Acer Aspire Vero review: Sustainable performance

Tech companies have been trying various ways over the past decade to reduce their carbon footprint, whether it’s using eco-friendly packaging and recycled metals in their products, or even with renewable energy. Powering its manufacturing and assembly lines. We have seen some drastic efforts to reduce e-waste in the smartphone segment, as many manufacturers have stopped bundling accessories like chargers with their products. Acer has recently pushed itself to produce “greener” devices, and the result is the new Vero line of laptops. Acer Aspire Veros The laptop was the first to be announced back in December 2021. Today we’ll be reviewing it, but the company recently Expands its Vero line To include more laptop models, mini PCs, a monitor, a wireless mouse, and a few accessories.

The main appeal of the Vero line is that it uses post-consumer recycled or PCR plastics for manufacturing. In the case of the Aspire Vero, the entire chassis and the frame around the display are made of 30 percent PCR material, which should make it more eco-friendly for later recycling. Building materials aside, the Aspire Vero is in essence a mid-range laptop designed to handle casual productivity and multimedia tasks, and we’ll be testing its capabilities in this review.

Acer Aspire Vero price in India

acer launched Aspire Vero at a starting MRP of Rs. 79,999 in India, but now it is available for much less. At the time of this review, Acer’s own online store listed two variants of the Aspire Vero. The 8GB RAM variant (the one I’m testing) costs Rs. 57,999 and the one with 16GB RAM is priced at Rs. 62,999. Apart from the difference in RAM, the specifications of both the variants are similar which includes 11th generation Intel Core i5 CPU and 512GB SSD.

Acer Aspire Vero Design

The look of the Acer Aspire Vero is definitely different from the rest of the Acer Aspire series. The base of the laptop has an interesting block-like design with no tapered edges to offer any illusion of slimness. The lid and main chassis are light gray in color with a hexagonal texture and fine specs of yellow and brown. Acer says that it has not used any paint on the chassis and that the finish is the result of the use of PCR plastic. The laptop feels very rugged, with very little flex in the lid and keyboard area. The Acer logo and all other labels on the laptop are engraved in the plastic, avoiding any unwanted paint or stickers.

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Acer Aspire Vero has good number of ports but no SD card slot

The Acer Aspire Vero has a good selection of physical ports. On the right are a single USB 2.0 Type-A port, Kensington lock slot, headphone and microphone combo socket, and two status LEDs. The laptop’s left side houses most of the ports, including a charging socket, a Gigabit Ethernet port, HDMI, two USB 3.2 Type-A ports with power-off charging functionality on one, and a USB Type-C. Port. The latter cannot be used to charge the laptop. The Aspire Vero doesn’t have an SD card slot, which is disappointing.

The ventilation system in the Acer Aspire Vero seems pretty standard. Underneath the chassis there are lots of inlet slits for air intake, which is then expelled through the opening between the two hinges. The Aspire Vero has bright yellow rubber feet on the bottom that provide a decent height from whatever surface this laptop is placed on. There’s also some rubber padding on the back of the lid as it pushes the base up at an angle when it’s open.

The Acer Aspire Vero has a full-size keyboard with black, chiclet-style keys and white backlighting. Acer says it has used 50 percent PCR plastic for the keycaps. The keys in general are convenient to use but I didn’t like how the up and down direction keys are too small and there isn’t enough space between them. The Aspire Vero has a large palm rest and trackpad. The latter doesn’t offer the most accurate touch sensitivity but it gets the job done. There is also a fingerprint sensor in the top left corner of the trackpad.

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The PCR plastic used for the Acer Aspire Vero gives it a unique look and feel

The Acer Aspire Vero sports a 15.6-inch IPS LCD panel with full-HD (1920×1080 pixels) resolution. Brightness and contrast levels seem adequate for indoor use, and the display’s matte finish helps reduce reflections significantly. The laptop comes in a brown box, which is claimed to be 100 percent recyclable. Acer makes a point to point out that the included laptop bag is also made from recycled plastic.

Acer Aspire Vero Specifications and Software

At the time of this review, the Acer Aspire Vero is available in India only with the 11th generation Intel Core i5-1135G7 quad-core CPU. You get an integrated Intel GPU. As mentioned earlier, you can buy this laptop with either 8GB or 16GB of DDR4 RAM. Acer says that the RAM can be expanded up to 12GB in the 8GB model. After cracking open the base of the laptop, which is a simple process since it’s held in place with standard Phillips screws, I noticed only one accessible RAM slot, with a Samsung 4GB DDR4-3200 (1600MHz) RAM stick that you can Take it out. The other 4GB of RAM is soldered onto the motherboard, and is therefore not user replaceable.

