Review Lenovo IdeaPad Z710 59393211 Notebook

Sascha Mölck (translated by Liala Stieglitz), 01/29/2014

Quiet and strong. Lenovo furnishes a 17.3 inch casing with a Haswell Core i5 processor and a GeForce GPU, and sells the bundle for just under 700 Euros. The installed components suggest a powerful, all-round laptop. Our test report reveals whether this is really true.

Lenovo calls the devices from the different Ideapad Z product lines "Mainstream Entertainment Laptops". A look at the list of components throughout confirms this presumption: The GeForce graphics core allows playing up-to-date 3D games, and the Core i5 processor is strong enough for all routine tasks. Users who prefer a smaller size can take the largely identically equipped, 15.6 inch brother of the Z710 - the Ideapad Z510 (Core i5 4200M, GeForce GT 740M, matte, Full HD screen). A review of the Ideapad Z710 59395117 featuring a Core i7 4702MQ processor and GeForce GT 745M graphics core can be found on our Polish website. We added the benchmark scores of this model to the charts in this test report. Our review uncovers whether the Ideapad Z710 can also keep the promise it makes in theory in the practice.

We used the Toshiba Satellite L70-A-10T (Core i7 4700MQ, GeForce GT 740M), and the Asus F75VC-TY088H (Core i3 2370M, GeForce GT 720M) to classify the laptop. Actually, we would sooner say that another configuration of Asus' laptop is the Z710's contender. The Asus F75VB-TY049H sports a Core i5 3230M processor, GeForce GT 740M graphics core, 8 GB of working memory, and a 1 TB hard drive for 700 Euros. The marginally slimmed down F75VB-TY 041D (4 GB of working memory, 500 GB hard drive, no Windows operating system) is currently available for 555 Euros.

Case

The Ideapad's underlying design corresponds to Lenovo's current layout used for all Ideapad laptops. The casing is mostly plastic; only the lid's back is metal. The casings of both the Asus laptop and the Satellite are completely plastic. Lenovo wraps the base unit's upper side, and the display's bezel in matte silver-gray. The underside and the lid's back feature a black color. The lid additionally has a brushed look.

The device basically makes a solid impression. The base unit does not show any weak spots. Only the stiffness could be better. The base unit warps a bit too easily for our taste. The same applies to the lid. However, it is still within limits. The lid's back makes a much better impression. It proves to be very pressure resistant. We could only apply enough force to provoke image distortions on the lid's center. The hinges keep the lid firmly in place, but wobble a bit. Opening the lid with one hand is possible.

Serious looks - the Ideapad Z710
Serious looks - the Ideapad Z710
The lid is comprised of metal
The lid is comprised of metal
There is a large maintenance cover
There is a large maintenance cover

Connectivity

All three comparison laptops feature today's standard interfaces. The laptops are very similar in this regard. The only differences are found in the USB ports. The Ideapad (2x USB 3.0, 2x USB 2.0) has four of these ports. Both the Satellite (2x USB 3.0, 1x USB 2.0) and the F75VC (1x USB 3.0, 2x USB 2.0) only serve with three ports. The Ideapad's interface positioning is adverse; the ports are on a level with the wrist rest on both sides.

Left: Power socket, VGA out, HDMI, Ethernet, 2x USB 3.0, memory card reader
Left: Power socket, VGA out, HDMI, Ethernet, 2x USB 3.0, memory card reader
Right: audio combo jack, 2x USB 2.0, DVD burner, Kensington lock slot
Right: audio combo jack, 2x USB 2.0, DVD burner, Kensington lock slot

Communication

Lenovo installs Broadcom's BCM43142 Wi-Fi module that supports the 802.11 b/g/n standards. Reception was never a problem. The Windows Wi-Fi display always showed 4 to 5 bars in a radius of approximately 15 meters around the router (transmission approx. 50 percent). This is however not a standardized test. The Ideapad's AR8171/8175 Gigabit Ethernet chip comes from Atheros. The laptop also sports a Bluetooth 4.0 module. The built-in webcam shoots blurry pictures in resolutions of up to 1280 x 720 pixels.

Accessories

The laptop comes with the usual documents. Besides a quick start poster, two manuals about safety and warranty information are in the box.

Operating System and Recovery

Windows 8 (64 bit) is installed on the Ideapad. There is no Windows 8 DVD included. As usual for Lenovo, the One Key Recovery System is also on-board. It, for example, allows resetting the laptop to delivery state. The system is opened by pushing the One Key Recovery button (the small key beside the power button) when the laptop is off. The laptop starts, and displays a menu that enables accessing the BIOS, among other things. The option "System Recovery" is selected here. It is easily possible to replace the pre-loaded Windows 8 with Windows 7; drivers for Windows 7, 8, and 8.1 are available on Lenovo's website.

