Notebookcheck

Acer Aspire E5-521 Notebook Review

Sascha Mölck (translated by Liala Stieglitz), 03/07/2015

Quiet long-lasting runner. The Aspire E5-521 can boast with a low operating noise and very long battery life. The laptop also has plenty of storage capacity. Its only real shortcoming is the dark, low-contrast screen.

Acer presents yet another affordable, 15.6-inch office laptop with its Aspire E5-521-60Y6. The laptop is powered by an AMD Beema APU. Regular readers of our website will recognize the laptop because we have tested various sister models (Aspire E5-571GAspire E5-551) of the Aspire. Our E5-521 review sample will show whether it is compelling.

The Aspire has plenty of rivals. Affordable laptops are a dime-a-dozen nowadays. We would mention the Toshiba Satellite L50D-B-12ZHP 355 G2, and Lenovo IdeaPad Z50-75 as examples.

Since the Aspire E5-521's build is identical with its sister models, we will not go in-depth about casing, connectivity, input devices or speakers. The corresponding information can be found in the review of the Aspire E5-551 and Aspire E5-571G.

Display

Acer installs a matte 15.6-inch screen with a native resolution of 1366x768 pixels in the Aspire. Unfortunately, the screen only achieves a very low brightness of 173.9 cd/m². This rate is no longer contemporary even in the low-cost sector. We expect a rate that is clearly beyond 200 cd/m². The screen's contrast of 289:1 is also poor.

177
cd/m²
180
cd/m²
186
cd/m²
162
cd/m²
185
cd/m²
167
cd/m²
171
cd/m²
159
cd/m²
178
cd/m²
Distribution of brightness
X-Rite i1Pro 2
Maximum: 186 cd/m² Average: 173.9 cd/m²
Brightness Distribution: 85 %
Center on Battery: 185 cd/m²
Contrast: 289:1 (Black: 0.64 cd/m²)
ΔE Color 8.84 | 0.4-29.43 Ø6.3
ΔE Greyscale 11.04 | 0.64-98 Ø6.5
40% AdobeRGB 1998 (Argyll 3D)
Gamma: 2.49

The screen's color reproduction in state of delivery is slightly better than we know from the low-cost sector. The average DeltaE 2000 shift is 8.84. We normally ascertain rates ranging from 10 to 12. A value less than 3 would be desirable. The screen has a minor bluish cast.

CalMAN - ColorChecker
CalMAN - ColorChecker
CalMAN - Grayscale
CalMAN - Grayscale
CalMAN - Saturation Sweeps
CalMAN - Saturation Sweeps
The Aspire outdoors.
The Aspire outdoors.

Acer treats the Aspire to a TN screen. That means that the screen can only offer limited viewing angles. Although it is quite possible to use the laptop outdoors, it will have to primarily be in (very) shaded surroundings. The sun would otherwise outshine the relatively dark screen.

Performance

Acer's Aspire E5-521-60Y6 belongs to the basic, 15.6-inch office laptops. Applications from the office and Internet fields are no challenge for the laptop. Our review sample is available for just below 400 Euros (~$434). Acer has various other configurations in its lineup.

Processor

An A6-6310 (Beema) APU from AMD powers the Aspire inside. The CPU part of the APU is a quad-core processor that clocks with a base speed of 1.8 GHz. Its speed can be boosted up to 2.4 GHz via Turbo. The processor performed the Cinebench CPU benchmarks with 2 GHz (multi-thread) and 2 to 2.4 GHz (single-thread). It clocked with 1.6 to 1.8 GHz (multi-thread) and 2 to 2.4 GHz (single-thread) in battery mode. A look in our comparison chart reveals that the CPU's multi-thread performance is just marginally below that of a Core i3-4010U processor. The difference is bigger in single-thread performance.

