Lenovo Ideapad 520S Review TechRanger.net

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“Is the 14 inch lenovo ideapad 520s a sleek mid range windows laptop that aims aims nto satisfy very large demographic whilst its not the cheapest laptop around nin some its various configurations. It still has features that can satisfy more demanding nusers so lets get straight into it and take a closer nlook at the 14 inch lenovo ideapad 520s starting with the exterior as a brand lenovo s build and design of ntheir laptops is something of a mixed bag some of their laptops like their gaming. Y nseries whilst aesthetically really good their build quality is generally not great their higher end yoga laptops are usually nrelatively well built. But my experience with lenovo s build and ndesign philosophy is one of form following function and this somewhat holds true with the 520s first of all the 520s has an aluminium unibody nbuild.

The monitor housing and the palm rest assembly nare really well built full aluminium unibody in a sort of space grey colour or as lenovo ncall. It mineral grey. Very little flex which is quite impressive. But the base of the laptop.

However is a fairly nsturdy plastic cover the 520s also has these polished edges to ngive. It more of a premium look and feel personally. I m not a massive fan of this nkind of design element on any device. But it is good to a bit more attention to detail so.

The 520s has quite an impressive build nbut the quality of the design does feel very utilitarian on the dimensions side of things. The ideapad. N520s. Is 327 cm.

Across. 237 cm deep and. 193cm thick coming in at around 17kg. These are respectable dimensions and weight nfigures for a notebook of this size and class.

But at the same time nothing spectacular part of the small footprint is down to the nvery narrow bezels on the 520s display which measure in at just 7mm. It s a very good balance between screen nsize and portability 13 inch screens. Never really feel big enough for longer periods of productivity. Nand 15 inch laptops start becoming.

Unwieldy so looking at the physical features we of ncourse have the 140. Inch fhd ips display here in an anti glare finish on top of which we have a 720p camera with nmicrophones either side moving our way down. We have the keyboard in nthe signature lenovo key shapes not a fan of the grey keys. Personally i would nprefer plain white or black keys in front of the keyboard.

We have a generously nsized track pad and the fingerprint reader to the right on the left side going from back to front nthe power hdmi a usb. 30 port usb c port and a 35mm headphone jack on the right we have a kensington lock a nusb 20. Port an sd card reader and a lenovo restore button and finally on the bottom we have 3 rubber nfeet grilles for the fans and the speaker grilles on either side for the harman speakers. Nwith dolby audio more about them later now moving onto the internals before we even begin there are a ridiculous nnumber of configurations of the 520s with different cpu choices.

Gpu and storage configurations. The availability of these configurations also nvary by market on the unit. We got from lenovo we have a 7th ngeneration dual core intel core i7 7500u lenovo also offer core i3 and i5 configurations on our unit performance was snappy in most ncases browsing the web productivity streaming nvideos the 520s in this configuration was completely smooth..


But when you have lots going on dozens of ntabs open downloading games a video streaming in the foreground. The 520s neven with the i7 did experience some stuttering once in a while this takes us quite neatly onto ram. As far as i can tell the 520s is only available nwith 8gb of ddr4 running at a quite impressive 2133 mhz. This is probably what caused slowdown.

I experienced nwhen doing quite alot of multitasking whilst having so many programs running and nso. Many tabs open is rare everyone will do something similar at some point therefore having a 16 gb ram. Option would have been welcome for the 520s. But this just isn t the case the 520s also comes with the option to add na discrete graphics card the nvidia 940mx our review unit doesn t and comes with intel nhd 620 integrated graphics graphical performance on the integrated graphics nis passable and will satisfy the needs of most users for slightly more intensive usage.

Simple ngames like minecraft ran. Very comfortably with a moderate render. Distance and full graphics nquality more demanding titles like battlefield. 4.

Will nrun at around 20 fps or less even at the lowest graphical settings making it very unpleasant. I was going to do a demo of battlefield. 1 nneedless to say it wasn t necessary when i ran battlefield 1 even on the lowest ngraphical settings on the 520s the intel hd 620 barely pushed out 7 fps but again for integrated graphics this is to be expected the addition of the nvidia 940mx will improve ngeneral graphical performance somewhat for more demanding tasks like photoshop and nlight video editing. The 940mx will improve performance noticeably for light gaming minecraft will run even nsmoother at higher render distances moderately demanding titles like battlefield 4 will run nsignificantly better and should even achieve 30 or so fps even on medium graphical settings n.

Just about playable. But still not pleasant newer titles. Like battlefield. 1 whilst.

Improved. Nshould. Just be able to push out around 15 20. Fps at the lowest graphical settings.

Still nunplayable. If you do plan on using this laptop for anything nother than just simply browsing the web and some basic productivity on word powerpoint nand the occasional bit of minecraft. I would definitely recommend if possible getting the nnvidia geforce 940mx gpu option so any sort of graphical work either professionally nor for university. Like photoshop or anything.

Graphically related. That is moderately demanding ndefinitely. Consider the discrete gpu option doing so could save a lot of time and frustration. So in general performance on the i7 unit.

Nwe tested is ok for most light and moderate users the performance nthe 520s provides should satisfy most of your needs and provide a couple years of future nproofing the performance of the 520s does lend itself. Nquite well to the needs of most university students as long as graphical design and performance nintensive tasks aren t a part of your course for more demanding and professional users ni would recommend look elsewhere especially laptops with quad core. Cpus and or having nthe option of more than 8gb of ram..


