Acer Swift X3 review: Solid specs, including Intel’s dGPU, but build quality disappoints Review

The fourteen-inch Acer Swift 3X, announced in Oct past 12 months, was an early adopter of Intel’s 11th technology Core processors, and among the the initially with Iris Xe MAX discrete graphics. This marked the Swift 3X as a product to look out for. It has taken a though to arrive in the British isles, but setting up at £899 (inc. VAT £749.sixteen ex. VAT, or $899.ninety nine in the US), does this laptop computer supply fantastic benefit for revenue for know-how employees and — many thanks to the dGPU — creators? 

The Acer Swift 3X arrives in two color variants, Steam Blue and Safari Gold. My Steam Blue variant experienced a metallic sheen to its blue/gray end, which was relatively pleasing. Both equally color schemes have a bright eco-friendly/blue strip all the way along the outer edge of the hinge, with capitalised Swift branding in the middle supplying an eye-catching ‘designer’ contact. 


Acer’s fourteen-inch Swift 3X operates on 11th technology Intel Core i5 or i7 processors with discrete Iris Xe MAX graphics.

Photos: Acer


The ‘Swift ‘branding on the exterior of the display hinge gives a designer contact.

Impression: Sandra Vogel / ZDNet

If you want to have this laptop computer all-around, its 1.37kg excess weight is suitable for a fourteen-inch product. It is really a minimal on the thick side at seventeen.95mm, whilst the desktop footprint is tidy at 322.8mm broad by 212.2mm deep. When you lift the lid the hinge mechanism leads to the again to push down and the base to increase, presenting the keyboard at a slight angle. The display hinges again to about one hundred thirty five degrees, which is a good deal for working easily, but you will not be ready to lie the display flat on a desk. 

The establish consists of a good deal of metallic, but it isn’t going to come to feel all that strong. Urgent down even carefully on the lid of my shut evaluation device was enough to thrust it inwards, and I wouldn’t suggest sitting everything on major of this laptop computer when it truly is not in use. I was ready to flex the lid a minimal in my palms when the laptop computer was open and in use, but not to a relating to degree. The base is fairly business all-around the wrist relaxation spot, and as a light-contact typist I only experienced flex in the keyboard spot when mimicking a large-handed typing action. 

The keyboard’s backlit keys are bouncy, with a good deal of travel, and the light ‘thunky’ sound created by typing is not intrusive. The double-height Enter vital butts correct up to the hash/tilde vital, which is a minimal odd, but did not generate any precision troubles for me. The arrow keys are nice and significant. There’s a Fn vital that disables the touchpad, which could be helpful, whilst there is certainly no different for cursor manage as the display is not contact-responsive. There’s a fingerprint sensor in the wrist relaxation and a 720p webcam higher than the display which lacks each IR/Home windows Hello there functionality and a stability include.   


The backlit keyboard sits at a relaxed typing angle, but large-handed typists may well recognize some flex. 

Impression: Sandra Vogel / ZDNet

The fourteen-inch display sits in slender but not minimum bezels: I calculated the side bezels at about 5.5mm, the major bezel at about 8.5mm and the bottom bezel at all-around 13.5mm. Nonetheless, there is certainly a narrow black border involving the display edge and the bezels. On my evaluation device this border was of equivalent sizing on left and correct sides, and just a few of pixels broad. On the major and bottom edges it was skewed so that it was (to me) visibly deeper on the higher correct than the higher left, and deeper on the decreased left than the decreased correct. I know that in day-to-day use this would irritate me considerably. 

Top ZDNET Critiques

The non-contact IPS exhibit is matte relatively than reflective, which is welcome. Its FHD (1,920 x 1,080, sixteen:9, 157.3ppi) resolution allowed me to do the job with two paperwork open side by side, whilst a deeper sixteen:10 part ratio would be even much better. 

The stereo speakers deliver a good deal of volume and respectable audio high quality. There’s almost nothing excellent here, but the speakers are definitely fantastic enough for video calls and occasional just after-hrs multimedia use. 

My Acer Swift 3X evaluation unit ran on an 11th technology Intel Core i7-1165G7 processor with 16GB of RAM and a 1TB SSD. Its record price is currently £1,199 (inc. VAT £999.ninety nine ex. VAT) at Acer’s British isles on the net store. If that is also steep, you are going to find a Core i5-dependent model on Amazon for £899, with 8GB RAM and a 512GB SSD.

Acer has executed an intricate cooling process to cope with the 11th technology processor and its discrete Iris Xe MAX graphics, which has 4GB of dedicated video RAM. There’s a distinguished grille at the major of the keyboard portion, which isn’t going to look terrific but is there to enable warmth out. There’s also a significant grilled spot on the underside, and though the aforementioned base-lifting hinge offers the keyboard at a relaxed angle, it also encourages airflow. 

SEE: Home windows 10 Start menu hacks (TechRepublic Quality)

A Fn-F vital combo cycles you by a few ‘performance’ modes, which will transform the processor loading. This could be helpful if you are irritated by lover sound: I only discovered the lover kicked in when I run up, but it is incredibly noisy, which could irritate end users who often operate demanding workloads. 

Acer gives the Swift 3X with a realistic established of ports and connectors. There’s one particular USB-C Thunderbolt four port, along with a pair of USB three.two ports, a comprehensive-sizing HDMI connector and a three.5mm headset jack. Thankfully, the one USB-C port is not required for charging, as there is certainly a proprietary round-pin connector for that. There’s a little cost indicator LED on the correct edge, as well as one particular that lets you know when the laptop computer is switched on — handy if you’ve got just shut the lid relatively than run down. 

Acer quotes a headline battery everyday living of seventeen.5 hrs for the Swift 3X range, but fourteen hrs for my Core i7/Iris Xe MAX evaluation configuration. Even the latter may perhaps be a little bit optimistic under genuine-entire world workloads. My regular check, working into crafting applications though streaming sound and occasional video, and with a number of open browser windows, saw the fifty seven.8Wh battery drain from comprehensive to seventy five% in excess of a few hrs, offering an estimate of twelve hrs. However, that is relaxed all-working day battery everyday living for most know-how employees, and even some creators building use of the discrete Iris Xe MAX GPU with extra demanding workloads. Acer states the battery will rapid-cost to give 4 hrs of use in 30 minutes. Unfortunately my evaluation device arrived with out an Asus charger, so I wasn’t ready to check this. 


Impression: Acer


Acer’s Swift 3X is a well-specified laptop computer with the most recent Intel Core processors and discrete Iris Xe MAX graphics. The Core i7 CPU, 16GB of RAM and 1TB of SSD storage in my evaluation device carried out well, and even the entry-stage Core i5 model provides 8GB and 512GB. We like the matte display, and whilst its ‘blingy’ hinge will not charm to anyone, it does insert some pizzazz to the style and design. It would have been fantastic to see two USB-C Thunderbolt four ports, and that wonky exhibit panel in my evaluation device is a worry hopefully it was just a glitch. 

Modern AND Similar Content material

Acer Swift 3X evaluation: A lightweight laptop computer for creators under $1,000 (CNET)

Acer ConceptD seven Ezel evaluation: A multi-method creator laptop computer with extraordinary GPU functionality

Acer reportedly targeted with $fifty million ransomware assault

What laptop computer should I acquire? Home windows 10 or MacOS, in addition 10 extra points to look at

Greatest laptop computer in 2021

Read extra testimonials