Acer Aspire 8920G 18.4in Blu-ray Notebook Review - Acer Aspire 8920G Review

As you might expect for a machine of this kind there’s a wealth of connectivity options. Starting on the left edge you’ll find both modem and Gigabit Ethernet ports. These are separated by an air vent and followed by the video connections, with both D-SUB and the obligatory HDMI output as well. Then there are a couple of USB ports and finally the audio jacks, which comprise a combined headphone and S/PDIF port, a microphone jack and a Line-in.

On the right you’ll find a 54mm ExpressCard slot, though regrettably there’s no mini-remote, the Blu-ray optical drive and a further two USB ports that bring the total up to an ample four in all. Set into the screen bezel is a 0.3-megapixel webcam and an integrated microphone.

Having poured some scorn on the keyboard, the touchpad is less contentious. It’s sunk into the chassis, as is the fashion these days, is well proportioned and has well marked scroll zones. Below, between the touch pad buttons, is a fingerprint reader and though it’s not the most convenient location it’s a useful addition.

There are, however, a few things that the 8920G lacks despite its otherwise ample feature set. Primary among them is a TV tuner and it’s a surprising omission. Indeed, though there are configurations that include TV tuners, they’re included in models that feature slower graphics cards, so if you want the extra horsepower provided by the 9650M GS provided here, you’ll have to go without – very odd.

More annoying is the lack of any kind of remote in the box. In a multimedia machine such as this it seems a fairly glaring omission, especially when even some smaller laptops have ExpressCard style remote controls included.

Software provided is adequate without any stand out additions. There’s a full version of Microsoft Works 8.5 and trial versions of both Office 2007 and McAfee Internet Security. All the basics for DVD authoring and Blu-ray playback are included, though Acer’s own brand utilities remain an acquired taste.

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