on November 29, 2012
It seems that laptop manufacturers think that a touchscreen is only useful in 13" and smaller machines. I do actual work on my laptop and need at least a 15" display. The Acer V5-571P was the only 15" touchscreen laptop I could find that is available today (Nov '12) and reasonably priced. I picked up the Core i5 model from the Microsoft store for $699 and upgraded the memory to 8GB RAM and replaced the slow 500GB HD with a 256GB Samsung SSD. The motherboard supports 6Gbs SATA, so I'm able to get the full read/write speeds from my SSD (400MBs write / 500MBs read). Replacing the RAM was simple because there's a panel held on by 2 screws. Replacing the hard drive is something that will give many people pause. Basically the entire laptop needs to be disassembled to get access to the HDD. It takes about 30 minutes of careful disassembly; luckily there is an Acer repair manual PDF available to show you how. Windows 8 boots pretty quickly from a normal HDD, but after installing the SSD, it now goes from completely powered off to the log in screen in 8 seconds. The touchscreen works as advertised and I have no complaints about it. The keyboard and trackpad are not so great. The trackpad is placed a little too far left so that my palm is constantly brushing it and causing unintended behavior. The backlit keys are a nice addition. The battery it ships with is a low capacity (14.8V 2350mAH). This is too small for a Core i5 laptop; With normal use I'm able to get 3.5 hours out of it. I think the battery life will be less with the original hard drive since the Samsung SSD is super low power. I have not been able to find a high capacity battery for this model. I would gladly carry some extra bulk to increase the battery life. If anyone finds a compatible battery of at least 4400mAH, please let me know.
1) Touchscreen is fast and accurate; works as you would like
2) Price is fair for a 15" Core i5 dual core touchscreen laptop
3) Has enough ports to do what you need
4) Slim and relatively light for the power it packs
5) Includes a USB 3.0 port
6) Supports 6GBs SATA
7) Easy to upgrade the RAM
8) Supports dual monitor output (as most modern laptops do)
9) Power adapter is small and light
1) Keyboard is a bit cheap - some keys temporarily stick as you're typing
2) Touchpad works fine, but is a bit large so at times is accidentally touched
3) Battery life is not great (3.5 hours) and Acer doesn't offer a high capacity battery (yet?)
4) Build quality feels cheap and plasticky
5) The Ethernet+VGA dongle is less than ideal
6) If you're brave, it's worth replacing the HDD with an SSD.
7) The SD card slot is too shallow. You can't leave a card in the slot when you travel or it will be broken/lost because it sticks out too much.
8) Speaker sound quality is poor
9) Doesn't wake from sleep when you open the lid (can be either a Win8 bug or hardware issue)
on January 1, 2013
Hardware wise, it's excellent and you're getting a lot of bang for your buck. Unfortunately, this laptop was plagued with wifi problems for the whole time I owned it. It would not maintain a wifi connection for more than 20 minutes before completely crapping out and giving me the "limited access" message.
Doing a google search for Acer Aspire A5 wifi showed me a TON of users who were having the same issues and there wasn't a fix available.
on August 9, 2013
I have had this laptop for almost a year.
- Fast boot up/restart
- Fast performance
- Can play mid-high end settings on games (Can play Skyrim on high and Dead Island on medium-high)
- Backlit keyboard in awesome
- Windows 8 is great
- Sound; the sound on this is wonderful, loud and sharp. You CAN turn the Dolby Advanced Audio on and off, though (which I did not realize at first) and I had somehow turned it off and was frustrated and confused when the sound started to be muffled and quiet. A quick check of the icon tray will tell you whether it is on or off though.
Screen; bright, clear, crisp.
- Touchscreen; I'll be honest, I barely use it and if I could go back, I would have bought a regular laptop. It's cool, but I prefer it on a tablet.
- The wifi issue; this was simply a matter of Windows 8 being released before all of the kinks were worked out and the wifi card was not compatible with windows 8. This caused an irritatingly unstable wifi connection for the first few months, but they released an update to the atheros driver that fixed the problem around February. They probably should have sold the laptop with Win 7 and a free upgrade once they were sure the drivers were up to date and compatible, but I digress.
