Lenovo IdeaPad Slim 7 Professional evaluation: Large display for the mainstream

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I just lately reviewed the Gigabyte Aero 16, a 16-inch Intel-powered workstation with a strong GPU. It was sizzling, heavy, costly, and had little in the best way of battery life. The 16-inch laptop computer class has historically been dominated by these forms of desktop replacements.

Lenovo’s IdeaPad Slim 7 is making an attempt one thing totally different with its 16-inch body. It is an AMD-powered, moveable laptop computer with a extra midrange-level GPU and a 16-inch display. It runs on battery for the entire day. And it is much more inexpensive than many laptops of this dimension, with a price ticket of simply $1,000 ($1,015, to be actual) for this check configuration. (This unit is at present bought out on Lenovo’s web site, however the firm says it needs to be again in inventory quickly.)

With a stable construct and an unobtrusive look, a large port choice, and a high-resolution, excessive refresh fee, 16:10 show, the Slim 7 (if yow will discover one in inventory) is a aggressive machine throughout. It will not be the best choice for everybody, but it surely’s an excellent reminder that getting a laptop computer with an enormous display would not require many individuals to pay hundreds of {dollars} or sacrifice all-day battery life.

A part of that is most likely the Lenovo title on each of those gadgets, however utilizing the IdeaPad seems like utilizing a (rather more costly) ThinkPad in some ways. It is not as immediately recognizable because the ThinkPad (two thrilling coloration choices are Cloud Grey and Storm Gray), but it surely’s definitely constructed with a sturdy aluminum chassis and a cushty end that did not scratch simply in my testing interval. does. You’ll be able to see that there’s a slight lip on the high of the show the place the webcam resides. By a bit, I imply slight – it is a considerably much less noticeable protrusion than on the ThinkPad Z collection. It combined up fairly rapidly and did not have an effect on my expertise with the laptop computer.

The keyboard additionally approaches ThinkPad high quality (which is excessive reward). The keys have a pleasant snap to them, and Lenovo makes use of the big deck to slot in a full numpad. I exceeded my regular typing velocity and actually felt like my fingers had been flying; It’s a keyboard I will likely be unhappy to say goodbye after I ship this unit again.

The Lenovo IdeaPad Slim 7 Professional’s deck matches a spacious keyboard and a full numpad.

There’s additionally a handy hotkey: You’ll be able to press Fn+Q to swap between cooling profiles (Excessive Efficiency, Battery Saver, and many others.), so you do not have to dig into Lenovo’s software program to do it. As somebody who steadily swaps between profiles, this was cool. My solely nitpick is that the Backspace secret’s on the brief aspect and really near the Num Lock key. I hit the Num Lock key a number of occasions accidentally after I needed to hit Backspace.

Do not let the phrase “slim” get your expectations too excessive: This is not a featherweight system, and it has some severe energy. The chassis is a stable 4.59 kilos and as much as .79 inches thick. It is moveable for a 16-inch, however I need to be certain folks do not look “slim” and anticipate the LG Gram. Should you’re searching for one thing smaller, there are 14-inch Intel fashions of the Slim 7 Professional which you can get for lower than $1,000.

However the place the Slim is absolutely punching above its weight class is the show. It is a 2560 x 1600 display with fairly skinny bezels. The 120Hz refresh fee makes a noticeable distinction once you’re scrolling via lengthy articles or paperwork (as I do every single day) – after spending a little bit of time at 120Hz, going again to 60Hz simply feels improper.

In any other case, the panel reached 364 nits of brightness in my testing and displayed shiny and correct colours. It was additionally shiny and had a noticeable glare indoors, however nothing that hindered my work.

The IdeaPad’s 16-inch show is superb: it is shiny, colourful, massive, and high-resolution.

