Skip to main content

Digital Trends may earn a commission when you buy through links on our site. Why trust us?

Acer Nitro 5 Spin vs. Lenovo Yoga 720 15

Best 2-in-1 for gaming? Here's how Acer's Nitro 5 Spin compares to the Yoga 720

Image used with permission by copyright holder

Windows notebook makers aren’t shy about mixing and matching product categories. Usually, gaming notebooks are very specific kinds of machines aimed at particular buyers and convertible 2-in-1s are something very different. Acer thinks there’s some overlap, however, and so it made the Nitro 5 Spin — a gaming notebook with a 360-degree hinge.

Sometimes, a company will take one kind of notebook and equip it with components that create a crossover product that’s far less obvious. That’s the case with Lenovo’s Yoga 720 15, a convertible 2-in-1 that includes a legitimate entry-level gaming GPU and a high-power CPU.

When you hold these two machines side-by-side, you realize it’s not just semantics. In our Nitro 5 Spin vs. Lenovo Yoga 720 15 comparison, we determine just how successful a company can be in creating a gaming-2-in-1 mashup.

Acer Nitro 5 Spin

Lenovo Yoga 720 15

Dimensions 15.02 x 10.16 x 0.70 (in) 14.3 x 9.5 x 0.75 (in)
Weight 4.85 pounds 4.4 pounds
Keyboard Full-size backlit keyboard Full-size backlit keyboard
Processor Up to eighth-generation Intel Core i7-8550U Seventh-generation Intel Core i7-7700HQ
RAM Up to 8GB Up to 16GB
Graphics Intel UHD 620
Nvidia GeForce GTX 1050
Nvidia GeForce GTX 1050
Display 15.6-inch IPS Display 15.6-inch IPS Display
Resolution Full HD (1,920 x 1,080, 141 PPI) Full HD (1,920 x 1,080, 141 PPI)
4K UHD (3,840 x 2,160, 282 PPI)
Storage 256GB SATA SSD
1TB 5400 RPM HDD
Up to 1TB PCIe SSD
Networking 802.11ac, Bluetooth 4.1 802.11ac, Bluetooth 4.1
Connectivity USB-C 3.1, USB-A 3.0 (x2), HDMI, Ethernet, 3.5mm combo jack USB-A 3.0 (x2), USB-C 3.1, USB-C 3.1 with Thunderbolt 3, 3.5mm combo jack
Webcam 720p webcam 720p webcam
Operating System Windows 10 Windows 10
Battery 50 watt-hour 72 watt-hour
Price $1,000+ $1,100+
Availability Now Now
Review 6.0 out of 10 stars 7.0 out of 10 stars


Take one look at the Acer Nitro 5 Spin, and you’ll think “that’s a gaming notebook.” There’s the usual black chassis with brightly-colored trim — in this case red — and a keyboard with highlighted WASD keys made specifically for gamers. It’s not a garish design by any means, and most of the gaming notebook cues are relatively subdued, but you won’t mistake it for a conservative business notebook.

And yet, the 15.6-inch display swings all the way around into tablet mode. That’s of questionable value, though, because the Nitro 5 Spin has huge display bezels by contemporary standards and so it’s overly wide and a bit deep. It’s thin enough at 0.70 inches, but it’s also a relatively hefty 4.85 pounds. It’s solidly built, for sure, with an all-metal chassis, and give its overall girth it’s not particularly easy to carry around as a tablet.

The Lenovo Yoga 720 15 enjoys a much more conservative design, following along with the company’s deliberately subdued design aesthetic for the Yoga line in general. It’s attractive enough, but it clearly targets the more typical productivity user.

The Yoga 720 15 is also well-built with an all-metal chassis, but it pays a little more attention to how much space it takes up. It sports smaller display bezels, and so it’s overall dimensions are slightly smaller than the Acer, and in spite of being slightly thicker at 0.75 inches, it’s almost half a pound lighter at 4.4 pounds.

Which is the better looking convertible 2-in-1 comes down to whether you want your notebook to stand out in a crowd. Lenovo made the Yoga 720 15 slightly more comfortable as a tablet, though, and that counts for a little bit more.

Winner: Lenovo Yoga 720 15


The Nitro 5 Spin is equipped with eighth-generation quad-core Intel Core U 15-watt processors, which can go very fast when spun all the way up but that sip power when running lesser tasks. That’s something of a different approach than the Lenovo Yoga 720, which uses a 45-watt seventh-generation Intel Core i7-7700HQ CPU that runs fast and suck down power all the time. In our benchmarks, the Nitro 5 Spin is the faster performer in many tasks.

