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Lenovo IdeaPad Y560 15.6-inch Thin And Light Laptop PC

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Lenovo IdeaPad Y560 15.6-inch Thin And Light Laptop PC

Lenovo IdeaPad Y560

©Lenovo

The Bottom Line

Nov 11 2010 - The IdeaPad Y560 offers some unique features for an $1100 15-inch laptop including a Blu-ray drive and switchable ATI graphics. The switchable graphics will be very important as those wanting long battery life will need to turn the dedicated graphics off otherwise they will suffer below average battery life. The unique SlideNav feature also offers a unique way to launch frequent applications quickly.
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Pros

  • Blu-ray Drive
  • Lots Of Peripheral Ports Including eSATA And ExpressCard
  • Switchable ATI Graphics

Cons

  • Below Average Battery Life With Dedicated Graphics
  • Glossy Surfaces Around Keyboard Show Fingerprints and Smudges Easily
  • Lots Of Trialware Installed

Description

  • Intel Core i5-460M Dual Core Mobile Processor
  • 4GB PC3-8500 DDR3 Memory
  • 500GB 5400rpm SATA Hard Drive
  • Blu-ray Reader And Dual Layer Burner DVD Combo Drive
  • 15.6" WXGA (1366x768) LED Backlit Display With 1.3 Megapixel Webcam
  • ATI Radeon HD 5730 Dedicated Graphics With 1GB Memory
  • Gigabit Ethernet, 802.11b/g/n Wireless
  • Four USB 2.0, eSATA, HDMI, VGA, ExpressCard/34, 6-in-1 Card Reader
  • 15.2" x 10" x 1.3" @ 6 lbs.
  • Windows 7 Home Premium

Guide Review - Lenovo IdeaPad Y560 15.6-inch Thin And Light Laptop PC

Nov 11 2010 - Lenovo's IdeaPad Y560 is their mainstream consumer offering that features a 15.6-inch display panel. Performance of the system is quite good thanks to the new Intel Core i5-460M dual core processor. This combined with 4GB of DDR3 memory allow the system to handle most any tasks without slowdowns from multitasking or memory heavy applications.

For the hard drive storage space, the IdeaPad Y560 offers a fairly standard 500GB hard drive that is typical of laptops in this price range. The drive offers mediocre performance as it uses the standard 5400rpm laptop drive spin rate compared to much of the competition that is moving to faster 7200rpm drives. What really sets this IdeaPad Y560 apart from the crowd is the inclusion of a Blu-ray combo drive. This allows it to playback Blu-ray movies or be used to playback and record CDs or DVDs. With the decreasing prices on Blu-ray and rising demand, it is surprising that this isn't offered by more companies.

While Lenovo does make a version of the IdeaPad with a 3D display, the Y560 uses a more traditional standard 15.6-inch display panel with a 1366x768 resolution. Driving the graphics is an ATI Mobility Radeon HD 5730 graphics processor with 1GB of memory. This provides sufficient performance for those looking at doing some casual 3D gaming up to the display's native resolution. It also features a switchable graphics format to use an integrated solution when 3D graphics isn't needed. A small switch on the front right of the laptop allows users to switch between modes.

Lenovo includes a standard six-cell battery pack with the IdeaPad Y560. This is a fairly typical size for many laptops in this size range. In DVD playback testing, the system lasted just two and a quarter hours before going into standby mode. This is roughly thirty minutes less than the average laptop in this class. Blu-ray playback will likely fall just under two hours while more typical usage should yield just under three. Now, if users turn off the dedicated graphics, they can expect roughly a twenty to forty percent improvement in running times making it more in line with other laptops.

Lenovo is well known for its keyboard designs. The IdeaPad uses a different layout from their popular ThinkPad designs but it is still very comfortable to use with little to no flex. I dislike the location of the function key on the outside of the left control key which can impact those using it for PC gaming. A unique feature to the IdeaPad Y560 is a new series of touch controls above the keyboard that include a touch sensitive slide bar called the SlideNav. This has a number of functions but the customizable shortcuts is probably the most useful. Just by moving your finger along to the appropriate location can launch one of your chosen applications.

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