Over the last decade or so the term Gaming Laptops has been synonymous with either the Alienware or the Razer Blade. But in the past couple of years, the industry has seen a sudden growth in this category – “Budget Gaming Notebooks” with almost every company having a powerful laptop with quality gaming grade hardware under the $1000 mark in their lineup. And the Aspire VX 15 marks Acer’s entry into this segment. Let’s take a deep look into this device.
The VX 15 looks exactly how a gaming/business laptop should look like. It looks like a toned down and a more socially acceptable version of the Acer Predator laptop. The first thing you’ll notice when you look a the laptop are those huge dark red dual air vents (Acer’s new cooling solution; individual vents for the GPU and CPU). Some might find that as an overkill but to me – they look incredibly good.The top is made up of brushed metal-like plastic and has the Acer branding in the centre and is surrounded by two red accents. One more thing that stands out to me is the silver central hinge. Imparts a really good look to the device.
Coming to the hardware department, you’ll find that Acer has packed quite a lot of hardware for a quite a reasonable price. You get an Intel i7 7700HQ – A Quad Core processor clocked in at a healthy 2.8 Ghz(Turbo BOost up to 3.8GHz), 8 GB of DDR4 RAM, 1 TB of HDD Storage and a GeForce GTX 1050 Ti. Thanks to the latest Pascal Technology, companies can now incorporate the GPUs into the laptops in such a way that there is ALMOST no difference in the performance from their desktop counterparts which unfortunately wasn’t the case with the earlier generations of GPUs. Speaking of the GPU, the 1050 Ti is quite an able one. It definitely is a bang for buck graphics card and can take on any of the latest games at 1080p extremely well.
The VX 15 uses a 55 Wh battery. Acer could have packed in a larger battery since it’s thicker and bigger than other notebooks of its kind and most of them actually have a larger battery. It gives about 6 ½ hours of general usage and around 1 hr of gaming just like any other gaming notebook in this price segment.
This is where the VX 15 trumps its competition. The VX 15 has almost every port you could ask for. It comes with 2 USB 3.0 ports, 1 USB 2.0 port, 1 HDMI port, 1 Ethernet jack, an SD Card Reader, a Headphone/MIcrophone Jack and the best of all, a USB Type-C port which is sadly missing from its competitors like Dell Inspiron 15 and the HP Omen 15.
Meh……..Not exactly great but not too bad either. Definitely better than its direct competitor – Dell Inspiron 15. It is a 15.6 inch 1080p IPS panel. The screen is a little dull and is not so colour accurate either (65% Adobe RGB). It’s perfectly fine for 1080p gaming (since it’s the sweet spot for GTX 1050 Ti) and media consumption. But not recommended for photo or video editing purposes. One more thing to note are those really thick bezels. They are the first things you’ll notice when you open the lid. Just like the average display even this is another cost cutting measure.
This is where Acer falls short. Here in India, the Acer Aspire VX 15 is available only in a single configuration of i7, GTX 1050 Ti, 8GB RAM and 1TB of HDD storage and retails for around INR 89,000/- while in other countries, it is being sold in various options ranging from an i5, GTX 1050, 8GB of RAM and 256GB SSD (at a jaw dropping $800 USD) to an i7, GTX 1050 Ti, 16GB of RAM and 512GB of SSD and 1TB of HDD(for $1200 USD). So, for those of you on a really tight budget it’s better to look elsewhere.
Keyboard and Track-pad:
Good news here. The keyboard and track-pad are very good. The extra thickness of the laptop gives the keys added travel distance (1.6 mm) and keys are actually fun to use. They have a good feel and are also spaced well; thanks to the larger body of the laptop. The WASD keys and the track-pad have a red outline and even the back light is also of red colour. Acer makes sure you won’t forget you’re using a gaming machine even for a second. The track-pad also feels good. Luckily, it’s using native Windows Drivers. So, there won’t be any problems with it.
- In conclusion, the Acer Aspire VX 15 is a really powerful entry-level gaming notebook and is clearly one of the best in this segment because. I would strongly recommend this device to anyone who wants a gaming laptop under the INR 1,00,000/- price point. Sure like I mentioned earlier, there are many other options like the Dell Inspiron 15, Lenovo Legion Y520 and HP Omen. But all of them are a bit too mainstream and generic in my opinion. Acer brings in a lot more character with the VX 15. And with the all new hardware it is bound to last you for a while and serve you well.