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Acer Predator Helios 300 Full Review : Super Fast Gaming Laptop

Recently, high-performance laptops with high specifications have been demanded to not just be gaming laptops. The ability to complete heavy productivity tasks such as video editing, 3D rendering, and other multitasking design work, has become a must. Like the Acer Predator Helios 300 laptop which we will review below.

acer-predator-helios-300-reviews

With a price range of $1,699, carrying the latest 8 Core 16 Thread and RTX 3060 processor, this laptop should be ready to be a burden horse for gamers and content creators.

The Predator Helios 300 is a high-end gaming laptop from Acer. This laptop brings a variety of hardware updates that are quite striking compared to the previous version. Where the processor already uses an 11th generation Intel Core H45 series, which is paired with an NVIDIA GeForce RTX 30 series GPU.

Immediately, we see the full review of the Acer Predator Helios 300 below.

Acer Predator Helios 300 Specification Review

Processor : Intel® Core™ i7-8750H 9M Cache, up to 4.10 GHz
Memory : 2 x 8 GB DDR4 upgradeable to 32 GB
Operating System : Windows 10
Display : 15.6 inch IPS FHD 144Hz
Graphic : NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060 with 6GB GDDR5 VRAM
Storage : SSD 256 GB, HDD 1 TB
Optical Drive : Super-Multi DVD
Keyboard : gaming keyboard
Card Reader : SD card reader
WebCam : HD Camera dengan high dynamic range imaging support
Networking : Bluetooth
Built-in Bluetooth V4.0
Wi-Fi
Integrated 802.11b/g/n
Interface : 2 x USB 3.0 port featuring power off USB charging
1 x USB 3.1 type C Gen 1
1 x HDMI 2.0
1 x RJ45
3.5 mm universal jack
DC-in jack foc AC adapter
Audio : 2 built ini stereo speakers
Acer trueharmony TM technology
Certified for skype for business
Dolby Audio TM premium
Cortana with voice
Battery : 4 cells 48 Whr, life up to 7 hours
Power Adapter : AC adapter 135 W
Dimensions : 39 cm x 27 cm x 2.7 cm
Weight : 3 kg

The version we tested is slightly different from the products sold in the market. The Acer Predator Helios 300, which we will review, uses the following specifications.

  • Intel Core i7-11800H

  • Tiger Lake-H
  • 10nm SuperFin 
  • 10th Gen Intel Core H-series processors still use the 14nm fab
  • Configurable TDP-up 45W
  • 8-Core/16-Thread
  • Max Turbo Frequency 4.6 GHz
  • 24 MB Intel Smart Cache
  • For comparison, the Intel Core i7-10875H processor has 16 MB Intel Smart Cache
  • 50% bigger
  • Equipped with 20 Lane PCIe 4.0 directly connected to the processor

  • 32 GB DDR4-3200 SODIMM Dual Channel

  • 2 Slot SODIMM
  • For the version sold, it has a RAM configuration of 16 GB DDR4-3200 SODIMM Single Channel
  • Expandable to 32 GB Dual Channel by adding one more SODIMM to the available free slot

  • Storage

  • Using 2x 1TB PCIe NVMe SSDs configured RAID 0
  • There is still 2 TB 2.5 inch SATA SSD
  • For the version sold, it will have 512 GB SSD PCIe NVMe Storage
  • There is 1 M.2 slot and 1 additional 2.5 inch SATA slot that is still empty

  • NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3070 Laptop GPU

  • Max Power Limit at 110W
  • 8 GB GDDR6
  • 5120 CUDA Colors
  • Base Clock 780 MHz
  • Boost Clock 1290 MHz
  • The Resizable BAR feature is active on this laptop
  • This feature allows the processor to fully access the entire VRAM capacity of the discrete GPU

  • Intel UHD Graphics

  • Xe Graphics Architecture – the same graphics architecture as used in Intel's Tiger Lake-U processors
  • 32 Execution Units

Acer Predator Helios 300 Design Review

This laptop carries a classic Clamshell/laptop form factor, with the material used is a combination of metal and polycarbonate. The design looks very Gaming, typical of the Predator class. It still looks similar to the previous generation Predator.

acer-predator-helios-300-reviews-design

The top of the keyboard there is a kind of grille motif that functions as an air vent. There is a Predator logo on the back of the screen whose outline can glow blue – the Predator theme color.

