01-10-2017 06:50 AM
Something I never would have seen coming 2 years ago is how serious Lenovo is taking the gaming market. Lenovo wasn't really known for making gaming laptops. They were more high-performance multimedia laptops.
One year ago, I knew something great was about to happen when Lenovo released the IdeaPad Y900 and beautifully designed gaming accessories of which I was happy to receive several samples.
The release of the IdeaPad Y900 was a significant milestone for Lenovo in the gaming world putting them right in the middle of the battle with brands like Razer, MSI, Alienware and many others. It is hard to say no to the Y900 with a dual fan design, a processor with an unlocked multiplier and a GTX 980M at a very attractive price. I couldn't believe my eyes, because I never expected them to make such a major move in the gaming market.
It's also worth mentioning that Lenovo's gaming accessories were one of the best I've owned in the past 5 years. Yes, they had a few problems, but the product team took the feedback seriously and improved all their products even further.
The Legion Y520 is an entry level gaming laptop meant for people on a lower budget.
Since we're talking about gaming laptops, we will start talking about the graphics card first, which is the Nvidia GeForce 1050 Ti in a 15" chassis that is 1,01" thick. This puts the Legion Y520 right against the Dell Inspiron 15 Gaming in the arena.
The Legion Y520 weighs 2.4 kgs and is thereby lighter than the Dell Inspiron 15 Gaming which weighs 2.6 kgs, or about ~0.4 lb more. I was very fortunate to hold both in my hands, and it would be safe to say that the Legion Y520 is of much higher quality.
The Legion Y520 can be configured with up to 16GB DDR4 RAM. Whether faster clocked memory is allowed at the moment we do not know. If you are interested in running faster memory, scroll down to the bottom of this article.
If you have lots of money to throw at the machine, make sure to take a look at the PCIe SSD options with NVMe support. However, for a quality budget gaming laptop, I would stick with the cheaper options, unless you really need the increased storage performance.
With the Legion Y520 being aimed at the entry level gaming market, it comes with an anti-glare Full HD IPS panel and up to 4 hours of battery life. There are no 4K options available, as the GTX 1050 Ti is not fast enough to benefit.
There is also a USB-C port for those that are interested in for example using an external graphics dock.
The Legion Y720 is Lenovo's higher-end gaming laptop, and comes with a Nvidia GeForce GTX 1060 6GB GDDR5 (PCIe). The mobile version of the GTX 1060 offers the same amount of shaders as its desktop version, but uses lower clock rates.
Benchmarks for the Nvidia GeForce GTX 1060 can be found here. It appears that the graphics card is able to run nearly all titles on ultra settings using a Full HD display resolution. Titles like Battlefield 1 and Rainbow Six Siege are playable on a 4K display resolution between 40-50 FPS.
The Legion Y720 can be equipped with up to 16GB DDR4 memory at 2133MHz. As you can see in the picture below, the RAM is hidden under a metal cover. This either protects the RAM from excessive heat or it acts as a shield.
In order to be able to dissipate the heat, the Legion Y720 also comes with better cooling, bringing the total weight at 7,05 lb or 3,2 kg.
There is also a Thunderbolt 3 port which can be used to hookup external graphics docking stations. Although this is not officially supported.
The Y710 Cube still comes with a Skylake desktop processor. Considered the lack of improvements on Intel's end for the desktop processors, it isn't that bad. Although, the Cube now comes with a AMD RX 460 8GB or Nvidia GeForce GTX 1080. The AMD RX 460 is about half the size of the GeForce GTX 1080. The GeForce GTX 1080 is able to play any game at 4K.
If you take a look at the screenshot below, you can see that, the Cube can easily be upgraded with an aftermarket graphics card of your choice if you need more power after several years.
The air flow appears to be decent and is seperate for both the processor and graphics card. The only improvement I can think of right now, is cable management.
Lenovo Y Gaming Headset (Gen 2)
The first generation of the Y Gaming Headset had several issues. The worst one for me personally was the fact that you were required to plug in the USB cable if you wanted to make use of the volume buttons and the microphone mute button. In addition to that, it would hurt the top of your head because the cushion/pillow was too thin. Aside from these minor issues, the first generation Y Gaming headset offered everything you could wish for and outperformed its competition by great lengths. The audio quality and build quality were ashtonishing, and that hasn't changed.
As with the previous generation of the Y Gaming headset, we see the braided cables. The fake leather for the ear pieces has been replaced with an actual cloth material. I personally like this change as fake leather may make your ears sweat and feel warm after longer use. The cloth has gives me a refreshing feeling.
The product team allowed us to use the gaming headset at CES, and the demonstration with Dolby Atmos was simply amazing. For your information: I own several gaming headsets by SteelSeries and Turtle Beach, and nothing comes close to Lenovo's Y Gaming headsets.
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