- Trackpad; meh. It's not that it's BAD, but it can be annoying to use. There is no clear line between left click and right click so it could take you a couple of clicks to get the side you want. I have only had one real issue with the trackpad once and that was that it had choppy movement and lagged, but this only lasted maybe half an hour and then it went back to normal. I have no idea what caused the issue or what resolved it.
- Screen; although clear and bright (pro!) it DOES collect a ton of fingerprints, but it's really no big deal.
- Hot; this computer will get super hot when running games. The fan is small and inconveniently placed, plus there is only one of them so it does not cool well. It has gotten up to 180-190 during gaming and you CANNOT leave it on your lap while doing so. The temp does drop quickly once the game is off though. It stays around 125 normally.
- Battery; maybe for the first month or two tho battery ran the promised 6 or so hours, but now I'm lucky if I can get it to run 3-4. Also, the battery is built into the body of the laptop. If I knew this before I bought it, I would never have purchased this machine. To get to the battery, I would actually have to take the computer apart which is absolutely ridiculous, and even then I'm unsure whether the battery is actually removable or not, or if the took the apple route and will force you to buy a new computer instead of just the battery. So frustrating.
- Freezing; This is probably the most frustrating issue. My laptop freezes at least a few times a week if not at least once a day. I thought it was linked to heat, but it isn't. It almost always freezes after being brought out of sleep after being asleep for several hours. It is so frustrating, because then I have to do a soft restart. I have yet to figure out why it is freezing.
- Drivers; Keeping them up to date is very important. Unfortunately, almost all of the drivers at purchase date were labeled Very Old-Ancient on Driver Reviver. And Acer doesn't have a neat, nifty, little driver downloads section on their website and it is so difficult to find the right updates, so I just bought DR to do it for me. Go ahead; spend the $40. It will help in the long run.
- Weight; I guess it is a good sized computer but I still expected it to be lighter.
- Screen angle; Since it IS a touch screen I would have preferred that the screen could lay straight back and the physical keyboard disabled, so it could be used more like a tablet when required.
- Speaker Location - For some reason they put the speakers right on the front of the computer, and since I tend to have my laptop...in my lap...most of the time, it muffles the sound. Poor design.
Would I suggest this laptop to a friend? No. Too hot, touch screen unnecessary and overrated (unless it is a convertible), and just not living up to the expectations. If someone offered me $800, I'd sell this thing in a heartbeat and grab a Lenovo convertible that I had my eye on last year but didn't have the patience to wait for.
on February 10, 2013
I have to echo a previous review which starts by saying: "Hardware wise, it's excellent and you're getting a lot of bang for your buck. Unfortunately, this laptop was plagued with wifi problems for the whole time I owned it. It would not maintain a wifi connection for more than 20 minutes before completely crapping out and giving me the "limited access" message." ...
Unfortunately, fresh out of the box I am having the same WIFI problem. A forum mentioned a new driver coming out to fix this, but when I tried to update the driver, it said you already have the latest version. So I would say stay away from this product unless you can live with using a hard wire Ethernet connection.
on November 2, 2012
get this Acer Aspire V5-571P for my kid(in university). the windows 8 is fun to play with touchscreen. the same cost you may select between i5 CPU with touchscreen or i7 CPU with old standard screen. I think you can not feel much of the speed different between i5 and i7. but you and your friend will know the different right away when you play on the touchscreen. By the way, the win8 pre-loaded a VPN, you cannot use school download win7 VPN, but you can config the WIN8 pre-load VPN for your school or company network. My kid said WIN8 (with touchscreen) work for ALL the university APPS as well as MS office 2010.
on January 7, 2013
Overall it's a good buy if you are in a budget.
I would have given more stars but the computer feels cheap and they saved money where they shouldn't. For example, they should have chosen a 7200RPM hard drive instead, the difference in cost is about $10 and the performance would be far greater.
The battery is also a minus... I was expecting as technology progresses, a better battery. The camera behaves as the worst camera in the market, very low quality and provides low resolution images. Also it does not work well under low light conditions.
I'm aware that this laptop is not a premium one but a few more details would have made this product a home run and not just another one on the market.
