Notebookcheck

Lenovo Legion Y520-15IKBA (i5-7300HQ, RX 560) Laptop Review

Mike Wobker, 👁 Sebastian Jentsch, Felicitas Krohn (translated by Alex Alderson), 05/23/2018

Budget Gaming. Lenovo’s budget-priced gaming notebooks start at €700 (~$817). While these basic variants are not that powerful, they should still be enough for some gamers. In this review, we will be looking at the Lenovo Legion Y520-15IKBA, a 15.6-inch notebook that is equipped with an Intel Core i5-7300HQ processor and an AMD Radeon RX 560 dedicated graphics card.

In this review, we will be examining the Legion Y520-15IKBA, which is currently available for around €700 (~$817).

This gets you an Intel Core i5-7300HQ processor, an AMD Radeon RX 560 GPU, 8 GB of RAM and a 1 TB HDD. Without a doubt, this configuration will be sufficient for most games. However, we expect that the HDD will cause longer load times and lower system performance than if Lenovo had equipped the device with an SSD.

We have already covered some of Lenovo’s gaming laptops, including the Lenovo Legion Y720, which excelled in our tests. The mid-range gaming notebook combined decent performance with a well-designed case and 4K capabilities. The Lenovo Y520 series is for those who are not as concerned by gaming at the cutting edge. The Y520 has more moderate styling and is far more competitively priced.

Likewise, we have already tested the Lenovo Legion Y520-15IKBN, a notebook that performed strongly in our tests thanks to its Intel Core i7-7700HQ processor and NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 Ti GPU. The Y520-15IKBN showed that a sub €1000 (~$1167) device can compete with other gaming laptops. 

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Lenovo Legion Y520-15IKBA-80WY001VGE (Legion Y520 Series)
Graphics adapter
AMD Radeon RX 560 (Laptop) - 2048 MB, Core: 1200 MHz, Memory: 1500 MHz, GDDR5, 22.19.128.0 (Crimson 17.7) WHQL / Win10 64
Memory
8192 MB 
, DDR4
Display
15.6 inch 16:9, 1920 x 1080 pixel 141 PPI, LG Philips LGD0533, IPS, glossy: no
Mainboard
Intel HM175
Storage
Seagate Mobile HDD 1TB ST1000LM035, 1024 GB 
, 5400 RPM, 850 GB free
Soundcard
Intel Skylake PCH-H High Definition Audio Controller
Connections
1 USB 2.0, 3 USB 3.0 / 3.1 Gen1, 1 HDMI, 1 Kensington Lock, Audio Connections: Combined headphone and microphone 3.5 mm jack, Card Reader: SD
Networking
Realtek RTL8168/8111 Gigabit-LAN (10/100/1000/2500/5000MBit/s), Intel Dual Band Wireless-AC 3165 (a/b/g/n = Wi-Fi 4/ac = Wi-Fi 5), Bluetooth 4.2
Size
height x width x depth (in mm): 26 x 360 x 267 ( = 1.02 x 14.17 x 10.51 in)
Battery
45 Wh Lithium-Polymer
Camera
Webcam: 720p, HD, 1MP
Additional features
Speakers: Stereo, Keyboard: Chiclet, Keyboard Light: no, Lenovo Vantage, Lenovo Nerve Sense, Lenovo Settings, McAfee, 24 Months Warranty
Weight
2.5 kg ( = 88.19 oz / 5.51 pounds), Power Supply: 540 g ( = 19.05 oz / 1.19 pounds)
Price
719 Euro
Note: The manufacturer may use components from different suppliers including display panels, drives or memory sticks with similar specifications.

 

Case

We shall not be examining the Y520-15IKBA’s case as it looks identical to its Y520 sibling. Check out our Lenovo Legion Y520-15IKBN review for a detailed look of the case design.

The weight and footprint is the same as the Y520-15IKBN too. The Y520-15IKBA is lighter and compacter than many other gaming notebooks.

Size Comparison

415 mm / 16.3 inch 280 mm / 11 inch 34 mm / 1.339 inch 3.2 kg7.05 lbs389 mm / 15.3 inch 274.7 mm / 10.8 inch 24.95 mm / 0.982 inch 2.9 kg6.3 lbs378 mm / 14.9 inch 267 mm / 10.5 inch 30 mm / 1.181 inch 2.8 kg6.15 lbs360 mm / 14.2 inch 267 mm / 10.5 inch 26 mm / 1.024 inch 2.5 kg5.51 lbs330 mm / 13 inch 269 mm / 10.6 inch 22 mm / 0.866 inch 2.5 kg5.4 lbs

Connectivity

The connectivity is also unchanged. The Y520-IKBA has a large selection of ports, a highlight of which is the USB 3.1 Type-C Gen 1 port. This gives the Y520-15IKBA an element of future proofing as more accessories and devices are released with USB Type-C. The other ports are sufficient for everyday gaming or, for example, at a LAN party.

Front: no ports
Front: no ports
Rear: no ports
Rear: no ports
Left-hand side: Kensington Lock slot, power connector, Gigabit Ethernet, USB 2.0 Type-A, 3.5 mm jack, Lenovo OneKey Recovery
Left-hand side: Kensington Lock slot, power connector, Gigabit Ethernet, USB 2.0 Type-A, 3.5 mm jack, Lenovo OneKey Recovery
Right-hand side: USB 3.1 Type-C Gen 1, SD Card Reader, USB 3.0 Type-A x2, HDMI
Right-hand side: USB 3.1 Type-C Gen 1, SD Card Reader, USB 3.0 Type-A x2, HDMI

SD Card Reader

We benchmark the SD card readers in all our devices with a Toshiba Exceria Pro SDXC 64 GB UHS-II. The Y520-15IKBA has a mediocre SD card reader that is around 30% slower than the class average for gaming notebooks. However, the level of SD card performance is acceptable at this price point as the Y520-15IKBA performed just as well as comparable devices like the Schenker XMG Apex 15. The biggest drawback of the Y520-15IKBA’s SD card reader is its size, namely its depth. Frustratingly, SD cards protrude by around 1.5 cm (~0.6 in) from the edge of the case.

SDCardreader Transfer Speed
average JPG Copy Test (av. of 3 runs)
Average of class Gaming
  (11.7 - 202, n=244)
93 MB/s ∼100% +39%
Schenker XMG Apex 15
  (Toshiba Exceria Pro SDXC 64 GB UHS-II)
83 MB/s ∼89% +24%
Lenovo Legion Y520-15IKBN-80WK001KUS
  (Toshiba Exceria Pro SDXC 64 GB UHS-II)
74.74 MB/s ∼80% +11%
Lenovo Legion Y520-15IKBA-80WY001VGE
  (Toshiba Exceria Pro SDXC 64 GB UHS-II)
67.1 MB/s ∼72%
Asus ROG Strix GL702ZC-GC204T
  (Toshiba Exceria Pro SDXC 64 GB UHS-II)
58 MB/s ∼62% -14%
Dell Inspiron 15 7000 7577 4K
  (Toshiba Exceria Pro SDXC 64 GB UHS-II)
29.77 MB/s ∼32% -56%
maximum AS SSD Seq Read Test (1GB)
Average of class Gaming
  (13.4 - 257, n=242)
111 MB/s ∼100% +30%
Asus ROG Strix GL702ZC-GC204T
  (Toshiba Exceria Pro SDXC 64 GB UHS-II)
91 MB/s ∼82% +7%
Lenovo Legion Y520-15IKBN-80WK001KUS
  (Toshiba Exceria Pro SDXC 64 GB UHS-II)
89.74 MB/s ∼81% +5%
Schenker XMG Apex 15
  (Toshiba Exceria Pro SDXC 64 GB UHS-II)
88 MB/s ∼79% +3%
Lenovo Legion Y520-15IKBA-80WY001VGE
  (Toshiba Exceria Pro SDXC 64 GB UHS-II)
85.3 MB/s ∼77%
Dell Inspiron 15 7000 7577 4K
  (Toshiba Exceria Pro SDXC 64 GB UHS-II)
30.97 MB/s ∼28% -64%

Communication

The Y520-15IKBA is equipped with a relatively slow Wi-Fi module. While the Legion Y720 achieves a transfer rate of up to 660 Mbps, the Y520-15IKBA only manages a measly 300 Mbps, which is more than 50% slower. Likewise, the Y520-15IKBA trails its Y520 sibling by around 50 Mbps. Despite these lackluster results, the Wi-Fi connection is still fast in everyday use, with the Y520-15IKBA able to use 802.11 ac Wi-Fi on 5 GHz networks.

