Lenovo’s new Ideapad 510s ultrabook model, the 80TK002GUS is a lightweight, powerful and versatile laptop, perfect for travelling professionals, home offices or even college students.
As it always happens with ultrabooks, Lenovo has decided to keep things simple with the slim and shiny silver 510s. The design language is toned down, it features a monochromatic, or better said, gray scale chassis with the iconic keys that are rounded at the bottom. The 510s is a clean, uncomplicated and well made notebook.
The Lenovo IdeaPad 510s 80TK002GUS is powered by a dual core Intel Core i7-6500U processor, a powerful unit with a base clock speed of 2.5 GHz and a turbo frequency of 3.1 GHz, 4 megabytes of cache and a thermal design power of 15 Watts. Multitasking and everyday work will feel like a walk in the park with the i7 and even more demanding programs will work without problems. Benchmark tests support this claim, giving the processor in question around 4300 points, well suited for the needs of everyone who wants an ultrabook and an adequate hardware choice for the asking price.
Standard system memory is limited to 8 gigabytes of DDR4 RAM, a fair and satisfying amount for even the most intensive of tasks, apart from heavy 3D rendering or movie editing. However, the 8 gigs will assist in everything from mundane tasks to photo editing or video streaming to make overall experience as smooth as possible.
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Storage space is a bit limited, but you get the blazing fast and snappy 256-gigabyte solid state drive. The available storage may not be enough to hold large media collections, but should prove abundant when used to store your vacation photos, office documents, programs and some music. For anything more, you’ll likely need an external hard drive or a cloud storage solution, such as Dropbox or Google Drive.
Graphics and Display
The Lenovo 510s 80TK002GUS comes with an entry-level graphics card, the AMD Radeon R7 M460 model. With 2 gigabytes of VRAM available, this rather basic video card will be able to run Crysis 3 at medium to high settings, but will struggle with the new Fifa 17 game or with Overwatch and likely with any new titles. However, it will help boost rendering in visual programs such as Photoshop, Illustrator, InDesign or Lightroom – great for creative types or college students.
This model has a 14-inch LCD screen with an LED-backlit FHD IPS display. Thanks to the In-Plane-Switching technology, colors will appear more vivid and viewing angles will be available to almost 180 degrees without changing the appearance of what is displayed.
The 80TK002GUS comes with the standard variety of ports we can find on most mid-range laptops and ultrabooks nowadays:
- 2 x USB3.0 ports
- 1 x USB2.0 port
- 1 x HDMI-out
- 1 x Audio Combo Jack
- 1 x SD card reader
- 1 x Kensington Lock
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As much as connectivity is concerned, the Lenovo 510s is equipped with a 802.11ac wireless card with built-in Bluetooth 4.0 technology. The latest wireless protocol, the 802.11ac basically ensures increased transfer speeds, improved signal quality on larger distances between the laptop and the router and decreased buffer times.
There aren’t many groundbreaking features to talk about, but some of them deserve a mention. The Ideapad 510s has:
- Backlit Keyboard – A discrete and fuzzy light illuminates the keys to increase typing efficiency while you’re working in dark environments or dim lit rooms.
- Premium Audio – The stereo speakers are certified by Harman Audio and offer crisp highs and deep lows.
- Build Quality – The overall design, although understated, is what can only be described as eye candy. Certain elements are made from aluminum, such as the cover and palm rest, while the logo is plated with nickel and the touchpad is diamond cut. Overall, it feels like a premium device, with extra care given to essential areas.
Portability and Battery Life
When talking about portability, it’s important to also talk about size. While its absolute weight is nothing spectacular at first, considering the Lenovo IdeaPad 510s 80TK002GUS is a 14-inch laptop with a dedicated video card, it becomes apparent this is a rather lightweight device. At 3.7 pounds, the Lenovo won’t be such a burden to carry in your backpack or bag, but will become a pain while travelling for long periods of time without a car.
As for battery life, the 510s offers just 6 hours of video playback before needing a wall socket. Whether that’s acceptable or not for a light ultrabook is up to each individual’s opinion. I personally think it could have been better, even if the screen size is bigger when compared to other similar priced notebooks. However, if you want the best of both worlds, you should steer towards a much more expensive and uncompromising ultrabook.
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Although the Lenovo IdeaPad 510s 80TK002GUS has a somewhat unsatisfying battery life, all other aspects regarding hardware specs, features, display and ease of use are on point, or even better than the price bracket it belongs to. Therefore, I think the 510s is ideal for air/train travel, work and home office environments and for college students, especially those who pursue creative or technical fields.