Notebookcheck

Lenovo ThinkPad P50s-20FKS00400 Notebook Review

Andreas Osthoff, Stefanie Voigt, 03/26/2016

Outdated? Lenovo’s new ThinkPad P50s is the successor to the ThinkPad W550s. Despite the compact dimensions, users of the mobile workstation are supposed to get sufficient performance. Similar to the predecessor, however, the system lacks a bit of CPU performance, and now there is also a strong competitor from Lenovo themselves.

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For the original German review, see here.

After we have already reviewed the two bigger devices from Lenovo’s current lineup of mobile workstations (ThinkPad P70 and ThinkPad P50), we can now have a look at the ThinkPad P50s. While the two bigger models are focused on the performance, the ThinkPad P50s puts more emphasis on the mobility. Contrary to the models ThinkPad P70 and P50, the P50s does not use a new chassis construction, but it is an update of the previous ThinkPad W550s. This point might be an issue, because the much more powerful P50 is even slightly narrower and the other dimensions are not that different, either. The only obvious mobility advantage of the P50s is the 600 grams lower weight, even though the difference can be smaller depending on the battery configuration. Therefore, we will also try to answer the question whether this mobile workstation is superfluous considering the new ThinkPad P50. 

Our review model of the Lenovo ThinkPad P50s has the designation 20FKS00400. It is the least expensive education model for around 1,400 Euros (~$1563). This model is particularly interesting since we can hardly speak about an entry-level configuration despite the low price. You get an Intel Core i7 ULV processor, a dedicated Quadro GPU, a 3K IPS display as well as 256 GB SSD storage. The only thing you will have to waive is the operating system. There is currently no corresponding model without EDU discount, but you can configure a model with these specs in Lenovo’s online shop and it would currently retail for around 2,100 Euros (~$2345, with OS). 

There are numerous competitors for the mobile workstation. Besides the previously mentioned ThinkPad P50, we will use the Dell Precision 5510, the HP ZBook 15u G3 as well as the MSI WS60 as comparison devices.

Lenovo ThinkPad P50s-20FKS00400 (ThinkPad P Series)
Graphics adapter
NVIDIA Quadro M500M - 2048 MB, Core: 1124 MHz, Memory: 1001 MHz, DDR3, 361.91, Optimus
Memory
8192 MB 
, DDR3L-1600, Single-Channel, 1 of 2 Slots free, up to 32 GB
Display
15.5 inch 16:9, 2880 x 1620 pixel 213 PPI, WX16T028J00, LEN40B5, IPS, glossy: no
Mainboard
Intel Skylake-U Premium PCH
Storage
Samsung PM871 MZYLN256HCHP, 256 GB 
, 215 GB free
Soundcard
Intel Skylake-U/Y PCH - High Definition Audio
Connections
3 USB 3.0 / 3.1 Gen1, 1 HDMI, 1 DisplayPort, 1 Kensington Lock, 1 Docking Station Port, Audio Connections: 3.5 mm Audio, Card Reader: 4-in-1 (MMC, SD, SDHC, SDXC), 1 SmartCard, 1 Fingerprint Reader
Networking
Intel Ethernet Connection I219-V (10/100/1000MBit), Intel Dual Band Wireless-AC 8260 (a/b/g/n/ac), Bluetooth 4.2
Size
height x width x depth (in mm): 22.45 x 380.6 x 258.2 ( = 0.88 x 14.98 x 10.17 in)
Battery
67 Wh Lithium-Ion, removeable, Battery runtime (according to manufacturer): 12 h
Camera
Webcam: HD Webcam (720p)
Additional features
Speakers: Stereo, 2x 1 Watt, Dolby Audio Software, Keyboard: Chiclet, Keyboard Light: yes, Power adapter, quick-start guide, warranty information, 36 Months Warranty
Weight
2.219 kg ( = 78.27 oz / 4.89 pounds), Power Supply: 323 g ( = 11.39 oz / 0.71 pounds)
Price
1400 Euro
Note: The manufacturer may use components from different suppliers including display panels, drives or memory sticks with similar specifications.

 

Case

We already mentioned that the ThinkPad P50s is based on the old ThinkPad W550s. The chassis is almost identical; the only difference is one updated port at the left side, but more on that later. This means we are dealing with a familiar case, which is also used for the ThinkPad T560. The design with the matte-gray plastic is functional but does not tell us anything about the very good stability. The base unit in particular can convince in this respect. It only warps slightly even under a lot of pressure and there is minor creaking. This is certainly criticism on a very high level, but the ThinkPad P50 left an even better impression in this regard. The build quality issue at the left side that we noticed during the review of the W550s is no problem here. There is still no maintenance hatch at the bottom, so you have to remove the whole bottom cover for access to the components. 

The display cover is comparatively thick and pretty sturdy in general, only the torsion resistance could be better. Pressure on the back of the display on the other hand is no problem, and we cannot provoke picture distortions, either. The hinges also leave a pretty good impression and can effectively prevent bouncing of the lid.

One interesting aspect is the size of the case, since the chassis of a workstation with a focus on mobility should be as compact as possible. All three rivals except for the MSI WS60 use new chassis constructions. As you can see in our comparison chart, the Dell Precision is in a class of its own here and still offers much faster components. The HP ZBook 15u G3 and the MSI WS60 hardly differ from the P50s. The comparison with the ThinkPad P50 is also interesting: it is heaver and thicker, but in return narrower and not quite as long.

Connectivity

Similar to other modern ThinkPads, Lenovo replaced the old VGA output with a more modern digital HMDI port. It only supports the standard 1.4 in combination with Skylake, so the 4K resolution (3840x2160 pixels) is limited to 30 Hz. You can also use a Mini-DisplayPort 1.2, which can drive a 4K panel at 60 Hz. Otherwise, the ports are identical to the previous ThinkPad W550s, and this also includes the suboptimal port layout. The Ethernet jack in particular is very far to the front on the left side and therefore prevents the use of a mouse for left-handers. The ports on the right side are also very close to each other, which can be an issue with wider USB flash drives.

There are no changes except for the VGA port, so we do not get modern ports like USB 3.1, USB-C or Thunderbolt. Three USB 3.0 ports are not very generous for a 15-inch workstation, either, and we would have liked to see at least one more port. The performance of the ports, however, does not disappoint. We can measure transfer rates of up to 426 MB/s (read) and 365 MB/s (write) in combination with a Samsung SSDT1. The card reader on the other hand is just average, because 89 MB/s (read), 62 MB/s (write) and 70.5 MB/s when you copy pictures are clearly below the potential of our reference card from Toshiba (Exceria Pro SDXC 64 GB UHS-II, up to 260 MB/s).

An important port for business devices is obviously the docking port, which is located at the bottom. Because of the old chassis, the P50s is still compatible with the old docking stations (e. g. ThinkPad Ultra Dock), while the other two devices from the P-series (P50 and P70) require a new model.

All in all, the ThinkPad P50s offers all the important ports for a mobile workstation, but you have to waive modern ports compared to the rivals. This is currently not a big deal, but those devices usually run for a couple of years, so the situation could change in the future.

Front: no ports
Front: no ports
Right: 2x USB 3.0, Mini-DisplayPort, fan exhaust, slot for a Kensington lock
Right: 2x USB 3.0, Mini-DisplayPort, fan exhaust, slot for a Kensington lock
Left: power, USB 3.0, HDMI, 3.5 mm audio, SD-card reader, Gigabit Ethernet, SmartCard reader
Left: power, USB 3.0, HDMI, 3.5 mm audio, SD-card reader, Gigabit Ethernet, SmartCard reader
Rear: no ports
Rear: no ports

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Communication

Excellent Wi-Fi performance
Excellent Wi-Fi performance

Besides a Gigabit Ethernet port, you obviously also get a Wi-Fi module for wireless Internet connections. The Wi-Fi module Intel Wireless-AC 8260 (2x2) does support all common standards including 802.11 ac in 2.4 and 5 GHz networks as well as Bluetooth 4.2. The theoretical maximum transfer rate is 867 Mbps, and we can measure 81 MB/s (802.11 n: ~13 MB/s) under perfect conditions (~1 meter from the router Asus RT-AC56U). No device managed such a high transfer rate in our individual test environment before.

The antennas for the optional WWAN module are already integrated, and the corresponding SIM slot is in the battery tray.

The webcam is still an important component for office environments. Once again, Lenovo uses an HD webcam (720p), and the best description for the results is functional. Sharpness and colors are not very convenient, but you can clearly recognize the other person. Our impression of the dual-array microphone is much better. Voice recordings are very clear, so an external headset is not usually necessary.

Security

The P50s still uses the "old" fingerprint scanner
The P50s still uses the "old" fingerprint scanner

Here we can see a difference compared to the ThinkPad P50. Our P50s is still based on the predecessor W550s, so we still get the old swipe-style fingerprint scanner. Some modern models from Lenovo already use the more comfortable touch scanner. Otherwise, the security features are on the expected high level, and we hardly miss anything: TPM module (TCG 1.2), vPro support (optional), SmartCard reader, Kensington lock and several passwords for BIOS access, for example. According to the spec sheet, there are no self-encrypting hard drives (OPAL standard) for the P50s.

Accessories

The box of the ThinkPad P50s only includes the power adaptor as well as some service brochures. There are some interesting optional accessories offered by Lenovo, like bigger external batteries and docking stations, so the notebook can easily be integrated into work environments. An overview is available here.

Operating System

Our review model was shipped without an operating system. The installation of Windows 10 Pro was no problem; all necessary drivers are available in the support area of the manufacturer.

Maintenance

There is no maintenance hatch, so you have to remove the whole bottom cover for access to the components. It is secured by 8 screws and numerous small plastic clips, which can easily break. You will have to be very careful not to damage any of them. Once the cover is removed, you get access to all important components, including both memory slots, hard drive, Wi-Fi and (optional) WWAN modules as well as the cooling solution with the fan. More information about the maintenance is also available in the Hardware Maintenance Manual and the User Guide. Both documents are available in Lenovo’s support section. The following pictures are from the similarly constructed predecessor ThinkPad W550s.