At the same time, both 2-in-1s use the same Nvidia GeForce GTX 1050 GPU, although the Acer uses the 4GB version compared to the Yoga 720 15’s 2GB version. And yet, the Nitro 5 Spin is not the better gaming notebook across the board. It barely beats out the Yoga 720 15 in Civilization VI at 1080p and medium graphics (falling behind with graphics set to ultra), but it was over 10 frames per second (FPS) slower in Battlefield 1.

Both 2-in-1s will provide similar productivity performance, but the Yoga 720 15 is just as good if not slightly better at gaming. It wins this category on principle alone.

Winner: Lenovo Yoga 720 15

Keyboard, Mouse, and Pen

As we mentioned earlier, open up the Nitro 5 Spin, and it’s obvious this is a gaming-oriented notebook. The keyboard is lined in red, with a single level of red backlighting, and the WASD keys are highlighted for gamers. The feel might appeal to them as well, with a snappy action that’s great for gaming. However, it also suffers from short travel and an abrupt bottoming action that’s less comfortable for long-term typing.

The Microsoft Precision touchpad is better, with a comfortable surface and solid gesture support. And, the optional $50 Acer active pen is a bit limited by modern standards with only 1,024 levels of pressure sensitivity and no tilt support.

The Yoga 720 15 fares a bit better in terms of typing information, with a typical Lenovo keyboard that offers a nice, springy mechanism that’s quiet and consistent and provides good feedback. Travel is a tiny bit short, but the bottoming action is comfortable. It’s a far better keyboard than the Acer’s for any user.

The touchpad was also competent, with Microsoft Precision touchpad support and an equally good feel as the Acer. The (also optional) $50 Lenovo active pen supported by the Yoga 720 is equivalent as well, with 1,024 levels of pressure sensitivity.

Ultimately, a good keyboard is vital in any notebook, and the Yoga 720 15’s is simply superior. It wins this round.

Winner: Lenovo Yoga 720 15


The Nitro 5 Spin makes good use of its large chassis when it comes to fitting in a bunch of connectivity. There’s a single USB-C 3.1 Gen 1 port (no Thunderbolt 3 support, alas), two USB-A 3.0 ports, a USB-A 2.0 port, a full-size HDMI port, and an Ethernet jack. Add in the usual 2×2 MU-MIMO 802.11ac Wi-Fi and Bluetooth radios and you’re mostly covered.

The Yoga 720 15 takes a slightly different approach. It has two USB-C ports, one with Thunderbolt 3 support, and two USB-A 3.0 ports. Toss in a 2×2 MU-MIMO 802.11ac Wi-Fi and Bluetooth, and that’s your entire connectivity suite.

We do like the Acer’s wide range of ports, which should leave nobody needing a dongle. But the Yoga 720 15’s Thunderbolt 3 port offers a lot more performance and more diverse display options. It’s a bit of a challenge picking a winner in this category, but ultimately we think Lenovo should be rewarded for including the most futuristic port of all.

Winner: Lenovo Yoga 720 15


We’ll keep this category short. Both the Nitro 5 Spin and Yoga 720 15 have equally sharp 15.6-inch Full HD displays (141 PPI). They’re both average for the price range and for the usual 2-in-1, meaning they’re very good displays by historical standards but can’t match the excellent panel on some more expensive machines.

By our objective tests, they’re fairly equal in terms of contrast, color gamut, and brightness. Where the Nitro 5 Spin falls down is in color accuracy and gamma, meaning the Yoga 720 15 is going to offer a more true-to-life image for videos and photos.

Also, the Yoga 720 15 can be purchased with a 4K UHD display, offering a significant upgrade in sharpness and overall quality. Along with the more lifelike colors, that’s enough to give the win to Lenovo, but that’s not to say you’ll be disappointed with the Acer. And compared to many gaming systems in the same price range, the Nitro 5 Spin has a much better display.

Winner: Lenovo Yoga 720 15

Portability and Battery Life

Gaming notebooks tend to offer limited battery life, which is a nice way of saying they’re usually terribly short-lived. Acer seems to have considered this fact in designing the Nitro 5 Spin, and not in a “let’s fix that” kind of way. It packed only 50 watt-hours of battery into the 2-in-1, which resulted in some decidedly mediocre battery life.

