Notebookcheck

Lenovo ThinkPad E470 (Core i5, GeForce 940MX) Notebook Review

Till Schönborn (translated by Maria Vittoria Occhipinti), 01/12/2017

Small Update, Big Impact? The ThinkPad E470 is the latest addition to the popular Lenovo business series. This entry-level model of the E-series uses a 7th generation Intel Core processor and promises more performance and battery life. All of this for an attractive price. Is the quality still up to par?

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For the original German review, see here.

The Intel Kaby Lake processors have been popular in the past few months and we have seen them in many laptops. Due to longer product cycles and higher development and testing costs in the business sector, the new Kaby Lake processors are just now entering the business laptop segment.

Lenovo has taken its time building the next instalment of the ThinkPad series, but now the Chinese manufacturer is ready to show the 14-inch ThinkPad E470 (less than 600 Euros/~$638 for students) to the world. The laptop does not include an operating system, but we were surprised to see the diverse features offered in the most basic configurations of this model: an i3 processor, 8 GB of RAM, a 256 GB SSD and an FHD IPS panel. Our test configuration is available for roughly 700 Euros (~$745) with a stronger Core i5 CPU and a dedicated GeForce 940MX GPU. This system should pack more power for gaming enthusiasts. There are more configurations available and the buyer should be able to find what they are looking for.

For comparison purposes, we will be including competitors of the ThinkPad E470 in this review. We have selected the HP ProBook 440 G4 and the Acer TravelMate P249-M, as they both belong to the business segment and use the new Kaby Lake platform.

ThinkPad E470 (20H2S00500) ThinkPad E470 (20H2S00400) ThinkPad E470 (20H2S00700)
Core i3-7100U Core i5-7200U Core i7-7500U
8 GB DDR4-RAM 8 GB DDR4-RAM 16 GB DDR4-RAM
256 GB SSD 256 GB SSD 256 GB SSD
HD Graphics 620 GeForce 940MX GeForce 940MX
1,920 x 1,080 pixels, IPS panel 1,920 x 1,080 pixels, IPS panel 1,920 x 1,080 pixels, IPS panel
no OS no OS no OS
570 Euro 680 Euro 800 Euro
Lenovo ThinkPad E470-20H2S00400 (ThinkPad E470 Series)
Processor
Graphics adapter
NVIDIA GeForce 940MX - 2048 MB, Core: 1122 MHz, Memory: 2000 MHz, DDR3, ForceWare 369.32, Optimus
Memory
8192 MB 
, 1x 8 GB DDR4-2133, 1 of 2 slots occupied
Display
14 inch 16:9, 1920x1080 pixel 157 PPI, N140HCA-EAB, IPS, LED backlight, glossy: no
Mainboard
Intel Kaby Lake-U Premium PCH
Storage
SanDisk X400 SED 256GB, SATA (SD8TB8U-256G), 256 GB 
Soundcard
Intel Kaby Lake-U/Y PCH - High Definition Audio
Connections
1 USB 2.0, 2 USB 3.0 / 3.1 Gen1, 1 HDMI, 1 Kensington Lock, Audio Connections: Headset jack (3.5 mm jack), Card Reader: SD, MMC
Networking
Realtek RTL8168/8111 Gigabit-LAN (10/100/1000MBit), Atheros/Qualcomm QCA6174 (a/b/g/n/ac), Bluetooth 4.1
Size
height x width x depth (in mm): 23.7 x 339 x 242 ( = 0.93 x 13.35 x 9.53 in)
Battery
45 Wh Lithium-Ion, integrated
Camera
Webcam: 0.9 MP
Additional features
Speakers: Stereo, Keyboard: Chiclet, Keyboard Light: no, 65 W power adapter, 12 Months Warranty
Weight
1.87 kg ( = 65.96 oz / 4.12 pounds), Power Supply: 330 g ( = 11.64 oz / 0.73 pounds)
Price
680 Euro

 

Case

The case is covered with matte, black material, which will remind users of the traditional Lenovo look. The E470 has a simple yet functional design, which is slightly different from that of the predecessor, the E460: the form of the display hinges and the placement of the power button have changed. This is mainly fine tuning on the part of the manufacturer and will not significantly improve the user experience.

Considering modern mobility standards, the E470 has poor mobility as it weighs 1.9 kg (~4.2 lb) and is 24 mm (~0.94 in) thick. High-end models, such as the T460s (1.35 kg/~3 lb), 19 mm/~0.75 in), and direct competitors such as the HP model (ProBook 440 G4: 1.65 kg/~3.6 lb, 20 mm/~0.78 in), are alternatives which offer better mobility. Nevertheless, Lenovo has managed to create a very resistant case, without using light metal materials. The display cover should be a little thicker, but at the end of the day, the manufacturer has done a good job. The new central hinge is ideal, as it always keeps a firm grip on the display, which can be turned up to 180 degrees.

In terms of workmanship, Lenovo has provided us with an almost flawless test model: small and even material gaps with clean and rounded corners. This is definitely a big plus for this price segment.

Analysis of measurements and weight with comparison to competitors.

Size Comparison

Connectivity

Sadly, the E series still refuses to take on the modern USB Type-C ports. The test model relies on 3x Type-A USB ports (2x USB 3.0, 1x USB 2.0). Furthermore, the laptop lacks a DisplayPort interface. These deficits are understandable if you consider the costs of these features and their suitability for the target audience. Potential buyers should know that the HDMI 1.4 interface can only output to a 4K display at 30 Hz. Officially, Lenovo only specifies support for 1920x1080 pixels (at 60 Hz).

