Acer is launching a new line of laptops aimed at creative professionals this summer. It’s called ConceptD, and the concept came together after Acer realized that a lot of people who were buying the company’s gaming PCs were using them for non-gaming activities including image and video editing.
In fact, Acer says that 15 percent of the customers who buy its gaming computers aren’t using them for gaming at all, while 50 percent of hardcore gamers are also using them for content creation.
So the Acer ConceptD line of computers pack the sort of high-performance hardware you’d expect to see in gaming laptops and desktops, but add features like low-noise fans, more professional looking bodies, and features like pen support — in fact the weirdest device in the lineup is the ConceptD 9 which has an easel-like design that allows the screen to fold out over the keyboard while you work with a pen.
But the most Liliputing-friendly model is probably the ConceptD 5, so let’s start our tour with that laptop.
The Acer ConceptD 5 is a 3.3 pound notebook that measures 0.7 inches thick and has a 15.6 inch, 3480 x 2160 pixel matte display. The screen is Pantone validated, supports 100 percent Adobe RGB color gamut, and up to 400 nits of brightness.
Under the hood, the computer is powered by an Intel Kaby Lake-G processor, which combines an 8th-gen Intel Core CPU with AMD Radeon Vega graphics: Acer will offer Core i5-8305G or Core i7-8705G processor options.
While the Kaby Lake-G chips are about a year old at this point, there aren’t a lot of computers on the market that use these processors, so it’s interesting to see a new laptop with the chips… even if the ConceptD 5 is the least powerful computer in the new ConceptD family.
The good news is that with a starting price of $1700, it’s also the cheapest product in the family.
The computer supports up to 16GB of dual-channel DDR4 memory, up to 1TB of PCIe NVMe solid state storage, and features USB Type-C, USB 3.1 Type-A, HDMI, and SD card ports.
If you’re looking for something that packs a bit more power, the Acer ConceptD 7 has a similar display, but it’s available with up to a 9th-gen Intel Core i7 processor and NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q graphics. It supports up to 32GB of RAM and has two SODIMM slots as well as a Thunderbolt 3 port.
It’s also about a millimeter thicker, and more than a pound heavier, at 4.6 pounds. And this model costs more, with a starting price of $2300.
Acer’s ConceptD 9 is technically a laptop in that it has a battery that lets you take it with you and use anywhere. But it’s a 9 pound laptop with a 17.3 inch display, so it’s kind of in a different category than its smaller siblings listed above.
It is also really pretty cool. The computer has a 4K display that you can use in laptop mode. But you can also pull the screen forward to use as an easel, making the computer feel a bit like a semi-portable Microsoft Surface Studio.
The PC features a 9th-gen Intel Core i9 processor, NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 graphics, up to 32GB of RAM, up to 1TB of storage, quad speakers, Thunderbolt 3, HDMI 2.0, DisplayPort 1.4, and USB 3.1 Gen1.
The ConceptD 9 comes with a Wacom EMR stylus that supports 4096 levels of pressure sensitivity.
Now for the bad news — this thing ain’t cheap. Acer says the ConceptD D9 will be available in June for $5000 and up.
Acer’s ConceptD lineup also includes the ConceptD 500 desktop PC which is coming in June for $1700 and the ConceptD 900 desktop which will launch in May for a crazy $20,000.
There are also a few new professional monitors coming this summer for $2000 and up.
Powerful hardware without the obnoxious RGB “LOOK AT ME I’M A GAMER” aesthetic?
Sign me up.
Good job Acer.
Acer previously had a laptop similar to the ConceptD 9, the Aspire R13:
I had one. The screen was terrible.
Before that, even, they had the Aspire R7, with active digitizer and optional discrete graphics. I still have my R7, though sadly without a dGPU. It’s got the unusual configuration of having the trackpad above the keyboard, so that in easel mode, the keyboard isn’t covered, just like with this new model.
I’ve noticed that every time I see some Acer hardware I might like, I look up reviews for it and when the screens are tested by someone who actually knows what they’re doing (i.e. not just going by eye and calling it a ‘review’), they always get poor marks.
It’s a shame really because Acer often have very cool designs.
A ConceptD 900 desktop or a Honda Civic? That’s a very hard decision.
ConceptD 900 desktop comes with 60TB RAID storage. Who needs that on the desktop? Professional visual special effects designers whose companies can afford to pay over the top if they really need such a product.
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