Cinebench R10 Rendering Multiple CPUs 32Bit
5575
Cinebench R10 Shading 32Bit
3111
Cinebench R10 Rendering Single 32Bit
1858
Cinebench R11.5 CPU Multi 64Bit
1.94 Points
Cinebench R11.5 CPU Single 64Bit
0.57 Points
Cinebench R11.5 OpenGL 64Bit
14.98 fps
Cinebench R15 Ref. Match 64Bit
98 %
Cinebench R15 OpenGL 64Bit
16.25 fps
Cinebench R15 CPU Multi 64Bit
157 Points
Cinebench R15 CPU Single 64Bit
47 Points
Help
Cinebench R15
CPU Single 64Bit (sort by value)
Acer Aspire E5-521-60Y6
Radeon R4 (Beema), A6-6310, WDC Scorpio Blue WD10JPVX-22JC3T0
47 Points ∼23%
Toshiba Satellite L50D-B-12Z
Radeon R4 (Beema), A6-6310, Toshiba MQ01ABF050
47 Points ∼23% 0%
HP 355 G2
Radeon R5 M240, A8-6410, Toshiba MQ01ABF050
49 Points ∼24% +4%
Asus X555LD-XX283H
GeForce 820M, 4010U, Hitachi Travelstar Z5K500 HTS545050A7E680
65 Points ∼31% +38%
Lenovo IdeaPad Z50-75
Radeon R6 M255DX, A8-7100, WDC Scorpio Blue WD10JPCX-24UE4T0
40 Points ∼19% -15%
HP 350 G1
Radeon HD 8670M, 4210U, Seagate Momentus ST750LM022 HN-M750MB
88 Points ∼43% +87%
Acer Aspire E5-551G-F1EW
Radeon R7 M265, FX-7500, Seagate ST1000LM014 Solid State Hybrid Drive
56 Points ∼27% +19%
Lenovo IdeaPad G50-70
Radeon R5 M230, 4200U, Seagate Momentus Thin ST500LT012-1DG142
98 Points ∼47% +109%
Asus F555LD-XX243H
GeForce 820M, 4010U, Seagate Momentus SpinPoint M8 ST1000LM024 HN-M101MBB
67 Points ∼32% +43%
Acer Extensa 2510-34Z4
HD Graphics 4400, 4030U, Western Digital Scorpio Blue WD5000LPVX
70 Points ∼34% +49%
CPU Multi 64Bit (sort by value)
Acer Aspire E5-521-60Y6
Radeon R4 (Beema), A6-6310, WDC Scorpio Blue WD10JPVX-22JC3T0
157 Points ∼5%
Toshiba Satellite L50D-B-12Z
Radeon R4 (Beema), A6-6310, Toshiba MQ01ABF050
157 Points ∼5% 0%
HP 355 G2
Radeon R5 M240, A8-6410, Toshiba MQ01ABF050
164 Points ∼6% +4%
Asus X555LD-XX283H
GeForce 820M, 4010U, Hitachi Travelstar Z5K500 HTS545050A7E680
163 Points ∼6% +4%
Lenovo IdeaPad Z50-75
Radeon R6 M255DX, A8-7100, WDC Scorpio Blue WD10JPCX-24UE4T0
126 Points ∼4% -20%
HP 350 G1
Radeon HD 8670M, 4210U, Seagate Momentus ST750LM022 HN-M750MB
237 Points ∼8% +51%
Acer Aspire E5-551G-F1EW
Radeon R7 M265, FX-7500, Seagate ST1000LM014 Solid State Hybrid Drive
169 Points ∼6% +8%
Lenovo IdeaPad G50-70
Radeon R5 M230, 4200U, Seagate Momentus Thin ST500LT012-1DG142
230 Points ∼8% +46%
Asus F555LD-XX243H
GeForce 820M, 4010U, Seagate Momentus SpinPoint M8 ST1000LM024 HN-M101MBB
168 Points ∼6% +7%
Acer Extensa 2510-34Z4
HD Graphics 4400, 4030U, Western Digital Scorpio Blue WD5000LPVX
187 Points ∼6% +19%
Cinebench R11.5
CPU Single 64Bit (sort by value)
Acer Aspire E5-521-60Y6
Radeon R4 (Beema), A6-6310, WDC Scorpio Blue WD10JPVX-22JC3T0
0.57 Points ∼24%
Toshiba Satellite L50D-B-12Z
Radeon R4 (Beema), A6-6310, Toshiba MQ01ABF050
0.57 Points ∼24% 0%
HP 355 G2
Radeon R5 M240, A8-6410, Toshiba MQ01ABF050
0.6 Points ∼26% +5%
Asus X555LD-XX283H
GeForce 820M, 4010U, Hitachi Travelstar Z5K500 HTS545050A7E680
0.69 Points ∼29% +21%
Lenovo IdeaPad Z50-75
Radeon R6 M255DX, A8-7100, WDC Scorpio Blue WD10JPCX-24UE4T0
0.54 Points ∼23% -5%
HP 350 G1
Radeon HD 8670M, 4210U, Seagate Momentus ST750LM022 HN-M750MB
1.14 Points ∼49% +100%
Acer Aspire E5-551G-F1EW
Radeon R7 M265, FX-7500, Seagate ST1000LM014 Solid State Hybrid Drive
0.68 Points ∼29% +19%
Acer Aspire E1-572G-54204G75Mnkk
Radeon HD 8750M, 4200U, TOSHIBA MQ01ABD075
0.94 Points ∼40% +65%
Lenovo IdeaPad G50-70
Radeon R5 M230, 4200U, Seagate Momentus Thin ST500LT012-1DG142
1.12 Points ∼48% +96%
Asus F555LD-XX243H
GeForce 820M, 4010U, Seagate Momentus SpinPoint M8 ST1000LM024 HN-M101MBB
0.76 Points ∼32% +33%
Acer Extensa 2510-34Z4
HD Graphics 4400, 4030U, Western Digital Scorpio Blue WD5000LPVX
0.79 Points ∼34% +39%