Networking
iperf3 Client (receive) TCP 1 m 4M x10
Schenker XMG Apex 15
Intel Dual Band Wireless-AC 8265
672 MBit/s ∼100% +122%
Dell Inspiron 15 7000 7577 4K
Intel Dual Band Wireless-AC 8265
648 MBit/s ∼96% +114%
Asus ROG Strix GL702ZC-GC204T
Realtek 8822BE Wireless LAN 802.11ac PCI-E NIC
632 MBit/s ∼94% +109%
Alienware 13 R3 (i5-7300HQ, GTX 1050 Ti)
Killer Wireless-n/a/ac 1535 Wireless Network Adapter
626 MBit/s ∼93% +107%
Average of class Gaming
  (141 - 702, n=264)
605 MBit/s ∼90% +100%
Lenovo Legion Y520-15IKBN-80WK001KUS
Realtek 8821AE Wireless LAN 802.11ac PCI-E NIC
307 MBit/s ∼46% +1%
Lenovo Legion Y520-15IKBA-80WY001VGE
Intel Dual Band Wireless-AC 3165
303 MBit/s ∼45%
iperf3 Client (transmit) TCP 1 m 4M x10
Asus ROG Strix GL702ZC-GC204T
Realtek 8822BE Wireless LAN 802.11ac PCI-E NIC
670 MBit/s ∼100% +176%
Alienware 13 R3 (i5-7300HQ, GTX 1050 Ti)
Killer Wireless-n/a/ac 1535 Wireless Network Adapter
561 MBit/s ∼84% +131%
Average of class Gaming
  (144 - 749, n=264)
560 MBit/s ∼84% +130%
Dell Inspiron 15 7000 7577 4K
Intel Dual Band Wireless-AC 8265
532 MBit/s ∼79% +119%
Schenker XMG Apex 15
Intel Dual Band Wireless-AC 8265
499 MBit/s ∼74% +105%
Lenovo Legion Y520-15IKBN-80WK001KUS
Realtek 8821AE Wireless LAN 802.11ac PCI-E NIC
282 MBit/s ∼42% +16%
Lenovo Legion Y520-15IKBA-80WY001VGE
Intel Dual Band Wireless-AC 3165
243 MBit/s ∼36%

Accessories

Lenovo includes a 135-W power supply in the box, but does not offer any accessories specific to the Y520-15IKBA.

Maintenance

All internal components are accessible by removing the bottom plate. This requires loosening numerous screws.

Maintenance options
Maintenance options

Warranty

The Y520-15IKBA comes with a twelvemonth Lenovo warranty. Please see our Guarantees, Return policies and Warranties FAQ for country-specific information.

Input Devices

The Y520-15IKBA retains the same keyboard and touchpad as Lenovo used on the Y520-15IKBN. Our test device has no keyboard backlighting though.

Keyboard
Keyboard
Touchpad
Touchpad

Display

Sub-pixel array
Sub-pixel array
Backlight bleed
Backlight bleed

The Y520-15IKBA has a matte 15.6-inch IPS display with a 1,920x1,080 resolution. This is currently the only display that Lenovo offers with the Y520-15IKBA.

While the display brightness is comparatively low, it is sufficiently bright to use the display indoors in well-lit areas.

229
cd/m²
214
cd/m²
241
cd/m²
230
cd/m²
243
cd/m²
245
cd/m²
219
cd/m²
222
cd/m²
238
cd/m²
Distribution of brightness
LG Philips LGD0533
X-Rite i1Pro 2
Maximum: 245 cd/m² Average: 231.2 cd/m² Minimum: 2.8 cd/m²
Brightness Distribution: 87 %
Center on Battery: 244 cd/m²
Contrast: 1013:1 (Black: 0.24 cd/m²)
ΔE Color 6.36 | 0.6-29.43 Ø6, calibrated: 6.51
ΔE Greyscale 5.63 | 0.64-98 Ø6.3
59% sRGB (Argyll 3D) 38% AdobeRGB 1998 (Argyll 3D)
Gamma: 2.47
Lenovo Legion Y520-15IKBA-80WY001VGE
LG Philips LGD0533, , 1920x1080, 15.6
Alienware 13 R3 (i5-7300HQ, GTX 1050 Ti)
Chi Mei CMN1371, , 1920x1080, 13.3
Schenker XMG Apex 15
LG Philips LP156WF6 (LGD046F), , 1920x1080, 15.6
Asus ROG Strix GL702ZC-GC204T
LG Philips LP173WF4-SPF5, , 1920x1080, 17.3
Dell Inspiron 15 7000 7577 4K
Name: AU Optronics B156ZAN, , 3840x2160, 15.6
Lenovo Legion Y520-15IKBN-80WK001KUS
LP156WF6-SPK3, , 1920x1080, 15.6
Response Times
-6%
-13%
15%
6%
-29%
Response Time Grey 50% / Grey 80% *
42 (22, 20)
41.6 (22.8, 18.8)
1%
42.4 (20.4, 22)
-1%
36 (18, 18)
14%
35.2 (17.2, 18)
16%
58.8 (33.6, 25.2)
-40%
Response Time Black / White *
27 (17, 10)
32 (18, 14)
-19%
32 (18, 14)
-19%
23 (14, 9)
15%
28.4 (16, 12.4)
-5%
36 (23.6, 12.4)
-33%
PWM Frequency
24900 (90)
25000 (20)
0%
20490 (99)
-18%
21550 (99)
-13%
Screen
22%
27%
19%
21%
-19%
Brightness middle
243
363
49%
269
11%
415
71%
322.9
33%
239
-2%
Brightness
231
322
39%
274
19%
365
58%
309
34%
244
6%
Brightness Distribution
87
80
-8%
91
5%
82
-6%
90
3%
88
1%
Black Level *
0.24
0.31
-29%
0.23
4%
0.42
-75%
0.36
-50%
0.35
-46%
Contrast
1013
1171
16%
1170
15%
988
-2%
897
-11%
683
-33%
Colorchecker DeltaE2000 *
6.36
5.1
20%
4.25
33%
4.95
22%
3.99
37%
7.3
-15%
Colorchecker DeltaE2000 max. *
12.76
8.9
30%
10.39
19%
9.34
27%
8.97
30%
24.7
-94%
Colorchecker DeltaE2000 calibrated *
6.51
2.51
61%
Greyscale DeltaE2000 *
5.63
6.2
-10%
3.11
45%
4.69
17%
5.3
6%
4.9
13%
Gamma
2.47 89%
2.35 94%
2.36 93%
2.33 94%
2.041 108%
2.19 100%
CCT
7411 88%
6827 95%
6851 95%
6485 100%
6941 94%
7332 89%
Color Space (Percent of AdobeRGB 1998)
38
59.2
56%
54
42%
54
42%
62.9
66%
35
-8%
Color Space (Percent of sRGB)
59
90.7
54%
83
41%
82
39%
96.8
64%
55
-7%
Total Average (Program / Settings)
8% / 15%
7% / 18%
17% / 19%
14% / 19%
-24% / -21%

* ... smaller is better

CalMAN – ColorChecker
CalMAN – ColorChecker
CalMAN – Saturation
CalMAN – Saturation
CalMAN – Grayscale
CalMAN – Grayscale
CalMAN – ColorChecker (calibrated)
CalMAN – ColorChecker (calibrated)
CalMAN – Saturation (calibrated)
CalMAN – Saturation (calibrated)
CalMAN – Grayscale (calibrated)
CalMAN – Grayscale (calibrated)

Contents look rather pale and dark at first glance. This is even the case at higher brightness levels. In contrast to colors, black tones look rich and strong. Our tests show that the Y520-15IKBA has a lower black level and a better contrast ratio than the Y520-15IKBN. Therefore, the display is more than just subjectively better than last year’s model.

