Sunday, October 3, 2010

New Acer Aspire TimelineX Laptops

Acer is launching a series of new notebooks in their Aspire TimelineX range boasting mobile form factors, Intel Arrandale processors, and up to 8 hours of battery life. These new models come in a variety of sizes, starting with an ultra low voltage 11.6" model. 13.3", 14" and 15.6" models with full voltage processors are also available.

All models feature Acer's CineCrystal 16:9 LED-backlit displays with a 1366x768 resolution, a claimed 8 hours of battery life, and Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit. Connectivity wise, all models have an HDMI port, VGA port, up to four USB 2.0 ports, Gigabit Ethernet, and WiFi 802.11b/g/n. They all feature 1.3MP webcams with integrated microphones, a multi-format card reader and trackpads with gesture support.

The most interesting model is the Acer Aspire 1830T, which features an 11.6" display and Intel's recently announced ultra low voltage Core i7-680UM running at 1.46GHz, but turbo boosting itself to a nippy 2.53GHz. Like all the mobile dual-core parts, it also includes Hyper-Threading and integrated graphics with a TDP of 18W.

The 1830T weighs in at 3.09lbs with an 11.22" x 8.03" x 1.10" footprint and features a "full size" keyboard. Included in the compact chassis is 4GB DDR3 SDRAM, a 500GB HDD and integrated Bluetooth, but there's no space for an optical drive. Unfortunately, all this doesn't come cheaply, with this specification carrying a suggested retail price of $900. Fortunately, cheaper configurations with ultra low voltage Intel Core i3 or i5 processors start at a more reasonable $600.

Acer has also updated the rest of the TimelineX range. The 3820T features a 13.3" display and Intel Core i3 or i5 processors in a chassis weighing in at 3.97lbs. It comes with 3GB or 4GB DDR3 SDRAM (upgradeable to 8GB) and up to 320GB HDD storage.

Acer's larger models feature a more complete computing experience with integrated DVD drives, Intel Core i3 or i5 processors, up to 4GB DDR3 SDRAM (upgradeable to 8GB) and up to 500GB HDD storage. The TimelineX 4820T packs these features into a 4.65lbs chassis with a 14" display, while the TimelineX 5820T has identical features but in a 5.5lbs chassis with a 15.6" display and an integrated numeric pad. Both start at $700.

Acer is also offering additional models based on the 14" 4820T called 4820TG, with the "G" presumably standing for Graphics, as they pair an AMD Mobility Radeon HD5650 GPU with an Intel Core i5-460M for those looking to do some gaming on the move. These models will allow users to switch back to the integrated GPU to save on battery life when required, and will start at $800. While the 11.6" ultra low voltage Core i7 model grabs the interest, the capable midrange models with DirectX 11 support will probably be most relevant to consumers and seem to offer a decent level of performance without any major sacrifices.

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