Maintenance

Unlike the smaller Ideapad Z510, the Z710 has a maintenance cover. It enables accessing the working memory, hard drive, Wi-Fi module, BIOS battery, CPU, and fan. The latter can be taken out for cleaning purposes. The Ideapad sports two working memory banks that are both furnished with a four gigabyte module. Replacing the hard drive is simple. 2.5 inch models with a height of 7 and 9.5 mm can be used. Savvy users could also replace the processor.

Warranty

Like both the Asus laptop and the Satellite, the Ideapad comes with a two-year warranty. The Z710's warranty period can  be upgraded to three years for approximately 60 Euros.

Input Devices

Keyboard

Our review sample sports an unlit chiclet keyboard. There are models of the Ideapad Z710 with a backlit keyboard available. The main keys have a size of 15 x 15 mm. Lenovo relies on even, slightly roughened keys. Concave keys are apparently reserved for Thinkpad laptops. Overall, the keys feature a medium drop, and clear pressure point. We very much liked the keys' pleasantly firm resistance. The keyboard wobbled marginally at most while typing on it. This wobbling was only a bit more distinct in the number pad's area, but did not prove adverse. All in all, the keyboard conveyed a good typing feel, and should also satisfy users who have to type regularly.

Touchpad

The mouse replacement is an approximately 10.5 x 7 cm multi-touch ClickPad (a touchpad without dedicated mouse keys; the entire pad is a button). Its sleek surface does not prevent the finger from gliding. The various multi-touch gestures can be turned on and off individually in the pad's setup menu. Not all gestures are enabled by default. The pad features a short drop, and a clearly audible and palpable pressure point.

The keyboard does not feature a backlight.
The keyboard does not feature a backlight.
The touchpad supports multi-touch.
The touchpad supports multi-touch.

Lenovo equips the Ideapad with a glossy, 17.3 inch screen that has a native resolution of 1600 x 900 pixels. The Ideapad is also available with a Full HD screen. The average brightness of 256.6 cd/m² is quite good. Thus, the Ideapad places itself between the Satellite (296.7 cd/m², Full HD), and the F75VC (213.8cd/m², HD+).

269
cd/m²
266
cd/m²
232
cd/m²
253
cd/m²
264
cd/m²
238
cd/m²
267
cd/m²
259
cd/m²
261
cd/m²
Distribution of brightness
Information
X-Rite i1Pro 2
Maximum: 269 cd/m²
Average: 256.6 cd/m²
Brightness Distribution: 86 %
Center on Battery: 264 cd/m²
Black: 0.46 cd/m²
Contrast: 574:1
Ideapad Z710 vs. sRGB
Ideapad Z710 vs. sRGB
Ideapad Z710 vs. AdobeRGB
Ideapad Z710 vs. AdobeRGB

The contrast of 574:1, and black level of 0.46 cd/m² are very good, and are on par with the rates of the Satellite (587:1; 0.54 cd/m²). The F75VC (236:1; 0.95 cd/m²) cannot compete with its contenders. A look at color space reproduction shows that the Ideapad's screen cannot cover either the sRGB or the AdobeRGB color space. These rates are significant for professional image editing, for example. sRGB is covered by 65.8 percent, and AdobeRGB has a coverage rate of 48.8 percent.

The screen's average DeltaE 2000 shift achieves a rate of 9.88 in delivery state, and is thus on par with most screens that we have assessed. Only yellow achieves the target range of DeltaE smaller than 3. The screen exhibits a bluish cast.

CalMAN - Color Checker
CalMAN - Color Checker
CalMAN - Grayscale
CalMAN - Grayscale
CalMAN - Saturation Sweeps
CalMAN - Saturation Sweeps

The brightness and contrast throughout allow outdoor use. However, the screen has to always be positioned in a way that prevents reflections.

The viewing angle stability is within the usual range. The image quickly distorts when the screen's vertical viewing angle is altered. It is better horizontally, and several people can look at the screen at the same time.

The Ideapad Z710 outdoors
The Ideapad Z710 outdoors
Viewing angles: Ideapad Z710
Viewing angles: Ideapad Z710

Performance

Lenovo's Ideapad Z710 line provides a range of all-round laptops in a 17.3 inch size. In addition to everyday tasks, such as office, Skype, and video playback, computer games are no challenge for the different Z710 models. Our review sample is currently sold for approximately 700 Euros. There are various other models available. They differ in screen resolution, processor, graphics core, hard drive, working memory, and operating system.

