Acer Predator Helios 300: A midrange gaming laptop with awful battery life and disappointing speakers
Acer has given its Predator Helios 300 a fresh look this year, along with updated internal components. The update comes in 15.6-inch and 17.3-inch flavours, although we have based our opinions on the 15.6-inch model that we recently reviewed. The new design has a more modern look than the Helios 300 we reviewed last year, primarily because of its higher screen-to-body ratio. Acer has switched from red to blue accents this year too.
Acer kindly provided us with the Predator Helios 300 PH315-52-79TY for our review, which comes with a Core i7-9750H procesor, a GeForce GTX 1660 Ti GPU, 8 GB of RAM and a 512 GB SSD. Acer does not currently sell an identical model in the US, but the closest versions are the H315-52-78VL and PH315-52-72RG. Both offer 16 GB of RAM, but the former has a 256 GB SSD, whereas the latter has a 512 GB drive. Regardless of RAM and storage, all versions of the Helios 300 with a GeForce GTX 1660 Ti will be powerful enough to play triple-A games at 1080p and on high graphics presets. Acer offers the Helios 300 with a GeForce RTX 2060 or GeForce RTX 2070 too, which should both be powerful enough for some 1440p gaming.
The series has its shortcomings, though. Setting aside that our review unit suffers from noticeable backlight bleeding, its power consumption when idling is excessively high, as it is under moderate load too. Acer equips the device with a 58 Wh battery, a capacity that the Helios 300 ate through in around 3:30 hours during our practical Wi-Fi battery life test. Moreover, the series has weak speakers, so we would recommend using headphones when gaming, where possible. Additionally, the port placement is not ideal, so you may find your external mouse tripping over other cables, regardless of the hand with which you hold it. Furthermore, its CPU and GPU performance is middle of the road at best for a device of its calibre.
It is not all bad news though, as our review unit has a colour accurate and 144 Hz panel, while we are fans of its keyboard and trackpad too. You can read our full thoughts on the latest Helios 300 in our corresponding review.