Acer and their Predator series laptops are always one of the go to brands if and when you’re ready to step up your gaming laptop. I’ve always been a fan of the Predator series and I still am which is why Acer always makes sure they give me something super cool to check out when they update the Predator series.
What am I reviewing this time? It’s the new 2022 version of the Acer Predator Triton 300 SE OLED edition. I spent almost a month with this great gaming laptop and in my time with this laptop. I’ve come to the conclusion that it’s one of the better gaming laptops that take advantage of 1080p that I’ve used this year even though it’s not intended to be a 1080p gaming laptop. Don’t get it twisted. It’s a good thing.
DESIGN & PORTS
The overall look, feel and design of the Acer Predator Triton 300 SE is sleek, clean and pretty as always with the Predator lineup. The Triton 300 SE looks and feels very premium once you take it out of the box and lift the lid. The version that I received for the sake of the review has a deep smoke gray colorway and it compliments the look of keyboard and that OLED display (We’ll get into that later in this review)
As one can expect with a gaming laptop you’re going to get USB ports and HDMI access. Nothing new under the sun here. You have two standard USB 3.0 ports, one USB Type-C port and an HDMI port. Sorry, no ethernet port. Would’ve been nice but this isn’t the first gaming laptop to omit it for the sake of aesthetics. There are always tradeoffs and you can get an adapter for it if necessary.
Keyboard touch feels very nice and tactile but not clicky, keyboard noise is minimal and keyboard travel is very good and I personally never got the sense that I didn’t know where the keys were. The keyboard on the Triton 300 SE gave me great response when I was typing and the keys were spaced out well so that way I minimized typos. Some may find the keyboard a little squishy and that’s fine but for me in my everyday use of this laptop the keyboard worked very well.
This is a gaming laptop so of course the keyboard has 3 zone RGB lighting that’s customizable for color scheme and theme and keyboard buttons are also programmable with the custom Predator Sense software. Gaming is where I might say this keyboard needs a little more of a mechanical feel but again, not a dealbreaker.
The keyboard is a pretty good but for me I’ve never too critical of laptop keyboards unless they’re really bad and I have to speak on it. This isn’t the case here. This keyboard is more than sufficient and does the job it should.
THAT OLED DISPLAY IS GORGEOUS
Hands down the best part of the Triton 300 SE is it’s absolutely gorgeous display. It would be easy for me to overexaggerate how good this screen looks for the sake of a review but no, this display is seriously pretty and any game you play on it will look incredible.
It’s a 2880 x 1800 resolution WQXGA OLED display and on this small form factor and a 14.1″ screen you get to really see what that resolution looks like with OLED as opposed to LCD. The blacks are rich and deep. The color gamut is expansive with room to play with color palettes of your choosing.
Refresh rate on this display is just 90Hz which is a bit of a downer. Typically you’ll see a refresh rate of 120Hz at a minimum on most gaming laptops. Acer went with 90Hz as the choice here but it’s not a dealbreaker. Unless you’re playing a really graphically complex game you won’t notice any issues.
The widescreen 16:10 format is a plus that I found with this laptop because of the games that I play which are primarily driving and FPS games like Forza Horizon 5 and Destiny 2. Those games are very complex and involving and having that slight bit of extra screen real estate is very helpful.
PREDATOR SENSE SOFTWARE
Acer’s Predator Sense software is a staple of having a Predator series laptop and it has always worked very well with any laptop. Customization in terms of how you ideally want the GPU and CPU to work together during daily tasks and gaming is what this software is all about. You can also use it to personalize the RGB, setup hotkeys, game sync, and have the software also work in conjunction with some of the apps that you use granted Predator Sense supports it.
Fan control, overclocking and custom gamer profiles are also a major part of the Predator Sense experience. Predator Sense is MUCH improved as the it’s been much more optimized to the current day machines that Acer is making.
Battery life on a gaming laptop is always a contentious topic because in most cases the more power for gaming the worse the battery life and you’re essentially relegated to using your adapter which kind of defeats the purpose of having a laptop.
Fortunately, the Acer Predator Triton 300 SE does a very good job of handling battery life. In my use, I averaged 6.5 to 7 hours which is of course determined by the game(s) I was playing. It isn’t a guaranteed number. Productivity tasks like just browsing and working and watching the occasional video or stream showed off just how good the battery was optimized for this laptop as I did get an extra hour or so. Either way, I found battery life to be just above average for a battery that isn’t very big in this machine at just about 78W. Still, very solid.
As with any gaming PC, heat is the enemy in every way. Acer uses a thermal cooling system that designed with heat dissipation in mind. For starters, Acer stepped away from the traditional thermal paste to which we are all accustomed to in our PC’s and instead opted for liquid metal which is a first on their newer machines. Acer is also using dedicated heat pipes for the CPU and GPU combined with a dual fan system that does a very good job of keeping this laptop relatively cool and giving the CPU and GPU more room to better perform.