CPU-Z
CPU-Z
CPU-Z
CPU-Z
CPU-Z
GPU-Z
GPU-Z
HWInfo
System information: Lenovo IdeaPad Z710 59393211

Processor

Lenovo installs a Core i5 4200M processor in the Ideapad. The dual-core is based on Intel's latest Haswell architecture. It works with a base clock of 2.5 GHz, and its speed can be boosted up to 3 GHz (both cores) or 3.1 GHz (one core only) via Turbo. The equally clocked precursor's name is Core i5 3210M (Ivy Bridge). The Core i5 4200M should achieve better 10 percent computing results owing to the improvements in Haswell. Both processors are standard mobile processors (not ULV). The Core i5 4200M's TDP of 37 watts is 2 watts higher than its precursor's.

The Ideapad's processor ran the Cinebench single-thread benchmarks with 3 GHz. One core was occasionally boosted to 3.1 GHz. The multi-thread tests ran stably at 3 GHz. Naturally, the Satellite's (Core i7 4700MQ, GeForce GT 740M) results are better. Its Core i7 clocks with somewhat higher Turbo speeds, and it also has four processor cores. The F75VC (Core i3 2370M, GeForce GT 720M) clearly lags behind its contenders. The Core i3 processor in Asus' laptop does not feature Turbo, and consequently clocks with considerably lower speeds. It also comes from Intel's second last processor generation (Sandy Bridge), and thus has less computing performance per MHz. The F75VC model that we mentioned in the intro, i.e. Asus F75VB-TY049H, should accomplish quite identical results as the Ideapad. The Core i5 3230M processor (Ivy Bridge) clocks with somewhat higher speeds, and should thus compensate the Core i5 4200M's Haswell improvements.

Cinebench R10 Rendering Single CPUs 64Bit
5856 Points
Cinebench R10 Rendering Multiple CPUs 32Bit
10125
Cinebench R10 Rendering Single 32Bit
4539
Cinebench R10 Shading 32Bit
6722
Cinebench R10 Shading 64Bit
6679 Points
Cinebench R10 Rendering Multiple CPUs 64Bit
11710 Points
Cinebench R11.5 CPU Single 64Bit
1.37 Points
Cinebench R11.5 CPU Multi 64Bit
3.24 Points
Cinebench R11.5 OpenGL 64Bit
41.45 fps
Cinebench R15 CPU Multi 64Bit
301 Points
Cinebench R15 OpenGL 64Bit
53.57 fps
Cinebench R15 CPU Single 64Bit
122 Points
Cinebench R15 Ref. Match 64Bit
99.6 %
Help
Cinebench R11.5 - CPU Single 64Bit (sort by value)
Lenovo IdeaPad Z710 59393211
GeForce GT 740M, 4200M, Seagate ST500LM000 Solid State Hybrid Drive
1.37 Points ∼50%
Dell Inspiron 7737 CN77304
GeForce GT 750M, 4500U, Seagate Momentus SpinPoint M8 ST1000LM024 HN-M101MBB
0.79 Points ∼29% -42%
HP Pavilion 17-e054sg
Radeon HD 8650G + HD 8670M Dual Graphics, A10-5750M, Toshiba MQ01ABD100
0.88 Points ∼32% -36%
Asus F75VC-TY088H
GeForce GT 720M, 2370M, Hitachi Travelstar Z5K500 HTS545050A7E380
0.96 Points ∼35% -30%
Acer Aspire V3-772G-747A321
GeForce GTX 760M, 4702MQ, Toshiba MQ01ABD100
1.42 Points ∼52% +4%
Lenovo G710 59397112
GeForce GT 720M, 4702MQ, Seagate Momentus SpinPoint M8 ST1000LM024 HN-M101MBB
1.44 Points ∼52% +5%
Lenovo IdeaPad Z710 59-395117
GeForce GT 745M, 4702MQ, Seagate ST1000LM014 Solid State Hybrid Drive
1.44 Points ∼52% +5%
Toshiba Satellite L70-A-10T
GeForce GT 740M, 4700MQ, HGST Travelstar 5K1000 HTS541075A9E680
1.54 Points ∼56% +12%
Cinebench R11.5 - CPU Multi 64Bit (sort by value)
Lenovo IdeaPad Z710 59393211
GeForce GT 740M, 4200M, Seagate ST500LM000 Solid State Hybrid Drive
3.24 Points ∼18%
Dell Inspiron 7737 CN77304
GeForce GT 750M, 4500U, Seagate Momentus SpinPoint M8 ST1000LM024 HN-M101MBB
1.99 Points ∼11% -39%
HP Pavilion 17-e054sg
Radeon HD 8650G + HD 8670M Dual Graphics, A10-5750M, Toshiba MQ01ABD100
2.25 Points ∼13% -31%
Asus F75VC-TY088H
GeForce GT 720M, 2370M, Hitachi Travelstar Z5K500 HTS545050A7E380
2.29 Points ∼13% -29%
Lenovo IdeaPad Z710 59-395117
GeForce GT 745M, 4702MQ, Seagate ST1000LM014 Solid State Hybrid Drive
6.33 Points ∼36% +95%
Lenovo G710 59397112
GeForce GT 720M, 4702MQ, Seagate Momentus SpinPoint M8 ST1000LM024 HN-M101MBB
6.35 Points ∼36% +96%
Acer Aspire V3-772G-747A321
GeForce GTX 760M, 4702MQ, Toshiba MQ01ABD100
6.36 Points ∼36% +96%
Toshiba Satellite L70-A-10T
GeForce GT 740M, 4700MQ, HGST Travelstar 5K1000 HTS541075A9E680
6.5 Points ∼37% +101%

