I apologise in advance as I am not very technological so please don't expect a review full of specifications and what-not because I just haven't a clue!!! I am hoping that people will appreciate this review as being simple and to the point rather than being blinded by numbers and abbreviations. :) This is just basically my take on the laptop, the good and bad points rather than a blow by blow account of what it has, something which anyone can get online when they look for the Acer Aspire 5552.
My Acer Aspire is only around a year old and to be honest it is ready to be scrapped. Not good for me as I have to get a new laptop but good that I can give a review on it and point out all the things that may go wrong with it (Through no fault of the laptops, mainly mine)
The look of the laptop itself in my opinion is rather formal and business like plain black, large and rectangular. Closed, the lid of the laptop has the word 'acer' in reflective silver and the rest of the lid is raised about 2mm higher than this. The lid has a pattern on it which reminds me of the metal that fire escape stairs are made of with the grain of rice criss-cross pattern on it.
Opening it up, the laptop has a flat keyboard with chiclet keys which basically means that each key on the keyboard is set individually and is floating so there is a gap around them and below them where dust and dirt can get in and hide. (Note to self....and others....do not think that it is a good idea to try and prise the keys off to clean under them as you will come across one...or 3 in my case that don't want to move and you end up snapping them off their springs).
The mouse touchpad is about 7cm wide and 4cm high with an extra 1cm below where the mouse buttons are. At the side of the touchpad there is an arrow spanning the height which shows you that you can scroll up and down the webpage that you are on by sliding your finger up and down it. The buttons are actually one long button which you can use like a normal mouse by clicking on the respecive side. I think that it would have been better if it had been split into two as I have noticed, because the middle is static, when you press the side that you need, usually the left for me, it tends to stick down and you have to press really hard a good few times for it to unstick itself.
The screen is a 15.6'' HD LCD screen and has a built in webcam, I am not sure what megapixel the webcam is but I have searched online and am led to believe that it is 1.3mp. To put it bluntly, it is not really much use as the brightness through the webcam is reduced substantially no matter where or of what you are trying to take a picture or video. The image that you see is rather blurred and 'toned down' of colour. The screen itself is nice and large and allows you to see your pages clear and with ease. The only problem that I had with the screen (entirely my fault) was that I picked it up **shock horror** with my thumb and forefinger underneath the webcam a few times and caused the screen to crack rather badly. (I told my partner that our 2 year old had done it because she is his princess and he wouldnt shout at her, and wouldn't buy me a new one. But in all fairness she did stand on it when it was closed 3 days later so really I was just anticipating it)
As I have not had the screen repaired yet the 'crack' is now around 10cm wide on the right and splits off into 4 more cracks :( Also the inside by the charger is crackling, not to sure what that is though !!
On the left side of the laptop there is a series of open slits which I assume is a fan ut even from new I have only known it to blow out hot air, I have also burned my arm on it once or twice, and on the block in the middle of the charger while I am on the subject of burning!!
There is also USB ports, a Wired Network Port, a headphone socket, a charger socket and another round socket with a bluetooth symbol next to it.
On the right side there is two USB ports and a 'DVD-Super Multi DL Drive', I just use that to play CD's!!!!
The The Battery Life on the Acer Aspire 5552 is not very long to be truthful, in my opinion anyway. I only seem to get at the most an hour out of it when it has been fully charged. I only use it to search the internet and play games on Facebook etc. I dont know if this is the reason why but it has been like this from new so I know that it is not something that I have done to it.
On the subject of internet browsing I find that it is rather fast and without complications, it is easy to switch from one page from another and to have multiple tabs open at the same time without compromising the speed or effectiveness of the other pages.
I have searched online to try and get some of the Specifications that I have already said I am unsure of just to try and give a better all round review.
I have used www.acerdirect.co.uk
Processor family AMD Athlon II
L2 Cache 1 MB
Processor front side bus 3200 MHz
Motherboard chipset -
Processor Model P320
Processor Clock Speed 2100 MHz
Number of hard drives installed 1
Total Storage Capacity 320 GB
Hard disk interface Serial ATA
Hard disk rotational speed 5400 rpm
LED backlight Y
Display Resolution 1366 x 768 pixels
Display diagonal 15.6 "
Display number of colours 16.7 M
Aspect Ratio 16:9
Memory Clock Speed 1066 MHz
Memory layout 1024+2048 MB
Maximum internal memory 8 GB
Memory slots 2x SO-DIMM
Internal memory type DDR3-SDRAM
Internal memory 3072 MB
Card reader integrated Y
Compatible memory cards MMC,SD
Discrete graphics adapter model UMA
On-board graphics adapter model Y
Graphics adapter family -
Optical drive type DVD Super Multi DL
full-size keyboard Y
Built-in camera Y
Megapixel 1.3 MP
3G network access module N
Wireless LAN (WLAN) connection Y
Ethernet LAN connection Y
Cabling technology 10/100/1000Base-T(X)
Wireless LAN type 802.11b/g/n
Operating system architecture 64-bit
Operating system provided Windows 7 Home Premium
eSATA/USB 3.0 ports quantity 0
eSATA/USB 2.0 ports quantity 0
USB 3.0 ports quantity 0
DisplayPorts quantity 0
HDMI ports quantity 0
ExpressCard slot N
eSATA ports quantity 0
Port replicator N
VGA (D-Sub) ports quantity 1
SmartCard slot N
CardBus PCMCIA slot type N
CardBus PCMCIA slots quantity 0
DVI port N
TV out port N
DC-in jack Y
S/PDIF out port N
Microphone, line-in jack Y
Speaker/ headphone/ line-out jack 1
Ethernet LAN (RJ-45) ports quantity 1
Modem (RJ-11) ports 0
IEEE 1394/Firewire ports quantity 0
USB 2.0 ports quantity 3
Infrared data port N
Password protection HDD,User,Supervisor,BIOS
Cable lock slot Kensington
WEIGHT & DIMENSIONS
Depth 253 mm
Width 381 mm
Height 24 mm
Weight 2600 g
Power supply 90 W
Number of battery cells 6 pcs
Energy Star certified Y
Compliance industry standards IEEE 802.3, IEEE 802.3u, IEEE 802.3ab
Hard disk drive, user password Y
Colour of product Black
Pointing device Touchpad
RRP 399.97 inc VAT
Overall, I think that I would recommend this laptop as most of the problems that I have outlined in this review have been down to myself and the fact that I haven't 100% taken care of it :( . I would give it 4/5 *****.
