"This Best Selling Acer Aspire V5-531-4636 15.6-Inch HD Display Laptop (Black) Tends to SELL OUT VERY FAST! If this is a MUST HAVE product, be sure to Order Now to avoid disappointment!"
Acer Aspire V5-531-4636 Notebook comes with these specs: Intel® Pentium® Dual-Core Processor 967, Genuine Windows 7 Home Premium (64-bit), 15.6" HD Widescreen CineCrystal LED Back-Lit Display, Mobile Intel HM70 Express Chipset, 4096MB DDR3 Memory, Intel® HD Graphics with 128MB of dedicated system memory, 500GB 5400RPM SATA Hard Drive, 8X DVD-SuperMulti Double-Layer Drive, Built-in 1.3MP HD Webcam, 2-in-1 Digital Media Card Reader, Optimized Dolby® Advanced Audio® v2 audio enhancement, High Definition Audio Support, 802.11b/g/n WiFi CERTIFIED, Bluetooth® 4.0+HS, LAN/VGA combo port, 2 – USB 2.0 Ports, 1 – USB 3.0 Port, 1 – HDMITM Port with HDCP Support, Multi-gesture Touchpad, 4-cell Li-ion Battery (2500 mAh), up to 4-hours of battery life, 5.07 lbs. | 2.3 kg (system unit only), AC Power Adapter, AC Power Cord, Wireless Setup Card, Registration/ Limited Warranty Card, Microsoft Office Starter 2010, McAfee Internet Security Suite Trial (60-day trial)
It is a beautiful laptop. Sleek and light weight. [See update at the end Jan042013]
I have an HP g7 1326dx that I just got a few months ago. This unit fares very favorably and despite some of the things noted below, I’d choose this one over that one. The Acer is noticably snappier, the display is better looking and the USB 3.0 port seals the deal. Integrated bluetooth 4.0-HS is a great added value that the 1326dx doesn’t have, 4.0 or otherwise. That dang dongle is just about a deal breaker though. For what it is worth, the Windows score for the HP is 4.5 and the Acer is 4.3. HP’s graphics drag it way down and the processor drags the Acer down.
The touch pad has no left/right buttons so that is something to get used to. The bottom part of the pad tilts down for clicks. I’ve found right clicking to be a challenge. Put your finger pad on the edge of the hard plastic and use your finger tip for right clicks.
Left clicks that need to be held, like Chrome’s back button being held to see history, requires use of the bottom left click as opposed to a tap and hold anywhere.
The keyboard is part of the ventilation system so it cannot be covered with a protector if you like to use those.
The display is really crisp.
Although it doesn’t come with a restore disk, you can make one. It offers to do that when you boot up the first time. Mine said I’d need 5 DVDs (~15 gig) but I reckon you could cut it down with higher capacity disks. If you don’t have any pick some up so you can burn your restore image right off the bat.
Battery life is okay. I played some mp3s for about 2 hours before the battery gave out. Far short of the 4 hour mark but running the built in speakers non-stop isn’t what you’d do anyway on battery power alone. I was just curious to see how long the battery would last. The 1326dx has much better battery life but it has 6 cells and weighs a little over a pound more.
There is one USB 3.0 port and two 2.0 ports. It is hard to believe that the price difference in the two types of ports is the reason for not having all three be version 3.0. It is backwards compatable with 2.0. The performance difference is huge. I’m guessing it was mostly a marketing decision so folks don’t have to know 3.0 is backwards compatable or even what backward compatible means. A nice 3.0 thumb drive would be cool to get with this laptop: Corsair Flash Survivor USB 3.0 32GB Drive (CMFSV3-32GB)
I ran a some casual tests on the USB ports. Wow! The 3.0 thumb drive is super fast even on the 2.0 ports. I found that copying to the drive on the 3.0 was almost as fast on the 2.0 as the 3.0 port. For testing I used a folder that had a couple of dozen files with a size of about 450MB. The 3.0 was as quick as 28 seconds and the 2.0 was around 35 seconds.
I tested the same folder on my HP's 2.0 port and it took 101 seconds to transfer the folder to the drive.
So a good USB 3.0 drive would be a great purchase to go with your new laptop if you don't have one yet.
