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Product review - Acer Aspire E11 laptop
August 28, 2014
As I mentioned in the recent update to the article about my mobile office, I had to replace two laptop computers. The machine chosen to replace them was an Acer Aspire E11, model number E3-111-C9AR.
The specifications of the machine were rather basic. It's not my main computer so it doesn't need to be super powerful. The main use for it is doing training and demonstrations and to provide something reasonably light to carry when I'm travelling. It obviously had to run Windows and have enough disk space to store all the programs and data that I travel with. It also needed enough power to run my everyday programs at a reasonable speed. Price was also a consideration, because this is not my main computer so there was no real need to spend a fortune on it.
Things that it doesn't have:
Rather surprisingly the small amount of RAM doesn't appear to have affected performance badly. Large programs like Photoshop can be slow to load but once they are running performance is quite adequate. It was never going to be a ball of fire, but a Celeron isn't an i7 either. The sort of use to which I put it generally doesn't require me to have more than one program running at a time, so I can live with the performance. Program starting times would be improved by replacing the hard disk with an SSD device but there is no great urgency to spend money on this right now.
I haven't had the thing long enough to know how long it will last and what sort of treatment it can stand, but it feels robust, the keyboard has a strong feel to it, and my experience with Acer products suggests that it should remain useful for a long time. My only concern is that the screen can contact the base just above the keyboard when the cover is closed, leaving a mark on the screen. Whether this would turn into permanent scratching I don't know, but I use a small square of thin foam which I place on the keyboard when I close the cover.
The Acer Aspire E11 is a perfectly adequate computer for people with limited needs. It doesn't pretend to be a powerhouse machine, but for someone who just needs to write some letters, do some accounts, maybe do some photo manipulation, play music with iTunes, and the usual Internet things like web and email it will do the job quite well. I'm certainly satisfied with it and I don't regret the purchase at all.
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