Summary: When Acer introduced the Aspire S5 ultrabook at CES in January , it did so to considerable fanfare. The company said it was the thinnest ultrabook yet, and that it didn't cut corners to get there: the S5 has a Thunderbolt port (good luck finding one on another ultrabook), a huge 256GB SSD, and a bizarre ports panel called MagicFlip. Thin, light, fast, and Thunderbolt sounded like a gang not to be trifled with.
Conclusion: First, I have to address the storage system in the S5. A single 256GB solid state drive would have been just fine with me but Acer went above and beyond with a RAID0 system consisting of two 128GB Lite-On SSDs. Sure, two storage drives increases risk, but for me, it’s worth the reward as this is by far the fastest storage system I've encountered in a notebook. In fact, the only desktop setup I've tested that's faster is OCZ's RevoDrive X3 PCIe SSD.
Conclusion: We love the looks and the build quality. The Acer Aspire S5 not only looks and feels like a premium product, it's extremely thin and light too. Yet the Ultrabook doesn't feel flimsy and we'd trust it on the road. The MagicFlip is an interesting design element, but it's more for show and the the motorized door seems like one more thing to worry about breaking.
Pros: Gorgeous design, very slim and light, has a Thunderbolt port.
Cons: Mediocre TN display with narrow viewing angles, fan is a bit noisy.
Conclusion: 1500 Euros (~$1927) for a 1200 g notebook: the price of the Acer Aspire S5 is high-end, but does this apply to the quality as well? Compared to the cheaper Aspire S3 we notice significant progress in many places: instead of the plastic we have stable and high-quality light metals , which we already know from other rivals. Thanks to the clever, retractable interface construction , the ultrabook is among the thinnest devices.
Pros: Very light and stable housing, High performance, Extremely fast SSD combination, Proper input devices, Thunderbolt port, Long battery life, Light, strong, and very thin: Acer has done well in terms of the case. This is possible among other things thanks to the Flip I/O feature, with which the manufacturer has demonstrated innovation.
Cons: Reflective and qualitatively disappointing display, Moderate Turbo Boost utilization, Noisy under load, No UMTS/LTE or LAN, Limited maintenance capabilities, Very high price
Excerpt: There’s no point beginning a review of the Acer Aspire S5 with a discussion of anything other than its approach to ports. Look at the sides and back of the S5 and you’ll find almost none: An SD card slot, headphone jack, and power port are the only visible connectors to the outside world. This isn’t some radical approach to cutting the cord, but rather the most audacious way of hiding connectors that I’ve seen in over a decade of reviewing laptops.
Pros: Best ultrabook performance money can buy. Solid audio (courtesy Dolby). Double the storage versus most SSD-equipped ultrabooks.
Cons: Loud, grinding fan. Small keys, too widely spaced. Arrow keys are so diminutive they’re nearly unusuable. Two USB ports isn’t enough.
Summary: Après l'Aspire S3 , premier ultrabook du marché, Acer profite de l'arrivée des processeurs Ivy Bridge d'Intel pour renouveler sa gamme. Quelques jours seulement après Asus et son UX31A , voici donc annoncé l'Aspire S5. Un ultrabooks qui n'a finalement pas grand-chose à voir avec le S3 et qui cache en son sein quelques originalités, comme un port Thunderbolt et un RAID 0 de deux SSD !
Pros: Perfomances / RAID 0, Finesse et légèreté, Port Thunderbolt
Cons: Écran très moyen, Finition / fabrication en retrait, Prix trop élevé