Acer Swift X14 review: a powerhouse machine with Ultrabook looks

Surprising power in a sleek package

Acer Swift X14 opened
(Image: © Future)

TechRadar Verdict

The Acer Swift X14 comes with a gorgeous screen, a fairly sleek Ultrabook profile, and an outsized amount of power thanks to its Nvidia GeForce RTX 4050 GPU. However, it's pricey and there are a couple issues with the trackpad and webcam. Still, this is an amazing option for those that want power in a slim package.

Pros

  • +

    Powerful performance

  • +

    Slim Ultrabook form factor

  • +

    Gorgeous 2.8K OLED screen with HDR

Cons

  • -

    Webcam doesn’t have facial recognition

  • -

    Somewhat pricey

  • -

    Trackpad can be kind of tricky

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Acer Swift X14: Two-minute review

Let’s get the easy part out of the way: I’m a fan of the Acer Swift X14. The short version of it is the fact that Acer managed to put a powerful CPU and GPU, not to mention a gorgeous OLED screen, in a slim Ultrabook package.

While it doesn’t feel as premium as a MacBook Pro 14, it truly belongs among the best Ultrabooks right now. There are certainly some trade-offs as the price is nowhere near close to the best cheap laptops and the battery life suffers a little since it has to power an Nvidia graphics card. I find the trackpad to be annoying to use as well. And, for a device legitimately vying for attention among the best laptops out there, it surprisingly skips out on a Windows Hello-capable webcam.

That said, the pros vastly outweigh the cons, especially if you don’t want to lug around a gaming computer and prefer the experience of using Ultrabooks, but still want the power of a gaming computer, whether that’s for booting up Cyberpunk 2077 or for some photo and video editing. When it comes to competing with the Dell XPSes of the world, the Acer Swift X14 may be one of the most surprising laptops I’ve used. 

Acer Swift X14 open front

(Image credit: Future)

Acer Swift X14: Price and availability

  • How much does it cost? Starting at $1,099 (about £870 / AU$1,670) 
  • When is it available? Available now 
  • Where can you get it? Available in the US, UK, and Australia 

The Acer Swift X14 is not the most affordable laptop out there. While its most basic configuration is available for $1,099 / AU$2,699 (about £870), which is certainly affordable – this is a model that comes with an 13th-Gen Intel Core i5 and a last generation Nvidia GeForce RTX 3050, not to mention a 512GB SSD and a lower 1600p resolution – it seems to only still be available in the US and Australia.

For everyone else or those wanting a current gen 4000 series GPU, you’re looking at $1,499 / £1,429 (about AU$2,277). That gets you a faster 13th-Gen Intel Core i7, an Nvidia GeForce RTX 4050, 16GB of RAM, 1TB SSD, and a 2880 x 1800p screen. And, if you’re in the UK, there are some slight variations as you can pay £170 more for 32GB of RAM.

The Acer Swift X14 isn’t the only light and thin laptop to come with a powerful GPU. The Samsung Galaxy Book3 Ultra covers a lot of the same ground. In fact, our Galaxy Book3 Ultra review unit, which is the base model, has the same specs as the Acer Swift X14 including the screen (well, it’s AMOLED vs OLED), but goes for a much pricier $1799.99 / £2,649 / around AU$4,875. Of course, you can pay even more – $2399.99 / £3,049 / around AU$5,610 – for a configuration with a 13th-Gen Intel Core i9 and Nvidia GeForce RTX 4070.

That said, many Ultrabooks come with that premium price tag without the kind of hardware to keep up with a gaming laptop. For instance, as great as its performance is, the Lenovo Yoga 9i Gen 8 only has Intel Iris Xe graphics and goes for $1,399.99 / £1,440. At least, it has that same OLED screen with HDR.

Value: 4 / 5

Acer Swift X14: Specs

There are basically two configurations of the Acer Swift X14. The more affordable one isn’t available in the UK, and comes with a 13th-Gen Intel Core i5, a last-generation Nvidia GeForce RTX 3050, and 512GB SSD. 

The more expensive configuration that we've reviewed here upgrades the CPU to an i7, the GPU to a 4050, and the SSD to 1TB of storage. And, in the UK, you can spend a little more for 32GB of RAM instead of 16GB. 

