CeBIT 2007: Review Acer Aspire 5114WLMi Notebook

Multimedia for Everyone. Among other Acer notebooks which were exhibited at the CeBIT, we would also like to present the Aspire 5114 to you. The Aspire 5114 is basically interesting, because it provides multimedia equipment, is fit for current games and this all for an absolutely low price - a mobile Core 2 Duo processor and an ATI X1600 video card just under 1000.- Euro.

This review is a  summary of tests done on-site. We ask for some understanding that some of the measurements could, therefore, not be done.

Acer Aspire 5114WLMi Logo

Case

The Aspire 5114WLMi's case is the well-known Acer case, which is basically used for all notebooks of the Aspire 5000s series. This type of case is wide-spread, basically, because Acer wants to have its notebooks placed on the multimedia segment, which plays an import role, and on the other hand because the design pleases the eyes. E.g. the Die Aspire 5600 series comes with the same case than the 5114. Simple geometric forms and well-placed curves is what most of the customers seem to like.

The quality of case is in our opinion not really the most important reason for the wide spreading and the success of this design. Even at the first glance the first  the first inexplicable weakness gets obvious: Above the keyboard there is a gap across the whole notebook. The problem is that this is not only for the eyes, instead the parts of the case are really separated from each other.

Therefore, if you, e.g., apply bending forces in order to adjust the position of the display by moving the hinges, these can hardly be absorbed by the whole case and you can observe clear deflections in the region of the cut. To be fair, we have to mentioned, that this issue has been improved compared to older model, however, in principal the problem resists. 

Furthermore, the moderate flexural rigidity of the base unit and the poor pressure resistance at some parts have to be criticized. Especially these should be definitely be improved at the display or more precisely at the display cover.

In general the Aspire 5114 should be, therefore, more or less be used as desktop notebook, whilst it should be avoided to expose it to extraordinary stress or force. If you treat your notebook carefully, the above mentioned weaknesses are put into perspective and should not cause any problems. In case you are planing an intensively mobile use this notebook, you should maybe reconsider buying it.

The order of the ports of Aspire 5114 is again typical Acer: The audio ports are in the middle of the front edge, the right side keeps the card reader, and the card slots, and the backside keeps most of the ports, among others fortunately a DVI port. Besides the audio-ports at the front, this order seems to be rather reasonable.

Acer Aspire 5114WLMi Interfaces
Acer Aspire 5114WLMi Interfaces

Input Devices

The keyboard seems to be rather dense, because it is only slightly structured. However, the big keys make a comfortable use possible. The travel seems to be somewhat short, if you type, however, we could not observe any annoying rattling.

Furthermore, we observed that the right upper part of the keyboard unit does not have a stable support plate, so the keyboard heavily deflects under pressure. We think, that this stems from missing support points or struts above the DVD drive, which is placed in this region.

The touch pad is excellent in use, and pleased us by good and precise response, and  a comfortable surface. The touch pad buttons were too easy to use. Maybe you might need to first get used to the 4-way button in its center.

Touch pad
Acer Aspire 5114WLMi Touch pad
Keyboard
Acer Aspire 5114WLMi Keyboar

Display

The Acer Aspire 5114WLMi is equipped with a 1280x800 Acer CrystalBrite TFT display. The reflecting surfaces contributes to a good subjective contrast and a  good brightness.

Horizontally, the stability to the vantage point is limited by reflections at too acute angles. Vertically, the usual darkening and lightening can soon be observed.

Acer Aspire 5114WLMi
Acer Aspire 5114WLMi

Performance

The Aspire 5114 is equipped with an AMD Turion 64 X2 CPU with a clock rate of 1.8 GHz and a L2 Cache of 1MB (TL-56). An ATI X1600 video card with 128MB video ram, which can be enhanced to provide up to 512MB by hypermemory, is the provided graphical solution. Furthermore, 1GB memory and a 160GB hard disk are provided. Considering a price of hardly 1000.- Euro, this is more than adequate.

Still you should consider a memory upgrade, because using Windows Vista and a video card with hypermemory will quickly use it all up, so that the available memory could easily become the bottle neck regarding performance. So: A GB more can not do any harm...

The performance of this notebook is sufficient for current Windows and office applications as well as for current games, which should run without problems, if you adapt the resolutions, and the level of details. However, it's yet a long way from the Aspire 5114 to a top notebook.

Further information about the video card can be found here or in our comparison of mobile video cards. Detailed information about the Turion 64 X2 CPU can be found here.

Please also look at our benchmark list of mobile processors or at our benchmark list of mobile video cards, in order to compare this notebook to other configurations.

The temperature of the  upper side as well as of the bottom was on-site (idle mode) clearly increased, but yet alright. Thereby, the left side got slightly warmer than the right side.
Most of the time the fan was deactivated during idle mode. Under load it started to run, but its noise emissions were rather decent.

Battery Runtime

This notebook is equipped with a 4800 mAh 8-Zellen lithium ions battery, which should be able to provide 2 up to 3 hours unplugged use, depending on the chosen energy profile.

Verdict

The Acer Aspire 5114 has some weaknesses regarding case robustness and workmanship. Therefore, and because of an only moderate stability to the vantage point of the display the mobile use is rather limited.

The input devices are besides some trifles alright and can be used without problems.

So, the Aspire 5114 is a only partly mobile desktop notebook, which can be used to play some games every now and then, whereby the price is clearly the most important aspect.

Acer Aspire 5114WLMi
Acer Aspire 5114WLMi
Reviewed: Acer Aspire 5114WLMi
Acer Aspire 5114WLMi

Specifications

Acer Aspire 5114WLMi

:: Processor
:: Memory
1024 MB, DDR2 SDRAM, max. 4096MB, 1x1024MB
:: Graphics adapter
:: Display
15.4 inch 16:10, 1280x800 pixel, WXGA CrystalBrite TFT Display, glossy: yes
:: Harddisk
160 GB - 5400 rpm, 160 GB 5400 rpm : 160GB, 5400rpm
:: Connections
Expresscard 34mm, PCCard TypII, Mikrofon, Line-In, Headphones-S/PDIF, 4x USB 2.0, VGA-Out, Firewire, DVI-D, S-Video Out, Kensington Lock, LAN, Modem
:: Size
height x width x depth (in mm): 34 x 358 x 269
:: Weight
3 kg
:: Battery
, 4800 mAh Lithium Ionen Akku (8-Zellen)
:: Price
1030 Euro
:: Additional features
ATI Xpress 1150, HDD: 160GB, 5400rpm, , DVD +/-R (DL) oder HD-DVD,

 

The Acer Aspire 5114WLMi comes with...
Acer Aspire 5114WLMi Image
...a good multimedia equipment.
Acer Aspire 5114WLMi Image
The input devices are in general alright.
Acer Aspire 5114WLMi Image
Clear weakness: A moderate robustness and flexural rigidity of the case.
Acer Aspire 5114WLMi Image

Price Comparison

Ciao Acer Aspire 5114WLMi

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> Notebook / Laptop Reviews and News > Reviews > Archive of our own reviews > CeBIT 2007: Review Acer Aspire 5114WLMi Notebook
Author: J. Simon Leitner, 2007-04-10 (Update: 2013-01-16)