the Acer ConceptD 5 (2021) with 11th gen Intel processor and RTX 3000 GPU is a premier laptop for “Creative” professionals. This burgeoning category has seen a lot of dynamism over the past two years, reflecting a growing demand for powerful mobile computers to handle professional graphics tasks.
Gaming laptops or workstations partially addressed this category in the past. However, neither was perfect for the new generation of creative pros and influencers.
The component price of gaming laptops can be optimized by using a low RAM (16GB) configuration or slower hard drive without affecting the gaming experience as much. Also, display quality is often poor. not high enough for professional graphics work.
Workstations have the right hardware and displays, but come with features and company guarantees that can be overkill (and too expensive) for freelancers or small businesses.
The industry response is laptops such as the Acer ConceptD 5, which is graphically as powerful as gaming rigs (of a similar size), but with faster storage, higher maximum RAM, better screens and a user-friendly design for the business.
The particular unit we’re looking at is the Acer ConceptD 5 (SKU CN516-72G-787Y) with the Intel Core processor i7-11800H, 16 GB 3200Mhz DDR RAM, and NVIDIA RTX3060 6 GB.
There is 1TB of storage in the form of a Samsung MZVL21T0HCLR-00B7, which is a OEM version of the popular Samsung 980 Pro SSD. At the time of publication, the laptop was selling for $ 1,999.99.
Note that it is possible to add up to 64 GB of RAM and 2 TB of storage in a RAID0 configuration. We have seen how much more performance RAID0 can add when Acer Triton 500 SE review.
The ConceptD 5’s chassis is mostly metal, with the exception of the monitor frames, where the various radio antennas are located.
The metal surface has a Micro-Arc Oxidation (MAO) finish which seems extremely difficult to scratch as it is a thin layer of ceramic-like material. It does grab fingerprints a bit, but overall it’s a practical finish that feels more durable than regular aluminum.
The Acer ConceptD 5 looks very “professional” and I’ve received a ton of industry insider comments that Creative users want to look “serious” in front of a corporate client who doesn’t. You may not like the aesthetics of the “gaming laptop”.
The chassis is thin and light for a 16-inch laptop. The thickness is 19.8mm and weighs 5.28 Lbs, which means this computer is a very efficient mobile Creative Workstation if you need to work on the go, as many influencers and professionals do these days.
Keyboard and touchpad
The full-size keyboard has large, comfortable, non-slip keys. The key stroke appears to be 1mm or slightly less, and the amber backlighting looks gorgeous and lights up as soon as you press a key.
This immediate backlight trigger is a really nice touch as today’s laptops often require you to specifically turn on the backlight, only to turn it off a minute later if you’re not actively typing, which is quite annoying if you are. read or watch a video. Thanks Acer.
The Trackpad is very large and comfortable, even if you perform complex Windows gestures. The surface of Gorilla Glass is tough and extremely smooth – a must have for creative users as they can work for hours without getting their fingertips irritated by a coarser texture.
The ports are numerous and the presence of two USB-C Thunderbolt 4 will ensure that you can use this laptop as a stationary computer with external storage and possibly via a high performance Thunderbolt docking station.
Thunderbolt 4 does not provide faster peak bandwidth, but it does Following 4K attach to be connected simultaneously as Thunderbolt 3, a potential for productivity gains for professionals.
Legacy full-size USB ports use the USB 3.2 Gen2 protocol, which is the best you can do with these ports, and you’ll find HDMI 2.1, Gb RJ45 Ethernet, and Kensington anti-theft ports as desktop-ready connectors.
You can charge the laptop through any of the USB-C ports in a snap, but the included 135W power supply is required to use the computer at full speed.
This laptop has a stereo speaker setup with two bottom trigger speakers. As a result, the sound quality of the speakers is okay, but the four-speaker, up-triggered designs will project more powerful and better sound.
I recommend enabling the built-in DTS: X Ultra surround sound option to improve spatialization a bit. Still, I guess people will use high quality headphones or an external speaker system for professional work.
The Concept D5’s display is a well-balanced choice because it has a 3K resolution and high color accuracy, validated by Pantone.
Acer’s 3K choice enables high display performance for creative professionals without a huge impact on battery life and price, like a 4K display would. 4K displays are a huge drain on battery power, and opting for a 3K display could comparatively improve battery life by around 25%.
