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[Review] Acer Nitro 5 AN515-55-59KS: Pulling Out All the Stops!

Acer Nitro 5 AN515-55-59KS: review

Pros
  • Full HD IPS Display with 144 Hz refresh rate
  • Red backlit keyboard
  • NVIDIA GeForce GTX Ti 1650
  • USB-C + Wi-Fi 6
Cons
  • It does not have an SD card slot
  • 256GB storage
Professional-level gaming on laptops requires cutting-edge hardware components, especially if you are looking to enjoy the most popular video games on the market with sufficient fluidity and in high definition.

It's with this in mind that today we set out to know everything there is to know about the Acer Nitro 5 AN515-55-59KS. An affordable gaming laptop that's managed to climb onto the list of best-selling laptops thanks to its competitive price point, stellar reviews, and overall great specs. Want to know everything there is to know about this laptop? Just keep on reading this review while we analyze it with a fine-tooth comb.



Index


Acer Nitro 5 AN515-55-59KS Technical Specifications


Make modelAcer Nitro 5 AN515-55-59KS
Dimensions36.32 x 25.4 x 2.38 cm
Weight5.07 pounds
PanelLCD | IPS | 15.6 inches | 144 Hz
ResolutionFull HD (1920 x 1080 pixels)
ProcessorIntel Core i5-10300H (4 cores up to 4.50 GHz)
RAM8GB (DDR4)
Graphic ControllerNVIDIA GeForce GTX 1650 Ti (4GB)
Storage256 GB (SSD)
Drums4 cells (Li-Po)
Operating systemWindows 10 Home
ConnectivityWi-Fi 6 
Bluetooth 5.0 
RJ-45 
USB-A (x3) 
USB-C 
HDMI 2.0 
Audio combo connector 
HD webcam 
Digital microphone


Who's it for?

This laptop is suited for just about every user in the market. That's the thing about gaming laptops, they feature the best specs and therefore can handle just about anything you throw at it. That said, these types of laptops do have their limitations when compared to more traditional laptops: mainly the weight and battery life.

Obviously, this laptop is not the lightest (weighing slightly above 5 pounds) and therefore was not conceived as a portable device meant to be taken with you everywhere you go. 

With that in mind, if you're not a graphic designer nor a gamer and you don't really need a full-blown gaming laptop you might want to consider something lighter - and more discreet - such as the recently reviewed HP Pavilion 15-eg0021nr, a laptop that's perfect for everyone except gamers and graphic designers. 

Or, if you're looking to spend a little less then you might want to consider the HP 15-dy2021nr, a nice, slim, powerful, and greatly revered laptop that features very similar overall specs, sans the dedicated graphics. 


Design

Acer Nitro 5 AN515-55-59KS: gaming laptop with NVIDIA graphics, 144 Hz display and Wi-Fi 6
Manufactured with a solid chassis this laptop's design does little to hide its main purpose in life: Gaming. With a nice quality build that feels professional to the touch. This model is relatively light when compared to some of its competitors. Weighing in at 5.07 pounds. Surely it's not as portable as we'd like but that's often the case when looking at gaming laptops. 

As is expected, Acer incorporated onto this model its singular cooling system; the Acer Cool Boost which also allows you to manually control the fans and look at the temperature that your key components are reaching. It also features four different exhaust ports, which means you don't have to worry too much about blocking the pathways of the air. 

Keyboard and Trackpad

One of its great strengths is found in its QWERTY keyboard, as it has a red backlight and keys large enough to play fluently, without any missed-presses and with a very nice sensation. 

A good keyboard that delivers solid feedback is essential to an optimal gaming experience. That's why we're also happy to report the inclusion of the NitroSense key as well as a key travel distance of 1.6 mm for a more ergonomic typing experience. 

There's also an ample trackpad located right below the keyboard. This is good enough for most usages but we would definitely recommend getting a gaming mouse if that is going to be the primary use of this laptop. It's one of those things that can truly make all the difference to your gaming sessions. 

Display

The Acer Nitro 5 AN515-55-59KS implements an LCD-type screen, equipped with an anti-reflective surface and In-plane Switching (IPS) technology to favor viewing from angles as wide as 178º.

What's more, the display at hand features a 144 Hz refresh rate. This means that the image is refreshed roughly 150% more times than your standard display with a 60 Hz refresh rate. This is very important while gaming as it allows you to see everything in full detail without the game delivering a blurry image product of having a lower refresh rate.

Obviously, the resolution of the display is Full HD (1080p), which is good enough for most users. However, if you're looking to game on a higher definition you can always connect your laptop to an external monitor. 

