Acer TravelMate P6 (2021) Review: A super-light business laptop
It comes in an a black aluminum-magnesium chassis that weighs in at 2.2 pounds, or just less than one kilogram. That makes it super easy to carry, and it doesn’t compromise on performance or ports, offering 11th-gen vPro processors, modern ports like Thunderbolt 4, and legacy ports like USB Type-A.
Indeed, it’s a pretty sweet business laptop. For a business user that’s productivity focused and on-the-go, it’s easy to recommend.
Navigate this review:
- Acer TravelMate P6 (2021) Pricing and availability
- Acer TravelMate P6 (2021) specs
- Design: Super-light, but still stylish
- Display: The 14-inch FHD display is satisfactory
- Keyboard: It’s standard for Acer’s products
- Performance: Like all Acer laptops, it comes with a ton of bloatware
- Should you buy the Acer TravelMate P6 (2021)?
Acer TravelMate P6 (2021) Pricing and availability
- The Acer TravelMate P6 starts at $1,299.99 and is available now.
Refreshed in 2021, Acer’s TravelMate P6 doesn’t have a whole lot of configurations. You pretty much get a Core i5-1135G7 model with a 512GB SSD for $1,299.99, or a Core i7-1165G7 model with a 1TB SSD for $1,499 (Acer sent me the latter for review). There might be other models from some retailers that I’m unaware of, but these are the ones that show up on Acer’s website.
The rest of them are the same. They both come with 16GB LPDDR4x memory, and they have a 14-inch 16:10 1,920×1,200 display. Probably even more importantly, they weigh in at 2.2 pounds, considering that the ultra-light form factor is a key feature of the device.
Acer TravelMate P6 (2021) specs
|CPU||Up to Intel CoreTM i7-1165G7 processor (12 MB Smart Cache, 2.8 GHz with Turbo Boost up to 4.7 GHz, DDR4 or LPDDR4x, Intel Iris Xe Graphics)|
|Graphics||Intel Iris Xe Graphics, supporting OpenGL 4.5, OpenCLTM 2.2, Microsoft DirectX 12|
|Display||14” display with IPS (In-Plane Switching) technology, Full HD+ 1920 x 1200, high-brightness (340 nits) Acer ComfyView LED-backlit TFT LCD. Wide viewing angle up to 170 degrees.|
|Body||12.28 x 8.9 x 0.66 inches, 2.2 pounds|
|Memory||Dual-channel LPDDR4X SDRAM support
|Storage||Solid state drive
|Ports and interfaces||USB Type-C port supporting:
One USB 3.2 Gen 2 port featuring power-off USB charging
|Keyboard and touchpad||Keyboard:
83-/84-/87-key Acer FineTip keyboard with international language support
Multi-gesture touchpad, supporting two-finger scroll; pinch; gestures to open Cortana,
Action Center, multitasking; application commands
|OS||Windows 11 Pro|
About this review: Acer shared the TravelMate P6 with us for review. It did not have any input in this review.
Design: Super-light, but still stylish
- The Acer TravelMate P6 weighs a kilogram.
- It comes in black with silver accents.
I really like reviewing super-light laptops like this one, which comes in at just 2.2 pounds. There’s something about devices at that kilogram mark that are just delightful. They’re so easy to carry around in a bag that you’ll forget they’re even there. They’re comfortable to use when you’re just lounging around the house.
The lid has a squared-off Acer logo stamped in the corner, which is typical for the company’s business laptops. The consumer notebooks tend to have a logo stamped in the middle, which is more flashy. This is meant to be a cleaner design.
As for ports, there are lots of them, something that you’d expect from a business laptop. On the left side alone, there are dual Thunderbolt 4 ports, a USB 3.2 Gen 2 Type-A port, and HDMI. Either of those Thunderbolt 4 ports can connect to dual 4K monitors, one 8K monitor, an external GPU, or something else.
On the right side, you’ll find the 3,5mm audio jack and a microSD card slot. A microSD card slot is always welcome, even if it’s not quite as useful as a full-size one.
I really like the design of this laptop, as I do with a lot of Acer’s laptops. The company makes magnesium sexy. I’ve seen Swift laptops in blue with silver accents or green with gold accents, but for a TravelMate, the design needs to be a little more subtle. That’s why we have a sort of metallic black with silver accents. And of course, it only weighs a kilogram.
Display: The 14-inch FHD display is pretty good, and it’s 16:10
- The matte, anti-glare display is better than a lot of Acer laptops that I’ve used.
- The FHD webcam is excellent.
The Acer TravelMate P6 comes with a 14-inch 1,920×1,200 display, and yes, that resolution means that it has a 16:10 aspect ratio, something that’s becoming more and more common. 16:10, as opposed to 16:9, it taller, and it has more surface area. Screens are measured diagonally, so the closer the aspect ratio gets to square, the more surface area you get.
It’s a matte non-touch display, but it doesn’t suffer from some of the pitfalls I’ve seen on anti-glare screens in the past. In fact, this is actually a better display than I’ve seen from a lot of Acer laptops.
As you can see, it supports 100% sRGB, 78% NTSC, 83% Adobe RGB, and 85% P3. That’s pretty solid, at least compared to the rest of the market. 100% sRGB isn’t uncommon for a laptop to obtain, but averaging in the 80s for the rest of the categories is pretty good.
