For performance testing the Acer Aspire 7720G was put through a number of tests, including PCMark 05, PCMark Vantage, our in-house Photoshop Elements and Virtual Dub rendering tests and MobileMark 2007 battery tests. For gaming testing Counter-Strike and Prey were used at various settings, providing a realistic idea of what kind of gaming performance you can expect.
On the whole results were encouraging, with the Acer proving just as quick as its specification would suggest and ensuring that whatever you throw at it should be dealt with okay. Moreover, although this system lacks dual-channel support due to its use of 2GB and 1GB modules to produce the 3GB memory total, this doesn’t have a dramatic effect on performance, with any disparity in results compared to the Rock X770 T7700 likely due to its faster hard disk drive.
Unsurprisingly, gaming performance was a mixed affair. You’re unlikely to be able to play the majority of games at the 1,920 x 1,200 native resolution and even at 1,680 x 1,050 you’ll need to make some compromises to get smooth frame rates. Overall, it’s solid but by no means spectacular and will age quickly as new titles come out over the year. As such, purchasing this as a gaming machine is probably a bad idea.
Likewise, though this is less of an issue for a machine of this size, battery life is fairly ordinary. In the Reader test, a low intensity test, it manages around two hours depending on the power profile used, which is just about sufficient. However, turn up the brightness and play a DVD and battery life quickly plummets, with the 7720G managing only 74 minutes. In any case, as with any machine of this size, you won’t be venturing too far away from a mains plug.
Overall, the Acer Aspire 7720G generates mixed but generally favourable opinions. For the price it’s hard to deny you’re getting a lot for your money, but there are issues that make it less than ideal depending on what usage you require. As a gaming machine it’s a lightweight, which will quickly become defunct over the year to come. However, as a desktop replacement and entertainment PC it has some value, despite the lack of HDMI, a TV Tuner or the fact the HD DVD drive may become an anachronism come the end of the year.
Offering good value and a great specification, the Acer Aspire 7720G is let down by some annoying niggles; a mediocre display and an overall impression that it doesn’t sit quite right anywhere. It’s not a real gaming machine and though it’s a good entertainment PC, it’s by no means perfect. Despite these reservations, if it addresses your needs you’re getting a very fast notebook for your money.
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