Since the release of Windows 8 with touch functionality, Lenovo has been expanding in many different directions and navigating away from traditional laptop designs and features. The Y70 Touch stands to be the largest Lenovo laptop to date, built for gaming it is big, solid and designed to be a daily workhorse.
In recent years, Lenovo, known for high quality, has become one of the top PC producers in the world. And with the inception of Windows 8 with touch functionality, the manufacturer has gone to great lengths to release new innovations and features in its line of laptops. The Lenovo Y70 is no exception starting with a price tag of around £999.99 with lots of power.
Design and Aesthetics
As for the design, I love it. It’s got lots of perks in the exterior design. At one inch in thickness, the Y70 is designed with a sturdy aluminium chassis and a criss-cross type design finished in a sleek black colour. Lenovo also placed its signature on the lid with a classy logo finished in dark grey chrome which adds class without being too overstated.
When you open the lid, you are greeted with a surprising 17.3 inch full high definition display with 1920 x 1080 resolution and multi-touch functionality. Up to 10 points of contact can be on the screen at the one time, working perfectly. The screen is the largest screen that Lenovo has released and is specifically designed for gaming. It is also aggressively equipped to handle heavy duty tasks such as video editing and other work intensive applications.
The keyboard surroundings and device interior is designed with a sleek finish in the colour black which is soft to the touch. The keyboard deck design is an obvious sign that the device is geared toward gaming with sharp red bordering around the dual speakers, keyboard keys, and the functionality buttons. There is a generously sized durable touchpad that is lined with metal material.
The front edge of the chassis is slightly tapered and adorned with a series of LED indicators that represent various functions such as the battery, device power, drive activity, and the touchpad. Along the bottom front edge and the back edge are a set of rubber guards which are designed to prevent the device from sliding around during use. The Lenovo Y70 weighs in at just over 7.5 pounds and offers dimensions of 16.6 x 11.4 x 1.0 inches.
The Lenovo Y70 Keyboard and Touchpad
The keyboard appearance is like no other on the market with its red backlighting on the keys which make typing in darkly lit environments a breeze. The contrast between the jet black keys and the red backlighting is beautiful. The key design contains keys that are curved which is a signature design of Lenovo devices and provides a natural typing experience. The keys have less travel room than other devices of this calibre which takes a bit of getting used to. I wonder why Lenovo didn’t take advantage of the larger surface area and space out the keys more however, it is not a deal breaker by any means and I still enjoy using the laptop for typing as the keys are comfortable and quiet. Additionally, the keyboard is designed with a dedicated number pad.
The soft-touch, slightly rubberised, matte finish palm rest takes up the most real-estate, allowing plenty of space for your hands to rest comfortably and gives the device a premium feel.
The touchpad is located just under the G and H keys on the keyboard and is generously sized at 4.2 x 2.8 inches. Fingers slide across the silky feeling touchpad easily. Like the palm rest it is matte black which means that fingerprints will build up and it may need to be cleaned more regularly. So, it is a plus that it is also designed to be disabled and then re-enabled, which comes in handy for cleaning your laptop. This is accomplished using hotkeys which are assigned to this type of task. The touchpad is also highly responsive, if a little too sensitive, to Windows 8.1 touch gestures including pinching, triple finger swipes, finger rotations, and more. If you are not a fan of touchpads there is always the option to get a mouse, which is most likely what I would do. No laptop is perfect but overall the interior of the Lenovo Y70 is sleek and well designed with great attention to detail.
Take a look at this video of the Lenovo Y70 being unboxed, to see if it looks as good as it does in it’s pictures!
The Lenovo Y70 Touch offers a decent array of port connectivity. On one side of the device, you will find two SuperSpeed USB 3.0 ports which are surrounded by a red border. On the same side is an Ethernet port for establishing a wired connection, one HDMI port for connecting to a flat screen television, one Gigabit LAN (Local Area Network) port, and a power input port for connecting the device with the included AC adapter.
