Acer Aspire 5735 review

£470
Price when reviewed

The Aspire 5735 is one of a new breed of laptops that boast 16:9 ratio displays. With both Dell and Acer opting for this blueprint, it’s one we expect to see more manufacturers adopting in the future.

Acer Aspire 5735 review

The benefits of a 16:9 display are limited to watching movies, where less of the screen will be taken up by horizontal black bars, but that’s not to say the 1,366 x 768 pixel resolution isn’t welcome; the extra width certainly makes it easier to pop a couple of photos or documents side by side.

Quality-wise, the Acer’s display isn’t the best in the group, but it does acquit itself noticeably better than its 16:9 twin on the Dell Inspiron 1545. Colour reproduction is fairly natural, a trait that keeps skin tones looking healthy, and only a lack of contrast obscures detail in bright areas of the image.

Elsewhere, there’s little to moan about. The fact that the Aspire 5735’s slightly dull looks are its most serious transgression gives a clear impression of where the Acer’s priorities lie. It’s a solid, usable laptop, with a reasonable keyboard and a wide, responsive trackpad. And, thanks to the display’s extra width, there’s even room for a numeric keypad without cramping up the main keyboard.

And there are more reasons to be cheerful, with a decent battery life compensating for the Aspire’s 2.67kg frame. Sitting idle, Acer managed to last just short of five hours, although this dropped to only 56 minutes under intensive use.

The heavy-use battery life might not be particularly impressive, but that’s due to the Acer’s rather rapid turn of speed when the situation demands it. The processor is nothing fancy – just an Intel Core 2 Duo T5800 – but with 4GB of DDR2 memory to keep Vista Home Premium happy, it sailed to a nippy result of 0.95 in our benchmarks.

Only graphics performance disappointed: our Crysis tests climaxed with a poor five frames per second courtesy of the Intel GMA 4500MHD’s limited processing power.

But that really isn’t a showstopper at this price, and once you’ve factored in Gigabit Ethernet and draft-n networking, the Aspire 5735 looks an attractive budget portable.

Warranty

Warranty 1 yr return to base

Physical specifications

Dimensions 383 x 250 x 42mm (WDH)
Weight 2.670kg
Travelling weight 3.1kg

Processor and memory

Processor Intel Core 2 Duo T5800
Motherboard chipset Intel GM45 Express
RAM capacity 4.00GB
Memory type DDR2
SODIMM sockets free 0
SODIMM sockets total 2

Screen and video

Screen size 15.6in
Resolution screen horizontal 1,366
Resolution screen vertical 768
Resolution 1366 x 768
Graphics chipset Intel GMA 4500
Graphics card RAM 64MB
VGA (D-SUB) outputs 1
HDMI outputs 0
S-Video outputs 0
DVI-I outputs 0
DVI-D outputs 0
DisplayPort outputs 0

Drives

Capacity 250GB
Hard disk usable capacity 233GB
Spindle speed 5,400RPM
Internal disk interface SATA/300
Hard disk Hitachi HTS543225L9A300
Optical disc technology DVD writer
Optical drive Pioneer DVRTD08RS
Battery capacity 4,400mAh
Replacement battery price inc VAT £0

Networking

Wired adapter speed 1,000Mbits/sec
802.11a support yes
802.11b support yes
802.11g support yes
802.11 draft-n support yes
Integrated 3G adapter no

Other Features

Wireless hardware on/off switch yes
Wireless key-combination switch no
Modem yes
ExpressCard34 slots 0
ExpressCard54 slots 1
PC Card slots 0
USB ports (downstream) 3
PS/2 mouse port no
9-pin serial ports 0
Parallel ports 0
Optical S/PDIF audio output ports 0
Electrical S/PDIF audio ports 0
3.5mm audio jacks 2
SD card reader yes
Memory Stick reader yes
MMC (multimedia card) reader yes
Smart Media reader no
Compact Flash reader no
xD-card reader yes
Pointing device type Touchpad
Audio chipset Realtek HD Audio
Speaker location Above keyboard
Hardware volume control? yes
Integrated microphone? yes
Integrated webcam? yes
TPM no
Fingerprint reader no
Smartcard reader no
Carry case no

Battery and performance tests

Battery life, light use 4hr 55min
Battery life, heavy use 56min
Overall application benchmark score 0.95
3D performance (crysis) low settings 5fps
3D performance setting Low

Operating system and software

Operating system Windows Vista Home Premium 32-bit
OS family Windows Vista
Recovery method Recovery partition
Software supplied Microsoft Works 8.5, NTI Media Maker

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