Lenovo has improved the color space coverage too, albeit the Y520-15IKBA still scores lower than average. Our review unit has 59% sRGB and 39% AdobeRGB coverage, neither of which are bad scores. Comparable gaming laptops have much better color space coverage though.

Color space coverage sRGB – 59%
Color space coverage sRGB – 59%
Color space coverage AdobeRGB – 38%
Color space coverage AdobeRGB – 38%

The Y520-15IKBA is hardly usable outside for activities such as extensive outdoor gaming sessions as the display is difficult to read even on cloudy days. Recognizing fast movements is harder still. While the maximum brightness may be enough for web browsing or typing outdoors, the Y520-15IKBA is a device designed primarily for indoor use.

Using the Lenovo Legion Y520-15IKBA outside.
Using the Lenovo Legion Y520-15IKBA outside.
Using the Lenovo Legion Y520-15IKBA outside.
Using the Lenovo Legion Y520-15IKBA outside.

Display Response Times

Display response times show how fast the screen is able to change from one color to the next. Slow response times can lead to afterimages and can cause moving objects to appear blurry (ghosting). Gamers of fast-paced 3D titles should pay special attention to fast response times.
       Response Time Black to White
27 ms ... rise ↗ and fall ↘ combined↗ 17 ms rise
↘ 10 ms fall
The screen shows relatively slow response rates in our tests and may be too slow for gamers.
In comparison, all tested devices range from 0.8 (minimum) to 240 (maximum) ms. » 54 % of all devices are better.
This means that the measured response time is similar to the average of all tested devices (25 ms).
       Response Time 50% Grey to 80% Grey
42 ms ... rise ↗ and fall ↘ combined↗ 22 ms rise
↘ 20 ms fall
The screen shows slow response rates in our tests and will be unsatisfactory for gamers.
In comparison, all tested devices range from 0.9 (minimum) to 636 (maximum) ms. » 55 % of all devices are better.
This means that the measured response time is similar to the average of all tested devices (39.8 ms).

Screen Flickering / PWM (Pulse-Width Modulation)

To dim the screen, some notebooks will simply cycle the backlight on and off in rapid succession - a method called Pulse Width Modulation (PWM) . This cycling frequency should ideally be undetectable to the human eye. If said frequency is too low, users with sensitive eyes may experience strain or headaches or even notice the flickering altogether.
Screen flickering / PWM detected 24900 Hz ≤ 90 % brightness setting

The display backlight flickers at 24900 Hz (Likely utilizing PWM) Flickering detected at a brightness setting of 90 % and below. There should be no flickering or PWM above this brightness setting.

The frequency of 24900 Hz is quite high, so most users sensitive to PWM should not notice any flickering.

In comparison: 51 % of all tested devices do not use PWM to dim the display. If PWM was detected, an average of 9418 (minimum: 43 - maximum: 142900) Hz was measured.

The display has strong viewing angles, which IPS panels tend to have. Content is easily readable from any angle with no color or image distortions at acute angles. Moreover, the matte finish prevents any annoying reflections from appearing on the screen.

The Y520-15IKBA uses Pulse-width modulation (PWM) to adjust display brightness. Using a device with PWM for long periods can cause headaches and eye strain for those with sensitive eyes. Please see our article on PWM for further details. Fortunately, the PWM frequency is very high at 24,900 Hz, so you should seldom see a flickering display when using the device.

Viewing Angles
Viewing Angles

Performance

Our review unit is one of the cheapest Legion Y520 configurations and is equipped with an Intel Core i5-7300HQ processor, an AMD Radeon RX 560 dedicated graphics card, 8 GB of RAM and a 5,400 RPM 1 TB HDD. The HDD limits overall performance as it has much slower transfer speeds than an SSD. You could retrofit an SSD, but you could also just buy a slightly more expensive configuration that includes a factory fitted SSD and other upgrades.

For example, spending around €100 (~$117) more will get you not only an additional 128 GB PCIe SSD, but also an Intel Core i7-7700HQ and an NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050. These CPU and GPU upgrades will bring noticeable performance improvements too.

 

Processor

The Intel Core i5-7300HQ is a quad-core CPU based on Intel’s Kaby Lake architecture. The CPU can clock up to 3.5 GHz in single core tasks and up to 3.1 GHz for multi-core processes. The Core i5-7300HQ has a 45-W TDP that can be reduced by the manufacturer where necessary. The CPU integrates an Intel HD Graphics 630, the performance of which is comparable to an NVIDIA GeForce 940M thanks to the processor’s onboard dual channel memory controller.

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Cinebench R15 CPU Multi 64 Bit

The Y520-15IKBA performed at expected levels in our Cinebench R15 benchmark. Multi-core performance is slightly below average for Intel Core i5-7300HQ powered devices but the Y520-15IKBA performed at a good level overall. Our review unit maintained peak performance throughout our endurance tests.

You can find how well other Intel Core i5-7300HQ powered notebooks performed on our CPU benchmark page.

Cinebench R15
CPU Single 64Bit
Schenker XMG Apex 15
Intel Core i7-8700
197 Points ∼100% +34%
Lenovo Legion Y520-15IKBN-80WK001KUS
Intel Core i7-7700HQ
159 Points ∼81% +8%
Average of class Gaming
  (77 - 212, n=510)
156 Points ∼79% +6%
Dell Inspiron 15 7000 7577 4K
Intel Core i7-7700HQ
150 Points ∼76% +2%
Lenovo Legion Y520-15IKBA-80WY001VGE
Intel Core i5-7300HQ
147 Points ∼75%
Average Intel Core i5-7300HQ
  (129 - 149, n=19)
141 Points ∼72% -4%
Asus ROG Strix GL702ZC-GC204T
AMD Ryzen 5 1600
140 Points ∼71% -5%
Alienware 13 R3 (i5-7300HQ, GTX 1050 Ti)
Intel Core i5-7300HQ
136 Points ∼69% -7%
CPU Multi 64Bit
Schenker XMG Apex 15
Intel Core i7-8700
1215 Points ∼100% +143%
Asus ROG Strix GL702ZC-GC204T
AMD Ryzen 5 1600
1129 Points ∼93% +125%
Average of class Gaming
  (196 - 2022, n=513)
824 Points ∼68% +64%
Dell Inspiron 15 7000 7577 4K
Intel Core i7-7700HQ
728 Points ∼60% +45%
Lenovo Legion Y520-15IKBN-80WK001KUS
Intel Core i7-7700HQ
652 Points ∼54% +30%
Alienware 13 R3 (i5-7300HQ, GTX 1050 Ti)
Intel Core i5-7300HQ
512 Points ∼42% +2%
Average Intel Core i5-7300HQ
  (501 - 520, n=19)
512 Points ∼42% +2%
Lenovo Legion Y520-15IKBA-80WY001VGE
Intel Core i5-7300HQ
501 Points ∼41%
Cinebench R15 CPU Single 64Bit
147 Points
Cinebench R15 CPU Multi 64Bit
501 Points
Cinebench R15 OpenGL 64Bit
98.8 fps
Cinebench R15 Ref. Match 64Bit
98 %
Help

System Performance

The Y520-15IKBA performed well in our system performance benchmarks but underperformed against comparable devices. PCMark 10 in particular highlights this. Our review unit performed at the expected level for a Core i5-7300HQ and Radeon RX 560 equipped device. However, it scored 55% lower than the Schenker XMG Apex 15 and 31% worse than the class average for gaming notebooks.

The speed limitation of the 5,400 RPM HDD is apparent in daily use. Windows 10 is plagued by short load times that are not apparent with an SSD. Additionally, programs are generally slow to load.