On the other side of the device, you will find a 4 in 1 card reader, one USB 2.0 port for connecting older USB devices, a combination audio/microphone jack, and one S/PDIF (Sony/Philips Digital Interface Format) output which allows you to easily move audio within two devices. This side of the device is also equipped with a Kensington lock slot for added security.
The Y70 Touch is also equipped with Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g/n/ac with ac being the latest standard for connecting to a fast wireless connection. You also have access to Bluetooth 4.0 for connecting Bluetooth enabled devices.
When compared with other gaming laptops in this class, the connectivity options stack up well to other similar devices. The only drawback is the Y70 Touch could stand to use a few more USB ports for increased versatility and perhaps one extra SSD card slot as well.
The Lenovo Y70 Touch laptop is equipped with a 17.3-inch full high definition multi-touch display with a 1920 x 1080p resolution and IPS (In Plane Switching) technology. Thanks to this IPS technology the screen has great viewing angles. This is important for enhancing your gaming experience or sharing the screen with other viewers when engaging in other computing tasks. The display is edge-to-edge glass which I think makes it look even more attractive. The 1920 x 1080 resolution also makes for a fairly bright display screen with colour accuracy which is where other laptops of this calibre typically fall short.
Gamers are known to willingly spend a lot on computers that have the best graphics for the best gaming experience possible. Will they be pleased with the Lenovo Y70? Well, when playing games such as the Shadow of Mordor, the quality of the display makes it easy to see the detail in the different colours of rock sediment. Additionally, when the scenes change during the game, the impressive amount of detailing that appears with each scene makes for a pleasant gaming experience. The colour saturation is impressive with colours popping out, as well as this, the contrast is good and black shows up deep for darker scenes in the game. The same experience is true when using the Y70 Touch to view movies and videos. Overall this is a budget laptop considering the prices gamers pay, there are more high-end gaming laptops on the market but without a doubt anyone would enjoy playing games on this laptop.
In a recent colour accuracy test the Y70 touch scored just over 2.0. The best score on a Delta-E test is 0 but still, the Lenovo Y70 exceeded other laptops in this class such as the Pulse 17 and Stealth Pro which scored just under 9.0.
The Lenovo Y70 Touch is equipped with Windows 8.1 64-bit operating system. It also comes with an array of software which can be customised when you order the laptop and choose a configuration.
Standard specifications include:
The Y70 Touch is outfitted with an Intel Core i7 processor running at 2.5GHz with 16GB of Random Access Memory (RAM). The device also includes a 1TB hard drive running at 400 RPMs (rotations per minute). The hard drive is not a Solid State Drive and instead has moving parts. It’s a pity that Lenovo opted for this hard drive as it slows the computer down. Using the laptop on a daily basis for work purposes you can definitely feel that performance is slacking. Quite a disappointment when you consider how good the rest of the hardware is. The performance is acceptable, but not as exceptional as a Solid State Drive.
In a Geekbench test that is designed to measure device performance, the Y70 Touch scored just over 9800. The Stealth Pro, which is a comparable device with the same processing performance, scored just over 13.0. Plus, the Stealth Pro has two SSD slots and higher performance graphics processing technology.
In other tests, the Y70 Touch hard drive and SSD was capable of duplicating just under 5GB of multimedia files in under 3 minutes. This amounts to a rate of 29 Mbps (megabits per second) which is slower than the Pulse 17 and Stealth Pro at 391Mbps and 565 Mbps respectively.
In terms of the webcam specifications, it is just okay with a resolution of 720p. This does not exactly produce vivid colours but will get the job done when it comes to video-conferencing and Skype calls.
On the keyboard deck, you will find a pair of JBL speakers which are outlined in a red border and produce an above average sound quality. When you activate Dolby Digital Plus, this significantly improves the sound quality and provides you with balanced audio performance. Plus, the speakers are designed with a sharp angle which helps to produce a sound that is far from the typical tinny sound you get with traditional laptops.
