. First lets cover the differences in specs between the two units. Im testing with., The ones Im using are very similar. Theyve got the same: Intel i7, 9750H CPU Nvidia, GTX, 1660, Ti graphics and 16GB of memory in dual channel.. Both have 512gb M.2 NVMe SSDs and a 15.6 1080p screen with 60Hz refresh rate, though 144Hz is also an option. For network connectivity. Theyve both got gigabit, ethernet, 802.11ac WiFi and Bluetooth 5.. Both laptops are available with different specs, though you can find examples and updated prices linked in the description.. Both have black plastic lids. The Nitro 5 is smooth with a textured triangle pattern on the sides, while the Y540 has a grooved textured finish. Both have a subtle logo. However, the O on the Y540 lights up, but you can turn this off.. The interior of the Nitro 5 is more of the same matte black plastic, with plenty of red accenting that screams gaming laptop. While the Y540 has a much cleaner and more professional design, however, it seems to be coated in some sort of rubberised material. In terms of weight. They were extremely close. The Y540 was just 12 grams, more so no real, difference. Things change with the power bricks, though. The Y540 brick is significantly larger, making the overall package almost 300g more.. As for size, differences, theyre, very close same thickness. The Y540 is deeper, while the Nitro 5 is a little longer. As for screen differences, both of my laptops had 1080p 60Hz IPS panels so expect different results with the 144Hz options that most people are likely to buy for gaming.

. With these panels, the Nitro 5 had slightly higher colour gamut. It was also brighter at every level of brightness, and it had a better contrast. Ratio., It was the same deal when it came to backlight bleed. The Nitro 5 was a bit better when compared with the Y540. However, this will vary between panels, but out of these two units, the Nitro 5 is the winner. With regards to the screens.. Neither laptop has G Sync. However, the Y540 does give us the option of enabling or disabling hybrid mode through the Lenovo Vantage software, which is their control. Panel., Enabling hybrid mode will give us better battery life with Nvidia Optimus, as this will use the Intel graphics outside of gaming, while disabling hybrid mode will give us better performance in games by bypassing Optimus, but at the expense of worse battery life outside of gaming.. It just takes a reboot to swap between the two modes.. The Nitro 5 does not have this option. It will always be using Optimus.. Both had similar levels of screen flex, perhaps a little more with the Nitro 5, but they both seemed sturdy enough.. The screen on the Y540 also goes all the way back if thats important to you., Although both have thin screen bezels, the Nitro 5 was able to keep its camera up the top of the panel while the Y540 has it down the bottom below the screen.. This is what the camera and audio look and sound like on the Acer Nitro 5, and this is what things looks and sound like on the Lenovo Y540 Ive got to put that screen back, so we can get the lovely nose cam.

. The keyboards were fairly similar. The Nitro 5 has red keys, even with the lighting off and the Y540 has white lettering and the backlighting matches this so white lighting for the Y540 and red for the Nitro 5.. The backlighting fully illuminates all keys and secondary functions on both laptops.. The brightness levels of both can be adjusted with keyboard shortcuts or turned off completely. The Nitro 5 has 4 levels of brightness, and the Y540 has two levels.. The Nitro 5 has a more gamer look to it with accented WASD and arrow keys.. Its also got a shorter right shift, key, which I know some people cant deal with. Otherwise I quite liked typing on both heres, how they sound to give you an idea of what to expect.. I personally prefer the cleaner look of the Y540, but in terms of typing Ive got to hand it to the Nitro 5. The key presses just felt more tactile.. The power button for the Nitro 5 is above the numpad in the keyboard and the Y540 has it placed above the keyboard in the center, which I prefer far less chance of an accidental press. Although you could set this to do nothing in Windows, anyway. Both touch pads use, precision, drivers were smooth to the touch and worked well.. The one on the Nitro 5 clicks down anywhere, while the Y540s does not as it instead has dedicated, left and right click buttons, which make slightly louder clicks.