PCMark 8
Work Score Accelerated v2
Schenker XMG Apex 15
GeForce GTX 1060 (Laptop), 8700, Samsung SSD 960 Evo 250GB m.2 NVMe
5653 Points ∼100% +20%
Average of class Gaming
  (2484 - 6515, n=386)
5033 Points ∼89% +7%
Asus ROG Strix GL702ZC-GC204T
Radeon RX 580 (Laptop), 1600, Seagate Mobile HDD 1TB ST1000LX015-1U7172
4988 Points ∼88% +6%
Alienware 13 R3 (i5-7300HQ, GTX 1050 Ti)
GeForce GTX 1050 Ti (Laptop), 7300HQ, Samsung PM961 MZVLW256HEHP
4721 Points ∼84% 0%
Lenovo Legion Y520-15IKBA-80WY001VGE
Radeon RX 560 (Laptop), 7300HQ, Seagate Mobile HDD 1TB ST1000LM035
4700 Points ∼83%
Average Intel Core i5-7300HQ, AMD Radeon RX 560 (Laptop)
 
4700 Points ∼83% 0%
Dell Inspiron 15 7000 7577 4K
GeForce GTX 1060 Max-Q, 7700HQ, SK hynix SC311 M.2
4102 Points ∼73% -13%
Home Score Accelerated v2
Schenker XMG Apex 15
GeForce GTX 1060 (Laptop), 8700, Samsung SSD 960 Evo 250GB m.2 NVMe
4697 Points ∼100% +10%
Lenovo Legion Y520-15IKBA-80WY001VGE
Radeon RX 560 (Laptop), 7300HQ, Seagate Mobile HDD 1TB ST1000LM035
4257 Points ∼91%
Average Intel Core i5-7300HQ, AMD Radeon RX 560 (Laptop)
 
4257 Points ∼91% 0%
Average of class Gaming
  (2554 - 6093, n=403)
4257 Points ∼91% 0%
Asus ROG Strix GL702ZC-GC204T
Radeon RX 580 (Laptop), 1600, Seagate Mobile HDD 1TB ST1000LX015-1U7172
4186 Points ∼89% -2%
Alienware 13 R3 (i5-7300HQ, GTX 1050 Ti)
GeForce GTX 1050 Ti (Laptop), 7300HQ, Samsung PM961 MZVLW256HEHP
3664 Points ∼78% -14%
Dell Inspiron 15 7000 7577 4K
GeForce GTX 1060 Max-Q, 7700HQ, SK hynix SC311 M.2
3385 Points ∼72% -20%
PCMark 10 - Score
Schenker XMG Apex 15
GeForce GTX 1060 (Laptop), 8700, Samsung SSD 960 Evo 250GB m.2 NVMe
5732 Points ∼100% +55%
Average of class Gaming
  (2603 - 7171, n=204)
5225 Points ∼91% +41%
Asus ROG Strix GL702ZC-GC204T
Radeon RX 580 (Laptop), 1600, Seagate Mobile HDD 1TB ST1000LX015-1U7172
4440 Points ∼77% +20%
Dell Inspiron 15 7000 7577 4K
GeForce GTX 1060 Max-Q, 7700HQ, SK hynix SC311 M.2
4306 Points ∼75% +16%
Lenovo Legion Y520-15IKBA-80WY001VGE
Radeon RX 560 (Laptop), 7300HQ, Seagate Mobile HDD 1TB ST1000LM035
3700 Points ∼65%
Average Intel Core i5-7300HQ, AMD Radeon RX 560 (Laptop)
 
3700 Points ∼65% 0%
PCMark 8 Home Score Accelerated v2
4257 points
PCMark 8 Work Score Accelerated v2
4700 points
Help

Storage Devices

The Y520-15IKBA has plenty of storage thanks to its 1 TB drive. For reference, the HDD is a Seagate ST1000LM035. However, the 5,400 RPM HDD has much slower read and write speeds than any SSD. Worse still, the HDD is slower than other HDDs. The Seagate ST1000LX015-1U7172 HDD in the ASUS ROG Strix GL702ZC has significantly higher transfer speeds than the HDD in our review unit.

Please see our HDD/SSD benchmark page to compare the Seagate Mobile HDD 1 TB ST1000LM035 performs against other drives.

Lenovo Legion Y520-15IKBA-80WY001VGE
Seagate Mobile HDD 1TB ST1000LM035
Alienware 13 R3 (i5-7300HQ, GTX 1050 Ti)
Samsung PM961 MZVLW256HEHP
Schenker XMG Apex 15
Samsung SSD 960 Evo 250GB m.2 NVMe
Asus ROG Strix GL702ZC-GC204T
Seagate Mobile HDD 1TB ST1000LX015-1U7172
Lenovo Legion Y520-15IKBN-80WK001KUS
Samsung PM961 MZVLW256HEHP
Average Seagate Mobile HDD 1TB ST1000LM035
 
CrystalDiskMark 3.0
27857%
35878%
14%
26746%
28%
Write 4k QD32
0.431
410.2
95074%
570.7
132313%
0.221
-49%
392.9
91060%
0.803 (0.154 - 4.71, n=14)
86%
Read 4k QD32
0.838
492
58611%
675.6
80521%
1.294
54%
457.7
54518%
0.993 (0.707 - 1.267, n=14)
18%
Write 4k
0.319
146.1
45699%
164.1
51342%
0.169
-47%
146.4
45793%
0.525 (0.009 - 3.15, n=14)
65%
Read 4k
0.394
58.7
14798%
59.96
15118%
0.484
23%
58.93
14857%
0.4174 (0.326 - 0.491, n=14)
6%
Write 512
65.2
850.1
1204%
1007
1444%
101.8
56%
822
1161%
77.3 (26.7 - 98.6, n=14)
19%
Read 512
28.29
1089
3749%
791.8
2699%
37.67
33%
785.8
2678%
31.5 (22.3 - 42.5, n=14)
11%
Write Seq
84.43
1210
1333%
1375
1529%
105.1
24%
1202
1324%
88.5 (55.8 - 130, n=14)
5%
Read Seq
81.02
2018
2391%
1751
2061%
92.48
14%
2170
2578%
90.9 (48.6 - 137, n=14)
12%
Seagate Mobile HDD 1TB ST1000LM035
Transfer Rate Minimum: 5.2 MB/s
Transfer Rate Maximum: 128.8 MB/s
Transfer Rate Average: 91.3 MB/s
Access Time: 20.5 ms
Burst Rate: 97.8 MB/s
CPU Usage: 12.1 %

Graphics Card

Lenovo has equipped the Y520-15IKBA with an AMD Radeon RX 560, a mid-range GPU with 2 GB GDDR5 VRAM that can run most current games and complex 3D applications. Our tests indicate that most modern games should be playable at medium graphics settings.

The Radeon RX 560 scores well in 3DMark benchmarks, yet it cannot compete with the more powerful GPUs found in our comparison devices.

Please see our GPU benchmark page for a more detailed look at how the AMD Radeon RX 560 compares against other GPUs.

