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18 Reviews
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Acer M3 Ultrabook
I have not had this long enough to give a definitive conclusion but the first impressions are very good. I have had no problems with the hardware which is solid, attractive and works very well. I have not had a problem with the on/off switch which some people say can easily be accidentally turned on or off. I agree with the well known criticisms that Windows 8 lacks a...
Published 23 months ago by Mr. B. Tucker

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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Upgradeable
Just a note that when installing Linux, the screen appears black, but it's just that Linux doesn't set the LCD backlight up properly for some Acer laptops, so everytime I start it up, I have to use the keyboard to increase the brightness.

Also, despite what the Acer tech support Website says, it is possible to upgrade the mSATA SSD and install the OS to it. I...
Published on 9 Feb. 2013 by Adrian


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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Acer M3 Ultrabook, 20 May 2013
By 
Mr. B. Tucker (West Sussex, UK) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
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I have not had this long enough to give a definitive conclusion but the first impressions are very good. I have had no problems with the hardware which is solid, attractive and works very well. I have not had a problem with the on/off switch which some people say can easily be accidentally turned on or off. I agree with the well known criticisms that Windows 8 lacks a start button but the suggested solution of selecting the desktop icon only partially gets over the problem since it offers a traditional desktop but not the Windows menu structure. I am waiting to see what the first Windows 8 update will do to solve this issue - I have read it may reintroduce the start button. A huge benefit of Windows 8 is that it boots up very quickly - both cold boots or hot boots from sleep or hibernation are much faster than with W7. I think the fast boot times are partly due to W8 and partly due to the small SSD drive in the ultrabook. As with most Acer PCs this comes with a lot of unnecessary bloatware that takes some time to uninstall. This includes a trial version of a leading anti malware software package. Once this is uninstalled the very good security software included in W8 is is automatically activated. It won't work until the trial package is removed.

One useful piece of software included by Acer allows DVDs to be played - Microsoft has removed DVD playback from W8.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Good laptop; nice design, 6 Dec. 2012
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This review is from: Acer Aspire M3-581TG 15.6-inch Ultrabook - Aluminium (Intel Core i5 3317U 1.7GHz, 4GB RAM, 500GB HDD, DVDSM DL, LAN, WLAN, BT, Webcam, Nvidia Graphics, Windows 8 64-bit) (Personal Computers)
Keys are a little spaced out for my liking (being a developer I spend a fair amount of time typing/using keyboard shortcuts) but its a pretty sound device.
I instantly stripped out the good sized hard drive for a decent sized Samsung SSD; and shoved another 4 gig of ram in it. What i failed to notice (as did the memory scanner from corsair) is that the device has a maximum ram of 6 gig due to one module being user-replaceable and the other being soldered to the motherboard. Bit of a failure in an ultra-book as although not placing both modules as replaceable components probably saved a gram in weight it does mean that I'm left with a laptop with ultra-fast dominator ram on one side, and "what ever the cheapest ram was at the time" soldered to the board.

Nice screen; shame its not IPS, but bright colours; not too shabby on the viewing angle. Pretty amazing at playing games on, something I've never even bothered to attempt with modern game requirements.

Worth the cash.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Upgradeable, 9 Feb. 2013
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This review is from: Acer Aspire M3-581TG 15.6-inch Ultrabook - Aluminium (Intel Core i5 3317U 1.7GHz, 4GB RAM, 500GB HDD, DVDSM DL, LAN, WLAN, BT, Webcam, Nvidia Graphics, Windows 8 64-bit) (Personal Computers)
Just a note that when installing Linux, the screen appears black, but it's just that Linux doesn't set the LCD backlight up properly for some Acer laptops, so everytime I start it up, I have to use the keyboard to increase the brightness.

Also, despite what the Acer tech support Website says, it is possible to upgrade the mSATA SSD and install the OS to it. I replaced the 20GB mSATA SSD with a 256GB SSD and was able to partition it and install Windows 8 and Linux onto the mSATA while still keeping the 500GB spinning disk for bulk storage.

The track pad is spongy, the screen is reflective and has a poor resolution (1366x768) and only the top half of the laptop is made of metal, the base feels cheap and the power connector doesn't feel like it's going to last very long.

Still, happy with the graphics card and storage capability.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars cant shut down, 25 Mar. 2013
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had this laptop for a month and for the second time I am unable to shut it down ( except for manually holding the power button in, then on re-start it shuts down straight away. I had to do a factory re set and lost everything on the hard drive in the process. calls to Acer technical support cost 10 P PER MINUTE ( an outrage) after the second problem asked for a replacement. As usual Amazon were very helpful in dealing with my problem but Acer customer service leaves much to be desired
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Good Budget Laptop for games - So far so good, 31 Jan. 2013
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This review is from: Acer Aspire M3-581TG 15.6-inch Ultrabook - Aluminium (Intel Core i5 3317U 1.7GHz, 4GB RAM, 500GB HDD, DVDSM DL, LAN, WLAN, BT, Webcam, Nvidia Graphics, Windows 8 64-bit) (Personal Computers)
I got this as a replacement for a different model from Acer that didn't work. My prime criteria was a cheap laptop that could play games to a reasonable degree. I am happy to say the laptop does that and I have been playing Battlefield 3 in medium setting with no problems at all. I don't know how it would perform in higher settings but so far so good. it looks really good. If it is a cheap laptop for games you are after this really works and for the price I couldn't find anything better at time of writing.

