At a glanceExpert’s Rating
ProsImpressive heavy duty performanceBright and crisp OLED displayHigh-resolution webcamConsNot the best battery lifeColour control could be improvedOur Verdict
Acer has broken the mould by combining a powerful processor with an ultra-thin design with the Swift Go 14. The OLED display is also impressive, but the colour control on it could be improved.
Most 13- and 14in laptops focus on mobility, with simpler processors built for low-power performance to improve the battery life. This also allows cooling to be kept to a minimum and batteries to be smaller, resulting in thinner and lighter computers.
Acer was once best in class at keeping weight down, with some of the lightest models on the market with its Swift series. However, the Swift Go 14 combines a manageable weight with heavy-duty performance.
The laptop is thicker and more angularly designed than most competitors, and as such it can accommodate much beefier hardware with the Intel Core i7-13700H processor. The H series has more high-performance cores, higher power consumption and higher heat generation.
You usually see this type of processor in powerful gaming computers or laptops for demanding creative work, and they are often accompanied by an equally powerful graphics card such as the Nvidia Geforce RTX or AMD Radeon RX. You don’t get that here, so you have to make do with the processor’s built-in Intel Iris Xe graphics.
My review unit has 16GB of DDR5 memory, and 1TB SSD. However, US readers can only get 512GB of storage.
…the Swift Go 14 combines a manageable weight with heavy-duty performance
Build quality and performance
The chassis is made of a lightweight metal and the casing is made of thin, light plastic. Acer has kept the weight below 1.3kg, which is typically what we would consider the limit for ultralight PCs. Getting such powerful processing in a lightweight computer like this is quite unusual – I can edit 4K videos effortlessly, and export them with just a moderate strain on the device.
This is made even easier by the computer’s excellent display, which comes with a 16:10 aspect ratio and 2,880 x 1,800 pixels, resulting in sharp visuals. It is an OLED panel, which means high colour intensity and excellent contrast with 100% deep blacks.
The display is very glossy, which may result in some reflections if you work outdoors. I wouldn’t recommend this, as the screen is not bright enough. At most, I get about 400 cd/m2 in spot brightness.
Indoors, it’s more than enough. The screen is certified for Vesa’s True Black 500 HDR, and watching a film in a dark room is a great experience. This is largely thanks to the wide colour gamut of the OLED panel, well above the DCI-P3 standard colour palette.
The display is very glossy, which may result in some reflections if you work outdoors
What’s missing is a calibrated mode that controls the screen and provides colour matching to P3 and/or sRGB, as well as the option in the settings to switch between them. It feels like something Acer should invest in, as this is too good of a display to ignore.
The keyboard has a simple layout with clear backlighting, but there is a a low stroke height and soft response in the keys themselves which make it feel on the budget side.
Cameras, audio and battery life
The speakers on the Swift Go 14 provide clean and clear stereo sound, and with DTS audio enhancement enabled you get extra richness in the mid-range and bass. However, this comes at the expense of overall sound quality.
For music, it sounds best if I switch it off and then turn the volume up – it can be pushed all the way to max without being too loud. There’s more of a decent soundstage for voice reproduction, so video meetings sound good.
This audio is complimented by the 1440p webcam, which comes with with good colour and lighting automation. The computer’s microphone comes with an effective noise filter, helping muffle any unwanted distractions.
If you want to sound even better, you can connect a headset or desktop microphone via USB – this PC comes with a better range of USB ports than a lot of rivals.
Due to its high-performance processor, the Swift Go 14 can be quite loud. Fans kick in early and make a lot of noise. But they’re also efficient, with hot air escaping through the back grille, and as such neither the base nor keyboard get uncomfortably hot.
At full power the battery life is not great – it can be drained in just over an hour. But if I keep the processor load to a minimum and am careful with the brightness of the OLED screen, I can surf and email for a whole working day.
Price and verdict
Priced at $1049.99 (available directly from Acer in the US), you get a lot of value for your money with the Swift Go 14. It combines powerful performance with a high-quality display, generous storage and a good range of ports.
The Acer Swift Go 14 is also an affordable PC alternative to the MacBook Air. You can work just as effectively and creatively on it, and it’s several steps ahead in computing power. No other company has dared to put a processor focused on performance in such a small form factor.
However, cooling and energy efficiency may still weigh in favour of the MacBook and some other PC competitors – you can see how rivals compare in our list of the best laptops. Sadly, this exact model is currently not available in the UK.
This review was translated and localised by Hannah Cowton for Tech Advisor. The original article was written by Mattias Inghe for PC för Alla – you can read his review of the Swift Go 14 here.
Product name: Acer Swift Go 14 SFG14-71Tested: May 2023Manufacturer: AcerProcessor: Intel Core i7-13700H, 6 pcs Performance up to 5 GHz + 8 pcs Efficient up to 3.7 GHzGraphics: Intel Iris XeMemory: 16GB LPDDR5Storage: 1TB SSD, space for Micro-SDDisplay: 14in OLED, 2880×1800 pixelsWebcam: 1440pConnections: 2 x USB-A, 2 x USB-C, HDMI, headphone jackWireless: Wifi 6e, Bluetooth 5.1Operating system: Windows 11 HomeOther: Fingerprint readerNoise level: 0-37 dBaBattery life: 1 hr and 20 min (high load, full brightness), approx. 12 hr and 20 min (low load, low brightness)Size: 31.3 x 21.8 x 1.5 cmWeight: 1.25 kgPrice: $1049.99 at Acer US (exact model not available in the UK)
Cinebench R23, CPU: 13,876 pointsCinebench R23, CPU and Core: 1,885 pointsGeekbench 6, CPU: 11,931 pointsGeekbench 6, CPU and Core: 2,501 pointsGeekbench 6, Graphics: 17,105 pointsDisk, Read: 3,607.7 MB/sDisk, Write: 3,472.17 MB/s