Acer has had a big year in 2020, thanks to their close relationship with AMD. Acer has long been a strong partner of AMD, through the good times, and the bad, and right now is about as good a time to be an AMD partner as it can be. AMD’s Renoir platform has been a revolution for their mobile device efforts. The company had strong packages for the desktop really ever since they launched the Ryzen platform in 2017, but those successes did not translate over to the laptop space, but with the latest Ryzen 4000 series processors, aka Renoir, all of that has changed.

Earlier this year, we checked out Acer’s Renoir powered Swift 3 featuring the Ryzen 7 4700U processor. As a thin and light device, the eight-core Ryzen 7 demonstrated far more performance than many laptops costing far, far more. Today, we move away from the thin and light form factor to an entry-level gaming system. The Acer Nitro 5 is a 15.6-inch form factor, offering a 45-Watt AMD Ryzen processor coupled with an NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1650 in the review unit. As usual, Acer offers a fairly wide range of processor and GPU options, but if you are looking to get into a gaming laptop in a very affordable way, this Acer Nitro 5 spec is a solid start.

The Acer Nitro 5 we are checking out today is powered by the AMD Ryzen 5 4600H, which is a 6-core, 12-thread processor powered by AMD’s Zen 2 CPU cores. It offers a base frequency of 3.0 GHz, with a peak turbo of 4.0 GHz, in a 45-Watt TDP. Being a Renoir-based processor, it also offers six compute units of Vega graphics, peaking at 1500 MHz, although in this particular model the integrated GPU plays second fiddle to the NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1650 which offers 896 CUDA cores, and 4 GB of GDDR6.

The Acer Nitro 5 comes with 8 GB of DDR4 RAM in single-channel RAM. Clearly dual-channel would be preferable, but this does give the benefit to the owner of being able to move to 16 GB by just buying a single stick of RAM. Also, since the device has a discrete GPU, system memory is not as critical as it would otherwise be. Storage is also acceptable, but obviously entry-level, with 256 GB of NVMe storage, but the Nitro 5 supports one additional NVMe drive as well as a 2.5-inch SATA drive.

The 15.6-inch display is an IPS panel with a 1920x1080 resolution, and although Acer offers 144 Hz refresh rates on some of the higher-end Nitro 5 models, the base model we are testing today is just a 60 Hz panel.

Acer Nitro 5 AMD Lineup
Model Tested: AN515-44-R99Q $669.99
  AN515-44-R99Q AN515-44-R078 AN515-44-R0DL
CPU AMD Ryzen 5 4600H
6-Core 12-Thread
3.0-4.0 GHz
3MB L2 8MB L3
Vega 6 / 1500MHz
AMD Ryzen 7 4800H
8-Core 16-Thread
2.9-4.2 GHz
4MB L2 8MB L3
Vega 7 / 1600MHz
Discrete GPU NVIDIA GTX 1650
896 CUDA Cores
4GB GDDR6 128-bit
1024 CUDA Cores
4GB GDDR6 128-bit
Display 15.6-inch 1920x1080 IPS
60Hz Refresh
sRGB Target
15.6-inch 1920x1080 IPS
144Hz Refresh
sRGB Target
RAM 8GB DDR4-3200 Single Channel
Upgradable Memory
16GB DDR4-3200 Dual-Channel
Upgradable Memory
Storage 256GB SSD
2 x M.2 (1 free)
1 x 2.5" SATA (free)
2 x M.2 (1 free)
1 x 2.5" SATA (free)
Network Intel AX200 Wi-Fi 6
2x2:2 802.11ax
Killer Gigabit Ethernet
Left Side 2 x USB 3 Type A
Headset Jack
Right Side 1 x USB 3 Type A
1 x USB 3.2 Gen 2 Type-C
Back Power Connector
Battery 51Wh Lithium Ion
135W AC Adapter
Dimensions 363 x 254 x 23.9 mm
14.3 x 10 x 0.94 inches
Weight 2.4 Kg / 5.29 lbs
MSRP $669.99 $999.99 $1,099.99

Overall, there is a lot of laptop packed into this Nitro 5, with Wi-Fi 6 included, along with Gigabit Ethernet if you would rather run wired. There is a USB Type-C port with 3.2 Gen 2, and USB charging, and three Type-A ports. There is HDMI, a backlit keyboard, and more. For the entry price of just $669.99 USD, there is a lot of performance without a large investment of money. Let’s check out the design and see how the Acer Nitro 5 fares with its new, tweaked profile.

