What’s the most important thing in a gaming laptop? Of course, the ability to play any game you like, preferably with a lot of eye candy turned on. At a glance, Acer Aspire V15 (VN7-591G-729V) seems to be up for that task. It comes with very gamer-friendly components: i7 processor, solid-state drive and a real graphics card, Geforce GTX960M. But one thing might make you doubtful, that’s the price. It’s a very fast computer, yes, but should you pay so much for a laptop in the first place? Below, you will find my opinion about that.
Acer Aspire V15 (VN7-591G-729V) is full of modern, heavyweight performance for gaming and high-end applications. The computer’s processor is Intel Core i7-4720HQ, a quad-core model with a high 2.6Ghz clock speed that’s increased even higher, to 3.6GHz, with turbo boost. The unit enjoys one of the highest CPU Mark grades – around 8100 – and there are hardly any common processors that beat it in the benchmarks. Performance-wise, Core i7-4720HQ is a perfect choice for gaming laptop, but it might suffer from heat due to high power consumption, especially if you use the notebook on bed or on your lap (luckily, playing games often happens on a sturdy table).
The computer has 16GB DDR3L SDRAM memory installed on two 8GB sticks. You can’t add more, but that’s unlikely to become a problem. There are very few instances where all 16GB would be needed, even 8GB should be enough for the majority of gamers.
Storage solution is pretty much the best there could be: a 1024GB 5400RPM SATA hard drive and a 256GB M.2 solid-state drive. Put all your big files on the hard drive, it’s terabyte in size so you’ll hardly ever run out of space. Then put all the smaller and often accessed files to the solid-state drive and you’ll speed up loading times a lot. With this kind of HDD+SSD setup, there’s no need to replace any drives, all the essentials are already inside.
So all games run fluently?
Pretty much any game (as of mid-2015) can be played fluently or almost fluently on high settings and Full HD resolution. The GeForce GTX 960M (4GB GDDR5) is a real gaming card, making sure that lagging is unlikely to happen. Let’s take the famous triple A game, The Witcher 3, as an example. It would get 25-30FPS with high details and 1920×1080. Using similar settings, GTA V would do even better, ~50 frames per second. Battlefield 4 would reach ~35FPS with maxed out settings and Full HD.
Is there something special about the display?
Acer Aspire V15 (VN7-591G-729V) has a 15.6″ non-touch glossy display. Panel type is IPS, refresh rate is 60hz. The real magic is in the resolution: it’s not 1366×768, not even a Full HD, but 3840×2160 also known as Ultra HD. It might be useful for some games, the graphics card can run many titles with such a high resolution. However, for regular Windows use like web surfing you might want to reduce it to 1920×1080, otherwise icons and text look pretty darn small.
What devices can I plug in?
Acer Aspire V15 (VN7-591G-729V) comes with three USB ports, all are version 3.0. There’s also HDMI output allowing you to plug in HD television or PC monitor.
You can’t install games from DVDs (or CDs) because the notebook doesn’t have an optical drive. To fix this, you’d have to get external DVD drive – luckily they are cheap, costing around 30 dollars.
The Acer comes with both LAN port (1000Mbps) and a WiFi card (dual-band A/C with Bluetooth 4.0 support).
Other features you might find handy are SD card slot for uploading stuff from memory cards and a 720p front-facing webcam.
Some other things I should keep in mind?
Despite having beefy components, Acer Aspire V15 (VN7-591G-729V) doesn’t really weigh more than regular 15-inch laptops – it’s 5.29 pounds, these models often are more or less 5 pounds. The 3-cell battery won’t last long during gameplay, only 1 or 2 hours, but that’s a common problem with all gaming laptops.
Windows 8.1 64-bit is the operating system, you can upgrade it to Windows 10 for free. The OS is installed in the SSD part. Keyboard is backlit and there’s a numpad on the right hand side.
It can make sense to get a notebook like Acer Aspire V15 (VN7-591G-729V). But that is only on one condition: you like gaming, a lot. With this monster, you can play any game with (or close to) maxed out settings and not worry frame rates dropping beyond playable. You can also utilize the Ultra HD resolution with many games, although during web surfing and other non-gaming activities icons would perhaps look too small. 16GB memory is probably an overkill and put there to make the notebook look better on paper – in reality eight gigabytes would be all you need. Regardless, it’s one heck of a laptop, and with the Acer you don’t have to worry about this and that game NOT running – everything will be smooth as silk.