While heat is something that you can never actually defeat, Acer put forth a good effort in this regard as I found myself playing for hours on end without this machine getting dangerously hot and thus triggering my anxiety about a crash.
IMPRESSIVE POWER FOR THE ACER PREDATOR TRITON 300 SE
Power is not at all an issue for the Predator Triton 300 SE. This laptop is quite the powerhouse on the spec sheet and having this used this laptop for over two weeks. No game was too much for this machine and coupled with the right Predator Sense settings you can really experience that i9-12900H in all it’s glory. The spec sheet below should tell you exactly what to expect if you’re in the market for one of these laptops.
MSRP – $1,949.99
DISPLAY – 14-inch 2.8K WQXGA+ (2880 X 1800) OLED, 16:10 aspect ratio
VESA DisplayHDR 500 True Black certified 400-nits, 90Hz refresh, 1ms response time, DCI-P3 100%, sRGB 100%
PROCESSOR – Intel® Core™ i9-12900H up to 5.0GHz, 14 cores, 20 threads, 24MB Intel Smart Cache
GRAPHICS – Overclockable NVIDIA® GeForce RTXTM 3060 Laptop GPU with 6GB of dedicated GDDR6 VRAM, Maximum Graphics Power: 95W, Boost Clock: 1382MHz
Max-Q technologies: NVIDIA® Dynamic Boost 2.0, NVIDIA® DLSS, NVIDIA® GPU Boost™, NVIDIA® Resizable BAR
MEMORY – 32GB LPDDR5 Onboard Memory (32GB max)
STORAGE – 1TB PCIe Gen4x4 SSD
COMMUNICATIONS – Killer™ Wireless Wi-Fi 6E AX 1675, Dual-stream (2.4 GHz, 5GHz and 6GHz bands), 2×2 MU-MIMO technology, Bluetooth 5.2
PORTS – Thunderbolt 4: USB Type-C port USB 3.2 Gen 2 (up to 10Gbps) DisplayPort
over USB Type-C & USB charging, USB 3.2 Gen 2 port (featuring power-off charging), USB 3.2 Gen 2 port, HDMI 2.1 port with HDCP support, headphone/speaker line-out jack, DC-in jack for AC adapter, Kensington lock slow
1080p GAMING IS WHERE THE PREDATOR TRITON 300 SE ROCKS
With a native resolution of 2880 x 1800 on that small 14″ screen, the Predator Triton 300 SE makes games look beautiful because of that gorgeous OLED screen but if you didn’t know, with more resolution comes more GPU and CPU resources required. This laptop handles its native resolution well but for me being a PC gamer and a framerate over resolution gamer, that’s exactly where I found myself and in my game tests for this laptop, 1080p is where this laptop will give you its absolute best performance.
The Predator Triton 300 SE can support 1440p with ease and any game at its native resolution. Where the Triton 300 SE falters just a little bit is with the 3060 GPU that I had in my review unit. Although it didn’t give a problem in the sense of crashes and random weird occurences. Hitting 60 fps or higher at native resolution was quite taxing and in some of the more complex games like Gears and Cyberpunk 2077. To be fair, that was to be expected because even on more powerful machines that can be an issue.
All things considered, my gaming experience was very good, I had no real complaints. I tend to not be too analytical in my approach to gaming laptops and how they perform unless they’re super expensive or super cheap. The Predator Triton 300 SE is more of a mid-tier gaming laptop that gives you what you need and not much more.
THE PREDATOR TRITON 300 SE IS A GREAT PICKUP
The Acer Predator series never fails and it’s because of Acer’s attention to build quality and quality components all with giving you the best gaming experience in mind. With the Predator Triton 300 SE, it’s about small form and portability without a major tradeoff in power. You get that with this machine.
Gaming on this machine is a breeze. Of course, just like any gaming PC this is subjective. It all depends on what you play and how you intend to play it. My personal suggestion if you’re in the market for this gaming laptop is to play on 1080p. While you might be thinking you’ll lose a lot by doing so, let me assure you, you won’t. The OLED screen on the Triton 300 SE is gorgeous and I played practically every game I own in 1080p and I really didn’t notice that I was playing in 1080p visually, the difference was in the game play being much better. Yes, this laptop can perform at higher resolution and that 3060 does a good job but I just found the performance a bit underwhelming at higher resolution even with an overclock.
At just about $2000 this laptop isn’t cheap but it is affordable relatively speaking. It’s futureproof for quite a few years and most of the games you buy. I’m sure you can probably find a comparable brand that makes a similar laptop but of course that decision is yours. As for my experience, the Predator Triton 300 SE is a visually pleasing gaming laptop to carry around and again that OLED is something special and gaming is fun on this machine. It’s a worthy pickup that won’t leave you feeling cheated or as if you need or want more. It does the job and does it well. If you have an interest in this laptop you can pick one up direct from Acer right HERE.