Due to the displacement of the ventilation opening, all ports have been moved to new locations. The new layout is well-suited for right-hand users, as most cables (power adapter, Ethernet, HDMI) will be found in the rear left region of the laptop.

Power outlet, Gbit-LAN, HDMI, USB 3.0
Power outlet, Gbit-LAN, HDMI, USB 3.0
SD/MMC reader, Headset jack, USB 3.0, USB 2.0, Kensington Lock
SD/MMC reader, Headset jack, USB 3.0, USB 2.0, Kensington Lock

SD Card Reader

Depending on the file size, the maximum transfer rate of the SD card reader (tested with a Toshiba Exceria Pro SDXC 64 GB UHS-II) stays around 70 to 80 MB/s. This is a decent result, which places our test model between the low-end models with a USB 2.0 reader (max. roughly 30 MB/s) and premium notebooks with UHS II support (200 MB/s and more).

SDCardreader Transfer Speed
average JPG Copy Test (av. of 3 runs)
HP ProBook 440 G4-Y8B51EA
74.3 MB/s ∼100% +10%
Lenovo ThinkPad E460-20EUS00000
73.2 MB/s ∼99% +9%
Lenovo ThinkPad E470-20H2S00400
67.3 MB/s ∼91%
Acer TravelMate P249-M-5452
17.3 MB/s ∼23% -74%
maximum AS SSD Seq Read Test (1GB)
HP ProBook 440 G4-Y8B51EA
85.9 MB/s ∼100% +6%
Lenovo ThinkPad E460-20EUS00000
85.1 MB/s ∼99% +5%
Lenovo ThinkPad E470-20H2S00400
81.04 MB/s ∼94%

Communication

We were surprised to see that our ThinkPad did not use an Intel wireless adapter. Rather, the manufacturer has chosen a Qualcomm adapter. This module supports Bluetooth 4.1 and all typical WLAN standards in the 2.4 and 5 GHz frequency. Thanks to the Dual-Stream technology (2x2 TX/RX), it should be possible to reach transfer rates of up to 866 Mb/s in 802.11ac networks. In our tests, with optimal conditions (short distance to the router LinkSys EA8500), the test model reached around 600 MB/s while receiving data. This puts the E470 amongst the best laptops for wireless performance and only a few models can claim to do a better job: (Apple-) devices with Triple-Stream technology.

Networking
iperf Server (receive) TCP 1 m
Lenovo ThinkPad E470-20H2S00400
Atheros/Qualcomm QCA6174
597 MBit/s ∼100%
HP ProBook 440 G4-Y8B51EA
Intel Dual Band Wireless-AC 7265
536 MBit/s ∼90% -10%
Acer TravelMate P249-M-5452
Intel Dual Band Wireless-AC 7265
92 MBit/s ∼15% -85%
iperf Client (transmit) TCP 1 m
HP ProBook 440 G4-Y8B51EA
Intel Dual Band Wireless-AC 7265
447 MBit/s ∼100% +19%
Lenovo ThinkPad E470-20H2S00400
Atheros/Qualcomm QCA6174
377 MBit/s ∼84%
Acer TravelMate P249-M-5452
Intel Dual Band Wireless-AC 7265
91 MBit/s ∼20% -76%

Security

As this is an entry-level model, the E470 lacks many security features, like NFC, smartcard reader or vPro support. In fact, a fingerprint reader is only available in certain configurations and is missing from our test model. Users must rely on rudimentary security measures, such as Kensington Lock and passwords (Power-On, hard disk, BIOS).

Accessories

Aside from the mandatory power adapter (65 W), Lenovo has little more to offer in the E470 delivery. The list of optional accessories is quite short and mostly includes peripherals, bags and docking stations (via USB 3.0). No dedicated docking stations are provided.

Maintenance

Limited upgrade options
Limited upgrade options

After removing three screws, the user can take off the bottom of the laptop. Sadly, there are not that many upgrade options for the test model: a free memory slot would offer support for another DDR4 module. Other slots are occupied (1x M.2/E-Key for WLAN, 1x 2.5" SSD). We expected at least 1 or 2 additional M.2 slots for further SSDs or an LTE module (like many competitors offer). We like the battery (screwed in but still removable) and the accessible fan (for cleaning).

Warranty

The warranty is limited to 12 months "Bring-In" service. This service can be extended for a little more money. An upgrade up to 3 years would cost 65 Euros (~$69) and with an "On-Site" service the price would be around 80 Euros (~$85).

Input Devices

Keyboard

The great quality of the keyboard has been one of the strongest selling points of ThinkPad models for years. The E-series is no exception. Once the user gets used to the slightly different Lenovo layout (Fn and CTRL keys swapped, can be changed in BIOS), typing becomes a joy, thanks to the strong yet crisp impact of the keys. The keyboard does not deform even when we start typing very fast. Every key press felt mechanical, but the clicking noise was relatively quiet.

Although the keyboard seems the same as the ones in other ThinkPad models, there are a few differences between the E, L or T series: in a direct comparison, the pressure point of the twice-as-expensive T460(s) is more satisfactory and the material of the keys is of a better quality. The high-end models also have a 2-level lighting system for the keys, which is lacking in the E470.