. I liked that the touchpad on the Nitro 5 was larger. However, in the end, I personally liked using the one in the Y540 more., Both laptops had similar levels of flex while pushing down hard. The Y540 had more in the actual keyboard area and the Nitro 5 had more just below it, though. I never found this to be a problem during normal every day, use with either.. Both machines show up fingerprints quite easily, and although they both have smooth surfaces, they were easier to clean off the Nitro 5, as the Y540 has that rubberised texture., The IO is quite a bit different, at least in terms of layout. On the left. The Y540 just has a USB 3.1 Gen1 Type, A port and 3.5mm audio jack, while the Nitro 5 has Kensington, lock, gigabit ethernet, HDMI, 2.0 output, USB 3.1 Gen1 Type C port. No thunderbolt, though, and two USB 3.1 Gen1 Type, A ports. On the right. The Y540 is keeping things simple again with just a second USB: 3.1 Gen1 Type, A port while the Nitro 5 has a 3.5mm audio, combo jack, USB 2.0 Type, A port status, LEDs and power input. On the back. The Nitro 5 just has air exhaust vents, while the Y540 also has the rest of its IO. From left to right. Its got a USB Type C port, again no Thunderbolt here either mini DisplayPort 1.4. Third, USB 3.1 Gen1 Type, A port HDMI, 2.0 output, gigabit ethernet power input and kensington lock.

. The Y540 also has icons above all of the ports, so you can easily see where you need to plug a cable in when standing over it from the front, without the need to turn the machine. Around. Theres nothing on the front of either machine. For those not keeping track. The Y540 has better IO options. The key differences are that, although both have three USB Type, A ports, one of the Nitro 5s is USB 2.0, while the Y540 is all 3.1 Gen1.. The Y540 also has a mini DisplayPort 1.4 output, which the Nitro 5 doesnt have at all. Otherwise, the Y540 also has everything else the Nitro 5 is offering, but with the bonus of keeping bulky cables out, the back and out of the way. Ill also note that the head of the charger on the Nitro 5 does slightly obstruct the side air exhaust vent, Though I didnt find this to do anything when testing thermals., Underneath both have air intake vents towards the back of the machine and the design of the Y540 looks a bit cleaner.. We can also see the speakers here both are towards the front left and right corners. Actually, on the front for the Y540 and towards the sides on the Nitro 5., I found the speakers in the Nitro 5 to sound better. They were just less tinny sounding in comparison. At max volume, with music playing. I found the Nitro 5 a little louder, and the latencymon results with the Nitro 5 were also a little better.

However, both seemed to pass the test. Speaking of the BIOS heres, a super quick run through of each of them. Both are quite basic and locked down with not really many advanced options available to the user.. The bottom panels can be removed by taking out 11 Phillips head screws. For storage. Both have a 2.5 inch drive bay, but the Y540 is limited to one M.2 slot. For storage, while the Nitro 5 has two., Both machines have two memory slots. Dont worry I tested both with the same Teamgroup kit in dual channel for all testing.. Otherwise, the WiFi card is also accessible here and theyve also got different cooling designs.. The batteries are similar in size. The Nitro 5 has a 4 cell 58wh battery, and the Y540 has a 3 cell 57wh battery. Ive tested both machines with the screen at 50 brightness background apps, disabled and keyboard lighting off. Outside of gaming. The Y540 was lasting 13 longer than the Nitro 5 and we can see how the battery drains quicker on the Nvidia graphics, with hybrid mode disabled. In terms of gaming. The Y540 technically lasted longer, however, Im only showing the times here where the game was still playable at 25 charge left on the Y540 game. Fps dropped to unplayable levels. Now lets take a look at thermals.. Both laptops were tested in an ambient room temperature of 21 degrees Celsius under the same workloads. By default out of the box. Neither of these machines has any undervolting or overclocks applied theyre, just straight stock for these tests.

. I have also tested with both CPUs undervolted. The Nitro 5 had a slightly lower undervolt, as I couldnt get it to match, and I tested the Y540 a few weeks. Prior. The Nitro 5 provides better fan control. You can customize each fan, while the Y540, on the other hand, has no fan control at all.. The Y540 does have different performance modes, quiet, balanced and performance. However, in my review I found the fans would max out all the same under stress test, regardless of the mode I used. So for this reason I am only showing best case results in performance mode.. These are the CPU temperatures of both machines, while under combined CPU and GPU loads, well check the GPU results later so for now just keep in mind. These are CPU results, but for combined loads., These stress test results are from running Aida64 and the Heaven benchmark at the same time, to fully load the system.. As the Y540 cannot change, fan speed, I tested it in performance mode both for the default and max fan. Result so theres not actually a change there, but I wanted to show the difference. This makes to the Nitro 5 and this is why the Nitro 5 sees an improvement with the fans at max speed., The undervolt improved, both by a single degree. Then the cooling pad made a larger difference to the Y540.. These are the CPU clock speeds for those temperatures we just saw., Despite the Nitro 5 having a cooler CPU, the Y540 is actually performing better and scoring higher clock speeds, which would explain some of the additional heat.

