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Acer Predator Triton 300 hands on: Acer’s entry-level gaming laptop is most impressive

Price when reviewed : £1172
inc VAT (converted from €1,299)

Acer’s new gaming behemoth combines powerful specs with relative affordability

If there’s one thing we know for certain now that Acer’s all-singing and all-dancing press conference is done and dusted at IFA 2019, it’s that the firm hasn’t shifted its focus away from the hardcore gamer. No matter your budget, Acer really wants to keep reiterating that there’s a gaming laptop that suits your needs.

Read next: Best gaming laptops

Mercifully, Acer has just expanded its high-performance portfolio, introducing a new sibling to its long-standing Triton range of laptops. The cheapest of the family, the new Triton 300 might lack the headline-grabbing 300Hz screen of its bigger brother, but Acer’s new entry-level gaming laptop is equally as impressive.

Acer Triton 300 review: Key specifications, price and release date

  • 15.6in Full HD (144Hz) IPS display
  • Intel ninth-gen Core i5 and i7 processors
  • 16GB of RAM (expandable up to 32GB)
  • Nvidia GeForce GTX 1650 graphics
  • 1TB SSD and 1TB HDD
  • Price: Starting at €1,299
  • Release date: Later this year

Acer Triton 300 review: Design, key features and first impressions

This rather chunky gaming laptop isn’t as svelte as the new Swift 5 but nor should it be – the Triton 300 is a completely different breed of device. This is a laptop that should effortlessly shrug off any GPU-straining game you happen to throw at it, with a little bit of upgradeability wiggle room in the near future, should you need it.

First things first, despite criticising its size, and considering the beefy components housed inside, the Triton 300 is remarkably lightweight. Tipping the scales at 2.3Kg, it’s far from the most portable of laptops, but when you consider that most gaming laptops of this stature are usually much heavier, then it’s clear that the Triton 300 could become the ideal device for LAN party meetups.

When it comes to aesthetics, the Triton 300 doesn’t divert too far from the tried and tested design cues of previous Predator-branded devices. The aluminium chassis is coated in a matte black finish, with subtle blue highlights and accents around the individually backlit keys, rear air intake fan and Predator logo on the laptop’s lid.

It’s certainly not a bad design, and the more subdued construction is a major improvement on the gaudy, overly-macho colours of yesteryear, but it’s hardly something to write home about either.

Regardless, the Triton 300 is overflowing with physical connections. You’ll find three full-fat USB ports, as well as a USB Type-C port, HDMI slot and Mini DisplayPort which allows you to connect the laptop to an external monitor (or three). There’s also a Gigabit Ethernet connector, Kensington Security Slot and 3.5mm headphone and microphone ports.

The laptop’s display is par for the course when it comes to gaming-focused devices these days, although you could always fork out an extra grand or so if you want the fancy 300Hz screen of the Triton 500. The cheapest Triton is fitted with a 15.6in IPS screen with a Full HD (1,920 x 1,080) resolution and a refresh rate of 144Hz. It looked rather good based on my limited first impressions, although it didn’t seem to get very bright in the heavily-lit demo area.

Let’s get to the meat and potatoes, and discuss the Triton 300’s core components. The laptop can be configured with up to a ninth-generation Intel Core i7 processor, rather than the new tenth-gen Ice Lake and Comet Lake chipsets that have started appearing in other devices.

Of course, the real test of a gaming laptop’s strength lies in its graphics-processing abilities. The Triton 300 benefits from Nvidia’s GeForce GTX 1650 GPU, which has a boosted clock speed of 1665MHz and supposedly provides 70% faster performance when running “the latest titles” compared to the previous generation GTX 1050 GPU. That should allow for enough oomph to play any current-generation game, and I can’t imagine you’ll run into any major issues with future titles, either.

No matter the configuration, you also get 16GB of DDR4 2666Hz RAM, as well as a spare slot for another 16GB should you need it. Acer is a bit tight-lipped on the storage configurations, however, although the demo unit was equipped with 500GB of HDD storage, and Acer says the Triton 300 will “support’ up to two 1TB PCIe NVMe SSDs and a 2TB hard drive. Whether this means the laptop can be purchased in shops with this much storage, or you can simply open the chassis and add your own remains to be seen.

Acer Triton 300 review: Early verdict

Confusing storage options aside, the Triton 300 is a worthy addition to Acer’s gaming lineup. The cheapest of the bunch as equally as impressive, and while it might lack the 300Hz screen and, err, sliding keyboard of its siblings, the Triton 300 is remarkably well-priced as far as gaming laptops go.

Starting at €1,299 – there’s no word yet on how much the top-end configuration will cost – the Triton 300 is generously kitted out, and I imagine this will be a solid choice for avid gaming enthusiasts when it hits the shops later this year.

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