Acer Spin 5 (2020) review: A 2-in-1 that competes with the best of them

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Josh Goldman / Tips Clear

Honestly, I’ve never been impressed with Acer’s spin-to-in-one laptop. They were fine but against Lenovo yoga, Jealous of hp or Spector x360 And Dell’s XPS 13 2-in-1 They just can’t compete. Then, the new Spin 5 came out earlier this year and it was hard not to take notice as it literally stood above the competition.

like

  • Excellent small, ultralight body with a tall 3: 2-ratio display
  • Built-in Wacom Active Pen
  • Lots of connectivity options

do not like it

  • No mic or camera privacy features
  • Hinges may be wrong

Co-engineered with Intel as part of this Project Athena Program, Acer updated the design and features to improve its mobility, but also added a brighter 2,256×1,504-pixel resolution, 13.5-inch touchscreen. The 3: 2 screen ratio gives you more vertical space and, since it is roughly the size of a sheet of paper, is more comfortable to use for noting and sketching with the active pen included.

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The spin 5’s slim body is made of lightweight magnesium alloy.

Josh Goldman / Tips Clear

The Spin 5 was originally launched at $ 899 (around £ 685 or AU $ 1,295), but it preceded the epidemic. You can get one Direct from Acer for $ 999 With a 10th gen Intel Core i5 or go up A core i7 for $ 1,099. In the UK, it sells for £ 1,099 And AU $ 2,162 in Australia. All in all, while the deal is not as good, Spin 5 is still reasonably priced for what you’re getting.

Acer Spin 5 SP513-54N-74V2

Price by review

$ 1099

Display Size / Resolution

13.5-inch 2256 × 1504-pixel touch display

The processor

1.3GHz Intel Core i7-1065G7

Memory

16 GB LPDDR3 3,200 MHz Dual-Channel

The graphics

Integrated Intel Iris Plus Graphics

Storage

512GB NVMe PCIe SSD

Ports

2x USB-C (Thunderbolt 3), 2x USB-A, HDMI out, audio / mic jack, microSD card slot

Networking

802.11ax (Wi-Fi 6), Bluetooth 5.0

Operating System

Windows 10 home (64 bit)

Weight

2.7 pounds (1.2 kg)

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13.3-inch Asus Zenbook 13 vs 13.5-inch Acer Spin 5 (right).

Josh Goldman / Tips Clear

Less scrolling, more work

A slightly longer display may not seem like much, but it gives you more room to work without increasing its size compared to a 13.3-inch 16: 9 laptop. For example, the Spin 5 is about the same width as the super-small Asus ZenBook 13 UX325JA, but has about the same screen height as a 15.6-inch laptop. So without increasing the size of the laptop, you can keep more of what you are working on the screen. And the massive performance of just 2.7 pounds (1.2 kg) certainly did not affect its weight.

It’s like a digital sheet of paper

The extra vertical space is good for working on two-in-one in the position of your laptop, but it is also good in tablet mode. The 3: 2 ratio and 13.5 inch size make the display’s dimensions almost identical A4 size paper. Add in light weight and you can comfortably use the Spin 5 on your hand as you write on the screen – something that is a bit awkward with a larger 14-inch model like the Yoga C940. Like the Yoga, however, the Acer includes a small active pen that stores and charges in a garage on the right.

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The slim pen works well for quick sketches and taking notes.

Josh Goldman / Tips Clear

The tip of the pen looks good on the Gorilla Glass display. Like writing a wax pencil on the glass. There is enough friction that you don’t feel like you’re writing on the glass but the movement is still fluid. I used it a lot with Microsoft’s OneNote and Whiteboard applications and it worked perfectly, even if it was a bit thin for me to use for a short time.

In general, the design of the hinge is similar to what you find on the other two-in-one. Acer designed them to pick it up a bit when you’re using it as a laptop. However, I did notice that the hinge sometimes missed when opening it, requiring me to close and reopen it to get me in line.

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All your charging options are on the left.

Josh Goldman / Tips Clear

A connection is worth mentioning

Spin 5 has two USB-A and two USB-C ports. The latter are Thunderbolt 3 And they can also be used for charging. However, it also has a barrel-connector charger so you can use the USB-C port for other things. Unfortunately, all three are on the left, so you can only charge it from that side. Still, with a full-size HDMI out and a microSD card slot, this laptop has more connections than most.

You can find the rest of Spin 5 on Premium Two-in-One. It has a comfortable backlit keyboard, with a smooth fingerprint touchpad fitted with a responsive fingerprint reader. The speakers are on the back of the laptop and can be heard even though it is in spin 5 mode. They are nothing special when you turn off the DTS audio processing involved.

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No mic or webcam kills the switch for privacy.

Josh Goldman / Tips Clear

The webcam and mics are good, although in low light the video is definitely heavy with noise reduction in the place where I looked like a painting. Virtually no Chromebook, Windows laptop, or MacBook has good full-HD-or-better webcams, which is now a shame that everyone is using them nonstop. Also, there is no webcam privacy shutter or mic kill switch on the keyboard, which is competition at this price.

Performance is equal with leaders

Despite the slim body, the Acer Spin 5 has all the performances of its rivals (although it is a bit hot on your lap at times). This will cover you for office tasks, school work and basic photo and video editing, so some light content creation is not out of the question with Intel Iris Plus integrated graphics. This sum retained or surpassed similarly configured models such as the C940 and Spector x360 13.

As for battery life, it hit our streaming video test with 51 minutes, a solid brightness of 51 minutes and a set volume of 50%. What Acer hopes to get is a bit shy, so it is possible to get better battery life with some more power management. I can say that I had no problem writing, web browsing and streaming music for the entire 8-hour workday and still had an estimated 30% (1 hour, 50 minutes) remaining on the battery.

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Case ended.

Josh Goldman / Tips Clear

Acer Spin 5 is finally something special. With its long screen, compact lightweight metal body, great performance and overall fine feature set, it has almost everything you will get at a competitive premium to-on. There is still some room for improvement, but there is no real deal breaker.

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