Under the hood, the Acer Nitro 5 AN515-55-59KS features some really cutting-edge hardware. Powering everything we've got the 10th generation Intel chipset: the Intel core i5-10300H. This is a quad-core processor that clocks in at a maximum speed of 4.5 GHz and packs 8 virtual cores to handle really CPU-intensive tasks as well as 8 MB of caché.

Memory-wise, we've got 8 GB of RAM, whose DDR4 architecture favors energy savings while allowing multiple applications to be run simultaneously to gain productivity.

When it comes to storage capacity, we've got a single SSD storage unit (256 GB) that, in practice, will be in charge of turning on the laptop and opening your programs and games more quickly, as well as rendering your editing projects and transferring heavy data in less time than usual

Ultimately, it's way better for speed and overall performance to have a gaming laptop feature solely SSD storage instead of the hybrid storage options we used to see a lot of a few years back.

It's important to point out that this combination of CPU, GPU, and RAM means that you shouldn't expect newer AAA games to deliver the smoothest experience at the highest settings, being limited to a 1080p resolution in most cases.

 If you're a truly hardcore gamer and you want to play the latest releases with the best possible settings then you should really consider something like the Acer Helios 300 PH315-53-73XD

This particular model doubles the RAM, the storage and upgrades the CPU to an i7 as well as a better RTX 2060 GPU. It's also a bit more expensive so we would only encourage truly demanding gamers to go for this model. If you're an average gamer and don't care all that much and would rather spend less then the Nitro 5 is the way to go. 

Can the RAM / Storage of the Acer Nitro 5 AN515-55-59KS be increased?

Yes! You can upgrade the RAM on the AN515-55-59KS. Specifically, this model supports up to 32 GB of RAM. Our professional opinion for gamers and high-end multitaskers would be to upgrade the RAM to at least 16 GB by adding an additional 8 GB module on one of the two available slots

This would greatly improve overall performance both on gaming as well as in everything else you're working with. 

Storage-wise, this laptop features 2 M.2 SSD slots, of which one is occupied. The other one is available for you to include another SSD unit, specifically, you would need a 2.5-inch standard SSD unit. 

The AN515-55-59KS boasts an NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1650 Ti graphics card with 4 GB dedicated memory that, in effect, not only allows you to work with professional grade editing and design applications fluently, but also to play recent video games - duh, it's a gaming laptop -.

Specifically, said graphics can move the highly anticipated Hitman 3, in Full HD resolution at a rate of 64.1 fps, in addition to other notable titles such as Dirt 5 (52.6 fps), Watch Dogs Legion (57 fps), and FIFA 21 in 4K under a very generous 83.7 fps.

This is also a great graphics card if you're looking to work with Photoshop or get into professional grade video editing.

Ports and Connectivity

As expected we've got the latest Wi-Fi 6 standard to guarantee fast internet browsing, and Bluetooth 5.0 support to simplify the connection of wireless gaming peripherals (mice, helmets, gamepads, etc.)

It also incorporates a reversible USB-C input with a transfer rate of up to 10 Gbps, an HDMI output for external monitors, a 3.5 mm audio jack, and an RJ-45 network port in case you wanted to get the fastest possible internet connection and the WiFi network wasn't cutting it for you.

In addition, you have 3 USB-A inputs, an HD webcam with a digital microphone for video calls, and a pair of stereo speakers of decent quality. Having said that, while the speakers are fine, you need to remember that while gaming intensely your fans are going to be working at full throttle so you might want to consider getting a gaming headset to offset that.

Battery Life

Battery life on the AN515-55-59KS is nothing to write home about, as many customers have already pointed out. Specifically, while Acer claims a 9-hour battery life, real life usage - depending on your habits - tends to orbit closer to 5 and 6 hours.

 Having said that, with most gaming laptops rarely going past the 3-hour mark we've gotta say that Acer has really delivered on this front. On that regard, while this laptop is hardly very portable and compact, it's decent battery life does mean you CAN take it out of the house without the power adapter. You might not do so because of the sheer weight but it's definitely refreshing to know that it's possible.

Verdict: Is it worth buying?

In short, the Acer Nitro 5 AN515-55-59KS reviewed today could very well be the best option for you. Specifically, this laptop is for you if you are looking for a comprehensive computing solution that allows you to play your favorite games and work on your most demanding projects, without any performance restrictions.

Its ergonomic backlit keyboard offers you the possibility to work in several enviroments, its 144 Hz FHD screen immerses you in the most frenetic action sequences and its SSD storage along with its powerful 10th gen i5 processor allows you to work at lightning-fast speeds.

Ultimately, a laptop that's ready to take on even the most demanding of programs and one that's future proof due to the possibility of upgrading both in terms of RAM and storage.