The Acer Predator Triton 500 SE, a contender for the top place on lists of the best gaming laptops on the internet, has cutting-edge hardware despite its compact size. It features one of the most powerful graphics cards available for laptops of this type. On paper, it certainly positions itself as a top portable powerhouse in terms of pure technical prowess, particularly considering its unique aspect ratio and emphasis on on-screen quality.
Does the Predator Triton 500 SE, the top dog in the company’s portable PC gaming portfolio, live up to the lofty expectations set by its asking price of $2,699 / £1,999.99?
Acer Predator Triton 500 SE design and features
The Acer Predator Triton 500 SE immediately impresses its all-metal construction and excellent 16:10 screen. The screen has a WQXGA 2560 x 1600p resolution, which aligns with the latest 16-inch Macbook rather than more typical gaming laptop resolutions. With a refresh rate of 165 hertz and a reaction time of 3 milliseconds, as well as built-in support for Nvidia G-sync and Optimus, this monitor is hardly a slouch.
The real talking point, of course, is the hardware inside, which will turn many heads in the gaming laptop space. It has an Intel i9-11900H processor running at 2.5GHz, an RTX 3080 mobile GPU with 8GB GDDR6 VRAM, and 32GB DDR4 RAM running at 3200MHz. When I say this machine is a behemoth of a battle station packed into a 20mm chassis, I’m not exaggerating. Still, it does have some serious gaming chops.
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Speaking of the deck, the chiclet design on this machine is adequate but not among the best gaming keyboards I’ve used on a gaming laptop. The keys themselves are well-spaced and responsive, but they are a little on the small side, giving the impression of being cramped. The onboard Corning Gorilla Glass trackpad, which is as smooth as silk, is a joy to use. While the vast majority of PC gamers will most likely be using the best gaming mouse or a wireless option, the surface is pleasant to use for general navigation.
Acer Predator Triton 500 SE performance
The WQXGA 2560 x 1600p display does an outstanding job of making both new and classic games look genuinely exceptional. The Acer 500 SE was nothing for its processing and graphics performance power in the games I tested and in everything I threw. Red Dead Redemption 2, still one of the most visually demanding games, performed exceptionally well in both Full HD and 1440p, with average frame rates of 99.6 FPS and 82 FPS, respectively.
This handled Metro Exodus PC Enhanced Edition flawlessly with RTX capabilities fully enabled. The rig was averaging 90 FPS at 1080p and 67 FPS at 1440p, which is no small feat for a game that looks this good.
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As you might expect, incredible performance like this will strain the hardware inside. This is where my one nagging complaint about the Acer Predator Triton 500 SE comes into play. During my benchmarking and testing, this gaming laptop frequently reached temperatures of 97 degrees or higher under moderate stress. For accurate readings, I actively monitored the heat using the included PredatorSense software and CAM.
I should emphasize that excessive heat in a short period is generally nothing to be concerned about. However, when the laptop fans are on full blast, making a lot of noise, and the temperature regularly rises into the high 90s, it is cause for concern. Worse, given the specifications, the Laptope is every bit as loud and hot as you might have expected.
Should you buy the Acer Predator Triton 500 SE?
I strongly recommend the Triton 500 SE with a proper heat management solution to anyone who wants to experience the latest PC games in 1440p with few compromises or steamroll in 1080p. The screen is excellent, and the hardware inside speaks for itself. Because of its lightning-fast acceleration, it’s a rig that will last for at least the next few years.
The Triton 500 SE is one of the more pricey alternatives in terms of value for money when comparing RTX 3080 laptops. Still, the extra cost is justified by the 1440p display. The Razer Blade 14 and Asus ROG Strix SCAR 15 G533 are the closest alternatives at the current price point (both of which feature RTX 3080 configurations in QHD at 165Hz for similar rates). Regardless, the Acer Predator Triton 500 SE is a great gaming laptop that justifies its asking price thanks to its impressive feature set and overall performance.
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The Acer Predator Triton 500 SE fits all the promised performance power into its elegant all-metal body yet is every bit as hot as you may worry, all things considered.