As for the rest I am happy with the laptop. It looks good and is very thin. I saw the comment on it not really being an Ultrabook but it is very thin and good enough for me.

Finally a point outside the normal review and not part of scoring. I tried to install Windows 7 over Windows 8 and it caused real problems. I had to send it in as it wouldn't turn on afterwards so if you don't want windows 8 - ask for windows 7 beforehand. None of this reflects on the laptop - only on Windows 8!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Rubbish, 23 Sept. 2013
Bought this laptop as an upgrade from windows vista. Laptop never shuts down properly and in the end you have to press the powerr button to turn off, very slow even with upgraded 10mb ram and dedicated ssd. Very disappointed.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Can't say anything bad, 31 May 2013
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When you buy a laptop you look at the specs and it does what it says, so I can't say anything bad about it.

The only issues I have are to do with the size.The keyboard is too spread out and the "mouse" is annoying. I keep changing windows and zooming in and out without meaning to.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Good specs, decent look, horrible ergonomics, 20 Mar. 2013
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Acer Aspire M3-581TG 15.6-inch Ultrabook - Aluminium (Intel Core i5 3317U 1.7GHz, 4GB RAM, 500GB HDD, DVDSM DL, LAN, WLAN, BT, Webcam, Nvidia Graphics, Windows 8 64-bit) (Personal Computers)
This laptop has very good specs (except the screen) - fast CPU, dedicated video, excellent battery lifetime (truly 7-8 hours on low load, 2-3 hours 3D gaming), DVD drive, USB 3.0, big multitouch touchpad.

Outfit is very decent - slim, lightweight (for the 15" laptop), nice keyboard. But the lid tends to keep finger smears.

The touchpad is foamy and mine was a bit crumpled (yes, sounds weird) - looks untidy.

Ergonomics... the worst I've ever seen. Absolutely everything is wrong:
- ALL connectors are at rear. Want to plug a USB stick? Rotate the laptop. Connect a second screen? Half close the lid and bend over it to see something. Plug in the charger? Right... you know what to do
- power-on and charge indicators located on the front so you can see them only if you lift the laptop
- concealed power-on button which you can't see when you open the lid
- couple of times I managed to push the power button simply when moving the laptop a bit away from myself (as the button is on the front)
- nearly impossible to open the DVD tray without looking at it first to find the eject button as it's not raised at all and extremely hard to find by touching
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4.0 out of 5 stars Great service, 30 Dec. 2013
This review is from: Acer Aspire M3-581TG 15.6-inch Ultrabook - Aluminium (Intel Core i5 3317U 1.7GHz, 4GB RAM, 500GB HDD, DVDSM DL, LAN, WLAN, BT, Webcam, Nvidia Graphics, Windows 8 64-bit) (Personal Computers)
I ordered this laptop on the 21st December knowing that it wouldn't arrive until the 28th December. It was actually delivered on the 23rd just in time for Christmas! Great fast delivery.

The laptop is well made, super fast, and windows 8 takes minutes to get used to. The laptop has played every game, modern and old, that I have thrown at it so far which is great!

The only negatives are that the speakers are facing down so the sound gets muffled when lying in bed watching Tv, and the position of the power button is questionable...I have accidentally pressed it more than once already!

I would rate the laptop at 4/5.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Edit: Buy a Laptop Cooling pad if using for gaming!!!, 29 July 2013
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Acer Aspire M3-581TG 15.6-inch Ultrabook - Aluminium (Intel Core i5 3317U 1.7GHz, 4GB RAM, 500GB HDD, DVDSM DL, LAN, WLAN, BT, Webcam, Nvidia Graphics, Windows 8 64-bit) (Personal Computers)
EDIT: After investing in the cooling pad, I found that everything runs smoother. I would definitely recommend this product to anyone who wants a (somewhat) portable gaming laptop.

Frankly, I bought this laptop as a cheap(-ish) alternative to getting a decent gaming desktop. As I am going to university in September I hadn't wanted to get anything too big and clunky to take there with me as I was considering moving there at the time.

However, from day one, I've had a few faults. In the first few months that I had the laptop, it would randomly freeze and make a strange noise through the speakers.

In the past few months though, this has not happened. Instead I've been hit with another problem!

Games that should be playing easily(according to reviews on the internet) are playing with a ridiculous amount of lag. I've updated the graphics card drivers and the games have been automatically optimised for the drivers. I thought that optimising the game would make it play better but instead, it's exactly the same. So I decided to put the options down to the lowest settings possible and yet I still don't see any improvement at all.

After some research, I believe that this problem is down to overheating. Whether this is a fault with my own machine, I am unsure, but I don't really want to send my laptop back to get looked at because it is my sole machine and I'm not really a casual gamer. Therefore, I am looking in to buying an external laptop cooling pad but if this fails to work I can't see me wanting to keep this laptop.

I have also encountered another minor problem. When I am typing, quite often I will press a key down but the latter will not appear on the screen. I have tested this often and I have ended up with many spelling mistakes throughout my assignments that are due to this problem. Again, maybe this a fault with my machine?

The screen, the placement of USB ports and the build quality of the machine are not fantastic, however, it's definitely not bad enough to give the laptop a review lower than 3 stars.

All I read are good reviews about this laptop, however, so maybe I was just unlucky!
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