CPU Multi 64Bit (sort by value)
Acer Aspire E5-521-60Y6
Radeon R4 (Beema), A6-6310, WDC Scorpio Blue WD10JPVX-22JC3T0
1.94 Points ∼8%
Toshiba Satellite L50D-B-12Z
Radeon R4 (Beema), A6-6310, Toshiba MQ01ABF050
1.93 Points ∼8% -1%
HP 355 G2
Radeon R5 M240, A8-6410, Toshiba MQ01ABF050
2.04 Points ∼9% +5%
Asus X555LD-XX283H
GeForce 820M, 4010U, Hitachi Travelstar Z5K500 HTS545050A7E680
1.76 Points ∼7% -9%
Lenovo IdeaPad Z50-75
Radeon R6 M255DX, A8-7100, WDC Scorpio Blue WD10JPCX-24UE4T0
1.97 Points ∼8% +2%
HP 350 G1
Radeon HD 8670M, 4210U, Seagate Momentus ST750LM022 HN-M750MB
2.57 Points ∼11% +32%
Acer Aspire E5-551G-F1EW
Radeon R7 M265, FX-7500, Seagate ST1000LM014 Solid State Hybrid Drive
1.89 Points ∼8% -3%
Acer Aspire E1-572G-54204G75Mnkk
Radeon HD 8750M, 4200U, TOSHIBA MQ01ABD075
2.51 Points ∼11% +29%
Lenovo IdeaPad G50-70
Radeon R5 M230, 4200U, Seagate Momentus Thin ST500LT012-1DG142
2.5 Points ∼10% +29%
Asus F555LD-XX243H
GeForce 820M, 4010U, Seagate Momentus SpinPoint M8 ST1000LM024 HN-M101MBB
1.81 Points ∼8% -7%
Acer Extensa 2510-34Z4
HD Graphics 4400, 4030U, Western Digital Scorpio Blue WD5000LPVX
2.01 Points ∼8% +4%
Cinebench R10
Rendering Single 32Bit (sort by value)
Acer Aspire E5-521-60Y6
Radeon R4 (Beema), A6-6310, WDC Scorpio Blue WD10JPVX-22JC3T0
1858 Points ∼17%
Toshiba Satellite L50D-B-12Z
Radeon R4 (Beema), A6-6310, Toshiba MQ01ABF050
1840 Points ∼17% -1%
HP 355 G2
Radeon R5 M240, A8-6410, Toshiba MQ01ABF050
1850 Points ∼17% 0%
Asus X555LD-XX283H
GeForce 820M, 4010U, Hitachi Travelstar Z5K500 HTS545050A7E680
2345 Points ∼22% +26%
Lenovo IdeaPad Z50-75
Radeon R6 M255DX, A8-7100, WDC Scorpio Blue WD10JPCX-24UE4T0
1471 Points ∼14% -21%
HP 350 G1
Radeon HD 8670M, 4210U, Seagate Momentus ST750LM022 HN-M750MB
3809 Points ∼35% +105%
Acer Aspire E5-551G-F1EW
Radeon R7 M265, FX-7500, Seagate ST1000LM014 Solid State Hybrid Drive
1943 Points ∼18% +5%
Acer Aspire E1-572G-54204G75Mnkk
Radeon HD 8750M, 4200U, TOSHIBA MQ01ABD075
3768 Points ∼35% +103%
Asus F555LD-XX243H
GeForce 820M, 4010U, Seagate Momentus SpinPoint M8 ST1000LM024 HN-M101MBB
2469 Points ∼23% +33%
Rendering Multiple CPUs 32Bit (sort by value)
Acer Aspire E5-521-60Y6
Radeon R4 (Beema), A6-6310, WDC Scorpio Blue WD10JPVX-22JC3T0
5575 Points ∼11%
Toshiba Satellite L50D-B-12Z
Radeon R4 (Beema), A6-6310, Toshiba MQ01ABF050
5612 Points ∼11% +1%
HP 355 G2
Radeon R5 M240, A8-6410, Toshiba MQ01ABF050
5785 Points ∼12% +4%
Asus X555LD-XX283H
GeForce 820M, 4010U, Hitachi Travelstar Z5K500 HTS545050A7E680
5194 Points ∼10% -7%
Lenovo IdeaPad Z50-75
Radeon R6 M255DX, A8-7100, WDC Scorpio Blue WD10JPCX-24UE4T0
4165 Points ∼8% -25%
HP 350 G1
Radeon HD 8670M, 4210U, Seagate Momentus ST750LM022 HN-M750MB
7799 Points ∼16% +40%
Acer Aspire E5-551G-F1EW
Radeon R7 M265, FX-7500, Seagate ST1000LM014 Solid State Hybrid Drive
5369 Points ∼11% -4%
Acer Aspire E1-572G-54204G75Mnkk
Radeon HD 8750M, 4200U, TOSHIBA MQ01ABD075
7637 Points ∼15% +37%
Asus F555LD-XX243H
GeForce 820M, 4010U, Seagate Momentus SpinPoint M8 ST1000LM024 HN-M101MBB
5517 Points ∼11% -1%
Geekbench 3
32 Bit Multi-Core Score (sort by value)
Acer Aspire E5-521-60Y6
Radeon R4 (Beema), A6-6310, WDC Scorpio Blue WD10JPVX-22JC3T0
3534 Points ∼11%
Toshiba Satellite L50D-B-12Z
Radeon R4 (Beema), A6-6310, Toshiba MQ01ABF050
3565 Points ∼11% +1%
HP 355 G2
Radeon R5 M240, A8-6410, Toshiba MQ01ABF050
3792 Points ∼12% +7%
Asus X555LD-XX283H
GeForce 820M, 4010U, Hitachi Travelstar Z5K500 HTS545050A7E680
3421 Points ∼11% -3%
Lenovo IdeaPad Z50-75
Radeon R6 M255DX, A8-7100, WDC Scorpio Blue WD10JPCX-24UE4T0
3319 Points ∼11% -6%
HP 350 G1
Radeon HD 8670M, 4210U, Seagate Momentus ST750LM022 HN-M750MB