Warranty

The standard warranty period is three years and includes an on-site service, but the external 23-Wh battery is only covered for one year. There are optional upgrades to extend both the period (up to 5 years) as well as the scope of the service.

Input Devices

Keyboard

We do not really have to talk a lot about the keyboard because we have already reviewed it a couple of times (T550T560W550s). Compared to smaller ThinkPad models, there are differences in respect of the key stroke. The key travel of the P50s is among the longest in a modern ThinkPad notebook. The chiclet keyboard convinces with a firm pressure point, but the noise development is still on a convenient level. You get a full-size numeric keypad at the right side, and you can still work comfortably in dark environments thanks to the two-stage LED illumination. Frequent writers will not be disappointed.

Touchpad & TrackPoint

The touchpad is a ClickPad with integrated mouse buttons. It convinces with good gliding capabilities, and multi-touch gestures are executed reliably as well. The integrated buttons have a rather hard and firm pressure point. You can also use the familiar red TrackPoint for cursor movements. The corresponding dedicated mouse buttons under the space bar have a softer stroke and produce a rather quiet clicking sound. It works really well and cursor inputs are quick and accurate after a little training period.

Keyboard
Keyboard
Touchpad & TrackPoint
Touchpad & TrackPoint

Display

Subpixel arrangement
Subpixel arrangement
The display is not completely matte.
The display is not completely matte.

There are two different IPS displays for the ThinkPad P50s: one 15.6-inch model with the Full HD resolution (1920x1080 pixels, 250 cd/m²) and a 15.5-inch 3K screen (2880x1620 pixels, 350 cd/m²), which is also the panel of our review unit. Despite the specs, however, the panel is not completely matte, but has more of a semi-matte surface. There are certain reflections, so you should avoid direct light sources behind you in particular.

Our measurements do not confirm the advertised brightness values. We measure up to 319 cd/m², but the average value drops to just 290 cd/m² due to the bad brightness distribution of 82%. The predecessor ThinkPad W550s (also 3K display) was brighter (up to 360 cd/m²), but there are improvements as well. Thanks to the lower black value (0.31 cd/m²) the contrast ratio reaches more than 1000:1, which is the best result within the comparison group.

Subjectively, the picture quality is very good, but there are still problems due to the high resolution. Our review unit was shipped without operating system, so we installed Windows 10 Pro. Windows itself handles the high resolution and the scaling pretty well, but there are still some issues with applications that are not optimized for high resolutions. You could use it without scaling, but we would recommend at least 150% for a comfortable font size.

298
cd/m²
296
cd/m²
310
cd/m²
277
cd/m²
319
cd/m²
278
cd/m²
263
cd/m²
290
cd/m²
276
cd/m²
Distribution of brightness
X-Rite i1Pro 2
Maximum: 319 cd/m² Average: 289.7 cd/m²
Brightness Distribution: 82 %
Center on Battery: 320 cd/m²
Contrast: 1029:1 (Black: 0.31 cd/m²)
ΔE Color 4.8 | 0.4-29.43 Ø6.3
ΔE Greyscale 5.7 | 0.64-98 Ø6.5
87.4% sRGB (Argyll 3D) 56.9% AdobeRGB 1998 (Argyll 3D)
Gamma: 2.07
Lenovo ThinkPad P50s-20FKS00400
WX16T028J00, LEN40B5, IPS
Dell Precision 5510
SHP143E, 7PHPT_LQ156D1, IGZO LED
HP ZBook 15u G3
CMN15C3, TN LED
MSI WS60-6QJE316H11
SDC424B, IPS
Lenovo ThinkPad P50
LP156WF6-SPK1, IPS
Lenovo ThinkPad W550s 20E2-000PGE
VVX16T028J00, IPS LED
Response Times
-33%
-16%
176%
-6%
Response Time Grey 50% / Grey 80% *
38 (15.2, 22.8)
56.4 (23.2, 33.2)
-48%
45.6 (25.6, 20)
-20%
34 (13, 21)
11%
46 (17, 29)
-21%
Response Time Black / White *
28.8 (8.4, 20.4)
34 (11, 23)
-18%
34.4 (16.4, 18)
-19%
24 (9, 15)
17%
26 (9, 17)
10%
PWM Frequency
219 (90)
198.4 (90)
-9%
1316 (40)
501%
Screen
15%
-49%
-5%
-6%
-1%
Brightness middle
319
391
23%
297.8
-7%
237
-26%
263
-18%
360
13%
Brightness
290
361
24%
284
-2%
208
-28%
236
-19%
323
11%
Brightness Distribution
82
87
6%
89
9%
77
-6%
78
-5%
81
-1%
Black Level *
0.31
0.4
-29%
0.849
-174%
0.26
16%
0.34
-10%
0.54
-74%
Contrast
1029
978
-5%
351
-66%
912
-11%
774
-25%
667
-35%
Colorchecker DeltaE2000 *
4.8
4.85
-1%
8.68
-81%
4.42
8%
2.35
51%
3.45
28%
Colorchecker DeltaE2000 max. *
7.8
14.98
-92%
8.54
-9%
Greyscale DeltaE2000 *
5.7
4.01
30%
9.3
-63%
4.43
22%
3.33
42%
2.98
48%
Gamma
2.07 106%
2.18 101%
2.27 97%
2.23 99%
2.38 92%
2.06 107%
CCT
6260 104%
7340 89%
10585 61%
6133 106%
6917 94%
6338 103%
Color Space (Percent of AdobeRGB 1998)
56.9
96
69%
50.99
-10%
52.5
-8%
37
-35%
56
-2%
Color Space (Percent of sRGB)
87.4
100
14%
80.42
-8%
82.9
-5%
58
-34%
86.3
-1%
Total Average (Program / Settings)
-9% / 6%
-33% / -42%
86% / 37%
-6% / -6%
-1% / -1%

* ... smaller is better

CalMAN Grayscale
CalMAN Grayscale
CalMAN Colorspace
CalMAN Colorspace
CalMAN ColorChecker
CalMAN ColorChecker
CalMAN Saturation Sweeps
CalMAN Saturation Sweeps
CalMAN Grayscale calibrated
CalMAN Grayscale calibrated
CalMAN Colorspace calibrated
CalMAN Colorspace calibrated
CalMAN ColorChecker calibrated
CalMAN ColorChecker calibrated
CalMAN Saturation Sweeps calibrated
CalMAN Saturation Sweeps calibrated

We check the color accuracy with a spectrophotometer and the professional software CalMAN. The average DeltaE-2000 deviations compared to the sRGB reference color space are 4.8 (colors) and 5.7 (grayscale) ex-works. The target values are smaller than 3 in both cases, so the results are not really good. A calibration can improve the accuracy, particularly for the grayscale (DeltaE-2000: 0.9). The average color deviation also drops below 3 (2.8), but there are still some outliers at around 5. Color temperature (6,628 K) and gamma value (2.17) are also very close to their respective ideal values (6,500 K and 2.2, respectively). The display covers the sRGB color space by 87.4% and the wider sRGB reference by 56.9%, so it is not perfectly suited for professional picture editing.

sRGB coverage: 87.4%
sRGB coverage: 87.4%
AdobeRGB coverage: 56.9%
AdobeRGB coverage: 56.9%

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
28.8 ms ... rise ↗ and fall ↘ combined↗ 8.4 ms rise
↘ 20.4 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. » 67 % of all devices are better.
This means that the measured response time is worse than the average of all tested devices (25.6 ms).
       Response Time 50% Grey to 80% Grey
38 ms ... rise ↗ and fall ↘ combined↗ 15.2 ms rise
↘ 22.8 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. » 35 % of all devices are better.
This means that the measured response time is similar to the average of all tested devices (41 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 219 Hz ≤ 90 % brightness setting

The display backlight flickers at 219 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 219 Hz is relatively low, so sensitive users will likely notice flickering and experience eyestrain at the stated brightness setting and below.

In comparison: 52 % of all tested devices do not use PWM to dim the display. If PWM was detected, an average of 8773 (minimum: 43 - maximum: 142900) Hz was measured.

The luminance is not reduced on battery power, but there can still be restrictions in bright environments due to the semi-matte display surface, so you should avoid direct light sources. There are, however, no problems in the shade. The viewing-angle stability of the IPS panel is good; the picture will only be noticeably brighter from an angle from above.

In the sun (without reflections)
In the sun (without reflections)
In the sun (with reflections)
In the sun (with reflections)
Viewing angles
Viewing angles

Performance

Lenovo’s ThinkPad P50s is only available with frugal dual-core processors (Core i5-6300UCore i7-6500UCore i7-6600U) as well as the discrete Quadro M500M graphics adapter from Nvidia. You will unfortunately have to waive modern DDR4-RAM. Similar to the predecessor W550s, you get DDR3L memory (up to 32 GB). Lenovo includes one 2.5-inch storage tray, which can be equipped with conventional hard drives all the way up to fast NVMe-SSDs.

Our review model from the education lineup retails for 1,400 Euros (~$1563) and can therefore be called a bargain. You get an Intel Core i7, 8 GB RAM (single-channel), a 256 GB SSD (SATA) and a discrete Quadro GPU. The performance should therefore be sufficient for many tasks, but the processor could be the bottleneck in very CPU-demanding applications.

 

Processor

We have already tested Intel's modern ULV dual-cores many times, so we just want to mention the most important specs at this point. The Core i7-6500U (Skylake, 2.5-3.1 GHz) can execute up to four threads simultaneously and is powerful enough for many tasks. The problem of these ULV models is usually the consumption limit (TDP), so the chips often cannot maintain their maximum performance for longer periods. We were positively surprised by the current ThinkPad T460s in this respect, where the TDP limit was permanently raised to 25 Watts. You might think this is also the case for a mobile workstation, but you would be wrong. For a short time, the processor of the ThinkPad P50s can consume up to 19 Watts, but the usual limit at 15 Watts will set in after around 30 seconds. 

Thanks to the high Turbo Boost, the comparison devices are very close when we only stress one core. As expected, the ULV processor does not stand a chance against the faster quad-cores in multi-core scenarios, while the Core i7-6600U is around 7% ahead of the review unit. We deliberately exclude the results of the ThinkPad T460s; it is only supposed to show the theoretical capabilities of the ULV chips without consumption limits. 

