The world is aiming at minimalism, everyone wants slimmer, lighter, and more compact devices. Actually… it’s not everyone – some people still prefer notebooks with bigger screens because they don’t need their devices outside of their homes – these laptops “travel” from room to room and that’s all.
Sometimes maybe you can take them with you when you’re on vacation – from the table to the backpack, and after that in your car’s trunk. The 17-inchers aren’t very good in terms of portability and there isn’t anything bad about it – if you need a big screen laptop that’s (almost) the only possible solution for you.
These big notebooks still have a decent market share because it’s a pleasure to watch some entertaining content on a big screen – yeah, your 14″ slim laptop is great for outside usage but if you want to watch a movie with subtitles it’ll be a pain in the eyes. Not to mention that if you’re a gamer it’s such a joy to play games on a 17.3″ display instead of a smaller one.
No matter the game – shooters, racing games, RTS’, MMOs, everything looks good when it’s on a bigger screen. If you don’t play games and you just browse the Web and maybe you are editing some MS Office files – the larger screen will ease your work – browsing is easier when you have more screen space. The same goes for office work – if you have to use your device for long typing sessions the extra added screen inches is always a welcomed feature.
That’s why we are going to show you an unpretentious but still good-enough device – the Acer Aspire 3 (A317-51G). This one has a big TN screen, a Comet Lake processor, and a dedicated video card as well. There is an IPS option with 1080p resolution too and our advice is to stick to this one – it has a higher resolution and much better color reproduction – that makes the whole experience much better.
You can check the prices and configurations in our Specs System: https://laptopmedia.com/series/acer-aspire-3-a317-51-a317-51g/
Acer Aspire 3 (A317-51 / A317-51G) - Specs
All Acer Aspire 3 (A317-51 / A317-51G) configurations
What’s in the box?
The packaging includes a 45W power supply, the laptop itself which is inside of a white cloth that protects the machine, and there is a manual too.
Design and construction
That is a budget device and it’s not a surprise that it has an all-plastic build. The body isn’t among the strongest but it’s fine because the whole build feels somehow sturdy – excluding the upper part of the lid. Some words about the weigh and thickness – 2.80kg and 24.6mm profile. Well, it’s not too bad for a 17’3″ device, of course, there are slimmer and lighter all-aluminum laptops with the same screen size but they are much more expensive.
You can’t open the lid with a single hand, sadly, but it is what it is. The good news is that while you’re opening the lid there are no bends during the whole process. Well, that’s if you don’t twist it on purpose, of course. The problem is the backside of the lid – it will be better not to use any force on it when you close it because it’ll flex badly (yes, don’t use it as a stand for something else like your gaming console, as it’s just a plastic device). Also, the thick bezels around the display look so dated in 2020.
The keyboard of the laptop is the same as the one that is being used in the 15″ version. It’s too small for a big notebook like this one – there is so much unused space around the keyboard deck and it looks a bit weird – as it’s the case with any big laptop with a small keyboard. There is a NumberPad section which is good (for example, if you’re an accountant) but unfortunately, its keys are even smaller than the character ones. If you love to play racing games you will not like the fact the the “Up” and “Down” arrow keys are half-sized and they are very close to each other.
The key travel is fine (not the best) and there is a good “click” as well. The touchpad is definitely a good one – it’s fast and accurate, maybe its texture is a bit too glossy for our liking but it’s nothing serious.
When you type on, the whole structure of the keyboard stays strong, but if you apply more force, ergo, you type harshly, there are some flexes here and there – especially in the area between the “Space” key and the touchpad, which isn’t that resistive.
The base of the device is stable, you can hold it sideways with one hand and there are no bends or squeaky sounds. On the bottom side, you’ll find the speakers and the ventilation grill.
Typically for a budget machine, you’ll get almost essential ports only. On the left side, we can find a power plug, then an RJ-45 connector, an HDMI connector, two USB Type-A ports (one 2.0 and one 3.1 (Gen. 1) and an audio jack. On the right side, there is an optical drive bay and a second USB Type-A 2.0 port. It’s not a common feature these days but if you need a DVD writer you can configure your device with it.
The display of Acer Aspire 3 (A317-51G) is an HD+ TN panel with a model number AUO B173RTN02.2 (AUO229E). It’s a 17.3″ display, and it has 1600 x 900 resolution (with an aspect ratio of 16:9). The pixel density is 106 ppi, with a 0.239 x 0.239 mm pitch. The screen can be considered as “Retina” when viewed from a distance beyond 80 cm.
Acer Aspire 3 (A317-32) has uncomfortable viewing angles. You can check the quality with the provided images below.
