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Using the Acer Aspire 5 A515-56-347N: 15.6’ display with and i3-1115G4 CPU (2024)

My thoughts on the Acer Aspire 5 A515-56-347N: performance, display quality, upgradability, and overall value.
Brad Cheston

Cartesian Mathematics Foundation


January 8, 2024


I recently got my hands on the Acer Aspire 5, and I’ve been using it as my daily driver for work and general use. I quite appreciate a good balance between affordability and functionality. From its multitasking power to its nifty ergonomic keyboard, the Aspire 5 is quite a good laptop overall. However, it’s not without its limitations, especially when it comes to storage and memory upgrades.


Property Value Property Value
Brand acer Model Name A515-56-347N
Screen Size 15.6 Inches Color Silver
Hard Disk Size 128 GB CPU Model Core I3 1115G4
Ram Memory Installed Size 8 GB Operating System Windows 11 S
Special Feature HD Audio Graphics Card Description Integrated


Click on photos to enlarge them:

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Performance and Productivity

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When it comes to performance and productivity, my experience with the Acer Aspire 5 has been a largely positive journey, albeit with a few trade-offs to consider.


  • Impressive multitasking capabilities

  • Turbo Boost Technology elevates processor performance

  • Reliable Wi-Fi 6 connectivity

  • Ergonomic keyboard design for comfortable use


  • Entry-level model not suited for intense gaming or heavy graphics work

  • Limited base storage might necessitate external solutions for some users

  • Soldered RAM in the base model eliminates an easy upgrade path

The 11th Generation Intel Core i3-1115G4 Dual Core processor is a nimble workhorse, capable of handling everyday tasks with relative ease. The Turbo Boost Technology is a definite highlight, optimizing speed for demanding applications, which is ideal when juggling multiple work streams. Additionally, the Wi-Fi 6 support makes for a stable, speedy internet connection, invaluable as I depend on cloud services and online research.

An ergonomic angle is crucial for sustained typing, and the Acer’s hinged design meets this need, making extended typing sessions more comfortable and cooling the device effectively. As a writer, I find the keyboard responsive and the typing experience quite satisfactory.

However, I’ve noticed this isn’t a laptop made for the rigors of gaming or graphic-intensive tasks. The base model comes with 8GB DDR4 on-board memory and 128GB NVMe SSD, so while the speed is there, the storage is something you might run out of quickly, especially if you deal with large files. It’s important to note that memory is not user-upgradable since it’s soldered, which could be a drawback if future tasks demand more RAM.

Connectivity options have been ample for my needs. With multiple USB ports and Bluetooth support, I haven’t lacked for options when connecting peripherals. The HDMI port has also been handy for presenting work on larger displays.

The implementation of Acer’s Purified.Voice technology and support for Alexa is a pleasant addition. It’s streamlined my workflow for setting reminders, listening to music, and managing my calendar without the need to stop what I’m doing to fiddle with another device.

Running Windows 11 Home in S mode ensures security is taken care of right out of the box, but this could be seen as a limitation if you require specific software not available in the Microsoft Store. Fortunately, switching out of S mode isn’t an overly complex process.

My verdict? The Acer Aspire 5 champions the balance of power and convenience, excelling in productivity tasks within its range while also keeping a keen eye on the future with up-to-date tech. However, planning for additional storage solutions and accepting the memory limitations are considerations to make before committing to this device.

Display and Aesthetics

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From the moment I unboxed the Acer Aspire 5, the aesthetics caught my eye. The sleek silver chassis has a professional vibe to it, and despite it not having that “high-end” feel, it’s still pretty stylish for its price range. Now, the display - this is one of the key features that make or break a laptop for me. Here’s a quick rundown:

  • 15.6” Full HD IPS display: The resolution is crisp and colors look true to life.

  • Narrow bezels: Gives it a modern look and maximizes screen real estate.

  • Screen-to-body ratio: At 82.58%, it’s clear that Acer aimed to give us more viewable screen space.

The IPS display delivers sharp details and vivid colors. Watching Netflix shows or browsing through photos, I’ve noticed that the visuals are clear and the colors pop quite nicely. The narrow bezels around the screen aren’t just for looks; they actually make the viewing experience more immersive, which is a big plus when you’re working on documents or enjoying media.

However, it’s not all roses. The brightness is sufficient but I wouldn’t mind a bit more, especially when I’m working outdoors. Additionally, the display doesn’t support touch input, a feature that I’ve gotten used to and is definitely missed. But again, for the price point, I understand that every feature can’t be best-in-class.

The ergonomic keyboard design is another highlight. It subtly lifts for a more comfortable typing experience which is much appreciated during long typing sessions. I’ve also found the keyboard to be adequately responsive and the keys have a decent travel distance. That said, the absence of a backlit keyboard is something that I didn’t anticipate missing as much as I do. Typing in dimly lit environments can be a bit of a challenge without it.