Touchpad

The third generation of the E400 series uses the UltraNav system: a touchpad and a TrackPoint with corresponding keys. The ClickPad was poor at first, but after several iterations, it has been refined to the point that the two integrated buttons are crisp. The user no longer displaces the mouse cursor when pressing the buttons. Finger movement on this surface (10 x 5.6 cm/~4 x 2.2 in) is comfortable and the pad supports all types of multi-touch gestures with up to 4 fingers.

Alternatively, the user can use the classic TrackPoint, which almost no other manufacturer except Lenovo employs. The soft-clicking buttons (including the scroll button) combined with the TrackPoint provide an entirely different experience to the touchpad. Users can choose between either of the two input devices for their work.

Keyboard
Keyboard
Touchpad
Touchpad

Display

Subpixel grid
Subpixel grid

According to the specifications, the E470 should have a TN panel with a WXGA resolution (1366x768 pixels). However, all the configurations available in our country use high-quality IPS panels with an FHD resolution (1920x1,080 pixels). The FHD panel offers a sharper display (157 instead of 112 PPI) and higher brightness (250 instead of 220 cd/m²). The viewing angles are also wider. In our opinion, nearly twice-as-large workspace of the FHD panel is worth the extra price.

Unfortunately, we could not confirm the brightness values Lenovo claimed the test model would offer: instead of 250 cd/m², our test model reaches only 231 cd/m². This might be a relatively decent value compared to other models and does work well for indoor use, but in the outdoors, the user will wish for higher brightness. At least the display is evenly lit (slight clouding on the right bottom corner) and the panel has no PWM flickering.

231
cd/m²
218
cd/m²
225
cd/m²
238
cd/m²
244
cd/m²
235
cd/m²
236
cd/m²
224
cd/m²
229
cd/m²
Distribution of brightness
X-Rite i1Pro 2
Maximum: 244 cd/m² Average: 231.1 cd/m² Minimum: 3 cd/m²
Brightness Distribution: 89 %
Center on Battery: 242 cd/m²
Contrast: 659:1 (Black: 0.37 cd/m²)
ΔE Color 6.41 | - Ø
ΔE Greyscale 5.94 | - Ø
61.1% sRGB (Argyll) 39.3% AdobeRGB 1998 (Argyll)
Gamma: 2.28
Lenovo ThinkPad E470-20H2S00400
N140HCA-EAB, , 1920x1080, 14
Lenovo ThinkPad E460-20EUS00000
LG LP140WF6-SPB2, , 1920x1080, 14
HP ProBook 440 G4-Y8B51EA
AUO1E3D, , 1920x1080, 14
Acer TravelMate P249-M-5452
Chi Mei N140HGE-EAA, , 1920x1080, 14
Lenovo ThinkPad T460s-20FA003GGE
VVX14T058J02, , 2560x1440, 14
Response Times
13%
7%
20%
9%
Response Time Grey 50% / Grey 80% *
40.8 (22, 18.8)
40 (17, 23)
2%
43.2 (21.2, 22)
-6%
44 (23, 21)
-8%
35.6 (17.2, 18.4)
13%
Response Time Black / White *
30.4 (8.4, 22)
23.2 (6.8, 16.4)
24%
24.4 (7.2, 17.2)
20%
16 (10, 6)
47%
29.2 (14.4, 14.8)
4%
PWM Frequency
50 (10)
220 (90)
Screen
11%
-24%
-18%
30%
Brightness
231
221
-4%
203
-12%
238
3%
248
7%
Brightness Distribution
89
88
-1%
83
-7%
87
-2%
94
6%
Black Level *
0.37
0.3
19%
0.47
-27%
0.41
-11%
0.26
30%
Contrast
659
777
18%
460
-30%
607
-8%
988
50%
Colorchecker DeltaE2000 *
6.41
4.43
31%
8.98
-40%
9.09
-42%
4.59
28%
Greyscale DeltaE2000 *
5.94
3.78
36%
9.61
-62%
9.92
-67%
6.38
-7%
Gamma
2.28 105%
2.31 104%
2.63 91%
2.42 99%
2.51 96%
CCT
6101 107%
7171 91%
11265 58%
11177 58%
6238 104%
Color Space (Percent of AdobeRGB 1998)
39.3
37.3
-5%
35.9
-9%
36.5
-7%
65
65%
Color Space (Percent of sRGB)
61.1
58.7
-4%
56.7
-7%
56.7
-7%
98
60%
Total Average (Program / Settings)
12% / 12%
-9% / -18%
1% / -10%
20% / 26%

* ... smaller is better

AdobeRGB coverage (39.3%)
AdobeRGB coverage (39.3%)
sRGB coverage (61.1%)
sRGB coverage (61.1%)

What the panel lacks in brightness, it makes up for with a high contrast. The satisfactory black value of 0.37 cd/m² results in a decent contrast of 659:1 (more than the one Lenovo specifies - 400:1). Although the market offers better IPS displays, with contrast values of 1000:1 and above, our test model does a good job for its price. Subjectively, the display provides satisfactory colors when playing movies or games (but the predecessor performs at a similar level).