The performance of the Core i7 is not reduced on battery power. More information and benchmarks for the Core i7-6500U are available here.

Cinebench R15
CPU Single 64Bit
MSI WS60-6QJE316H11
Intel Xeon E3-1505M v5
158 Points ∼100% +22%
HP ZBook 15u G3
Intel Core i7-6600U
143 Points ∼91% +11%
Dell Precision 5510
Intel Xeon E3-1505M v5
142 Points ∼90% +10%
Lenovo ThinkPad T460s-20FA003GGE
Intel Core i7-6600U
141 Points ∼89% +9%
Lenovo ThinkPad P50s-20FKS00400
Intel Core i7-6500U
129 Points ∼82%
Lenovo ThinkPad W550s 20E2-000PGE
Intel Core i7-5500U
124 Points ∼78% -4%
Lenovo ThinkPad P50
Intel Core i7-6820HQ
117 Points ∼74% -9%
CPU Multi 64Bit
Dell Precision 5510
Intel Xeon E3-1505M v5
732 Points ∼100% +138%
MSI WS60-6QJE316H11
Intel Xeon E3-1505M v5
674 Points ∼92% +120%
Lenovo ThinkPad P50
Intel Core i7-6820HQ
592 Points ∼81% +93%
Lenovo ThinkPad T460s-20FA003GGE
Intel Core i7-6600U
347 Points ∼47% +13%
HP ZBook 15u G3
Intel Core i7-6600U
330 Points ∼45% +7%
Lenovo ThinkPad P50s-20FKS00400
Intel Core i7-6500U
307 Points ∼42%
Lenovo ThinkPad W550s 20E2-000PGE
Intel Core i7-5500U
260 Points ∼36% -15%
Cinebench R11.5
CPU Single 64Bit
MSI WS60-6QJE316H11
Intel Xeon E3-1505M v5
1.78 Points ∼100% +19%
HP ZBook 15u G3
Intel Core i7-6600U
1.63 Points ∼92% +9%
Dell Precision 5510
Intel Xeon E3-1505M v5
1.6 Points ∼90% +7%
Lenovo ThinkPad T460s-20FA003GGE
Intel Core i7-6600U
1.57 Points ∼88% +5%
Lenovo ThinkPad P50s-20FKS00400
Intel Core i7-6500U
1.49 Points ∼84%
Lenovo ThinkPad W550s 20E2-000PGE
Intel Core i7-5500U
1.42 Points ∼80% -5%
Lenovo ThinkPad P50
Intel Core i7-6820HQ
1.32 Points ∼74% -11%
CPU Multi 64Bit
Dell Precision 5510
Intel Xeon E3-1505M v5
7.93 Points ∼100% +130%
MSI WS60-6QJE316H11
Intel Xeon E3-1505M v5
7.42 Points ∼94% +115%
Lenovo ThinkPad P50
Intel Core i7-6820HQ
6.48 Points ∼82% +88%
Lenovo ThinkPad T460s-20FA003GGE
Intel Core i7-6600U
3.83 Points ∼48% +11%
HP ZBook 15u G3
Intel Core i7-6600U
3.67 Points ∼46% +6%
Lenovo ThinkPad P50s-20FKS00400
Intel Core i7-6500U
3.45 Points ∼44%
Lenovo ThinkPad W550s 20E2-000PGE
Intel Core i7-5500U
2.85 Points ∼36% -17%
Cinebench R10 Rendering Single CPUs 64Bit
6241 Points
Cinebench R10 Rendering Multiple CPUs 64Bit
14039 Points
Cinebench R10 Shading 64Bit
5472 Points
Cinebench R10 Shading 32Bit
5476
Cinebench R10 Rendering Multiple CPUs 32Bit
10447
Cinebench R10 Rendering Single 32Bit
4886
Cinebench R11.5 OpenGL 64Bit
39.77 fps
Cinebench R11.5 CPU Multi 64Bit
3.45 Points
Cinebench R11.5 CPU Single 64Bit
1.49 Points
Cinebench R15 Ref. Match 64Bit
99.6 %
Cinebench R15 OpenGL 64Bit
48.45 fps
Cinebench R15 CPU Multi 64Bit
307 Points
Cinebench R15 CPU Single 64Bit
129 Points
Help

System Performance

The system runs very smoothly thanks to the fast SSD, and we did not have problems with stutters or crashes during the review. The PCMark scores of the ThinkPad P50s are comparatively bad. PCMark 8 uses the OpenCL interface and automatically selects the suitable device (GPU). There might still be issues with the driver, because PCMark identifies the graphics card as Nvidia Quadro K620M.

PCMark Vantage Result
15876 points
PCMark 7 Score
4992 points
PCMark 8 Home Score Accelerated v2
2790 points
PCMark 8 Work Score Accelerated v2
3744 points
Help
PCMark 8
Work Score Accelerated v2
Dell Precision 5510
5100 Points ∼100% +36%
HP ZBook 15u G3
4900 Points ∼96% +31%
Lenovo ThinkPad P50
4677 Points ∼92% +25%
Lenovo ThinkPad T460s-20FA003GGE
4442 Points ∼87% +19%
Lenovo ThinkPad W550s 20E2-000PGE
4323 Points ∼85% +15%
MSI WS60-6QJE316H11
4045 Points ∼79% +8%
Lenovo ThinkPad P50s-20FKS00400
3744 Points ∼73%
Home Score Accelerated v2
Lenovo ThinkPad P50
4213 Points ∼100% +51%
HP ZBook 15u G3
3974 Points ∼94% +42%
Dell Precision 5510
3941 Points ∼94% +41%
Lenovo ThinkPad T460s-20FA003GGE
3542 Points ∼84% +27%
MSI WS60-6QJE316H11
3134 Points ∼74% +12%
Lenovo ThinkPad W550s 20E2-000PGE
3061 Points ∼73% +10%
Lenovo ThinkPad P50s-20FKS00400
2790 Points ∼66%
PCMark 7 - Score
HP ZBook 15u G3
5493 Points ∼100% +10%
MSI WS60-6QJE316H11
5340 Points ∼97% +7%
Dell Precision 5510
5317 Points ∼97% +7%
Lenovo ThinkPad T460s-20FA003GGE
5190 Points ∼94% +4%
Lenovo ThinkPad P50s-20FKS00400
4992 Points ∼91%
Lenovo ThinkPad P50
4892 Points ∼89% -2%
Lenovo ThinkPad W550s 20E2-000PGE
4474 Points ∼81% -10%

Legend

 
Lenovo ThinkPad P50s-20FKS00400 Intel Core i7-6500U, NVIDIA Quadro M500M, Samsung PM871 MZYLN256HCHP
 
Dell Precision 5510 Intel Xeon E3-1505M v5, NVIDIA Quadro M1000M, SK hynix SC920 512 GB
 
HP ZBook 15u G3 Intel Core i7-6600U, AMD FirePro W4190M, Samsung SM951 MZVPV256HDGL m.2 PCI-e
 
MSI WS60-6QJE316H11 Intel Xeon E3-1505M v5, NVIDIA Quadro M2000M, Toshiba NVMe THNSN5128GP
 
Lenovo ThinkPad P50 Intel Core i7-6820HQ, NVIDIA Quadro M2000M, Samsung SSD PM871 MZNLN256HCHP
 
Lenovo ThinkPad W550s 20E2-000PGE Intel Core i7-5500U, NVIDIA Quadro K620M, Samsung SSD PM851 512 GB MZ7TE512HMHP
 
Lenovo ThinkPad T460s-20FA003GGE Intel Core i7-6600U, Intel HD Graphics 520, Samsung SSD SM951a 512GB M.2 PCIe 3.0 x4 NVMe (MZVKV512)

Storage Devices

Lenovo does not use M.2-SSDs for the ThinkPad P50s, but the 2.5-inch slot does support SATA-Express, which means you can also use fast NVMe-SSDs. Our review unit is equipped with a conventional SATA-SSD and a capacity of 256 GB. The Samsung PM871 manages very good transfer rates of up to 475 MB/s (seq. read) and around 300 MB/s (seq. write). More benchmarks and comparisons are available in our comprehensive SSD/HDD comparison.

Samsung PM871 MZYLN256HCHP
Sequential Read: 475.5 MB/s
Sequential Write: 304.7 MB/s
512K Read: 379.3 MB/s
512K Write: 303.4 MB/s
4K Read: 34.31 MB/s
4K Write: 89.39 MB/s
4K QD32 Read: 319.9 MB/s
4K QD32 Write: 279.4 MB/s

GPU Performance

Nvidia's Quadro M500M is basically a renamed Quadro K620M. This is also supported by some benchmarks, which identify the graphics card as Quadro K620M. The technical specs are identical as well: GM 108 chip (Maxwell), core clock of up to 1124 MHz, 2 GB DDR3-VRAM @1000 MHz and a 64-bit memory interface. The system can automatically switch between the discrete GPU and the integrated Intel HD Graphics 520 (Optimus).

Compared to the consumer models from the GeForce series, Quadro chips use a modified BIOS and special drivers to ensure high stability. Certifications also ensure the compatibility between hardware and software. We use the benchmarks SPECviewperf 11 and 12 to evaluate the OpenGL performance. They include the areas CAD, CAM, geology and medical MRI. There can be differences depending on the test, but the Quadro M500M can usually beat the Quadro K620M as well as the AMD FirePro W4190. Only the faster Quadro M1000M is out of range. The performance of the integrated HD Graphics 520 is also impressive, which is sometimes even on par with our Quadro M500M.

