Acer's high-end 18-inch Aspire AS8950G packs in Blu-ray, quad-core CPU

The 18.4-inch Aspire AS8950G has Intel's new Core i7-2630QM processor, ATI's new Mobility Radeon 6850 graphics processor, 8GB of DDR RAM, and a 750GB hard drive.

Dan Ackerman Editorial Director / Computers and Gaming
Dan Ackerman leads CNET's coverage of computers and gaming hardware. A New York native and former radio DJ, he's also a regular TV talking head and the author of "The Tetris Effect" (Hachette/PublicAffairs), a non-fiction gaming and business history book that has earned rave reviews from the New York Times, Fortune, LA Review of Books, and many other publications. "Upends the standard Silicon Valley, Steve Jobs/Mark Zuckerberg technology-creation myth... the story shines." -- The New York Times
Expertise I've been testing and reviewing computer and gaming hardware for over 20 years, covering every console launch since the Dreamcast and every MacBook...ever. Credentials
  • Author of the award-winning, NY Times-reviewed nonfiction book The Tetris Effect; Longtime consumer technology expert for CBS Mornings
Dan Ackerman
The Acer Aspire 8950G. Acer

LAS VEGAS--There's one high-end laptop hiding in Acer's CES 2011 lineup, and that's the 18.4-inch Aspire AS8950G. The system packs in Intel's new upper-tier Core i7-2630QM processor, ATI's new Mobility Radeon 6850 graphics processor, 8GB of DDR RAM, and a 750GB hard drive. A Blu-ray drive is also standard, as we'd expect in a high-end multimedia laptop these days.

The company says, "The new Acer Aspire AS8950G is the ultimate portable entertainment center," and it certainly seems well-outfitted for media consumption. The 18.4-inch display has a 1,920x1080 native resolution (exactly what we'd look for in a laptop like this), and the screen's edge-to-edge glass gives it a polished home theater look and feel. Audio isn't left out, either, and the Acer CineSurround sound system includes five built-in speakers and a dedicated subwoofer.

Interestingly, the Aspire AS8950G includes a FireWire port, something of a rarity on laptops these days. Also unusual is the dual-mode touch pad, which can act as a normal multitouch touch pad, but also switch into a media console mode, with dedicated finger gestures for media playback, including volume control.

The massive Aspire AS8950G is coming to retailers on January 9, and will start at $1,599.

Acer's CES 2011 laptop lineup

See all photos