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  • Crazyeyeskillah - Sunday, October 11, 2020 - link

    The keys themselves are reasonably, with good resistance and travel.

    Editors: We can do better than this anandtech, really been trying to be loyal despite the drop in quality.
  • Calista - Monday, October 12, 2020 - link

    Obviously built to a budget, but for the money few complains can be raised. $700 give us a decent gaming laptop with no fatal flaws. Sure, the screen could have been better. But a lot of people just don't care all that much when it comes to PQ, and even a bad IPS screen tend to be a good enough.
  • AMDSuperFan - Monday, October 12, 2020 - link

    I am not sure if I am still banned.
  • AMDSuperFan - Monday, October 12, 2020 - link

    I was banned for the big AMD announcements. But since I am back for now, I ask that people do not ask that I be banned for opinions and dialogue. You will note that I never curse or harass others. I simply provide noteworthy opinions on the articles, from my personal perspective of a Super Fan of the AMD company. Why would my personal opinions generate such angst from the community while others say curse words upon one another and engage in angry discourse?

    I am not angry. I am happy and go lucky. Allow me to be!

    All that said, I am super excited about this new budget offering from AMD. AMD may not be the fastest but it is good for those of us on a tight budget. Let the rich fat cats buy the Intel products that are faster with better features. AMD fans like me enjoy a bargain and will give up quality in every aspect of a product for a good deal that is almost as good at some things!
  • lefty2 - Tuesday, October 13, 2020 - link

    mentions no noise at idle, but says nothing about noise at low load. nor does he mention noise levels when coolboost is turned off
  • Johnstron1980 - Friday, December 4, 2020 - link

    I agree with the other commenters! I was SOO close to buying the Nitro 5 2020 with a Ryzen 4800H but then... the screen is so poor. WHYYY?? It seems like a trend to put crappy panels on great Ryzen machines to save the manufacturer a buck. But it does not make sense. I would gladly pay a bit more for a better screen, but the next step up in screen quality on the market is MUCH more expensive. Surely it does not cost the manufacturer that much more to go to the next step up in screen quality?
  • Rec2020 - Monday, July 19, 2021 - link

    I got into photography a few months after getting this laptop. I edit photos on it, but something made it feel flat, and other devices always made my photos look more saturated. Despite calibrating the screen with the built in utility + using a few other on-screen gradient charts etc and having fairly accurate looking hues the saturation has always been an issue. Did some digging just to find this thing only has a 61% of sRGB gamut? Jesus! sRGB is the smallest gamut even used for ANYTHING. It's THOROUGHLY outdated, even the old analog NTSC color space from 1953 is larger than sRGB (which came out in 1993 I think). How do you manage to manufacture something in the 2020s that could be outdone by a 1950s high end CRT TV? Absolutely pathetic.
  • Rec2020 - Monday, July 19, 2021 - link

    Oh, and by the way this laptop's screen also has uneven lighting at the top from the backlights. They point outwards in a ^ shape from the top center. Not sure if it's a widespread issue, but I've seen an in store display for a slightly more recent version of this with that too. Not an issue unless darker content is displayed on screen but worth mentioning.
  • Altuzza - Monday, August 23, 2021 - link

    Even those with a stable income source and are regularly paid salaries can face an emergency when they need cash quickly. I recently used . It literally saved me. There was no money at all. The popularity of payday loans is at its peak today. I don't see anything wrong with that.
  • Maurice Hawkins - Wednesday, February 16, 2022 - link

    It's awesome, I'm looking forward to it. I will go to to download the game and test it on this laptop

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