System Performance

The system's overall performance does not give reason for complaint. It works smoothly and without glitches. Windows 8 boots quite fast, and the PCMark benchmark scores are correspondingly good. The Ideapad delivers better scores than both the F75VC (Core i3 2370M, GeForce GT 720M) and Satellite (Core i7 4700MQ, GeForce GT 740M). The Satellite is outperformed although it sports a stronger processor. The Ideapad benefits from its hybrid hard drive here (= hard drive with integrated SSD cache).

The system performance could be improved even more by installing a solid state drive. Windows would boot faster, and the system would be speedier. The PCMark scores would also improve. We tested this using our Crucial RealSSD C300 - 64 GB, which increased the Ideapad's PCMark 7 score by about 33 percent to 5197 points.

PC Mark
PCMark Vantage7728 points
PCMark 73910 points
PCMark 8 Home v22749 points
PCMark 8 Creative v23191 points
PCMark 8 Work v23185 points
Help
PCMark 7 - Score (sort by value)
Lenovo IdeaPad Z710 59393211
GeForce GT 740M, 4200M, Seagate ST500LM000 Solid State Hybrid Drive
3910 Points ∼59%
HP Pavilion 17-e054sg
Radeon HD 8650G + HD 8670M Dual Graphics, A10-5750M, Toshiba MQ01ABD100
2122 Points ∼32% -46%
Asus F75VC-TY088H
GeForce GT 720M, 2370M, Hitachi Travelstar Z5K500 HTS545050A7E380
2130 Points ∼32% -46%
Dell Inspiron 7737 CN77304
GeForce GT 750M, 4500U, Seagate Momentus SpinPoint M8 ST1000LM024 HN-M101MBB
2715 Points ∼41% -31%
Toshiba Satellite L70-A-10T
GeForce GT 740M, 4700MQ, HGST Travelstar 5K1000 HTS541075A9E680
3294 Points ∼50% -16%
Lenovo G710 59397112
GeForce GT 720M, 4702MQ, Seagate Momentus SpinPoint M8 ST1000LM024 HN-M101MBB
3310 Points ∼50% -15%
Acer Aspire V3-772G-747A321
GeForce GTX 760M, 4702MQ, Toshiba MQ01ABD100
5650 Points ∼85% +45%

Storage Devices

HD Tune
HD Tune
CrystalDiskMark
CrystalDiskMark

Lenovo installs a hybrid hard drive from Seagate. It has a capacity of 500 GB, and spins with 5400 revolutions per minute. It also sports an 8 GB SSD cache. It enables accessing data frequently used by the operating system faster. CrystalDiskMark recorded a read speed of 94.61 MB/s. HDTune delivered an average transfer rate of 84.1 MB/s. Those are both good rates for a 5400 rpm hard drive. The access time of 1.2 ms is much too good for a conventional hard drive. HDTune apparently recorded the cache's access time.

Seagate ST500LM000 Solid State Hybrid Drive
Transfer Rate Minimum: 10.6 MB/s
Transfer Rate Maximum: 105.6 MB/s
Transfer Rate Average: 84.1 MB/s
Access Time: 1.2 ms
Burst Rate: 151.4 MB/s
CPU Usage: 3.8 %

Graphics Card

Two graphics cores operate in the Ideapad: Intel's HD Graphics 4600 GPU and the GeForce GT 740M graphics core. They are both intended for different tasks. The GeForce chip takes care of applications with high graphics requirements, such as computer games. The low-consumption Intel core is used for routine tasks, and in battery mode. Both cores support DirectX 11 at a minimum. The GeForce graphics core belongs to the GPU mid-range. Its base speed is 980 MHz, which can be increased to 1058 MHz via Turbo.

