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

Warranty1 yr return to base

Physical specifications

Dimensions383 x 250 x 42mm (WDH)
Weight2.670kg
Travelling weight3.1kg

Processor and memory

ProcessorIntel Core 2 Duo T5800
Motherboard chipsetIntel GM45 Express
RAM capacity4.00GB
Memory typeDDR2
SODIMM sockets free0
SODIMM sockets total2

Screen and video

Screen size15.6in
Resolution screen horizontal1,366
Resolution screen vertical768
Resolution1366 x 768
Graphics chipsetIntel GMA 4500
Graphics card RAM64MB
VGA (D-SUB) outputs1
HDMI outputs0
S-Video outputs0
DVI-I outputs0
DVI-D outputs0
DisplayPort outputs0

Drives

Capacity250GB
Hard disk usable capacity233GB
Spindle speed5,400RPM
Internal disk interfaceSATA/300
Hard diskHitachi HTS543225L9A300
Optical disc technologyDVD writer
Optical drivePioneer DVRTD08RS
Battery capacity4,400mAh
Replacement battery price inc VAT£0

Networking

Wired adapter speed1,000Mbits/sec
802.11a supportyes
802.11b supportyes
802.11g supportyes
802.11 draft-n supportyes
Integrated 3G adapterno

Other Features

Wireless hardware on/off switchyes
Wireless key-combination switchno
Modemyes
ExpressCard34 slots0
ExpressCard54 slots1
PC Card slots0
USB ports (downstream)3
PS/2 mouse portno
9-pin serial ports0
Parallel ports0
Optical S/PDIF audio output ports0
Electrical S/PDIF audio ports0
3.5mm audio jacks2
SD card readeryes
Memory Stick readeryes
MMC (multimedia card) readeryes
Smart Media readerno
Compact Flash readerno
xD-card readeryes
Pointing device typeTouchpad
Audio chipsetRealtek HD Audio
Speaker locationAbove keyboard
Hardware volume control?yes
Integrated microphone?yes
Integrated webcam?yes
TPMno
Fingerprint readerno
Smartcard readerno
Carry caseno

Battery and performance tests

Battery life, light use4hr 55min
Battery life, heavy use56min
Overall application benchmark score0.95
3D performance (crysis) low settings5fps
3D performance settingLow

Operating system and software

Operating systemWindows Vista Home Premium 32-bit
OS familyWindows Vista
Recovery methodRecovery partition
Software suppliedMicrosoft Works 8.5, NTI Media Maker

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