As for the speakers, they’re positioned in such a way that sound is directed downwards. While they can be loud enough for personal use, don’t expect premium sound quality here. For better audio during movie watching sessions, I usually connect to an external Bluetooth speaker.

Overall, the Acer Aspire 5 has an aesthetic design and display that exceed expectations, especially at this price point. It blends into a working environment seamlessly, looking more expensive than it is, and provides an enjoyable visual experience. While certain design choices such as no touchscreen, average brightness, and a non-backlit keyboard could be drawbacks for some, the package as a whole offers a balance that leans towards the positive for anyone looking for an affordable, yet diligently designed laptop.

Upgradability and Expansion

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When assessing the Acer Aspire 5, I’m particularly impressed by its potential for upgradability and expansion. Even right out of the box, this laptop offers ample opportunity to enhance its capabilities, which is a real bonus for users like me who may want to boost performance down the line without purchasing a brand-new system. Here’s a breakdown:

  • RAM Upgradability: The Aspire 5 I have comes with 8GB of DDR4 memory, which is sufficient for everyday tasks. However, should the need arise for more demanding applications, or more efficient multitasking, there’s an additional slot available to expand the memory. A nice touch meaning I can easily double the memory if necessary.

  • Storage Expansion: Starting with a 128GB NVMe SSD is great for speed, but I like the option to add more storage. There’s an empty hard drive bay, so I can increase the storage capacity significantly, which is perfect for anyone needing more space for media or work files.

  • Battery Replacement: Batteries wear out over time, and I’m relieved that the Aspire 5’s battery isn’t glued or soldered in—making it replaceable if its lifespan begins to dwindle.

Now, while these aspects are positives, there are some drawbacks to consider. The laptop uses soldered RAM for a portion of its memory, limiting how much you can actually expand. This is something to keep in mind if you’re a user who’s looking for long-term heavy usage, as you might hit a ceiling with performance enhancements.

Moreover, while the existing NVMe SSD is fast, users who require larger, faster storage options may find that the available storage expansion slots don’t support the newer, and faster, PCIe 4.0 NVMe SSDs. This puts a slight damper on future-proofing the device for the very latest in storage technology.

Lastly, there’s an important note about the BIOS updates necessary for some users, especially if you’re thinking of installing an alternative operating system. Updating the BIOS can sometimes be a daunting task for less tech-savvy users, and the lack of a direct .bin file installation option means an additional learning curve to ensure the system is running optimally.

All that said, the Acer Aspire 5 does offer a good balance between current needs and potential for growth. It’s reassuring to purchase a laptop knowing that I won’t be limited by the initial specifications and that there’s the opportunity to adapt the system as my needs evolve. It may not be the absolute top of its class concerning upgradability, but it definitely stands out as a strong contender within its price range.

Price and Overall Value

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When it comes to weighing the price against the overall value of the Acer Aspire 5, it’s a balancing act. Here’s a quick rundown of the main points:

  • Price: The Aspire 5 hits a sweet spot in affordability.

  • Performance: Offers a solid performance for everyday tasks.

  • Design: Portable and sleek, with a decent build.

  • Drawbacks: Not ideal for high-end gaming or heavy multitasking.

I must say, for the modest price, I’m getting a reliable device that adequately meets my needs for everyday computing tasks. The build quality, which includes a sleek design and narrow bezels, offers a portable and visually pleasing experience. Despite not having that “high-end” feel, it doesn’t detract from the fact that it’s a well-rounded machine.

The Aspire 5 has an 11th Gen Intel Core i3 processor, which isn’t the most powerful on the market but certainly packs enough punch for tasks like web browsing, streaming, and document editing. Getting a Full HD IPS display at this price point feels like a steal, providing me with clear and vivid images. This is especially important since I spend considerable time on the computer, and a good display eases eye strain.

However, let’s talk about some limitations. If you’re an avid gamer or a creative professional, the integrated graphics and dual-core processor might not keep up with your demands. Additionally, while the 8GB RAM and 128GB SSD storage is enough for light use, you might feel the squeeze if you’re a heavy user.

For anyone who’s looking for a device that can handle more labor-intensive tasks, it might be worth considering an upgrade or exploring devices with more robust specifications. But, if your expectations align with what the Aspire 5 offers, I think you’ll find it provides excellent value for money.

As far as battery life is concerned, it’s not the 9 hours promised, but it does last a good 5 hours or so, which is reasonable for my workflow. And while the sound quality from the built-in speakers isn’t going to blow you away, it’s perfectly acceptable for casual listening, and you always have the option to connect external speakers or headphones.

In summary, the Acer Aspire 5 is a cost-effective choice for students, writers, and anyone needing a reliable, budget-friendly laptop for light to moderate computing use. After thoroughly scrutinizing the details, considering the price, and accepting its limits, I find the Aspire 5 offers good value and, importantly, matches my expectations for a computer in this price range. It’s proof that you don’t always need to spend a small fortune to tick most of the boxes on your laptop wishlist.