4641 Points ∼15% +31%
Acer Aspire E5-551G-F1EW
Radeon R7 M265, FX-7500, Seagate ST1000LM014 Solid State Hybrid Drive
4085 Points ∼13% +16%
Asus F555LD-XX243H
GeForce 820M, 4010U, Seagate Momentus SpinPoint M8 ST1000LM024 HN-M101MBB
3647 Points ∼12% +3%
32 Bit Single-Core Score (sort by value)
Acer Aspire E5-521-60Y6
Radeon R4 (Beema), A6-6310, WDC Scorpio Blue WD10JPVX-22JC3T0
1244 Points ∼27%
Toshiba Satellite L50D-B-12Z
Radeon R4 (Beema), A6-6310, Toshiba MQ01ABF050
1237 Points ∼27% -1%
HP 355 G2
Radeon R5 M240, A8-6410, Toshiba MQ01ABF050
1287 Points ∼28% +3%
Asus X555LD-XX283H
GeForce 820M, 4010U, Hitachi Travelstar Z5K500 HTS545050A7E680
1693 Points ∼36% +36%
Lenovo IdeaPad Z50-75
Radeon R6 M255DX, A8-7100, WDC Scorpio Blue WD10JPCX-24UE4T0
1487 Points ∼32% +20%
HP 350 G1
Radeon HD 8670M, 4210U, Seagate Momentus ST750LM022 HN-M750MB
2362 Points ∼51% +90%
Acer Aspire E5-551G-F1EW
Radeon R7 M265, FX-7500, Seagate ST1000LM014 Solid State Hybrid Drive
1760 Points ∼38% +41%
Asus F555LD-XX243H
GeForce 820M, 4010U, Seagate Momentus SpinPoint M8 ST1000LM024 HN-M101MBB
1767 Points ∼38% +42%
Sunspider - 1.0 Total Score (sort by value)
Acer Aspire E5-521-60Y6
Radeon R4 (Beema), A6-6310, WDC Scorpio Blue WD10JPVX-22JC3T0
254.3 ms * ∼6%
Toshiba Satellite L50D-B-12Z
Radeon R4 (Beema), A6-6310, Toshiba MQ01ABF050
251.1 ms * ∼6% +1%
HP 355 G2
Radeon R5 M240, A8-6410, Toshiba MQ01ABF050
253 ms * ∼6% +1%
Asus X555LD-XX283H
GeForce 820M, 4010U, Hitachi Travelstar Z5K500 HTS545050A7E680
203.6 ms * ∼5% +20%
HP 350 G1
Radeon HD 8670M, 4210U, Seagate Momentus ST750LM022 HN-M750MB
116 ms * ∼3% +54%
Acer Aspire E5-551G-F1EW
Radeon R7 M265, FX-7500, Seagate ST1000LM014 Solid State Hybrid Drive
176.9 ms * ∼4% +30%
Asus F555LD-XX243H
GeForce 820M, 4010U, Seagate Momentus SpinPoint M8 ST1000LM024 HN-M101MBB
192.8 ms * ∼5% +24%
Peacekeeper - --- (sort by value)
Acer Aspire E5-521-60Y6
Radeon R4 (Beema), A6-6310, WDC Scorpio Blue WD10JPVX-22JC3T0
1108 Points ∼18%
Toshiba Satellite L50D-B-12Z
Radeon R4 (Beema), A6-6310, Toshiba MQ01ABF050
1088 Points ∼18% -2%
HP 355 G2
Radeon R5 M240, A8-6410, Toshiba MQ01ABF050
1136 Points ∼18% +3%
Asus X555LD-XX283H
GeForce 820M, 4010U, Hitachi Travelstar Z5K500 HTS545050A7E680
1531 Points ∼25% +38%
Asus F555LD-XX243H
GeForce 820M, 4010U, Seagate Momentus SpinPoint M8 ST1000LM024 HN-M101MBB
1660 Points ∼27% +50%
Octane V2 - Total Score (sort by value)
Acer Aspire E5-521-60Y6
Radeon R4 (Beema), A6-6310, WDC Scorpio Blue WD10JPVX-22JC3T0
5574 Points ∼11%
Toshiba Satellite L50D-B-12Z
Radeon R4 (Beema), A6-6310, Toshiba MQ01ABF050
5575 Points ∼11% 0%
HP 355 G2
Radeon R5 M240, A8-6410, Toshiba MQ01ABF050
6074 Points ∼12% +9%
Asus X555LD-XX283H
GeForce 820M, 4010U, Hitachi Travelstar Z5K500 HTS545050A7E680
7213 Points ∼15% +29%
Acer Aspire E5-551G-F1EW
Radeon R7 M265, FX-7500, Seagate ST1000LM014 Solid State Hybrid Drive
8302 Points ∼17% +49%
Asus F555LD-XX243H
GeForce 820M, 4010U, Seagate Momentus SpinPoint M8 ST1000LM024 HN-M101MBB
7672 Points ∼15% +38%
Mozilla Kraken 1.1 - Total Score (sort by value)
Acer Aspire E5-521-60Y6
Radeon R4 (Beema), A6-6310, WDC Scorpio Blue WD10JPVX-22JC3T0
6278.9 ms * ∼11%
Toshiba Satellite L50D-B-12Z
Radeon R4 (Beema), A6-6310, Toshiba MQ01ABF050
6468.4 ms * ∼11% -3%
HP 355 G2
Radeon R5 M240, A8-6410, Toshiba MQ01ABF050
6200.1 ms * ∼10% +1%
Asus X555LD-XX283H
GeForce 820M, 4010U, Hitachi Travelstar Z5K500 HTS545050A7E680
4164.3 ms * ∼7% +34%
Acer Aspire E5-551G-F1EW
Radeon R7 M265, FX-7500, Seagate ST1000LM014 Solid State Hybrid Drive
4430.4 ms * ∼7% +29%
Asus F555LD-XX243H
GeForce 820M, 4010U, Seagate Momentus SpinPoint M8 ST1000LM024 HN-M101MBB
4061 ms * ∼7% +35%