The Ideapad and Satellite (Core i7 4700QM, GeForce GT 740M) both sport the same GPU. Consequently, the 3DMark benchmarks scores should be the same. That is true in the tests where the CPU does not have much influence on the score, for example in 3DMark 2011 or 3DMark Fire Strike. The Satellite benefits from its stronger processor in the other 3DMark editions. The F75VC (Core i3 2370M, GeForce GT 720M) naturally cannot keep up with either contender because it sports a weaker graphics core.

On the whole, both the Ideapad and Satellite lag behind their possibilities. Their GPUs are only connected to their graphics memory via a 64 bit line. The scores of, for example, the Asus N56VB-S4050H (Core i7 3630QM, GeForce GT 740M) show how the 3DMark benchmarks could be when connected via a 128 bit bus.

3D Mark
3DMark 06
 1280x1024
9624 points
3DMark Vantage6239 points
3DMark 111929 points
3DMark Ice Storm65458 points
3DMark Cloud Gate5651 points
3DMark Fire Strike1062 points
Help
3DMark 11 - 1280x720 Performance (sort by value)
Lenovo IdeaPad Z710 59393211
GeForce GT 740M, 4200M, Seagate ST500LM000 Solid State Hybrid Drive
1929 Points ∼15%
Asus F75VC-TY088H
GeForce GT 720M, 2370M, Hitachi Travelstar Z5K500 HTS545050A7E380
1210 Points ∼9% -37%
Toshiba Satellite L70-A-10T
GeForce GT 740M, 4700MQ, HGST Travelstar 5K1000 HTS541075A9E680
1969 Points ∼15% +2%
Asus N56VB-S4050H
GeForce GT 740M, 3630QM, WDC Scorpio Blue WD7500BPVT-80HXZT3
2238 Points ∼17% +16%
Lenovo IdeaPad Z710 59-395117
GeForce GT 745M, 4702MQ, Seagate ST1000LM014 Solid State Hybrid Drive
2542 Points ∼19% +32%
Acer Aspire V3-772G-747A321
GeForce GTX 760M, 4702MQ, Toshiba MQ01ABD100
3515 Points ∼27% +82%
3DMark (2013) - 1920x1080 Fire Strike Standard Score (sort by value)
Lenovo IdeaPad Z710 59393211
GeForce GT 740M, 4200M, Seagate ST500LM000 Solid State Hybrid Drive
1062 Points ∼11%
Asus F75VC-TY088H
GeForce GT 720M, 2370M, Hitachi Travelstar Z5K500 HTS545050A7E380
668 Points ∼7% -37%
Toshiba Satellite L70-A-10T
GeForce GT 740M, 4700MQ, HGST Travelstar 5K1000 HTS541075A9E680
1076 Points ∼11% +1%
Asus N56VB-S4050H
GeForce GT 740M, 3630QM, WDC Scorpio Blue WD7500BPVT-80HXZT3
1269 Points ∼13% +19%
Lenovo IdeaPad Z710 59-395117
GeForce GT 745M, 4702MQ, Seagate ST1000LM014 Solid State Hybrid Drive
1537 Points ∼15% +45%
Acer Aspire V3-772G-747A321
GeForce GTX 760M, 4702MQ, Toshiba MQ01ABD100
1971 Points ∼20% +86%

Gaming Performance

The Ideapad can render most current computer games in an HD resolution (1366 x 768 pixels), and medium quality settings smoothly. Games that do not have a very high hardware requirement should still be playable even using higher quality settings. This, for example, applies to the various editions of the Fifa series. Like in the 3DMark benchmarks, the Ideapad lags behind its potentials because it is only linked to its graphics memory via a 64 bit bus. Again, the comparison with the Asus N56VB-S4050H proves that a 128 bit bus enables considerably better frame rates.