3DMark 11 - 1280x720 Performance GPU
Asus ROG Strix GL702ZC-GC204T
AMD Radeon RX 580 (Laptop), AMD Ryzen 5 1600
15182 Points ∼100% +82%
Schenker XMG Apex 15
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060 (Laptop), Intel Core i7-8700
15149 Points ∼100% +82%
Average of class Gaming
  (513 - 50983, n=609)
13365 Points ∼88% +60%
Dell Inspiron 15 7000 7577 4K
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060 Max-Q, Intel Core i7-7700HQ
13180 Points ∼87% +58%
Alienware 13 R3 (i5-7300HQ, GTX 1050 Ti)
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 Ti (Laptop), Intel Core i5-7300HQ
10325 Points ∼68% +24%
Lenovo Legion Y520-15IKBA-80WY001VGE
AMD Radeon RX 560 (Laptop), Intel Core i5-7300HQ
8345 Points ∼55%
Average AMD Radeon RX 560 (Laptop)
  (8296 - 8345, n=3)
8323 Points ∼55% 0%
3DMark
1920x1080 Fire Strike Graphics
Schenker XMG Apex 15
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060 (Laptop), Intel Core i7-8700
12138 Points ∼100% +112%
Asus ROG Strix GL702ZC-GC204T
AMD Radeon RX 580 (Laptop), AMD Ryzen 5 1600
11512 Points ∼95% +101%
Average of class Gaming
  (385 - 40636, n=534)
11342 Points ∼93% +98%
Dell Inspiron 15 7000 7577 4K
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060 Max-Q, Intel Core i7-7700HQ
10180 Points ∼84% +77%
Alienware 13 R3 (i5-7300HQ, GTX 1050 Ti)
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 Ti (Laptop), Intel Core i5-7300HQ
8066 Points ∼66% +41%
Lenovo Legion Y520-15IKBN-80WK001KUS
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 Ti (Laptop), Intel Core i7-7700HQ
7682 Points ∼63% +34%
Average AMD Radeon RX 560 (Laptop)
  (5705 - 6258, n=3)
5900 Points ∼49% +3%
Lenovo Legion Y520-15IKBA-80WY001VGE
AMD Radeon RX 560 (Laptop), Intel Core i5-7300HQ
5738 Points ∼47%
1280x720 Cloud Gate Standard Graphics
Schenker XMG Apex 15
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060 (Laptop), Intel Core i7-8700
85737 Points ∼100% +135%
Asus ROG Strix GL702ZC-GC204T
AMD Radeon RX 580 (Laptop), AMD Ryzen 5 1600
70020 Points ∼82% +92%
Dell Inspiron 15 7000 7577 4K
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060 Max-Q, Intel Core i7-7700HQ
69279 Points ∼81% +90%
Average of class Gaming
  (5761 - 184578, n=516)
67272 Points ∼78% +84%
Alienware 13 R3 (i5-7300HQ, GTX 1050 Ti)
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 Ti (Laptop), Intel Core i5-7300HQ
51416 Points ∼60% +41%
Lenovo Legion Y520-15IKBN-80WK001KUS
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 Ti (Laptop), Intel Core i7-7700HQ
50981 Points ∼59% +40%
Lenovo Legion Y520-15IKBA-80WY001VGE
AMD Radeon RX 560 (Laptop), Intel Core i5-7300HQ
36528 Points ∼43%
Average AMD Radeon RX 560 (Laptop)
  (36424 - 36552, n=3)
36501 Points ∼43% 0%
3DMark 11 Performance
7567 points
3DMark Cloud Gate Standard Score
14354 points
3DMark Fire Strike Score
4899 points
Help

Gaming Performance

The Y520-15IKBA can run most games at medium graphics and less demanding games at higher settings. For example, “The Witcher 3” runs without any issues. Frame rates dip if the system is being particularly taxed, but the cooling system quickly restores the performance.

01234567891011121314151617181920212223Tooltip
The Witcher 3 ultra

Almost all the games against which we tested our review unit are playable at medium graphics in 1080p. Overall, the Y520-15IKBA is suitable for gaming.

Please see our gaming benchmark page for a more detailed look at how the AMD Radeon RX 560 performs in other games.

Thief
1920x1080 Very High Preset AA:FXAA & High SS AF:8x
Dell Inspiron 15 7000 7577 4K
GeForce GTX 1060 Max-Q, 7700HQ, SK hynix SC311 M.2
70.4 fps ∼100% +130%
Average of class Gaming
  (9.3 - 142, n=185)
58.7 fps ∼83% +92%
Alienware 13 R3 (i5-7300HQ, GTX 1050 Ti)
GeForce GTX 1050 Ti (Laptop), 7300HQ, Samsung PM961 MZVLW256HEHP
50.3 fps ∼71% +64%
Lenovo Legion Y520-15IKBA-80WY001VGE
Radeon RX 560 (Laptop), 7300HQ, Seagate Mobile HDD 1TB ST1000LM035
30.6 fps ∼43%
Average AMD Radeon RX 560 (Laptop)
 
30.6 fps ∼43% 0%
1366x768 High Preset AA:FXAA & Low SS AF:4x
Average of class Gaming
  (19.3 - 145, n=133)
70.5 fps ∼100% +104%
Alienware 13 R3 (i5-7300HQ, GTX 1050 Ti)
GeForce GTX 1050 Ti (Laptop), 7300HQ, Samsung PM961 MZVLW256HEHP
65.3 fps ∼93% +89%
Lenovo Legion Y520-15IKBA-80WY001VGE
Radeon RX 560 (Laptop), 7300HQ, Seagate Mobile HDD 1TB ST1000LM035
34.5 fps ∼49%
Average AMD Radeon RX 560 (Laptop)
 
34.5 fps ∼49% 0%
1366x768 Normal Preset AA:FX
Average of class Gaming
  (22.6 - 148, n=75)
70.2 fps ∼100% +98%
Alienware 13 R3 (i5-7300HQ, GTX 1050 Ti)
GeForce GTX 1050 Ti (Laptop), 7300HQ, Samsung PM961 MZVLW256HEHP
66.4 fps ∼95% +88%
Lenovo Legion Y520-15IKBA-80WY001VGE
Radeon RX 560 (Laptop), 7300HQ, Seagate Mobile HDD 1TB ST1000LM035
35.4 fps ∼50%
Average AMD Radeon RX 560 (Laptop)
 
35.4 fps ∼50% 0%
1024x768 Very Low Preset
Average of class Gaming
  (24.7 - 150, n=58)
77.5 fps ∼100% +102%
Alienware 13 R3 (i5-7300HQ, GTX 1050 Ti)
GeForce GTX 1050 Ti (Laptop), 7300HQ, Samsung PM961 MZVLW256HEHP
66 fps ∼85% +72%
Lenovo Legion Y520-15IKBA-80WY001VGE
Radeon RX 560 (Laptop), 7300HQ, Seagate Mobile HDD 1TB ST1000LM035
38.3 fps ∼49%
Average AMD Radeon RX 560 (Laptop)
 