* ... smaller is better

System Performance

The system ran smoothly and we did not experience any problems. The PCMark benchmark scores are good and are on par with the results of a comparable laptop, such as the Satellite L50D-B-12Z. Replacing the hard drive with a solid state drive can increase the system performance of both laptops.

PCMark 8 Home Score Accelerated v2
1946 points
PCMark 8 Creative Score Accelerated v2
1976 points
PCMark 8 Work Score Accelerated v2
2759 points
Help
PCMark 8 - Home Score Accelerated v2 (sort by value)
Acer Aspire E5-521-60Y6
Radeon R4 (Beema), A6-6310, WDC Scorpio Blue WD10JPVX-22JC3T0
1946 Points ∼32%
Toshiba Satellite L50D-B-12Z
Radeon R4 (Beema), A6-6310, Toshiba MQ01ABF050
1933 Points ∼32% -1%
Acer Extensa 2510-34Z4
HD Graphics 4400, 4030U, Western Digital Scorpio Blue WD5000LPVX
2092 Points ∼34% +8%
Asus X555LD-XX283H
GeForce 820M, 4010U, Hitachi Travelstar Z5K500 HTS545050A7E680
2101 Points ∼34% +8%
Asus F555LD-XX243H
GeForce 820M, 4010U, Seagate Momentus SpinPoint M8 ST1000LM024 HN-M101MBB
2335 Points ∼38% +20%
HP 355 G2
Radeon R5 M240, A8-6410, Toshiba MQ01ABF050
2451 Points ∼40% +26%
Acer Aspire E5-551G-F1EW
Radeon R7 M265, FX-7500, Seagate ST1000LM014 Solid State Hybrid Drive
2685 Points ∼44% +38%
Lenovo IdeaPad G50-70
Radeon R5 M230, 4200U, Seagate Momentus Thin ST500LT012-1DG142
2974 Points ∼49% +53%
HP 350 G1
Radeon HD 8670M, 4210U, Seagate Momentus ST750LM022 HN-M750MB
3088 Points ∼51% +59%

Storage Devices

A hard drive from Western Digital is in the Aspire. It has a capacity of 1 TB and spins with 5400 revolutions per minute. The drive's transfer rates are on the usual level for a 5400 rpm drive.

WDC Scorpio Blue WD10JPVX-22JC3T0
Transfer Rate Minimum: 27.3 MB/s
Transfer Rate Maximum: 123.3 MB/s
Transfer Rate Average: 83.8 MB/s
Access Time: 17.3 ms
Burst Rate: 191.9 MB/s
CPU Usage: 4.4 %

Graphics Card

The Radeon R4 (Beema) graphics core from AMD is responsible for video output. It supports DirectX 11.2 and clocks with speeds of up to 800 MHz. The 3DMark benchmark scores are as expected. They are on par with those of the Satellite L50D-B-12Z that features the same APU. The Radeon GPU's performance is located between Intel's HD Graphics 4200 and HD Graphics 4400 graphics cores. Installing a second working memory module does not lead to a higher graphics performance in either the Aspire or Satellite. The memory controllers of both laptops do not support dual-channel mode and only run in single-channel mode.