***Review Update**** 01/29/13
Now the laptop's WiFi stops working randomly. Unfortunately, Amazon can't help much and the only way of getting it fixed is sending my brand new laptop over mail to Acer's service center in Texas. I will have to pay for the shipping on top of staying without a computer for who knows how much time. Also if they give me another laptop, I will have to migrate all of my data and re-install all of my software. That's going to cost me more than the laptop itself. I should have spent a little more on a Lenovo. I regret so much buying this laptop.
on December 6, 2012
What you DO get that you might feel you didn't pay for: large screen, surprisingly beautiful display, given the serviceable screen resolution, videos are really incredibly film like. You get the potential of working with online wordprocessing and other work function programs and keeping the documents online in Acer's or other cloud services so they are accessible from other computers and tablets.
You get serviceable sound, better with ear buds. Sets itself up and connects to existing wireless network easily. Large disk capacity (750GB). Comes with HDMI connector for a second monitor or TV. Also a "Y" dongle to use the USB port as an ethernet port for wired internet connection or other networking. (haven't identified use for the other connector (VGA) on the dongle yet.) Really large touchpad is surprisingly easy to avoid as you type (a perennial problem for me with other laptops) Another reviewer remarked that the touchpad is off to the left. That is because it is centered on the alphanumeric keypad pad, which is left of the dedicated numeric pad. Yes, a full numeric keypad, too.
What you DON'T get that you didn't pay for: You don't get a lightweight laptop with a reasonable battery life that makes it a work weapon when traveling. Nor do you get any basic Microsoft work tools. You don't get the fastest intel processor (but unless you are editing video you probably won't miss it). Acer website indicates that the configuration I bought (8GB RAM, 750gb HD) is max - You don't get more hardware upgrade flexibility. You don't get fantastic mind boggling sound. or the perceived depth of picture that a good desktop monitor has, screen color a bit washed out, background not as focused in videos. Battery life a bit short. 3hrs 46 mins this AM playing videos and searching the internet, with periods of inactivity. Case is plastic, acceptably attractive.
What it came with that requires courtship to love: Windows 8 - overall is a learning curve. Tiled start screen is full of bloatware and an obstacle to setting up to work, but interesting to wander through. Advantage of touch screen function in Windows 8 is not obvious for my uses (internet research, creation of reference file systems, document creation and keeping, personal financial record keeping, FB, photos, music, online video watching, very little gameplay). Use of Windows 8 is demanding - a lot of internet searching to figure out how to do basic functions, execution of some functions more convoluted than in previous Windows iterations.
However, at a terrific price, you get a portable workstation, entertainment and social media tool that has the capability of being your only work/play 'puter. I would buy it again as a gift for someone I loved a lot (if I had a bit more money).
on December 3, 2012
If you want to adopt Win 8, and do it now, this machine is an excellent choice. Forgive the spec repetition, but here's why:
o touch screen and a real, backlit keyboard;
o good performance from the i5-3317u (overall MS performance rating 5.6);
o 750 GB disk drive (much more useful than 500 GB);
o 8 GB RAM;
o 3 USB ports (a big benefit), one of which is USB-3;
o HDMI out (the really useful monitor connection);
o a dongle for gb ethernet and VHS monitor (would rather no dongle & just the ethernet port).
Not for gamers, I suppose, and the touchscreen is not 1080p, but the computer can support that resolution in an add-on monitor, The touchscreen is responsive, but you also have a touchpad that may limit how often you avail yourself of it. In any event, it is great for scrolling.
One aside: Google's Chrome browser, its apps, and the flexibility with which those apps can be invoked are pretty useful with Win 8, whose apps (save Office) have not yet caught up. Chrome has the peculiar property, at your option, of working in Win-8 mode or traditional mode. (I prefer traditional mode, but you may prefer Win-8)
Overall, despite its peculiarities, I like Win 8, and I think this Acer box is a fine vehicle for running it.
on January 17, 2013
+Touchscreen is fast and responsive
+Nice size and slender
+Back lit keyboard
-keys on keyboard sometimes do not sit correctly (not a deal breaker because they do work...just looks odd)
-No caps lock or num lock indicators
-bottom doesn't sit flat on a table surface. I have tested both this and my old laptop, so I know it's not the table that is out of level! Again, not a deal breaker, but slightly annoying.
+/- Windows 8: It's cool, but is not what you are used to...some great stuff and some things that should be there that aren't. I won't review windows 8 any further.
on November 1, 2012
This is my first Touch screen laptop and it is a blast to play with. Very responsive and easy to use.