Gaming laptops continue to be a bright spot in the PC market, and practically every manufacturer offers some sort of system targeted at gamers. Some of them more successfully target the market than others, offering features that improve gameplay and visuals, and others focus more on what I’ll politely call the “gaming laptop aesthetic” which includes a myriad of multi-colored LEDs, and generally angular design cues. Diving head-first into that subject, today we're taking a look at Acer's gaming-focused Predator Triton 500 laptop. Although Acer has touched on a couple of the aesthetic design choices, they’ve kept it subtle, and still offer all of the accoutrements expected in a premium gaming laptop design.

There are two schools of thought for gaming laptops: either you want to be able to move it around, or you don’t. Acer’s Predator Triton 500 is in the former camp, offering an incredibly powerful system, in a thin and light form factor. Thin and light is of course relative, but true desktop replacement laptops can easily tip the scales over ten pounds, making them transportable, but not really portable. Acer’s Triton 500 offers a much more sleek design in its 15.6-inch frame, and weighs in at 4.64 lbs, meaning it really is a laptop you can easily take on the road.

That thin design doesn’t preclude the Triton 500 from offering the latest high-performance silicon inside either. The Predator Triton 500 comes with the hex-core Intel Core i7-8750H, boasting a boost frequency of 4.1 GHz, and either a NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2060 video card, or the highest performance single video available in a laptop, the GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q. This is the exact same Turing-based TU104 found in the desktop GeForce RTX 2080, just clocked down a bit and binned for power. Acer sent us the top model PT515-51-765U for review, featuring the RTX 2080, 32 GB of RAM, and 1 TB of SSD storage.

One of the biggest changes in gaming laptops over the last couple of years has been the introduction of variable refresh displays, namely G-SYNC, and that has been a tremendous help smoothing out the performance from laptop-class GPUs. The new trend is for higher refresh rates, coupled with G-SYNC, and here Acer delivers. Not only is this 15.6-inch panel a G-SYNC display, but it offers a 144 Hz refresh rate, and rather than move to a twisted nematic (TN) transistor layout, Acer is offering an In-Plane Switching (IPS) display, meaning it still offers the exceptional viewing angles that we’ve become accustomed to on quality laptops.

Acer Predator Triton 500
Component PT515-51-71VV PT515-51-75L8 PT515-51-765U
(Model Reviewed)
CPU Intel Core i7-8750H
6 Core, 12 Thread
2.2 GHz - 4.1 GHz
9MB Cache 45W TDP
GPU NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2060
1920 CUDA Cores, 48 ROPs, 6 GB VRAM
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080
2944 CUDA Cores, 64 ROPs, 8 GB VRAM
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080
2944 CUDA Cores, 64 ROPs, 8 GB VRAM
RAM 16 GB Dual-Channel DDR4
2 SODIMM Slots
32 GB Dual-Channel DDR4
2 SODIMM Slots
Display 15.6-inch 1920x1080 IPS
144 Hz Refresh Rate with G-SYNC
Matte coating, no touch support
Storage 512 GB NVMe PCIe SSD 2 x 512 GB NVMe PCIe SSD in RAID 0 (1TB Logical Drive)
Networking Killer Wireless AC-1550
2x2:2, 160 MHz channel support
MU-MIMO, 1.736 Gbps max connection speed

Killer E300 Gigabit Ethernet
Killer Doubleshot Pro
Audio Stereo Speakers
Waves MaxAudio
Waves Nx
Separate headphone/microphone jacks
Battery 84 Wh
180-Watt AC Adapter
I/O 3 x USB 3.0
1 x USB Type-C Gen 2 w/Thunderbolt 3
HDMI 2.0
mini DisplayPort 1.4
Dimensions 358 x 255 x 17.8 mm
14.11 x 10.04 x 0.7 inches
Weight 2.1 Kg / 4.63 lbs
Extras 1280 x 720 Webcam
No Windows Hello support
Price $1,799.99 $2,499.99 $2999.99
 

Acer powers the networking with Killer’s DoubleShot Pro, which means you can team up Killer’s Gigabit Ethernet with the Killer Wireless-AC 1550 adapter. I’ll dig into this more in the wireless section, but this is one of the gaming laptop choices which target a demographic rather than actual performance.