SPECviewperf 12
1900x1060 Solidworks (sw-03)
Lenovo ThinkPad P50
NVIDIA Quadro M2000M
71.68 fps ∼100% +93%
MSI WS60-6QJE316H11
NVIDIA Quadro M2000M
62.99 fps ∼88% +69%
Dell Precision 5510
NVIDIA Quadro M1000M
62 fps ∼86% +67%
Lenovo ThinkPad P50s-20FKS00400
NVIDIA Quadro M500M
37.22 fps ∼52%
Lenovo ThinkPad W550s 20E2-000PGE
NVIDIA Quadro K620M
33.02 fps ∼46% -11%
HP ZBook 15u G3
AMD FirePro W4190M
31.41 fps ∼44% -16%
Lenovo ThinkPad T460s-20FA003GGE
Intel HD Graphics 520
22.64 fps ∼32% -39%
1900x1060 Siemens NX (snx-02)
Lenovo ThinkPad P50
NVIDIA Quadro M2000M
33.95 fps ∼100% +77%
MSI WS60-6QJE316H11
NVIDIA Quadro M2000M
32.52 fps ∼96% +70%
Dell Precision 5510
NVIDIA Quadro M1000M
31 fps ∼91% +62%
HP ZBook 15u G3
AMD FirePro W4190M
19.89 fps ∼59% +4%
Lenovo ThinkPad P50s-20FKS00400
NVIDIA Quadro M500M
19.13 fps ∼56%
Lenovo ThinkPad W550s 20E2-000PGE
NVIDIA Quadro K620M
17.1 fps ∼50% -11%
Lenovo ThinkPad T460s-20FA003GGE
Intel HD Graphics 520
2.95 fps ∼9% -85%
1900x1060 Showcase (showcase-01)
MSI WS60-6QJE316H11
NVIDIA Quadro M2000M
24.25 fps ∼100% +299%
Lenovo ThinkPad P50
NVIDIA Quadro M2000M
21.35 fps ∼88% +251%
Dell Precision 5510
NVIDIA Quadro M1000M
20 fps ∼82% +229%
Lenovo ThinkPad W550s 20E2-000PGE
NVIDIA Quadro K620M
6.32 fps ∼26% +4%
Lenovo ThinkPad P50s-20FKS00400
NVIDIA Quadro M500M
6.08 fps ∼25%
Lenovo ThinkPad T460s-20FA003GGE
Intel HD Graphics 520
6.05 fps ∼25% 0%
HP ZBook 15u G3
AMD FirePro W4190M
4.98 fps ∼21% -18%
1900x1060 Medical (medical-01)
Lenovo ThinkPad P50
NVIDIA Quadro M2000M
14.68 fps ∼100% +54%
MSI WS60-6QJE316H11
NVIDIA Quadro M2000M
14.4 fps ∼98% +51%
Dell Precision 5510
NVIDIA Quadro M1000M
12 fps ∼82% +26%
Lenovo ThinkPad P50s-20FKS00400
NVIDIA Quadro M500M
9.51 fps ∼65%
Lenovo ThinkPad W550s 20E2-000PGE
NVIDIA Quadro K620M
7.05 fps ∼48% -26%
HP ZBook 15u G3
AMD FirePro W4190M
6.09 fps ∼41% -36%
Lenovo ThinkPad T460s-20FA003GGE
Intel HD Graphics 520
1.7 fps ∼12% -82%
1900x1060 Maya (maya-04)
Lenovo ThinkPad P50
NVIDIA Quadro M2000M
38.46 fps ∼100% +245%
Dell Precision 5510
NVIDIA Quadro M1000M
30 fps ∼78% +169%
MSI WS60-6QJE316H11
NVIDIA Quadro M2000M
29.89 fps ∼78% +168%
HP ZBook 15u G3
AMD FirePro W4190M
16.38 fps ∼43% +47%
Lenovo ThinkPad W550s 20E2-000PGE
NVIDIA Quadro K620M
12.03 fps ∼31% +8%
Lenovo ThinkPad P50s-20FKS00400
NVIDIA Quadro M500M
11.14 fps ∼29%
Lenovo ThinkPad T460s-20FA003GGE
Intel HD Graphics 520
10.89 fps ∼28% -2%
1900x1060 Energy (energy-01)
Lenovo ThinkPad P50
NVIDIA Quadro M2000M
3.2 fps ∼100% +504%
MSI WS60-6QJE316H11
NVIDIA Quadro M2000M
3.16 fps ∼99% +496%
Dell Precision 5510
NVIDIA Quadro M1000M
0.69 fps ∼22% +30%
Lenovo ThinkPad P50s-20FKS00400
NVIDIA Quadro M500M
0.53 fps ∼17%
HP ZBook 15u G3
AMD FirePro W4190M
0.41 fps ∼13% -23%
Lenovo ThinkPad W550s 20E2-000PGE
NVIDIA Quadro K620M
0.38 fps ∼12% -28%
Lenovo ThinkPad T460s-20FA003GGE
Intel HD Graphics 520
0.06 fps ∼2% -89%
1900x1060 Creo (creo-01)
Lenovo ThinkPad P50
NVIDIA Quadro M2000M
38.95 fps ∼100% +89%
MSI WS60-6QJE316H11
NVIDIA Quadro M2000M
37.48 fps ∼96% +82%
Dell Precision 5510
NVIDIA Quadro M1000M
34 fps ∼87% +65%
Lenovo ThinkPad P50s-20FKS00400
NVIDIA Quadro M500M
20.62 fps ∼53%
HP ZBook 15u G3
AMD FirePro W4190M
16.87 fps ∼43% -18%
Lenovo ThinkPad W550s 20E2-000PGE
NVIDIA Quadro K620M
16.28 fps ∼42% -21%
Lenovo ThinkPad T460s-20FA003GGE
Intel HD Graphics 520
10.15 fps ∼26% -51%
1900x1060 Catia (catia-04)
Lenovo ThinkPad P50
NVIDIA Quadro M2000M
46.26 fps ∼100% +116%
MSI WS60-6QJE316H11
NVIDIA Quadro M2000M
44.29 fps ∼96% +107%
Dell Precision 5510
NVIDIA Quadro M1000M
37 fps ∼80% +73%
Lenovo ThinkPad P50s-20FKS00400
NVIDIA Quadro M500M
21.42 fps ∼46%
Lenovo ThinkPad W550s 20E2-000PGE
NVIDIA Quadro K620M
18.72 fps ∼40% -13%
HP ZBook 15u G3
AMD FirePro W4190M
18.62 fps ∼40% -13%
Lenovo ThinkPad T460s-20FA003GGE
Intel HD Graphics 520
11.62 fps ∼25% -46%
SPECviewperf 11
1920x1080 Siemens NX
Lenovo ThinkPad P50
NVIDIA Quadro M2000M
43.31 fps ∼100% +47%
MSI WS60-6QJE316H11
NVIDIA Quadro M2000M
42.14 fps ∼97% +43%
Dell Precision 5510
NVIDIA Quadro M1000M
41 fps ∼95% +39%
Lenovo ThinkPad W550s 20E2-000PGE
NVIDIA Quadro K620M
30.91 fps ∼71% +5%
Lenovo ThinkPad P50s-20FKS00400
NVIDIA Quadro M500M
29.41 fps ∼68%
1920x1080 Tcvis
Lenovo ThinkPad P50
NVIDIA Quadro M2000M
43.93 fps ∼100% +23%
MSI WS60-6QJE316H11
NVIDIA Quadro M2000M
42.91 fps ∼98% +20%
Dell Precision 5510
NVIDIA Quadro M1000M
40 fps ∼91% +12%
Lenovo ThinkPad W550s 20E2-000PGE
NVIDIA Quadro K620M
39.52 fps ∼90% +11%
Lenovo ThinkPad P50s-20FKS00400
NVIDIA Quadro M500M
35.63 fps ∼81%
1920x1080 SolidWorks
Dell Precision 5510
NVIDIA Quadro M1000M
51 fps ∼100% +29%
MSI WS60-6QJE316H11
NVIDIA Quadro M2000M
47.71 fps ∼94% +20%
Lenovo ThinkPad P50
NVIDIA Quadro M2000M
46.69 fps ∼92% +18%
Lenovo ThinkPad W550s 20E2-000PGE
NVIDIA Quadro K620M
41.78 fps ∼82% +5%
Lenovo ThinkPad P50s-20FKS00400
NVIDIA Quadro M500M
39.63 fps ∼78%
1920x1080 Pro/ENGINEER
Dell Precision 5510
NVIDIA Quadro M1000M
21 fps ∼100% +41%
Lenovo ThinkPad P50
NVIDIA Quadro M2000M
17.54 fps ∼84% +18%
MSI WS60-6QJE316H11
NVIDIA Quadro M2000M
17.4 fps ∼83% +17%
Lenovo ThinkPad W550s 20E2-000PGE
NVIDIA Quadro K620M
15.68 fps ∼75% +5%
Lenovo ThinkPad P50s-20FKS00400
NVIDIA Quadro M500M
14.87 fps ∼71%
1920x1080 Maya
MSI WS60-6QJE316H11
NVIDIA Quadro M2000M
58.31 fps ∼100% +24%
Lenovo ThinkPad P50
NVIDIA Quadro M2000M
56.89 fps ∼98% +21%
Dell Precision 5510
NVIDIA Quadro M1000M
56 fps ∼96% +19%
Lenovo ThinkPad W550s 20E2-000PGE
NVIDIA Quadro K620M
49.5 fps ∼85% +6%
Lenovo ThinkPad P50s-20FKS00400
NVIDIA Quadro M500M
46.88 fps ∼80%
1920x1080 Lightwave
Dell Precision 5510
NVIDIA Quadro M1000M
54 fps ∼100% +15%
MSI WS60-6QJE316H11
NVIDIA Quadro M2000M
52.47 fps ∼97% +12%
Lenovo ThinkPad P50
NVIDIA Quadro M2000M
48.27 fps ∼89% +3%
Lenovo ThinkPad P50s-20FKS00400
NVIDIA Quadro M500M
46.9 fps ∼87%
Lenovo ThinkPad W550s 20E2-000PGE
NVIDIA Quadro K620M
46.82 fps ∼87% 0%
1920x1080 Ensight
Lenovo ThinkPad P50
NVIDIA Quadro M2000M
46.43 fps ∼100% +127%
MSI WS60-6QJE316H11
NVIDIA Quadro M2000M
43.49 fps ∼94% +113%
Dell Precision 5510
NVIDIA Quadro M1000M
39 fps ∼84% +91%
Lenovo ThinkPad W550s 20E2-000PGE
NVIDIA Quadro K620M
20.68 fps ∼45% +1%
Lenovo ThinkPad P50s-20FKS00400
NVIDIA Quadro M500M
20.44 fps ∼44%
1920x1080 Catia
Dell Precision 5510
NVIDIA Quadro M1000M
54 fps ∼100% +42%
Lenovo ThinkPad P50
NVIDIA Quadro M2000M
53.48 fps ∼99% +40%
MSI WS60-6QJE316H11
NVIDIA Quadro M2000M
48.98 fps ∼91% +29%
Lenovo ThinkPad W550s 20E2-000PGE
NVIDIA Quadro K620M
46.7 fps ∼86% +23%
Lenovo ThinkPad P50s-20FKS00400
NVIDIA Quadro M500M
38.08 fps ∼71%

GPGPU scenarios are becoming more popular as well, where the calculations are transferred from the processor to the graphics card. There are different standards that can differ depending on the manufacturer (QuickSync, APP, CUDA). The tools LuxMark and SiSoft Sandra show a similar picture: The Quadro M500M is usually behind the Quadro M1000M and ahead of the Quadro K620M, which should mainly be a result of driver optimizations.

