Acer Nitro 5 (2021) Review – Power Hour
It’s the end of the first part of 2021 and we once again got our hands on the formidable Acer Nitro 5, one of the few laptops in the market that harnesses the power of the Nvidia RTX graphics card and Ray-tracing rather easily.
It might be a refresh with some adjustments here and there, but is it still the affordable powerhouse that many like it to be? Perhaps so.
Let’s dive in, shall we?
Like before, its changes are not that apparent at first glance but its design has been slightly tweaked for better cooling. Its new quad-exhaust system makes gaming on the machine quite cool to the touch while its fan works overtime during intense moments, even with the Turbo mode on.
Its sturdy plastic still feels nice, along with the hinges now being a bit sturdier than before and the red accents parts now relegated towards behind where the charging port and vents are.
Speaking of which, the charging port still feels finicky to insert the battery charger, where it might be disorientating when you get your hands on it for the first time.
And as of I/O points, it’s still similar to last year with 1 USB Type-C port, 3 USB ports, an HDMI port, one 3.1mm headphone jack, and a Kensington lock. All are situated between both sides for easy access.
Our review unit specs are as followed:
ACER NITRO 5 AN515-45-R49W
- CPU: AMD Ryzen™ 9 5900HX
- GPU: Nvidia RTX 3080,
- RAM: 16GB RAM DDR5
- Storage: 1TB storage SSD
- Display: 15.6 inch 165Hz 1440P
- Price: RM8,999
Within the software side of the Nitro 5, returns the Nitrosense app which lets you control the power plan of your Nitro 5, along with the fan speed and keyboard LED colors. It also includes the Geforce Experience built-in, any updates that require the Nvidia drivers to update to the latest firmware will now be done within one application. And I dig it.
This year’s edition of the Nitro 5 is amazing, performance-wise. With the RTX 3080 coursing around the circuits (not to mention the CPU prowess of the 5th-Gen Ryzen 9), it’s no mean feat to see the gaming running Raytracing-powered games such as Remedy’s Control rather smoothly thanks to DLSS.
Though from the options menu, it does shrink the resolution size quite a bit to make sure that the game maintains a stable 60fps during gameplay.
RAM Memory isn’t even a problem with this version of the Nitro 5, but those with the 8GB RAM setup might get some slowdowns as the newer games are released in the near future.
But for now, the other benchmark games that we have tested like The Division 2, GTA V, Genshin Impact and even Car Detailing Simulator runs on Ultra/High settings without a hitch, all with solid framerate all across the board.
One curious test we did involves playing the WRC 10 demo which was available during our time with the laptop. We tested it on high and at 165hz refresh rate makes for an interesting and quite fun affair with the high framerates, making pin-point accurate steering rather easy, thanks to the high refresh rate.
The version that we reviewed sets a mighty price point of MYR 8,999, though that does include the aforementioned additions of an RTX 3080 and the 5th Gen Ryzen that will set you rather comfortably for this generation of games for at least till 2026.
Most of the Nitro 5 lineup is now fully using either Ryzen 7s or the sole Ryzen 5 for the cheapest options (which cost around MYR 3,699) so AMD will have your back in the CPU department, be it for Editing, Video Gaming, or even CAD usages. Though this review unit has 1 TB SSD storage, the rest only includes the 512GB variants, so an HDD or SSD storage upgrade is necessary.
And lastly, the bottom parts of the laptop are covered with the warranty stickers so there’s no easy access to replace them should you are still in the coverage range. So perhaps upgrade the RAM or SSD stuff before bringing it home.
I do approve of Acer’s way of a refresh being mostly the same within the outside but being totally different within the similar-looking exterior of the Nitro 5.
It’s ready for anything, all the while still looking slick and subtle as before. It just works as intended.
Review Unit Provided by Acer Malaysia.