With the Nitro 5 at default fan speed. It was actually thermal throttling at 92 degrees, while the Y540 wasnt thermally throttling, as it has a higher limit.. This is why setting fan speed to maximum raises the nitro 5 clock speed.. Once both are undervolted, the Y540 is able to hit its 4GHz all core turbo boost speed under this combined CPU and GPU stress test an impressive result that not many machines Ive tested can achieve, while the Nitro 5 is a little behind. Now lets take a look At the GPU results for these same tests, so just to clarify, were still looking at the results while under combined CPU and GPU stress tests.. This time the Y540 was cooler on the GPU.. With the fan at default automatic speed, the Nitro 5 was thermal throttling on the GPU. However, boosting fan speed removed this. Again, the cooling pad also appears to make a bigger improvement with the Y540, probably as it has bigger air vents underneath.. These are the GPU clock speeds in these same tests and, like the CPU results, the Y540 was ahead in terms of clock speed. This could, in part, be due to the cooler temperatures, as this is preferable for GPU boost to operate.. Things get interesting when we look at CPU only load here at the results of Cinebench R20, with both machines at stock and while undervolted. The Y540 was significantly ahead. In this test, in fact, once undervolted, this is one of the best scores Ive ever seen from a laptop with i7 9750H CPU.

. This was because, while under a CPU only load, the Nitro 5 has a 45 watt TDP limit on the CPU, while the Y540 allows. This to run up to 60 watts.. This means that, when, under a CPU, only workload without the GPU being utilized, the Y540 has a nice advantage, especially as I couldnt manually modify. These limits. Ive also tested the blender benchmark, which basically smashes the CPU with load, and the Nitro 5 is taking over 30 longer to complete the same amount of work, showing that the difference can add up quite a bit over time. Ive also used Handbrake to convert A 4k video file to 1080p and a separate 1080p file to 720p and again, the Y540 is performing faster in this multicore CPU workload due to the higher CPU power limit.. As for the areas where youll actually be putting your hands at idle, the Y540 was noticeably warmer. Heres. What were looking at with both under stress test and Ive got the Nitro 5 with the fans at the default auto and max speeds, while the Y540 has no fan speed options and well hear next theres, quite a difference in fan speeds. At idle. The Y540 was completely silent, while the Nitro 5 was just audible, so that likely explains why the Y540 was a little warmer to the touch.. With the stress tests running, the Nitro 5 was a little quieter with its fans on auto speed. However, as we saw before it was thermally, throttled on both the CPU and GPU and losing performance.

Once the fans are at max speed, the Nitro 5 is now quite a bit louder than the Y540. However, the Nitro 5 does give you the option of customizing. The fan speed, so you could tweak this to find a sweet spot. Overall there arent too many differences in terms of thermals. However, the Nitro 5 does offer better fan control.. This does mean it can run louder, but you do have more control over it.. In terms of raw clock speed, the Y540 was coming out ahead, both in terms of CPU and GPU performance during these tests.. Although the previous generation Y530 did allow you to manually set the fan speed to maximum. This is not currently an option with the newer Y540.. Next let's compare some games., As both laptops were tested at different times. Different Nvidia drivers were in use, the Nitro 5 was tested with one version newer. However, the changelog did not specify performance improvements for any of the games. Ive tested. Ive also tested both in their best available out of the box performance modes, so for that Nitro 5 thats just with max fan speed, while the Y540 had performance mode enabled and hybrid mode, disabled., Disabling hybrid mode requires a reboot, but this means the Nvidia Graphics is connected directly to the screen, which can boost game performance compared to using Optimus in some titles, which is what the Nitro 5 is always using as it has no such option. Battlefield, 5 was tested in campaign mode and the exact same part of the game Was tested with each machine.

