Acer 6920G - Features and Specifications

Acer 6920G (6920-6422) Specifications
Processor Core 2 Duo T9300 (2.50GHz 6MB 800FSB)
Chipset Intel PM965 + ICH8-ME
Memory 2x2048MB DDR2-667
Graphics NVIDIA GeForce 9500GS 512MB
Display 16.0" 1080P (1920x1080) Glossy
Samsung LTN160HT-A02
Hard Drive 250GB 5400RPM 8MB
Western Digital Scorpio WD2500BEVS-22UST0
Optical Drive BD-ROM/DVDR (Optiarc BC-5500A)
Networking Integrated Gigabit Ethernet
Intel 4965AGN WiFi
Bluetooth v2.0
V.92 56K Modem
Audio 2-Channel HD Audio (2.0 Speakers + Tuba CineBass Expander)
Battery 8-Cell 71Whr
Front Side 6-in-1 Flash Reader (MS, MS Pro, MMC, SD, xD)
Left Side Modem
1 x USB 2.0
3 x Audio (5.1 out or 4.0 + mic)
Power Connector
Right Side 3 x USB 2.0
Optical Drive (BD-ROM/DVDRW)
Kensington Lock
Back Side Cooling Exhaust
Operating System Windows Vista Ultimate 32-bit
Dimensions 15.13" x 10.81" x 1.55"-1.71" (WxDxH)
Weight 7.72 lbs
Extras Fingerprint scanner
Warranty 1-year standard
Price 6920-6422 starting at $1759
Other 6920 models (with downgraded features) start at $850

As mentioned, the 6920G has a definite multimedia slant. This is evidenced by the inclusion of a FullHD LCD and a Blu-ray drive on this particular model. Of course, this is also the most expensive 6920 for precisely that reason at around $1750; if you don't mind dropping the Blu-ray drive, you can pick up the 6920-6141 at Newegg for $1450. Honestly, that would be our recommendation, and we will explain why on the next page.

Going along with the multimedia angle, Acer includes a GeForce 9500M GS. In case you weren't aware, the 9500M GS is exactly the same as the 8600M GT. Compared to integrated graphics, either solution is a huge jump in performance, not to mention compatibility with games. Unfortunately, a "huge jump" over integrated options is nothing special, and outside of older titles you definitely won't be running any games at 1920x1080 with maximum detail settings. In fact, many games will require you to run at low to medium detail settings and 1280x800 in order to get acceptable performance, and sometimes even that won't be sufficient.

If you like the Aspire 6920G but you don't want 1080P or Blu-ray support, you can save another $450 by purchasing the 6920-6441 ($1000 at Newegg). That model also drops the memory down to 3GB and reduces hard drive size to 250GB, and the processor is an older T7500 (65nm, 2.2 GHz, 4MB cache, 800 FSB). Still not cheap enough for you? Circuit City offers the 6920-6621, with a current price of only $630 (regular price is $850). That will get you a T5550 (1.83 GHz, 2 MB cache, 667 FSB), 320 GB hard drive, 3GB RAM, and integrated X3100 graphics. You also get a 6-cell battery instead of the larger 8-cell battery, so battery life most likely won't be much better than the model we're reviewing. At less than half the price, however, it's hard to complain too much.

Acer 6920G – Overview Acer 6920G – Thoughts and Summary
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  • Hrel - Thursday, September 18, 2008 - link

    Midrange graphics are great! Why would you expect to run any game on a laptop at high or max detail settings? Why do you care about detail settings? It doesn't effect how fun the game is. On a laptop, as long as you can run modern games at min-med settings and get decent frames that's all I would ever want. If you want to max everything out use your desktop. However, I would like to see the ability to turn off the discrete card and use integrated graphics become standard. And, in general, laptops need much better LCD's and better battery life, HP has a 24hour notebook, meaning the battery lasts 24 hours, LED backlight, why aren't LED backlights standard place?????
  • JarredWalton - Thursday, September 18, 2008 - link

    The HP "24 hour" notebook includes an extra battery attachment that sits under the notebook and weighs several pounds if I'm not mistaken. If you buy any of these laptops and six to eight extra batteries, you could get 24 hours as well. :-) Yeah, that's sort of extreme, but so is a huge battery sitting under a small laptop.

