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Acer’s First Porsche Design Laptop is a Thing of Beauty

Special editions of tech products are nothing new. OnePlus has had a McLaren version of its phones for a few years, while the top-spec Samsung Galaxy Z Flip can be bought in a Thom Browne edition.

This isn’t something that Acer has dabbled in though, until now. The Book RS is the company’s first laptop to be produced in collaboration with Porsche Design, the accessories-focused subsidiary of the luxury car manufacturer.

From my hands-on time with the device, I can assure you it’s every bit as premium as it sounds. The most notable design feature is undoubtedly the carbon fibre cover, a nod to Porsche’s illustrious history in the world of motorsport. It’s far from the most cost-effective choice of material, but succeeds in ensuring the Book RS remains relatively light, at 1.26kg.

Ultimately, though, it’s not how it looks but how it performs. The device is powered by Intel’s new 11th gen Tiger Lake processors (up to i7), which combines with built-in Xe graphics on most models. High-end configurations also come with the option discrete Nvidia GeForce MX350 GPU.

While it was impossible for me to rigorously test performance from my short time with the device, I was impressed with its general speed and responsiveness. That’s helped by the new Porsche Design mouse, which (naturally) is part-reinforced with carbon fibre.

There’s also a healthy port selection, including Thunderbolt 4, USB-A and USB-C. The latter can be used for fast charging, which Acer claims will get you 4 hours of usage in 30 minutes. There’s also a fingerprint scanner, unusually located within the trackpad. There’s no getting away from the fact that the whole keyboard looks similar to what you’d find on a MacBook, although it offers an impressive typing experience.

You might notice that I haven’t talked about the screen yet. That’s because it’s perhaps the main drawback of the Book RS – a 14in Full HD LCD panel. While it gets plenty bright and supports the full sRGB colour gamut, I was fully expecting OLED at this price point. It’s disappointing, although it definitely wouldn’t be a dealbreaker for me.

We’ve come to expect extremely high price tags from special edition products, and this is no different. The Porsche Design Acer Book RS will cost €1,799/US$1,399 when it launches in December. That goes up to €2,399/US$1,999 if you want to bundle it with the aforementioned mouse, carrying sleeve and pouch that cleverly doubles as a mousepad.

Do the specs justify that high asking price? Probably not. Do I still want one? Absolutely, yes.

The Acer Book RS perhaps doesn’t have mainstream appeal, but that’s the whole point. If you’re looking for something a bit more standard (and affordable!), check out our best laptop chart.

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