LuxMark v2.0 64Bit
Room GPUs-only
MSI WS60-6QJE316H11
NVIDIA Quadro M2000M
903 Samples/s ∼100% +139%
Lenovo ThinkPad P50
NVIDIA Quadro M2000M
791 Samples/s ∼88% +109%
Dell Precision 5510
NVIDIA Quadro M1000M
534 Samples/s ∼59% +41%
Lenovo ThinkPad P50s-20FKS00400
NVIDIA Quadro M500M
378 Samples/s ∼42%
Lenovo ThinkPad W550s 20E2-000PGE
NVIDIA Quadro K620M
253 Samples/s ∼28% -33%
Lenovo ThinkPad T460s-20FA003GGE
Intel HD Graphics 520
224 Samples/s ∼25% -41%
Sala GPUs-only
MSI WS60-6QJE316H11
NVIDIA Quadro M2000M
1434 Samples/s ∼100% +52%
Lenovo ThinkPad P50
NVIDIA Quadro M2000M
1426 Samples/s ∼99% +51%
HP ZBook 15u G3
AMD FirePro W4190M
1034 Samples/s ∼72% +9%
Lenovo ThinkPad P50s-20FKS00400
NVIDIA Quadro M500M
945 Samples/s ∼66%
Dell Precision 5510
NVIDIA Quadro M1000M
889 Samples/s ∼62% -6%
Lenovo ThinkPad T460s-20FA003GGE
Intel HD Graphics 520
529 Samples/s ∼37% -44%
Lenovo ThinkPad W550s 20E2-000PGE
NVIDIA Quadro K620M
508 Samples/s ∼35% -46%
SiSoft Sandra 2016
Image Processing
MSI WS60-6QJE316H11
NVIDIA Quadro M2000M
155.76 MPix/s ∼100% +57%
Lenovo ThinkPad P50
NVIDIA Quadro M2000M
155.73 MPix/s ∼100% +57%
Dell Precision 5510
NVIDIA Quadro M1000M
127.5 MPix/s ∼82% +28%
Lenovo ThinkPad P50s-20FKS00400
NVIDIA Quadro M500M
99.46 MPix/s ∼64%
GP Cryptography (Higher Security AES256+SHA2-512)
Lenovo ThinkPad P50
NVIDIA Quadro M2000M
12.28 GB/s ∼100% +129%
MSI WS60-6QJE316H11
NVIDIA Quadro M2000M
9.28 GB/s ∼76% +73%
Dell Precision 5510
NVIDIA Quadro M1000M
7.38 GB/s ∼60% +37%
Lenovo ThinkPad P50s-20FKS00400
NVIDIA Quadro M500M
5.37 GB/s ∼44%
GP Financial Analysis (FP High/Double Precision)
Lenovo ThinkPad P50
NVIDIA Quadro M2000M
21.75 KOPT/s ∼100% +70%
MSI WS60-6QJE316H11
NVIDIA Quadro M2000M
21.63 KOPT/s ∼99% +69%
Dell Precision 5510
NVIDIA Quadro M1000M
17 KOPT/s ∼78% +33%
Lenovo ThinkPad P50s-20FKS00400
NVIDIA Quadro M500M
12.82 KOPT/s ∼59%

Finally, we have a look at the DirectX performance, which also includes games, where only the raw performance of the GPU and not some special drivers are important. The Fire Strike test (Graphics) of the current 3DMark shows that the performance is pretty much identical to a consumer GeForce 940M. The two GPUs Quadro M500M and Quadro K620M are also on par here since driver optimizations are not that important in this case. The GPU performance is not reduced on battery power. More benchmarks for the Quadro M500M and other GPUs are available here.