All 3 USB ports are on the left side. Something to be aware of for sure. My other laptop has one port on the right side and two on the left which I find to be very convenient. All other ports for the Acer are also on the left side. The right side has only the DVD drive. A USB hub may be handy: J-Tech Digital SuperSpeed USB 3.0 4-Port Hub Backward Compatible with USB 2.0 with USB 3.0 Cable
There is no Lan plug. Nor is there a monitor port. Instead Acer has created a proprietary port that uses a dongle cable for external monitor and RJ-45 cable. I’m on the fence about that as a feature. It means that you have to keep up with the dongle or you won’t be able to use a Lan cable or D-plug type monitor. So if you forget or lose the dongle and the location you are at does not have wifi you’re up the creek for Internet access. WiFi is built in so that may not be an issue for you at all.
There is a built in HDMI port so you could use that if you didn’t have the dongle with you. As long as someone had a handy HDMI cable and a monitor that supported it. Bah.
Amazon has this in the tech details: “500 GB 5400 rpm Hard Drive Solid-State Drive”. Acer lists the drive like that too. According to Hitachi it is a SATA drive. [edit: Nor is it a Hybrid HD. Just a plain old normal HD.]
I really like this laptop. The snappiness seems to be better than the HP, which is a quad-core, and the screen looks better. It is a lot of bang for the buck.
[Update Jan 4th 2013
If you will need to do a lot of typing with this laptop's built-in keyboard you may want to rethink your purchase. I noticed that I made more mistakes on this laptop but I assumed it was just my poor typing skills. In the comments Running Rampant asked about that very thing.
I've been using a USB keyboard for a while now. So if that is an option then the no worries.
The past 8 years has involved *extensive* travel for me, so I look at technology on the go from a unique perspective – as someone who must pack light for crazy situations within the US, usually last minute, for unknown durations, yet needing access to current technology including a fully functional reliable laptop. The Acer Aspire V5-531-4636 15.6-Inch HD Display Laptop (Black) is just that – the perfect laptop for today’s Road Warrior. The laptop is designed for both work and entertainment in a form fitting feather light weight complete package that runs cool to the touch – no more burnt legs from typing that report (or book) while resting in the recliner or in bed.
Easy setup and configuration – straight from the box to streaming Netflix in 10 minutes, flat. Wow. IMPRESSIVE smooth HD video! Great digital audio via “virtual surround sound” (per an audiophile!) Not alot of included junk and papers, just the bare minimums without sacrificing anything necessary, also impressive (and saves a few trees!) The viewing angle of the obviously HD screen is good – I can readily read the screen or watch a video from a 45 degree angle to the screen.
Feather-light-weight, form fitting, cool package – easy to use keyboard, very intuitive even in the dark for this touch-typist. Love the built-in numeric keypad! (This review was written and posted via this laptop during the first half-hour of use… during therapy time (while flat on my back…))
Included in the box:
Laptop and Battery (when installed appears as part of the hinge – so tiny!)
typical 2-part power cord
Dongle for ethernet and 15 pin video (neither of which are used as much with today’s technology but great to have for those necessary times.)
small collection of assorted documentation
Ports and Features:
15.6″ HD display with true 16:9 aspect ratio viewable at least a 45 degree viewing angle
4 GB ram, 500 GB hard drive
1.3 megapixel webcam
Left Side – Front to Rear:
Headphone/headset – standard size (supports headset mic – double circuit single jack)
2 USB 2.0
1 USB 3.0
HDMI – full size
Dongle Port (ethernet and 15 pin video)
Right Side – Front to Rear:
DVD-RW multi-drive (not always built into laptops anymore)
Cable lock port
SD/SDHC/MMC card reader
All in all I am very impressed. I have not yet found how to “right click” with the built-in keypad as there are no left/right click buttons near the touchpad (instead I plugged in a mouse, for now…) left click is the typical tap on the touchpad. This laptop is now my goto laptop for both daily use and for those crazy days traveling whether for business or for pleasure.
The other reviewers have given you a lot of the specifics, so I will just focus on the look and feel. This computer is extremely thin and light. I have a 10″ notebook that feels heavier than this. It’s a very sleek design and looks a lot more expensive than what it costs. If you carry your computer around a lot, you’ll be very pleased with the size. The battery is really small, but I have found that it usually last for around 3 – 3.5 hours, depending on the activity, so it really stands up well. The charging time doesn’t take too long either. I like the feel of the keyboard, nothing seems awkward. The touchpad takes a bit of getting used to, but I like it fine. I really like that it came with Windows 7 Premium. I have an Acer notebook that just had Home Basic and I had to pay to upgrade to Premium, so it’s awesome that I didn’t have to with this one. I also love that they included Word and Excel since I use both of those a lot. The display is very sharp and clear which is great for watching movies. You won’t be disappointed with this purchase.
