You need a sleek and powerful device, but you don’t want to pay a ton of money to get it? Yep, you are part of one of the biggest target groups of the new generation. As such, you might be interested in the device we have for you today. It comes from Acer and its name is Aspire 7 (A715-73G). Since we have reviewed a previous version of this model, we are going to compare both devices on numerous occasions throughout the review.

Interestingly, this device is suspiciously familiar to another one we already had. You guessed it right – it is the Acer ConceptD 5 (CN515-51). If you know something about Acer’s latest content creator-oriented series, it must be that all of them are based on existing models. For example, the ConceptD 9 is based on the Predator Triton 900, then the ConceptD 7 is built using the same chassis as the Predator Triton 500. Now – it is the Aspire 7 (A715-73G), that needed to share its design features. Additionally, the laptop is powered by the same Core i7-8705G that doesn’t have an ordinary integrated graphics card.

Instead, the engineers from Intel and AMD have made historical cooperation in merging the Radeon RX Vega M GL with this processor.

You can check the prices and configurations in our Specs System: https://laptopmedia.com/series/acer-aspire-7-a715-73g/

Contents


Specs Sheet

Acer Aspire 7 A715-73G – Specs


HDD/SSD

up to
512GB SSD + up to 1000GB HDD


OS


Windows 10 Home, No OS, Linux, Windows 10


Dimensions


358 x 248 x 16.9 mm (14.09″ x 9.76″ x 0.67″)

Ports and connectivity

  • 1x USB Type-C 3.0 (3.1 Gen 1)
  • 2x USB Type-A 3.0 (3.1 Gen 1)
  • 1x USB Type-A 2.0
  • HDMI
  • Card reader SD, SDHC, SDXC
  • Ethernet LAN
  • Wi-Fi 802.11ac
  • Audio jack combo audio / microphone jack

Features

  • Fingerprint reader
  • Web camera
  • Backlit keyboard
  • Speakers
  • Optical drive
  • Security Lock slot

What’s in the box?

When we opened the packaging of this laptop we saw nothing more than the laptop itself, a 90W power adapter and some paper manuals and guides.

Design and construction

Let’s start by saying that this laptop is extremely lightweight. It tops the scales at 1.50 kg and has a 16.9 mm profile. As the numbers never lie, we can conclude that the Aspire 7 (A715-73G) is both thinner and lighter than the ASUS ZenBook 15 UX534. It achieves that weight with a combination of aluminum and magnesium alloy.

On the downside, this notebook doesn’t feel like the strongest out there. The main areas that this notebook lacks strength in are the lid, which bends quite easily, as well as the base of the device. Despite the toughness when twisted, the laptop’s base bends quite much. Especially at the area around the touchpad and below the keyboard. Thankfully, though, you would be able to open the lid with a single hand, should you have a cup of coffee or a beer in the other one.

While the keyboard itself has a good enough layout, it lacks a NumberPad, which can be your best friend if you work with… numbers. Furthermore, the keyboard needs getting used to as we made a good amount of typos when we tried using it for work. With that said, it has good travel and clicky feedback, which leaves the spacing between the keys as the only issue.

Then, there is the touchpad, which has a decent useful area. It is not as wide as the one on the MSI PS63 Modern and features nothing revolutionary like the ZenBook 15 UX534, but it certainly does the job.

In terms of ventilation, the Aspire 7 (A715-73G) has its intake grills on the bottom and exhausts the air from the back of the laptop. This ensures that the heat is drawn away from the device, rather than being clumped in between the base and the display, as is the case with the PS63 Modern.

Ports

On the left, there is the tiny power plug, followed by an HDMI connector, two USB Type-A 3.1 (Gen. 1) ports, a USB Type-C 3.1 (Gen. 1) port and an audio jack, while on the right you can see a USB Type-A port and an SD card reader.

Disassembly, upgrade options and maintenance

The Aspire 7 (A715-73G) requires the removal of the entire bottom panel to get inside of it. This, of course, happens without a lot of effort. You just need to take away 11 Torx-head screws and pop the bottom panel with a plastic tool.

Once you are inside, you are going to see a very familiar picture. This is for the fact, that Acer Aspire 7 (A715-73G) and the ConceptD 5 (CN515-51) are based on the same chassis. This laptop features the quite unusual Core i7-8705G processor, which houses the Radeon RX Vega M GL. Hence, there is a cooling that is beefier than what processor with integrated graphics usually gets. It consists of two heat pipes, a rather long heat sink, and two fans.

In terms of upgradability, the Aspire 7 (A715-73G) is a little disappointing. All of its memory is soldered to the motherboard and there aren’t any RAM DIMMs, whatsoever. On the bright side, there are two M.2 slots that support NVMe drives.