The color that is carried is Black / Black, with dimensions of 36.3 cm long, 25.5 cm wide, and 2.29 cm thick. As for the weight, the laptop weighs 2.31 kg, with a charger adapter of 701 grams. So that the total amount that will be transported by the user is 3.01 Kg.

Turning to the screen, the specifications installed on the Acer Predator Helios 300 unit that we reviewed are a 15.6-inch IPS panel with Full HD resolution (1920 x 1080 pixels). However, the units that will be available in the market will have a QHD resolution (2560 x 1440 pixels).

This screen has a refresh rate of 144 Hz, which in sales units has a refresh rate of 165 Hz. Yes, both of them have brought a high refresh rate typical of gaming laptop screens.

Meanwhile, the color range is Close to 100% sRGB, and for the version for sale, it even has a color gamut at 100% DCI-P3. Of course, with this high color accuracy, it is very suitable for content creation needs.

The screen has a brightness of 300 nits, and carries CineCrystal Display technology; Acer's term for Anti-Glare screens. This makes it comfortable to use without distracting light reflections. The bezel uses a Full-Narrow Display, where the right and left frames are made thin and the top frame is a little thick because there is a 720p 30fps camera.

In the audio aspect, this laptop uses Dual stereo speakers by DTS. The speakers are located on the bottom right and left of the laptop, Audio Presets can be configured via the DTS:X Ultra software or through the Acer True Harmony menu in the PredatorSense software.

For ports and connectors, this laptop has the following:

Connector

  • Left
  • 1x Kensington Lock
  • 1x Ethernet Port
  • 2x USB 3.2 Gen 1 (5 Gbps)
  • 1x Audio Jack Combo 3.5mm
  • Right
  • 1x Thunderbolt 4 (40 Gbps) supported
  • USB 4
  • Display Output using DisplayPort protocol
  • Use of Thunderbolt devices such as eGPU and External Storage
  • 1x USB 3.2 Gen 2 (10 Gbps)
  • 1x HDMI
  • 1x Mini Display Port
  • Behind
  • 1x DC-IN
acer-predator-helios-300-reviews-left-connector

acer-predator-helios-300-reviews-right-connector

acer-predator-helios-300-reviews-behind-connector

Connectivity is using the Intel Killer E2600 Ethernet Controller with Intel Killer Wi-Fi 6 (AX1650i) technology. It supports Gigabit WiFi, MU-MIMO and also has Bluetooth v5.2 connectivity.

The keyboard layout that is carried is typical of the Acer Predator Helios, where there is still a numpad button on the right. There is a special button to call the PredatorSense software, and there is a kind of blue border on the WASD button, arrow keys and PredatorSense button.

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acer-predator-helios-300-reviews-button-keyboard

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The power button blends into the keyboard layout. The keyboard is RGB backlit with 4 color zones and 4 brightness levels. Color settings can be done in the PredatorSense software.

The touchpad is located centered to the spacebar, so it doesn't interfere when used for typing. There are no special left and right click buttons, but it supports the Windows Precision Driver feature.