I really love this Acer Aspire notebook. I’ve had 3 laptops, and I would say this is my favorite. I’m not at all technically inclined, so I can’t say much about the technical side, except that 3 of my brothers who are “techi’s” tried the Aspire out and all of them really liked it.
My last laptop was a Toshiba satellite, and this notebook makes that laptop seem huge, yet it has the same size screen, and does everything and more than the Toshiba does. None of my other laptops had a webcam or microphone, and this one does, so I can talk and see my relatives that live out of state, which is really cool!
My favorite thing about it is probably the speakers, though. I’ve always had to use an external speaker with my laptops because the speakers weren’t loud enough. These speakers are excellent, and loud! I haven’t had to use an external speaker for anything – not Netflix, YouTube, iTunes or anything I’ve listened to.
I’m just a basic computer user – using email, facebook, iTunes, Netflix, etc., and I do a lot of online shopping – this computer does everything I need it to and more. I also had a chance to deal with the Acer online customer service because something happened to my adapter cord (I suspect my puppy, but don’t know for sure). I asked where I could buy a new one, and they sent me one for free! It got here in about 2 days, so I have to say their customer service is also excellent.
The computer has a nice, sleek look, it’s very light as well. I honestly can’t think of a single con for this one, and I highly recommend it.
UPDATE: 29 Nov 2012:
I continue to use this laptop and it continues to perform without any issues other than the battery not staying fully charged as noted in my last update. If you do nothing and leave the laptop plugged in and running, the battery seems to drop to 92% and then just stays at that level unless you power cycle it (see my July update).
I have the full version of Office 2010 loaded on this laptop as well as Visio Pro and everything runs perfectly. I am still pleased with the performance of this laptop and continue to recommend it as an excellent value for an entry level computer.
UPDATE: 27 July 2012:
I have been using this computer constantly now for about two months and it has started to show battery issues. If the computer is left plugged in and turned on for a period of 5 days or more, the battery level indicates that the charge level is starting to drop (around 94 to 95% charge) and states that the battery is not charging. The only way I have found to fix this is to unplug the power supply with the computer turned on and to drain the battery for at least 10 minutes. After that amount of time, you can plug it back in and the battery will start charging again and take it up to 100%. This then seems to hold until you leave it plugged in and turned on for 4 to 5 days. At that point, you need to go through the same process all over again.
This probably would not be an issue if you constantly use the computer on battery and only plug it in to charge it. However, if you are using it as a desktop unit for any amount of time you should pay attention to the charge level on the battery. Experience with other laptops that exhibit this has shown that if you do not pay attention and the charge level continues to drop, you may NOT be able to recharge the battery and will need to buy a replacement! Just something to keep in mind.
I received this product through the Amazon Vine program. This is a light weight 15 inch laptop that is configured as an entertainment, Internet use, and light computing work laptop. The battery is a 4 cell unit that is probably the smallest battery I have ever seen for a laptop. However, it delivers a bit over 3 hours when playing a DVD with the wireless connected to the network. The laptop is very thin, so thin in fact that it cannot support a wired Ethernet connection and resorts to a dongle that provides a video connection and an Ethernet connection (the cable is a Y configuration). This makes for a very light computer. Of course, if you have wireless, the dongle is probably not needed. The wireless on this computer is VERY easy to setup! It also supports all of the current standards. I had no problem connecting to my n-router.
Here are the features of this laptop:
The laptop is configured to deliver the best display for videos. As such, it displays in wide format at 720p and has a screen resolution max of 1366 X 768. Videos look decent as long as they are viewed straight on. Moving up or down and left and right from direct view causes the image to fade and colors to disappear.
The audio is pretty typical of what you would expect from most laptops, tinny sounding at the best and high volume distorts. If you want to watch a movie, I would suggest using headphones! I have a pair of Sony Studio headphones and with those I have more than acceptable audio. This same caveat also applies to music; use either headphones or good powered speakers if you want acceptable audio.
One of the amazing features of this laptop is the fact that the keyboard contains a full 10 key on it. Now, this is not a big deal if you do not work with numbers very much, but it is a great feature if you do a lot of numeric inputs into something like Excel. As long as we are talking about the keyboard functions, I find that the keys are responsive and I have not had any issues with them. I type about 100 WPM and I have a rather heavy hand as I learned to type on a manual typewriter (Ok, I know I am as old as dirt!). So, the fact that there is not any key bounce (double or triple letters on a key stroke) indicates a fairly well made keyboard in my experience. The widescreen format of the display allows for the increased real-estate for the keyboard width to support the full keyboard functions.
