Acer announces Timeline ultrabooks with Ivy Bridge, Nvidia GPU

By on June 20, 2012, 7:00 AM

Acer has announced the availability of its latest ultrabook series, the Timeline Ultra M5, which comes in three configurations including two with discrete Nvidia graphics. The most affordable option (M5-481T-6770) is set at $680 with a 14-inch 1366x768 LED-backlit display, a Sandy Bridge Core i3-2377M processor, Intel HD Graphics 3000, 6GB of DDR3 RAM, as well as a 500GB HDD, 20GB SSD and DVD drive.

Stepping up a notch, the M5-481TG-6814 is set at $780 and packs an Ivy Bridge Core i5-3317U, an Nvidia GeForce GT 640M LE 1GB, 4GB of RAM, as well as the same display and storage configuration as the lower-cost unit. At the priciest end, Acer offers the $830 M5-581TG-6666 with a 15.6-inch 1366x768 screen and 6GB of RAM, while the remaining components appear to be the same as the $780 machine.

The Timeline Ultra M5 systems are a bit bulkier than most ultrabooks, but that's to be expected with the hard drive, DVD drive and discrete GPU. Both 14-inchers weigh 4.3lbs while the 15-inch system is even heavier at 5.07lbs. All three measure 0.81 inches thin. By comparison, the Folio 13 we reviewed earlier this year is also toward the larger end of ultrabooks, yet it weighs 3.3lbs and measures 0.7 inches thick.

The Timeline Ultra M5 press release also mentions features include a backlit keyboard, two USB 3.0 ports, Dolby-branded audio as well as an eight-hour battery life. We don't meant to detract from what seems like a decent lineup, but it (re)raises the question: at what point is an ultrabook not an ultrabook anymore? At this rate, you'll probably be able to buy a desktop replacement "ultrabook" by Christmas.




User Comments: 4

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Guest said:

More Acer products hobbled by cheap 1366x768 panels, to ignore.

Arris Arris said:

More Acer products hobbled by cheap 1366x768 panels, to ignore.

I actually have a 1366x768 Acer laptop that I won. Many will snub such a low resolution screen, but for those who aren't doing productivity work with images or videos its not all that bad. And considering that mobile graphics solutions aren't providing blistering FPS in modern games a lower than top end resolution isn't a bad option to get a better gaming experience. If I'd been buying a laptop myself I would probably have looked for something higher resolution but I don't find 1366x768 all that bad to work on.

Arris Arris said:

Even more so when you look at Macbook pro non retina offerings - 1280 x 800.

Guest said:

As far as I read into it an 'UltraBook' is a class of high quality, solid computers with good components. As opposed to some specific format type.

That said I think we're ready to lose the dvd drive now.

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