Acer Predator Triton 17X review

Acer Predator Triton 17X review

We liked the first Acer Triton we saw as it was a perfect sleeper laptop that was good at gaming but could also hide in an office. However, the Acer Predator Triton 17X ups the ante by being the highest spec gaming laptop we’ve ever seen from Acer… while still being able to hide in an office. We had very high hopes. Just how good is it?

Specs

Screen17-inch, matte, 250Hz, 2,560 x 1,600, IPS, HDR display
Processor3.9-5.4GHz Intel Core i9-13900HX CPU
Memory32GB LPDDR5-5600 RAM
Graphics16GB Nvidia GeForce RTX 4090 GPU
Hard drive1TB
ConnectivityWi-Fi 6E
Bluetooth 5.1
2 x USB-C 3.2 Gen 2
2 x USB-A 3.2 Gen 2
3.5mm audio jack
HDMI 2.1
2.5Gbps Ethernet
SDcard spot
SpeakersSix
MicrophonesDual array
Extra SecurityFingerprint reader
Windows Hello (fingerprint)
TPM 2.0
WebcamFull HD
Battery99.9Wh
Dimensions380 x 280 x 22mm
Weight3.05KG (1.23KG)
SKUPTX17-71
Full specs here.

Features, Ergonomics and Design

Whatever we were expecting from the Acer Predator Triton 17X, it wasn’t this. Both the lid and chassis are solid, CNC-milled blocks of aluminium that both look and feel very high quality while simultaneously providing solid protection to the whole. As with the previous Triton we reviewed, there’s only a small, very discreet Predator logo on the lid, so it should fit into most offices too.

The Acer Predator Triton 17X's lid.
The Acer Predator Triton 17X’s, black, aluminium lid and discreet logo are cool, discreet and understated in any setting.

Opening it up reveals the bright 17-inch display and the per-key-lit RGB keyboard. What looks like a second power key is actually a programmable smart key for a customisable shortcut. However, what really stands out is the “RGB Micro-Etched Logo” in the bottom right which (somehow) shines through the aluminium chassis in some kind of super-fine matrix. It’s seriously cool, yet reserved.

Acer Predator Triton 17X review predator logo
The 17X’s glowing ‘Micro-Etched’ Predator logo is a discreet, very nice detail. It can also be turned off as required.

The screen itself is very impressive. Like the HP Omen Transcend 16 we saw recently, it uses mini-LED backlights which are arranged into 1,000 dimmable zones. We expected great things in terms of contrast.

The display has a UHD, 2,560 x 1,600 resolution which renders the Desktop immaculately. It’s also Windows HDR compatible meaning that HDR video (and gaming) content looks amazing. Colours are very bright and vibrant while contrast is phenomenal. It approaches OLED-levels of true black but without having the (potentially) distracting reflections that are inherent with the technology’s glossy coating, The 17X’s display has a matte finish.

The Acer Predator Triton 17X's screen.
The Predator Triton 17X has one of the very best screens we’ve ever tested. It also supports Windows’ HDR, Nvidia G-Sync and 100 per cent of the difficult DCI-P3 colour gamut (which creators will like). Meanwhile, the Predator Sense app provides easy access to all the power, fan and ‘Pulsar’ lighting settings.

The enhanced contrast afforded by the HDR reveals a new world of detail in both bright and dark areas, simultaneously. Lighting effects (like bright, glowing objects in dark scenes of videos and games) can make you go, ‘Wow!’ Both colour gradients and monochromatic gradients are very smooth and it even displays 100 per cent of the difficult DCI-P3 colour gamut which Creators will like.

Acer Predator Triton 17X review - backlight bleed.
For those who care about such things, the Predator Triton 17X’s mini-LED backlighting completely prevents backlight bleed – as you can see in this highly detailed photo.

On top of all that, it has a very-fast, 250Hz refresh rate and this, married with a fast pixel response time, ensures fast-moving objects are rendered very smoothly indeed. Ultimately, there’s no better laptop display than this.

Acer Predator Triton 17X review - keyboard view.
Some types of gamer may lament the lack of a number pad, but otherwise, the Triton 17X’s keyboard is one of the best.