Lastly, we have a 48Wh battery pack, which is not really on par with some of its competition.

Display quality

Coming soon!

Drivers

All of the drivers and utilities for this notebook can be found here: https://www.acer.com/ac/en/US/content/support-product/7958?b=1

Battery

Now, we conduct the battery tests with Windows Better performance setting turned on, screen brightness adjusted to 120 nits and all other programs turned off except for the one we are testing the notebook with. This device is equipped with a 48Wh battery pack.

This was able to deliver more than 9 hours of Web browsing and around 8 hours of video playback, which should be fine for an entire workday only on battery power.

CPU options

This device comes with either the Core i5-8305G or the Core i7-8705G.


GPU options

Thankfully, both of them are equipped with the AMD Radeon RX Vega M GL integrated graphics card. You may also find it by the name Vega 870, and it features 4GB of HBM2 memory.


Gaming tests

rise-of-the-tomb-raider

Temperatures and comfort

Max CPU load

In this test we use 100% on the CPU cores, monitoring their frequencies and chip temperature. The first column shows a computer’s reaction to a short load (2-10 seconds), the second column simulates a serious task (between 15 and 30 seconds), and the third column is a good indicator of how good the laptop is for long loads such as video rendering.

Average core frequency (base frequency + X); CPU temp.

Intel Core i7-8705G (65W TDP) 0:02 – 0:10 sec 0:15 – 0:30 sec 10:00 – 15:00 min
Acer Aspire 7 (A715-73G) 3.49 GHz @ 91°C 3.41 GHz @ 95°C 3.05 GHz @ 95°C
Acer ConceptD 5 (CN515-51) 2.76 GHz @ 95°C 2.70 GHz @ 95°C 2.57 GHz @ 95°C

Well, well, well. Another Acer mystery has been observed. We have two identical laptops, with absolutely the same processors and cooling solutions and yet, one of them managed to work at 500-600 MHz more, at the same temperature. Yes, the Aspire 7 (A715-73G) was a little louder, but most of the efficiency must come from different thermal compound or voltage.

Real-life gaming

AMD Radeon RX Vega M GL GPU frequency/ Core temp (after 2 min) GPU frequency/ Core temp (after 30 min)
Acer Aspire 7 (A715-73G) 908 MHz @ 64°C 903 MHz @ 65°C
Acer ConceptD 5 (CN515-51) 910 MHz @ 58°C 907 MHz @ 58°C

On the other side, the temperatures in the GPU test were higher with the Aspire 7 (A715-73G). Interesting…

Verdict

This laptop is a great device for people that enjoy light gaming from time to time, or need powerful hardware for work, but need it to be in an ultrabook disguise. It can be directly compared to the ASUS ZenBook 14 UX534 and the MSI PS63 Modern, although, the Aspire 7 lacks the innovation of the former, but has more powerful hardware than the latter.

Starting with the downsides of this notebook, we must note that while it is one of the lightest and thinnest 15-incher for the performance it offers, the Aspire 7 (A715-73G) is perhaps too thin. Its body is not the strongest on the market and is susceptible to bends – both on the top and at the base. Additionally, you won’t be able to upgrade the memory on this device, as all of the RAM is soldered, and there is no Thunderbolt port anywhere to find.

Given the fact that it has no RAM upgrades possible, there should be something that shies it away, shouldn’t it? This feature is the dual M.2 drive support. Moreover, we were happy with the battery life, although the 48Wh battery capacity is not the greatest on the market. We were able to get around 9 hours of Web browsing and 8 hours of video playback, which is great stuff for work.

Now, performance-wise, the notebook has its pros and cons. CPU-wise the Core i7-8705G performs more like the Core i5-8300H and 9300H, rather than e full-blown Core i7-8750H/9750H. This is because of the quad-core set-up in comparison to the hexa-core one on the Core i7 H-series. In terms of the GPU power, the Radeon RX Vega M GL is somewhere in the ballpark of a GTX 1050, which itself is less productive than the GTX 1650 Max-Q on the ZenBook 15 UX534.

Nevertheless, these devices have a lot in common, especially in the entire quest of battling tight spaces and placing efficient enough cooling solutions without making the overall weight too big.

Pros

  • Super thin and light body
  • Good performance for the size
  • Dual M.2 PCIe SSD support
  • Decent battery life

Cons

  • There is some noticeable flex in the body
  • No RAM upgrade is possible
  • Lacks Thunderbolt connection

You can check the prices and configurations in our Specs System: https://laptopmedia.com/series/acer-aspire-7-a715-73g/





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