Porsche Design Acer Book RS review

I wouldn’t throw Acer into the stylish category of laptops, and even with Porsche Design taking the lead, the Porsche Design Acer Book RS doesn’t really succeed at what it sets out to do.

Don’t get me wrong, the Porsche Design Acer Book RS offers excellent performance, long lasting battery life and a comfortable keyboard to boot. However, it costs a whopping $1,399 just for a Core i5 processor and 8GB of RAM. That price is due to the unique design, and I personally don’t even think it looks good. To top it off, the display and speakers aren’t really up to par in the premium category.

The Porsche Design Acer Book RS is not one of the best laptops around, but if you happen to like the design and are willing to pay for it, the major highlight of this machine is its 13-plus hour long battery life.

Porsche Design Acer Book RS price and configuration options

Porsche Design Acer Book RS specs

Price: $1,399
CPU: Intel Core i5-1135G7
GPU: Intel Iris Xe Graphics
Storage: 512GB
Display: 14-inch, 1920 x 1080
Battery: 13:32
Size: 12.5 x 8.2 x 0.63 inches
Weight: 3.3 pounds 

The model that I reviewed costs $1,399 and is outfitted with an Intel Core i5-1135G7 processor, 8GB of RAM, a 512GB SSD, an Intel Iris Xe Graphics chip and a 14-inch, 1920 x 1080-pixel touchscreen display.

The only other Porsche Design Acer Book RS model you can get is the $1,699 version, which upgrades to a Core i7-1165G7 CPU, an Nvidia GeForce MX350 GPU, 16GB of RAM and a 1TB SSD. That’s a lot of money for those basic parts. Keep in mind that you’re really paying for the “Porsche Design,” whatever that’s worth to you.

If you’re looking for something without an extravagant design choice that’ll be a little cheaper, check out our best laptops under $1,000 and best laptops under $500 pages.

Porsche Design Acer Book RS design

The Porsche Design Acer Book RS features a diamond-cut CNC-machined 3K carbon fiber lid, which looks interesting to say the least. There’s essentially a large carbon fiber rectangle on a silver hood. Above it is a glossy Porsche Design logo, and within the carbon fiber at the bottom is a blacked-out Acer logo. I’m personally not a fan, because it doesn’t take a lot of creativity to make a lid out of carbon fiber. I asked my fiancée her thoughts and she said, “Porsche should stick to cars.” The hinge, however, does bring a bit of flair to the design, as it actually features a sports car aesthetic.

(Image credit: Rami Tabari)

Meanwhile, the interior is a basic silver metal design, with a keyboard at the center, a touchpad at the bottom with an embedded fingerprint sensor, and a Porsche Design logo at the top. The bezels on the display are relatively thin, even with a webcam placed on the top bezel.

At 3.3 pounds and 12.5 x 8.2 x 0.6 inches, the Porsche Design Acer Book RS is a little heavier than its competitors. The Lenovo Yoga 9i (3 pounds, 12.6 x 8.5 x 0.6 inches), HP Spectre x360 14 (3 pounds, 11.8 x 8.7 x 0.7 inches) and Dell XPS 13 9310 (Late 2020) (2.8 pounds, 11.6 x 7.8 x 0.6 inches) were all a bit lighter.

Porsche Design Acer Book RS ports

Despite its slim nature, there’s a decent number of ports on the Porsche Design Acer Book RS.

(Image credit: Rami Tabari)

On the left, there’s the power jack, an HDMI port, one USB Type-A port and a Thunderbolt 3 port, while the right holds room for a Kensington lock slot, one USB Type-A port and a headphone jack.

(Image credit: Rami Tabari)

If you need more ports, check out our best USB Type-C hubs and best laptop docking stations pages.

Porsche Design Acer Book RS display

The Porsche Design Acer Book RS’s 14-inch, 1920 x 1080-pixel display is decently bright and colorful, but it could be better given the price and that the panel is glossy.

(Image credit: Rami Tabari)

In the trailer for The Courier, the yellow stripe on Benedict Cumberbatch’s tie was present, but not necessarily boldly hued. Similarly, there are also blue strips on the tie, but the display is so dim that the blue blends in with the black. It also doesn’t help that I can see myself through the glossy panel. Despite that, the strands of hair combed over on Cumberbatch’s head looked sharp.

According to our colorimeter, the Porsche Design Acer Book RS covered 78.4% of the DCI-P3 color gamut, which is below the 84.7% premium laptop average. However, the Yoga 9i (76%), Spectre x360 (74.6%) and XPS 13 (69.4%) were slighter duller.

At 356 nits, the Porsche Design Acer Book RS fell short of the 391-nit category average. It was a little brighter than the Yoga 9i (334 nits), but not as bright as the Spectre x360 (365 nits) or the XPS 13 (469 nits).

Porsche Design Acer Book RS keyboard, touchpad and touchscreen

When I started typing on the Porsche Design Acer Book RS’s keyboard, I was pleasantly surprised by how clicky and comfortable the keys were. It almost reminded me of typing on an HP EliteBook, which boasts excellent keyboards.

(Image credit: Rami Tabari)

I hit 71 words per minute on the 10fastfingers.com typing test, which is below my current 78-wpm. It was low because my index finger had a lovely gash at the time of writing. The keys themselves don’t have very deep travel, but they are clicky and deliver solid feedback.

The touch screen panel is relatively smooth to the touch, but gets occasionally sticky. I drew a poor little farm with my finger, which looked as OK as a farm could look if it was drawn by a child.

