First of all, Acer Aspire 7738G is one pretty solidly built laptop since all parts are nicely fitted and there are no squeaky noises, even when we tried to produce some. Potential problem can be small cover opening angle if you are used to hold notebook in your lap but, since this is 17-inch model that would be uncomfortable position anyway (that much opened cover would make notebook unstable on anybody’s lap). Despite its size, this notebook is not heavy and for this diagonal and 3.5kg is very acceptable weight.
Exterior of this model is dominated by dark blue piano finish plastic cover that is home to Acer logo and SignalUp mark. Interior of notebook is attractively designed with few very interesting, but not so functional details. Palm rest and touch pad are made out of matte plastic with small line indentations and look as one continuous surface. Besides its nice looks, this surface is also very easy to maintain. Additional sets of buttons are located on both sides of keyboard. Left set is dedicated to communication controls (wireless, Bluetooth and backup) while right one is dedicated to multimedia. Multimedia touch panel has average precision and sensitivity so some adjustment time is needed. Acer Power Smart button is located at upper right corner, and it allows easy and fast power profile change. Power button with blue LED border is located in upper left corner.
Acer Aspire 7738 has a keyboard because of which some much more expensive notebooks will be ashamed. It belongs to new style of notebook keyboard where keys are separated by a small gap. Bending is unnoticeable so even prolong typing won’t be such a problem. Touch pad is precise and rather large which will get handy in combination with multi gesture features. Button for disabling touch pad during typing is right next to touchpad. Finger print reader is odd detail on a notebook of this class, but we find its location also to be even odder. It is located in a “dead zone” between touchpad buttons, so accidental activation of finger print authentication will be common problem.
Since Acer Aspire 7738 is multimedia notebook that is optimized for watching movies, very good display is necessary. Colors are nicely saturated and defined while vertical viewing angle is also very good. Diagonal of 17.3-inches and 1600x900 pixels resolution resulted in small pixel pitch. Thanks to 16:9 display ratio, movie lovers will enjoy watching movies on this notebook. Brightness is also very good, because even when set at minimum level, it is enough for everyday activities.
Basic components are rock solid. Core 2 Duo T6400 at 2GHz is more than enough for most of the activities on a notebook. NVIDIA GeForce GT130M sounds as something new, but actually, this is optimized 9650M GT model that operates at slightly higher frequencies. Of course, performances are elevated with lower power consumption.
Storage system is also “special”. It consists of two hard drives: one bigger and faster and one smaller and slower. Our suggestion is to install operating system on larger hard drive, while smaller HDD can be used as backup storage. Acer was also generous when it comes to memory, which is present in form of 4GB DDR3 memory that has lower power consumption compared to DDR2.
Cooling solution is great, which resulted in a very cool and quiet notebook. Noise generated by cooling system remains at acceptable levels, even when notebook is under full load for a long time.
Speakers do have power but, at maximum volume, distortion of sound can be noticed. This notebook can be even used to watch movies with your friends, and thanks to implemented Tuba CineBass subwoofer even low frequency sounds are noticeable.
Unfortunately, Express card slot is not included despite the fact that there should have been enough room for it. On smaller models, this can be a problem but on a 17-inch notebook, there should be Express slot. If you wonder why, here are few examples: SSD, 3G modem, TV tuner … Maybe you will never use it, but it would be nice to have these options.
Webcam is, as expected from an Acer notebook, excellent. It can record video in resolutions up to 1280x800. Interesting fact is that in preview mode, video can drop few frames from time to time, since this process uses only one core, but during recording, both cores are used and no problems with recorded videos were noticed.
Model that we got comes with no preinstalled OS but on CD were present drives for XP and Vista.
Acer Aspire 7738G is, basically, smaller version of Aspire 8730G model with few small, but very useful hardware upgrades and just few minor problems. Fortunately price tag for 7738G (around 720€) is lower than 8730G model, so we can recommend this model, especially since target user group is clearly defined. Our final impression is that Acer Aspire 7738G, with its quality build and performances, easily justifies price that you will have to pay for it.
|Acer Aspire 7738G - Results|
|PC Mark 05||4535|
|3D Mark 03||15253|
|3D Mark 06||5322|
|HD Tach Larger HDD [average]||60MB/s|
|HD Tach Smaller HDD [average]||52MB/s|
|1h 11min / 3h 18min|
|Acer Aspire 7738G|
|CPU||Intel Core 2 Duo T6400 at 2GHz|
|HDD||320GB + 160GB|
|Graphics card||NVIDIA GeForce GT130M 1GB DDR2|
|Connectors||4 x USB, D-Sub, HDMI, S/PDIF, Bluetooth, Wireless 802.11b/g/N, card reader|