One of the beefier laptops coming from a certain Chinese computer giant is Lenovo Z70. It’s a high-end notebook consisting of a powerful Intel processor, one terabyte hard drive and some sort of dedicated graphics engine. In this review, we’ll concentrate on the 80FG00DCUS model with Core i7 processor and 1TB hybrid hard drive & 16GB RAM setup.
Lenovo Z70 (80FG00DCUS) is equipped with Intel Core i7-5500U, a 5th generation dual-core processor of 2.4GHz clock frequency and 3.0GHz turbo. But one thing you should remember: even though it’s i7, it’s not a desktop i7 but a low-voltage mobile unit. It won’t use a lot of energy or heat up, but in exchange won’t offer nearly as good performance as those i7s without such energy restrictions (like the famous i7-4720HQ) do. This can be verified from benchmark tests, the i7-5500U receiving around 4000 points in CPU Mark while the said i7-4720HQ gets over 8000. This i7-5500U is still a very strong processor, just don’t expect it to behave like its ridiculously powerful desktop brothers.
So it’s 16GB DDR3L SDRAM you’ll get for memory. Two 8GB sticks are the configuration, and that’s the maximum this laptop supports. Storage drive is a so-called hybrid drive, sporting the main 1TB hard drive section and then a smaller, system-controlled SSD cache of 8GB. By “system-controlled” I mean the computer will decide what files are stored on the SSD part, user has no say in that. Related to this, the whole unit will appear as one drive in Windows.
Is it good for players?
I can imagine many people gaming on Lenovo Z70 (80FG00DCUS). It contains GeForce 840M, a low-end dedicated graphics card good enough to keep a casual player happy. For example, all the games before 2014 before are smooth if you don’t use maximum settings. The case with newer and more requiring games isn’t that bad either, for example using normal settings and 1366×768 you should get +40FPS on games like GTA 5.
Lenovo Z70 (80FG00DCUS) is not a compact laptop, it features a 17.3″ screen. Resolution is 1920×1080, the only right choice for power users. With this kind of setup, you can put two windows (like browsers) next to each other. It would be tough to see that if the display was physically smaller, but because of the 17 inches size, you’ll have no problems with side by side windows. It doesn’t seem to be a touchscreen, but don’t worry, Windows 10 doesn’t require one.
Looking at the sides, quite usual set of connections will greet a person about to connect devices. The laptop sports in total three USB ports, but sadly only one of those is USB 3.0 – more could’ve been expected for this price. Video outputs are HDMI and VGA, hence you can plug in a HDTV or new/old PC monitor if you wish.
There’s also a full Gigabit RJ-45 port for network cable, and if you want to go wireless, you can use the excellent 802.11 ac-standard WiFi + Bluetooth 4.0 card. DVD burner is available on the right hand side in case you can’t download all the required programs off Internet but need to use discs. There’s also a possibility to upload data from memory cards using the laptop’s built-in SD/MMC card slot.
A webcam is installed as well, it seems to support 720p video resolution.
Other important things
It’s not travelers and “on the go” people that would benefit from Lenovo Z70 (80FG00DCUS). It weighs a good 6.6 pounds, compare that to ultrabooks of 2-3 pounds. Its 41Wh 4-cell battery isn’t too strong a unit either, three-four hours operating time is what you’ll get.
There’s Windows 10 Home (64-bit) pre-loaded on the laptop. The keys are not backlit, that’s quite a surprise considering it’s not a budget model.
Summing it up
Reading the comments from users who bought this computer, I can see most people were very happy with their laptop. Indeed, Lenovo Z70 (80FG00DCUS) seems to offer a lot for the money: a solid frame, great general performance and beautiful Full HD display. There’s also gaming potential thanks to dedicated graphics, just don’t expect every game to run with high details and you’re good to go. If I was to complain about something, it would be minor things like a single USB 3.0 port and missing backlit keyboard feature. But I don’t think those shortcomings matter that much; all in all this Lenovo is a well-rounded machine for power users and professionals alike.