Lenovo G50 (80L0000QUS) Review

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March 16, 2015
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Lenovo G50 (80L0000QUS) is a new affordable laptop with decents specifications like a Core i3 processor, 15.6 inches screen and Windows 8.1 as the operating system. Such laptops are dime in a dozen, so is there anything that makes this one stand out from the crowd? Perhaps, we’ll find that out below…

Performance

Name of the processor in Lenovo G50 (80L0000QUS) is Intel Core i3-4030U. It’s an older 4th generation CPU – Intel has started to roll out 5th gen processors in early 2015 – but the i3-4030U model should still have strong performance for most users. There are two cores in it and the clock speed is 1.9GHz, with CPU Mark tests grading the processor around 2700 points (a similar 5th generation Intel gets ~2900 points). As it is, all Core i3 models from 2014 onwards are good for everyday computing, including some heavier use on occasional basis.

The laptop comes with 4GB DDR3L memory. The amount of memory slots on mainboard is two, so you can add an additional 4GB chip if it’s RAM boost you’re after. The maximum supported memory is 16GB in this model. Remember to use low-voltage memory if you’re upgrading the RAM.

Storage drive is a spacious 1024GB one, bigger than the usual 500 or 750 GB drives often found in models of similar price. If we assume a photo size of 5MB, you could in theory store 200,000 vacation snapshots and other images on that drive. A lot indeed – but the downside of a conventional hard drive is a slow speed. This can attribute to sluggish user experience in comparison to solid-state drives. Of course, swapping the hard drive for an SSD is possible with this laptop.

Graphics and screen

A 15.6″ non-touch display with 1366×768 is present in Lenovo G50 (80L0000QUS). That’s a cookie cutter display, good enough for most uses, although it doesn’t do excellent job for any. Especially the resolution might frighten Full HD zealots. While this is understandable, I wouldn’t personally mind the 1366×768 on a 15 inches screen.

There’s a graphics chip called Intel HD 4400 in the Core i3 processor. It performs better than the well-known HD 4000 model, although can in no way be compared to true dedicated cards. Keeping details and resolution low in many later games is the only way to survive: for example, Battlefield 4 should give decent 25FPS with eye candy turned off. Older titles, such as Minecraft and Fifas will run with much higher frames than that.

Connections

There are three USB ports in Lenovo G50 (80L0000QUS), the same amount than virtually every laptop of similar price has. One port is USB 3.0 and I recommend preferring that for fast transfer speeds. Unusual for Lenovo, the laptop also features VGA output in addition to HDMI out, meaning there’s a good support for external monitors.

To get Internet access you can use the 10/100Mbps RJ-45 port or the solid 802.11 AC WiFi card. Bluetooth 4.0 is also supported out of the box.

The laptop has a DVD writer, a feature many notebooks of today are lacking. Also an SD/MMC media card reader is installed, good if you have a digital camera or other similar gadget whose data you must transfer to the computer.

A 0.3MP webcam is available for video chats on Skype.

What other things to keep in mind?

Lenovo G50 (80L0000QUS) seems to weight 5.5 pounds which is perhaps bit high compared to most models (~5 pounds). It’s not a deal breaker for portability, although the 4-cell battery with just around 3 hours running time doesn’t really help that.

There are a lot of good things said on the ad copy about the keyboard, but still no mention about backlight feature. A numeric keypad on the right is however included.

Summing it up

Lenovo G50 (80L0000QUS) is a typical modern laptop with strong enough performance for casual users wanting to surf the web, watch videos on YouTube and perhaps play some games (but only on low settings). The notebook doesn’t really differ from its competitors a lot, perhaps the hard drive is bigger on this model than usually. As Lenovo is a very trusted brand I can as well recommend this notebook for your daily computing needs.


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