Swipe to scroll horizontally
Header Cell - Column 0 Acer Swift X14 base configurationAcer Swift X14 review configurationAcer Swift X14 max configuration
Price $1,099 / AU$2,699.00 (about £870)$1,499 / £1,429 (about AU$2,277)£1,599 (about $2,019 / $3,070)
CPUi5-13500Hi7-13700Hi7-13700H
Graphics Nvidia GeForce RTX 3050Nvidia GeForce RTX 4050Nvidia GeForce RTX 4050
RAM16GB LPDDR516GB LPDDR532GB LPDDR5
Screen14.5″ 2.8K (2880 x 1800) OLED 16:10120Hz non-touch display, Vesa Certified Display HDR True Black 50014.5″ 2.8K (2880 x 1800) OLED 16:10 120Hz non-touch display, Vesa Certified Display HDR True Black 50014.5″ 2.8K (2880 x 1800) OLED 16:10 120Hz non-touch display, Vesa Certified Display HDR True Black 500
Storage512GB M.2 PCIe SSD1TB M.2 PCIe SSD1TB M.2 PCIe SSD
Ports2x USB-C, 2x USB-A, HDMI, 3.5mm Combo-Jack, MicroSD card reader2x USB-C, 2x USB-A, HDMI, 3.5mm Combo-Jack, MicroSD card reader2x USB-C, 2x USB-A, HDMI, 3.5mm Combo-Jack, MicroSD card reader
WirelessWireless Wi-Fi 6E 1675i, Bluetooth 5.1Wireless Wi-Fi 6E 1675i, Bluetooth 5.1Wireless Wi-Fi 6E 1675i, Bluetooth 5.1
Camera1080p @ 30Hz webcam1080p @ 30Hz webcam1080p @ 30Hz webcam
Weight1.5kg (3.31lbs)1.5kg (3.31lbs)1.5kg (3.31lbs)
Dimensions17.8 x 322.5 x 228.6mm (0.70 x 12.7 x 9 inches)17.8 x 322.5 x 228.6mm (0.70 x 12.7 x 9 inches)17.8 x 322.5 x 228.6mm (0.70 x 12.7 x 9 inches)

Beyond the internal components, there aren’t any additional variations as there aren’t different colorways except for the screen. If you go with the cheaper model, you also have a slightly lower resolution (2560 x 1600p). 

Acer Swift X14 closed lid

(Image credit: Future)

Acer Swift X14: Design

  • Gorgeous display with HDR and accurate colors 
  • Trackpad has issues with dragging and dropping 
  • Webcam doesn’t support Windows Hello, but fingerprint reader does 

The Acer Swift X14, like most Ultrabooks, comes in an elegant if discreet shade of gray called 'Steel Gray'. It doesn’t quite set itself apart from the pack visually, but it certainly looks good and is light and diminutive enough for easy on-the-go computing.

The display is probably the most impressive outward-facing feature on this laptop as the 14.5-inch OLED screen comes with a sharp 2.8K (2880 x 1800) resolution that runs natively at 120Hz for smoother results. Plus, it comes with Vesa Certified Display HDR True Black 500 to really make the colors pop.

The colors are definitely impressive. Not only is it incredibly accurate, measured at Delta E of 0.09, but it has fantastic color coverage, making this laptop more than good enough for video and photo editing. Specifically, it has 195% sRGB and 138.1% DCI-P3.

The keyboard is good enough, though I wouldn’t consider it to be the most comfortable I’ve ever used. The trackpad, however, gave me some issues. It’s nice to the touch and moving the cursor around is smooth, but the trackpad didn’t seem to want to cooperate when dragging and dropping unless I had my fingers positioned very accurately.

Acer Swift X14 keyboard and trackpad

(Image credit: Future)

At least the port selection is robust enough for an Ultrabook with two USB-C ports (that are also Thunderbolt 4 / USB 4), two USB-A, an HDMI, and a microSD reader, along with the requisite headphone jack. Those worried about security will be happy to note that there’s a Kensington lock as well.

Beyond that, there’s a 1080p webcam that unfortunately doesn’t support Windows Hello Facial Recognition. However, there’s a fingerprint reader in the power button for that purpose.

There are some aspects of the Acer Swift X14 that are a bit hard to pin down but worth mentioning and that is in regards to its use in AI tech. The laptop supports Windows Copilot, enhancements for the webcam and mic, as well as using AI to accelerate the performance of a number of apps.

