A notebook. For work, but also for pleasure. And all at an affordable price. The Acer Aspire 5 A515-52G-53PU seems to be able to fulfil all these checkboxes.
But do you have to cut back for the low price?
Scope of Delivery
The Acer Aspire 5 comes in a plain brown cardboard box. In addition to the obligatory documents for safety, warranty and operation, the notebook and a compact power supply unit with 19 volts and 3.42 amps are of course included. There are no other accessories on board.
The Externalities, the I/O and the Workmanship
The lid of the Aspire is made of brushed aluminium. This is unfortunately very susceptible to fingerprints. If you open the laptop, which can be done with one hand, you can see the IPS display, which resolves to 1,080 pixels with 1,920 pixels. The joints on its underside allow the lid to be opened up to 180 degrees. The viewing angle stability is, typical for IPS, at a very high level. The contrast and colours are good. However, working in direct sunlight is difficult, as the anti-reflective display has too little maximum brightness for this. That’s why it’s better to go to the shadow.
The manufacturer installs the webcam above the screen. Unfortunately, this only resolves with 720p and should only be used if no other front camera is available.
The I/O provides Acer with a wide range of equipment. On the left side, the user has access to a Kensington lock, a Gigabit Ethernet port, an HDMI port as well as one USB-C and one USB-3.0-A port each. It is laudable that the Taiwanese manufacturer has installed a full-size SD card reader.
The right side offers a round plug connection for the charger, two USB-A ports and a combo jack. Either a headset or headphones can be plugged into this.
At the bottom of the A515-52G are the two speakers. They have enough reserves to watch a film. Unfortunately they are unsuitable for listening to music; the sound is too thin and the bass lacks pressure. After all, the mids and highs are acceptable.
The 3.5 mm jack, on the other hand, also drives high-impedance headphones satisfactorily. The Beyerdynamic DT-990 Pro (250 Ohm) used for test purposes retained its analytical, full sound.
The laptop is missing a maintenance door. A total of ten screws have to be loosened to gain access to the innards. The user can then exchange both the RAM and the M.2 SSD.
The workmanship quality is at a level that could be improved. Thus, everything was cleanly deburred and the gap dimensions were right, but both the screen and the base can be bent relatively easily. Furthermore, the underside of the Aspire is made of very cheap plastic.
The keyboard is located below the display. This has flat, smooth key caps and single-stage lighting. The keyboard shines in serious white when you type, but the backlight can be deactivated. Permanently lit LEDs are just as impossible as changing their colour.
The typing feel of the keyboard is acceptable. The keys have a very defined, short keystroke. Unfortunately, the base of the laptop bends with moderate effort.
The edge at the bottom of the laptop on which the arms rest when typing is quite sharp and uncomfortable.
It is also unpleasant that the power button has been integrated into the keyboard. It is located at the top right, above the ten key field.
The touchpad is located below the keyboard. It has a plastic surface with good sliding properties. Thanks to its size and the Microsoft Precision driver it convinces.