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Home » Lenovo Legion 5 overview: A masterclass in mid-price gaming

Lenovo Legion 5 overview: A masterclass in mid-price gaming

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There’s no extra aggressive a part of the laptop computer market than the decrease to mid-price gaming section. It appears each few weeks a brand new machine pops up with an Nvidia RTX 30-series GPU, a 144Hz+ show and a worth between £1,000 and £1,500.

Solely lately we reviewed each the Asus TUF Sprint F15 and the Acer Nitro 5, two very good machines that characterize glorious worth for cash, redefining the kind of efficiency you’ll be able to count on from a sub-£1,500 gaming laptop computer. Now Lenovo has weighed in with its new Legion 5, however can it outdo the remaining?

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Lenovo Legion 5 overview: What it’s essential know

The Legion 5 replaces the Legion 5P in Lenovo’s lineup and advantages from a Ryzen 7 5800H CPU, an Nvidia GeForce RTX 3070 GPU, a 165Hz show and an RGB-laden keyboard. It’s accessible in each 15.6in and 17in flavours and comes with 16GB of RAM and a 512GB SSD.

There are different cheaper variants of the Legion 5 accessible, however these include the much less highly effective Nvidia GeForce RTX 3060 GPU and have shows with decrease refresh charges.

READ NEXT: The most effective low cost gaming laptops to purchase

Lenovo Legion 5 overview: Value and competitors

The mannequin I used to be despatched for overview (Ryzen 7, 16GB RAM, RTX 3070, 512GB SSD) retails for £1,299, which is an excellent worth for the specification. However competitors is fierce on this worth bracket and when you’re after the utmost gaming bang in your laptop computer buck, there are many different contenders.

Acer’s newest Ryzen 7 5800H and RTX 3060-powered Nitro 5 has rather a lot going for it. It’s extremely highly effective for a mere £1,000, has a plethora of improve choices and is designed uncompromisingly with the gamer in thoughts. On the draw back, battery life is poor and the display is woefully inaccurate with regards to color illustration.

In the meantime, the Asus TUF Sprint F15 provides glorious battery life, an awesome sound system and a surprising white polycarbonate physique, plus the identical RTX 3070 GPU because the Legion 5 however coupled to an Intel Core i7 processor. The problem with this laptop computer, nevertheless, is getting maintain of the mannequin with each the RTX 3070 GPU and the stunning 240Hz show. If you cannot, then the RTX 3060/240Hz combo is the one to go for – it prices round £1,400, however that additionally will get you a usefully capacious 1TB SSD.

Lastly, MSI’s new Katana GF66 is another choice price contemplating. Accessible for rather less than £1,200 with a Core i7 11800H chip, RTX 3060 GPU and a 144Hz show, it seems like strong worth. If you wish to save a number of quid then the GeForce 3050 Ti model is simply £999.

Lenovo Legion 5 overview: Design and construct high quality

The design of the latest Legion breaks no new floor: it seems and feels very similar to earlier fashions. However that’s no unhealthy factor, actually, since but once more it advantages from a handful of Legion-specific attributes, such because the considerate grouping of many of the laptop computer’s ports on the rear, and a lid-hinge set 30mm ahead.

Two colors can be found: Phantom Blue with a 4-zone RGB keyboard backlight and Diamond White with blue backlighting. Our overview mannequin is the previous, but when I used to be requested to explain the color I’d say it was nearer to darkish gray than blue.

The Legion collection has all the time appeared rather less juvenile than a number of the competitors, and the brand new mannequin is not any completely different. There’s nothing about it that obnoxiously shouts “gaming machine”, aside from the keyboard’s RGB lighting and the sticker that factors out that Fn+Q is a shortcut to alter the cooling profile within the Lenovo Vantage app. We’re all in favour of a little bit of aesthetic restraint.

The aluminium physique feels reassuringly strong and the laptop computer’s lid has little or no flex to it. I like the way in which the hinge has been calibrated as a way to open it with only one hand, too.

With regards to dimension and weight, the Legion 5 is nothing out of the bizarre. Measuring 363 x 259 x 26mm and tipping the scales at 2.35kg, it’s positively sitting on the higher fringe of the category, particularly with regards to depth, because of the ledge that stands out past the hinge meeting.

The Legion 5’s Lenovo TrueStrike keyboard is tough to search out fault with, too. It’s a spacious, full-width affair with a numeric keypad and a set of full-size cursor keys which can be set barely aside from the principle keyboard. Bodily it feels rock strong, and the important thing journey is completely judged at 1.8mm. The 105 x 70mm trackpad is offset to the left by fairly a way however is in any other case equally excellent.

Many of the Legion 5’s ports are lined up alongside the again. From right here, you’ll discover an RJ45 1Gbit/sec LAN connector, two USB Sort-A 3.2 Gen 1 ports, a Sort-C port that helps DisplayPort 1.4, an HDMI 2.1 connector and a bespoke DC-in jack.

On the precise aspect sits an equal Sort-C port and a 3.5mm audio jack, whereas on the left is a 3rd Sort-A port and a shutter button to isolate the 720p webcam, which is constructed into the highest of the show. General, that is an impressively complete and well-laid-out choice that solely lacks Thunderbolt assist, though since that is an AMD system its absence doesn’t come as a shock.

Getting access to the interior {hardware} of the Legion 5 takes just a little extra effort and time than you may count on. To begin with, unclipping the underside of the case for the primary time is a bit nerve-wracking. You’ll want a really skinny instrument to pry the case aside, and it’s a lot simpler to peel it open when you begin at one of many entrance corners. of Lenovo Legion 5 Gaming Laptop computer | Teardown and Person Upgradeability

As soon as inside, it’s a must to take away three screws and a canopy plate to entry the slot for a second 2280 M.2 SSD after which do the identical once more to get on the pre-installed SSD and wi-fi playing cards. In an effort to entry the 2 SODIMM reminiscence slots, it’s essential gently prise aside eight metallic grips that maintain one more cowl plate in place.