The maximum brightness that we measured is 244 nits in the center of the screen and 224 nits average for the whole surface, and a maximum deviation of 14%. The color temperature of the display is 6600K (white screen and maximum brightness) – almost matching the sRGB standard of 6500K. The average color temperature, measured on the grey scale before calibration is 12000K (cold, bluish light, fixed by our profiles).
In the illustration below you can see how the display performs around 140 cd/m2, which translates into 56% brightness with this panel. The dE2000 values should not pass the 4.0 mark, and if the color accuracy is of big importance to you (multimedia creator), this is the first thing you should check before you buy a device.
The contrast ratio we measured is low – 360:1 (350:1 after profiling).
The next image shows the sRGB coverage of Acer Aspire 3 (A317-51G)’s display. The color reproduction of the human eye is shown via the “CIE 1976 Uniform Chromaticity Diagram”. In the middle of the dark-grey triangle are located the standard colors used by the Internet and digital TV – rec.709/sRGB.
Being used by millions of people around the world the colors from the sRGB gamut are the most common and their accurate reproduction is of key importance for the quality of the screen.
In addition to the Adobe RGB color space, used in the professional photography, we’ve included the color gamut, used by world-known movie studios – DCI-P3, and UHD-digital television (Rec.2020), which is very hard to achieve by modern display units.
We have drawn the Pointer’s Gamut with a black line. This color space covers all the colors we can see around us.
Acer Aspire 3 (A317-51G) coverage is shown by the yellow pointed line. It’s display has 63% of sRGB/ITU-R BT.709 (web/HDTV standard) in CIE1976.
Our “Gaming and Web design” profile is designed to show optimal color temperature (6500K) when the luminance is at 140 cd/m2 and sRGB gamma.
In order to test the display, we used 24 color samples, consisting of common founded and easy distinguishable ones like light and dark human skin, blue sky, grassy green and orange.
Beneath you can compare the results of Acer Aspire 3 (A317-51G) with the default settings, and with the “Gaming and Web design” profile.
The next chart shows us the capabilities of comfortable gaming experience in terms of the darkest parts of the image.
The left side tells us the default settings results of the screen, and the right one shows us the results with “Gaming and Web design” profile installed. The horizontal gives us the levels of grey, and the vertical one – the screen brightness.
You can check how your device displays the first five levels of grey – 1% – 5% White – via the graphics below the charts. The image you see depends on several factors such as the panel of the display you’re currently reading this article on, it’s calibration, your vision, ambient light, viewing angle and more.
Response Time (Gaming capabilities)
The chart below illustrates the response time of the pixels going from Black to White and around for levels of 10% to 90% and vice versa. We measured Fall Time + Rise Time = 12 ms
PWM (Screen flickering)
Pulse-width modulation (PWM) is an easy way to control monitor brightness. When you lower the brightness, the light intensity of the backlight is not lowered, but instead turned off and on by the electronics with a frequency indistinguishable to the human eye. In these light impulses, the light/no-light time ratio varies, while brightness remains unchanged, which is harmful to your eyes. You can read more about that in our dedicated article on PWM.
The screen brightness of Acer Aspire 3 (A317-51G) is not PW-modulated throughout all of the levels, giving comfort to the eyes in this aspect.
Blue light emissions
Installing our Health-Guard profile not only eliminates PWM but also reduces the harmful Blue Light emissions while keeping the colors of the screen perceptually accurate. If you’re not familiar with the Blue light, the TL;DR version is – emissions that negatively affect your eyes, skin and your whole body. You can find more information about that in our dedicated article on Blue Light.
Acer Aspire 3 (A317-51G)’s display in our modification has a budget TN panel. It has fast response time, lacks PWM and our profiles give it incredibly accurate colors. However, the poor viewing angles and mediocre contrast ratio make it not very comfortable and enjoyable to look at.
Buy our display profiles
Since our profiles are tailored for each individual display model, this article and its respective profile package are meant for Acer Aspire 3 (A317-51G) configurations with 17.3″ AUO B173RTN02.2 (AUO229E) (HD+, 1600 × 900) TN screen.
*Should you have problems with downloading the purchased file, try using a different browser to open the link you’ll receive via e-mail. If the download target is a .php file instead of an archive, change the file extension to .zip or contact us at [email protected]
Read more about the profiles HERE.
In addition to receiving efficient and health-friendly profiles, by buying LaptopMedia's products you also support the development of our labs, where we test devices in order to produce the most objective reviews possible.
Office Work should be used mostly by users who spend most of the time looking at pieces of text, tables or just surfing. This profile aims to deliver better distinctness and clarity by keeping a flat gamma curve (2.20), native color temperature and perceptually accurate colors.