3DMark 11 Performance
788 points
3DMark Ice Storm Standard Score
31626 points
3DMark Cloud Gate Standard Score
2853 points
3DMark Fire Strike Score
473 points
Help
3DMark 11 - 1280x720 Performance (sort by value)
Acer Aspire E5-521-60Y6
Radeon R4 (Beema), A6-6310, WDC Scorpio Blue WD10JPVX-22JC3T0
788 Points ∼3%
Toshiba Satellite L50D-B-12Z
Radeon R4 (Beema), A6-6310, Toshiba MQ01ABF050
788 Points ∼3% 0%
HP 355 G2
Radeon R5 M240, A8-6410, Toshiba MQ01ABF050
1640 Points ∼5% +108%
Asus X555LD-XX283H
GeForce 820M, 4010U, Hitachi Travelstar Z5K500 HTS545050A7E680
1349 Points ∼4% +71%
Lenovo IdeaPad Z50-75
Radeon R6 M255DX, A8-7100, WDC Scorpio Blue WD10JPCX-24UE4T0
1857 Points ∼6% +136%
HP 350 G1
Radeon HD 8670M, 4210U, Seagate Momentus ST750LM022 HN-M750MB
1536 Points ∼5% +95%
Asus X555LN-XO112H
GeForce 840M, 4210U, Toshiba MQ01ABF050
2327 Points ∼8% +195%
Acer Aspire E5-551G-F1EW
Radeon R7 M265, FX-7500, Seagate ST1000LM014 Solid State Hybrid Drive
1899 Points ∼6% +141%
Acer Aspire E1-572G-54204G75Mnkk
Radeon HD 8750M, 4200U, TOSHIBA MQ01ABD075
1885 Points ∼6% +139%
Lenovo IdeaPad G50-70
Radeon R5 M230, 4200U, Seagate Momentus Thin ST500LT012-1DG142
1302 Points ∼4% +65%
Asus F555LD-XX243H
GeForce 820M, 4010U, Seagate Momentus SpinPoint M8 ST1000LM024 HN-M101MBB
1353 Points ∼5% +72%
3DMark
1920x1080 Fire Strike Score (sort by value)
Acer Aspire E5-521-60Y6
Radeon R4 (Beema), A6-6310, WDC Scorpio Blue WD10JPVX-22JC3T0
473 Points ∼2%
Toshiba Satellite L50D-B-12Z
Radeon R4 (Beema), A6-6310, Toshiba MQ01ABF050
460 Points ∼2% -3%
HP 355 G2
Radeon R5 M240, A8-6410, Toshiba MQ01ABF050
843 Points ∼3% +78%
Asus X555LD-XX283H
GeForce 820M, 4010U, Hitachi Travelstar Z5K500 HTS545050A7E680
829 Points ∼3% +75%
Lenovo IdeaPad Z50-75
Radeon R6 M255DX, A8-7100, WDC Scorpio Blue WD10JPCX-24UE4T0
518 Points ∼2% +10%
HP 350 G1
Radeon HD 8670M, 4210U, Seagate Momentus ST750LM022 HN-M750MB
785 Points ∼3% +66%
Asus X555LN-XO112H
GeForce 840M, 4210U, Toshiba MQ01ABF050
1350 Points ∼5% +185%
Acer Aspire E5-551G-F1EW
Radeon R7 M265, FX-7500, Seagate ST1000LM014 Solid State Hybrid Drive
1207 Points ∼5% +155%
Acer Aspire E1-572G-54204G75Mnkk
Radeon HD 8750M, 4200U, TOSHIBA MQ01ABD075
1209 Points ∼5% +156%
Lenovo IdeaPad G50-70
Radeon R5 M230, 4200U, Seagate Momentus Thin ST500LT012-1DG142
720 Points ∼3% +52%
Asus F555LD-XX243H
GeForce 820M, 4010U, Seagate Momentus SpinPoint M8 ST1000LM024 HN-M101MBB
829 Points ∼3% +75%
1280x720 Sky Diver Score (sort by value)
Acer Aspire E5-521-60Y6
Radeon R4 (Beema), A6-6310, WDC Scorpio Blue WD10JPVX-22JC3T0
1846 Points ∼3%
Toshiba Satellite L50D-B-12Z
Radeon R4 (Beema), A6-6310, Toshiba MQ01ABF050
1849 Points ∼3% 0%
HP 355 G2
Radeon R5 M240, A8-6410, Toshiba MQ01ABF050
1780 Points ∼3% -4%
Asus X555LD-XX283H
GeForce 820M, 4010U, Hitachi Travelstar Z5K500 HTS545050A7E680
2872 Points ∼5% +56%
Lenovo IdeaPad Z50-75
Radeon R6 M255DX, A8-7100, WDC Scorpio Blue WD10JPCX-24UE4T0
1722 Points ∼3% -7%
HP 350 G1
Radeon HD 8670M, 4210U, Seagate Momentus ST750LM022 HN-M750MB
2359 Points ∼4% +28%
Asus X555LN-XO112H
GeForce 840M, 4210U, Toshiba MQ01ABF050
5069 Points ∼10% +175%
Acer Aspire E5-551G-F1EW
Radeon R7 M265, FX-7500, Seagate ST1000LM014 Solid State Hybrid Drive
4117 Points ∼8% +123%
Asus F555LD-XX243H
GeForce 820M, 4010U, Seagate Momentus SpinPoint M8 ST1000LM024 HN-M101MBB
2892 Points ∼5% +57%
1280x720 Cloud Gate Standard Score (sort by value)
Acer Aspire E5-521-60Y6
Radeon R4 (Beema), A6-6310, WDC Scorpio Blue WD10JPVX-22JC3T0
2853 Points ∼6%
Toshiba Satellite L50D-B-12Z
Radeon R4 (Beema), A6-6310, Toshiba MQ01ABF050
2856 Points ∼6% 0%
HP 355 G2
Radeon R5 M240, A8-6410, Toshiba MQ01ABF050
4032 Points ∼8% +41%
Asus X555LD-XX283H
GeForce 820M, 4010U, Hitachi Travelstar Z5K500 HTS545050A7E680
3954 Points ∼8% +39%
Lenovo IdeaPad Z50-75
Radeon R6 M255DX, A8-7100, WDC Scorpio Blue WD10JPCX-24UE4T0
2663 Points ∼5% -7%
HP 350 G1
Radeon HD 8670M, 4210U, Seagate Momentus ST750LM022 HN-M750MB
4322 Points ∼9% +51%
Asus X555LN-XO112H
GeForce 840M, 4210U, Toshiba MQ01ABF050
5634 Points ∼11% +97%
Acer Aspire E5-551G-F1EW
Radeon R7 M265, FX-7500, Seagate ST1000LM014 Solid State Hybrid Drive
4561 Points ∼9% +60%
Acer Aspire E1-572G-54204G75Mnkk
Radeon HD 8750M, 4200U, TOSHIBA MQ01ABD075
5433 Points ∼11% +90%
Lenovo IdeaPad G50-70
Radeon R5 M230, 4200U, Seagate Momentus Thin ST500LT012-1DG142
3899 Points ∼8% +37%
Asus F555LD-XX243H
GeForce 820M, 4010U, Seagate Momentus SpinPoint M8 ST1000LM024 HN-M101MBB
3942 Points ∼8% +38%
1280x720 Ice Storm Standard Score (sort by value)
Acer Aspire E5-521-60Y6
Radeon R4 (Beema), A6-6310, WDC Scorpio Blue WD10JPVX-22JC3T0
31626 Points ∼3%
Toshiba Satellite L50D-B-12Z
Radeon R4 (Beema), A6-6310, Toshiba MQ01ABF050
32665 Points ∼3% +3%
HP 355 G2
Radeon R5 M240, A8-6410, Toshiba MQ01ABF050
39458 Points ∼4% +25%
Asus X555LD-XX283H
GeForce 820M, 4010U, Hitachi Travelstar Z5K500 HTS545050A7E680
42918 Points ∼4% +36%
Lenovo IdeaPad Z50-75
Radeon R6 M255DX, A8-7100, WDC Scorpio Blue WD10JPCX-24UE4T0
26540 Points ∼2% -16%
HP 350 G1
Radeon HD 8670M, 4210U, Seagate Momentus ST750LM022 HN-M750MB
42536 Points ∼4% +34%
Asus X555LN-XO112H
GeForce 840M, 4210U, Toshiba MQ01ABF050
59788 Points ∼5% +89%
Acer Aspire E5-551G-F1EW
Radeon R7 M265, FX-7500, Seagate ST1000LM014 Solid State Hybrid Drive
35590 Points ∼3% +13%
Acer Aspire E1-572G-54204G75Mnkk
Radeon HD 8750M, 4200U, TOSHIBA MQ01ABD075
50492 Points ∼5% +60%
Lenovo IdeaPad G50-70
Radeon R5 M230, 4200U, Seagate Momentus Thin ST500LT012-1DG142
44899 Points ∼4% +42%
Asus F555LD-XX243H
GeForce 820M, 4010U, Seagate Momentus SpinPoint M8 ST1000LM024 HN-M101MBB
45538 Points ∼4% +44%

