The Bottom Line
Nov 26 2012 - Windows 8 is really a much better operating system when there is a touchscreen involved. Because of this, the Acer Aspire V5 571P is going to be a very attractive option thanks to its display and relatively affordable price. Its affordability does have its drawbacks though as its performance certainly trails much of the competition and certainly has much lower battery life. One distinction that this has over many other thin touchscreen display though is a DVD drive which is becoming much less common.
- Touchscreen Display Really Helps With Windows 8
- Affordable For Features
- Larger Hard Drive
- Poor Battery Life
- Performance Suffers From Slower CPU and Hard Drive
- Build Quality Not As Nice As Competition
- Intel Core i5-3317U Dual Core Mobile Processor
- 8GB PC3-12800 DDR3 Memory
- 750GB 5400rpm SATA Hard Drive
- 8x DVD+/-RW Dual Layer Burner
- 15.6" WXGA (1366x768) Multitouch Display With 1.3 Megapixel Webcam
- Intel HD Graphics 4000 Integrated Graphics
- Gigabit Ethernet, 802.11b/g/n Wireless, Bluetooth
- One USB 3.0, Two USB 2.0, HDMI, 3-in-1 Card Reader
- 15" x 10" x 1" @ 5.3 lbs.
- Windows 8, Office Starter
Review - Acer Aspire V5-571P-6473
Nov 26 2012 - The Aspire V5 laptops have become the new defacto low cost options from Acer. While they are certainly thinner at just one inch thick, it still retains a very plastic feel and appearance that is certainly not as nice as much of the competition. The use of plastics does not seem to help with the weight of the laptop either as it still weights a fairly hefty five and a third pounds.
Powering the Acer Aspire V5 571P is an Intel Core i5-3317U dual core processor, Now this is a slower clocked, lower voltage processor that is typically used in ultrabooks. This puts it at a disadvantage compared to more traditional laptops using higher clocked standard voltage processors. Having said that, this processor combined with the 8GB of DDR3 memory should provide sufficient performance for the average user who will most likely be using their laptop to browse the web, watching video, email and maybe some productivity software. The area where it suffers is more demanding tasks such as desktop video work or gaming.
While this comes with an ultrabook processor, the Aspire V5 571P does not meet the requirements from Intel for the classification. This is mainly from the various storage options that the laptop includes. It comes with a large capacity 750GB hard drive which provides it plenty space for storing applications, data and media files. The downside is that this drive spins at a slower 5400rpm spin rate. There is no additional SSD drive for caching like an ultrabook which means thins like booting up and loading programs are noticeably slower. If you do require additional storage space, Acer does include a USB 3.0 port for use with high speed external storage drives. It would be nice to see at least two like much of its competition but at least it has one. While optical drives are becoming less common, Acer does still include a dual layer DVD burner with the laptop for playback and recording of CD or DVD media.
Of course the standout feature of the Acer Aspire V5 571P is the touchscreen enabled display. The 15.6-inch display panel features full 10-point multitouch support for Windows 8 that makes navigating the new modern UI much easier. Of course it is covered by an edge to edge glass coating that is highly reflective and will require frequent cleaning. The downside is that like most affordable laptops, it uses a lower 1366x768 resolution which is disappointing as more and more tablets end up with higher resolutions. The graphics themselves are powered by the integrated Intel HD Graphics 4000 that are build into the processor. Don't expect to be doing much 3D gaming at all other than at the most basic or lowest resolutions on older games. What it does provide though is the ability to accelerate media encoding with Quick Sync compatible applications.
The keyboard for the Acer Aspire V5 is somewhat surprising. First, it uses a full layout with a numeric keypad that is becoming less common in this size range. In addition, the keyboard features backlighting which is uncommon among lower cost options. The keyboard uses an isolated key design that works fairly well although the keys do seem a bit narrower than usual to accommodate the numeric keypad. It feels sturdy for a budget system but has some flex to it. The trackpad is a nice large size and uses the integrated buttons for clicking which lacks some accuracy. The issue is more with the gesture support which is fine for simple ones but more complex ones for Windows 8 did not always work. At least the touchscreen helps compensate for this problem.
Probably the biggest issue with the Acer Aspire V5 571P is with the battery. It uses an internal four cell battery pack that features a very low 2500mAh capacity rating. This is much smaller than most 15-inch laptops. In digital video playback testing, the laptop was only able to run for just over three and a half hours before going into standby. This would be decent if it were up against more powerful traditional laptops but this one is designed with a low power processor similar to an ultrabook. Apple's MacBook Pro 15 with Retina with its slimmer profile and much larger battery is able to achieve over double what this Acer laptop can achieve.
With Windows 8's release, more and more laptops are being made available with touchscreens. The Acer Aspire V5 571P has a number of competitors including the ASUS VivoBook S400CA and Dell Inspiron 15z. The ASUS is priced roughly similar to the Acer's $750 price tag but is a true ultrabook with corresponding storage performance and a more compact 14-inch display. Dell's new Inspiron 15z is also an ultrabook but uses a similar sized 15.6-inch display with the option for a touchscreen display. It also features a nicer aluminum class exterior with better build quality but has a higher price tag. Both options lack an optical drive though which may be important to some even though they are losing their importance.