    As for midrange graphics and gaming, let me reiterate: running at 1280x800 I couldn't break 20 FPS in Mass Effect or Crysis even at minimum detail, and GRID at medium-low detail was playable but looked like a four year old graphics engine. There are plenty of other games that start looking quite poor before you break 30 FPS. Graphics aren't everything, true, but they do make a difference. That's not to say you can't play any games on these midrange GPUs, but I would hate to give people the mistaken impression that midrange mobile GPUs run most games "fine" when that's simply not true.

    Midrange mobile graphics *aren't* great, and in fact even the fastest mobile GPUs are slower than desktop "midrange" graphics: the 9600 GT costs under $100 and outperforms the 9800M GTS, and the ~$110 8800 GT 512MB is faster than any mobile GPU. (Same for the HD 4670 and even HD 3850.) If you want to play modern games on a notebook, get the Gateway P-7811 or some other more powerful (and larger) notebook. Otherwise, the vast majority of people will be better off with a midrange desktop for gaming and a true midrange solution.
  • strikeback03 - Friday, September 19, 2008 - link

    For this very reason I'm wondering why you bothered running the full gaming tests on all of these. Wouldn't maybe a full test on one game plus minimum settings/resolution for the others be enough to offer a best case ceiling and say "See, don't look to play modern games on these"? Would save you significant time I'd imagine.
  • JarredWalton - Friday, September 19, 2008 - link

    It would save time, but it wouldn't provide a ready comparison to other mobile GPUs, which is one thing I wanted to do. (That's also why I tested the Gateway M-152XL at settings other than 1280x800, just to show how the GPU would run with a different LCD.) If you just want 3DMark scores, you can find that at some other places, but no one plays 3DMark for fun.

    Another problem: if you choose just one game, which one should you go with? Assassin's Creed DX9 is roughly half the speed of the faster 9800M GTS, and while that's a big difference you can easily turn down a few settings and get acceptable performance at 1280x800. On the other hand CoH is about 1/3 to 1/4 the performance of the same GPU. The best characterization of performance requires more testing, so some people would want scores for TF2, HL2, and a bunch of older games as well, but I had to draw the line somewhere.

    At least now I can point to a (relatively large) battery of gaming tests and say, "This is why you shouldn't plan on using low or midrange laptop GPUs for gaming. It's not just one or two games that will struggle, but a large number of newer titles won't run well regardless of settings, and others will only run well when you set the detail levels to 'ugly'." :)
  • JarredWalton - Thursday, September 18, 2008 - link

    Edit: that last line is supposed to say "a true mobile solution".
  • arjunp2085 - Thursday, September 18, 2008 - link

    Why is that i have never seen a Single AMD based laptops on the list....

    780G is one great solution for graphics on laptops.. Y is there no article about PUMA????

    Is it some BIAS??
  • JarredWalton - Thursday, September 18, 2008 - link

    I could forward the list of email messages requesting AMD laptops to you if you'd like. I specifically asked a couple of companies for one of the HD 3200 laptops, because I think it's a very compelling platform. Why haven't I received one yet? No idea... but I'll check back with the contacts and hopefully get one soon.
  • Voldenuit - Thursday, September 18, 2008 - link

    For $1100, you can buy a Thinkpad T400.

    I don't see how anyone would prefer an Acer, Gateway, or AVADirect at these pricepoints.
  • JarredWalton - Thursday, September 18, 2008 - link

    It all depends on what you're after, but Lenovo is certainly a viable option. The T400 is good, but you'll probably want to spend more than $1100. I'd get 4GB RAM, 320GB HDD, LED backlighting, 6-cell battery, Vista Home Premium, DVDR, 802.11N WiFi, and Bluetooth. That puts the price at around $1450, which includes $450 savings (limited time offer) and only a 1-year warranty. Bump it up to 3-years and you're at $1550, which is actually still very good. Without the $500 savings it would be difficult to recommend that much, however.
  • Voldenuit - Thursday, September 18, 2008 - link

    You can easily configure a great T400 w/ 2 GB RAM, DVD-burner, discrete Radeon 3470, wireless-N (only $15 extra), LED screen (only $60 extra) and 6-cell battery (only $15 extra) for under $1200.

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