Hands-On, Laptop

Acer Predator Triton 500 (2020) Hands-On: Blazing Fast 300Hz Screen & RTX 2070 Super

The new Acer Predator Triton 500 is now available for pre-order in Malaysia, and it is better than ever. Not only does it come with a fast 300Hz screen now, the range-topping model features an equally fast Nvidia GeForce RTX 2070 Super Max-Q as well. These two hardware alone make it a powerful, high-end gaming laptop.

Of course, that also means the Triton 500 sits at an even higher price point now, though it does bring a number of other notable improvements. Plus, it’s a thin, lightweight, premium gaming machine: these qualities don’t come cheap. We’ve got the range-topping RM8,999 configuration of the laptop for review, so here’s our hands-on of the refreshed Triton 500.

On the surface, the updated Triton 500 isn’t all that different from its predecessor. It’s still using the same chassis, but there are a couple of aesthetic changes. The top lid, for one, no longer sports the “Predator” branding below the logo. The RGB keyboard now supports per-key lighting customisation as well, which is a nice addition.

But one of the most notable changes with the new Triton 500 is the display. As mentioned, this top-of-the-line model features a 15.6-inch 1920 x 1080 IPS display with a blazing fast 300Hz refresh rate and G-Sync support. Previously, the Triton 500 was only available with a 144Hz panel, so you’re effectively getting twice as many frames per second now.

Of course, the difference between 300Hz and 144Hz is not immediately noticeable: I personally can’t tell the difference. But if you’re a competitive gamer that want every single advantage you can get, the Triton 500’s 300Hz panel certainly offers that. Fast-paced games like Call of Duty: Warzone and Apex Legends will benefit the most from the high refresh rate.

But can the RTX 2070 Super Max-Q of the Triton 500 make full use of the screen’s 300Hz refresh rate? Well, not in demanding AAA games, but it’s definitely a beefy GPU. I haven’t had the chance to extensively test out the GPU yet, but rest assured, I’ll do just that in the full review of this gaming laptop.

As for the quality of the display itself, it looks great. Colours are vibrant, viewing angles are good, and it’s a pretty darn bright panel as well. It’s certainly a display befitting of a premium laptop.

Another big update the Triton 500 received is a 10th generation Intel Core i7-10875H processor. Not only does it have eight cores and 16 threads, its peak clock speed is a whopping 5.1GHz. The previous model only had a Core i7-9750H chip that offered six cores, 12 threads, and a 4.5GHz peak clock speed. Needless to say, the new processor of the updated Triton 500 will bring some notable gains.

Of course, qualities we loved from the original Triton 500 are all here in the updated model. It still measures only 17.9mm thin, making it one of the slimmest gaming laptops in the market now. On top of that, it tips the scales at 2.1kg too. Not the lightest machine I’ve seen, but it’s light enough to be carried around in a backpack without much trouble.

Port selection of the Triton 500 remains the same as its predecessor. These include a USB-C connection with Thunderbolt 3 and DisplayPort support, three USB-A ports, an HDMI 2.0 output, as well as a mini DisplayPort.

The same remains true for the keyboard of the Triton 500: it’s still just as good to type on. It has enough key travel to not feel shallow, the tactile feedback is great, and the standard layout takes little to no time to get familiar with. I can type as quickly as I do on a full-size keyboard the moment I start using the laptop.

That being said, my one qualm with the Triton 500’s keyboard layout has not been addressed: the key to launch the PredatorSense software is still placed right beside the backspace key. It’s very easy to launch the software by accident whenever I reach for the backspace key, which can get quite annoying.

But let’s move on to something more positive, the trackpad. It uses Windows Precision drivers, and it is easily one of the most accurate trackpads I’ve used. It can track my fingers extremely well, gestures work seamlessly, and the smooth surface of the trackpad makes it effortless to use.

There’s no denying the premium appeal of the Acer Predator Triton 500. It has a fast 300Hz screen, a powerful processor, a beefy GPU, and a slim, lightweight design. The only downside? It’s an expensive gaming laptop. This particular variant of the Triton 500 costs RM8,999, which offers 16GB of RAM and 512GB of SSD storage.

It’s a steep asking price, but that’s how much you have to pay for a high-end, premium gaming laptop like the Triton 500. I’m really looking forward to putting this laptop through its paces in a full review, and whether or not it can really justify the RM8,999 price tag.