Design and Gaming
This profile is aimed at designers who work with colors professionally, and for games and movies as well. Design and Gaming takes display panels to their limits, making them as accurate as possible in the sRGB IEC61966-2-1 standard for Web and HDTV, at white point D65.
Health-Guard eliminates the harmful Pulse-Width Modulation (PWM) and reduces the negative Blue Light which affects our eyes and body. Since it’s custom tailored for every panel, it manages to keep the colors perceptually accurate. Health-Guard simulates paper so the pressure on the eyes is greatly reduced.
Acer Aspire 3 (A317-51G)’s speakers produce a crisp sound with good quality. Its low, mid and high tones are clear of deviations.
All of the drivers and utilities for this notebook can be found here: https://www.acer.com/ac/en/US/content/support-product/8032?b=1
Our Acer Aspire 3 (A317-51G) comes with a Western Digital PC SN520 NVMe SSD. It reaches transfer speeds of 1.74 GB/s Read and 1.45 GB/s Write. Those are decent numbers but they are not high as the Samsung PM981 ones. In terms of latency, this Western Digital NVMe SSD is an average performer.
|SSD model (480-512GB variants)||Max.Seq.Read (GB/s)||Max.Seq.Write (GB/s)||IOPS 4K Read||IOPS 4K Write||Latency Read (ms)||Latency Write (ms)|
|WDC PC SN520 SDA||1.74||1.45||11197||31783||0.116||0.030|
|Intel Pro 6000p Series||1.83||0.59||7792||28266||0.075||0.033|
|Toshiba XG5 KXG50ZNV512G||3.13||0.46||8425||29661||0.055||0.046|
CrystalDiskMark – Max.Seq.Read/Write; AS SSD – IOPS 4K Read/Write, Latency Read/Write
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.
We got around 6 hours and a half of Web browsing and 5 hours and a half of video playback.
In order to simulate real-life conditions, we used our own script for automatic web browsing through over 70 websites.
For every test like this, we use the same video in HD.
The Acer Aspire 3 (A317-51G) can be configured with a decent variety of 10th gen Intel Comet Lake processors. Our test device comes with Intel Core-i5 10210U.
Results are from the Cinebench 20 CPU test (the higher the score, the better)
Results are from the Fritz chess benchmark (the higher the score, the better)
Results are from our Photoshop benchmark test (the lower the score, the better)
As for the graphics cards, you can rely on some integrated solutions like the Intel UHD Graphics and you can go up to NVIDIA GeForce MX250 if you need more graphics power. Our device is configured with NVIDIA MX230 which is a decent GPU too.
Results are from the 3DMark: Fire Strike (Graphics) benchmark (higher the score, the better)
Results are from the Unigine Heaven 3.0 benchmark (higher the score, the better)
Results are from the Unigine Heaven 4.0 benchmark (higher the score, the better)
Results are from the Unigine Superposition benchmark (higher the score, the better)
|CS:GO||Full HD, Low (Check settings)||Full HD, Medium (Check settings)||Full HD, MAX (Check settings)|
|Average FPS||119 fps||102 fps||77 fps|
|TC Rainbow Six Siege||Full HD, Medium (Check settings)||Full HD, High (Check settings)||Full HD, Very High (Check settings)|
|Average FPS||41 fps||34 fps||27 fps|
|Rise of the Tomb Raider (2016)||Full HD, Lowest (Check settings)||Full HD, Medium (Check settings)||Full HD, Very High (Check settings)|
|Average FPS||35 fps||23 fps||– fps|
|Tom Clancy’s Ghost Recon Wildlands||Full HD, Medium (Check settings)||Full HD, High (Check settings)||Full HD, Very High (Check settings)|
|Average FPS||17 fps||14 fps||– fps|
|Shadow of the Tomb Raider (2018)||Full HD, Lowest (Check settings)||Full HD, Medium (Check settings)||Full HD, High (Check settings)|
|Average FPS||22 fps||12 fps||– fps|
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 i5-10210U (15W TDP)||0:02 – 0:10 sec||0:15 – 0:30 sec||10:00 – 15:00 min|
|Acer Aspire 3 (A317-51G)||3.37 GHz (B+111%) @ 84°C||1.89 GHz (B+18%) @ 64°C||1.90 GHz (B+19%) @ 65°C|
|Lenovo ThinkBook 15-IML||3.08 GHz (B+93%) @ 73°C||3.00 GHz (B+88%) @ 82°C||2.55 GHz (B+59%) @ 80°C|
|Lenovo ThinkPad L13||3.04 GHz (B+90%) @ 97°C||2.10 GHz (B+31%) @ 97°C||2.12 GHz (B+33%) @ 79°C|
|Dell Inspiron 14 5491 2-in-1||3.45 GHz (B+116%) @ 94°C||2.33 GHz (B+46%) @ 86°C||2.00 GHz (B+25%) @ 74°C|
|ASUS ZenBook Duo UX481||3.26 GHz (B+104%) @ 94°C||2.77 GHz (B+73%) @ 98°C||2.06 GHz (B+29%) @ 71°C|
