physique with a tall 3:2-ratio show
  • Constructed-in Wacom energetic pen
  • A lot of connectivity choices

Do not Like

  • No mic or digital camera privateness options
  • Hinges can get misaligned

Co-engineered with Intel as a part of its Project Athena program, Acer up to date the design and options to enhance its mobility, but in addition added a brilliant 2,256×1,504-pixel decision, 13.5-inch touchscreen. The three:2 display screen ratio provides you rather more vertical area and, since its roughly the scale of a sheet of paper, it is extra comfy to make use of for notetaking and sketching with the included energetic pen. 

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The Spin 5’s skinny physique is constituted of light-weight magnesium alloy. 


Josh Goldman/PJDM

The Spin 5 was initially priced beginning at $899, however that was earlier than the pandemic. You may get one direct from Acer for $999 with a 10th-gen Intel Core i5 or go as much as a Core i7 for $1,099. Within the UK, it sells for £1,099 and AU$2,162 in Australia. All in all, whereas the deal is not nearly as good, the Spin 5 remains to be fairly priced for the whole lot you are getting. 

Acer Spin 5 SP513-54N-74V2

Value as reviewed $1,099
Show dimension/decision 13.5-inch 2,256×1,504-pixel touchscreen
Processor 1.3GHz Intel Core i7-1065G7
Reminiscence 16GB LPDDR3 3,200MHz dual-channel
Graphics Built-in Intel Iris Plus Graphics
Storage 512GB NVMe PCIe SSD
Ports 2x USB-C (Thunderbolt 3), 2x USB-A, HDMI out, audio/mic jack, microSD card slot
Networking 802.11ax (Wi-Fi 6) , Bluetooth 5.0
Working system Home windows 10 Residence (64 bit)
Weight 2.7 kilos (1.2 kilograms)
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The 13.3-inch Asus ZenBook 13 versus the 13.5-inch Acer Spin 5 (proper). 


Josh Goldman/PJDM

Much less scrolling, extra working

The marginally taller show may not appear to be a lot however it does offer you extra room to work with out considerably growing its dimension in comparison with the everyday 13.3-inch 16:9 laptop computer. For instance, the Spin 5 is about the identical width because the super-small Asus ZenBook 13 UX325JA however it has roughly the identical display screen top as a 15.6-inch laptop computer. So with out considerably growing the scale of the laptop computer, you’ll be able to preserve extra of what you are engaged on, on the display screen. And at solely 2.7 kilos (1.2 kilograms) the bigger show undoubtedly did not affect its weight.

It is like a digital sheet of paper

The additional vertical area is good to have for engaged on the two-in-one in its laptop computer place, however it’s additionally good in pill mode. The three:2 ratio and 13.5-inch dimension makes the show roughly the scale of A4-size paper. Add within the gentle weight and you may comfortably use the Spin 5 in your arm as you write on the display screen — one thing that is a little bit awkward with a bigger 14-inch mannequin just like the Yoga C940. Just like the Yoga, although, Acer features a small energetic pen that shops and fees in a storage on the fitting aspect. 

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The slim pen works nicely for fast sketches and taking notes. 


Josh Goldman/PJDM

The pen’s tip feels good on the Gorilla Glass show. Kind of like a wax pencil writing on glass. There’s sufficient friction that you do not really feel such as you’re writing on glass however the motion remains to be fluid. I used it so much with Microsoft’s OneNote and Whiteboard apps and it labored completely, even when it is a little bit skinny for me to make use of for an prolonged time. 

Usually, the hinge design is much like what you’d discover on most different two-in-ones. Acer did design them to barely elevate the rear while you’re utilizing it as a laptop computer, which is good. I did discover that the hinges would sometimes grow to be misaligned when opening it, nonetheless, requiring me to shut and open it once more to get them in line. 

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All of your charging choices are on the left aspect. 


Josh Goldman/PJDM

A connection assortment price mentioning

The Spin 5 has two USB-A and two USB-C ports. The latter are Thunderbolt 3 and so they may also be used for charging. Nevertheless, it additionally has a barrel-connector charger so you should use each USB-C ports for different issues. All three are on the left aspect, although, so you’ll be able to solely cost it from that aspect. Nonetheless, together with a full-size HDMI out and a microSD card slot, this laptop computer has extra connections than most. 

The remainder of the Spin 5 is what you’d look forward to finding on a premium two-in-one. There is a comfy backlit keyboard paired with a easy precision touchpad with a responsive fingerprint reader embedded in it. The audio system are on the rear of the laptop computer and will be heard whatever the mode the Spin 5 is in. They’re nothing particular and to my ear sound higher while you shut off the included DTS audio processing. 

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No mic or webcam kill switches for privateness. 


Josh Goldman/PJDM

The webcam and mics are good, although in low gentle the video is certainly heavy with noise discount to the purpose the place I appeared like a portray. Nearly no Chromebooks, Home windows laptops or MacBooks have first rate full-HD-or-better webcams, which is a disgrace now that everybody’s utilizing them nonstop. Additionally, there is no such thing as a webcam privateness shutter or mic kill change on the keyboard, which the competitors has at this value. 

Efficiency is on par with the leaders

Regardless of the skinny physique, the Acer Spin 5 has all of the efficiency of its rivals (although it does get a little bit heat at occasions in your lap). This may have you ever coated for workplace duties, faculty work and fundamental picture and video enhancing, so some gentle content material creation is not out of the query with the Intel Iris Plus built-in graphics. It saved up or surpassed equally configured fashions just like the Yoga C940 and Spectre x360 13. 

As for battery life, it hit a strong Eight hours, 51 minutes on our streaming video check with the show brightness and quantity set to 50%. That is a little bit shy of what Acer expects you to get, so it ought to be doable to get higher battery life with some extra energy administration. I can say I had no downside writing, internet shopping and streaming music for a whole 8-hour workday and nonetheless had an estimated 30% (1 hour, 50 minutes) remaining on the battery. 

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Case closed.


Josh Goldman/PJDM

The Acer Spin 5 is lastly one thing particular. With its taller display screen, compact light-weight metallic physique, wonderful efficiency and total positive characteristic set, it has nearly the whole lot you will discover on competing premium two-in-ones. There’s nonetheless some room for enchancment, however no actual deal breakers. 

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Author

Joshua Goldman