There’s also a 512GB PCIe NVMe SSD, which is readily available. Even though these components are easy to access, if you try to open the laptop yourself you will void the warranty, so I think it would be best to let an Acer service representative do any upgrades under warranty.

The Acer Aspire Vero has stereo speakers, a 720p webcam, and a 48WHr battery. Wireless connectivity includes Wi-Fi 6 and Bluetooth 5.1.

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The Acer Aspire Vero offers easy access to its RAM and SSD, but opening the base may void your warranty

My review unit was running Microsoft Windows 11 when I installed it. The Acer Aspire Vero comes with a complimentary license for Microsoft Office 2021 Home & Student, which only includes Word, Excel, and PowerPoint. You also get a trial version of Norton Security Ultra and some of Acer’s first-party apps like Care Center and PureVoice Console. Acer also bundles CyberLink’s PhotoDirector and PowerDirector editing apps with the Aspire Vero. There’s a new battery management app called Vero Sense, which lets you choose between various battery profile presets and lets you limit charging to 80 percent (versus 100 percent) to extend the life of the battery.

Acer Aspire Vero performance and battery life

For general productivity, the Acer Aspire Vero handled MS Office apps and browser-based tasks very well. Thanks to the SSD, Windows 11 was quick to boot and apps were generally quick to load. The laptop was also adept at multitasking, and switching between running apps was quick and painless. The Aspire Vero ran cool when I wasn’t stressing it and only got a little hot while charging or gaming. Subsequent activity caused the exhaust fan to rattle, which was then audible, but it never got too distractingly loud.

Speaking of gaming, the Acer Aspire Vero can run casual games from platforms like Steam, Epic Games, or the Microsoft Store, but heavy titles struggle to actually run properly. For example, Portal 2 and Lego Batman 3: Beyond Gotham ran smoothly at high graphics quality, but Fortnite wasn’t very playable even after lowering the graphics settings. The laptop performed well in synthetic benchmarks considering its specifications. The Aspire Vero scored 3,972 points in PCMark 10 and 12,519 in the 3DMark Night Red graphics test. For real-world tests, the Aspire Vero managed to compress a 3.24GB folder of mixed files in 3 minutes and 16 seconds, while it took 1 minute and 17 seconds to transcode a 1.3GB AVI file to H.265.

The Acer Aspire Vero’s display is sharp and bright, making it perfect for work and watching comfortably. It has relatively thin borders on the left and right sides as compared to the ones at the top and bottom. It’s nice to stream videos on YouTube and in apps like Netflix. Brightness was more than adequate and colors were well saturated with enough punch. Video quality recorded by the webcam was good, and even in low-light conditions, there wasn’t much noise in the footage. I found the keyboard quite comfortable to use even for extended typing sessions, but the trackpad felt a bit unresponsive at times when trying to perform quick multitouch gestures.

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Vero Sense app lets you choose between different battery profiles

Acer claims that the Aspire Vero can last up to 10 hours on a single charge but I found the actual number to be very low. Even with conservative use, with screen brightness below 50 percent, when I was mostly using apps and watching videos in the browser, I usually got about 20 percent battery before power saver mode started. There was a runtime of five hours. Level. Below 15 percent battery level, the laptop switches to Vero+ battery mode which gives you around 20 additional minutes of runtime before charging it. Overall, you should expect around six hours of runtime on a single charge with light to moderate use, which is good, but could have been better. I also ran Battery Eater Pro which is usually a good indicator of a laptop’s actual battery life under heavy loads, and the program ran for two hours before the battery ran out.

Decision

The Acer Aspire Vero is a mid-range laptop that performs well and doesn’t have any real major flaws. It should appeal to environmentally conscious buyers who want to reduce their carbon footprint. This laptop is sturdy and well built, and offers good performance, a good selection of ports, a bright display, and a comfortable keyboard. Battery life is also good, although it could have been better. My only real issue with it is that it is a bit heavy which can be cumbersome if you plan to travel a lot with it.

Market price Rs. 57,999 for the 8GB version is decent, though for the same price, you can find options with similar competing specs and Intel’s 12th Gen CPUs, such as the Asus VivoBook 15.

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