Performance Test Software Predator Sense

Users can monitor temperature and hardware usage through this software. In addition, there are also 4 Performance Control Modes
  • Quiet
  • Default
  • Extreme – Processor performance is more improved than Default mode
  • Turbo – Performance and fan speed will be set at Maximum
    • There is a special button on the top-left of the keyboard to activate Turbo mode directly
There is also a fan control menu with 3 presets:
  • Auto
  • Max
  • Custom – users can set the fan speed they want
All tests will be carried out in Turbo conditions with a MAX fan

Performance Consistency – Cinebench R15

  • In default mode, the Intel Core i7-11800H processor on the Acer Predator Helios 300 is able to achieve the highest score at 2186 points
  • When using Turbo mode, the highest score can be pushed even more, reaching 2212 points
  • Both in Default and Turbo mode, the score is quite high for a laptop processor with 8-Core/16-Thread
  • For comparison, the Intel Core i7-10870H processor which both has 8-Core/16-Thread has a maximum score of 1730 points.
  • Seen an increase of 27.8% compared to the previous generation
  • In Default mode, the sustain performance of the processor can be held in the range of 1800-2000 points, and then slowly drops to 1500-1800 when entering the 17th to 20th Runs.
  • In Turbo mode, sustain performance can be held higher, and seems to tend to be more stable, with the 2nd to 4th run having a score of 2100s, and the next run having a score in the range of 1900-2000 points.
  • After we checked, in Turbo mode it was seen that the Acer Predator Helios 300 had CPU Package Power at 100W at the beginning of the run, and several times it touched 95W at the start of each subsequent run.
  • It is also seen that the CPU Package Power is in the range of 67-71 W when sustaining performance (mid run).

Adobe Premiere Pro CC 2021

4K Render Test
  • Source Video – 4K 60 fps | Duration 2 minutes 7 seconds
  • Editing
    • Color Correction
    • Multi-layer
  • Output – Youtube 4K 60
    • Mercury Playback Engine Software Only
      • 9 minutes 8 seconds
    • Mercury Playback Engine GPU Acceleration (CUDA)
      • 1 minute 47 seconds

Full HD Render Test
  • Source Video – 1080p 60 fps | Duration 2 minutes 7 seconds
  • Editing
    • Color Correction
    • Multi-layer
  • Output – Youtube 1080p
    • Mercury Playback Engine Software Only
      • 3 minutes 40 seconds
    • Mercury Playback Engine GPU Acceleration (CUDA)
      • 40 seconds

Blender 2.92

BMW27 Render Scene (1080p, Rendering Scale 50%)
  • CPU Renderer – 3 minutes 21 seconds
  • GPU Renderer – 35 seconds

3DMark

Fire Strike – Graphic Score
  • 23687 points
  • For comparison, the RTX 2070 Super with Max-Q Design on the previous generation Predator Helios has a score of 18114 points.
  • Seen an increase of 7%

Gaming Test

  • CSGO – 1080p Low
    • 330-500 fps
  • Dota 2 – 1080p Fastest | Screen Renderer 100%
    • 155-185 fps
    • Light scenes reach 210 fps
  • Shadow of the Tomb Raider – 1080p Highest | Ray Tracing Medium
    • 80-100 fps
  • Death Stranding – 1080p Very High | DLSS Quality
    • 110-130 fps
  • Assassin’s Creed Valhalla – 1080p Ultra High
    • 60-70 fps
    • Occasional drop to 58-59 fps
  • Cyberpunk 2077 – 1080p High | Ray-Tracing Medium
    • 60-75 fps
    • Occasional drop to 55 fps

CrystalDiskMark

  • Read – 4065 MB/s
  • Write – 10342 MB/s
Note that the SSD on the unit we tested had a RAID 0 configuration.

Battery

As usual, in this Acer Predator Helio 300 review test, we played 1080p video playback from full to empty battery. The laptop is set to Default Mode, Brightness 50% and Volume 25%. And the result is that the laptop is able to play for 4 hours 30 minutes.

As for charging, this laptop can charge with the following process:
  • 30 minutes – 39%
  • 60 minutes – 72%
  • 90 minutes – 96%
  • 102 minutes – 100%

Cooling System

Acer Predator Helios has an active cooling system with 5th Gen Aeroblade ™ 3D Technology. There are 2 fans with ultra-thin metal blades, with 89 blades per fan, and the blade thickness is only 0.08 mm. The previous generation fan had 59 blades with a thickness of 0.1 mm.

