On­wards and up­wards

Acer As­pire GX281

HWM (Malaysia) - - TEST - By Peter Chu

Acer is strik­ing the iron while it's still red-hot with the As­pire GX281 – one of the first pre-as­sem­bled desk­tops in the coun­try to be fit­ted with one of AMD’s new Ryzen pro­ces­sors, specif­i­cally the Ryzen 7 1700X. It comes ac­com­pa­nied by an AMD Radeon RX 480 graph­ics card, 8GB of DDR4 RAM, and a stor­age combo that com­prises a 256GB solid-state drive and a 1TB hard drive.

The As­pire GX281 has a de­cent amount of con­nec­tiv­ity ports as you would ex­pect, but it’s not the most we’ve seen on a pre-as­sem­bled desk­top. On its front, you’ll find es­sen­tials such as a USB 3.1 Type-C port, a USB 3.1 Type-A port, a head­phone jack, a mi­cro­phone jack, a SD card reader, and a good ol’ DVD-RW drive. Re­sid­ing on the back of the As­pire GX281, mean­while, are two ad­di­tional USB 3.1 Type-A ports, four USB 2.0 ports, three Dis­playPorts, and a HDMI port be­long­ing to the Radeon RX 480, and the usual au­dio jacks.

Bun­dled to­gether with the As­pire GX281 is a wire­less key­board and mouse. They serve their pur­pose well, but don’t ex­pect them to re­place any of your ex­ist­ing gam­ing pe­riph­er­als (wired or oth­er­wise) any­time soon.

We’re happy to re­port that the As­pire GX281 had ab­so­lutely no trou­ble han­dling every­day work­loads like web brows­ing and word pro­cess­ing. In fact, we could type out this re­view on Google Docs while switch­ing back and forth be­tween the dozen other tabs that were opened in Google Chrome with­out the slight­est bit of hes­i­tance from the ma­chine. It didn’t mat­ter if a cou­ple of them were stream­ing 4K videos on YouTube ei­ther.

You're bound to be pleased with the gam­ing ca­pa­bil­i­ties of the As­pire GX281. It’s no hot­blooded 4K gam­ing ma­chine by any stretch of the imag­i­na­tion, but you can rest easy know­ing that it can run most games in Full HD (1,920 x 1080) with their graph­ics set­tings cranked to the max. And we say most games, be­cause the Radeon RX 480 of the As­pire GX281 doesn’t have enough video RAM to com­fort­ably run Tom Clancy's Ghost Re­con Wild­lands with the graph­ics pre­set set to Ul­tra. Lower the graph­ics pre­set down a notch to Very High, how­ever, and you can safely ex­pect the game to run with a re­spectable av­er­age 53 fps.

But the fact that the As­pire GX281 could run Deus Ex: Mankind Di­vided at its high­est pos­si­ble graph­ics set­tings with an av­er­age 43.5 fps should be suf­fi­cient enough to es­tab­lish its gam­ing cred­i­bil­ity, con­sid­er­ing how no­to­ri­ously de­mand­ing the game can be. Just to drive the point home, we’ll also have you know that the As­pire GX281 man­aged to run Over­watch on Epic graph­ics set­tings with a silkys­mooth av­er­age of 104 fps.

The As­pire GX281 ob­tained a pCMark 8 Cre­ative bench­mark score of 5,806, which goes to show just how ca­pa­ble a mul­ti­me­dia work­horse it re­ally is.

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