In terms of color accuracy, the differences between our model and a higher-quality display become more tangible. The E470 is not designed for professional graphics editing, due to its limited color space coverage. At around 61% sRGB and 39% AdobeRGB coverage, the display is not able to provide a visual difference between the highest levels of blue and magenta. The Delta-E deviations can reach up to 10 or above on the CIE charts in these specific sections (ideally 3 or less). Calibration will not solve this problem. Thankfully, the display does not have any blue tinges.

Grey levels (uncalibrated)
Grey levels (uncalibrated)
Color accuracy (uncalibrated)
Color accuracy (uncalibrated)
Saturation (uncalibrated)
Saturation (uncalibrated)
Grey levels (calibrated)
Grey levels (calibrated)
Color accuracy (calibrated)
Color accuracy (calibrated)
Saturation (calibrated)
Saturation (calibrated)

Thanks to the matte display of the ThinkPad, the laptop does not need very high levels of brightness to be comfortably legible outdoors. Nevertheless, we think that users would have appreciated at least 300 cd/m² for outdoor use, especially on sunny days. On cloudy days, the test model will be legible, but in direct sunlight, it will be hard to recognize anything on this screen.

Outdoors
Outdoors

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
30.4 ms ... rise ↗ and fall ↘ combined↗ 8.4 ms rise
↘ 22 ms fall
The screen shows slow response rates in our tests and will be unsatisfactory for gamers.
In comparison, all tested devices range from 0.8 (minimum) to 240 (maximum) ms. » 76 % of all devices are better.
This means that the measured response time is worse than the average of all tested devices (26.9 ms).
       Response Time 50% Grey to 80% Grey
40.8 ms ... rise ↗ and fall ↘ combined↗ 22 ms rise
↘ 18.8 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. » 46 % of all devices are better.
This means that the measured response time is similar to the average of all tested devices (43 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 not detected

In comparison: 58 % of all tested devices do not use PWM to dim the display. If PWM was detected, an average of 5519 (minimum: 43 - maximum: 142900) Hz was measured.

Viewing angles of the Lenovo ThinkPad E470
Viewing angles of the Lenovo ThinkPad E470

The IPS panel ensures that users can view the contents from all angles. Horizontal and vertical viewing angles of up to 45 degrees do not cause any visual changes on the display. At larger angles or from directly above, the contrast starts dropping. At the end of the day, the display of the E470 is good for its price.

Performance

3.1 GHz max Turbo
3.1 GHz max Turbo

Currently, the Intel Kaby Lake product range encompasses 3 ULV processors: the Core i3-7100U, the i5-7200U and the i7-7500U. All three CPUs are offered by Lenovo for ThinkPad E470. Our test model runs on the i5 processor, which is placed between the other two in terms of price. It runs at 2.5 GHz basic clock speed and up to 3.1 GHz with Turbo. It is reminiscent of the older Skylake Core i7-6500U, which was made with a 14 nanometer finish. In short: for the same price, the Kaby Lake generation can offer more performance than its predecessor. The TDP value of this class has been kept the same: 15 W.

In addition to the integrated graphics chip, the HD Graphics 620, the laptop offers a dedicated graphics GPU, the Nvidia GeForce 940MX. This GPU runs on the older GM108, which is a 28 nm chip from the Maxwell generation. Although it has only 384 shaders and a small 64-bit memory interface with the integrated DDR3 RAM, the 940MX can offer up to 50% more performance when compared to the integrated graphics chip. The Optimus technology allows the laptop to automatically switch between the HD Graphics 620 and the Nvidia GeForce 940MX GPU when graphics performance is needed or when the laptop needs to save power.

The E470 wants to focus on fast flash memory for storage purposes. In this case, the laptop uses an SSD with  a capacity of 256 GB. This should be sufficient for most users. The same is true for the 8 GB DDR4 memory. Although there is a free RAM slot available inside the laptop and it is possible to install a second 8 GB module, the relatively high DRAM prices will curb most upgrade possibilities.

Processor

Full Turbo in Single- and Multithreading
Full Turbo in Single- and Multithreading

On the CPU side, the Kaby Lake generation sets itself apart from the predecessor, Skylake, thanks to the slightly higher base and Turbo clock speeds. These increases are due to the further refinement of the architecture. It is worth mentioning that the Core i5-7200U and the faster i7-7500U can use their full Turbo Boost for all cores, even at full load. As usual, the typical limitations, such as power consumption and temperature levels, apply to these processors.

In the case of the Core i5-7200U in our test model, the performance was never lacking: whether single or Multithreading, the maximum clock speed of 3.1 GHz was offered in every situation. This is also true when the laptop is running on battery. Compared with the Core i5-6200U from last year, the performance has increased by 10 to 15%. The current top model, the Core i7-7500U, performs around 10% faster. Buyers should consider whether this performance increase is worth the price increase.

