Acer’s New Swift 3X Notebook, with Intel Iris Xᵉ MAX Discrete Graphics, from $900

At Acer’s global press conference today, one of the hot ticket items was the announcement of an upcoming laptop featuring an Intel’s discrete graphics option. The new Intel Xe graphics architecture, which debuted in Intel 11th Gen Tiger Lake notebook processors, is now set to see the launch of an additional higher power discrete graphics option and coming to notebooks first. One of those devices will be the Acer Swift 3X, with both Tiger Lake and discrete Xe MAX inside.

The Swift 3X (SF314-510G) is a notebook with a 14-inch 1080p IPS display, peaking at 300 nits brightness, and will be offered with up to 16 GB of LPDDR4X memory as well as 512 GB of Optane+QLC or up to 1 TB of NVMe storage. The unit will have Wi-Fi 6 support, and is rated for up to 17.5 hours battery life. Weight tips the scales at 3 lbs.

This device seems like a typical Swift 3-esque notebook, with a backlit chicklet keypad, a good sized trackpad, a fingerprint scanner, good bezels, and a webcam up top. The hinge mechanism lifts the laptop up slightly to create some additional airflow. There is a HDMI output, two full sized USB Type-A, and a Type-C that could be Thunderbolt but it is unclear.

Processor options are the top line Intel Core i7-1165G7 or Core i5-1135G7 – there’s no direct indication about what power level these are set to (a drawback of Intel’s non-fixed TDP marketing messaging), so these could very well be 12 W models with 1.2 GHz base frequency.

All that information aside, what you’re really after is the Intel Iris Xe MAX discrete graphics information – core counts, frequencies, power consumption, that sort of thing. Unfortunately Acer hasn’t released any additional information here – the chassis looks sturdy enough that it can handle some extra wattage above the 12 W suggested for Tiger Lake at least.

What you might be shocked to find out is that this model is due for release in China by the end of the month. This might be because entry level discrete graphics options are more favored in the APAC market. We’ve asked Acer if they can expand on reasoning here – it may very well be supply chain oriented due to the pandemic.

Acer plans to launch the unit in China first in October, Europe in November, and North America in December. Prices will start at $900 / €850 / 4999 RMB.