Lenovo IdeaPad Y710-200
- Good application and multitasking performance, high-definition screen, HDMI output, notebook screen can be used as a second monitor for your existing PC or notebook
- 'Game Zone' isn't located to the left of the keyboard, no optical audio output, screen looks grainy, no Gigabit networking, no digital TV tuner, no remote
Lenovo thrills us with many useful features on this IdeaPad Y710-200, but it fumbles the ball a little in its implementation of the 'Game Zone'. It's also let down by a lack of Gigabit networking and a digital TV tuner.
Price$ 3,499.00 (AUD)
The Lenovo IdeaPad Y710-200 is a desktop replacement notebook aimed at gamers and home theatre users. It's big, well-equipped and reasonably powerful, but ultimately falls a little short of what it's trying to accomplish.
Lenovo's design team has done a good job packing the IdeaPad with features and easy-to-use switches and buttons, but the 'Game Zone' is a little perplexing. This is an area on the right side of the keyboard that contains arrow keys, shortcut keys and a CPU speed control. We'd prefer it if the Game Zone was on the left side of the keyboard, as it's uncomfortable to use on the right. The speed switch is useful for when you want to use the computer at night or any other time you need peace and quiet — and it has a noticeable effect on system performance.
The switch has three settings: turbo, mid and silent. The turbo setting is the fastest, with the CPU running at 2.5GHz; the silent setting runs the CPU at 1.2GHz. This dramatic slow-down was shown in our WorldBench 6 benchmark, with the notebook scoring a miserable 42 in silent mode, but a very respectable 94 in turbo mode. In 'silent' mode the notebook was actually very quiet, while in turbo mode the fans were clearly audible. The mid setting didn't slow down the notebook's performance too much, but did noticeably reduce noise; the IdeaPad recorded a WorldBench score of 92 at this setting.
The IdeaPad Y710-200 will run productivity applications swiftly, as well as photo-editing software, and it can even be used for a little video rendering. Of course, it's great for multitasking, and its 17in widescreen display, with a native resolution of 1920x1200, provides plenty of space for lining up windows side by side. It's not all that hot for gaming. You'll still be able to run the latest DirectX 10-based games, but only at low resolutions and without any eye candy enabled; it will do a better job with older games. It costs a lot to play the latest games smoothly on a notebook, as you can see from Alienware's Area-51 m15x-R1.
Two gigabytes of RAM are installed, as are two 5400rpm hard drives. The drives are both 250GB in size (232GB formatted capacity), but Lenovo has made the system partition on the first drive only 30GB in size. This could pose problems unless you remember to install applications on the second partition.
Physically, the notebook has a glossy, yet elegant lid, but it's spoiled somewhat by blue LEDs on each side, which are no doubt there to appease gamers' lust for all things flashy. The screen is glossy, so it's susceptible to reflections. It also looks a little grainy, which can get annoying. One excellent feature of the notebook is the switch next to the D-Sub port, which allows the 17in screen to be used as a monitor for a PC.
There's a touch-panel above the keyboard that has shortcuts to pre-set equaliser settings, and there's even a switch on the front of the notebook for the subwoofer. Audio playback wasn't very loud, but it was relatively clear and it benefited greatly from the bottom-mounted subwoofer. Blu-ray movies were played back very well by the system — they looked great on the screen — and speech was handled just as well as explosions and environmental sounds. Unfortunately, the IdeaPad lacks an optical audio output.
However, it does have HDMI, so you can plug the notebook into a receiver to transport its video and audio signals to your existing home theatre set-up. The ATI graphics card is well-suited to home theatre, as you'll be able to connect it to any HDTV using HDMI and scale it appropriately if it doesn't fit your screen on the first go.
Join the Good Gear Guide newsletter!
Most Popular Reviews
- 1 Subaru XV 2017 review
- 2 Samsung 2017 QLED Q7 TV: Full, in-depth review
- 3 Kogan Atlas UltraSlim Pro laptop: full, in-depth review
- 4 Gigabyte Aorus GA-AX370-Gaming 5 AMD Ryzen AM4 motherboard review
- 5 Kogan curved 4K UHD 55-inch LED LCD TV review
Latest News Articles
- Windows 10's power-throttling feature will benefit battery-hungry laptops
- Microsoft's next Surface may be a Chromebook competitor for schools
- US says laptop ban may expand to more airports
- Intel's Cannonlake PC chip shipments may slip into next year
- Razer’s updated Blade Pro is the first ever THX-certified laptop
PCW Evaluation Team
A smarter way to print for busy small business owners, combining speedy printing with scanning and copying, making it easier to produce high quality documents and images at a touch of a button.
I've had a multifunction printer in the office going on 10 years now. It was a neat bit of kit back in the day -- print, copy, scan, fax -- when printing over WiFi felt a bit like magic. It’s seen better days though and an upgrade’s well overdue. This HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 looks like it ticks all the same boxes: print, copy, scan, and fax. (Really? Does anyone fax anything any more? I guess it's good to know the facility’s there, just in case.) Printing over WiFi is more-or- less standard these days.
As a freelance writer who is always on the go, I like my technology to be both efficient and effective so I can do my job well. The HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 Inkjet Printer ticks all the boxes in terms of form factor, performance and user interface.
I’d happily recommend this touchscreen laptop and Windows 10 as a great way to get serious work done at a desk or on the road.
Ultimately, I think the Windows 10 environment is excellent for me as it caters for so many different uses. The inclusion of the Xbox app is also great for when you need some downtime too!
For me, the Xbox Play Anywhere is a great new feature as it allows you to play your current Xbox games with higher resolutions and better graphics without forking out extra cash for another copy. Although available titles are still scarce, but I’m sure it will grow in time.
- Samsung Galaxy S8 phone: full, in-depth review
- Ryzen 5 vs Intel Core i5 CPU Australian review
- Mass Effect Andromeda review: One for the fans
- Which flagship TV is best? Sony 4K HDR Bravia 2016 versus LG 4K HDR OLED 2016
- 10 Blu-ray movies / Best looking Blu-ray movies
- FTTeam Leader Application SupportVIC
- CCUser ResearchNSW
- FTSAP SD/MM ConsultantNSW
- FTChief Security OfficerNSW
- TPReporting AnalystQLD
- FTSenior Business Analyst - UX experience NeededNSW
- FTMarket Data Analyst, Investment BankingNSW
- FTCitrix Engineer/Designer - AWS experience essentialNSW
- CCTibco Integration Specialist l Port MacquarieQLD
- FTGraduate Technical ConsultantACT
- FTHelpdesk SupportNSW
- FTSenior System EngineerNSW
- CCSecurity Specialist - NV1ACT
- CCInteraction DesignerNSW
- FTSenior Wintel EngineerNSW
- TPData AnalystVIC
- CCAutomation DeveloperNSW
- FTTIBCO DeveloperVIC
- FTBI and Report DeveloperQLD
- TPTest and Support AnalystQLD
- FTTechnical ConsultantACT
- CCTibco Integration Specialist l Port MacquarieNSW
- FTCRM Technical Specialist (Oracle Eloqua)QLD
- FTSolution Architect - NetworksVIC