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Acer Swift 3 Review: Affordable Lightweight All-Rounder

Acer Swift 3

The Acer Swift 3 got refreshed with AMD’s Ryzen 4000 series CPU, and we couldn’t wait to get our hands on one to try them out. Acer Malaysia agreed to send us a review unit, and our time working with it has been an absolute pleasure. But before we go into the review, let’s recap a little on the specs.

Acer Swift 3 – Specifications

SpecsAMD Ryzen 4000 Variant
CPUAMD Ryzen 5 4500U (6C / 6T @ up to 4 GHz), 8M Cache 15W TDP, 7nm FinFET
RAM8GB DDR4
GPUAMD Radeon Graphics
Storage512GB NVMe PCIe SSD
Display14″ FHD (1920 X 1080) IPS display, high-brightness Acer ComfyView LED-backlit TFT LCD
ConnectivityWireless:
802.11a/b/g/n/ac/ax Wi-Fi (Dual Band 2.4 GHz & 5 GHz)
Intel Wireless Wi-Fi 6 AX201
2×2 MU-MIMO technology
Bluetooth 5.0

I/O:
1 x USB Type-C (supports USB 3.1 Gen2, DisplayPort, Thunderbolt)
1 x USB 3.1 (supports power-off charging)
1 x USB 2.0
1 x HDMI
Audio1 x Combo Audio Jack
Array Microphones
Dimensions323 x 218.9 x 15.95 mm (W x D x H)
Weight1.2 kg

Design

Acer Swift 3

The Acer Swift 3 has features a slim body and straight edges reminiscent of a MacBook Pro, but thinner. The front lip of the laptop has an etched in section for you to lift the laptop up. Unfortunately, you can’t do that with just one finger.

On the left, you will find the charging adapter port, USB Type-C port, HDMI port, and a USB 3.0 Type-A port. On the right, there’s the Kensington lock, another USB 3.0 Type-A port, and a 3.5mm audio combo jack. There’s also a fingerprint reader, and that’s super convenient because it rids you of putting your password/pin every time you want to login.

The display can also be laid flat all the way down 180-degrees, that would be useful for when you’re trying to present or show something to the person opposite you. E.g. meetings, meme sharing, and etc. The laptop itself is lightweight, weighing in at 1.5KG.

Display

Acer Swift 3

The 14-inch FHD IPS display sure has great viewing angles. Colours doesn’t distort when viewed from the sides, but the display does have a warmer tone to it. The display’s brightness is acceptable, though I wished it could’ve been brighter.

Details are sharp, and while colours aren’t that vivid, it’s still a great display to work on because readability is superb when it comes to longform texts. The side bezels are also pretty thin, giving it a more immersive look when you’re watching movies or playing some games.

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User Experience

Acer Swift 3

The keyboard is really comfortable to type on, but the keyboard deck does suffer a bit of flex. The keyboard itself features a nice keystroke travel distance, and it is backlit so it’s great for those late night work sessions. With that said, you can’t adjust the brightness of the keyboard’s backlit lighting, so you’re stuck with just one setting. The keyboard’s layout is great, and the top function key row is convenient.

Acer Swift 3

But, the only thing I didn’t like about it is that the arrow clusters are squeezed so thin, it didn’t feel comfortable to press on at all. Not only that, the keys are quite muted, so there isn’t any loud clacking even when you’re typing those angry emails. The top row function keys are also half the size of the regular keys, and I wish Acer would’ve made them the same size since there seems to be space above it. That would’ve made the function keys easier to recognize from a distance.

Acer Swift 3 trackpad

I would say the trackpad is just the right size for this laptop size, and the palm rejection works great. My palm would hover above it, but it efficiently cancels out any accidental touches. The surface isn’t that smooth, probably because of the aluminium material, but it’s still acceptable for daily use.

Connectivity ports are sufficient, but it would’ve been better if Acer included one more USB Type-A port. If you have an external keyboard and mouse, the USB ports would’ve all been used up. If you want to connect any more devices to the laptop, you’d then need a USB hub for it, and that’s just a hassle.

Performance

Acer Swift 3

Performance wise, the laptop performs excellently. It’s snappy, apps launch almost immediately, and the laptop boots up really fast too. Thanks to the Ryzen 5 4000 series CPU, the laptop is great at multitasking.

PCMark 10 – Extended

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In our PCMark 10 Extended test, the laptop scored a 3,588 score. In an SSD Speed test, we used CrystalDisk Mark and the laptop performed fairly well achieving speeds of up to 2180MB/s.

Acer Swift 3 Review: Affordable Lightweight All-Rounder 18

FFXIV: Shadowbringers

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In FFXIV: Shadowbringers benchmarking test, it achieved a fairly high score of 3,142 when tested with high laptop settings.

It is also worth noting that the Acer Swift 3 has Wi-Fi 6 connectivity to ensure Internet speed is at its highest possible, and to future proof the laptop when Wi-Fi 6 is more accessible to the market.

3DMark – Time Spy

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3DMark – Sky Diver

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3DMark – Night Raid

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3DMark – Fire Strike

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Audio

Acer Swift 3

The downward firing speakers are located on the bottom of the laptop, and the sound bounces off the table. This does increase the stereo sound effect. Volume wise, the laptop only starts to get loud after the 50%. Anything before that, I can barely hear anything.

The mids are great as vocals are crystal clear, highs are clear and bright. That being said, the speakers practically have no bass at all. So if you want to listen to music, you’re better off plugging in a pair of headphones or external speakers.

Battery

Acer Swift 3

We ran the Acer Swift 3 in a 1080p video loop for its battery test. It ran for about 7 hours and 12 minutes, which is pretty impressive. In our PCMark 10 battery test, the laptop lasted for 6 hours 2 minutes on performance mode with power profile set to balanced. On battery saver mode and balanced power profile, the laptop managed to last almost extra two hours. That’s an extra 1 hour and 57 minutes to be exact.

Conclusion

Acer Swift 3

For the price of RM2,599, the Acer Swift 3 is a great choice for anyone who wants something ultraportable without breaking the bank (or your back). It’s affordably priced, and the AMD Ryzen 5’s performance is something you won’t need to worry about. It’s got a thin and light body that you can carry around with you all day to almost anywhere. With all that bundled in one slim package, the Acer Swift 3 will be a tough laptop to beat when it comes to bang for buck ratio.

Written By

Chief Content Developer at The AXO

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