It’s all fairly doable, simply not fairly as easy as it’s with, as an example, the Acer Nitro 5, which additionally has area for a 2.5in SATA3 drive. In accordance with Lenovo, essentially the most you’ll be able to improve the Legion 5 to is 2 1TB SSDs and two 16GB sticks of RAM. For completionism stakes, the wi-fi card is an Intel AX200 unit that helps Wi-Fi 6 and Bluetooth 5.1

READ NEXT: The most effective gaming keyboards

Lenovo Legion 5 overview: Show and audio

Technically talking, the 15.6in 1,920 x 1,080 IPS panel is effectively up to speed. The utmost brightness of 345cd/m² and the distinction ratio of 1,313:9 are each strong, whereas the Delta E (color accuracy) of 0.63 is fairly excellent for a gaming laptop computer. The Legion 5’s sRGB gamut protection of 94% and quantity of 98.8% do not let the aspect down, both.

As you’ll count on of a gaming laptop computer, the display isn’t touch-enabled and it has a matte coating. If you need a show with a QHD decision or assist for Nvidia’s G-Sync expertise, then you definitely’ll want to have a look at the costlier Legion 5 Professional or Legion 7 fashions.

The speaker system within the Legion 5 is nice sufficient, however hardly distinctive. It may possibly’t evaluate with the Asus TUF Sprint F15, because it has smaller drivers, however there’s an affordable quantity of quantity and the sound is tight and punchy. The absence of any type of
bass is the most important challenge, although, which is one thing the pre-installed Nahimic management panel can solely achieve this a lot to ameliorate.

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Lenovo Legion 5 overview: Efficiency and battery life

The Legion 5 performs effectively, however then I anticipated nothing much less from a laptop computer with a Ryzen 7 5800H octa-core processor, RTX 3070 GPU, 16GB of DDR4 RAM and 8GB of VRAM.

It chewed by way of the Professional Critiques 4K media benchmark in brief order and produced a rating of 284. That’s higher than the Core i7-based TUF Sprint F15 (194) however not fairly pretty much as good because the AMD 5800H/RTX3060-equipped Acer Nitro 5 (323).

Turning to sport exams, the Legion 5 averaged 61fps within the Hitman 2 check and 68fps in Shadow of the Tomb Raider. The latter was carried out with ray tracing enabled, DLSS off and all different graphics settings set on the highest stage.

Lastly, we ran Wolfenstein: Youngblood below quite a lot of situations: the primary with ray tracing off, then with ray tracing switched on and DLSS off and once more with each ray tracing and DLSS on. The outcomes had been mightily spectacular, returning common body charges of 160fps, 126fps and 143fps respectively.

All of these scores are increased than these recorded by both the Acer Nitro or the Asus TUF Sprint. It’s additionally on a par with these from the Asus ROG Zephyrus G15, which is a £2,600 gaming pocket book with the identical GPU however a Ryzen 9 5900HS processor as a substitute. As little as 18 months in the past such efficiency from a £1,300 pocket book would have been unthinkable.

The Legion 5’s surprisingly excessive body charges might be all the way down to a pair of Lenovo-specific components. First, there’s the Lenovo Legion AI Engine, which, based on Lenovo, is “a system of AI options which dynamically shifts energy between the CPU and GPU for extra FPS”. Sure, it’s a frustratingly obscure description, however no matter it’s, it appears to make a distinction.

The second string to the Legion 5’s bow is a extremely environment friendly cooling system. Regardless of the followers being quieter than most gaming laptops even when working at full pace, they do an excellent job of expelling sizzling air. Place your hand subsequent to both of the aspect vents simply ahead of the hinge and you’ll actually really feel a powerful present of sizzling air being pushed out.

The SK Hynix SSD recorded consecutive learn and write scores of three,137MB/s and a couple of,712MB/s respectively, which once more is best than something the direct competitors can handle and really respectable for a PCI-E Gen3 x4 drive.

In accordance with the spec sheet, the Legion 5 ought to have a 60Wh battery however the battery in my overview unit was most positively an 80Wh (5,210mAh) unit. Had it been the previous, that may extra simply clarify the fairly poor efficiency in our video rundown check.

Operating for simply 7hrs 32mins, the Legion 5 is effectively under common for a laptop computer on this class. The Asus TUF Sprint F15 managed near twice that with its 90Wh battery. Though the 300W energy module that comes with the Legion 5 is a 600g brick of a factor, you can even cost with a Sort-C charger with a 65W or increased output or with a 45W Sort-C charger when the unit is turned off or in standby.

Lenovo Legion 5 overview: Verdict

The brand new Legion 5 is one more nice choice on this more and more contested part of the laptop computer market. It’s able to higher gaming efficiency than each the Acer Nitro 5 and the Asus TUF Sprint F15 and it additionally comes inside putting distance of the far pricier Asus ROG Zephyrus G15 as effectively.

It’s not nearly gaming, although: the Legion 5 each seems and looks like a extra upmarket gadget than the Nitro or the Sprint, though granted the previous is £300 cheaper and the Asus has a greater sound system and longer-lasting battery life.

If it was my cash, nevertheless, then I’d say the Lenovo nearly edges it. I principally use headphones whereas gaming anyway and normally have my laptop computer plugged into the wall it doesn’t matter what I am doing. And in addition to, the Legion 5’s unmatched gaming credentials massively outweigh any of its minor drawbacks.

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