Using Bionic Design, the blade edges look jagged, which is claimed to increase airflow in the fan. There are 3 heatpipes and a heatsink covering the CPU, GPU, VRM and VRAM components. Air circulation, namely air intake from below and above, with 4 exhaust holes towards the back and the right and left sides of the laptop.

Working Temperature – Hwinfo
Performed in Turbo mode with Fan MAX settings

Synthetic Benchmark Software:
  • CPU – Cinebench R15
    • Processor temperature at the start of the test was in the range of 90-93 degrees Celsius
    • Entering the 5th run, the spike at the beginning of each run is in the range of 93 degrees Celsius
    • The temperature of the sustain performance when entering the middle of the run is in the range of 75-85 degrees Celsius
  • GPU – 3DMark Fire Strike
    • Sustain in the range of 68-70 degrees Celsius
Software Content Creator & Game:
  • Blender 2.92
    • CPU temperature is in the range of 60-70 degrees Celsius
    • GPU temperature is in the range of 62-65 degrees Celsius
  • Assassin's Creed Valhalla – 30 minutes of gameplay
    • CPU temperature is in the range of 70-80 degrees Celsius
      • With occasional spikes to 85-88 degrees Celsius
    • GPU temperature is in the range of 68-73 degrees Celsius

Surface Temperature – FlirONE

Done by playing Assassin's Creed Valhalla for 30 minutes
  • The right palmrest area is in the range of 37-40 degrees Celsius
  • Left palmrest area in the range of 31-34 degrees Celsius
  • The keyboard surface around the WASD letters is at 35-39 degrees Celsius
  • The center area of   the keyboard is at 39-45 degrees Celsius
    • The hottest area is in the bottom center, near the CTRL key, reaching 48 degrees Celsius
  • The numpad area is in the range of 37-42 degrees Celsius

Price & Warranty

The Acer Predator Helios 300 will be sold starting at $1,699, for the variant that uses the NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3060 Laptop GPU. For the version of the Acer Predator Helios 300 that we reviewed, namely the RTX 3070 Laptop GPU, we have not received information about the price of the product.

All sales units include:
  • Windows 10 Home
  • Microsoft Office Home and Student 2019
  • 3 Years Warranty covering service and spare parts

Conclusion

Do you want to be gamers, content creators, or both? Or doing other jobs that require high laptop performance, the Acer Predator Helios 300 is able to complete it. The combination of extra high performance, maintained working temperature, and a solid screen makes it ready for even the toughest of needs.

From the overall testing of the Acer Predator Helios 300 review, we take some conclusions as follows.

Things to note

  • Please note that the unit we tested was a sample unit, and slightly different from the units that will be sold in the market
  • All of the above tests were carried out with a 32GB Dual Channel RAM configuration
    • Units sold have 16 GB RAM with Single Channel configuration
    • Can still be upgraded because there are 2 SODIMM slots
  • Battery life is not good enough
    • However, the use of gaming laptops will be more often connected to a power source / plugged into a charger

Interesting Points

  • “Really gaming” design
  • Gaming laptop with maximum performance
    • Using the latest very fast 11th generation Intel Core processor
      • Not many laptop processors in 8-Core/16-Thread in this price range are able to achieve this high Cinebench score
    • Already using NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3070 Laptop GPU
      • Very suitable for playing AAA games with high graphics quality
      • Playing esports is also okay, because it can run at hundreds of FPS
      • Supports Ray-Tracing and DLSS 2.0 . features
    • The temperature is quite okay when used to play games, and to run Content Creation software
    • Abundant storage upgrade options
      • There is 1 slot M.2 and 1 2.5-inch SATA slot that is still empty
    • Very good screen
      • Suitable for gaming with a refresh rate of 165 Hz
      • Suitable for Content Creation with Color Gamut at 100% DCI-P3
    • Abundant connector
      • Complete with Thunderbolt 4
    • There are fans and performance control
    • Very long warranty period – 3 years