Acer’s newly revamped E series promises surprising performance , improved computing power and more value for its mid range laptops. One of those is the impressive Acer Aspire E5-553G-F55F, a laptop for everyday (power)users.
Not only does the new Acer Aspire E5-553G-F55F feature an improved design with many colors to choose from, it also offers some of the best hardware choices you can possibly get at such a price: sub $700 at the time of this review.
This notebook manages to tick almost all the boxes required to make it an exceptional deal and although not iconic enough, this new Acer will surely find its way to many users who value performance more than looks or brand name.
The Acer Aspire E5-553G-F55F is equipped with one of the best mobile processors from AMD: the FX-9800P unit. This quad core CPU has a clock speed ranging from 2.7 GHz to 3.6 GHz, a cache size of 2 megabytes and a thermal design power of 15 Watts. Similar to a popular Intel processor, the Core i7-6500U, the FX keeps pace with the Intel in spite of the smaller cache size. The main selling point here is the seamless integration with the graphics card developed by the same manufacturer which intimately shares technology and instruction sets with this processor, offering a range of nifty features to power users such as Vulkan support, AMD Eyefinity, AMD Dual Graphics, native 4K support and many others.
Benchmark tests rate the AMD FX-9800P at just under 4300 points, although the sample size is still small. This result means it can keep up with the aforementioned Intel processor quite well and will handle almost every task you may want to throw at it without delays.
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System memory is surprising to say the least. The Acer Aspire E5-553G-F55F comes with 16 gigabytes of DDR4 SDRAM installed as 2 x 8GB sticks. Although this amount is more than anyone will likely ever need, for those animators, engineers, film editors or just power hungry users, there’s always the option to extend the memory up to 24 gigabytes (8GB + 16GB) or 32 gigabytes (2 x 16GB) of DDR4 system memory. I think this is a crazy good option to have on a mid range laptop that costs under $700.
I’d even consider the Acer breaking down before software has a chance of evolving to fully take advantage of all that system memory.
Storage is also satisfying. The E5-553G-F55F has two storage mediums: a one terabyte hard disk drive on which to store large files, media collections, photos, etc and a 128 gigabyte SATA/600 solid state drive, perfect for installing the operating system on in order obtain blazing fast boot times, virtually no system lag and nearly no delays in opening programs or games.
As you can see, all hardware choices are there to make this laptop a sweet, sweet deal.
Graphics and Display
The Acer Aspire E5-553G-F55F has a dedicated entry-level video card, the AMD Radeon R7 M440, which is basically a rebranded and slightly improved version of the previous M340 model, giving similar gaming performance ratings. You’ll be able to get decent frame rates on medium and high settings for games which are older than 3 years – think BioShock Infinte, Battlefield 4, CS:GO and such, but won’t be able to play new and demanding games. So, the video card will assist with graphics programs more than it will enable games to be played.
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This notebook features a 15.6 inch TFT LCD screen with an LED-backlit FHD display. Unfortunately, no IPS technology is present, so viewing angles may suffer and color reproduction may not be as vivid and crisp as you’d expect.
This new model has the USB-C reversible standard, alongside the usual interface options. Here they are:
- 1 x USB-C port
- 2 x USB 3.0 ports
- 1 x USB 2.0 port
- 1 x HDMI-out
- 1 x RJ-45
- 1 x Audio combo jack
- 1 x SD card reader
- 1 x DVD-Writer
A new 802.11ac wireless protocol (up to three times faster than the previous n standard) is present within the Acer Aspire E5-553G-F55F, which also features built-in Bluetooth 4.0 and 10/100/1000 LAN.
The Acer doesn’t shine here. I’d say it’s more of a device designed for home/office/college use and not travel. It’s not thin (1.2″), it’s not light (4.9 pounds) and it’s definitely not small at all. Plus, the 4-cell Lithium Ion battery has a capacity of just 2850 mAh, and although official battery life numbers haven’t been released, I can only assume it won’t hold a charge for more than 6 hours. It’s not a shameful result, but I don’t think serious travelers should consider the Acer, but rather folks who don’t go around much, and when they do, they go by car.
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The Acer Aspire E5-553G-F55F is a true powerhouse. It features advanced hardware a good display, great resolution, many updated modern features and a host of interface and connectivity/networking options. Although portability isn’t its main strength, the Acer will fit well in the hands of a power user.