• Operating System: Windows 10 Home
  • Display: 15.6-inch Full HD LCD
  • Processor: Intel Core i7-7700HQ
  • Connectivity: IEEE 802.11ac / LAN
  • Memory: 8GB (Max 32GB)
  • Storage: 1TB HDD + 256GB SSD
  • Graphics: NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060
  • Dimensions: 26.8 x 390 x 266 m
  • Weight: 2.70 kg
  • Pros:
  • Does what it sets out to do
  • Cons:
  • Fingerprint magnet chassis design
  • Benchmark Results
  • PCMark10 Essentials: 7,296 points
  • PCMark10 Productivity: 6,725 points
  • PCMark10 Digital Content Creation: 5,470 points
  • 3DMark TimeSpy: 3,815 points
  • 3DMark FireStrike Ultra: 2,774 points

The Sun Is Now Your Prey

For many, Acer has been their go to brand when it comes to affordable laptops, but for their Predator series, they have upped the ante for the components built into the laptop. With that, the price has increased as well.

The Helios comes with your regular looking Predator design of black body with red trims. Sadly, not much thought has been given to the design of the laptop to make it particularly different from other laptops, aside from a few minor differences in trims and the fan exhaust. But then again, there is beauty in simplicity and in familiarity. It sports a 15.6-inch Full HD display, an Intel 7th Gen i7 processor, 8GB of RAM which can be upgraded to 32GB, ample storage, and is powered by an NVIDIA GeForce GTX1060.

Onto the gaming side of things, it handles as well as you would expect, with not many dips in FPS when playing Battlefield 1 or Witcher 3. It is also worth mentioning that the fans do get slightly loud when it comes to gaming as you need the fan to run at full speed to keep your laptop cool. Luckily, the wrist rest area and keyboard area remained cool, as to give you a comfortable gaming experience. However, the touchpad is a little finicky as it is slightly harder to click into, but can be solved with a simple addition of an external mouse.

Wrapped around the sides is a healthy number of I/O ports, including a HDMI port, and four USB ports, with one of them a USB Type-C port for compatible devices. A card reader can also be found on the side of the device as well, along with a LAN port.

A major demerit to the chassis is that it’s a fingerprint magnet. If you want to keep it in pristine condition, you will need to clean it every now and then, especially if the Helios 300 is the main machine that you take to work and use at home. While issue could be easily solved with either a skin or a laptop cover, those are rarely seen nowadays.

At only 2.7 kg, the laptop is not too heavy that you can’t lugged it around for your everyday travels. And with a GTX 1060, it can handle most games that you throw at it, provided that you do not configure every setting to Ultra for your games.

CHIP CONCLUDE: A decent gaming laptop that does well in gaming without pulling any extraordinary punches and remains relatively cool, even if it is on the louder side of things, which can easily be drowned out by music.

(previously published in issue December 2017)

Acer Predator Helios 300