Actual model: Acer Aspire 5553G - which has the same spec as the 5552 in the title
This is my first purchase of an Acer laptop, which I've always considered a 'budget' range. Call me a snob if you want but I've always chosen my computers on build quality so have usually gone for IBM's or Apple.
Well, I will take back the budget name tag as this was a pleasant surprise when it arrived.
Out of the box the laptop looks very slick. The chassis is of that standard black plastic stuff and the screen lid has a glossy 'finger-print magnet' finish that is in style now. The right side houses the DVDRW drive and USB ports with the left side having the; ethernet, HDMI, USB/Esata, and headphone/mic inputs.
Opening up the lid reveals a nice brushed aluminium face plate, large trackpad that supports multi-touch functions and a keyboard WITH a number pad. The keyboard is also that 'island' key style made popular by Apple/Sony. The keys have a nice feel too them without been too spongy though i can see a potential for dust and breadcrumbs to get stuck under the keys.
The screen is 15.6" LED backlit lcd display with the glossy finish treatment so I can check myself out and make sure I have no stray bogies. Screen resolution is 1366x768 pixels with the 16:9 widescreen aspect and films do play nicely on it. In addition, there is a 1.3 Megapixel camera integrated into the lid for when you want to web chat or just be able to look at yourself as you use the laptop.
Well as my mother always says it's what inside that counts. This doesn't disappoint here either. It has an AMD Phenom II quad core processor, 4 GB of ram (which you can upgrade to 12 gb!), 320 GB hard drive and 2 graphics cards. One is the integrated for power saving and the other is a dedicated graphics card (ATI Radeon HD 5470) for when you want to play games. There is a button marked 'P' above the keyboard that sets it to this power saving mode.
It comes with the 64bit version of Windows 7 Home pre-loaded. This is soooo much better than Vista. There are no back up discs included so you will have to use the Acer back up tool to burn your own discs and applications for when it comes to restoring factory defaults. There are no bonus utilities like you would get on a Sony or Apple so you have to make do with the bundled burning/backup software and a subscription to some anti-virus programme Acer have done a deal with.
It's a nippy laptop. Cetainly the fastest one I have owned, so far. The Windows Experience scores aren't bad. Out of the box you get:
CPU - 6.9/7.9
Memory - 5.9/7.9
Graphics (Windows Aero) - 5.0/7.9
Gaming Graphics - 6.2/7.9
Hard Drive - 5.9/7.9
7.9 is the highest rating you can get and I'm sure with tweaking they can be improved if you're of that inclination.
It's reasonably quiet in use. I'm used to Apple Macbook/Macbook Pros which are near silent in use. This laptop never gets hot which is probably thanks to the AMD CPU which when I checked online consumes less power than it's Intel comparatives. When the fan kicks in it has a low hum which you don't notice unless in a quiet room. The fan only kicked in high speed once for about 2 minutes when I was playing one particularily frag-tastic level in Crysis. Yes, it can play Crysis. And pretty well. But then the game is 3 years old.
So with all this performance there has to a be a trade off, which is usually with the battery. Battery life is a pretty standard for laptops of this size with 4-5 hours on power saving mode. Play a game and watch a film and you'd be lucky to get half that. The standard battery is a 6-cell Lion and I'm not sure if larger ones are available. I get around 2.5 hours use playing a few game levels and streaming film/music.
SO IS IT ANY GOOD?
Well, Yes and No. I bought this without any research. Which is something you should really try and avoid, especially when buying computers. In fact, I was originally looking around for a netbook since my girlfriend had decided to 'steal' mine. I set off with a budget of 250 notes and this one cost under £270 delivered so I thought I would give it a go since it seemed like a lot of computer for the money. I later checked and saw it originally retailed for £700 only 7 months ago. I was pleased.
For £270, this is the best laptop around. For £700, I would say it's probably middle of the road. At that original RRP I think you will find better out there and if you're already going to spend that much then it's not too much extra to put in a bit more to get even better.
I do rate this laptop though and would happily pay double for it had I'd been in the market for a laptop. You have a quad core processor so ideal for applications that need multi-threading such as graphics software and even future utilities/software that will take advantage of this. You can upgrade this laptop quite abit, which is something I will look into. In addition, being an Acer the spares market is quite reasonable. A replacement keyboard is under £15 and a new screen is £50! I can't complain and definitely recommend you check this laptop out.