Cinebench R15
CPU Single 64Bit
HP ProBook 450 G4 Y8B60EA
Intel Core i7-7500U
146 Points ∼75% +13%
HP ProBook 440 G4-Y8B51EA
Intel Core i7-7500U
145 Points ∼74% +12%
Lenovo ThinkPad T460s-20FA003GGE
Intel Core i7-6600U
141 Points ∼72% +9%
Lenovo ThinkPad E560 20EV000XPB
Intel Core i7-6500U
132 Points ∼68% +2%
Lenovo ThinkPad E470-20H2S00400
Intel Core i5-7200U
129 Points ∼66%
Acer TravelMate P249-M-5452
Intel Core i5-6200U
117 Points ∼60% -9%
Lenovo ThinkPad E460-20EUS00000
Intel Core i5-6200U
114 Points ∼58% -12%
CPU Multi 64Bit
HP ProBook 450 G4 Y8B60EA
Intel Core i7-7500U
355 Points ∼17% +7%
Lenovo ThinkPad T460s-20FA003GGE
Intel Core i7-6600U
347 Points ∼16% +5%
HP ProBook 440 G4-Y8B51EA
Intel Core i7-7500U
335 Points ∼16% +1%
Lenovo ThinkPad E470-20H2S00400
Intel Core i5-7200U
331 Points ∼15%
Lenovo ThinkPad E560 20EV000XPB
Intel Core i7-6500U
305 Points ∼14% -8%
Acer TravelMate P249-M-5452
Intel Core i5-6200U
294 Points ∼14% -11%
Lenovo ThinkPad E460-20EUS00000
Intel Core i5-6200U
290 Points ∼14% -12%
Cinebench R11.5 CPU Multi 64Bit
3.7 Points
Cinebench R11.5 CPU Single 64Bit
1.48 Points
Cinebench R11.5 OpenGL 64Bit
46.75 fps
Cinebench R15 CPU Single 64Bit
129 Points
Cinebench R15 CPU Multi 64Bit
331 Points
Cinebench R15 OpenGL 64Bit
50.34 fps
Cinebench R15 Ref. Match 64Bit
99.6 %
Help

Storage Device

AS-SSD-Benchmark
AS-SSD-Benchmark

Our test model uses a SanDisk SSD. The storage device of the current X400 series is made in the 2.5-inch format and offers a capacity of 256 GB. SanDisk advertises the series as high-performance, conservative and reliable. The latter is hard to prove. The performance is quite good, despite the TLC flash memory: at roughly 500 MB/s read and 400 MB/s write rate (both sequential), the drive is reaching the limits of the SATA interface. In comparison to the Samsung CM871 SSD of the predecessor, the E460, the write rate and speed of multiple, simultaneous transactions on the drive has increased significantly. An NVMe SSD connected with a PCIe interface, as in the T460s, would have been even faster, but the E470 does not include an appropriate slot.

Lenovo ThinkPad E470-20H2S00400
SanDisk X400 SED 256GB, SATA (SD8TB8U-256G)
Lenovo ThinkPad E460-20EUS00000
Samsung CM871 MZ7LF192HCGS
HP ProBook 440 G4-Y8B51EA
SanDisk SD8SNAT256G1002
Acer TravelMate P249-M-5452
SK Hynix HFS256G39TND-N210A
Lenovo ThinkPad T460s-20FA003GGE
Samsung SSD SM951a 512GB M.2 PCIe 3.0 x4 NVMe (MZVKV512)
CrystalDiskMark 3.0
-45%
-12%
8%
187%
Write 4k QD32
178.3
37.26
-79%
241.4
35%
266.4
49%
277
55%
Read 4k QD32
276
95.67
-65%
146.3
-47%
392.8
42%
561.3
103%
Write 4k
78.82
37.13
-53%
77.85
-1%
95.9
22%
139.3
77%
Read 4k
35.15
18.91
-46%
19.57
-44%
33.12
-6%
51.35
46%
Write 512
291.1
169.1
-42%
276
-5%
267.5
-8%
1506
417%
Read 512
346.4
297.1
-14%
310.1
-10%
347.6
0%
1339
287%
Write Seq
458.7
180
-61%
322.2
-30%
267.2
-42%
1530
234%
Read Seq
476.5
497.6
4%
491.2
3%
509.6
7%
1778
273%
SanDisk X400 SED 256GB, SATA (SD8TB8U-256G)
Sequential Read: 476.5 MB/s
Sequential Write: 458.7 MB/s
512K Read: 346.4 MB/s
512K Write: 291.1 MB/s
4K Read: 35.15 MB/s
4K Write: 78.82 MB/s
4K QD32 Read: 276 MB/s
4K QD32 Write: 178.3 MB/s

System Performance

As expected, the combination of the fast Core i5 processor and a quick SSD produces a reliable and responsive system. To be honest, the increases in the CPU and storage device speeds (in comparison to the predecessor) do not make much of a difference in everyday use. As such, a switch, from the E460 to the test model, would not be worth the investment for most users. As mentioned previously, the Core i7-7500U is more expensive, but the performance difference is not significant. The money saved here could be used for a larger SSD.

