The Acer Aspire S3-951-6646 is one of the earliest Ultrabooks to hit the market. It offers a powerful Intel Core i5 2467M (1.60GHz) processor and comes with 4GB of system memory along with a 320 GB HDD and 20GB solid state hard drive.
While Acer’s premier Ultrabook is a powerful machine, it is the [ReviewAZON_Tooltip asin=”integrated” titlewordcount=”3″]Ultrabook [/ReviewAZON_Tooltip]components that make this particular laptop stand out the most. First is the instant on technology. Consumers are growing used to the instantaneous computing power of their tablets and smart phones – not a common feature for most computers. So, a laptop that resumes instantly when opened is incredibly useful, cutting out that interminable 5-10 minute wait whenever you take your PC on the go.
Combined with enhanced standby technology that allows the Aspire S3 to last up to 50 days on standby and provide 6 hours of continuous battery life, this Ultrabook is designed for prolonged use.
Acer Aspire S3-951-6656 Cons
While the Ultrabook movement is producing laptops that go above and beyond what most standard machines can do, they come with drawbacks. To start, Ultrabook users must get used to working without an optical drive. While most software is available via online download or USB installation these days, it is still a little frustrating when you want to install old copies of Microsoft Office or a game you have laying around.
Additionally, be prepared for limited graphical capabilities. This isn’t uncommon for a sub-$1,000 laptop, but the onboard Intel graphics chip (HD 3000) provides only limited gaming options. That said, this isn’t a gaming laptop. Lightweight and with a 13.3 inch screen, don’t expect to pull all nighters in Call of Duty with this machine.
While the official line on battery life is 6 hours, what you use the machine for will have a big impact on how long the battery actually lasts. For heavy users that multi-task or stream audio or video, expect it to last only 3-4 hours at the most.
Who the Acer Aspire Fits Best
The Acer Aspire is designed for mobility. It has a powerful processor and plenty of on-board memory, but not the kind of graphics processing you’ll need if you put your computer through a gauntlet each day.
If you need a sub-4 pound laptop that will turn on instantly and provide speedy web browsing and word processing capabilities in a Windows 7 environment, consider what the Acer Aspire has to offer. This is a powerful, well crafted machine that puts other Ultrabooks to the test.
On top of everything, the Aspire is extremely affordable, offering a price point of only $799 – well below some of the other major Ultrabooks that hit the market in early 2012. Don’t expect a powerhouse, but for frequent on-the-go users, you can’t do much better than the Aspire S3.