Should you want to buy a fancy laptop here’s an idea for you: LG gram 14Z950. It’s an ultra lightweight 14″ model with great performance, consisting of Core i7 processor, a full-blown SSD and professional-proof 8GB RAM. Operating system is naturally Windows 10 and the screen sports a Full HD resolution. Very, very, sweet, but the price tag won’t make you happy… So let’s see if this unit can be called a valuable one!
How’s the performance?
It’s Core i7 processor you find under the hood of LG gram 14Z950, and do you know what i7 means? The fastest processor line of Intel’s. The model in this laptop, the Core i7-5500U, features a dual-core setup, 2.4GHz clock speed and 3.0GHz turbo. Not bad, although you might find the CPU Mark grade of ~4000 a bit low for i7. Well, that’s because this i7 is a mobile version and ultra-low voltage unit; it won’t use too much electricity and it should stay calm. And such a score is not bad for a laptop, I don’t think you could make this system lag with pretty much any software there currently exists.
The above assumption of strong performance is further reinforced after checking out the storage section. It’s a SATA3-connected 256GB solid-state drive, responsible for firing up your programs (and the system itself) quickly. True, there are no M.2 slots available as far as I know, but if you’re not happy with the current drive you’ll be able to replace it.
Memory amount is 8GB, installed on one DDR3L 1600MHz stick. That would be the maximum RAM too, you’re not able to go beyond 8GB here.
Comments about the display
It’s a high quality screen in LG gram 14Z950, I’m sure about that. The 14″ diagonal display features 1080p resolution and IPS panel (viewing angles should be great). Reading people’s comments, they also seemed to like this model, even for graphic design which I can easily believe. A word of warning though, don’t try to touch it, the screen won’t respond.
Is it good for gaming?
LG gram 14Z950 is not a real gaming machine. There’s no graphics card with dedicated memory bringing smooth frames to many new games. True, you’re able to play some titles here, but not really using maxed out settings and the native resolution of 1920×1080. For example, the integrated graphics engine Intel HD 5500 would run GTA 5 at acceptable ~25FPS using medium settings and 720p. On the other hand, playing League of Legends, high settings and 1080p would be guaranteed.
Connections and ports
You can plug in two USB devices at a time, LG gram 14Z950 sports two USB 3.0 ports. A standard HDMI output is also there, you could connect a HDTV to that if you’re not happy with the laptop’s compact screen. RJ-45 port (100Mbps) and SD(XC) card reader are also available.
Wireless networking is handled by a dual-band 2×2 A/C type WiFi card. Bluetooth 4.0 is supported too. The thin screen bezel has 1.3M front-facing webcam embedded, feel free to shoot videos or use it for Skype meetings if you want.
Surely this small laptop must have something missing? Well, yes, there is no optical drive. You can’t access DVDs unless you get an external optical drive. Luckily, they are also small and most importantly cheap, costing around 30 bucks.
Other important things
One of the selling points with LG gram 14Z950 is the ultra low weight and small physical dimensions. This unit weighs only 2.2 pounds, in addition the maximum thickness is 0.5 inches. The screen is also damn thin – this kind of package looks professional to me, and you’ll have no problems carrying the laptop with you.
One thing to keep in mind is the battery, it seems to hold two cells and 35Whr rating. These are not great specs, although you’ll still reach ~6 hours under web surfing. Still, compared to other similar lightweight laptops that’s not so good, some of then receive more than 10 hours.
Operating system is Windows 10 Home. This model is unfortunately not equipped with a backlit keyboard.
A premium price must be paid if you want LG gram 14Z950. But the strong points (which are very strong!) are many. To begin with, the compact size with beautiful design: this kind of thing rocks for travelers and on-the-go people. Also performance is great, as somebody commented, this laptop flies. Browsing the web, watching Full HD videos, heck, even doing graphics design are all something this notebook will survive. Hardcore gaming is of course off-limits, there wouldn’t be space inside for a real gaming card. In any case, the LG is quite expensive – if you want only the best and can afford it, I don’t see a reason to skip it though.