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Acer Aspire Timeline X 5830GT Review - Going the Xtra mile

Mahananda Bohidar | Updated on March 12, 2018 Published on August 17, 2011

CHENNAI : 11/08/2011 : Acer Aspire Timeline X. Photo : R_Ravindran.   -  THE HINDU

CHENNAI : 11/08/2011 : Acer Aspire Timeline X. Photo : R_Ravindran.   -  THE HINDU

CHENNAI : 11/08/2011 : Acer Aspire Timeline X. Photo : R_Ravindran.   -  THE HINDU

What would a high-end notebook today need to bring to your lap? A powerful processor, superior graphics and a sleek design – for those who appreciate a bit of beauty and brawn. What if someone offered you all this and a bit more?

Acer Inc. launched its Timeline X series of notebooks about three years ago promising a super-efficient and dependable work-buddy that you could count on for eight hours and more. The latest in this line is the Acer Aspire Timeline X 5830GT than promises more than the Timeline X series has, ever before!

Overview

The Acer Aspire Timeline X 5830GT is extremely sleek for a laptop its size. With a thickness of about an inch, the laptop is well-designed with its Cobalt Blue lid and a part-blue, part-aluminum keyboard. The island-style layout of the keyboard is comfortable to type on, a big advantage for those who tend to do all their work on a notebook. The plastic touchpad also has a soft, smooth feel to it. Also, the touchpad supports multi-touch gestures like ‘Pinch to zoom’, which increases the size of the icons on your desktop, as well as zooms in and out of photos and web pages.

The screen is an impressive 15.6-inch one with an LED-backlit LCD screen. With a resolution of 1,388x768, the proprietary CineCrystal display has a 16:9 widescreen ratio – the internationally accepted format for HD videos and movies. To test the screen I decided to stay in for movie night with ‘In the mood for love’ by Wong Kar Wai. However, the glossy display was a bummer and the reflective bezel too proved to be slightly distracting. With the lights switched off though, these weren’t much of an issue. The slow, melodious soundtracks of the movie were reproduced excellently by the inbuilt speakers that are endowed with Dolby Home Theater v4 technology. We could tweak the EQ settings to enhance the bass or for clearer dialogue. The audio from the speakers had excellent clarity. No surprises there, considering it’s professionally tuned and Dolby certified.

The laptop also features Acer’s proprietary Clear.fi technology that lets you set a multi-system home network connecting you laptop, PC, telly and smartphone through your internet router. You can create shared media libraries and transfer files from one system to another in two clicks. The software comes pre-installed and lets you tweak the network and sharing settings.

Performance

The 5830GT has an old-school closed optical drive on the right. The plasticky latch of the drive makes it feel a little flimsy while opening it. The body has a one-touch LED indicator on the front of the notebook that displays battery levels depending on whether the laptop is connected to a power supply and how much charge it is running on. On the top panel, next to the Dolby speakers, is the PowerSmart button. Once unplugged, you press this button to switch the laptop to a power-saver mode. After charging the laptop to a full battery, it entertained us for more than 8 hours, with the PowerSmart button on.

Despite an ultra-compact chassis, we did not have any heating issues with the laptop. A big plus considering the fact that even a lot of high-end laptops end up overheating after an hour or so of usage.

The Acer Aspire Timeline X 5830GT runs on an Intel Core i5-2410M processor with 2.3GHz and Turbo Boost Technology that lets you overclock up to 2.9GHz.

The laptop depends on Nvidia GeForce GT 520M discrete graphics chip for its graphics performance. Nvidia’s Optimus automatic switching technology (depending on the heavy or light graphics demanded by the programme used), made sure the unit remains battery-efficient. I ran a couple of benchmarking tests to test the prowess of the processor. It bagged a total of 5,018 on the test, a pretty decent score. (For comparison’s sake, the new gen Macbook Pro 13.3-inch had scored a 6,910 in our earlier tests.)

Connectivity options on the Aspire Timeline X 5830GT include three USB ports on the right side of the body. One of the three supports USB 3.0 connection that can let you transfer data up to ten times faster than the USB 2.0 port. You can also connect to an SPDF-in port which doubles up as the headphone 3.5mm jack , an HDMI to stream high definition content on your television, a VGA port and a card reader that can detect a couple of formats in the slot.

Unlike some of its predecessors, the 6-cell battery on the 5830GT doesn’t clumsily stick out of the notebook’s chassis. The 6000mAh Lithium-ion battery let us work and relax for more than 8 hours – with multimedia running and the occasional video streaming and surfing the internet. Apart from the regular charger, the laptop also features an ultra-convenient USB charger that lets you power-up your smartphone or other USB devices without having to keep the notebook switched on.

Our Verdict

The Acer Aspire Timeline X 5830GT has almost everything you can ask for in a modern day notebook – a bright 15.6-inch LED-backlit display, Dolby Digital-powered speakers and a proprietary software to watch and share multimedia. Running on an Intel Core i5 processor, I didn’t encounter a situation where the laptop froze and it didn’t show any hint of slowing down while multi-tasking, a definite plus if you want to run heavy applications or games on the system. The USB 3.0 and an HDMI make it relatively future-proof. Little niggles like that of a glossy display might not be much of a compromise given the price tag that this sleek one comes with.

Love: Great battery life, Dolby Digital sound, good processor

Hate: Reflective screen, feels plasticky in places

Rs 42,229

Published on August 17, 2011
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