Design: 4 / 5

Acer Swift X14 left ports

(Image credit: Future)

Acer Swift X14: Performance

  • Fast render scores 
  • Powerful gaming performance 
  • Good thermal performance 
Acer Swift X14: Benchmarks

Here's how the Acer Swift X14 performed in our suite of benchmark tests:

3DMark: Night Raid: 27,076; Fire Strike: 13,642; Time Spy: 5,730
GeekBench 6: 2,500 (single-core); 12,118 (multi-core)
Sid Meier's Civilization VI: Gathering Storm:
92.030fps @1080p
25GB File Copy: 13.7
Handbrake 1.6: 7:46
CrossMark: Overall: 1,924 Productivity: 1,847 Creativity: 2,022 Responsiveness: 1,872
Web Surfing (Battery Informant): 7:26:37 @ 60Hz 

Whether that AI acceleration puts the Acer Swift X14 over the top or it’s just a matter of powerful components, the performance of this laptop is a dream. With its 13th-Gen Intel Core i7, Nvidia GeForce RTX 4050, and 16GB of RAM, it’s no wonder that it can easily handle day-to-day work without breaking a sweat.

But, it can handle much more intensive workloads as well. Taking a quick look at the benchmarks, its 3DMark scores are much higher than the Lenovo Yoga 9i Gen 8 mentioned before and its Handbrake score, which measures how quickly a computer can render video, is two minutes faster. This is surely due to that powerful GPU.

I was also able to capably game on this laptop as well, running titles like Starfield and Gotham Knights on fairly high settings, certainly on par with settings I’ve used on gaming laptops equipped with the Nvidia GeForce RTX 4050.

Acer Swift X14 screen

(Image credit: Future)

Since the screen is an OLED panel with HDR as well as that great color coverage and accuracy, images pop and look rich and vibrant.

Really, every aspect of the Acer Swift X14’s performance is to be lauded in my opinion. Even its thermal performance is good, with it only really heating up underneath a bit when pushed.

The webcam is clear and sharp with auto framing, and comes with a feature that can make it look like you’re making eye contact with whomever you’re on a video call with (rather than looking down at the screen).

The audio quality is, as it is with most laptops, passable. It lacks some low-end and can be just a little hollow sounding, but it’s not bad and about what I would expect from a laptop like this.

Performance: 5 / 5

Acer Swift X14 underneath venting

(Image credit: Future)

Acer Swift X14: Battery life

  • Good battery life considering hardware 
  • Fast charging on hand 

Since the Acer Swift X14 has to power some robust components, it’s no wonder that it doesn’t have the battery life of a lot of other Ultrabooks. 

Make no mistake, a benchmark score of 7:26:37 for the Battery Informant test (though at 60Hz) is pretty good when compared to gaming laptops with similar internals, which are considered to have amazing battery lives when reaching the same scores, but don’t expect the 15 hours that you would get with a MacBook. And, if you run this laptop hard, expect that battery to go down pretty quickly.

It does seem to charge up pretty quickly when plugged in. However, it does seem to not quite hold onto its charge as well as it should when the lid is closed. But, this seems to be something that most Windows laptops don’t do as well as they should.

Battery life: 4 / 5

Acer Swift X14 screen close up

(Image credit: Future)

Should I buy the Acer Swift X14?

Swipe to scroll horizontally
Attributes NotesRating
ValueConsidering the hardware and slim package, the price is not bad, but it is a little pricey.4 / 5
DesignThe Acer Swift X14 has a lot going for it design-wise, but is held back by a few issues with the trackpad and webcam.4 / 5
Performance Who knew that an Ultrabook could keep up performance-wise with gaming laptops. This one can.5 / 5
BatteryThe battery life is not up to par when compared to Ultrabooks, but is reasonable considering the hardware inside.4 / 5
Average ratingThe performance on tap overwhelms any real issues with this laptop and makes it an easy recommendation for those that need to push their laptop a bit.4.5 / 5

Buy it if… 

You need great performance
With that Nvidia GeForce RTX 4050 on hand, there’s little the Acer Swift X14 can’t do. This seemingly petite laptop has the power for gaming and video editing. You can’t say that about most Ultrabooks.

You need a gorgeous screen
Not only is the OLED screen a pleasure to look at with its fantastic HDR, but the colors are wide enough and accurate enough to do real photo and video editing on.

