Acer Aspire 5942G (5942G-334G32Bn) review

With a 15.6in screen, Acer’s Aspire 5942G should weigh around 2.6kg, but it's actually a hefty 3.1kg - what we'd expect a 17in laptop to weigh. We were impressed by its battery life, though: four hours and 49 minutes, which is particularly good for a Core i3 laptop.

The built-in speakers are surprisingly good, with a rich, resonant bass, and clear mid and treble tones; even complex, busy music didn’t sound as muddy as it does on most laptop speakers. This is particularly helpful in a laptop that comes complete with a Blu-ray player and is clearly designed with home entertainment in mind. The screen isn’t exactly ideal, though – the glossy display has a resolution of just 1,366x768, so you won't see all the detail in a 1080p Blu-ray movie.

In an attempt to make the display more cinematic, Acer's 'CineBoost Colour Engine' is intended to make movies look more vibrant. In practice, it just makes everything look oversaturated. We also noticed some strobing effects in some of our static test images when it was enabled. In general, the display itself is bright and clear and we preferred to use it with CineBoost disabled.

There are three USB ports, one combined USB/eSATA port, a mini-FireWire port, VGA and HDMI outputs. You'll also find Gigabit Ethernet and three 3.5mm stereo outputs which can be used to output analogue 5.1 surround sound to a compatible HiFi system.

The keyboard's wide, flat keys and generous spacebar make typing easy, and Acer hasn’t taken up any extra space to force a numeric keypad in. To the right is a multimedia control panel that looks vaguely like something out of an ‘80s sci-fi movie.

While many of the more expensive laptops we’ve seen have focused on sheer processor power, the Aspire instead has a range of very desirable features, including the aforementioned Blu-ray drive, a dual-band 802.11n WiFi, Bluetooth and a whopping 640GB hard disk. The 5942G's overall score of 76 in our benchmark tests reflects the slower Core i3 processor (we'd expect a Core i5 at this price) but a Call of Duty 4 frame rate of 38.8fps at 1,280x768 indicates that you’ll be able to play 3D games on it.

The 5942G is clearly aimed at those after an entertainment laptop, and the high price is to some extent justified by the Blu-ray drive and large hard disk. However, a 15.6in screen with a resolution of 1,366x768 isn't quite as good as we'd want at this price - a 17in 1080p screen would have been a much better match. As it is, the 5942G feels overpriced, and won't necessarily appeal to audience Acer hopes it will.

Basic Specifications

Rating

****

Processor

Intel Core i5 520M

Processor clock speed

2.4GHz

Memory

4.00GB

Memory slots

2

Memory slots free

0

Maximum memory

4GB

Size

40x382z274mm

Weight

3.1kg

Sound

Realtek HD Audio

Pointing device

touchpad

Display

Viewable size

15.6 in

Native resolution

1,366x768

Graphics Processor

ATI Mobility Radeon HD 5650

Graphics/video ports

VGA, HDMI

Graphics Memory

1,024MB

Storage

Total storage capacity

640GB

Optical drive model

HL-DT-ST BDDVDRW CT21N

Optical drive type

DVD+/-RW +/-DL BD-ROM

Ports and Expansion

USB ports

4

Total Firewire ports

1

Bluetooth

yes

Wired network ports

1x 10/100/1000

Wireless networking support

802.11a/n

PC Card slots

none

Modem

No

Supported memory cards

SD, SDHC, Memory Stick Pro, MMC

Other ports

1x eSATA

Miscellaneous

Carrying case

No

Operating system

Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit

Operating system restore option

burn own restore disc

Software included

Microsoft Works 9, NTI Backup Now 5, NTI Media Maker 8

Optional extras

none

Buying Information

Warranty

one year RTB

Price

£914

Details

www.acer.co.uk

Supplier

http://www.saveonlaptops.co.uk

Basic Specifications

Display

Storage

Ports and Expansion

Miscellaneous

Buying Information

Author

November 24,2021

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