The keyboard, is a very high quality Scrabble-tile touch-type unit that’s very comfortable and accurate to type and game upon for extended periods. There are some useful media keys and the up-and-down arrow keys are full-sized. However, there’s no number pad which will be an issue for RTS and MOBA gamers. The button in the top left is the programmable hotkey.

Acer Predator Triton 17X review RGB keyboard
The keyboard’s per-key, programmable, ‘Pulsar’ RGB lighting and pre-set effects can make it look particularly awesome. It can also be set to a sober, office-friendly, discreet hue in order to fit into a stuffy office.

The trackpad is smooth and accurate and the buttons are well-weighted. It also has a Windows Hello-compatible fingerprint reader embedded into the top left.

The Full HD webcam captures a clear image and does well at fending-off grain in low light. The dual-microphone array does a good job of capturing clear audio in a noisy background.

The six (count’em) speakers are fantastic. They get very loud, have great fidelity and deliver some seriously punchy bass. They’re also aided by some cool-looking, stainless steel, mesh speaker grilles at the front and sides which are high quality and add another cool design element to the mix.

All told, the Acer Predator Triton 17X is one of the very best laptops we’ve ever interacted with.

Acer Predator Triton 17X Review: Photo Flourish

Our Acer Predator Triton 17X review’s photos feature the badge from Girl Guides Australia.

Performance

The Acer Predator Triton 17X wields a top-tier, 3.9 – 5.4GHz Intel Core i9-13900HX processor which has eight Performance cores and 16 Efficiency cores that run across 32 threads. It’s flanked by 32GB of fast, low-power LPDDR5-5600 memory and a speedy, 1TB NVMe hard drive.

In the general-computing, PCMark 10 benchmark it scored an impressive 8,552 which is one of the highest scores we’ve seen. In the Cinebench processor rendering tests the Acer Predator Triton 17X scored 4,815 in the quick R15 test and a massive 30,795 in the longer R23 test. These are top-end scores.

Acer Predator Triton 17X review - detail shot on the lid.
The Acer Predator Triton 17X achieved the fastest overall 3D performance we’ve yet seen.

3D Performance comes via the industry-best, Nvidia GeForce RTX 4090 GPU which has 16GB of GDDR6 RAM. In the difficult 3DMark ray-tracing tests, Speed Way and Port Royal, the Acer Predator Triton 17X scored a very impressive 5,845 (average 58.5fps) and 14,272 (average 66.1fps) respectively. These are the best scores we’ve ever seen!

In the AAA-gaming-title-a-like game tests, Time Spy and Fire Strike Extreme, the Acer Predator Triton 17X scored 20,390 (average 135.3fps) and 24,179 (average 116.6fps) respectively. These are a whisker away from the being best scores we’ve seen.

Finally, in the easier, 3DMark Night Raid benchmark, which apes casual and competitive games, the Triton 17X scored 83,254 (average 927fps). This, again, is a smidge off first place.

Ultimately, the Acer Predator Triton 17X sports the best 3D Performance that we’ve ever seen on a laptop.

The cooling system is impressive but has issues. The official blurb sounds impressive, “The Triton 17X includes only the best state-of-the-art cooling, such as a three-fan approach with two, all-metal fans to push performance to its maximum potential.” It continues, describing a vapour chamber, liquid metal thermal grease, a ‘5th Gen Aeroblade 3D fan’ with ‘Vortex flow’ and something called ‘Thermal Foam.’

Under general use, the fans operate quietly in the background but when maxxed-out using the Predator Sense app, they produce a very robust, loud whoosh. Most of the time it’s unobtrusive though.

Connectvity

Acer Predator Triton 17X left view
On the left of the Acer Predator Triton 17X is a 2.5Gbps LAN port, a USB-A 3.2 Gen 2 port, USB-C 3.2 Gen 2 port and a 3.5mm audio jack.
Acer Predator Triton 17X review right view
On the right is a USB-C 3.2 Gen 2 port, a USB-A 3.2 Gen 2 port, an SD card slot and an HDMI 2.1 port.

