Acer’s Nitro 5 gaming laptop has never been much of a technical or design showcase, but that’s changing a bit for 2021. It now has a slightly toned-down look that moves all of the red details (aside from the red backlit keyboard) to the rear part of the hinge. What’s more impressive, though, is that it’s getting big upgrades in the graphics, processing, and display departments.
For CES 2021, Acer announced that a 15.6-inch and 17-inch version of the Nitro 5 will release with support for the latest Intel 11th Gen Core H35-series processors or AMD’s Ryzen 5000-series CPUs (up to the Ryzen 9 5900 HX). They’ll all have the option to upgrade all the way up to Nvidia’s RTX 3080 graphics chip either route you take with the processor.
In terms of display quality, either size of the Nitro 5 can be configured with a 1440p display with a fast 165Hz refresh rate or a 1080p screen with a 360Hz refresh rate. If you get the Intel version with an 11th Gen CPU, the Nitro 5 will support Thunderbolt 4.
You won’t have many options on launch day in February, though. In the US, Acer is starting with a single variant for $749.99 that has a 15.6-inch IPS display with a 60Hz refresh rate, the AMD Ryzen 5 5600H processor, Nvidia’s GTX 1650 graphics chip, 8GB of RAM, and a 256GB NVMe SSD. It’s $100 more if you want the 17-inch version. There will also be models of the Nitro 5 available with 10th Gen Intel processors ahead of those built with 11th Gen processors.
Acer hasn’t shared official US pricing for other configurations, but it did mention that models coming to other regions with AMD Radeon R7 graphics or the RTX 3060, with a 512GB NVMe SSD added in will cost €1,299. We’ll have to wait to see what the final price ends up being for the Nitro 5 with 11th Gen Intel processors and Nvidia’s high-end RTX 3080.
No matter which variant you might be interested in, Acer shared that each variant is user serviceable for memory and storage. By taking off the bottom cover of the Nitro 5, you’ll find support for two NVMe SSDs and one 2.5-inch SATA SSD (totaling three slots for expandable storage) and up to 32GB of RAM. Acer’s using Intel Wi-Fi 6 chips for all models, along with Killer-branded Ethernet.