The Good High-end features, including HD DVD drive, HDMI-out, S/PDIF, and Dolby Home Theater sound; handy media controls; decent speakers; lengthy battery life; comfortable keyboard; easy-to-use system management software.
The Bad Heavy; native resolution not as high as we'd like; display wobbles easily; glossy screen finish results in distracting reflections; lacks a fingerprint reader.
The Bottom Line Though it's bulky, the Acer Aspire 5920 makes a great choice for buyers who want both a media-friendly laptop and a portable HD DVD player that plugs into their home theater.
Acer Aspire 5920
When we reviewed the Blu-ray-equipped Sony VAIO FZ180 a few months ago, we wondered how big the market for 15.4-inch, high-def laptop could really be. Apparently, the market is big enough to warrant an entry from the other side of the fence: the Acer Aspire 5920 incorporates an HD DVD drive into its bulky midsize case. Differing HD formats aside, the two systems are remarkably similar. Both include HDMI support for easy integration to home theaters. Both incorporate Intel Core 2 Duo T7300 processors on the latest Centrino Duo platform. And both cost $1,999. The Sony offers the advantage of a sleeker design and lighter weight, while the Acer offers the advantage of a few extra features (S/PDIF audio, full Dolby Surround, Bluetooth connectivity) and a longer battery life. For the most part, though, the choice between these very similar systems will depend on your format preference. Appreciated on its own merits, the Acer Aspire 5920 makes a decent choice for buyers who want both a media-friendly laptop and a portable HD DVD player that they can connect to their home theater for big-screen viewing.
The Aspire 5920 features Acer's new Gemstone design, which includes a glossy black lid, a light-gray interior, and blue LEDs on the media controls. The case's rounded corners and beveled edges give the laptop a soft look that's somewhat like the design found on the HP Pavilion dv6500t. Despite its soft looks, the Aspire 5920 feels pretty solid, though the screen did wobble a bit on its hinges when we accidentally bumped our desk. Screen wobbles aside, the laptop seems likely to withstand a few hard knocks; however, with a 7-pound weight that nearly qualifies it for the desktop replacement category, the laptop isn't likely to encounter anything more treacherous than your living room and the occasional stint in a laptop bag.
Windows Mixed Reality headset prices cut in half on Amazon
If $200 is your sweet spot for a VR headset and controllers, now's your chance.
Laptop team-ups power new PCs at CES 2018
Whether it was Intel and AMD, laptop bodies and smartphone brains, or Alexa and everyone, the story of new computers at CES was a tale of team-ups.
GeForce Now, aka 'a dirt-cheap $200 laptop can now play games'
PUBG, Rainbow Six: Siege and more -- these laptops couldn't possibly run these games. Until they could.
Get an Acer Swift 3 ultraportable for $419.99
Slim, sexy and packed with features, the Swift 3 has never been cheaper. Plus: three bonus deals, including a $10 Bluetooth speaker!
CES 2018 PC preview: What to expect from laptops, desktops and tablets
From hybrid designs to hybrid components, everyone is taking an expansive view of what makes a PC.
25 best battery life laptops for 2017
If you're shopping for a holiday laptop or hybrid, these are the models that offer the longest battery life.
Microsoft Black Friday deals: Save on Xbox, Surface and laptops
Microsoft hardware comes with steep discounts this Black Friday. Get a $190 Xbox One S, save up to $330 on a Surface bundle, or choose from other sweet laptop deals at the Microsoft Store.
AMD Ryzen processors want to power your next skinny laptop
AMD's Ryzen 5 and 7 mobile chips, based on its Zen processing and Vega GPU cores, will arrive first in ultrathin models from HP, Lenovo and Acer.
Intel CPU names: Solving a mystery for the ages
Figure out exactly what you can expect out of that Core processor -- and whether it’s worth the money.
Microsoft Surface Book 2 is bigger and better
A new 15-inch size, updated Intel CPUs and gamer-ready Nvidia graphics hit Microsoft's pro-level Surface two-in-one.
Satya Nadella talks up mixed reality for IT
At the Microsoft Ignite tech conference, CEO Satya Nadella shows off mixed reality's benefits for collaboration and security.
Microsoft Ignite 2017: Everything that was just announced
The company's big IT conference in Orlando is brimming with news about enterprise-level products.