If you want a laptop and tablet, you don’t necessarily have to buy two separate devices anymore. Because humans are smart, they’ve found a way to put both devices into one physical unit. Lenovo Flex 3 (80JM001NUS) is such a computer, sporting a 360 degrees flipping touchscreen that turns the laptop to a tablet in two shakes of a lamb’s tail. Let’s see if such a gadget would be money well spent…
You might have heard about 5th generation processors. They’re the latest Intel CPUs, supposed to bring better performance than the previous models. In this system, the processor is called Intel Core i5-5200U. It indeed belongs to the 5th generation, offering a dual-core configuration, 2.2GHz clock speed and 2.7GHz turbo. It’s ~10 percent faster than the older i5-4200U model, and in general these i5 processors are suitable for heavier use. Programs like Photoshop or virtual machines run alright, and everyday applications are piece of cake for it.
Lenovo Flex 3 (80JM001NUS) comes with one 8GB DDR3L RAM (1600 MHz) chip installed. It is plenty for a convertible laptop. That being said, you can’t put in more, eight gigabytes is the maximum this computer supports. I believe 99% of users will be fine with the 8GB anyway.
The storage is a 1TB 5400RPM hard drive. It’s big but much slower than an SSD. So if you want the true solid-state drive performance, you must take the hybrid drive out and install SSD (2.5 inch, 7mm, SATA III) in place yourself.
Display and graphics
Lenovo Flex 3 (80JM001NUS) has a 15.6″ display with 1366×768 resolution. Aspect ratio is the standard 16:9 and touch is supported. The screen flips 360 degrees, hence the name convertible laptop. If I were to point out the obvious, the 1366×768 resolution might not satisfy everybody. There are Full HD models of this notebook too, but you’d have to pay a bit more or settle for a smaller hard drive and screen (see Style section under Amazon product page for more information).
Too bad for gamers, there is no proper graphics card in this computer. It relies on the integrated Intel HD 5500 which can run a variety of games fine, but not with very high settings and resolution. For example, on the native 1366×768 resolution and medium settings, Battlefield 4 will get closer to 30FPS. Grand Theft Auto 4 would get almost the same. Luckily many older but still popular titles, such as Minecraft and Counter-Strike: Go, will work better than that.
Lenovo Flex 3 (80JM001NUS) has three USB ports in total. Two of those are USB 3.0 and one is USB 2.0. Also HDMI output is included, meaning an HDTV or PC monitor can be connected to the laptop.
Networking options are sufficient, you can use the Gigabit Ethernet port or 802.11ac WiFi. Bluetooth 4.0 is supported as well.
The notebook has no optical drive, you must use an external one if you need that. However, you can also download files from Internet, or use the laptop’s built SD card reader for memory cards.
There’s a front-facing 720p webcam fixed in the unit. It can be used for Skype video.
Any other things to keep in mind?
Lenovo Flex 3 (80JM001NUS) weighs 5.1 pounds, just about the average of these 15-inch models. Thickness is 0.9 inches. The 3-cell 45Wh battery is good for no more than four hours with a single charge.
The keyboard seems to be backlit and it has a 10-key pad on the right hand side.
Lenovo Flex 3 (80JM001NUS) has a good performance for 2-in-1 device. It sports a latest 5th generation processor, ensuring most programs will run without issues. The flipping touchscreen is a smart move, although 1366×768 resolution might not be enough for everybody. Also, even though the unit works as a tablet, it still has the size and weight of a laptop. But if you can live with that fact, most likely this Lenovo will be a decent choice for you. There are no other downsides I can think of, and the price-performance/feature ratio seems to be good.