The Acer Aspire 7740 is a multimedia notebook comes with a lot of state of the art features. It offers all the latest amenities in computing for a very reasonable price. The notebook comes with an Intel Core i3-330M processor and a 4GB DDR3 RAM. It also includes an Intel GMA HD graphics and a Blu-ray drive. In this article we will take a closer look at this notebook and analyze its various features and aspects.
Acer Aspire 7740 Design
The 17.3 inch notebook has a slim profile; this makes the size appear to be less bulky. The design at the front is minimalistic to create a palmrest with a nice edge. The color of the notebook is very well decided. The screen-cover is a glossy dark blue and the palmrest has a metallic blue color. The keyboard is well trimmed and black in color. The Acer logo is displayed at the front and the center. There is however a lot of open space around the keyboard which could have been filled with multimedia and other functional keys.The build of the laptop is good but it does not provide much flexibility. The LCD screen is protected by a screen-cover from all possible distortions. The screen lid is covered by a glossy paint which prevents it from scratches and makes it handy and capable to endure daily rough usage. The trimmed keyboard and palmrest is smudge-resistant and non-flexible. The chassis is strong enough to hold the body panels of the notebook and provide strong support for daily use. The screen hinges provide strong support to the screen. There is a panel on the back portion of the notebook through which any upgrading such as extending the RAM or attaching a wireless card can be done.
Acer Aspire 7740 Display
The Acer Aspire 7740 is equipped with a HD+ screen having a resolution of 1600 x 900. The high resolution of the screen enables it to support 720p and 1080p video content. Functions like picture contrast and color saturation are average when compared to other notebooks of similar sized screens. The backlight levels are not strong enough to provide a good viewing experience in outdoor locations with the glossy screen adding to the problems. They do however provide for a good display under indoor or office lighting. The maximum brightness level is at the center of the screen measuring up to 248cd/m2. Brightness decreases around the corners and edges to up to 199cd/m2. When the screen is tilted backwards or forwards, the color display remains the same for about 15 degrees. The screen is visible properly from a side view almost until 60 degrees; the reflection on the screen overpowers the backlight.
Acer Aspire 7740 Multimedia
The sound quality of the Aspire 7740 speakers are quite good considering the fact that the system does not have any subwoofer. The speakers also support Dolby surround sound. While we were testing the notebook, we found that the peak volume levels are quite satisfactory while watching a video or a movie sitting in the immediate vicinity of the notebook. Switching on the Dolby Audio Enhancer produced a sound that had a hint of midrange and bass. We were pretty impressed by the overall sound quality considering the fact that the retail price of the notepad was only around $749.
Acer Aspire 7740 Keyboard
The keyboard on the Aspire 7740 notebook can be described as having a floating-island style. One disadvantage of this keyboard is a lack of a solid key design or an internal bezel structure. Due to this, while typing quickly you may frequently find your fingers accidentally hitting another key while you are typing a key as well as trying to move your hand to the next key.
Another important drawback is that this notebook is made essentially for the use of multimedia, yet there is a lack of quick access media keys. The notebook comes with a Blu-ray drive and an adequate sound system but has no proper touch-sensitive buttons for media playback or volume control. However, the notebook is equipped with quick access buttons for certain other functions like Bluetooth, Wi-Fi and software backup.
Acer Aspire 7740 Touchpad
The Aspire 7740 comes with a touchpad with an ALPS design that supports multi-touch functionalities, responds quickly and has an elaborate layout. Touchpad sensitivity is good. However, there are no options to adjust the sensitivity in the ALPS control menu. Some users may find it difficult to type with the touchpad constantly moving the cursor. There is a switch on the right side of the touchpad that switches the touchpad function off.
Acer Aspire 7740 Ports and Features
The Aspire 7740 has four USB ports, a VGA and HDMI-out port, audio input/output jacks including S/PDIF out, LAN port, modem and a Kensington lock slot. The eSATA port for an external hard drive is not available in this model. The Blu-ray drive was quite impressive but it is not accompanied by a Blu-ray decoding software.
Acer Aspire 7740 System Performance
This notebook has a 2.13GHz Intel Core i3-330M processor and 4GB DDR3 RAM with Intel GMA HD graphics support, the combination of which helps to give optimum level of performance on a daily basis. The Toshiba 5400RPM hard drive is a bit slow and is also equipped with a unique power management setting that spent more power than is commonly heard of from other notebooks. The Core i3-330M processor is strong enough to support HD videos and high resolution movies of 720p and 1080p. This notebook is not exactly a gaming–friendly one. Booting and shutdown is quick and satisfactory; however we feel a better and quicker hard drive will be able to perform these functions better.
Acer Aspire 7740 Noise and Heat
Considering the size of the notebook and the average level of hardware it is equipped with, we can safely say that the thermal performance of this machine is quite up to the mark. Under conditions of standard usage, the notebook did not get too heated up and was well within comfortable ranges.
Fan noise is low when the notebook is idle. While handling heavier load, the fan revolved at a higher speed but the noise was still fairly low.
Acer Aspire 7740 Battery Life
The 6-cell battery installed in Aspire 7740 has a capacity of 48Wh. When idle, the notebook uses around 14 to 16 Watts. The system stayed on for around 2 hours and 51 minutes under conditions of low screen brightness, active wireless and Windows profile set to be balanced. So with a battery life just under 3 hours, this notebook is a good replacement for a desktop but is not much suitable to be a proper travel companion.
The Acer Aspire 7740 is an excellent multimedia notebook with great looks and solid performance. It is also very easy on the pockets. Unlike some other affordable notebooks which offer screen resolution of only 1366 x 768, the Aspire 7740 offers a 17.3-inch screen with a resolution of 1600 x 900. It has also received a good score for its system performance in PCMark Vantage. So if you are looking for an affordable system with good multimedia features and nice design, this notebook is worth giving a shot.