38.3 fps ∼49% 0%
The Witcher 3
1920x1080 Ultra Graphics & Postprocessing (HBAO+)
Average of class Gaming
  (12.6 - 115, n=307)
49.7 fps ∼100% +140%
Schenker XMG Apex 15
GeForce GTX 1060 (Laptop), 8700, Samsung SSD 960 Evo 250GB m.2 NVMe
41.9 fps ∼84% +102%
Lenovo Legion Y520-15IKBN-80WK001KUS
GeForce GTX 1050 Ti (Laptop), 7700HQ, Samsung PM961 MZVLW256HEHP
38 fps ∼76% +84%
Dell Inspiron 15 7000 7577 4K
GeForce GTX 1060 Max-Q, 7700HQ, SK hynix SC311 M.2
36.8 fps ∼74% +78%
Asus ROG Strix GL702ZC-GC204T
Radeon RX 580 (Laptop), 1600, Seagate Mobile HDD 1TB ST1000LX015-1U7172
36 fps ∼72% +74%
Alienware 13 R3 (i5-7300HQ, GTX 1050 Ti)
GeForce GTX 1050 Ti (Laptop), 7300HQ, Samsung PM961 MZVLW256HEHP
28.3 fps ∼57% +37%
Lenovo Legion Y520-15IKBA-80WY001VGE
Radeon RX 560 (Laptop), 7300HQ, Seagate Mobile HDD 1TB ST1000LM035
20.7 fps ∼42%
Average AMD Radeon RX 560 (Laptop)
  (19.6 - 20.7, n=2)
20.2 fps ∼41% -2%
1920x1080 High Graphics & Postprocessing (Nvidia HairWorks Off)
Average of class Gaming
  (11.1 - 194, n=258)
86.7 fps ∼100% +146%
Schenker XMG Apex 15
GeForce GTX 1060 (Laptop), 8700, Samsung SSD 960 Evo 250GB m.2 NVMe
77.6 fps ∼90% +120%
Dell Inspiron 15 7000 7577 4K
GeForce GTX 1060 Max-Q, 7700HQ, SK hynix SC311 M.2
70.1 fps ∼81% +99%
Asus ROG Strix GL702ZC-GC204T
Radeon RX 580 (Laptop), 1600, Seagate Mobile HDD 1TB ST1000LX015-1U7172
68.9 fps ∼79% +96%
Alienware 13 R3 (i5-7300HQ, GTX 1050 Ti)
GeForce GTX 1050 Ti (Laptop), 7300HQ, Samsung PM961 MZVLW256HEHP
40.5 fps ∼47% +15%
Lenovo Legion Y520-15IKBA-80WY001VGE
Radeon RX 560 (Laptop), 7300HQ, Seagate Mobile HDD 1TB ST1000LM035
35.2 fps ∼41%
Average AMD Radeon RX 560 (Laptop)
  (34.1 - 35.2, n=2)
34.7 fps ∼40% -1%
BioShock Infinite
1920x1080 Ultra Preset, DX11 (DDOF)
Dell Inspiron 15 7000 7577 4K
GeForce GTX 1060 Max-Q, 7700HQ, SK hynix SC311 M.2
100.4 fps ∼100% +151%
Average of class Gaming
  (9.7 - 266, n=337)
97.5 fps ∼97% +143%
Lenovo Legion Y520-15IKBN-80WK001KUS
GeForce GTX 1050 Ti (Laptop), 7700HQ, Samsung PM961 MZVLW256HEHP
74 fps ∼74% +85%
Alienware 13 R3 (i5-7300HQ, GTX 1050 Ti)
GeForce GTX 1050 Ti (Laptop), 7300HQ, Samsung PM961 MZVLW256HEHP
69.8 fps ∼70% +74%
Average AMD Radeon RX 560 (Laptop)
  (40.1 - 44.2, n=2)
42.1 fps ∼42% +5%
Lenovo Legion Y520-15IKBA-80WY001VGE
Radeon RX 560 (Laptop), 7300HQ, Seagate Mobile HDD 1TB ST1000LM035
40.05 fps ∼40%
1366x768 High Preset
Lenovo Legion Y520-15IKBN-80WK001KUS
GeForce GTX 1050 Ti (Laptop), 7700HQ, Samsung PM961 MZVLW256HEHP
174 fps ∼100% +148%
Average of class Gaming
  (31.5 - 348, n=274)
174 fps ∼100% +148%
Alienware 13 R3 (i5-7300HQ, GTX 1050 Ti)
GeForce GTX 1050 Ti (Laptop), 7300HQ, Samsung PM961 MZVLW256HEHP
166.4 fps ∼96% +137%
Average AMD Radeon RX 560 (Laptop)
  (70.1 - 130, n=2)
99.9 fps ∼57% +42%
Lenovo Legion Y520-15IKBA-80WY001VGE
Radeon RX 560 (Laptop), 7300HQ, Seagate Mobile HDD 1TB ST1000LM035
70.12 fps ∼40%
1366x768 Medium Preset
Average of class Gaming
  (37.9 - 381, n=215)
195 fps ∼100% +159%
Lenovo Legion Y520-15IKBN-80WK001KUS
GeForce GTX 1050 Ti (Laptop), 7700HQ, Samsung PM961 MZVLW256HEHP
189 fps ∼97% +151%
Alienware 13 R3 (i5-7300HQ, GTX 1050 Ti)
GeForce GTX 1050 Ti (Laptop), 7300HQ, Samsung PM961 MZVLW256HEHP
187.4 fps ∼96% +149%
Average AMD Radeon RX 560 (Laptop)
  (75.3 - 141, n=2)
108 fps ∼55% +43%
Lenovo Legion Y520-15IKBA-80WY001VGE
Radeon RX 560 (Laptop), 7300HQ, Seagate Mobile HDD 1TB ST1000LM035
75.34 fps ∼39%
1280x720 Very Low Preset
Average of class Gaming
  (73 - 452, n=189)
242 fps ∼100% +173%
Alienware 13 R3 (i5-7300HQ, GTX 1050 Ti)
GeForce GTX 1050 Ti (Laptop), 7300HQ, Samsung PM961 MZVLW256HEHP
229.2 fps ∼95% +159%
Lenovo Legion Y520-15IKBN-80WK001KUS
GeForce GTX 1050 Ti (Laptop), 7700HQ, Samsung PM961 MZVLW256HEHP
227 fps ∼94% +156%
Average AMD Radeon RX 560 (Laptop)
  (88.6 - 151, n=2)
120 fps ∼50% +36%
Lenovo Legion Y520-15IKBA-80WY001VGE
Radeon RX 560 (Laptop), 7300HQ, Seagate Mobile HDD 1TB ST1000LM035
88.56 fps ∼37%
Rise of the Tomb Raider
1920x1080 Very High Preset AA:FX AF:16x
Average of class Gaming
  (8.9 - 159, n=168)
68.5 fps ∼100% +146%
Schenker XMG Apex 15
GeForce GTX 1060 (Laptop), 8700, Samsung SSD 960 Evo 250GB m.2 NVMe
67.9 fps ∼99% +144%
Dell Inspiron 15 7000 7577 4K
GeForce GTX 1060 Max-Q, 7700HQ, SK hynix SC311 M.2
45.3 fps ∼66% +63%
Lenovo Legion Y520-15IKBN-80WK001KUS
GeForce GTX 1050 Ti (Laptop), 7700HQ, Samsung PM961 MZVLW256HEHP
38 fps ∼55% +37%
Alienware 13 R3 (i5-7300HQ, GTX 1050 Ti)
GeForce GTX 1050 Ti (Laptop), 7300HQ, Samsung PM961 MZVLW256HEHP
27.8 fps ∼41% 0%
Lenovo Legion Y520-15IKBA-80WY001VGE
Radeon RX 560 (Laptop), 7300HQ, Seagate Mobile HDD 1TB ST1000LM035
27.8 fps ∼41%
Average AMD Radeon RX 560 (Laptop)
  (24.1 - 27.8, n=2)
26 fps ∼38% -6%
1920x1080 High Preset AA:FX AF:4x
Average of class Gaming
  (11.6 - 189, n=132)
77.5 fps ∼100% +121%
Schenker XMG Apex 15
GeForce GTX 1060 (Laptop), 8700, Samsung SSD 960 Evo 250GB m.2 NVMe
76.1 fps ∼98% +117%
Alienware 13 R3 (i5-7300HQ, GTX 1050 Ti)
GeForce GTX 1050 Ti (Laptop), 7300HQ, Samsung PM961 MZVLW256HEHP
46.5 fps ∼60% +32%
Lenovo Legion Y520-15IKBN-80WK001KUS
GeForce GTX 1050 Ti (Laptop), 7700HQ, Samsung PM961 MZVLW256HEHP
45 fps ∼58% +28%
Lenovo Legion Y520-15IKBA-80WY001VGE
Radeon RX 560 (Laptop), 7300HQ, Seagate Mobile HDD 1TB ST1000LM035
35.1 fps ∼45%
Average AMD Radeon RX 560 (Laptop)
  (30.6 - 35.1, n=2)
32.9 fps ∼42% -6%
1366x768 Medium Preset AF:2x
Average of class Gaming
  (14.5 - 225, n=95)
115 fps ∼100% +143%
Lenovo Legion Y520-15IKBN-80WK001KUS
GeForce GTX 1050 Ti (Laptop), 7700HQ, Samsung PM961 MZVLW256HEHP
76 fps ∼66% +60%
Alienware 13 R3 (i5-7300HQ, GTX 1050 Ti)
GeForce GTX 1050 Ti (Laptop), 7300HQ, Samsung PM961 MZVLW256HEHP
70.6 fps ∼61% +49%
Average AMD Radeon RX 560 (Laptop)
  (47.4 - 51.6, n=2)
49.5 fps ∼43% +4%
Lenovo Legion Y520-15IKBA-80WY001VGE
Radeon RX 560 (Laptop), 7300HQ, Seagate Mobile HDD 1TB ST1000LM035
47.4 fps ∼41%
1024x768 Lowest Preset
Average of class Gaming
  (23.6 - 318, n=91)
156 fps ∼100% +201%
Lenovo Legion Y520-15IKBN-80WK001KUS
GeForce GTX 1050 Ti (Laptop), 7700HQ, Samsung PM961 MZVLW256HEHP
122 fps ∼78% +136%
Alienware 13 R3 (i5-7300HQ, GTX 1050 Ti)
GeForce GTX 1050 Ti (Laptop), 7300HQ, Samsung PM961 MZVLW256HEHP
83.8 fps ∼54% +62%
Average AMD Radeon RX 560 (Laptop)
  (51.8 - 71.9, n=2)
61.9 fps ∼40% +19%
Lenovo Legion Y520-15IKBA-80WY001VGE
Radeon RX 560 (Laptop), 7300HQ, Seagate Mobile HDD 1TB ST1000LM035
51.8 fps ∼33%
Dragon Age: Inquisition
1920x1080 Ultra Graphics Quality AA:2x MS
Asus ROG Strix GL702ZC-GC204T
Radeon RX 580 (Laptop), 1600, Seagate Mobile HDD 1TB ST1000LX015-1U7172
54.1 fps ∼100% +126%
Average of class Gaming
  (5.5 - 163, n=42)
51 fps ∼94% +113%
Alienware 13 R3 (i5-7300HQ, GTX 1050 Ti)
GeForce GTX 1050 Ti (Laptop), 7300HQ, Samsung PM961 MZVLW256HEHP
38.5 fps ∼71% +61%
Average AMD Radeon RX 560 (Laptop)
  (23.9 - 26.4, n=2)
25.2 fps ∼47% +5%
Lenovo Legion Y520-15IKBA-80WY001VGE
Radeon RX 560 (Laptop), 7300HQ, Seagate Mobile HDD 1TB ST1000LM035
23.9 fps ∼44%
1920x1080 High Graphics Quality
Asus ROG Strix GL702ZC-GC204T
Radeon RX 580 (Laptop), 1600, Seagate Mobile HDD 1TB ST1000LX015-1U7172
81.3 fps ∼100% +133%
Average of class Gaming
  (8.7 - 174, n=45)
68 fps ∼84% +95%
Alienware 13 R3 (i5-7300HQ, GTX 1050 Ti)
GeForce GTX 1050 Ti (Laptop), 7300HQ, Samsung PM961 MZVLW256HEHP
54 fps ∼66% +55%
Average AMD Radeon RX 560 (Laptop)
  (34.9 - 40.3, n=2)
37.6 fps ∼46% +8%
Lenovo Legion Y520-15IKBA-80WY001VGE
Radeon RX 560 (Laptop), 7300HQ, Seagate Mobile HDD 1TB ST1000LM035
34.9 fps ∼43%
low med. high ultra
BioShock Infinite (2013) 88.5675.3470.1240.05fps
Thief (2014) 38.335.434.530.6fps
Dragon Age: Inquisition (2014) 34.923.9fps
The Witcher 3 (2015) 35.220.7fps
Rise of the Tomb Raider (2016) 51.847.435.127.8fps