Unigine Heaven 3.0
1920x1080 OpenGL, Normal Tessellation, High Shaders AA:Off AF:Off
Dell Precision 5510
NVIDIA Quadro M1000M
43.4 fps ∼100% +117%
MSI WS60-6QJE316H11
NVIDIA Quadro M2000M
33.9 fps ∼78% +70%
Lenovo ThinkPad P50
NVIDIA Quadro M2000M
32.4 fps ∼75% +62%
Lenovo ThinkPad P50s-20FKS00400
NVIDIA Quadro M500M
20 fps ∼46%
Lenovo ThinkPad W550s 20E2-000PGE
NVIDIA Quadro K620M
18.6 fps ∼43% -7%
1920x1080 DX 11, Normal Tessellation, High Shaders AA:Off AF:Off
MSI WS60-6QJE316H11
NVIDIA Quadro M2000M
53.4 fps ∼100% +154%
Lenovo ThinkPad P50
NVIDIA Quadro M2000M
52.5 fps ∼98% +150%
Dell Precision 5510
NVIDIA Quadro M1000M
44.9 fps ∼84% +114%
Lenovo ThinkPad W550s 20E2-000PGE
NVIDIA Quadro K620M
21.9 fps ∼41% +4%
Lenovo ThinkPad P50s-20FKS00400
NVIDIA Quadro M500M
21 fps ∼39%
Unigine Valley 1.0
1920x1080 Extreme HD DirectX AA:x8
Lenovo ThinkPad P50
NVIDIA Quadro M2000M
20.4 fps ∼100% +214%
MSI WS60-6QJE316H11
NVIDIA Quadro M2000M
20.3 fps ∼100% +212%
Dell Precision 5510
NVIDIA Quadro M1000M
18.7 fps ∼92% +188%
Lenovo ThinkPad P50s-20FKS00400
NVIDIA Quadro M500M
6.5 fps ∼32%
1920x1080 Extreme HD Preset OpenGL AA:x8
Dell Precision 5510
NVIDIA Quadro M1000M
16.2 fps ∼100% +138%
MSI WS60-6QJE316H11
NVIDIA Quadro M2000M
13.8 fps ∼85% +103%
Lenovo ThinkPad P50
NVIDIA Quadro M2000M
13.2 fps ∼81% +94%
Lenovo ThinkPad P50s-20FKS00400
NVIDIA Quadro M500M
6.8 fps ∼42%
3DMark
1920x1080 Fire Strike Combined
MSI WS60-6QJE316H11
NVIDIA Quadro M2000M
1628 Points ∼100% +228%
Lenovo ThinkPad P50
NVIDIA Quadro M2000M
1590 Points ∼98% +221%
Dell Precision 5510
NVIDIA Quadro M1000M
1401 Points ∼86% +182%
Lenovo ThinkPad P50s-20FKS00400
NVIDIA Quadro M500M
496 Points ∼30%
Lenovo ThinkPad W550s 20E2-000PGE
NVIDIA Quadro K620M
483 Points ∼30% -3%
Lenovo ThinkPad T460s-20FA003GGE
Intel HD Graphics 520
305 Points ∼19% -39%
1920x1080 Fire Strike Physics
Dell Precision 5510
NVIDIA Quadro M1000M
10414 Points ∼100% +113%
MSI WS60-6QJE316H11
NVIDIA Quadro M2000M
10118 Points ∼97% +107%
Lenovo ThinkPad P50
NVIDIA Quadro M2000M
8526 Points ∼82% +74%
HP ZBook 15u G3
AMD FirePro W4190M
5401 Points ∼52% +10%
Lenovo ThinkPad T460s-20FA003GGE
Intel HD Graphics 520
5291 Points ∼51% +8%
Lenovo ThinkPad P50s-20FKS00400
NVIDIA Quadro M500M
4893 Points ∼47%
Lenovo ThinkPad W550s 20E2-000PGE
NVIDIA Quadro K620M
4665 Points ∼45% -5%
1920x1080 Fire Strike Graphics
MSI WS60-6QJE316H11
NVIDIA Quadro M2000M
4243 Points ∼100% +164%
Lenovo ThinkPad P50
NVIDIA Quadro M2000M
4126 Points ∼97% +156%
Dell Precision 5510
NVIDIA Quadro M1000M
3517 Points ∼83% +118%
Lenovo ThinkPad W550s 20E2-000PGE
NVIDIA Quadro K620M
1621 Points ∼38% +1%
Lenovo ThinkPad P50s-20FKS00400
NVIDIA Quadro M500M
1610 Points ∼38%
HP ZBook 15u G3
AMD FirePro W4190M
1588 Points ∼37% -1%
Lenovo ThinkPad T460s-20FA003GGE
Intel HD Graphics 520
935 Points ∼22% -42%
1920x1080 Fire Strike Score
MSI WS60-6QJE316H11
NVIDIA Quadro M2000M
3952 Points ∼100% +176%
Lenovo ThinkPad P50
NVIDIA Quadro M2000M
3813 Points ∼96% +166%
Dell Precision 5510
NVIDIA Quadro M1000M
3344 Points ∼85% +134%
HP ZBook 15u G3
AMD FirePro W4190M
1517 Points ∼38% +6%
Lenovo ThinkPad P50s-20FKS00400
NVIDIA Quadro M500M
1432 Points ∼36%
Lenovo ThinkPad W550s 20E2-000PGE
NVIDIA Quadro K620M
1424 Points ∼36% -1%
Lenovo ThinkPad T460s-20FA003GGE
Intel HD Graphics 520
863 Points ∼22% -40%
1280x720 Sky Diver Graphics
Dell Precision 5510
NVIDIA Quadro M1000M
11179 Points ∼100%
1280x720 Sky Diver Score
Dell Precision 5510
NVIDIA Quadro M1000M
10951 Points ∼100%
1280x720 Cloud Gate Standard Physics
Dell Precision 5510
NVIDIA Quadro M1000M
7641 Points ∼100% +124%
MSI WS60-6QJE316H11
NVIDIA Quadro M2000M
7312 Points ∼96% +114%
Lenovo ThinkPad P50
NVIDIA Quadro M2000M
6224 Points ∼81% +82%
Lenovo ThinkPad T460s-20FA003GGE
Intel HD Graphics 520
3681 Points ∼48% +8%
HP ZBook 15u G3
AMD FirePro W4190M
3649 Points ∼48% +7%
Lenovo ThinkPad P50s-20FKS00400
NVIDIA Quadro M500M
3413 Points ∼45%
Lenovo ThinkPad W550s 20E2-000PGE
NVIDIA Quadro K620M
3359 Points ∼44% -2%
1280x720 Cloud Gate Standard Graphics
Lenovo ThinkPad P50
NVIDIA Quadro M2000M
30495 Points ∼100% +268%
MSI WS60-6QJE316H11
NVIDIA Quadro M2000M
27157 Points ∼89% +228%
Dell Precision 5510
NVIDIA Quadro M1000M
23777 Points ∼78% +187%
Lenovo ThinkPad W550s 20E2-000PGE
NVIDIA Quadro K620M
9092 Points ∼30% +10%
HP ZBook 15u G3
AMD FirePro W4190M
8513 Points ∼28% +3%
Lenovo ThinkPad P50s-20FKS00400
NVIDIA Quadro M500M
8281 Points ∼27%
Lenovo ThinkPad T460s-20FA003GGE
Intel HD Graphics 520
7505 Points ∼25% -9%
1280x720 Cloud Gate Standard Score
MSI WS60-6QJE316H11
NVIDIA Quadro M2000M
16940 Points ∼100% +169%
Lenovo ThinkPad P50
NVIDIA Quadro M2000M
16337 Points ∼96% +160%
Dell Precision 5510
NVIDIA Quadro M1000M
16180 Points ∼96% +157%
Lenovo ThinkPad W550s 20E2-000PGE
NVIDIA Quadro K620M
6591 Points ∼39% +5%
HP ZBook 15u G3
AMD FirePro W4190M
6567 Points ∼39% +4%
Lenovo ThinkPad P50s-20FKS00400
NVIDIA Quadro M500M
6287 Points ∼37%
Lenovo ThinkPad T460s-20FA003GGE
Intel HD Graphics 520
6097 Points ∼36% -3%
1920x1080 Ice Storm Extreme Physics
Lenovo ThinkPad T460s-20FA003GGE
Intel HD Graphics 520
38530 Points ∼100%
1920x1080 Ice Storm Extreme Graphics
Lenovo ThinkPad T460s-20FA003GGE
Intel HD Graphics 520
40401 Points ∼100%
1920x1080 Ice Storm Extreme Score
Lenovo ThinkPad T460s-20FA003GGE
Intel HD Graphics 520
39969 Points ∼100%
1280x720 Ice Storm Standard Physics
HP ZBook 15u G3
AMD FirePro W4190M
44477 Points ∼100% +65%
MSI WS60-6QJE316H11
NVIDIA Quadro M2000M
43922 Points ∼99% +63%
Dell Precision 5510
NVIDIA Quadro M1000M
41557 Points ∼93% +54%
Lenovo ThinkPad T460s-20FA003GGE
Intel HD Graphics 520
40867 Points ∼92% +51%
Lenovo ThinkPad P50
NVIDIA Quadro M2000M
39650 Points ∼89% +47%
Lenovo ThinkPad P50s-20FKS00400
NVIDIA Quadro M500M
26992 Points ∼61%
Lenovo ThinkPad W550s 20E2-000PGE
NVIDIA Quadro K620M
14821 Points ∼33% -45%
1280x720 Ice Storm Standard Graphics
Lenovo ThinkPad P50
NVIDIA Quadro M2000M
76826 Points ∼100% +191%
Lenovo ThinkPad T460s-20FA003GGE
Intel HD Graphics 520
66190 Points ∼86% +151%
Dell Precision 5510
NVIDIA Quadro M1000M
41161 Points ∼54% +56%
MSI WS60-6QJE316H11
NVIDIA Quadro M2000M
39220 Points ∼51% +49%
Lenovo ThinkPad W550s 20E2-000PGE
NVIDIA Quadro K620M
38601 Points ∼50% +46%
HP ZBook 15u G3
AMD FirePro W4190M
35930 Points ∼47% +36%
Lenovo ThinkPad P50s-20FKS00400
NVIDIA Quadro M500M
26395 Points ∼34%
1280x720 Ice Storm Standard Score
Lenovo ThinkPad P50
NVIDIA Quadro M2000M
63578 Points ∼100% +140%
Lenovo ThinkPad T460s-20FA003GGE
Intel HD Graphics 520
58178 Points ∼92% +119%
Dell Precision 5510
NVIDIA Quadro M1000M
41248 Points ∼65% +56%
MSI WS60-6QJE316H11
NVIDIA Quadro M2000M
40175 Points ∼63% +51%
HP ZBook 15u G3
AMD FirePro W4190M
37532 Points ∼59% +41%
Lenovo ThinkPad W550s 20E2-000PGE
NVIDIA Quadro K620M
28455 Points ∼45% +7%
Lenovo ThinkPad P50s-20FKS00400
NVIDIA Quadro M500M
26525 Points ∼42%
3DMark 06 Standard
12842 points
3DMark Vantage P Result
7959 points
3DMark 11 Performance
2350 points
3DMark Ice Storm Standard Score
26525 points
3DMark Cloud Gate Standard Score
6287 points
3DMark Fire Strike Score
1432 points
Help

Gaming Performance

We had massive problems during our gaming benchmarks and it was even tricky to launch some games. We suspect an issue with the graphics driver, since the current version 361.91 does not officially support the Quadro M500M. The problems differed depending on the title: Sometimes we had to deactivate the scaling, sometimes the title would only run in a window, or we had to disable the function exclusive full-screen.

All in all, the performance is on par with the predecessor GPU Quadro K620M as well as the consumer GPU Nvidia GeForce 940M, which is used in many multimedia notebooks. Modern games can usually only be played with reduced settings; only some older titles like Tomb Raider or BioShock Infinite reach smooth frame rates with high details. We summarized the requirements of many more titles in our gaming list.