PCMark 8
Work Score Accelerated v2
HP ProBook 440 G4-Y8B51EA
GeForce 930MX, 7500U, SanDisk SD8SNAT256G1002
4837 Points ∼74% +4%
Lenovo ThinkPad E470-20H2S00400
GeForce 940MX, 7200U, SanDisk X400 SED 256GB, SATA (SD8TB8U-256G)
4642 Points ∼71%
Acer TravelMate P249-M-5452
HD Graphics 520, 6200U, SK Hynix HFS256G39TND-N210A
4463 Points ∼69% -4%
Lenovo ThinkPad T460s-20FA003GGE
HD Graphics 520, 6600U, Samsung SSD SM951a 512GB M.2 PCIe 3.0 x4 NVMe (MZVKV512)
4442 Points ∼68% -4%
Lenovo ThinkPad E460-20EUS00000
Radeon R7 M360, 6200U, Samsung CM871 MZ7LF192HCGS
4415 Points ∼68% -5%
Home Score Accelerated v2
HP ProBook 440 G4-Y8B51EA
GeForce 930MX, 7500U, SanDisk SD8SNAT256G1002
3614 Points ∼60% +2%
Lenovo ThinkPad E470-20H2S00400
GeForce 940MX, 7200U, SanDisk X400 SED 256GB, SATA (SD8TB8U-256G)
3546 Points ∼59%
Lenovo ThinkPad T460s-20FA003GGE
HD Graphics 520, 6600U, Samsung SSD SM951a 512GB M.2 PCIe 3.0 x4 NVMe (MZVKV512)
3542 Points ∼59% 0%
Acer TravelMate P249-M-5452
HD Graphics 520, 6200U, SK Hynix HFS256G39TND-N210A
3472 Points ∼58% -2%
Lenovo ThinkPad E460-20EUS00000
Radeon R7 M360, 6200U, Samsung CM871 MZ7LF192HCGS
3415 Points ∼57% -4%
PCMark 8 Home Score Accelerated v2
3546 points
PCMark 8 Creative Score Accelerated v2
4389 points
PCMark 8 Work Score Accelerated v2
4642 points
Help

Graphics Card

Graphics switch
Graphics switch

The E460 used a dedicated AMD GPU. Lenovo relies on an Nvidia GPU for the new model. In our synthetic 3D benchmarks, the GeForce 940MX performs 30 to 60% faster than the older Radeon R7 M360, but it seems that it also needs more power. The upcoming Nvidia Pascal chip GP108 should offer more performance with the same or lower power consumption.

The GeForce 940MX is around 1.5x faster than the HD Graphics 620 (with Dual-Channel memory). This is a worthwhile upgrade. If you regularly run 3D games or demanding programs, the additional performance will be a blessing. The integrated graphics processor is strong enough for simple multimedia tasks, like high-resolution 4K videos in the H.265 codec.

3DMark 11 - 1280x720 Performance GPU
Lenovo ThinkPad E470-20H2S00400
NVIDIA GeForce 940MX, Intel Core i5-7200U
2556 Points ∼100%
HP ProBook 440 G4-Y8B51EA
NVIDIA GeForce 930MX, Intel Core i7-7500U
2206 Points ∼86% -14%
Lenovo ThinkPad E460-20EUS00000
AMD Radeon R7 M360, Intel Core i5-6200U
1989 Points ∼78% -22%
Intel Kaby Lake i7-7500U / HD Graphics 620
Intel HD Graphics 620, Intel Core i7-7500U
1663 Points ∼65% -35%
Acer TravelMate P249-M-5452
Intel HD Graphics 520, Intel Core i5-6200U
1343 Points ∼53% -47%
3DMark - 1920x1080 Fire Strike Graphics
Lenovo ThinkPad E470-20H2S00400
NVIDIA GeForce 940MX, Intel Core i5-7200U
1752 Points ∼100%
HP ProBook 440 G4-Y8B51EA
NVIDIA GeForce 930MX, Intel Core i7-7500U
1621 Points ∼93% -7%
Intel Kaby Lake i7-7500U / HD Graphics 620
Intel HD Graphics 620, Intel Core i7-7500U
1128 Points ∼64% -36%
Lenovo ThinkPad E460-20EUS00000
AMD Radeon R7 M360, Intel Core i5-6200U
1109 Points ∼63% -37%
Acer TravelMate P249-M-5452
Intel HD Graphics 520, Intel Core i5-6200U
786 Points ∼45% -55%
3DMark 11 Performance
2642 points
3DMark Ice Storm Standard Score
42449 points
3DMark Cloud Gate Standard Score
6759 points
3DMark Fire Strike Score
1528 points
Help

Gaming Performance

Despite the dedicated graphics card, E470 buyers should be aware that they cannot run all games smoothly on this laptop. Demanding 3D games, such as “Deus Ex”, stutter even with a resolution of 1280x720 pixels. The ThinkPad is definitely not a gaming laptop. Older, less-demanding games, such as “Counter-Strike”, “Diablo 3”, “Overwatch” or “Sims 4”, run quite well and the resolution and the level of details can be increased. Detailed benchmarks and other games can be found in our database.

low med. high ultra
BioShock Infinite (2013) 92.453.143.115.1fps
Battlefield 4 (2013) 65.846.731.212.1fps
Sims 4 (2014) 150.668.941.429.9fps
Deus Ex Mankind Divided (2016) 2416.58.5fps

Emissions

Noise characteristics fan (idle, full load)
Noise characteristics fan (idle, full load)

System Noise

Like most office notebooks, the E470 runs without active cooling while tackling everyday tasks. Furthermore, thanks to the SSD, the system runs silently. If you put your ear to the notebook, you can hear a slight electric humming, but this should not be audible at a distance.

With 3D load, the emissions reach 36 to 38 dB(A) and is around 3 dB(A) louder than the predecessor. This is another indication that the performance of the laptop has increased. This means that the ThinkPad is audible in quiet environments, but it is not distractingly loud.