Inside there’s Wi-Fi 6E and Bluetooth 5.1. While it’s odd that there are no Thunderbolt 4 ports, few will complain about this complement.

Portability and Battery Life

The Acer Predator Triton 17X’s aluminium chassis feels bomb proof and we feel it will easily survive life on the road. However, at 3.05KG and with the power supply adding an additional 1.23KG, it ain’t light.

Acer Predator Triton 17X review underside
Just note that the Acer Predator Triton 17X can be a bit of a fingerprint magnet. They wipe away easily, though.

The first time we tested the battery life, the max-size 99.9Wh battery only lasted three hours. A bit of detective work found that the Nvidia GPU had been forced ‘on’ in the BIOS. We re-ran the test (PCMark 10 Modern Office) with Nvidia Optimus technology engaging the integrated Intel GPU instead, and it lasted for 5 hours and 1 minute. While this pushes it away from our worst Portability score, it’s not by much. We suspect that the main culprit is the mini-LED screen which, at its lowest setting, remains rather bright.

Acer Predator Triton 17X review - lying down flat when opened.
The Triton 17X has a strong hinge that can even lie-down flat.

Price and availability

The Acer Predator Triton 17X has a hefty RRP of $7,999! However, it’s currently on sale for $5,488 which significantly bolsters the value proposition. That said, availability is a bit hit and miss at the moment. We found a more-expensive variant with 4TB hard drive for $8,999 on Acer’s own store. So, shop around. Update: It’s on sale for $5,997!

Alternatives to the Acer Predator Triton 17X

As a premium gaming laptop, the Acer Predator Triton 17X finds itself in a desirable space, but it’s not alone.

Lenovo Legion Pro 7i One-inch smaller, not as powerful or as well-built, but it represents amazing value. It’s still our Number 1 overall laptop and is particularly attractive when on sale.

Asus ROG Strix SCAR 18 It’s one-inch wider, rivals the Triton’s power and even has decent battery life. However, its ostentatious looks won’t appeal to everyone. It is on sale now, though.

Asus ROG Strix SCAR 17 Asus’ 17-inch behemoth keeps getting updated internally so, while it’s getting a bit long in the tooth, it’s still exceptionally powerful. That’s largely due to the AMD processor and Nvidia 4090 RTX GPU. A version with AMD’s 3D V-Cache technology is even more powerful.

Pioneer DreamBook Power X370 RTX 4090 Pioneer’s 17-inch rival can be highly tailored with its online configurator which means you can save a great deal of money. For a long time it had the fastest 3D performance… before Asus, and now Acer, took the crown.

MSI Raider GE68HX 13V MSI’s Raider is slightly smaller and less powerful. But, it’s currently on sale for a huge discount.

Conclusion: Should you buy the Acer Predator Triton 17X?

When a gaming laptop comes along and delivers the best, overall 3D gaming performance we’ve yet seen, the answer is going to be, yes. It’s expensive and new and availability is a bit of an issue right now, but the Acer Predator Triton 17X is also one of the very best laptops on the market in terms of Features, Ergonomics and Design and so is worth hunting around for.

Acer Predator Triton 17X review: speaker grilles
The Acer Predator Triton 17X is so well put together that even the solid, stainless-steel speaker grilles feel classy and look great.

A price drop could easily see it rise to Number 1 in our ranks as our resident Lenovo Legion can only fight-off challengers with its huge discounts for so long. Neither the Legion nor the Triton have great battery life, but few premium gaming laptops do.

If price and portability aren’t an issue, this is the gaming laptop to buy. Everyone else should see iof they can find it in a sale.

Awards

Highly Recommended Gaming Laptop Award

Pros

Best gaming performance
Excellent HDR screen
Brilliant ergonomics

Cons

Very expensive
Very heavy
Poor battery life

Results

Acer Predator Triton 17X Scores
  • 2D Performance
  • 3D Performance
  • Features, Ergonomics & Design
  • Stability
  • Portability
  • Value
4.7

Summary

The Acer Predator Triton 17X has the best 3D performance of any gaming laptop we’ve ever tested. It also has some of the best ergonomics. It’s big and expensive, though.

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