Earlier this year, Acer debuted Intel and Nvidia’s latest and greatest parts in the fearsome, yet portable Predator Triton 500—a $2,600 laptop loaded with just about everything you could ask for. Now those improvements are rolling out through Acer’s entire Predator gaming notebook lineup.
At Tuesday’s [email protected] event, the company revealed revamps of the Predator Triton 300, Predator Helios 700, and the incredibly popular Predator Helios 300, cramming each with Intel’s 10th-gen Core CPUs, Nvidia’s GeForce RTX Super graphics, and blazing-fast screens primed to melt your face in CS:GO.
Here’s what you’ll find inside each of the new laptops.
Acer Predator Helios 700
The slide-out HyperDrift keyboard on the last Predator Helios 700 may seem like a gimmick at first glance, but hey, you can’t call it a gimmick if it works. We loved the radical design in our review. Now Acer’s leveling up the girthy notebook with up to an overclockable Intel Core i9-10980HK and Nvidia’s GeForce RTX 2080 Super and 2070 Super graphics, along with faster 2,933MHz memory (up to 64GB), an extra Thunderbolt 3 port, and Killer’s DoubleShot Pro technology for improved connectivity. Yes please.
Keeping such potent internal hardware cool is no mean feat, even in a plus-sized laptop like the Helios 700. Acer’s rolling out a new cooling solution dubbed “PowerGem” in the Core i9 versions to keep thermals in check. “PowerGem is a special material with 3.83 times more vertical heat conductivity than copper, improving the notebook’s heat emission efficiency,” the company’s press release says. Of course, all models of the Helios 700 still include Acer’s CoolBoost technology and AeroBlade fans, along with a trio of copper heatpipes and a vapor chamber. We won’t know for sure until we get our hands on one, but you have to imagine a traditionally chunky gaming laptop will handle the Core i9/RTX 2080 Super combo much better than the tiny, thermally constrained MSI GS66 Stealth.
The nifty HyperDrift keyboard is sticking around as one of the Helios 700’s defining attributes, along with replaceable keys. This time around, the Helios 700 comes with optional MagTek mechanical switches for the WASD keys and a set of high-precision keycaps designed primarily for racing games, with 1.5mm of curvature for finer movement control. You can swap them out as desired, and racing games would no doubt look swell on the 17.3-inch, 144Hz display.
Look for the Acer Predator Helios 700 to start showing up in the United States in October, with a starting price of $2,400. The sort of hardware this thing’s loaded with doesn’t come cheap.
Acer Predator Helios 300
If you’re looking for something more affordable, the Acer Predator Helios 300 will start at $1,300 when it launches in September. The Helios 300 constantly tops Amazon’s gaming notebook sales charts, and we’ve loved the value-oriented series every time we’ve touched one.
The new-look Helios 300 will ship with 10th-gen Intel processors, graphics up to an overclockable GeForce RTX 2070 Max-Q, and a blistering 240Hz option for the 15.6-inch display. You’ll also be able to configure it with up to 32GB of 2933MHz memory and two PCIe NVME SSDs in RAID 0, along with a 2TB hard drive. Expect the fully stocked model to cost quite a bit more than the baseline version with stats like those.
Acer Predator Triton 300
The Predator Triton 300 will make its U.S. debut this September. On paper, it seems awfully similar to the Helios 300, with the same $1,300 price point, the same Intel and Nvidia chip options, and even a 240Hz screen (albeit one that hits 300 nits’ brightness and 100% of the sRGB color space). But the footprints of the two laptops differ greatly.
While the Helios 300 resembles a traditional chunky gaming notebook, measuring in at over an inch thick and close to six pounds in weight, the Triton 300 tips the scales at a mere 4.63 pounds in a 0.78-inch-thick shell. It’s designed to be much more portable and supports up to a trio of M.2 SSDs, unlike the Helios. We’ll be excited to give it a whirl this fall.
Acer Nitro 7
Acer’s gaming laptop for bargain hunters, the $999 Nitro 7, packs a 0.78-inch-thick chassis like the Triton 300, but it’s denser at 5.5 pounds. This more modest laptop still packs Intel 10th-gen chips yet tops out with Nvidia’s GeForce RTX 2060 graphics. Despite the low price, the Nitro 7 still packs three M.2 SSD slots, up to 32GB of 2,933MHz memory, Wi-Fi 6, and Killer’s ultra-fast ethernet port. Better yet, it, too, comes with a high refresh rate display, with the 15.6-inch screen hitting 144Hz for silky-smooth gameplay. We can definitely get behind the idea of 144Hz becoming the new normal in gaming laptops. Don’t expect G-Sync at this price, though.