The touchpad on this computer is fairly large and includes the normal right and left click positions. This design provides a lot of area for being able to use your fingers to move the cursor, it also provides a wonderful opportunity for frustration as you try to right or left click on something. The reason for the problem is that since the area where you right and left click are also part of the touch pad area, if you do not strike straight down for the function you can wind up moving the cursor to something you did not intend to strike instead of the function that you were looking for. This is NOT my favorite feature of the computer and may be an area where I would adjust to in time. For me, however, this simply means that I connect a wireless mouse to the computer to use instead of the touch pad.
Speaking of using a wireless mouse, this computer only has two USB 2.0 ports and one USB 3.0 port. So, if you normally connect a few devices via USB ports, you are going to need an external port hub. One thing that helps with this limitation is the fact that the computer has built in Blue Tooth so if you have devices that will work with that you do not need to use a USB port.
As long as we are talking about external connections, this computer does have all of the options covered. There is a HDMI port, a combined VGA and LAN port (a supplied Y-cable plugs into a special port and that provides the VGA and LAN connections), a thoughtfully located combined mike/speaker/headphone connection on the left side of the computer right up front, two USB 2.0 and one USB 3.0 port, and the power connection all on the left side of the computer. A two in one card reader, battery charge indicator (orange when charging and blue when charged) and power indicator (blue) is located in front. The DVD drive and Kensington lock location are on the right side of the computer. All in all, a well thought out design that makes it easy to use.
The DVD drive is just that, a DVD drive that will read and write DVDs or CDs. It does NOT read Blue Ray disks so that may limit some of your movie choices.
The battery for this laptop is a very small 4 cell unit. The advantage in this is that the battery adds very little weight to the computer! The disadvantage is that the run time on battery is limited. The company lists a 4 hour battery life and I found that if you are using a DVD to play a movie and have your wireless turned on at the same time that the battery life is about 3 hours and 10 minutes. Long enough to watch a full length movie and then some.
Probably the two biggest limitations of this computer are the processor and the graphics chip. If you go to the Windows Experience Index (on the System Tab) this computer has a 4.3 number which is driven by the processor. The next limitation is graphics with a 4.5 while it surprisingly has a 5.6 gaming graphics listing. Still, the processor limitations will probably limit any gaming that you might be doing on this computer. If you do any picture editing and like making videos out of your pictures, you will find that the processor works well enough although rendering the pan and zoom features makes the playback a bit jerky.
Memory on this computer is delivered with a single 4 Gig memory module with room for a second memory module (the maximum memory the system bios will support is 8 Gig). This is unusual in that they did not put in two smaller and less expensive 2 Gig memory sticks. This allows you to just buy a single 4 Gig memory module to upgrade to the full supported memory maximum. The memory is easy to get at with the need to only remove two Philips screws. Lift the door carefully as there are two plastic snaps that must be overcome to fully open the door. Also, when you go to close it up again apply pressure gradually in the middle of the door as you close it to re-engage the plastic snaps. Then, re-install the two Philips screws and you are done.
This computer comes loaded with Microsoft Office (requires you to purchase a license key to be able to use all of the features) that gives you basic Word and Excel functionality if you do not purchase a license key. This is not trial software so it will not die in 90 days. This may be enough Office software to be adequate for many people.
Other things loaded on the computer include e-bay, Facebook, Netflix, Skype, and Nook for PC. These are all entertainment types of shortcuts. There is a 60 day version of McAfee anti-virus that will hound you to purchase the balance of a year’s protection ( personally, I find the free version of anti-virus software from Microsoft (Microsoft Security Essentials) to work extremely well and it eliminates a recurring fee). They have also loaded Window’s Live which provides you with several useful programs (including photo editing) that work quite well. Several games and a shopping center for games are included. As usual, there is a lot of software that you will probably wind up removing, but they do provide you with lots of options.
Speaking of options, the browser is preconfigured with BING as the search engine and with the BING tool bar. You will find that if you want to want to use another search engine, you also need to remove the BING tool bar or you will not realize that anything has changed.
All in all, this is a great laptop for the price for someone looking to surf the Internet, watch videos, have a cool looking laptop computer, and that wants to do business type of work (spreadsheets, Word documents, etc.), and e-mail. If you are looking for a gaming computer, a computer that will support intense graphics, or extended run times on battery, this is NOT the computer for you.
Here is a link for a valuable quick reference for your new computer: [...]
This link will provide you with a usable reference that shows you how to turn on and off Blue Tooth, Wireless, the touch keypad, and what all of the hot keys that are on the computer. This reference is much better than the one that shipped with the computer (too generic as it covered several models of computers).