The Z710 models with a GeForce GT 745M graphics core offer a somewhat higher gaming performance. For example, the Ideapad Z710 59400135 with a Full HD screen, 8 GB of working memory, and a 1 TB hard drive for approximately 800 Euros. Acer's Aspire V3-772G (Core i7 4702MQ, GeForce GTX 760M) can boast with considerably more gaming power. The price of the model we tested is clearly over 1000 Euros. However, less expensive models are also available, e.g. the V3-772G-54204G50Makk with a Core i5 4200M, GeForce GTX 760M, and matte Full HD screen, but without a Windows operating system, is sold for just under 700 Euros.

low med.high ultra
Dirt 3 (2011) 92.756.2fps
The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim (2011) 51.335.825.4fps
Anno 2070 (2011) 116.951.230.8fps
Torchlight 2 (2012) 87.452.1fps
Tomb Raider (2013) 90.94323.8fps
BioShock Infinite (2013) 69.937.931.5fps
Batman: Arkham Origins (2013) 834722fps
Tomb Raider - 1366x768 Normal Preset AA:FX AF:4x (sort by value)
Lenovo IdeaPad Z710 59393211
GeForce GT 740M, 4200M, Seagate ST500LM000 Solid State Hybrid Drive
43 fps ∼11%
Asus F75VC-TY088H
GeForce GT 720M, 2370M, Hitachi Travelstar Z5K500 HTS545050A7E380
31.1 fps ∼8% -28%
Toshiba Satellite L70-A-10T
GeForce GT 740M, 4700MQ, HGST Travelstar 5K1000 HTS541075A9E680
43.8 fps ∼11% +2%
Asus N56VB-S4050H
GeForce GT 740M, 3630QM, WDC Scorpio Blue WD7500BPVT-80HXZT3
57.9 fps ∼15% +35%
Acer Aspire V3-772G-747A321
GeForce GTX 760M, 4702MQ, Toshiba MQ01ABD100
99 fps ∼25% +130%
Anno 2070 - 1366x768 Medium Preset AA:on (sort by value)
Lenovo IdeaPad Z710 59393211
GeForce GT 740M, 4200M, Seagate ST500LM000 Solid State Hybrid Drive
51.2 fps ∼21%
Asus F75VC-TY088H
GeForce GT 720M, 2370M, Hitachi Travelstar Z5K500 HTS545050A7E380
36.2 fps ∼15% -29%
Toshiba Satellite L70-A-10T
GeForce GT 740M, 4700MQ, HGST Travelstar 5K1000 HTS541075A9E680
46.8 fps ∼19% -9%
Acer Aspire V3-772G-747A321
GeForce GTX 760M, 4702MQ, Toshiba MQ01ABD100
59 fps ∼25% +15%
Lenovo IdeaPad Z710 59-395117
GeForce GT 745M, 4702MQ, Seagate ST1000LM014 Solid State Hybrid Drive
59.9 fps ∼25% +17%

Emissions

System Noise

The Ideapad's virtually silent idle operating noise is praiseworthy. Only the fan's permanent, quiet noise is heard. Correspondingly, the noise level ranges between 31.2 and 31.4 dB. The F75VC (30.5 to 32.1 dB) is roughly on par with that. The Satellite (32.1 to 33.9 dB) offers slightly worse rates. The Ideapad's noise only increases marginally to 33.2 dB during medium load via 3DMark 06, and 34.9 dB during full load in the stress test via Prime95 and Furmark. The Satellite (32.5 and 36.6 dB) serves with identical rates, and the Asus laptop is considerably louder (38.9 and 42.3 dB).

Noise Level

Idle 31.2 / 31.2 / 31.3 dB(A)
HDD 31.4 dB(A)
DVD 35 / dB(A)
Load 33.2 / 34.9 dB(A)
 
    30 dB
silent
40 dB
audible
50 dB
loud
 
min: , med: , max:    Voltcraft sl-320 (15 cm distance)

Temperature

The Ideapad Z710 in the stress test.
The Ideapad Z710 in the stress test.

The temperatures of the three comparison devices barely increased in idle mode. All three laptops are within an acceptable range. This did not change when the Ideapad was under load; its temperatures only climbed moderately. We measured a maximum of 36.2 degrees Celsius. The Satellite heats up a bit more, and surpasses fifty degrees Celsius at one measuring point. The F75VC ranges between both laptops.

The CPU processed the stress test (Prime95 and Furmark run for at least one hour) with its base speed of 2.5 GHz in both battery and AC mode; the Turbo was unused. The GPU ran the stress at full speed (1058 MHz) in AC mode. It was throttled to 614 MHz in battery mode. Our stress test simulates an extreme scenario that is not achieved to this extent in routine use. Although the CPU did not use its Turbo during the stress test, it is used in everyday use. The benchmarks that we performed proved that. The CPU's temperature settled to approximately 70 degrees Celsius during the stress test in AC mode.