Don't buy it if... 

You don’t need a lot of computer
There are plenty of laptops that cost significantly less that are good enough for most people who don’t need all that performance.

You’re on a budget
This is not a cheap laptop. With everything on offer, the pricing makes sense, but you’re still somewhat in premium pricing territory.

Also consider

Swipe to scroll horizontally
Header Cell - Column 0 Acer Swift X14 Samsung Galaxy Book3 UltraAcer Aspire 5 Spin 14
Price$1,099 / AU$2,699.00 (about £870)$1799.99 / £2,649 / around AU$4,875$749.99 / AU$1399 (not available in the UK)
CPUi5-13500HIntel Core i7-13700HIntel Core i5-1335U (10 core)
Graphics Nvidia GeForce RTX 3050Nvidia GeForce RTX 4050Intel Iris Xe Integrated Graphics
RAM16GB LPDDR516GB8GB LPDDR5
Screen14.5″ 2.8K (2880 x 1800) OLED 16:10120Hz non-touch display, Vesa Certified Display HDR True Black 50016.0'' 3K (2880 x 1800) AMOLED14" WUXGA (1920 x 1200) 16:10 60 Hz Touchscreen
Storage 512GB M.2 PCIe SSD1TB SSD 512GB SSD
Ports 2x USB-C, 2x USB-A, HDMI, 3.5mm Combo-Jack, MicroSD card readerRow 6 - Cell 2 1x Thunderbolt 4 (USB-C), HDMI, 2.1, 3.5mm headphone jack, 2x USB 3.2 Gen Type A
WirelessWireless Wi-Fi 6E 1675i, Bluetooth 5.1Wi-Fi 6E (Gig+) 802.11abgn/ac/ax, Bluetooth v5.1IEEE 802.11ax, Bluetooth 5.1
Camera 1080p @ 30Hz webcamRow 8 - Cell 2 1080p HD webcam
Weight1.5kg (3.31lbs)1.7kg (3.95 lbs)3.5 lbs (1.6kg)
Dimensions 17.8 x 322.5 x 228.6mm (0.70 x 12.7 x 9 inches)9.86 x 13.99 x 0.65 inches (W x H x D)12.5 x 8.9 x 0.71 inches (317.5 x 226.06 x 18mm)

If our Acer Swift X14 review has you considering other options, here are two laptops to consider...   

Lenovo Yoga 9i Gen 8
It may not have the powerful GPU of the Acer Swift X14, but it’s still quite powerful for most people’s needs. Plus, it has a similarly gorgeous OLED screen, but with touch capabilities and is a little bit lighter. Oh, and it comes in a distinctive Oatmeal colorway.

Read our full Lenovo Yoga 9i Gen 8 review 

Samsung Galaxy Book3 Ultra
If there’s a laptop that can give the Acer Swift X14 a run for its money, it’s the Samsung Galaxy Book3 Ultra, especially since it has basically the same components. Of course, it’s more expensive and has a shorter battery life. But, it’s just as robust and comes with just as gorgeous of a screen.

Read our full Samsung Galaxy Book3 Ultra review  

How I tested the Acer Swift X14

  • Tested for a couple weeks 
  • Used for regular work as well as gaming 
  • Used regularly unplugged 

Acer Swift X14 angled

(Image credit: Future)

I used the Acer Swift X14 for a couple weeks as a work computer. I did a decent amount of writing here, including this review. I also used it to do some gaming to see if it really had what it takes (clearly, it does). I took a look at all the features, not to mention used it regularly to see how it does unplugged.

After spending time with the Acer Swift X14, I was impressed by the fact that its power is more on par with a gaming computer than with its Ultrabook competition.

I’ve spent the last few years reviewing tech gear for gaming and otherwise, where I’ve gotten a feel for what to look for and how to put a piece of kit through its paces to see whether it’s worth the recommendation.

First reviewed February 2024 

James Holland
Freelancer

James Holland loves audio gear! So much so that he covers all the ins and outs, good and bad for Tech Radar and T3. Where does that so-called expertise come from? Not only is he a lifelong music-lover but he also works in the music industry and is a musician. When not testing headphones or listening to music, he loves to travel, rage at the latest PC games, and eat off-the-beaten-path but not too off-the-beaten-path food.