A lot of the laptops that we review on Hardware.Info aren't the cheapest of products. The one we're looking at today is an exception in that regard, the Acer Aspire V5-431P-987B4G50Mass is available for just under 500 euros.
That this is an entry-level laptop isn't immediately obvious when you look at it. It's also part of a product line that has much more expensive notebooks, and aside from a lack of a few stickers and backlighting for the keyboard, it doesn't look so different. It's a bit more compact than your average laptop, due to the 14-inch TN screen with a resolution of 1366x768 pixels. It's interesting that it is a touchscreen, which is pretty special at this price point. It even has 10 touchpoints.
The Acer Aspire V5-431P-987B4G50Mass is relatively sleek, but they were still able to fit a DVD burner inside of it. There are three USB ports, one of which is USB 3.0, and an HDMI port. The laptop has a special connector for the special adapter that Acer included, which lets you connect the computer to a VGA screen and ethernet. It's pretty heavy, weighing in at 2.1 kg.
The keyboard on the Aspire V5 types fine, even if the cursor keys are on the small side. The touchpad is relatively large, which is nice for Windows 8. It doesn't have any physical buttons, however. But in combination with the touchscreen it's a pleasant way to interact with Windows 8.
The rest of the specifications of this affordable laptop are also not bad. You get 4 GB of RAM with an open slot so you can upgrade, and 500 GB of storage courtesy of a 5400rpm Western Digital hard disk. If you want to replace it with an SSD, it will take some effort as you have to remove the entire bottom cover. You can read the rest of Acer Aspire V5-431P preview on Hardware.info.