|Lenovo Yoga C640 (13)||2.87 GHz (B+79%) @ 73°C||2.89 GHz (B+81%) @ 85°C||2.23 GHz (B+39%) @ 87°C|
|Dell Vostro 5590||3.50 GHz (B+119%) @ 94°C||2.68 GHz (B+68%) @ 97°C||2.36 GHz (B+48%) @ 79°C|
|Lenovo Yoga C740 (14)||3.09 GHz (B+93%) @ 96°C||2.66 GHz (B+66%) @ 97°C||1.96 GHz (B+23%) @ 71°C|
For a cooling solution with a single fan, the final results aren’t that bad. For a long periods of stress testing the CPU remains really cool (65°C) but the CPU clock is just 1.90GHz which is close to the results of Lenovo Yoga C740 (1.96GHz) and Dell Inspiron 14 5491 2-in-1 (2.00GHz). Still, this is the coolest Core i5-10210U in our table.
Let’s start again with the size of this thing – a big laptop with a big 17.3″ screen. This is a good desktop replacement especially if you need it for games and movies. If you want to play a couple of rounds of CS:GO after work, well, this fella will definitely do the job.
Battery life is average at its best. We were able to squeeze a bit over 6 hours of Web browsing and 5 hours and a half of video playback. Sure, you can use it away from the charger for some time but if you need a device with longer battery life there are better notebooks in this category.
If you simply want an affordable desktop replacement, yes, this laptop is a good choice that will not stretch your wallet too much. We can explain to you why this one is a good choice for your desk. Let’s start with screen – a big 17.3″ TN panel that has accurate colors thanks to our profiles and it’s PWM-free. The latter is very important for your health so it’s a must-have feature if you plan to use the device for long hours of gaming or Web browsing. The monitor will enhance your experience while you’re gaming or watching movies because of its good color reproduction (with our profiles). Sadly, you can’t lay back on your chair without caring about the viewing angles because this TN panel has really bad ones – you can’t enjoy your favorite content when you aren’t in front of the monitor (unlike the IPS panels). Its sRGB color coverage is mediocre – only 63%.
The overall performance of Acer Aspire 3 (A317-51G) is decent. Sure, there are better performers with the same hardware out there but they’ll cost more (at least most of them). Our test device has a short boot time – it takes a couple of seconds to view your desktop after starting the devices. The fast NVMe drive helps for faster load times in every game, program, or whatever you’re using – it’ll load it fast. The CPU / GPU combo – Intel Core i5-10210U and NVIDIA GeForce MX230 perform well in most games (which are not AAA titles) at Low-to-Medium settings. The device feels snappy all the time, there are no hiccups, no stutter, no freezes – everything runs smoothly. If you want better multitasking or you just want more FPS in the newest gaming titles we can highly recommend adding at least 4GB of RAM over the base amount of system memory when you are configuring your device.
Well, the build quality isn’t the best. As we already informed you, the laptop has an all-plastic build, the backside of the lid can bend easily, and if you type harshly there are some flexes around the keyboard deck.
Interestingly enough, the cooling performance of the device is ok considering the fact that there is just a single fan for the CPU and the GPU. The temperatures during load are under control and the upper part of the shell remains cool-enough so that means that you can use the device under heavy stress without sensing a big amount of heat beneath your fingers. The fan produces a moderate amount of noise during gaming and its silent when there is a CPU load only.
This is a reasonably priced notebook with a large 17.3″ screen, it has decent performance and a fast NVMe drive. Maybe you can forget about the cheap-ish build quality when you start actually using it.
- Low price tag
- Large screen that has accurate colors with our “Gaming and Web design” profile
- Decent overall performance
- Doesn’t use PWM for brightness adjustment
- Has an NVMe drive and other good upgrade options
- All-plastic build
- The cooling solution could be better and quieter
- One RAM stick is directly soldered to the motherboard
- Lacks USB Type-C and SD card reader
- TN panel with mediocre sRGB color coverage
You can check the prices and configurations in our Specs System: https://laptopmedia.com/series/acer-aspire-3-a317-51-a317-51g/