The 4.1 x 2.5-inch touchpad is also smooth, but unfortunately, it has some give when it’s not being clicked. So if I gently lay my finger on it, it depresses slightly. And when clicking it, the trackpad felt stiff and unsatisfying. There’s also a fingerprint reader embedded within the touchpad, so there’s not a lot of real estate to begin with.

Porsche Design Acer Book RS audio

Unfortunately, the Porsche Design Acer Book RS’s bottom-firing speakers deliver hollow sound without much bass.

I listened to Raon Lee’s cover of “Hated by life itself,” and the first thing I noticed was the super sharp piano opening followed by the equally piercing cymbals that introduced the percussion. The vocals were clear, but there wasn’t much depth. While the speakers did get loud, almost all of the instruments were overshadowed by the vocals.

The DTS Audio Processing app comes with the laptop, but it didn’t help achieve a healthy sound. There are three presets: Music, Movies and Games. There’s also a Custom Audio preset, which lets you tinker with the stereo sound spaciousness, the treble, the vocals and the bass.

Porsche Design Acer Book RS performance

Despite its price, the Porsche Design Acer Book RS is packing a mere Intel Core i5-1135G7 processor with 8GB of RAM. While we expected something stronger for the price, this CPU isn’t anything to scoff at. It managed to handle 40 Google Chrome tabs and five 1080p YouTube videos at once without issue.

(Image credit: Rami Tabari)

On the Geekbench 5.0 overall performance test, the Porsche Design Acer Book RS scored 5,347, surpassing the premium laptop average (4,132). It fell short against the Yoga 9i’s Core i7-1185G7 (5,440), but it managed to climb over the Core i7-1165G7 in the Spectre x360 (5004) and XPS 13 (5,254).

The Porsche Design Acer Book RS transcoded a 4K video to 1080p in 14 minutes and 9 seconds on our HandBrake benchmark, which is faster than the category average (17:10). It even completed it faster than the Yoga 9i (14:24), the Spectre x360 (17:02) and the XPS 13 (18:22).

Acer’s 512GB SSD has a transfer rate of 512 megabytes per second, which doesn’t match up against the average premium laptop (816 MBps). The SSDs in the Yoga 9i (1,448 MBps), Spectre x360 (1,423) and XPS 13 (729 MBps) were also significantly faster.

Porsche Design Acer Book RS graphics

The Intel Iris Xe Graphics chip in the Porsche Design Acer Book RS scored 4,319 on the 3DMark Fire Strike synthetic graphics benchmark test, which lags behind the 4,554 premium laptop average. It also fell short of the Yoga 9i (5,014), but sped past the Spectre x360 (4,229) and XPS 13 9310 (3,598), which all had the same integrated GPU.

Meanwhile, on the Sid Meier’s Civilization VI: Gathering Storm benchmark (Medium, 1080p), the Porsche Design Acer Book RS actually averaged 48 frames per second, blowing away the category average (28 fps) as well as the Yoga 9i (25 fps), Spectre x360 14 (20 fps) and XPS 13 (16 fps).

Porsche Design Acer Book RS battery life

While I don’t think its design is necessarily worth the price, the Porsche Design Acer Book RS does boast something that many laptops don’t: amazing battery life. This sports car laptop lasted 13 hours and 32 minutes on the Laptop Mag battery test, crushing the 10:12 premium laptop average. The Yoga 9i (11:15), Spectre x360 (12:11) and XPS 13 (11:07) didn’t come close.

Porsche Design Acer Book RS webcam

The 720p webcam on the Porsche Design Acer Book RS is as bad as you might imagine.

(Image credit: Rami Tabari)

The test shot I took completely blurred out my sweater, removing any and all detail. The image was also plagued with RGB blotches all over. As far as contrast goes, my face was well-lit, but the window behind me was completely blown out despite the blinds being closed.

Porsche Design Acer Book RS heat

Unlike the engine of a car, the Porsche Design Acer Book RS was cool under pressure. After streaming a video for 15 minutes, the underside hit 85 degrees Fahrenheit, which happens to be the hottest it got. That is safely below our 95-degree comfort threshold. The center of the keyboard and touchpad measured 78 and 71 degrees, respectively.

Porsche Design Acer Book RS software and warranty

Like other Acer laptops, the Porsche Design Acer Book RS comes packed with a ton of branded software. There’s the Acer Care Center, which lets you check up on your warranty and offers checkup and tuneup tools for your system. Acer Jump Start gives you a Windows 10 tutorial and Acer Product Registration gives you access to deals and warranty promotions.

There’s also Windows 10 bloatware, like Hidden City, Hulu and Roblox.

The Porsche Design Acer Book RS comes with a one-year limited warranty. See how Acer performed on our Tech Support Showdown and Best and Worst Brands ranking.

Bottom line

For better or worse, the Porsche Design Acer Book RS is a unique laptop. Of course, great performance, stellar endurance and a comfortable keyboard push it along. However, it costs a pretty penny for a not-so-pretty design. Plus, the display and speakers could certainly be better.

Our advice? Save a few bucks and get the Yoga 9i. You’ll get a Core i7 CPU, double the RAM and a great speaker packed into a seamless 2-in-1 chassis. Or if design matters most, get the Spectre x360 14, which does luxury better than this Porsche.  

However, if you actually like the Porsche Design Acer Book RS’s design, it does have some positive aspects, especially its 13+ hour long battery life.


About the Author: wp4laptop

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