Gaming Performance

The APU installed in the Aspire can smoothly render some games in a low resolution and low quality settings. That, however, only involves games that have a low hardware requirement, such as Dirt 3. An up-to-date game like Evolve is not playable since it needs considerably higher-performance hardware.

low med. high ultra
Tomb Raider (2013) 31.222.511.7fps
Evolve (2015) 11.17.5fps

Emissions

System Noise

Positive: The Aspire belongs to the very quiet laptops. The fan is usually off in idle mode, and only the hard drive's noise is audible. Replacing the hard drive with a solid state drive would ensure silence. However, the fan is barely heard during load; we measured a noise level of 34.4 dB in the stress test (Prime95 and Furmark run for at least one hour) - some laptops do not even manage that rate when idling.

Noise Level

Idle
32.9 / 32.9 / 32.9 dB(A)
DVD
38 / dB(A)
Load
33.6 / 34.4 dB(A)
  red to green bar
 
 
30 dB
silent
40 dB(A)
audible
50 dB(A)
loud
 
min: dark, med: mid, max: light   Voltcraft sl-320 (15 cm distance)

Temperature

The Aspire in the stress test
The Aspire in the stress test

The Aspire performed the stress test (Prime95 and Furmark run for at least one hour) in AC and battery modes in different ways. The graphics core clocked with 800 MHz and the processor with 1.4 GHz in AC mode. In battery mode, the GPU operated with 400 MHz while the APU started the test with 1.4 GHz but throttled in the course of the test. The Aspire barely heated up during the stress test. 40 °C was only surpassed at one measuring point on the underside (vent area).

 23.4 °C
74 F
23 °C
73 F
22.5 °C
73 F
 
 24.3 °C
76 F
24.8 °C
77 F
23.1 °C
74 F
 
 24.9 °C
77 F
25.6 °C
78 F
27.5 °C
82 F
 
Maximum: 27.5 °C = 82 F
Average: 24.3 °C = 76 F
22.7 °C
73 F
24 °C
75 F
23.6 °C
74 F
23.5 °C
74 F
26.6 °C
80 F
27.6 °C
82 F
28 °C
82 F
28.7 °C
84 F
24.6 °C
76 F
Maximum: 28.7 °C = 84 F
Average: 25.5 °C = 78 F
Power Supply (max.)  29.5 °C = 85 F | Room Temperature 20.7 °C = 69 F | Voltcraft IR-360

Energy Management

Power Consumption

The idle power consumption is clearly below 10 watts. The Aspire did not consume much power during the stress test (Prime95 and Furmark run for at least one hour), either. We measured a rate of 23.7 watts. This rate is owed to the fact that the CPU clocked with a throttled speed in the stress test.

Power Consumption
Off / Standbydarklight 0.2 / 0.2 Watt
Idledarkmidlight 4 / 6.5 / 7.5 Watt
Load midlight 19.9 / 23.7 Watt
 color bar
Key: min: dark, med: mid, max: light        Voltcraft VC 940

Battery Runtime

Websites are opened automatically every 40 seconds in the real-life Wi-Fi test. The energy-saving profile is enabled, and the screen's brightness is set to approximately 150 cd/m². The Aspire achieved a runtime of 7:07 hours here - a very good rate.

Battery Runtime
WiFi Surfing
7h 07min
Battery Runtime - WiFi (sort by value)
Acer Aspire E5-521-60Y6
Radeon R4 (Beema), A6-6310, WDC Scorpio Blue WD10JPVX-22JC3T0
427 min ∼109%
Lenovo IdeaPad Z50-75
Radeon R6 M255DX, A8-7100, WDC Scorpio Blue WD10JPCX-24UE4T0
155 min ∼40%
Asus F555LD-XX243H
GeForce 820M, 4010U, Seagate Momentus SpinPoint M8 ST1000LM024 HN-M101MBB
254 min ∼65%
Asus X555LD-XX283H
GeForce 820M, 4010U, Hitachi Travelstar Z5K500 HTS545050A7E680
262 min ∼67%
Acer Aspire E5-551G-F1EW
Radeon R7 M265, FX-7500, Seagate ST1000LM014 Solid State Hybrid Drive
272 min ∼70%
HP 355 G2
Radeon R5 M240, A8-6410, Toshiba MQ01ABF050
283 min ∼72%
HP 350 G1
Radeon HD 8670M, 4210U, Seagate Momentus ST750LM022 HN-M750MB
301 min ∼77%
Lenovo IdeaPad G50-70
Radeon R5 M230, 4200U, Seagate Momentus Thin ST500LT012-1DG142
344 min ∼88%
Toshiba Satellite L50D-B-12Z
Radeon R4 (Beema), A6-6310, Toshiba MQ01ABF050
345 min ∼88%
Acer Extensa 2510-34Z4
HD Graphics 4400, 4030U, Western Digital Scorpio Blue WD5000LPVX
391 min ∼100%

