Top Secret! These secret GPUs and CPUs are used in Acer's latest gaming laptops.
It is a familiar situation: Manufacturers want to launch new products based on their product cycles, but the chip manufacturers – in this case Intel and Nvidia – are not ready yet, so all information about the main components (especially the designation) has to stay secret for the time being. Numerous accidental leaks in the past show that this does not really work, though. Acer does its best to keep the secrets at the yearly press conference in New York. However, this does not prevent us from connecting all the communicated details about the upcoming notebooks with the already leaked information about upcoming mobile processors from Intel as well as the leaked mobile GPUs from Nvidia. This makes it quite easy to predict the CPUs and GPUs for the new notebooks, so we created the following overview.
Acer Helios 700 and Helios 300 Gaming Notebook
The spec sheet of the new Acer Helios 700 lists new "Intel 9th Gen Core i9 processors for excellent overclocking performance". A look at the newly developed "HyperDrift keyboard", which can be shifted towards the front to reveal two large additional fan intakes for improved cooling, clearly suggests the Intel i9-9980HK CPU for Acer's upcoming gaming flagship. This mobile processor is expected to release in the end of April with 8 cores and a maximum clock of 5 GHz, which can be further overclocked. The Helios 700 starts at 2499 Euros, but we do not think this SKU already includes the i9 CPU.
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The smaller sibling of the Helios 700, the Helios 300 gaming laptops, is also quite interesting. It is supposed to be available with the familiar GeForce RTX 2070 or RTX 2060 Max-Q GPUs, or "the latest GeForce® GTX-GPU", which is not further specified. Based on the logical classification of available graphics adapters, we expect a chip with the performance below the RTX 2060. We guess it is the leaked GeForce GTX 1650 or the expected Nvidia GeForce GTX 1660 Ti, which is supposed to close the performance gap between the new RTX 2060 and the old GTX 1060 or the slower and somewhat outdated 1050 chips (or replace them). The CPU of the Helios 300 will also be a 9th Gen Intel Core i7 processor; we expect the i7-9850H or i7-9750H (both 8-core with a maximum clock of 4.6 or 4.5 GHz, respectively).
Acer Nitro 5 and Nitro 7
The newly announced Nitro models are also shown with new Nvidia GPUs. The current range of the Acer Nitro gets GPUs up to the GTX 1060, so we once again believe the manufacturer will use the smaller GPUs from the Helios models for the high-end Nitro laptops: Nvidia GeForce GTX 1650 or GTX 1660 Ti, respectively. The processors are once again "9th Gen Intel Core processors", but we notice the absence of the addition "i7 or i9". This fact as well as the laptop design itself (comparatively slim at ~20-24mm) suggests the implementation of the upcoming Intel Core i5 processors, which are native quad-cores: Intel Core i5-9400H at up to 4.3 GHz or i5-9300H at up to 4.1 GHz.
Acer Aspire 7, Aspire 5 and Travelmate P614-51
The upcoming Aspire and Travelmate models will not be shipped with new CPUs for now. The specs say 8th Gen Intel Core processors, so we expect the familiar line-up of quad-core CPUs. The Aspire 7 will probably be equipped with GPUs all the way up to the GeForce GTX 1650, while the Aspire 5 will get the Nvidia GeForce MX250 in the faster configuration (1D13) with a 25W TDP. Our recent benchmark results show a similar situation to the GeForce MX150 with two different versions of the GeForce MX250 (we reported). Both GPU versions are currently in review at Notebookcheck, so expect results soon.
We find it very interesting that Acer also wants to use the GeForce MX250 for the new Travelmate P614. It only weighs 1.1 kg in combination with a chassis height of 16.6 millimeters and battery runtimes of up to 20 hours (claimed), so the 14-inch model wants to convince with its qualities as a mobile companion. Acer therefore uses the slower version of the GeForce MX250 (1D52) with a 10W TDP for this specific SKU.