Lenovo IdeaPad Y480


A high end laptop

Whenever someone mentions Lenovo, others tend to think of an office where several ThinkPad laptops of basic appearance and performance are waiting to be used by bored employees. Don’t let yourselves be fooled by this. Because the company is not all that it seems to be. They also manufacture devices which are very creative. The US$1,079 IdeaPad Y480 is such a product. It certainly offers features and elements which have been around for a small amount of time and are, thus, capable of great things. But we will elaborate on that in the following review.

Large dimensions keypad

Like we already mentioned, Lenovo is mostly known for its simple black laptops that don’t impress at first sight. As for the newest Y480, the manufacturer took care to make it look high-end. To make that happen, they used aluminum. The overall design is of a funky laptop that has nothing to do with previous models. The palm rests and the lid are covered in brushed-metal treatment.

As for keyboard, there’s nothing new to muse over. It has the same design as what we were used to on other Lenovo laptops. During our test, we typed our review at a faster pace and the buttons didn’t explode. But we were somewhat annoyed with the noise they made. So if your nerves are frail, the keys will be a con. But the pro is that there is backlighting. The large surface of the keypad has a much better feel. This time around we used it with pleasure. Multitouch gestures are very responsive.Lenovo-IdeaPad-Y480

14 inch display

Connectivity has plenty of allies. And we are talking about the following options: 1 HDMI out, 2 USB 3.0 ports, a 6-in-1 card reader, 2 USB 2.0 sockets and 1 VGA. A 1MP 720p webcam sits in its rightful place, in the center of the bezel.

But in all of this, a very important something is missing. Or rather there is, but it lacks that great quality found on other laptops. And we mean the display. It is a 14-incher, but its resolution is only 1366 x 768 pixels. And the panel is glossy. So there are two cons to deal with. And yet, we did not really see problems when we played World of Warcraft, for example. Colors were plenty accurate, albeit lacking in details here and there. The only serious issue we had was with the display’s glossiness. Viewing angles were fairly decent, but pretty soon we got annoyed with them.

Sound powered by JBL

Sound quality does not lack. The laptop’s JBL speakers are nothing more than great.

The Core i7-3610QM CPU with which the IdeaPad Y480 runs is clocked at a total of at 2.3GHz. The Nvidia GT640M-LE GPU along with 8GB of RAM and 1GB of memory make the laptop fare well in everyday use. These specs are joined by others: a 750GB hard drive, Windows 7 Home Premium operating system (the 64-bit version) and 5,400RPM. When we played games, all of them – especially the graphics processor – showed smooth action on the screen.

As for heat, the IdeaPad Y480 does get warm after half an hour of intensive use. But not so hot that you can boil eggs on it. Speaking of which, battery life is 3 hours and 30 minutes. Which is pretty decent.

Review conclusion

Putting all of the above in balance, Lenovo’s new IdeaPad Y480 is an impressive laptop. It loses points where dimensions, weight and resolution are concerned, but at the end of the day you will enjoy it a lot. If you don’t mind its shortcomings.