Emissions

Fan Noise

Our review unit is whisper quiet when web browsing or doing office work. Ambient noise is almost always louder than the device, while the HDD is barely audible. The fans are noticeable when gaming, but they are not annoying or obtrusive.

Noise Level

Idle
31.3 / 31.3 / 31.3 dB(A)
HDD
31.3 dB(A)
Load
32.8 / 39 dB(A)
  red to green bar
 
 
30 dB
silent
40 dB(A)
audible
50 dB(A)
loud
 
min: dark, med: mid, max: light   Audix TM1, Arta (15 cm distance)   environment noise: 30.3 dB(A)
dB(A) 0102030405060708090Deep BassMiddle BassHigh BassLower RangeMidsHigher MidsLower HighsMid HighsUpper HighsSuper Highs2031.13432.532.331.12530.933.932.432.730.93133.73334.634.333.74029.930.73030.229.95028.630.329.332.728.66327.929.627.726.227.980262626.926.92610026.12625.424.526.112525.925.425.125.225.916025.32724.222.725.320024.927.623.122.124.925024.127.122.12224.131525.631.221.920.125.640023.328.619.419.723.350022.126.819.719.222.163021.725.719.518.921.780022.62722.918.322.6100023.530.321.617.823.51250212919.117.621160021.2271817.321.2200020.82718.317.520.8250019.631.318.117.719.6315018.725.518.117.918.7400018.822.618.117.918.8500018.522.118.418.118.5630018.820.818.318.418.8800018.919.618.518.518.91000019.118.918.618.519.11250020.118.918.518.420.11600020.118.918.618.520.1SPL32.93931.430.332.9N1.72.81.41.21.7median 21.2median 26.8median 19.1median 18.5median 21.2Delta2.42.61.71.12.4hearing rangehide median Fan NoiseLenovo Legion Y520-15IKBA-80WY001VGE

Temperature

Stress test
Stress test

Surface temperatures remain relatively cool even under load. Overall, they averaged 21.3 °C (~0 °F) at idle, and increased to an average of 28.5 °C (~83 °F) under load. The device heats up more in different areas though. Thankfully, the palm rest only reaches an average of 23.6 °C (~74 °F) under load. The biggest change in surface temperature is at the top right-hand corner of the top case, where surface temperatures hit 40 °C (~104 °F). Notably, our test device stayed cooler in “The Witcher 3” benchmark than when stress tested. In a one-hour stress test, the core temperature reached 77 °C (~171 °F), but the CPU still maintained its base clock speed throughout.

Max. Load
 25.1 °C
77 F
31.9 °C
89 F
40.3 °C
105 F
 
 23.6 °C
74 F
29.1 °C
84 F
35.6 °C
96 F
 
 21.6 °C
71 F
23.8 °C
75 F
25.4 °C
78 F
 
Maximum: 40.3 °C = 105 F
Average: 28.5 °C = 83 F
39.6 °C
103 F
34.1 °C
93 F
25.7 °C
78 F
32.9 °C
91 F
34.3 °C
94 F
23.1 °C
74 F
23 °C
73 F
22.2 °C
72 F
20.7 °C
69 F
Maximum: 39.6 °C = 103 F
Average: 28.4 °C = 83 F
Power Supply (max.)  52.9 °C = 127 F | Room Temperature 20.7 °C = 69 F | FIRT 550-Pocket
(+) The average temperature for the upper side under maximal load is 28.5 °C / 83 F, compared to the average of 33.2 °C / 92 F for the devices in the class Gaming.
(±) The maximum temperature on the upper side is 40.3 °C / 105 F, compared to the average of 39.6 °C / 103 F, ranging from 21.6 to 68.8 °C for the class Gaming.
(+) The bottom heats up to a maximum of 39.6 °C / 103 F, compared to the average of 42.2 °C / 108 F
(+) In idle usage, the average temperature for the upper side is 21.3 °C / 70 F, compared to the device average of 33.2 °C / 92 F.
(+) Playing The Witcher 3, the average temperature for the upper side is 28.9 °C / 84 F, compared to the device average of 33.2 °C / 92 F.
(+) The palmrests and touchpad are cooler than skin temperature with a maximum of 26.5 °C / 79.7 F and are therefore cool to the touch.
(+) The average temperature of the palmrest area of similar devices was 28.8 °C / 83.8 F (+2.3 °C / 4.1 F).
Thermal imaging of the top case at idle
Thermal imaging of the top case at idle
Thermal imaging of the bottom case at idle
Thermal imaging of the bottom case at idle
Thermal imaging of the top case under load
Thermal imaging of the top case under load
Thermal imaging of the bottom case under load
Thermal imaging of the bottom case under load
Thermal imaging of the top case during The Witcher 3 benchmark
Thermal imaging of the top case during The Witcher 3 benchmark
Thermal imaging of the bottom case during The Witcher 3 benchmark
Thermal imaging of the bottom case during The Witcher 3 benchmark

Speakers

The Y520-15IKBA’s speakers sound unbalanced. Deep mid tones are over-represented, obscuring both high tones and bass. Furthermore, playing media at high volumes sounds unpleasant. We would recommend using external speakers or headphones where possible instead of the internal speakers.

dB(A) 0102030405060708090Deep BassMiddle BassHigh BassLower RangeMidsHigher MidsLower HighsMid HighsUpper HighsSuper Highs2033.832.333.82534.132.734.13134.534.334.54030.430.230.45031.932.731.96329.226.229.28026.226.926.210025.724.525.712525.625.225.616033.822.733.820038.522.138.525044.82244.831550.620.150.640057.419.757.450057.319.257.363061.918.961.98006618.366100067.917.867.9125067.417.667.4160062.117.362.1200061.217.561.2250056.817.756.8315056.117.956.1400052.817.952.8500055.318.155.3630048.518.448.5800049.318.549.31000041.418.541.41250039.618.439.61600041.118.541.1SPL73.630.373.6N26.61.226.6median 52.8median 18.5median 52.8Delta8.91.18.935.335.132.931.831.83236.535.132.428.93328.936.328.848.32761.52752.924.860.92462.822.763.32269.521.267.82174.82075.919.472.718.97117.770.117.86917.671.817.668.117.671.417.673.717.670.417.571.617.671.617.669.617.459.717.583.630.662.51.5median 69.6median 17.84.62.4hearing rangehide median Pink NoiseLenovo Legion Y520-15IKBA-80WY001VGEApple MacBook 12 (Early 2016) 1.1 GHz
Frequency diagram (checkboxes can be checked and unchecked to compare devices)
Lenovo Legion Y520-15IKBA-80WY001VGE audio analysis

