Performance and Benchmarks
The Acer Aspire 1830T boasts an Intel Core i7-680 1.46GHz ultra low voltage processor with Intel Turbo Boost Technology running at speeds of up to 2.53GHz. Translation: Although this thin and light notebook looks like a netbook it is MUCH more powerful than a $350 netbook.
In fact, at the time of this writing (November 2010) the Acer Aspire 1830T-68U118 offers the fastest processor of any 11-inch notebook we've reviewed. Still, it's only natural to expect a high level of performance considering the $900 price tag for this configuration. On that note, it's worth mentioning that the Aspire 1830T was roughly twice as fast as the new 11.6-inch Apple MacBook Air ($999) while running our synthetic performance benchmark of wPrime for testing the computational speed of the CPU. General system performance is likewise significantly faster than a single-core or dual-core Atom netbook with no noticeable lag in a Windows environment.
The 500GB 5400rpm hard drive is fast enough to quickly load most basic applications like Microsoft Office or Adobe Photoshop but if you're regularly opening massive files like high-resolution images or HD video files then you may want to upgrade to a 7200rpm hard drive or a high-performance SSD. Still, the 500GB storage capacity should be more than enough for most consumers looking to store their family photos and music library.
The only obvious weak point in the Aspire's armor is the low-performance Intel HD integrated graphics. Yes, the Intel GPU delivers smooth HD video playback (much better than what you get from a cheap netbook). Yes, support for Microsoft DirectX 10 games means you get better-than-netbook gaming performance. Nevertheless, the Acer Aspire 1830T delivers only a fraction of the gaming capabilities of notebooks like the Alienware M11x ($799) or the previously mentioned 11-inch Apple MacBook Air.
In short, the Aspire 1830T is absolutely fantastic for general use but falls horribly short in terms of gaming for a $900 notebook.
wPrime processor comparison results (lower scores mean better performance):
PCMark05 measures overall system performance (higher scores mean better performance):
PCMark Vantage measures overall system performance (higher scores mean better performance):
3DMark06 measures gaming performance (higher scores mean better performance):
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