Tomb Raider
1920x1080 Ultra Preset AA:FX AF:16x (sort by value)
Lenovo ThinkPad P50s-20FKS00400
Intel Core i7-6500U, NVIDIA Quadro M500M
17.3 fps ∼34%
Dell Precision 5510
Intel Xeon E3-1505M v5, NVIDIA Quadro M1000M
43 fps ∼83% +149%
Lenovo ThinkPad P50
Intel Core i7-6820HQ, NVIDIA Quadro M2000M
51.5 fps ∼100% +198%
Acer Aspire V3-575G-5093
Intel Core i5-6200U, NVIDIA GeForce 940M
16.8 fps ∼33% -3%
1366x768 High Preset AA:FX AF:8x (sort by value)
Lenovo ThinkPad P50s-20FKS00400
Intel Core i7-6500U, NVIDIA Quadro M500M
34.4 fps ∼32%
Dell Precision 5510
Intel Xeon E3-1505M v5, NVIDIA Quadro M1000M
98 fps ∼91% +185%
Lenovo ThinkPad P50
Intel Core i7-6820HQ, NVIDIA Quadro M2000M
107.3 fps ∼100% +212%
Lenovo ThinkPad W550s 20E2-000PGE
Intel Core i7-5500U, NVIDIA Quadro K620M
36 fps ∼34% +5%
Acer Aspire V3-575G-5093
Intel Core i5-6200U, NVIDIA GeForce 940M
35.4 fps ∼33% +3%
1366x768 Normal Preset AA:FX AF:4x (sort by value)
Lenovo ThinkPad P50s-20FKS00400
Intel Core i7-6500U, NVIDIA Quadro M500M
62.7 fps ∼39%
Dell Precision 5510
Intel Xeon E3-1505M v5, NVIDIA Quadro M1000M
144 fps ∼88% +130%
Lenovo ThinkPad P50
Intel Core i7-6820HQ, NVIDIA Quadro M2000M
162.8 fps ∼100% +160%
Lenovo ThinkPad W550s 20E2-000PGE
Intel Core i7-5500U, NVIDIA Quadro K620M
66 fps ∼41% +5%
Acer Aspire V3-575G-5093
Intel Core i5-6200U, NVIDIA GeForce 940M
52.1 fps ∼32% -17%
1024x768 Low Preset (sort by value)
Lenovo ThinkPad P50s-20FKS00400
Intel Core i7-6500U, NVIDIA Quadro M500M
137.8 fps ∼40%
Dell Precision 5510
Intel Xeon E3-1505M v5, NVIDIA Quadro M1000M
279 fps ∼80% +102%
Lenovo ThinkPad P50
Intel Core i7-6820HQ, NVIDIA Quadro M2000M
348.7 fps ∼100% +153%
Lenovo ThinkPad W550s 20E2-000PGE
Intel Core i7-5500U, NVIDIA Quadro K620M
134 fps ∼38% -3%
Acer Aspire V3-575G-5093
Intel Core i5-6200U, NVIDIA GeForce 940M
82.5 fps ∼24% -40%
Rise of the Tomb Raider
3840x2160 High Preset AA:FX AF:4x (sort by value)
MSI WS60-6QJE316H11
Intel Xeon E3-1505M v5, NVIDIA Quadro M2000M
9.1 fps ∼100%
1920x1080 Very High Preset AA:FX AF:16x (sort by value)
MSI WS60-6QJE316H11
Intel Xeon E3-1505M v5, NVIDIA Quadro M2000M
21.6 fps ∼100%
1920x1080 High Preset AA:FX AF:4x (sort by value)
Lenovo ThinkPad P50s-20FKS00400
Intel Core i7-6500U, NVIDIA Quadro M500M
10.4 fps ∼40%
HP ZBook 15u G3
Intel Core i7-6600U, AMD FirePro W4190M
8 fps ∼31% -23%
MSI WS60-6QJE316H11
Intel Xeon E3-1505M v5, NVIDIA Quadro M2000M
25.7 fps ∼100% +147%
Acer Aspire V3-575G-5093
Intel Core i5-6200U, NVIDIA GeForce 940M
10.84 fps ∼42% +4%
1366x768 Medium Preset AF:2x (sort by value)
Lenovo ThinkPad P50s-20FKS00400
Intel Core i7-6500U, NVIDIA Quadro M500M
18.6 fps ∼41%
HP ZBook 15u G3
Intel Core i7-6600U, AMD FirePro W4190M
14 fps ∼31% -25%
MSI WS60-6QJE316H11
Intel Xeon E3-1505M v5, NVIDIA Quadro M2000M
45.3 fps ∼100% +144%
Acer Aspire V3-575G-5093
Intel Core i5-6200U, NVIDIA GeForce 940M
18.28 fps ∼40% -2%
1024x768 Lowest Preset (sort by value)
Lenovo ThinkPad P50s-20FKS00400
Intel Core i7-6500U, NVIDIA Quadro M500M
30.3 fps ∼100%
Acer Aspire V3-575G-5093
Intel Core i5-6200U, NVIDIA GeForce 940M
22.74 fps ∼75% -25%
BioShock Infinite
1920x1080 Ultra Preset, DX11 (DDOF) (sort by value)
Lenovo ThinkPad P50s-20FKS00400
Intel Core i7-6500U, NVIDIA Quadro M500M
14.7 fps ∼37%
Dell Precision 5510
Intel Xeon E3-1505M v5, NVIDIA Quadro M1000M
38 fps ∼96% +159%
HP ZBook 15u G3
Intel Core i7-6600U, AMD FirePro W4190M
13.64 fps ∼35% -7%
Lenovo ThinkPad P50
Intel Core i7-6820HQ, NVIDIA Quadro M2000M
39.5 fps ∼100% +169%
Lenovo ThinkPad W550s 20E2-000PGE
Intel Core i7-5500U, NVIDIA Quadro K620M
15 fps ∼38% +2%
Acer Aspire V3-575G-5093
Intel Core i5-6200U, NVIDIA GeForce 940M
20.86 fps ∼53% +42%
1366x768 High Preset (sort by value)
Lenovo ThinkPad P50s-20FKS00400
Intel Core i7-6500U, NVIDIA Quadro M500M
43.8 fps ∼39%
Dell Precision 5510
Intel Xeon E3-1505M v5, NVIDIA Quadro M1000M
100 fps ∼89% +128%
HP ZBook 15u G3
Intel Core i7-6600U, AMD FirePro W4190M
34.08 fps ∼30% -22%
Lenovo ThinkPad P50
Intel Core i7-6820HQ, NVIDIA Quadro M2000M
112.9 fps ∼100% +158%
Lenovo ThinkPad W550s 20E2-000PGE
Intel Core i7-5500U, NVIDIA Quadro K620M
42 fps ∼37% -4%
Acer Aspire V3-575G-5093
Intel Core i5-6200U, NVIDIA GeForce 940M
42.27 fps ∼37% -3%
1366x768 Medium Preset (sort by value)
Lenovo ThinkPad P50s-20FKS00400
Intel Core i7-6500U, NVIDIA Quadro M500M
54 fps ∼42%
Dell Precision 5510
Intel Xeon E3-1505M v5, NVIDIA Quadro M1000M
111 fps ∼87% +106%
HP ZBook 15u G3
Intel Core i7-6600U, AMD FirePro W4190M
38.42 fps ∼30% -29%
Lenovo ThinkPad P50
Intel Core i7-6820HQ, NVIDIA Quadro M2000M
128 fps ∼100% +137%
Lenovo ThinkPad W550s 20E2-000PGE
Intel Core i7-5500U, NVIDIA Quadro K620M
52 fps ∼41% -4%
Acer Aspire V3-575G-5093
Intel Core i5-6200U, NVIDIA GeForce 940M
51.4 fps ∼40% -5%
1280x720 Very Low Preset (sort by value)
Lenovo ThinkPad P50s-20FKS00400
Intel Core i7-6500U, NVIDIA Quadro M500M
94.9 fps ∼49%
Dell Precision 5510
Intel Xeon E3-1505M v5, NVIDIA Quadro M1000M
195 fps ∼100% +105%
HP ZBook 15u G3
Intel Core i7-6600U, AMD FirePro W4190M
85.19 fps ∼44% -10%
Lenovo ThinkPad P50
Intel Core i7-6820HQ, NVIDIA Quadro M2000M
187.9 fps ∼96% +98%
Lenovo ThinkPad W550s 20E2-000PGE
Intel Core i7-5500U, NVIDIA Quadro K620M
73 fps ∼37% -23%
Acer Aspire V3-575G-5093
Intel Core i5-6200U, NVIDIA GeForce 940M
73.46 fps ∼38% -23%
low med. high ultra
Tomb Raider (2013) 137.862.734.417.3fps
BioShock Infinite (2013) 94.95443.814.7fps
Metro: Last Light (2013) 48.938.322.911.6fps
Thief (2014) 33.723.419.19.6fps
Dirt Rally (2015) 82.632.819.512.7fps
The Witcher 3 (2015) 30.518.910.2fps
Star Wars Battlefront (2015) 56.533.315.213fps
Rainbow Six Siege (2015) 46.932.419.213.1fps
Just Cause 3 (2015) 35.629.616.214.5fps
Rise of the Tomb Raider (2016) 30.318.610.4fps

Emissions

System Noise

The fan of the ThinkPad P50s is usually deactivated while idling and under light workloads. Thanks to the SSD, it is a silent system in these cases. The notebook stays very inconspicuous at 33.5 dB(A) with slightly more demanding tasks (in this case the first scene of 3DMark06). Only maximum load will be clearly noticeable at up to 41.9 dB(A).

The predecessor ThinkPad W550s was a bit quieter under load, and even the much more powerful ThinkPad P50 is on a similar level. The other comparison devices are louder than our review unit. We could not hear other annoying noises.

Noise Level

Idle
30 / 30 / 30 dB(A)
Load
33.5 / 41.9 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)
Lenovo ThinkPad P50s-20FKS00400
Intel Core i7-6500U, NVIDIA Quadro M500M
Dell Precision 5510
Intel Xeon E3-1505M v5, NVIDIA Quadro M1000M
HP ZBook 15u G3
Intel Core i7-6600U, AMD FirePro W4190M
MSI WS60-6QJE316H11
Intel Xeon E3-1505M v5, NVIDIA Quadro M2000M
Lenovo ThinkPad P50
Intel Core i7-6820HQ, NVIDIA Quadro M2000M
Lenovo ThinkPad W550s 20E2-000PGE
Intel Core i7-5500U, NVIDIA Quadro K620M
Noise
-8%
-4%
-24%
-1%
10%
off / environment *
Idle Minimum *
30
30
-0%
29.8
1%
37.2
-24%
30
-0%
26.9
10%
Idle Average *
30
30
-0%
29.8
1%
37.2
-24%
30
-0%
26.9
10%
Idle Maximum *
30
30
-0%
29.8
1%
37.2
-24%
30
-0%
26.9
10%
Load Average *
33.5
42.08
-26%
39.5
-18%
42.1
-26%
34.5
-3%
30.4
9%
Load Maximum *
41.9
46.78
-12%
43.2
-3%
50.7
-21%
42.1
-0%
38.1
9%

* ... smaller is better

Temperature

Stress test ThinkPad P50s
Stress test ThinkPad P50s

Our review unit does not warm up at all while idling. This does change under load, however, because the temperatures can reach almost 58 °C in the area of the processor and the heat pipe, respectively; we can still measure 52 °C at the fan exhaust. You should not use the notebook on your lap in this case. The palm rest stays conveniently cool, but you can clearly feel the warming during typing. We notice two things: the higher temperatures compared to the predecessor W550s and the big temperature differences between the two sides of the case.

The processor cannot utilize its full performance during our stress test (Prime95 and FurMark for at least one hour), because it will only run at 2.5-2.6 GHz after 30 seconds (up to 76 °C). Technically, this is not throttling, but it is pretty disappointing that a ULV CPU cannot utilize its full performance potential in a mobile workstation. The graphics card also has to reduce its core clock slightly to 900 MHz (up to 70 °C). A 3DMark 11 run immediately after the stress test did not determine a lower result.

Max. Load
 27.4 °C
81 F
30.7 °C
87 F
37.5 °C
100 F
 
 27.3 °C
81 F
34.4 °C
94 F
44.2 °C
112 F
 
 26.5 °C
80 F
32.3 °C
90 F
34.4 °C
94 F
 
Maximum: 44.2 °C = 112 F
Average: 32.7 °C = 91 F
41.1 °C
106 F
33.8 °C
93 F
27.3 °C
81 F
57.8 °C
136 F
55.9 °C
133 F
28.9 °C
84 F
32.3 °C
90 F
30.2 °C
86 F
25.7 °C
78 F
Maximum: 57.8 °C = 136 F
Average: 37 °C = 99 F
Power Supply (max.)  46.3 °C = 115 F | Room Temperature 20 °C = 68 F | Fennel FIRT 550
(±) The average temperature for the upper side under maximal load is 32.7 °C / 91 F, compared to the average of 31.2 °C / 88 F for the devices in the class Workstation.
(±) The maximum temperature on the upper side is 44.2 °C / 112 F, compared to the average of 37.2 °C / 99 F, ranging from 23.1 to 69.8 °C for the class Workstation.
(-) The maximum temperature on the bottom side is 57.8 °C / 136 F, compared to the average of 40.3 °C / 105 F, ranging from 23.5 to 77.3 °C for the class Workstation.
(+) In idle usage, the average temperature for the upper side is 24.8 °C / 77 F, compared to the device average of 31.2 °C / 88 F.
(+) The palmrests and touchpad are reaching skin temperature as a maximum (34.4 °C / 93.9 F) and are therefore not hot.
(-) The average temperature of the palmrest area of similar devices was 28.1 °C / 82.6 F (-6.3 °C / -11.3 F).
Lenovo ThinkPad P50s-20FKS00400
Intel Core i7-6500U, NVIDIA Quadro M500M
Dell Precision 5510
Intel Xeon E3-1505M v5, NVIDIA Quadro M1000M
HP ZBook 15u G3
Intel Core i7-6600U, AMD FirePro W4190M
MSI WS60-6QJE316H11
Intel Xeon E3-1505M v5, NVIDIA Quadro M2000M
Lenovo ThinkPad P50
Intel Core i7-6820HQ, NVIDIA Quadro M2000M
Lenovo ThinkPad W550s 20E2-000PGE
Intel Core i7-5500U, NVIDIA Quadro K620M
Heat
-4%
6%
-11%
-0%
12%
Maximum Upper Side *
44.2
45.8
-4%
44.6
-1%
42.3
4%
36.7
17%
36.5
17%
Maximum Bottom *
57.8
46.7
19%
46
20%
60.1
-4%
41.3
29%
51.2
11%
Idle Upper Side *
26.4
31.2
-18%
25.8
2%
32.7
-24%
31.1
-18%
23.9
9%
Idle Bottom *
28.1
31.9
-14%
27.4
2%
33.1
-18%
36.2
-29%
25.7
9%

* ... smaller is better

Speakers

speaker measurements
speaker measurements

The two stereo speakers are – especially for a business notebook – pretty decent and can also be used for occasional movie or music playback. They hardly distort even at the maximum brightness of 81 dB(A).