Max. Load
 34.4 °C30.2 °C24 °C 
 33 °C31.6 °C24.1 °C 
 28.2 °C29.1 °C27.6 °C 
Maximum: 34.4 °C
Average: 29.1 °C
24 °C29.3 °C36.2 °C
24.4 °C34.8 °C34 °C
28.8 °C27.4 °C27.6 °C
Maximum: 36.2 °C
Average: 29.6 °C
Power Supply (max.)  43 °C | Room Temperature 22.6 °C | Voltcraft IR-360

Speakers

The Ideapad's stereo speakers are located above the keyboard behind a perforated cover. The produce a rich sound that however lacks bass. Speech is well-intelligible. Overall, Lenovo supplies a good pair of speakers here. A better sound can be achieved with external speakers or headphones.

Energy Management

Power Consumption

The Ideapad consumes between 6.1 and 10.7 watts when idling. These rates are more than good for a high-performance, 17.3 inch laptop. The Satellite treats itself to too much energy (5.5 to 15 watts), and the F75VC (8.3 to 12.9 watts) places itself between both contenders. The Ideapad's power requirement climbs to 52.5 watts in medium load via 3DMark 06, and to 61.5 watts during full load in the stress test via Prime95 and Furmark. The Satellite's rates (38.3 and 50 watts) are clearly below that. The reason for this is soon found: The Satellite cannot completely nor permanently max out its CPU Turbo when the GPU is loaded at the same time. The rates of the F75VC (57.1 and 69.7 watts) are slightly higher than the Ideapad's because the Z710's Haswell processor does not need as much energy as the Sandy Bridge processor in the F75VC.

Power Consumption

Off / Standby 0.1 / 0.3 Watt
Idle 6.1 / 10.1 / 10.7 Watt
Load 52.5 / 61.5 Watt
 
Key: min: , med: , max:         Voltcraft VC 940

Battery Runtime

The Ideapad shut down after 6:24 h of idling. Both the Satellite (8:02 h) and the F75VC (6:56 h) last longer. The idle runtime is ascertained using BatteryEater's Reader's test. The screen is set to minimum brightness, the energy-saving profile is enabled, and the wireless modules are off. The Z710 lasted for 1:01 h during load. It places itself between the Satellite (0:43 h) and the F75VC (1:17 h) with that. Load operation is tested using BatteryEater's Classic test. The screen is set to maximum brightness, the high-performance profile is enabled, and the wireless modules are on.

The Ideapad finished the Wi-Fi test after 2:44 h. Again, it lags behind both the Satellite (3:30 h) and F75VC (3:49 h). Websites are opened every 40 seconds, the energy-saving profile is enabled, and the screen's brightness is set to approx. 150 cd/m² for this test. The Ideapad played a DVD for 2:20 h. Once again, the F75VC (3:01 h) and the Satellite (2:29 h) last longer. The DVD test is performed using enabled energy-saving profile (or a higher profile should the DVD not run smoothly), maximum screen brightness, and disabled wireless modules.

On the whole, the Z710's runtimes are not exceptional, but acceptable. Both contenders usually last longer because they sport batteries with slightly higher capacities (Lenovo: 41 Wh; Asus: 47 Wh; Toshiba: 48 Wh).

Battery Runtime
Idle (without WLAN, min brightness)
6h 24min
WiFi Surfing
2h 44min
DVD
2h 20min
Load (maximum brightness)
1h 01min

Verdict

Lenovo Ideapad Z710
Lenovo Ideapad Z710

Lenovo's Ideapad Z710 scores with a decent application and gaming performance. The user is not distracted by an unduly high noise development during use either. The user-friendly maintenance and upgrade options are also praiseworthy, and the good keyboard is just as compelling. The screen's rates are overall very good, but also only good in some places. Unfortunately, Lenovo uses a glare-type screen that additionally exhibits a bluish cast. A matte screen would look better in the laptop. The Ideapad cannot serve with exceptional battery runtimes, but that is only secondary in a 17.3 inch all-rounder. On the whole, Lenovo delivers a decent all-round laptop that does not have any serious shortcomings.

In our opinion, Toshiba's Satellite L70-A-10T is generally inferior to the Ideapad. Although the Satellite model we tested features a stronger processor, and Full HD screen, it costs 100 to 200 Euros more. The Ideapad is available with virtually the same equipment for an identical price. This nullifies the performance differences, and the Ideapad can still boast with a better keyboard, better maintenance options, and a lower operating noise.

Asus' F75VC lower price makes it more interesting than the either the Ideapad or Satellite. The Asus F75VB-TY041D configuration is currently available for 555 Euros with a Core i5 3230M processor, GeForce GT 740M graphics core, 4 GB of working memory, and a 500 GB hard drive. However, it does not include a Windows operating system.

