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I've had my Acer 8920G for 2 years now and I LOVE IT! I was recently offered the opportunity to upgrade to a macbook pro 13" and I decided against it to keep this laptop. The main features I love are the huge vibrant screen, I bought the laptop online and hadn't really thought about the size of it until it arrived and it's HUGE! I know laptops are supposed to be portable and you're thinking maybe this is too big for carrying around but personally I think it's fine, I have a nice bag for it and it doesn't feel heavy when you're carrying it, it's also just small enough to have on your lap without it being uncomfortable. The screen is amazing quality aswell, full 1080 HD screen with great colour and back lighting. The keyboard is the same size as a normal desktop computer so word processing is a dream! It also includes a full number pad which would make crunching numbers in an office easier. A lot of reviews I read about this laptop said the built in 5.1 surround sound isn't amazing but personally I think it is, the voices are clear, music is vibrant and the bass is very punchy, it's great for watching films especially blu-rays with the full HD screen and surround sound. It terms of technology inside the laptop it's great, the processor is strong and fast, the memory is large and can cope with alot of very intensive jobs and the hard drive is large enough to hold thousands of songs or pictures and hours of video. Overall I would recommend this laptop to anyone, it's never let me down, never ceases to amaze and I've never had a job to do that it can't deal with.
Before starting uni I had never owned a laptop before, as I have always stuck to using a desktop PC when at home. After buying a laptop from PC world, and then receiving the Acer Aspire 8920G as a present a few months later - well I was spoilt for choice (and pretty amazed too).
After getting it out of the box it had been sent to me in and opening up the lid, I was pretty speechless. I was greeted with an 18.4inch HD screen, a touch screen menu option on the keyboard (which includes volume control, skip, pause etc) and well... essentially a tonne of amazing features my previous laptop didn't have.
Being at uni, I am often found on Skype talking to friends and family back home. I was really impressed with the features of this laptop which made it a great experience when using videocall. The "Crystal Eye" webcam allows for perfect, HD detail from my camera and I see a noticeable difference in the quality of this built-in camera, as opposed to my previous laptop. There is also a mic built in next to the camera, which picks up sound relatively well also.
The keyboard is quite impressive, as well as the touch-screen icons I previously mentioned, there is also a separate number pad next to your standard QWERTY keyboard, as well as a number strip along the top (and then F1 options above this). I prefer this layout, as it's alot more similar to my home computer keyboard and so really does cater for all typing preferences.
I would recommend using a mouse with this keyboard, however for on the go options there is a touchpad located next to the keys, which then has a little roller underneath this for scrolling.
One of my favourite aspects of this laptop, is it's HD screen, which gives superb quality when watching DVD's or using BBC i player (this laptop also takes Blu-ray). For me, not having a separate TV with me at uni, this has been a real lifeline when it comes to catching up with my favourite programmes. I would also say that the quality on this screen is probably better than my actual TV at home. What with the "5.1 Cinematic surround sound", touch screen features on the keypad and my trusty headphones.. it makes for perfect entertainment. I realise not everybody owns beefburger style recording headphones, so I shall also inform you that these speakers are fairly impressive too. The volume options allow you to go REALLY loud if needs be, and are alot more decibel generous than my previous laptop, as the speakers were quite poor.
Performance wise, this laptop is quick, and it should be considering it is a 680GB dual HDD. I did notice my other laptop struggled to open more than 2/3 windows at a time, without it crashing. The 8920G has no such problems and can handle large data and multiple windows without it crashing or me ending up with lost work. So, if you need to work on this I would say this is a safe bet and will not let you down (although I'd always advise backing important documents up).
Perhaps one thing you should consider with this laptop if you intend to take it on the move alot, is it certainly isn't light. This is understandable considering how many features it has (and the 18.4inch widescreen), however when I returned to uni for a few days recently, I did end up taking my other laptop with me as it's far lighter, especially given the weight increase once it's in a laptop bag.
In terms of battery life, I would say it's perhaps fairly average, at about 2 hours before it needs plugging in - perhaps not ideal for taking on your travels. Having said that, when it's just in my room at uni this isn't an issue as I am always near a plug point. The actual jack for plugging the laptop in, is illuminated (as is the power button), which is helpful if you are watching a movie and suddenly the battery is low.
There are 4 USB ports on this laptop, which I find extremely useful as my previous laptop only had 2, which meant there were times when I found this limiting. There is also a headphone and mic jack, as well as other ports for an Ethernet cable and "HDMI Out", which I assume is for connecting the laptop to external devices.
Price wise, this laptop was purchased at around £1,500 but a quick price comparison check found that it now retails for around £1,000. For me normally, this would be way out of my price range but as it was a present thankfully I didn't have to stump up the cash. Having said that, if I did have that kind of money I would probably have preferred to buy a model such as the 8920G as it is of superb quality and I am confident it will last me well into my studies and beyond as I have so far received no problems with it, and it handles my demands for several windows open at a time etc, with ease.
This Aspire machine is available at about £600 to £650 which puts it in the mid range of laptop prices but you get quite a bit of technology for your money. The 8920G model was designed with multimedia in mind, the large 18.4" screen when combined with a decent 3GB of ram and builtin graphics card allow for full HD playback in 1080p. This is a nice feature to have considering the laptop supports bluray discs as well.
The battery life from the off the shelf model is reasonable but sadly Acer supply a 4800 mAh battery which is generally lower than rival multimedia laptop's (HP HDX 9203KW for example) this combined with the sheer size and weight of the machine (around 4kgs) means that its not the best for people wanting to watch movies on the move. One of the big 'selling points' Acer have tried to push is a touchpad video controller to the side of the keyboard this lets you rewind and pause etc but really isn't much more useful than learning the keyboard shortcuts for your media player application.
The TV tuner, large harddrive and hdmi output mean that this laptop would be best suited to being plugged into a home cinema system which is, I imagine, the market Acer are aiming for. The 8920 would also be equally useful in replacing a desktop pc on a full time basis for the space concious.
The graphics performance are good by generic laptop standards but I wouldn't recommend this laptop for those looking for cutting edge gaming experiences - although the built in 5.1 speakers certainly cope well with the even the most deafening war game.
Since this laptop has been out for about 12 months and has dropped pretty sharply in price, I would definitely recommend this to those on a budget who want a balance of watching movies, playing a few games and watching TV but don't want to shell out for a desktop, HDTV and games console. It's definitely not the best for those who want to commute or bring it to lectures but as a replacement of a bulky desktop and in lieu of a HDTV in a bedroom its a good choice.