Noise Level

Idle
29 / 29 / 29 dB(A)
Load
35.6 / 38.5 dB(A)
 
 
 
30 dB
silent
40 dB(A)
audible
50 dB(A)
loud
 
min: dark, med: mid, max: light   ECM8000 + Voltcraft SL-451 (15 cm distance)   environment noise: 29 dB(A)

Temperature

Stresstest
Stresstest

The redesigned cooling system pushes the heat emissions out of the back, instead of the sides. This ensures that, even at full load, the hand-rest regions stay cool. Although the user will not encounter any hotspots near the front of the laptop, the back certainly gets hot: the case can hit up to 53 °C (~127 °F) near the rear. We recommend not operating the E470 on the lap while playing games or running demanding tasks.

In our synthetic stress test (Prime95 + FurMark), the hardware of the laptop hits high temperatures: up to 86 °C (~187 °F/GPU) and 92 °C (~198 °F/CPU). However, the hardware keeps running at full speed. The CPU runs slightly under its Turbo specification of 3.1 GHz due to the TDP limitation (15 W: 3.0 GHz). In everyday use, the ThinkPad should not be troubled by throttling issues.

Max. Load
 33.9 °C43.8 °C38.7 °C 
 32.6 °C42.3 °C30.5 °C 
 25.5 °C23.9 °C25.2 °C 
Maximum: 43.8 °C
Average: 32.9 °C
44.8 °C53 °C32.2 °C
30.5 °C45.6 °C28.8 °C
25.3 °C25.3 °C25 °C
Maximum: 53 °C
Average: 34.5 °C
Power Supply (max.)  41.1 °C | Room Temperature 19.9 °C | Fluke 62 Max

Speakers

The stereo speakers are relatively loud (85 dB(A)), but the sound quality is modest. The speakers can fill a room well and offer high notes. However, the deep middle notes and the bass need work. The sound output is sufficient for Skype or YouTube videos, but music fans will opt for the audio out interfaces. The HDMI interface or 3.5 mm audio jack will allow output to speakers or headphones (no disturbance and suitable for high-impedance headphones).

dB(A) 0102030405060708090Deep BassMiddle BassHigh BassLower RangeMidsHigher MidsLower HighsMid HighsUpper HighsSuper Highs2035.134.42544.444.73138.340.14049.746.85042.139.76331.734.78028.931.11003433.112532.534.316024.944.220026.552.625025.658.331528.357.240023.66150021.564.163020.762.38002080100019.476.2125019.577.6160019.172.9200018.973.7250018.671.931501968.3400020.263500021.368.2630019.470.7800019.761.11000020.858.41250020.454.71600020.149.5SPL32.884.9N1.957.6median 20.4Lenovo ThinkPad E470-20H2S00400median 62.3Delta2.68.435.335.132.931.831.83236.535.132.428.93328.936.328.848.32761.52752.924.860.92462.822.763.32269.521.267.82174.82075.919.472.718.97117.770.117.86917.671.817.668.117.671.417.673.717.670.417.571.617.671.617.669.617.459.717.583.630.662.51.5median 69.6Apple MacBook 12 (Early 2016) 1.1 GHzmedian 17.84.62.4hearing rangehide median Pink Noise
Lenovo ThinkPad E470-20H2S00400 audio analysis

(+) | speakers can play relatively loud (84.8 dB)
Bass 100 - 315 Hz
(-) | nearly no bass - on average 15.7% lower than median
(±) | linearity of bass is average (11.2% delta to prev. frequency)
Mids 400 - 2000 Hz
(±) | higher mids - on average 9% higher than median
(±) | linearity of mids is average (11.1% delta to prev. frequency)
Highs 2 - 16 kHz
(±) | higher highs - on average 5.1% higher than median
(±) | linearity of highs is average (10.5% delta to prev. frequency)
Overall 100 - 16.000 Hz
(±) | linearity of overall sound is average (23% difference to median)
Compared to same class
» 63% of all tested devices in this class were better, 8% similar, 29% worse
» The best had a delta of 12%, average was 21%, worst was 48%
Compared to all devices tested
» 56% of all tested devices were better, 8% similar, 36% worse
» The best had a delta of 3%, average was 22%, 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
» 2% of all tested devices in this class were better, 2% similar, 97% worse
» The best had a delta of 9%, average was 19%, worst was 41%
Compared to all devices tested
» 2% of all tested devices were better, 1% similar, 98% worse
» The best had a delta of 3%, average was 22%, worst was 53%

Frequency diagram for comparison (checkboxes above can be selected!)

Energy Management

Power Consumption

The E460 was quite conservative while idle (4.1 to 8.9 W). Yet somehow Lenovo has managed to drop the consumption of the E470 even further: 2.7 to 6.5 W while idle. This makes our test model one of the most conservative laptops of its class.

At full load, the consumption is a little higher: while running 3D games, the ThinkPad needs 45 W (10% more than the predecessor). However, when we consider the increased CPU and GPU performance, this increase seems reasonable. This positive impression is further strengthened when one considers how well Lenovo has managed the heat and noise emissions of the hardware. The included 65-W power adapter covers the needs of the laptop well.

