The Acer Aspire 4553G is probably the first locally-available laptop sporting an AMD triple-core CPU. The CPU sits somewhere between Intel’s Core i3 and Core i5 systems (not just because it has 3 cores).
The unit is fairly heavy but is expected in its category — not meant to be lugged around but, IMO, more like a desktop replacement unit. The 14.1-inch screen has a maximum resolution of 1366×768 pixels. The display is bright and crisp although I found that cranking the brightness to the highest setting makes it a bit washed out.
The dark glossy lid has those subtle striped lines but that didn’t prevent the surface to be a fingerprint-magnet. The inside surface is the same except for the dark-gray brushed-metal finish on the palm rest area.
The laptop comes with a full-sized keyboard feature that Acer-signature flat, island-type keys that maximizes the keyboard real estate. The extra-large trackpad is flushed to the left side and, although the left and right buttons are not separated, the larger-than usual size makes up for it.
The Aspire 4553G is un-assuming and what you’d expect from a workhorse laptop — a mix of good specs and an affordable price point. Check out the specs of the review unit we got (with Linpus OS pre-installed):
Acer Aspire AS4553G
14.1″ display @ 1366×768
AMD Phenom II X3 N830 2.1GHz
ATI Radeon HD5470 512MB
2.0GB DDR3 RAM
WiFi 802.11 b/g/n
From what I’ve read around, the triple-core Phenom II X3 is actually a quad-core X4 CPUs with one of the cores disabled. The crippling of that single core allowed AMD to offer a mid-range CPU between the dual-core X2 and the more expensive quad-core X4 CPUs (see the CPU ID screen shots below).
The CPU runs at a maximum speed of 2.1GHz for each of the 3 cores (each core has 1 thread only). The graphics is switchable between the more powerful ATI Radeon HD5470 with 512MB of DDR2 RAM and the on-board ATI Mobility Radeon HD 4250 used in power-saving mode.
The HD5470 is still an entry-level DirectX 11 graphics card so don’t expect this to be able to handle high-detail settings when playing games.
Since the laptop did not come with Windows OS pre-installed, I had to load it up with Windows 7 Ultimate so we can get the Experience Index scores.
The X3 N830 processor got a sub-score of 6.2 on Windows Experience Index (sits between a Core i3 330M at 5.9 and a Core i5 520M at 6.7). The graphics card (ATI HD5470) got the lowest sub-score of 5.0 but it’s still a pretty decent score nonetheless.
As for battery performance, I got split results depending on which graphics card I used in the testing. When running on the discreet graphics, I get a battery rating of just over 2 hours. However, when using the integrated graphics, battery life improved and can go close to 4 hours on a single charge (set in power-saving mode).
The Acer Aspire 4553G looks to be a good mid-range laptop considering the specs that came with it. With a retail price starting at Php29,990 (without OS), it can still hold its ground even when compared to counterparts running Core i3 CPUs.