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Acer Swift Edge 16 (2024) review: Extremely portable

Acer Swift Edge 16 (2024) review: Extremely portable

Acer Swift Edge 16 (2024)

The Acer Swift Edge 16 (2024) is as slim and as lightweight as previous iterations. The latest version tweaks some features, and refreshes the hardware. The price (from S$1,799) — for a premium Acer notebook — is also reasonable for what you get. Battery life, though, is middling at around five hours. But it's still one of the most portable 16-inch laptops you can buy now.

Quick specs

  • 16-inch 3,200 x 2,000-pixel OLED screen, 120Hz
  • AMD Ryzen 7 8840U processor with Radeon Graphics, 16GB RAM and 1TB SSD
  • 2x USB-C, 2x USB-A, HDMI 2.1, microSD card slot, headphone jack
  • 1.23kg

There have been some changes in the Acer Swift Edge 16 since I tested the original version. These tweaks were first introduced last year, but as far as I could tell, Acer didn't launch this 2023 version (with an AMD Ryzen 7 7840U processor) in Singapore. Instead, the latest 2024 edition comes with an even newer Ryzen 7 8840U chip that offers similar AI capabilities as Intel's AI PCs. For example, Windows Studio Effects like automatic subject framing and background blur are available for the webcam in the Acer Swift Edge 16. And the keyboard has a dedicated Microsoft Copilot key.

This 1,440p webcam is not your average laptop webcam. It's excellent, producing crisp images that are less noisy than most of the competition. Add in the AI enhancements, and you have a webcam that's perfect for video calls and meetings. But there's still room for improvement: The webcam does not have a privacy shutter of any kind (physical or electronic). There's also no facial recognition, though a fingerprint sensor is embedded in the power button.

Acer Swift Edge 16 (2024)
Credit: Vincent Chang/Can Buy or Not

In my 2022 review of the original Acer Swift Edge, I noted that there was plenty of empty unused space at the sides of the keyboard. Acer responded by adding a numeric keypad. These number keys are slimmer than usual, but they will do in a pinch. The Function keys, too, are very small, while the keyboard still feels shallow. This isn't too surprising since the laptop is just under 13mm thick, and clocks in at around 1.2kg. But despite the slim profile, Acer managed to fit a comprehensive selection of ports. Not only do you get USB-C and USB-A ports (two of each), there's also HDMI, and even a microSD card slot.

Unlike the 2022 version that had a 4K OLED screen, the OLED screen on the latest Acer Swift Edge 16 has a slightly lower 3,200 x 2,000-pixel resolution. But the refresh rate is now a smooth 120Hz. Colours look vibrant, and the screen is bright, too. I'm fine with the lower resolution — running at 4K resolution can reduce the battery life. But the glossy display is rather reflective, and can be distracting in a well-lit environment.

Acer Swift Edge 16 (2024)
Credit: Vincent Chang/Can Buy or Not

As mentioned earlier, the Acer Swift Edge 16 uses AMD's latest Ryzen 7 8840U processor. Performance is good — its PCMark 10 score of 6,872 is a decent improvement over the 6,157 score by the original Swift Edge. However, the latest Intel-powered Acer Swift Go 14 (2024) seems to have a slight edge here with a score of 7,050. While the Acer Swift Edge 16 isn't intended to be a gaming PC, you can run casual, less graphically-intensive games on it. However, in 3DMark's Time Spy Extreme benchmark, its AMD Radeon graphics fell behind the Intel Arc graphics found in the latest Intel processors. The Swift Edge scored 812 compared with 1,634 for the Acer Swift Go 14.

See Also
Apple MacBook Pro 14 (2023)

In addition, the Acer Swift Go notebooks supports the latest Wi-Fi 7 standard, while the Acer Swift Edge models available in Singapore only have Wi-Fi 6E. The Acer Swift Edge 16 lasted around five hours in our battery test, which is about two hours fewer than the 2022 model. This middling battery stamina does put a dent in this laptop's overall portability. You might be scrambling to charge it before the end of the day. Nevertheless, the Acer Swift Edge 16 is a big-screen ultra-portable that's worth checking out. My review set (with 16GB memory) costs S$1,799 — Acer also sells a 32GB model at S$1,999. Get it now from Acer, Shopee, and Lazada.

Note: Review unit provided by Acer.

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Upgraded, but still as lightweight as before

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