Acer Swift X3 review: Solid specs, including Intel’s dGPU, but build quality disappoints Review

The fourteen-inch Acer Swift 3X, announced in Oct final 12 months, was an early adopter of Intel’s 11th technology Core processors, and amongst the first with Iris Xe MAX discrete graphics. This marked the Swift 3X as a system to look out for. It has taken a whilst to get there in the Uk, but starting up at £899 (inc. VAT £749.16 ex. VAT, or $899.ninety nine in the US), does this notebook offer very good benefit for money for awareness staff and — thanks to the dGPU — creators? 

The Acer Swift 3X will come in two colour variants, Steam Blue and Safari Gold. My Steam Blue variant had a metallic sheen to its blue/gray complete, which was rather attractive. The two colour techniques have a shiny green/blue strip all the way alongside the outer edge of the hinge, with capitalised Swift branding in the center offering an eye-catching ‘designer’ contact. 

Acer’s fourteen-inch Swift 3X operates on 11th technology Intel Core i5 or i7 processors with discrete Iris Xe MAX graphics.


Photos: Acer

The ‘Swift ‘branding on the outside the house of the display hinge gives a designer contact.


Impression: Sandra Vogel / ZDNet

If you want to carry this notebook around, its one.37kg bodyweight is suitable for a fourteen-inch system. It is really a little on the thick side at seventeen.95mm, though the desktop footprint is tidy at 322.8mm huge by 212.2mm deep. When you carry the lid the hinge mechanism triggers the back again to push down and the base to increase, presenting the keyboard at a slight angle. The display hinges back again to about 135 degrees, which is a great deal for doing the job comfortably, but you won’t be able to lie the display flat on a desk. 

The develop includes a great deal of steel, but it does not feel all that strong. Pressing down even gently on the lid of my closed overview unit was adequate to drive it inwards, and I would not counsel sitting nearly anything on best of this notebook when it is not in use. I was able to flex the lid a little in my arms when the notebook was open and in use, but not to a concerning diploma. The base is reasonably organization around the wrist rest spot, and as a mild-contact typist I only skilled flex in the keyboard spot when mimicking a significant-handed typing action. 

The keyboard’s backlit keys are bouncy, with a great deal of journey, and the mild ‘thunky’ sound produced by typing is not intrusive. The double-peak Enter key butts suitable up to the hash/tilde key, which is a little odd, but did not build any accuracy issues for me. The arrow keys are pleasant and big. There is certainly a Fn key that disables the touchpad, which could be handy, though you will find no substitute for cursor regulate as the display is not contact-responsive. There is certainly a fingerprint sensor in the wrist rest and a 720p webcam over the display which lacks equally IR/Home windows Hello capacity and a security cover.   

The backlit keyboard sits at a cozy typing angle, but significant-handed typists may possibly observe some flex. 


Impression: Sandra Vogel / ZDNet

The fourteen-inch display sits in slender but not small bezels: I measured the side bezels at about 5.5mm, the best bezel at about eight.5mm and the bottom bezel at around thirteen.5mm. However, you will find a narrow black border involving the display edge and the bezels. On my overview unit this border was of equivalent sizing on remaining and suitable sides, and just a pair of pixels huge. On the best and bottom edges it was skewed so that it was (to me) visibly further on the upper suitable than the upper remaining, and further on the lessen remaining than the lessen suitable. I know that in everyday use this would irritate me drastically. 

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The non-contact IPS display is matte rather than reflective, which is welcome. Its FHD (one,920 x one,080, 16:9, 157.3ppi) resolution allowed me to perform with two files open side by side, though a further 16:ten part ratio would be even better. 

The stereo speakers produce a great deal of quantity and respectable audio excellent. There is certainly absolutely nothing superb below, but the speakers are undoubtedly very good adequate for movie phone calls and occasional after-hrs multimedia use. 

My Acer Swift 3X overview unit ran on an 11th technology Intel Core i7-1165G7 processor with 16GB of RAM and a 1TB SSD. Its checklist rate is at present £1,199 (inc. VAT £999.ninety nine ex. VAT) at Acer’s Uk on the internet store. If which is as well steep, you are going to obtain a Core i5-primarily based design on Amazon for £899, with 8GB RAM and a 512GB SSD.

Acer has carried out an intricate cooling program to cope with the 11th technology processor and its discrete Iris Xe MAX graphics, which has 4GB of focused movie RAM. There is certainly a notable grille at the best of the keyboard section, which does not look great but is there to let warmth out. There is certainly also a big grilled spot on the underside, and whilst the aforementioned base-lifting hinge presents the keyboard at a cozy angle, it also promotes airflow. 

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A Fn-F key combo cycles you by three ‘performance’ modes, which will improve the processor loading. This could be handy if you are irritated by fan sound: I only discovered the fan kicked in when I driven up, but it is quite noisy, which could irritate consumers who on a regular basis operate demanding workloads. 

Acer gives the Swift 3X with a realistic set of ports and connectors. There is certainly a person USB-C Thunderbolt 4 port, alongside with a pair of USB three.2 ports, a whole-sizing HDMI connector and a three.5mm headset jack. Fortunately, the single USB-C port is not necessary for charging, as you will find a proprietary round-pin connector for that. There is certainly a little charge indicator LED on the suitable edge, as perfectly as a person that allows you know when the notebook is switched on — helpful if you’ve just shut the lid rather than driven down. 

Acer quotations a headline battery lifetime of seventeen.5 hrs for the Swift 3X range, but fourteen hrs for my Core i7/Iris Xe MAX overview configuration. Even the latter may perhaps be a little bit optimistic beneath genuine-entire world workloads. My usual take a look at, doing the job into crafting apps whilst streaming seem and occasional movie, and with many open browser home windows, saw the 57.8Wh battery drain from whole to seventy five{446c0583c78045abf10327776a038b2df71144067b85dd55dd4a3a861892e4fa} over three hrs, providing an estimate of twelve hrs. Nevertheless, which is cozy all-working day battery lifetime for most awareness staff, and even some creators creating use of the discrete Iris Xe MAX GPU with a lot more demanding workloads. Acer suggests the battery will quick-charge to give 4 hrs of use in thirty minutes. Regrettably my overview unit came devoid of an Asus charger, so I was not able to take a look at this. 


Impression: Acer

Conclusions 

Acer’s Swift 3X is a perfectly-specified notebook with the most current Intel Core processors and discrete Iris Xe MAX graphics. The Core i7 CPU, 16GB of RAM and 1TB of SSD storage in my overview unit carried out perfectly, and even the entry-amount Core i5 design features 8GB and 512GB. We like the matte display, and though its ‘blingy’ hinge won’t charm to everyone, it does insert some pizzazz to the design and style. It would have been very good to see two USB-C Thunderbolt 4 ports, and that wonky display panel in my overview unit is a fear with any luck , it was just a glitch. 

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