“HIGH DISPLAY PERFORMANCE FOR CREATIVE PROFESSIONALS WITHOUT A MASSIVE BLOW TO THE BATTERY”
Display 400 NIT brightness isn’t the highest, but I find it appropriate for most business uses, unless you’re editing videos in a cafe on a sunny afternoon. While it can happen, it’s fair to say that creative professionals tend to work in a dimly lit area, with as little glare as possible, so 400 NIT should be sufficient, although more brightness never has. hurts no one.
If you are tempted to use the GeForce RTX 3060 for playing games, it may be worth noting that this is a 60 Hz display, you will therefore have to forgo vertical synchronization to achieve higher effective frame rates. Gamers are more likely to go for an Acer Predator Triton 300 SE Where 500 SE, that we previously looked at.
The creative performance of the Acer ConceptD 5 slightly exceeds our expectations. Going into this review, I thought it would rival the Acer Predator Triton 300 SE, but it’s significantly better.
And it makes sense: As a laptop for graphic design professionals, the ConceptD 5 has better components, such as the Much faster SSD, which makes a big difference in creative benchmarks.
the GeForce RTX 3060 GPU might look identical to the Predator Triton 300 SE on the surface, but the ConceptD 5 GPU can draw up to 105W instead of 75W in the 300 SE. The power differential explains why the ConceptD 5 scores higher in the gaming / GPU benchmarks.
In absolute terms, this laptop offers excellent mobility performance if you look at graphics performance “for the weight”. If you want to push things even higher, you should look at the GeForce RTX 3080 in the form of the Acer ConceptD 7, but that might be for another test. The Predator Triton 500SE is a good indicator of the kind of extraordinary performance / lbs ratio you would get with the 3080 or 3080 Ti.
Acer’s thermal solution on this laptop is really good, and heat dissipation was not an issue during benchmarking. Of course, all laptops will be limited by power or thermal throttling at some point, but I feel like this cooling solution is one of the best I’ve reviewed.
“GLOBAL, THE CONCEPTD 5 HAS EXCELLENT PERFORMANCE FOR THE PRICE”
When looking at performance “for the price”, the ConceptD 5 is slightly superior to a gaming laptop such as the Predator Triton 300 SE. However, it has a more precise display, more RAM expansion, and a user-friendly look. Overall, the ConceptD 5 has excellent performance for the price.
the SSD performance is exceptional, even compared to a workstation like the ThinkPad P15 Gen2. Note that we did not have a RAID0 configuration in our test unit. The drive performance of the Predator Triton 500 SE with RAID0 indicates the type of I / O performance you should get if you opt for the 2TB RAID0 option.
We were impressed with the battery life of the Acer ConceptD 5 as it lasted over 9.1 hours of productivity testing in the office*.
Great 100Wh battery The capacity combined with the energy efficiency of the i7-11800H + RTX 3060 combo is the reason. This is the kind of capability found in the Triton 500 SE combined with the higher fuel efficiency of the Triton 300 SE. The best in the world and a great balance for a Creative laptop.
Typically, these powerful laptops have noticeably shorter battery life. I would expect most people to use this computer when it’s plugged in, but it’s nice to know that the battery life is extended for low power tasks.
* using ‘best battery’ settings and 110 NIT display brightness.
The battery charging speed is ordinary and you may find better performance in this area. The ThinkPad P15 Gen2 charges almost 2x faster for a comparable battery size.
The Acer ConceptD 5 laptop (with i7-11800H + RTX 3060) is a great Creative laptop. It features a user-friendly industrial design, game-like graphics performance and excellent display accuracy.
You might find lighter workstations with similar specs, but the ConceptD 5’s high powered GPU and overall price / performance ratio make it a very compelling candidate for creative professionals. Longer battery life can be a factor for those who need to work on the go.
“A GREAT CREATIVE COMPUTER”
If you’re a busy professional who wants to be able to work ‘on the go’ but also have a powerful Creative laptop at home, the ConceptD 5 can do both, thanks to its peak performance and large battery capacity.
64GB of RAM and the SSD RAID0 option might set it apart from gaming laptops in the same price range, as none of these are crucial for gamers. A specially designed computer increases the value proposition of the end product.