Acer Aspire E 15 (E5-576G-5762) review: A cheap laptop with all the stuff you've been missing

  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
  • 6
  • 7
  • 8
  • 9
  • 10
  • 11
  • 12
  • 13
  • 14
  • 15
  • 16

The Good The Acer Aspire E 15 (E5-576G-5762) is a wonderful mix of fresh components, simple design and handy features that have disappeared from most other laptops. Battery life and performance are great for its class.

The Bad Its size and weight are a bit much if you need a laptop you can regularly use on the go. The display is especially dim.

The Bottom Line If you've bemoaned the loss of DVD burners, HDMI outputs and Ethernet jacks or you miss being able to easily add RAM and a hard drive on your own, the Acer Aspire E 15 is what you want. Its solid performance and battery life make it an even sweeter deal.

8.3 Overall
  • Design 7
  • Features 9
  • Performance 8
  • Battery 9

Acer's Aspire E 15, specifically model E5-576G-5762, is an uncommonly good deal. It's even good by Acer's already high standards: The manufacturer has built some of our favorite budget-friendly PCs in the past, including the Aspire VX 15 gaming laptop. 

The E 15 starts at an attractive $350 for components that are good enough for absolute basics such as email, web apps and streaming video and music, though you may not get away with using them all at the same time. Step up to the $600 configuration reviewed here (which will cost you £649 or roughly AU$775) and you'll get a new eighth-gen Intel Core i5 processor and discrete Nividia GeForce MX150 graphics, something rarely found at this price. 

Regardless of the main components, though, you get the same base features across the models. That includes a good full-HD display, a bevy of ports -- new and old -- and even a DVD burner for those still working in the world of physical media. What's more, you can open it up and add more memory and storage. It's hard to say how the laptop will hold up over time, but out of the box, it's an easy recommendation for a home office or a student who can live with its weight and size. 

Acer Aspire E15 E5-576G-5762
Sarah Tew/CNET

Acer Aspire E 15 (E5-576G-5762)

Price as reviewed $600
Display size/resolution 15.6-inch 1,920 x 1,080 display
CPU 1.6GHz Intel Core i5-8250U
PC Memory 8GB DDR3 SDRAM 1,600MHz
Graphics 2GB Nvidia GeForce MX150
Storage 256GB SSD
Networking 802.11ac wireless, Bluetooth 4.2
Operating system Window 10 Home (64-bit)

But it's only $600...

This Aspire E is the epitome of "bang for your buck." As you might expect, Acer cut some corners to get the price down, but none that are necessarily deal breakers. Like most things, it all comes down to your needs. 

For example, it's not an ultraportable or even a thin-and-light laptop and it's made of textured plastic and not metal. At around an inch thick (3cm) and a little more than 5 pounds (2.4 kg), it's not unbearable to carry around, though it's also not something I would want to haul all day. The plastic makes it look and feel less sturdy than an aluminum chassis, but if it's never going to leave your home, that likely doesn't matter.

Acer Aspire E15 E5-576G-5762

The Acer's display bezels are wide by today's standards.

Sarah Tew/CNET

Instead of a 4K-resolution touchscreen, you'll find a perfectly suitable 15.6-inch full HD display. It's a good screen overall with pleasing color and way better off-angle viewing than you'll typically find at this price. It is, however, dim and while the matte finish means reflections are less an issue, you might find yourself reflexively trying to increase its brightness. Oh, and the bezels that surround the display are wide by today's standards. 

The keyboard and Windows Precision touchpad are better than expected for the money, too. Acer squeezed on a full number pad, which is nice, although I'd gladly sacrifice it for a centered keyboard with slightly larger keys. Still, it's a fine typing experience and the keys are evenly backlit. The touchpad is smooth and responsive without being jumpy. It did frequently register my two-finger scroll as a right click until I adjusted its settings, though. 

Acer Aspire E15 E5-576G-5762

The USB-C port isn't Thunderbolt 3, but at least there's a... VGA output?

Sarah Tew/CNET

Best Laptops for 2020

All best laptops

More Best Products

All best products