(-) | not very loud speakers (67.93 dB)
Bass 100 - 315 Hz
(-) | nearly no bass - on average 16.2% lower than median
(±) | linearity of bass is average (12.5% delta to prev. frequency)
Mids 400 - 2000 Hz
(±) | higher mids - on average 9.9% higher than median
(±) | linearity of mids is average (8.8% delta to prev. frequency)
Highs 2 - 16 kHz
(+) | balanced highs - only 4.1% away from median
(±) | linearity of highs is average (11% delta to prev. frequency)
Overall 100 - 16.000 Hz
(±) | linearity of overall sound is average (29.2% difference to median)
Compared to same class
» 95% of all tested devices in this class were better, 3% similar, 2% worse
» The best had a delta of 6%, average was 17%, worst was 37%
Compared to all devices tested
» 86% of all tested devices were better, 4% similar, 10% worse
» The best had a delta of 3%, average was 21%, worst was 53%

Apple MacBook 12 (Early 2016) 1.1 GHz audio analysis

(+) | speakers can play relatively loud (83.6 dB)
Bass 100 - 315 Hz
(±) | reduced bass - on average 11.3% lower than median
(±) | linearity of bass is average (14.2% delta to prev. frequency)
Mids 400 - 2000 Hz
(+) | balanced mids - only 2.4% away from median
(+) | mids are linear (5.5% delta to prev. frequency)
Highs 2 - 16 kHz
(+) | balanced highs - only 2% away from median
(+) | highs are linear (4.5% delta to prev. frequency)
Overall 100 - 16.000 Hz
(+) | overall sound is linear (9.3% difference to median)
Compared to same class
» 1% of all tested devices in this class were better, 1% similar, 97% worse
» The best had a delta of 8%, average was 20%, worst was 50%
Compared to all devices tested
» 1% of all tested devices were better, 0% similar, 98% worse
» The best had a delta of 3%, average was 21%, worst was 53%

Power Management

Power Consumption

The Y520-15IKBA consumes significantly less power than the other devices on our comparison list. Primarily this is because our review unit has less powerful hardware comparatively. We measured average idle and load values of 7.8 W and 106 W respectively. This is well within the capability of the 135-W power supply, so you should have no problem charging the device when gaming.

Power Consumption
Off / Standbydarklight 0.29 / 0.37 Watt
Idledarkmidlight 4.7 / 7.8 / 8.4 Watt
Load midlight 76.5 / 106 Watt
 color bar
Key: min: dark, med: mid, max: light        Metrahit Energy
Lenovo Legion Y520-15IKBA-80WY001VGE
7300HQ, Radeon RX 560 (Laptop), Seagate Mobile HDD 1TB ST1000LM035, IPS, 1920x1080, 15.6
Alienware 13 R3 (i5-7300HQ, GTX 1050 Ti)
7300HQ, GeForce GTX 1050 Ti (Laptop), Samsung PM961 MZVLW256HEHP, IPS, 1920x1080, 13.3
Schenker XMG Apex 15
8700, GeForce GTX 1060 (Laptop), Samsung SSD 960 Evo 250GB m.2 NVMe, IPS, 1920x1080, 15.6
Dell Inspiron 15 7000 7577 4K
7700HQ, GeForce GTX 1060 Max-Q, SK hynix SC311 M.2, IPS, 3840x2160, 15.6
Lenovo Legion Y520-15IKBN-80WK001KUS
7700HQ, GeForce GTX 1050 Ti (Laptop), Samsung PM961 MZVLW256HEHP, IPS, 1920x1080, 15.6
Average AMD Radeon RX 560 (Laptop)
 
Average of class Gaming
 
Power Consumption
-25%
-48%
-17%
-23%
Idle Minimum *
4.7
6.6
-40%
7
-49%
5.5
-17%
8.5
-81%
Idle Average *
7.8
9.5
-22%
10
-28%
10.5
-35%
9.1
-17%
Idle Maximum *
8.4
12.7
-51%
14
-67%
10.9
-30%
9.7
-15%
Load Average *
76.5
64
16%
114
-49%
72
6%
79.9
-4%
Load Maximum *
106
146.6
-38%
164
-55%
130.4
-23%
121.5
-15%
Witcher 3 ultra *
93
105
-13%
131
-41%
97.4
-5%
97.7
-5%

* ... smaller is better

Battery Life

The Y520-15IKBA has acceptable battery life. Our test device lasted five hours and thirty-three minutes during our practical Wi-Fi test, during which we run a script that simulates the load required to render websites. This puts the Y520-15IKBA 27% ahead of the class average and 28% ahead of its powerful Y520 sibling. By contrast, the Alienware 13 R3 lasted 38% longer at over seven and a half hours.

Battery Runtime
NBC WiFi Websurfing Battery Test 1.3
5h 33min
Lenovo Legion Y520-15IKBA-80WY001VGE
7300HQ, Radeon RX 560 (Laptop), 45 Wh
Alienware 13 R3 (i5-7300HQ, GTX 1050 Ti)
7300HQ, GeForce GTX 1050 Ti (Laptop), 76 Wh
Schenker XMG Apex 15
8700, GeForce GTX 1060 (Laptop), 62 Wh
Dell Inspiron 15 7000 7577 4K
7700HQ, GeForce GTX 1060 Max-Q, 56 Wh
Lenovo Legion Y520-15IKBN-80WK001KUS
7700HQ, GeForce GTX 1050 Ti (Laptop), 45 Wh
Average of class Gaming
 
Battery Runtime
WiFi v1.3
333
460
38%
334
0%
322
-3%
240
-28%
255 (78 - 622, n=355)
-23%

Verdict

Pros

+ solid CPU and GPU performance
+ good input devices
+ affordable price
+ good maintenance options
+ decent design

Cons

- average colour space accuracy
- mediocre brightness and contrast
- slow HDD
Test device courtesy of notebooksbilliger.de
Test device courtesy of notebooksbilliger.de

The Lenovo Legion Y520-15IKBA is a viable gaming notebook that is useful outside of just playing games. At just over €700 (~$817), the device is a good choice for those on a tight budget.

The Lenovo Legion Y520-15IKBA is a gaming notebook that is priced competitively for the performance it offers. Lenovo has compromised on some components though to keep the price around €700 (~$817).

Lenovo’s compromises are noticeable. Both Wi-Fi and system performance suffer from cheap components. This is especially the case with the HDD, which considerably slows the system down compared with the performance from an SSD. Fortunately, the Y520-15IKBA is easy to maintain, so an SSD or better Wi-Fi module could easily be retrofitted.

Lenovo Legion Y520-15IKBA-80WY001VGE - 05/17/2018 v6(old)
Mike Wobker

Chassis
71 / 98 → 73%
Keyboard
78%
Pointing Device
83%
Connectivity
48 / 81 → 59%
Weight
60 / 10-66 → 89%
Battery
85%
Display
84%
Games Performance
78%
Application Performance
80%
Temperature
94 / 95 → 99%
Noise
91 / 90 → 100%
Audio
55%
Camera
42 / 85 → 50%
Average
73%
78%
Gaming - Weighted Average

Pricecompare

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> Notebook / Laptop Reviews and News > Reviews > Lenovo Legion Y520-15IKBA (i5-7300HQ, RX 560) Laptop Review
Mike Wobker, 2018-05-23 (Update: 2019-03-11)
Alex Alderson
Alex Alderson - News Editor - @aldersonaj
Prior to writing and translating for Notebookcheck, I worked for various companies including and Apple Neowin. I have a BA in International History and Politics from the University of Leeds, which I have since converted to a Law Degree. Happy to chat on Twitter or Notebookchat.