, The average frame rate was essentially the same though the Y540 was seeing higher 1 low performance. Battlefield 1 flips this around a bit with the Nitro 5, now scoring 4.5 higher average FPS than the Y540. However, 1 low results are much more similar, no major difference, realistically. Apex Legends was tested at max settings and the Nitro 5 was just slightly ahead with a 4 lead to average FPS. Shadow of the Tomb Raider was tested with the built in benchmark and the Nitro 5 was 4.5 higher in terms of average FPS. Assassins. Creed Odyssey was also tested with the built in benchmark, and this was a clear win for the Nitro 5.. Although the average frame rates dont look too different, the Nitro 5 was just under 6 ahead. In terms of average FPS, but a much larger 22 boost to 1 low. Fortnite was tested using the replay feature and in this game both machines were scoring almost exactly the same. Same result for 1 low and the Nitro 5 was just 0.5 ahead. In average, FPS margin of error, stuff. PUBG was also tested using the replay feature and again saw a similar result in terms of average FPS, where the frame rates were essentially the same. However, the Nitro 5 was seeing a 7.5 improvement to 1 low.. Dota 2 was tested playing in the middle lane., While the Y540 was winning here in terms of average FPS. The Nitro 5 had a much larger 48 boost to 1 low, which is probably going to matter more considering both already have high average frame.

Rates. CSGO was tested with the Ulletical FPS benchmark, and this is a game that I typically see favour machines that allow you to disable Optimus.. I believe this is the main reason that the Y540 was seeing better performance in this title. Coming out, 16 ahead of the Nitro 5. Overwatch was tested in the practice range and the Nitro 5 was just 4.5 higher in terms of average FPS. However, it had a much larger 30 improvement to 1 low., Far Cry New Dawn was tested with the built in benchmark in this test. The Y540 was a little ahead in average FPS, but was 21 better for 1 low. Far Cry 5 was also tested with the built in benchmark and the results were very close together. However, there was a slight edge to the Y540. Watch. Dogs 2 is another game. Thats heavy on the CPU, though, despite the superior CPU clock speeds we saw in the thermal testing. The Nitro 5 was far ahead in this game, where the 1 low wasnt too far behind the Y540s average. Ghost Recon Wildlands, was tested with the built in benchmark and was another win for the Nitro 5, which was almost 5 faster in terms of average FPS. Metro Exodus was also tested with the built in benchmark, and the results were extremely close between the two, though technically. The Nitro 5 was just a touch ahead, though its margin of error range., The Witcher 3, had similar average FPS on both laptops with a minimal edge to the Y540.

However, the Nitro 5 was offering a much better 1 low result. Rainbow. Six Siege was tested with the built in benchmark and the Nitro 5 was just 2 ahead in terms of average FPS with a little more lead in 1, low. DOOM was tested with Vulkan, and both games were extremely close together with the Y540 slightly ahead. In average, FPS. Strange brigade was also tested with Vulkan, using the built in benchmark and again, the Y540 was just a little ahead.. On average over these 19 games tested. The Acer Nitro 5 was only 1.1 ahead of the Lenovo Y540 in terms of average frame rate. At max settings., If we remove the Watch Dogs 2 result, then the average difference between the two is almost nothing. But, as you can see, it really varies by game.. Realistically, in almost all cases, the frame rates were close enough that I doubt youll be seeing a practical difference. So while the Nitro 5 does have a slight edge, I wouldnt let this factor alone decide which to get. Ive, also got the overall scores for the 3DMark Fire Strike and Time Spy benchmarks. And again the results are extremely close between the two with one ahead. For one test and the other ahead in the other. Ive tested storage with Crystal disk mark., Both of my machines came with a 512gb NVMe M.2 SSD. However, specific storage options will likely vary by region. With the particular disks. In my machines, though, the Y540 was faster.

