9.2
Expert Rating

Unless you’re trying to find a laptop specifically for gaming, chances are you’ve considered a convertible laptop like the Acer Spin 5. With the power of a laptop and the versatility of a tablet, this computer is a favorite amongst working professionals and college students. Though it just barely falls below our top 3 picks for the best 2 in 1 laptops and the best laptop, the Acer Spin 5 is absolutely worth checking out.

Why We Like It – Acer Spin 5 Review

The Acer Spin 5 is a fantastic convertible laptop that will be especially popular with college students and business people. The unprecedented amount of ports and the included Wacom-developed active stylus both help set this apart from the competition.

Pros
  • Plethora of ports for a variety of uses
  • Includes Wacom-developed active pen that charges in minutes
  • Sturdy yet lightweight and sleek aluminum chassis
Cons
  • Subpar battery life compared to competition
  • 3:2 aspect ratio isn’t great for watching movies or TV
  • Mediocre heat management

Power/Performance

Despite its compact and lightweight body, the Acer Spin 5 packs in an impressive amount of power. The 10th gen Intel Core i5 processor runs a variety of programs with ease, and they will all look fabulous thanks to the new Intel Iris Plus graphics card. One thing that really makes this convertible laptop stand out from competitors like the HP Spectre X360 is the 3:2 aspect ratio. This is both a positive and a negative about this device: the size is more akin to an A4 piece of paper, which makes it excellent for notes, and the wider screen makes it easy to conduct research with less page scrolling. However, this means any 16:9 content you want to watch will have fairly large letterboxing to compensate, meaning videos look even smaller on an already small screen.

Battery

Reviews regarding the battery life of the Acer Spin 5 are varied, with some reviewers finding it could last almost 12 hours, while others could barely get 4. Acer claims 13 hours of battery life on this laptop, but that seems highly exaggerated based on reviews. Even so, the 8 hours that most reviewers found this laptop could achieve is a severe downgrade from the 11 plus on laptops like the Lenovo Yoga C940 or the Dell XPS 15 2 in 1. Speaking of battery life, the included Acer active stylus lasts several hours on one charge, and can be recharged in a matter of minutes. Even though the Acer Spin 5 doesn’t have the best battery life in its class, it’s still more than enough for a day of notetaking at school or the office.

Ports/Expandability

2 in 1s aren’t always the best when it comes to connectivity, but that’s definitely not a factor on the Acer Spin 5. This laptop has two USB type A ports, two USB C ports, a charging port, an HDMI out port, an audio jack, and a microSD card slot. Unlike similarly priced competitors like the Dell XPS 13 9365, this computer can be charged either through the dedicated charging port, or through one of the USB C ports, depending on your needs.

Build Quality

The Acer Spin 5 is solidly built while still remaining compact and lightweight. The touchscreen is made of super-strong Gorilla Glass, which not only protects from light wear and tear but also provides a good enough amount of friction when writing with the active pen. One common complaint with the Acer Spin 5 is its heat management: when on a table, this doesn’t pose much of an issue, but using it on your lap or trying to hold it in tablet mode can be rather frustrating as the fan blows hot air over your hands or lap.

Value

The $1000 price tag is on par with several other comparable convertible laptops, so choosing the Acer Spin 5 will ultimately come down to how you want to use this computer. If you are looking for something with a moderately fast Intel Core CPU that you can use for school or work, it’s absolutely worth your time. This isn’t a dedicated gaming computer and honestly can run the bare minimum when it comes to games (i.e. visual novels), but not everyone needs or wants that. If you want a great note taking device that can easily connect to wi fi, check out the Acer Spin 5.

Acer Spin 5 Wrap Up

While not a perfect computer, the Acer Spin 5 is sure to please working professionals and college students, especially those that like the option of using an active stylus. This convertible laptop feels strong and sturdy without being overly heavy or bulky, though sometimes it does get rather hot in your hands or on your lap. The battery life is shorter than that on competitors, but still should be enough to get you through the day. If your using this as a dedicated note taking tool, you’ll be happy with the 3:2 aspect ratio, but it does make movies appear rather small on the already small 13” screen.

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Zoe Dumas

Zoe is a digital native who cannot remember a time when she didn’t have access to some type of computer. When she’s not busy researching the latest innovations in technology, Zoe loves playing video games, watching movies and TV, reading books, and playing with her two cats.

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