The 520s even at the top end of the configurations. Nisn t a high performance laptop being limited a dual core processor. And 8gb nof. Ram.

Does not lend the 520s to great performance under more demanding usage conditions nperformance isn t one of the 520s redeeming. Features in fact. Most competing. 14 inch.

Laptops. Nin. The 500 800 price. Bracket have around the same specs.

As the 520s. Whether performance is important to you or nnot. It may be worth looking at 13. And 15 inch laptops.

As well as they have a lot more nvariety when it comes to performance storage. Wise. The 520s is only available in two nstorage configurations 128 and 256. Gb.

These are pcie ssd drives. And they run seriously. Nquickly. Start up is basically instant and the speedy ndrive does make general usage.

Quite snappy. Although larger drive options would ve been nappreciated with regards to fan noise during normal use nthe fans do run and you will hear it it isn t very loud. But if you don t have nsomething playing in the background. You will notice it again this is to be expected from a laptop nof this class and size moving onto the display as mentioned before nwe have a 14 inch ips led display running at a resolution of 1920×1080.

Its an ok display its not very bright. But nshould work fine under most lighting conditions. However you will start to struggle to see nthings comfortably in strong sunlight colour wise for the general use it fine colour accuracy is not great whites have na slight yellow hue being an ips display viewing angles are quite good being an fhd display you can t expect too nmuch. But the pixel density is high enough to give the average user a comfortable viewing nexperience.

The thin bezels definitely do add to viewing ncontent on this display with less distraction. But also looks very nice and clean in general this is an alright display along nthe lines of what one would expect from a laptop from this price. Bracket and class for the general user..


This is a very pleasant ndisplay to use but for those coming from either more colour accurate or 2k or 4k displays. Nor people who need colour accuracy for their use this display just doesn t cut. It now the speakers. The 520s has the aforementioned nstereo harman speakers with dolby audio the sound quality of the speakers on the 520s nis.

Quite impressive good treble great clarity and definitely nhas a lot of body and depth to it. However. The speakers. Don t seem to like nbass.

Very much and whenever bassy music is played there is just slight distortion towards nthe lower frequencies than actual bass. But despite this the speakers on the 520s nare. Quite impressive and certainly do sell the 520s as a media consumption laptop not extraordinary but definitely commendable looking at the keyboard and trackpad the keyboard is a typical lenovo keyboard nwith their signature key shape. I found this keyboard to be really nice to ntype on it has a good amount of key travel and a nice and responsive tactile feedback.

I would ve liked the key travel to have nbeen a tiny bit shorter. But overall. It is a pleasant and efficient typing experience nand. I would have no problem writing a great deal off this keyboard like i said before i would have npreferred if they keys were white with grey typeface or black with a white typeface.

But that is just my opinion. The backlighting on this keyboard has two nbrightness settings. And it does a good job of illuminating. The keys in the dark just nthe right brightness and a really even backlight coverage.

Personally the keyboard is one of the highlights on nthis laptop. For me. The trackpad is quite generous and has a very nnice texture to it 95 of the time. It is very comfortable and neffortless to use.

But like my previous experiences with lenovos trackpads. Because i prefer to nuse the physical click feature rather than the tap lenovo s trackpads and asus to some extent tend nto jump. Occasionally multitouch gestures are recognised. Most of nthe time.

And quite accurately too. The actual click is slightly on the firm side nfor my preference. But for most people coming from other windows laptops. They will be quite nused to it the fingerprint reader to the right of the ntrackpad is a really neat feature that many lenovo laptops have had for a very long time nthis fingerprint reader works a treat and unlocks the laptop through windows hello.

Very accurate very fast nothing to complain nabout here finally looking at battery life battery life on the 520s is a mixed bag. We find that doing just passive activities nlike streaming 1080p youtube videos on a medium brightness. The 520s lasted around 9 hours nwhich is respectable..


However when you start doing more active things nlike browsing the web working on powerpoint word battery life started to suffer at around n3 6 hours depending on how much multi tasking you were doing so battery life isn t amazing. But if you nmanage it well the 520s can just about get you through a working day. But i would still nbring the charger just in case. So who is it for if you are a student or someone who is looking nfor.

A general purpose laptop for browsing the web some productivity or media consumption nwatching youtube streaming netflix etc this can be a great laptop for you the 14 inch display with the thin bezels ngive. The 520s. A smaller footprint as well as a more accommodating and comfortable display nsize its relatively light as well and easy to carry around with you with the pcie drives this laptop should be nsnappy and provide a really good user experience for light to moderate use the battery life is good enough that if you nmanage it properly it should just about last. A full day.

And it has a good typing experience nand lets not forget the pretty good. Speakers. The 520s is definitely not for demanding or nheavy. Users.

Graphic design. Video editing heavy multi tasking. The hardware. Just isn t designed for that nkind of use if you want something for high performance look at the likes of the razer blade.

14. Other laptops around the realms of 1000. Nor. Over if you are the most basic computer user who nwill only browse simple webpages check.

Emails write a document every now and then this nprobably will not represent great value for money look along the lines of 200 400 like the nhp stream. 14. And the like this is essentially a basic everyday laptop nbut with an improved experience through the addition of some more high end bits and bobs nand. That is what you are paying that little bit extra for there are also plenty of competing products nfrom hp asus.

Samsung and plenty of other pc makers out there but the 520s is a pretty good pick. But ultimately down to personal npreference. Thanks for watching our review of the 14 inch. Nlenovo ideapad 520s.

Don t forget to give this video a thumbs up and subscribe for more nof. The latest tech. ” ..


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