. Its worth, noting that both machines also have a 2.5 inch drive bay for installing additional storage. However, the Nitro 5 also has the advantage of a second M.2 slot. The Y540 only has space for one. For updated pricing check. The links in the description as prices will change over time. At the time of recording. I havent been able to find the Nitro 5 with these specs for sale in the US. However, the Y540 is around 1270 USD. Here in Australia. The Nitro 5, with these specs is 2000 AUD or 200 less than the Helios 300. While I bought my Y540 for 1570 AUD on sale. For my US friends without taxes and converting the currency that puts my Y540 at 970 USD and the Nitro 5 at 1230. Clearly, making the Y540 a better deal well, at least here in Australia.. The Nitro 5 would probably be cheaper in the US. Im. Making this assumption, based on the fact that the Helios 300, which is superior to the Nitro 5, is cheaper than the Y540 with same specs.. With all of that information in mind. Lets summarise the good and the bad aspects of each laptop and find out, which is worth it.. The Acer Nitro 5 clearly has more of a gamer looking design aesthetic. Personally, I prefer the cleaner professional design of the Y540, but thats always going to come down to personal taste.. The Y540 has the mux switch a nice advantage that I wish all laptops had, as this gives the user the choice of running the machine with Optimus for improved battery life or rebooting to swap to the Nvidia graphics only for improved gaming performance.

. Despite this, though, with the same specs as weve seen, the Nitro 5 was ahead in the majority of games. However, once we average out the results, its a very narrow lead., While it will depend on the specific game in use overall, there isnt really enough of a major difference, one way or the other in games to pick based on that alone.. The Nitro 5 had a slightly better screen compared to the Y540, at least when comparing the 60Hz variant of each machine expect different results with 144Hz panels. When actually looking at both side by side. At max brightness, though, I couldnt really notice a difference. In terms of build quality, I had a hard time picking one over the other theyre, both plastic. However, something about the Y540 just felt a little better to me.. It does, however, have that rubberised texture to it and Im not sure how that would hold up long term. In terms of size both were about the same thickness. The Nitro 5 was a little wider. However, the Y540 was deeper. The size, differences, werent, really noticeable side by side. Id, say theyre, both equally portable. Well, until you add the power bricks., Both laptops are almost the same weight. However, once you include the power bricks, the total package of the Y540 is 300g more due to its massive power brick.. Both machines get decent battery life for gaming laptops, though so maybe you wont need the charger that often.

Outside of gaming, the Y540 lasted 13 longer than the Nitro 5. However, while gaming on battery power, not only did the Nitro 5 last longer, but it was able to keep the frame rate higher for the whole test. So if you plan on actually playing games on battery power, the Nitro does better. In terms of upgradeability. The Nitro 5 has the option of two M.2 drives in addition to the single 2.5 inch drive bay, while the Y540 only has space for a single M.2 drive, but does also have the 2.5 drive spot. In terms of thermals. The Nitro 5 was thermal throttling on both the CPU and GPU with the fans at the default speed. However, we do have the option of customizing them and setting them to maximum speed which removed this.. The Y540 didnt have any thermal throttling. However, it unfortunately lacks the option to customize fan speed, which, in my opinion, is a huge downfall compared to other modern machines. Hopefully they add it in a BIOS update as its predecessor had this option.. The Nitro 5 was cooler on the CPU as a result of the higher fan speed, while the Y540 was cooler on the GPU. When, under the same stress test, the Y540 was clocking higher. But despite this, as we saw in games there wasnt much difference between the two., The Nitro 5 was limited by its 45 watt CPU TDP outside of gaming, though, as we saw in Cinebench blender and handbrake, the Y540 was able to utilize its higher 60 watt limit, Meaning that in CPU workloads where the GPU isnt in use the Y540 should perform better.

. I preferred that the majority of the IO on the Y540 was out the back and out of the way, and it did also have slightly better IO, with an additional mini DisplayPort and no USB 2.0, like the Nitro 5. Objectively. The Nitro 5 is winning more of these tests than its losing. However, realistically there arent really any wildly major differences between the two, so its going to come down to what your personal needs are and price difference. Subjectively Im. Personally, all in on the Y540, the gamery design of the Nitro 5, just isnt for me, plus the Y540 – is around 400 AUD cheaper here with same specs.. If the price is similar in your region with the same specs and you dont mind the more gamery. Look, the Nitro 5 appears to be the better option in most cases., So which of these two gaming laptops. Would you pick the Lenovo Y540 or Acer Nitro 5? Let me know which, and why down in the comments Im really interested to see, which you prefer and if youre new to the channel consider getting subscribed for future comparisons and tech.