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Lenovo Ideapad Z710 59393211, courtesy of:
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Specifications

Lenovo IdeaPad Z710 59393211

:: Processor
:: Mainboard
Intel HM86 (Lynx Point)
:: Memory
8192 MB, DDR3, dual-channel, two memory banks (both filled)
:: Graphics adapter
NVIDIA GeForce GT 740M - 2048 MB, Core: 980-1058 MHz, Memory: 900 MHz, ForceWare 332.21, Optimus
:: Display
17.3 inch 16:9, 1600x900 pixel, AU Optronics B173RW01 V5, TN LED, glossy: yes
:: Harddisk
Seagate ST500LM000 Solid State Hybrid Drive, 500 GB 5400 rpm , 420 GB free
:: Soundcard
Intel Lynx Point PCH - High Definition Audio Controller
:: Connections
2 USB 2.0, 2 USB 3.0, 1 Firewire, 1 VGA, 1 HDMI, 1 Kensington Lock, Audio Connections: combo audio jack, Card Reader: SD, MMC,
:: Networking
Qualcomm Atheros AR8171/8175 PCI-E Gigabit Ethernet (10/100/1000MBit), Broadcom BCM43142 (b g n ), 4.0 Bluetooth
:: Optical drive
PLDS DVD-RW DU8A5SH
:: Size
height x width x depth (in mm): 32.5 x 414 x 270
:: Weight
2.9 kg Power Supply: 0.345 kg
:: Battery
41 Wh Lithium-Ion, 14.88 V, 2800 mAh
:: Price
699 Euro
:: Operating System
Microsoft Windows 8 64 Bit
:: Additional features
Webcam: 1280x720 (HD 720p), Speakers: stereo, Keyboard: chiclet, Keyboard Light: no, Cyberlink PowerDVD 10, Cyberlink YouCam, Cyberlink Power2Go, McAfee Internet Security (trial), Microsoft Office 365 (trial), 24 Months Warranty

 

The DVD burner reads and writes all kinds of DVDs and CDs.
The DVD burner reads and writes all kinds of DVDs and CDs.
A number pad is installed.
A number pad is installed.
The hinges...
The hinges...
...keep the lid firmly in position.
...keep the lid firmly in position.
The hardware can be accessed easily.
The hardware can be accessed easily.
There are two working memory banks.
There are two working memory banks.
The hard drive can be replaced.
The hard drive can be replaced.
The fan can be taken out for cleaning.
The fan can be taken out for cleaning.
It is possible to replace the processor.
It is possible to replace the processor.
Good: Two Wi-Fi antennas are installed.
Good: Two Wi-Fi antennas are installed.
The BIOS battery could be replaced.
The BIOS battery could be replaced.
The battery weighs approximately 226 grams...
The battery weighs approximately 226 grams...
...and has a capacity of 41 Wh.
...and has a capacity of 41 Wh.
The power supply has a weight of almost 345 grams...
The power supply has a weight of almost 345 grams...
...and supplies an output power of 90 watts.
...and supplies an output power of 90 watts.
The speakers' are located above the keyboard.
The speakers' are located above the keyboard.
The Ideapad outdoors.
The Ideapad outdoors.

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Pro

+Decent application performance
+Gaming suitable
+Convenient maintenance options
+Always quiet operating
+Barely heats up
+Bright, high-contrast screen
+Good keyboard
 

Cons

-Screen's bluish cast
-Middling battery runtimes

Shortcut

What we like

The decent application and gaming performance, and the low operating noise. The maintenance options are also compelling.

What we'd like to see

A matte screen.

What surprises us

The laptop silent operating noise, despite the high-performance components. We would like to see this behavior in most future laptops.

The competition

Toshiba Satellite L70-A-10T, Asus F75VC-TY088H, Lenovo G710, HP Envy 17-j110eg Leap Motion, HP ProBook 470 G0, MSI CX70-i740M281W7H, Aspire Aspire V3-772G, Acer Aspire V3-771G, Toshiba Satellite S70-A-10F, HP Envy 17t-j003, Asus K75DE, HP Pavilion 17-e054sg

Rating

Lenovo IdeaPad Z710 59393211
04/15/2014 v4
Sascha Mölck

Chassis
70 / 98 → 71%
Keyboard
73%
Pointing Device
72%
Connectivity
61 / 95 → 64%
Weight
57 / 67 → 79%
Battery
74%
Display
70%
Games Performance
78 / 93 → 84%
Application Performance
80%
Temperature
92%
Noise
94 / 95 → 99%
Audio
60%
Camera
38 / 85 → 45%
Average
71%
76%
Multimedia *
Weighted Average

> Notebook / Laptop Reviews and News > Reviews > Review Lenovo IdeaPad Z710 59393211 Notebook
Author: Sascha Mölck, 2014-01-29 (Update: 2014-01-31)