The one actual distinction in connectivity is the dearth of Thunderbolt as that is an AMD system. There are two USB 3.2 Gen 1, one USB-C 3.2 Gen 2, one HDMI 1.4b, a card reader, and a combo audio jack. Except for Thunderbolt equipment, I used to be in a position to plug in no matter I wanted with out a lot problem. With the ability to cost by USB-C, along with the devoted energy port, was additionally useful. Talking of audio, the audio system aren’t the loudest, however they ship surprisingly clear sound with various ranges of noise.

Lenovo fans ought to be aware that there’s a technique by which the IdeaPad differs considerably from its older ThinkPad cousins: the webcam. It helps each Home windows Whats up and presence detection, that are useful. However there isn’t a simple solution to flip it off both. This would possibly not be an issue for everybody, however I actually just like the shutter. There are a lot of bodily ThinkPad fashions – as somebody who makes use of their webcam all day, it is good to have the ability to double-confirm that it is off. . There isn’t any bodily shutter within the Slim 7 Professional, neither is there a default kill swap on the keyboard; You may must dive into Lenovo’s software program to show it off.

The Slim 7 Professional has a good collection of ports, together with full-size HDMI and a full-size SD card slot.

On the within, my check unit has AMD’s Ryzen 7 5800H, 16GB of RAM, and 1TB of storage, along with Nvidia’s GeForce RTX 3050 GPU. That is the one accessible configuration so far as I can see from Lenovo’s web site. And it is quick. I ran Zoom calls on a stack of Chrome tabs with no slowdown, fan noise, or keyboard warmth of any form, even with Battery Saver on. The Ryzen 7 5800h is an effective processor, and I do not anticipate it to be troublesome with the duties most individuals are doing. The RTX 3050 will not be the only option for full-resolution gaming, but it surely ought to be capable to help to graphics-heavy workloads.

Battery life is one space the place the Slim 7 Professional could fall brief for some. I used to be getting about seven and a half hours of steady use with the display on medium brightness. That is spectacular for a 16-incher with such a high-resolution panel, however you possibly can definitely discover laptops at this value level that may final a very long time.

One a part of the Slim 7 expertise the place the cracks begin to present is the bloatware. None on this system tons It is junk on it – no random video games and software program backend – but it surely did include a number of McAfee packages that despatched me popups round and had been a little bit of a ache to uninstall. It makes extra sense on this IdeaPad than on a $3,000 ThinkPad, but it surely nonetheless seems like loads that cheapens an in any other case nice expertise.

The IdeaPad Slim 7 Professional fills a distinct segment that simply is not too crowded.

After I hear that somebody I do know desires a laptop computer with a 16-inch or 17-inch display, I typically battle to discover a advice. The truth is that the majority flagship fashions in that class aren’t good decisions for normal client use: Corporations typically assume {that a} purchaser searching for a 16-inch display can also be an influence person who wants heavy GPU energy, the corporate money. Is supposed to be spent, and a few ignore the burden.

If I used to be searching for, for instance, my cousin who desires his films to look actually massive or my buddy who wanted a much bigger display to take the bar check final 12 months, I might purchase this system because the Dell XPS 17. I can counsel one thing. It is extra inexpensive and has a processor that may deal with what most individuals have to do. And whereas these searching for portability could choose one of many many light-weight 15-inch laptops, the 16:10 settles on that portability for a bit extra display house. It’s kind of in-between, however I can see an viewers for it.

It is a good reminder of simply how absurdly costly another well-built laptops are. The most cost effective 14-inch ThinkPad X1 Yoga goes for a number of hundred {dollars} greater than this slim mannequin, and I might love to make use of the IdeaPad any day—whereas the Yoga has many security measures and design staples that are not value a lot. For its buyer base, I legitimately assume the IdeaPad’s greater and higher display gives extra advantages to your common client. And whereas the Slim 7 Professional may be onerous to search out, it is value remembering that in the event you’re contemplating shopping for the ThinkPads, MacBooks, and XPS of the world, you need to ensure you’re not overlooking such cool gadgets. that may meet your wants. low value factors.

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