Power Consumption
Off / Standbydarklight 0.32 / 0.7 Watt
Idledarkmidlight 2.7 / 5.5 / 6.5 Watt
Load midlight 44.2 / 65.2 Watt
 color bar
Key: min: dark, med: mid, max: light        Metrahit Energy
Lenovo ThinkPad E470-20H2S00400
7200U, GeForce 940MX, SanDisk X400 SED 256GB, SATA (SD8TB8U-256G), IPS, 1920x1080, 14
Lenovo ThinkPad E460-20EUS00000
6200U, Radeon R7 M360, Samsung CM871 MZ7LF192HCGS, IPS-Panel, 1920x1080, 14
HP ProBook 440 G4-Y8B51EA
7500U, GeForce 930MX, SanDisk SD8SNAT256G1002, TN, 1920x1080, 14
Acer TravelMate P249-M-5452
6200U, HD Graphics 520, SK Hynix HFS256G39TND-N210A, TN LED, 1920x1080, 14
Dell Latitude 3470 N2P7L347014EMEA
6200U, HD Graphics 520, Samsung SSD 850 EVO 250GB, , 1366x768, 14
Power Consumption
-21%
3%
-4%
-13%
Idle Minimum *
2.7
4.1
-52%
3
-11%
3.8
-41%
4.3
-59%
Idle Average *
5.5
8
-45%
5.4
2%
7.6
-38%
8
-45%
Idle Maximum *
6.5
8.9
-37%
6.3
3%
8
-23%
10.3
-58%
Load Average *
44.2
39.3
11%
37.5
15%
30.5
31%
26.4
40%
Load Maximum *
65.2
52.2
20%
61.1
6%
32.5
50%
28.3
57%

* ... smaller is better

Battery Life

Although the previous model used a 47 Wh battery, the test model uses a 45 Wh battery. Thanks to the increased energy efficiency, the laptop is able to last longer, despite having a smaller battery. If the brightness is set to around 150 cd/m², the laptop lasts around 5:30 hours while surfing on the WLAN. While watching videos, the battery has reserves for up to 8:30 hours. The HP ProBook 440 G4 offers longer battery life due to the less power-hungry, but poorer TN display. If you lower the brightness of the IPS panel further and turn on power-saver options, you can get around 8 hours for a complete workday.

Reader's Test
Reader's Test
WLAN-Test
WLAN-Test
H.264-Test
H.264-Test
Classic Test
Classic Test
Charging
Charging
Battery Runtime
Idle (without WLAN, min brightness)
17h 23min
WiFi Surfing v1.3
5h 26min
Big Buck Bunny H.264 1080p
8h 23min
Load (maximum brightness)
2h 04min
Lenovo ThinkPad E470-20H2S00400
7200U, GeForce 940MX, 45 Wh
Lenovo ThinkPad E460-20EUS00000
6200U, Radeon R7 M360, 47 Wh
HP ProBook 440 G4-Y8B51EA
7500U, GeForce 930MX, 48 Wh
Acer TravelMate P249-M-5452
6200U, HD Graphics 520, 41 Wh
Lenovo ThinkPad T460s-20FA003GGE
6600U, HD Graphics 520, 49 Wh
Battery Runtime
-16%
17%
-15%
-22%
Reader / Idle
1043
736
-29%
1083
4%
791
-24%
833
-20%
H.264
503
425
-16%
571
14%
361
-28%
397
-21%
WiFi v1.3
326
292
-10%
414
27%
400
23%
340
4%
Load
124
112
-10%
151
22%
87
-30%
62
-50%

Pros

+ good workmanship quality
+ great keyboard
+ additional Trackpoint
+ IPS display with stable viewing angles
+ high application performance
+ fast WLAN connection
+ silent and cool in everyday use
+ decent battery life
+ attractive price

Cons

- relatively thick and heavy
- meager connectivity
- limited upgrade options
- only 12 months warranty

Verdict

In review: Lenovo ThinkPad E470. Test model provided by Campuspoint.de
In review: Lenovo ThinkPad E470. Test model provided by Campuspoint.de

This year, Lenovo has stuck with the previous design of the E400 series and upgraded some aspects. The laptop has great workmanship, input devices and well-managed noise and heat emissions. Furthermore, our test configuration included a Core i5 processor, an SSD, an IPS display and a dedicated GeForce GPU - all for a price of 700 Euros (~$745). Sadly, the laptop is only available to students at this price and configuration.

High-quality, good hardware and well-made: the Lenovo ThinkPad E470 is a price/ performance hit with all-round qualities.

We must also consider the downsides of this model: the heavy case with few upgrade options and limited modern ports. We would have appreciated having at least one M.2 slot or a USB Type-C port. Competitors, such as the HP ProBook 440 G4, have managed to include such features. Strategically, this decision makes sense: these features would detract from the attractiveness of the more expensive ThinkPad laptops. Buyers are spoilt for choice: the ThinkPad E470 is a nice work laptop with multiple configurations, which is good for office and multimedia work.

Lenovo ThinkPad E470-20H2S00400 - 12/27/2016 v6
Till Schönborn

Chassis
81 / 98 → 83%
Keyboard
87%
Pointing Device
84%
Connectivity
52 / 80 → 64%
Weight
65 / 67 → 95%
Battery
87%
Display
82%
Games Performance
64 / 68 → 94%
Application Performance
86 / 92 → 93%
Temperature
90%
Noise
94%
Audio
69%
Camera
55 / 85 → 65%
Average
77%
85%
Office - Weighted Average

Pricecompare

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> Notebook / Laptop Reviews and News > Reviews > Lenovo ThinkPad E470 (Core i5, GeForce 940MX) Notebook Review
Till Schönborn, 2017-01-12 (Update: 2017-01-13)