Brightness maxed out at 366.9, which exceeds the 340 nits promised by Acer but still less than I’d like in a laptop. It’s not going to be great for outdoor use. Contrast is 1250:1, which is pretty good.
Keyboard: It’s standard for Acer’s products
- The keyboard is backlit and it has a Microsoft Precision touchpad.
The keyboard and touchpad on the Acer TravelMate P6 are pretty straightforward. The keyboard is Chiclet-style, and it’s pretty standard for Acer’s laptops. It’s fine, but frankly, it just doesn’t compete with some of the phenomenal stuff that HP and Lenovo are doing with their business laptop keyboards.
The keyboard is backlit, which is good, but the keys themselves feel pretty standard. It’s not particularly quiet, it doesn’t have that particularly comfortable force curve that we see from other laptops, and so on. It’s definitely accurate, but other than that, it’s average, which is fine.
As you can see, the Precision touchpad doesn’t quite make use of the available real estate that it could, although it still feels big enough. I just personally want touchpads to be as large as possible.
Performance: Like all Acer laptops, it comes with a ton of bloatware
- You’ll have to spend some time getting rid of bloatware.
- It has 11th-gen Intel processors.
The model that Acer sent me includes a Core i7-1165G7, 16GB RAM, and a 1TB SSD, which is pretty sweet. It’s also got a pretty sizable 56WHr battery, and unfortunately, a ton of bloatware.
You can identify bloatware in a number of ways. Some people consider any pre-installed software that they don’t find useful to be bloatware, and while that’s fair, that’s not the definition that we’re going for here. We’re not even going to talk about the bloatware that Microsoft installs with Windows, such as Solitaire Collection, although that would be fair too. The difference is that Microsoft’s bloatware is a constant across the Windows landscape. No, we’re talking about software that’s been separately installed by Acer.
Let’s take a look at some of what’s pre-installed on the Acer TravelMate P6:
- Acer Jumpstart
- Acer Product Registration
- Acer ProShield Plus
- Aura Privacy
- Control Center
- Dropbox Promotion
- Norton Security Ultra
Believe it or not, this is actually impressive compared to a consumer Acer laptop, which usually contains an array of games as well. My biggest issue is with things like Norton, Evernote, and Firefox. They’re all there to compete with something that’s already in Windows. It reminds me of the older days of Android phones when they’d all have two of everything, one from Google and one from the OEM.
Some of it is super useful. Acer ProShield Plus is great. You can drag and drop files into it to encrypt or decrypt them, there’s a File Shredder functionality that overwrites the data so it can’t be recovered, you can make a partition as a Personal Secure Drive, you can control which kinds of USB devices can be used, and more. It’s phenomenal. ProShield Plus is a one-stop shop for all of your security needs that you’d expect from a business laptop.
But ProShield Plus is really all we should be getting from Acer here. You shouldn’t have a shortcut to Booking.com on the Start Menu of a business laptop.
It’s easy enough to get rid of this stuff, as you can just uninstall it. Like I said, there’s a lot less useless stuff than on an Acer consumer laptop, so it doesn’t even take a lot of time.
Performance and battery life
The Acer TravelMate P6 checks the right boxes for a business laptop. Sure, 12th-gen processors are better than 11th-gen, and I’m sure Acer will refresh the product at some point. But still, for a productivity machine on the go, this thing is nearly perfect.
If you’re doing your work in the browser or something similar that’s not graphics-intensive, this gets the job done. Speaking of graphics though, the Iris Xe graphics in 12th-gen chips are mostly the same as in 11th-gen, so you’re really not missing anything there. My work load, as usual, consists of having over a dozen tabs open in a Chromium browser (the browser varies, but these days, it’s usually Vivaldi), while using other apps like OneNote, Skype, Slack, and Photoshop. There were no pain points in usage.
|Acer TravelMate P6
|Lenovo ThinkPad Titanium Yoga
|HP EliteBook 840 Aero G8
|Geekbench 5||1,427 / 4,887||1,333 / 4,055||1,518 / 4,966|
|Cinebench R23||1,362 / 4,690||1,127 / 2,597||1,296 / 3,975|
|3DMark: Time Spy||1,618||1,334||1,560|
Interestingly, when I sort my benchmark scores by PCMark 10 scores, the Acer TravelMate P6 aligns more with the lower-watt Tiger Lake UP4 chips, like the one in the Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Titanium Yoga.
Battery life is solid, maxing out at just below six hours. The way I test laptops is by using them. Then, I create battery reports and average the times, so this is real-world usage, as opposed to streaming video constantly or something. On average, it got between five and five and a half hours, which is still better than many of the laptops that I test. It’s impressive.
Should you buy the Acer TravelMate P6 (2021)?
As is the case with everything, the Acer TravelMate P6 is not for everyone.
Who should buy the Acer TravelMate P6:
- Business professionals that are on-the-go and need something portable
- People who want something that’s great for productivity, and has some additional security features
Who should not buy the Acer TravelMate P6:
- Consumers that want a laptop for consumption
- Anyone that needs dedicated graphics
I found the Acer TravelMate P6 to be an excellent laptop that checks all of the right boxes. It’s a great business laptop, but it seems to be something that would be great for almost everyone.