Comparison Lenovo Slim Pro 9i 14 vs Acer Swift X 14 | ENBLE

Comparison Lenovo Slim Pro 9i 14 vs Acer Swift X 14 | ENBLE

Lenovo Slim Pro 9i 14 vs Acer Swift X 14: The Battle of the Creator Laptops

Lenovo Slim Pro 9i 14 Image credit: Mark Coppock / ENBLE

Creators have been in the spotlight recently, with a surge of laptops designed to meet their specific needs for performance and display quality. Among the top contenders in this category are the Lenovo Slim Pro 9i 14 and Acer Swift X 14. These machines combine power and portability to deliver the ultimate experience for creators. But when it comes down to it, which one should you choose?

We want to make your decision easier by providing you with an in-depth comparison of these two laptops. We have extensively tested both models, dissecting their specs, design, performance, display, and more. So, let’s dive in and discover which of these creator laptops takes the crown.

Specs and Configurations

When it comes to configurations, Lenovo offers a single option for the Slim Pro 9i 14, which is the model we reviewed. Priced at $1,900, it features a Core i7-13705H CPU, 32GB of RAM, a 1TB SSD, an Nvidia GeForce RTX 4050 GPU, and a stunning 3K Mini-LED display.

On the other hand, the Acer Swift X 14 comes in two versions. The entry-level model, priced at $1,050, sports a Core i5-13500H, 16GB of RAM, a 512GB SSD, and an RTX 3050 GPU. For $1,500, you can upgrade to the higher-end model, which offers a Core i7-13700H, 16GB of RAM, a 1TB SSD, an RTX 4050, and a gorgeous 2.8K OLED display.

While the Slim Pro 9i 14 boasts more RAM, it may not be worth the extra $400 for most creators. The Acer Swift X 14 provides excellent performance at a more affordable price point, making it a better choice for those on a budget.

Design

Acer Swift X 14 Image credit: Mark Coppock/Digital Trends / ENBLE

Both laptops feature sleek and stylish designs, but they have some notable differences. The Slim Pro 9i 14 boasts an elegant look with rounded corners borrowed from the Slim 9i series. Its reverse notch display adds an extra touch of attractiveness and comfort. In comparison, the Swift X 14 has a more simplistic design that may not turn heads but remains practical and suitable for everyday use.

In terms of build quality, the Slim Pro 9i 14 takes the lead. Its aluminum construction feels solid with no bending, flexing, or twisting. The Swift X 14 holds up reasonably well but doesn’t match the Lenovo’s sturdiness. Both laptops have hinges that open easily with one hand, which is a bonus.

One noticeable difference is the Slim Pro 9i 14’s chunkier dimensions, measuring 0.85 inches thick and weighing 3.7 pounds, compared to the Swift X 14’s slimmer profile—0.70 inches thick and 3.42 pounds. If portability is a priority, the Acer laptop offers a more lightweight and compact option.

In terms of connectivity, the Slim Pro 9i 14 wins with an extra Thunderbolt 4 port and a full-size SD card reader, while the Swift X 14 only has a microSD card reader. Both laptops offer equivalent wireless connectivity options.

The Slim Pro 9i 14 also has a higher resolution 5MP webcam, compared to the 1080p version in the Acer Swift X 14. Both cameras provide excellent image quality for videoconferencing. Additionally, the Slim Pro 9i 14 features an infrared camera for Windows 11 Hello facial recognition, while the Swift X 14 relies on a fingerprint reader. Both methods offer reliable and secure login options.

Performance

Lenovo Slim Pro 9i 14 Performance Image credit: Mark Coppock / ENBLE

When it comes to performance, both laptops come equipped with similar processors. The Slim Pro 9i 14 features a slightly variant 45-watt 13th-gen Core i7-13700H/13705H CPU, offering 14 cores (six Performance and eight Efficient) and 20 threads. Our CPU-intensive benchmarks revealed that the Slim Pro 9i 14 performed slightly better in terms of single-core performance. However, both laptops use the same Nvidia GeForce RTX 4050 GPU, an entry-level model that can significantly boost certain creative tasks.

In the Pugetbench Premiere Pro benchmark, which tests both GPU and CPU performance, the two laptops performed almost identically in normal mode. However, when tested in performance mode, the Slim Pro 9i 14 showcased much faster speeds, even competing with laptops sporting faster GPUs. For heavy-duty creative work, the Slim Pro 9i 14 will provide creators with a noticeable edge.

It’s important to note that productivity users will likely not notice any performance difference between these two laptops. However, creators dealing with resource-intensive tasks will appreciate the Slim Pro 9i 14’s higher speeds when pushed to the max. Additionally, the Slim Pro 9i 14 outperforms the Swift X 14 in 1080p gaming, delivering approximately 20 frames per second higher in Fortnite at 1200p with epic graphics.

Display and Audio

Acer Swift X 14 Display Image credit: Mark Coppock / ENBLE

The display technology used by each laptop sets them apart. The Slim Pro 9i 14 features a mini-LED display, while the Swift X 14 opts for an OLED panel. These two technologies offer distinct advantages, with mini-LED providing higher brightness and potentially better HDR support, and OLED delivering wider and more accurate colors. Both display types can deliver deep contrast.

However, Windows 11 limits the Slim Pro 9i 14’s mini-LED potential, particularly with regards to contrast in standard dynamic range (SDR) mode. While the Slim Pro 9i 14 offers better contrast than standard IPS displays, it falls short of the depth provided by OLED technology. To achieve inky blacks on the Slim Pro 9i 14, users must switch to HDR mode, which reduces brightness and sacrifices color width and accuracy.

On the other hand, the Swift X 14 offers a more pleasing display experience by default, excelling in all aspects except brightness. With an OLED display, it is a better choice for creators seeking accurate and vibrant visuals. The Slim Pro 9i 14, however, caters to media consumers who desire enhanced HDR capabilities.

Regarding audio, the Slim Pro 9i 14 takes the lead with its quad-speaker setup—two upward-firing and two downward-firing speakers. It delivers clearer and louder sound compared to the Swift X 14’s dual upward-firing speakers. However, both laptops fall short of competing with Apple’s MacBook lineup, known for providing the best audio experience in the laptop market.

Portability

Lenovo Slim Pro 9i 14 Image credit: Mark Coppock / ENBLE

In terms of portability, the Slim Pro 9i 14 is slightly bulkier and heavier than the Swift X 14. It measures 0.85 inches thick and weighs 3.7 pounds, whereas the Swift X 14 boasts a slimmer profile at 0.70 inches thick and weighs 3.42 pounds. Both laptops remain reasonably portable, but those seeking a more compact and lightweight option might lean towards the Acer.

Battery life is an area where both laptops fall short, performing below average in our battery tests. While the Swift X 14 exhibited slightly worse battery life overall, both machines will likely require a midday charge.

The Verdict: Acer Swift X 14 Offers Cost Savings

In conclusion, the Slim Pro 9i 14 is undoubtedly a well-designed and powerful laptop. However, its disappointing battery life and underwhelming performance of the mini-LED display hold it back. On the other hand, the Acer Swift X 14 offers comparable performance, equally poor battery life, and a superior OLED display for creators.

Considering the $400 price difference, we believe the cost savings provided by the Acer Swift X 14 make it the better choice for most users. Both laptops deliver excellent performance and portability compared to larger 16-inch models, but the Slim Pro 9i 14’s additional features may not justify the extra investment.

So, if you’re looking for a creator laptop that balances performance, display quality, and affordability, the Acer Swift X 14 is the way to go. Embrace your creativity and embark on your digital journey with a laptop that won’t break the bank.