There’s plenty of I/O available, with three USB 3.0 Type-A ports, and a USB Type-C port which offers Thunderbolt 3 connectivity. For video output, there’s not only DisplayPort but HDMI native, which is a nice touch.

Acer’s Predator Triton is near the top-end of Acer’s Predator product stack, with the good gaming bits inside, but first let’s take a look at the design and build quality.

Design
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  • Ethos Evoss - Saturday, April 27, 2019 - link

    iT IS ABOUT FEATURES NIT JUST CLOCK....MAN
    SUPPORT NEW FEATURES 4k or 8k in 60hz
    3 4k support .. plenty memory new memory
    Reply
  • DanNeely - Thursday, April 25, 2019 - link

    With all the power related limitations with mobile GPUs these days I'd love to see a nominal equivalent desktop system added to the tables as a reference baseline. Reply
  • Oyeve - Thursday, April 25, 2019 - link

    3k laptop. I'll stick with my 17" Lenovo laptop from 3 years ago with a 980m that I got for 900. Plays everything I throw at it very well. Reply
  • MrRuckus - Thursday, April 25, 2019 - link

    You can find diamonds in the rough. I bought a Alienware 17 R5 with a "1070 OC" they call it, and can get it within 10-15% of my friends Asus G703 with an overclocked 1080. That laptop was $3500, mine was $1500 base + 1TB NVMe Evo, and 1TB SSD Evo I added to it coming out around $1800. While I dont care too much for Alienware in general, I knew this chassis could take an i9/1080 combo,so I knew it would handle an i7/1070 easily, which it does with no throttling. With laptops, its all about finding a chassis that can handle the hardware without throttling. Reply
  • Jedi2155 - Thursday, April 25, 2019 - link

    Did you do an iUnlock and liquid metal the R5? I had to do it on my 17R4 but still working great after 2 years of ownership in my backpack. Reply
  • WagonWheelsRX8 - Thursday, April 25, 2019 - link

    Pretty impressive amount of power for a portable device.
    Would love to see a review or 2 sprinkled in of the more middle range laptop hardware, too.
    Reply
  • Gunbuster - Thursday, April 25, 2019 - link

    Good looking laptop until we get to the last page and there is that big old I'm a grown man in the basement messaging a 13 year old predator logo. :p Marketing Acer, Marketing. Research it. Reply
  • MrRuckus - Thursday, April 25, 2019 - link

    This! I dont know why its so hard to find a aesthetically pleasing high end laptop! haha. The MSI GS75 Stealth is an amazing looking laptop, if only it wasn't a Max-Q design! I only wish the screen lid came on the MSI Raider with the full fledged 2080. But no, they want to stamp that with "Dragon scale" LED strips What?? Teenage looks with seriously adult prices. Reply
  • patel21 - Thursday, April 25, 2019 - link

    Gigabyte Aero Reply
  • MrRuckus - Thursday, April 25, 2019 - link

    Ahh, its nice, but would like a full 2080 non Max-Q and a 17inch display. 15inch is just too small for my liking. I have owned a lot of Asus ROG laptops (get a new one every 2 years through my work as my treat to myself). 15 inch laptops even some of the better ones, have issues with throttling. That extra 2 inches of space helps with cooling in the small form factor of a laptop. The GS75 Stealth is a nice looking laptop, but I just cant get over the 30% hit from Max-Q. I would look at another G703 from Asus, but that laptop is now pushing $4k with a 2080. I had the G703 w/1080 before I sold it to a friend due to needing some money due to some unfortunate events, It was a really nice solid laptop, but was really pushing it at $3500. I just cant justify spending over 3500, that was even a stretch. Reply

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