Compared to the Yoga 720 15, which enjoys a more reasonable 72 watt-hours of capacity, the Nitro 5 Spin doesn’t last as long on a charge. And that’s in spite of its using a more efficient eighth-generation Intel Core U processor compared to the full-speed processor in the Yoga 720 15.

The Acer beats out most gaming systems in terms of battery life, but that’s damning with faint praise. There should have been room for more battery inside that largish chassis, and unfortunately, Acer didn’t take advantage of it.

Winner: Lenovo Yoga 720 15

Availability and Price

The Nitro 5 Spin is moderately priced at $1,100 for a Core i7-8550U, 8GB of RAM, a 256GB SATA SSD, and a 1TB HDD. That’s just on the edge of premium territory for a 2-in-1 and slightly expensive for similarly-equipped gaming notebooks. You can save $100 by dropping to a Core i5-8250U CPU or losing the SSD, but you probably wouldn’t want to do so.

The Yoga 720 15 is similarly priced at $1,100 for a Core i7-7700HQ, 8GB of RAM, and a 256GB PCIe SSD. You don’t get the extra hard drive storage, but you do get a much faster SSD, and so there’s your tradeoff. You can spend up to $1,500 by bumping RAM up to 16GB, the storage up to 1TB, and opting for the 4K UHD display option.

We like options like higher resolution displays, and we’re happy with the extra performance offered by the Yoga 720’s faster SSD. For that reason, it wins this category as well.

Winner: Lenovo Yoga 720 15

The Yoga 720 15 is a better 2-in-1, and is just as good at gaming

Mark Coppock/Digital Trends

The Acer Nitro 5 Spin tries hard to be both a real gaming system and a legitimate convertible 2-in-1. In the end, it fails at being a great example of either, falling behind the Yoga 720 15 as both a productivity machine and an entry-level gaming notebook.

We, therefore, give a solid win to the Yoga 720 15. It manages to do what it promises better than does the Nitro 5 Spin, while also adding in another dimension that goes a bit above and beyond.

Editors' Recommendations

Mark Coppock
Mark has been a geek since MS-DOS gave way to Windows and the PalmPilot was a thing. He’s translated his love for…
Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Extreme Gen 3 vs. Dell XPS 15
The Dell XPS 15 on a table outside.

For working on a desk or on the go, it's hard to beat a 15-inch laptop. Although their 13-inch counterparts are often better for those moving around a lot, the extra size and screen real estate can make a difference if you do a lot of your work from a desk. And in 2021, there's one 15-inch machine that puts even the best laptops to shame: Dell's XPS 15.

The latest model is the result of years of refinement from Dell. Still, Lenovo's latest Gen 3 ThinkPad X1 Extreme provides some stiff competition, featuring similar internal specs and a beautiful OLED display option. Should you pick up the Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Extreme or Dell XPS 15? Let's find out.

Read more
Acer’s 5G Spin 7 is the world’s first laptop powered by the Snapdragon 8cx Gen 2
acer spin 7 qualcomm snapdragon 8cx gen 2 5g spin7 sp714 61 tablet mode with stylus

Following Qualcomm's announcement of the new Snapdragon 8cx 5G compute platform at IFA, Acer revealed that its new Spin 7 will be the world's first laptop to be powered by the ARM-based silicon. With a convertible form factor that allows the notebook's screen to fully rotate around on a 360-degree hinge, you can easily switch between laptop mode and tablet mode, and a Wacom AES 1.0 pen with 4,096 levels of pressure sensitivity will be useful for drawing and taking digital notes on the go.

In total, the package weighs just 3.09 pounds and is constructed using a magnesium-aluminum alloy chassis for a more premium feel. The Spin 7 comes with a 14-inch FHD display that's coated with the same antimicrobial Gorilla Glass found on Acer's other products. The laptop is just 0.63 inches thin, making it a portable option for business, travel, and school. Acer isn't giving specifics on battery life at this time, though the company stated that the Spin 7's battery is good for multiday usage.

Read more
Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Extreme vs. MacBook Pro 15
Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Extreme review

Whether it's for gaming, productivity, or viewing media, 15-inch laptops are some of our favorite laptops of all. They can be quite different from one another in design and platform, though. Taking a look at two of the top contenders in this class, we're pitted the Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Extreme against the MacBook Pro 15-inch to see which notebook comes out on top.

Note: The MacBook Pro 15 is no longer offered by Apple. The latest alternative is the MacBook Pro 16. You can find some of our coverage of the MacBook Pro 16 here:

Read more