Headphones and external speakers can either be attached via 3.5 mm stereo jack or digitally via HDMI/DisplayPort. We tested it with a Bluetooth speaker (Denon Envaya Mini). The connection was very stable and there were no annoying dropouts.

Energy Management

Power Consumption

Overall, the power consumption of the ThinkPad P50s is on the expected level. We can measure between 4.3 and 10.2 Watts while idling. The high display resolution is noticeable, which does slightly increase the consumption. The minimum consumption will drop to just 1.96 Watts when the display is turned off. We can measure 56 Watts under load, which is on par with the predecessor ThinkPad W550s. Those two devices are also the most frugal ones within our comparison group. It is not surprising that the much faster systems consume more power, but the HP ZBook 15u G3 (FHD) only consumes less than 20 Watts more. It seems that the graphics card from AMD needs much more power than the Quadro M500M, even though the performance is comparable. The provided 65-Watt power adapter is sufficient.

Power Consumption
Off / Standbydarklight 0.18 / 0.37 Watt
Idledarkmidlight 4.3 / 9.7 / 10.2 Watt
Load midlight 45.7 / 55.8 Watt
 color bar
Key: min: dark, med: mid, max: light        Gossen Metrahit Energy
Lenovo ThinkPad P50s-20FKS00400
Intel Core i7-6500U, NVIDIA Quadro M500M
Dell Precision 5510
Intel Xeon E3-1505M v5, NVIDIA Quadro M1000M
HP ZBook 15u G3
Intel Core i7-6600U, AMD FirePro W4190M
MSI WS60-6QJE316H11
Intel Xeon E3-1505M v5, NVIDIA Quadro M2000M
Lenovo ThinkPad P50
Intel Core i7-6820HQ, NVIDIA Quadro M2000M
Lenovo ThinkPad W550s 20E2-000PGE
Intel Core i7-5500U, NVIDIA Quadro K620M
Power Consumption
-90%
-4%
-201%
-39%
5%
Idle Minimum *
4.3
8.6
-100%
4.3
-0%
18.8
-337%
5.6
-30%
4
7%
Idle Average *
9.7
16.2
-67%
7.9
19%
29.6
-205%
8.6
11%
9.6
1%
Idle Maximum *
10.2
16.7
-64%
11.5
-13%
30.3
-197%
9.3
9%
10.8
-6%
Load Average *
45.7
82.6
-81%
43.3
5%
90.4
-98%
89.5
-96%
36.9
19%
Load Maximum *
55.8
131.8
-136%
72.3
-30%
150.2
-169%
105
-88%
54.5
2%

* ... smaller is better

Battery Runtime

The Lenovo ThinkPad P50s uses the Power Bridge system with two batteries. Inside the chassis is a 44-Wh battery. There are three different models for the external battery: 3-cells (23 Wh) and 6-cells (48 and 72 Wh). The maximum battery capacity is therefore 116 Wh, but the weight will be increased to around 2.4 kg in this case. Only the small 3-cell battery sits flush with the case, the two 6-cell models will lift the rear area of the notebook.

Our review model uses the smallest external battery, so the total capacity is 67 Wh. The P50s manages decent battery runtimes in our tests. Up to 18 hours and at least 2 hours are possible (Classic Test: 2:09 h, SPECviewperf 12 loop: 1:54 h). Much more interesting, however, are the runtimes with an adjusted brightness of around 150 cd/m². Web browsing is possible for almost 7 hours, while a Full HD video (Big Buck Bunny, H.264) runs for almost 9 hours. The comparison devices have very different battery capacities (47-116 Wh), so a direct comparison is difficult. The runtimes of the P50s are good in general though.

You need patience when you charge the notebook, because the 65-Watt PSU needs more than four hours before the battery is fully charged again. However, 80% of the capacity is already available after around 1.5 hours.

maximum runtime (Battery Eater Reader's Test)
maximum runtime (Battery Eater Reader's Test)
Wi-Fi test
Wi-Fi test
H.264 test
H.264 test
minimum runtime (Battery Eater Classic Test)
minimum runtime (Battery Eater Classic Test)
charging
charging
Battery Runtime
Idle (without WLAN, min brightness)
18h 27min
NBC WiFi Websurfing Battery Test 1.3
6h 48min
Big Buck Bunny H.264 1080p
8h 57min
Load (maximum brightness)
2h 9min
Lenovo ThinkPad P50s-20FKS00400
67 Wh, 6500U, Quadro M500M
Dell Precision 5510
56 Wh, E3-1505M v5, Quadro M1000M
HP ZBook 15u G3
90 Wh, 6600U, FirePro W4190M
MSI WS60-6QJE316H11
47 Wh, E3-1505M v5, Quadro M2000M
Lenovo ThinkPad P50
90 Wh, 6820HQ, Quadro M2000M
Lenovo ThinkPad W550s 20E2-000PGE
116 Wh, 5500U, Quadro K620M
Battery Runtime
-43%
-16%
-74%
-3%
62%
Reader / Idle
1107
428
-61%
756
-32%
160
-86%
860
-22%
1728
56%
H.264
537
197
-63%
141
-74%
533
-1%
667
24%
WiFi v1.3
408
286
-30%
312
-24%
106
-74%
498
22%
715
75%
Load
129
109
-16%
141
9%
51
-60%
113
-12%
247
91%
WiFi
298

Pros

+ sturdy chassis
+ good display
+ excellent keyboard
+ good battery runtime
+ port performance
+ excellent Wi-Fi performance
+ 3 years warranty

Cons

- port layout
- raw CPU performance for a workstation
- CPU cannot fully utilize its Turbo potential
- complicated maintenance
- no modern ports (USB 3.1, USB-C, Thunderbolt, M.2-2280)
- PWM

Verdict

In review: Lenovo ThinkPad P50s. Test model courtesy of Notebooksandmore.
In review: Lenovo ThinkPad P50s. Test model courtesy of Notebooksandmore.

The ThinkPad P50s is a Skylake update of the old ThinkPad W550s, which is also the biggest problem of the mobile workstation. Except for the processor, the device was not really updated, so you will have to waive modern ports (USB-C, Thunderbolt, M.2-SSDs, M.2-2280). We can basically copy the verdict of the W550s at this point, because you once again get a good slimline workstation that lacks a bit of CPU performance. The latter obviously also depends on your usage scenarios, and the mobile ULV chips are certainly no slouches, but the review model cannot even use their full potential. Why can the TDP limit of an Ultrabook like the ThinkPad T460s be raised, but not for a workstation? The different development teams at Lenovo should definitely improve their communication.

This brings us to the next problem for the ThinkPad P50s: the ThinkPad P50. Thanks to a completely redesigned chassis, it offers all modern ports, much more performance, is not louder, but it is much cooler in return. The advantage of the P50s is the slightly thinner construction and the slightly lower weight (also of the PSU). But if you are really that focused on the mobility, there is currently not really an alternative to the Dell Precision 5510.

The ThinkPad P50s is still a decent mobile workstation, but the device was basically not improved over the predecessor. It is therefore not easy for us to recommend the device – especially when you consider the strong competition.

This is particularly the case if you do not have access to Lenovo's education program, because the devices from Lenovo and Dell will have a similar price tag in this case. Our education model for 1,400 Euros (~$1563) is a very good offer, but you can also get the ThinkPad P50 for around 1,440 Euros (~$1608). You will have to live with a worse FHD display, but you get a more modern and powerful device in return.

One note about the final rating: Our updated rating system also evaluates the workstation performance besides the normal application performance, which also influences the rating. For comparison: The P50s would score 85% as an office notebook.

Lenovo ThinkPad P50s-20FKS00400 - 03/16/2016 v5
Andreas Osthoff

Chassis
90 / 98 → 92%
Keyboard
94%
Pointing Device
87%
Connectivity
65 / 81 → 80%
Weight
62 / 10-66 → 93%
Battery
90%
Display
86%
Games Performance
63%
Application Performance
82%
Temperature
88 / 95 → 92%
Noise
91 / 90 → 100%
Audio
68%
Camera
50 / 85 → 59%
Average
76%
79%
Workstation - Weighted Average

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> Notebook / Laptop Reviews and News > Reviews > Lenovo ThinkPad P50s-20FKS00400 Notebook Review
Andreas Osthoff, 2016-03-26 (Update: 2018-05-15)
Andreas Osthoff
Andreas Osthoff - Senior Editor Business
I grew up with computers and modern consumer electronics. I am interested in the technology since I had my first computer, a Commodore C64, and started building my own PCs after that. My focus here at Notebookcheck is the business segment including mobile workstations, but I also like to test new mobile devices. It is always a great experience to review and compare new products. My free time is filled with a lot of sports, in the summer mainly on my bike.