I would also like to note that while they made it very easy for you to add memory to the computer, they also made it impossible for you to change out the hard drive! If you want to change the hard drive you need to ship it back to the company to have them change it as it is sealed in the unit. Shades of Apple technology here.
I have continued to use the computer extensively and find that it is keeping a very solid 3 hours with Wireless turned on and the DVD player in use. When I turn off wireless (both Blue Tooth and network) and I refrain from using the DVD player, I am getting just under 4 hours.
While this computer is very thin and light weight, I find it a bit large for use on a plane (if you travel in economy class like I do) and a bit bulky. I still prefer to use my 13 inch laptop for that function even though it is not as thin as this one is, it does better with the space on the plane if you plan on working while you fly.
The Acer Aspire V5-531-4636 15.6-Inch HD Display Laptop (Black) is a very solid laptop. It provides a very good value for all that it includes. It does not have a high end processor, but for a budget laptop it is thin and very functional. Installation was relatively quick; it took about 2 hours after running Windows Update and updating the McAfee trial anti-virus. At the time of this review, I have been using this unit about 2 weeks. Performance has been very good so far, and it has run longer and cooler than I expected it to.
++ Super-thin form-factor is more akin to an ultra-book than a laptop
++ Light and portable at 5 lbs
++ 15.6 HD screen is clear and attractive
++ Windows Experience index rating 4.3 right out of the box
++ 1 USB 3.0 port for faster data transfers
++ 2 additional USB 2.0 ports for a total of 3
++ HDMI port for external monitor / TV hookups
++ Bluetooth 4.0
++ Includes a complimentary version of Office Starter (Word & Excel), something not all entry level laptops include
++ Chicklet keyboard is comfortable to type on
++ Number pad integrated into the keyboard
++ 4GB RAM can be upgraded to 8GB
++ Durable matte surface stands up to use and looks attractive
++ 2-in-1 slot for SD and MMC memory cards
++ Basic built-in webcam and microphone
++ Thin hinge-sized battery pack will make it easy to buy and carry extras
++ Includes an internal DVD+/-RW DL drive; most similarly thin models don’t
++ Runs the 64-bit version of Windows 7 Home Premium
++ Acer software (eRecovery and Backup Manager) help novice users protect and manage their computers
++ Multi-gesture touchpad is akin to Apple Mac touchpads
++ Despite smaller capacity battery, power management seems to help this guy stay on a few hours (rated at 4 hours, performance is closer to 3 hours)
++ So far it seems to run cooler than my other recent laptop purchases
++ Wireless compatible with 802.11 b/g/n
++ Great value given all the features
– Only includes a 4 cell battery, while alternative models include 6 or 9 cell batteries
– Dual core Pentium B967 has a clock speed of 1.3 Ghz with only 2 MB L3 cache (underpowered compared to better i3 & i5 processors)
– Processor does not support hyper-threading, which aids with multi-tasking or power hungry applications
– The Ethernet VGA ports require a separate dongle
UPGRADES & MAINTENANCE
I would recommend that virtually everybody upgrade to the 8GB of RAM upon purchasing this. Other than putting in a bigger hard-drive, there aren’t any other upgrades one could really do to this machine. The RAM upgrade is the one that will benefit most people most noticeably.
The computer will also prompt you to create factory backup disks. Just have some DVDs handy, create the backup disks, then use the software to setup automatic backups.
I have purchased about 5 other Acer laptops, and this one is an improvement over previous models. I also use several laptops by HP, ASUS and Samsung. This model’s only shortcoming is the limited memory and processor relative to alternatives in the market. However, as a budget model that is to be expected. This is a great value. It has performed very well so far. As long as you don’t plan on running very intensive applications on it, I think it’s a great purchase. I recommend it.
The product arrived much quicker than estimated! The computer itself is great, a little slow compared to the top of the line machines, but a great value. Battery life is much longer than my old computer (3.5 hours with bright screen and heavy surfing). Also:
-super sleek, thin design
-love the the track
-windows 7 premium is awesome
This Acer laptop makes my Toshiba feel like a bag of rocks. My first impression was how little this laptop weighs. Then, it took just minutes out of the box to get it going. Recognized my wireless set-up right away. The display is nice and crisp, although doesn’t come close to more expensive units. I won’t detail the specs in this review since they’ve been more than amply explained. I especially like how small the adapter and battery are. Really makes a difference in weight. I knocked off one star because I just can’t get used to the absence of the right-click. Overall, a nice computer and at even nicer price. I received this laptop courtesy of Amazon Vine.