Any laptop that wants to be known as a gaming laptop needs more than integrated graphics. Under the hood of Lenovo’s Y70 you will find a dedicated GeForce GTX 860M Graphics Processing Unit (GPU) which is the last generation Nvidia GPU with 4GB of RAM. Regardless, it can still handle the latest games such as Shadow of Mordor, only with a reduced fps (frames per second) rate than the latest Maxwell Graphics Processing Units.
The Lenovo Y70 Touch is equipped with a 4-cell 54Whr (watt per hour) battery which, in worst case scenario tests, displayed a battery life of just over two hours. The test involved continuous looping of video with the screen adjusted to maximum brightness and the wireless connection disabled.
In another test, the battery life increased to just under four hours with the screen brightness adjusted to sixty percent. The same activities were used as described above which means the screen brightness alone can have a significant impact on how much you can eke out of the battery.
On the average, the battery life is just over three hours and thirty minutes with continuous Internet use and the screen adjusted to a brightness of 100 nits.
Needless to say the battery life is a big drawback and certainly a deal breaker for anyone that intends to use it on the go. You’re going to have to stay close to a socket!
Prices for the Lenovo Y70 Touch start at £999.99. The base configuration is equipped with an Intel Core i7 Central Processing Unit (CPU) running at 2.5GHz with 8GB of RAM and a 1TB (terabyte) hard drive running at 400 rpms. The SSD is 8GB with a GeForce GTX 860M GPU that includes 2GB of VRAM (Video RAM). You will also find an Intel high definition graphics 4600 processing unit as well.
The mid-range configuration is priced at around £1,199.99 and is equipped with an Intel Core i7 Central Processing Unit (CPU) running at 2.5GHz with 16GB of RAM and a 1TB (terabyte) hard drive running at 400 rpms. The SSD is 8GB with a GeForce GTX 860M GPU that includes 4GB of VRAM (Video RAM). You will also find an Intel high definition graphics 4600 processing unit as well.
The premium configuration is priced at around £1,399.99 and is equipped with an Intel Core i7 Central Processing Unit (CPU) running at 2.5GHz with 16GB of RAM and a 512GB Solid State hard drive. The SSD is 8GB with a GeForce GTX 860M GPU that includes 4GB of VRAM (Video RAM). You will also find an Intel high definition graphics 4600 processing unit like the previous configurations.
For detailed benchmarks for the Lenovo Y70 laptop, then I recommend that you visit TechRadar for tests on Graphics and 3D Mark and more.
What are the Pros and Cons?
The Lenovo Y70 Touch offers a lot features and functionality at an affordable price. Here are a few pros and cons to round out the review:
- Exceptional audio quality with balanced sound.
- Accurate colours on a full high definition display with IPS.
- Solid graphics performance provides for a pleasant gaming and/or video viewing experience.
- Unique design and build.
- Red backlighting on the keyboard is a plus in dimly lit environments.
- Device runs cool and performance is quiet.
- Standard configuration could use a Solid State hard drive as opposed to a mechanical one.
- Battery life is quite bad.
- A few extra USB ports would increase functionality and versatility.
- Touchpad can be overly sensitive.
Lenovo Y70 Touch Laptop
The final verdict...
Overall, for the price point, you get a great looking device that is reasonably portable and provides gaming enthusiasts with a highly functional gaming laptop that is very well built.
Additionally, the Lenovo Y70 Touch provides you with a great display screen, exceptional keyboard for accurate typing, and an above average audio experience as well. Well suited to both productivity and gaming.
For gamers that value a good price as much as they value performance, you won’t find a better device on the market.
If you desire more performance, it may be worthwhile to swap out the mechanical hard drive for a Solid State drive or go for the premium configuration. Otherwise, the Y70 Touch is a great laptop for playing the latest games.
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