Verdict

Buyers looking for an affordable 15.6-inch office laptop will not make a big mistake with the Aspire E5-521-60Y6. The laptop provides enough computing power for routine. At the same time, it barely heats up and is always quiet, and it also sports decent input devices and a very good battery life. The owner will not be wanting extra storage capacity very soon owing to the 1 TB hard drive. Not to be disregarded: Acer includes a two-year warranty, which is not a matter of course in the low-cost sector. Unfortunately, Acer shoots itself in the foot with the installed screen and prevents a better rating with that. It can only offer a very low brightness and low contrast. At least it is a model with a matte surface.

We recently tested Toshiba's Satellite L50D-B-12Z, which is a contender that sports the same APU as the Aspire. We would always prefer the Aspire over the Satellite. It has more to offer in total: The Aspire is 30 to 40 Euros (~$32 to ~$43) cheaper than the Satellite, has a larger hard drive, offers longer battery runtimes, features a matte screen, and it includes a two-year warranty.

Price Comparison

Pricecompare

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In review: Acer Aspire E5-521-60Y6. Test model courtesy of AMD.
In review: Acer Aspire E5-521-60Y6. Test model courtesy of AMD.

Specifications

Acer Aspire E5-521-60Y6 (Aspire E15 Series)
Processor
Graphics adapter
AMD Radeon R4 (Beema), Core: 200-800 MHz, single-channel, Catalyst Omega 14.12 (14.501.1003.0)
Memory
4096 MB 
, DDR3, single-channel, two memory banks (one bank filled)
Display
15.6 inch 16:9, 1366 x 768 pixel, Chi Mei N156BGE-E31, TN LED, glossy: no
Storage
WDC Scorpio Blue WD10JPVX-22JC3T0, 1024 GB 
, 5400 rpm, 880 GB free
Soundcard
AMD Hudson-3 FCH High Definition Audio Controller
Connections
2 USB 2.0, 1 USB 3.0 / 3.1 Gen1, 1 VGA, 1 HDMI, 1 Kensington Lock, Audio Connections: combo audio, Card Reader: SD, Sensors: brightness sensor
Networking
Realtek RTL8168/8111 Gigabit-LAN (10/100/1000MBit), Atheros Communications AR9565 Wireless Network Adapter (b/g/n), Bluetooth 4.0
Optical drive
Matshita DVD-RAM UJ8E2Q
Size
height x width x depth (in mm): 25.3 x 381.6 x 256 ( = 1 x 15.02 x 10.08 in)
Battery
56 Wh Lithium-Ion, 11.1 V, 5000 mAh
Operating System
Microsoft Windows 8.1 64 Bit
Camera
Webcam: HD webcam
Additional features
Speakers: stereo, Keyboard: chiclet, Keyboard Light: no, Security (trial), MS Office (trial) , 24 Months Warranty
Weight
2.3 kg ( = 81.13 oz / 5.07 pounds), Power Supply: 394 g ( = 13.9 oz / 0.87 pounds)
Price
400 Euro

 

Similar Laptops

Similar devices from a different Manufacturer

Devices with the same GPU

Acer Aspire E17 E5-721-69FX Notebook Review
Radeon R4 (Beema), A-Series A6-6310, 17.3", 3 kg

Devices with Same Screen Size and/or Weight

Acer Aspire 3 A315-51 (i3-8130U, SSD, FHD) Laptop Review
UHD Graphics 620, Core i3 8130U, 15.6", 2.1 kg

Links

  • Manufacturer's information

Pros

+Matte screen
+Quiet operating noise
+Low temperature development
+Plenty of storage
+Very good battery life
 

Cons

-Dark, low-contrast screen

Shortcut

What we like

The long battery life and low noise development.

What we'd like to see

A brighter, higher-contrast screen.

What surprises us

It is beyond comprehension how Acer came up with the idea of installing such a dark and low-contrast screen.

The competition

Toshiba Satellite L50D-B-12ZHP 355 G2Asus X555LDLenovo IdeaPad Z50-75Acer Aspire E5-551G-F1EWLenovo IdeaPad G50-70,  HP 350 G1Acer Aspire E1-572G.

Rating

Acer Aspire E5-521-60Y6 - 02/23/2015 v4(old)
Sascha Mölck

Chassis
78 / 98 → 80%
Keyboard
75%
Pointing Device
83%
Connectivity
67 / 80 → 84%
Weight
61 / 20-67 → 87%
Battery
90%
Display
73%
Games Performance
60 / 68 → 88%
Application Performance
56 / 92 → 61%
Temperature
92%
Noise
88%
Audio
54%
Camera
58 / 85 → 68%
Average
72%
78%
Office - Weighted Average
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> Notebook / Laptop Reviews and News > Reviews > Archive of our own reviews > Acer Aspire E5-521 Notebook Review
Sascha Mölck, 2015-03- 7 (Update: 2018-05-15)