This 15.4in full-size Acer Aspire 5720 laptop, which falls easily into the budget desktop-replacement category, is packed with features.

From the outside you're presented with a shiny black top. Open the Acer Acer Aspire 5720's heavy lid and it has a sober light-grey 'CeramiFinish' top deck and screen surround, with plenty of additional buttons and flashing lights to keep you entertained.

At the heart of the Acer Aspire 5720 is an Intel Core 2 Duo processor – the slowest of the group at 1.5GHz. Its 80GB hard drive is tiny by today's standards, but at least the 2GB of RAM should keep the Vista Home Premium operating system running smoothly.

The Acer Aspire 5720's keyboard feels a little 'spongy' and the trackpad buttons aren't ideally placed for clicking, but the pad itself was reasonably sensitive. Overall build quality was mediocre – the laptop felt somewhat plasticky.

It's not unusual to find various free software trial offers and proprietary software pre-installed on new systems, but the Acer Aspire 5720 comes with way too much of this nonsense.

In our speed tests the Acer Aspire 5720 managed 64 points, a very good WorldBench 6 score for a Vista-based machine that costs less then £400. Graphics performance was poor – the Acer Aspire scored only 15fps (frames per second) even at Fear's minimum quality settings.


Acer's Aspire 5720 turned in an impressive score in WorldBench 6, despite housing the slowest processor in the group. It's not for gamers, but it's an otherwise well-specified Vista Home Premium machine.