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The ThinkPad E490 with the Radeon GPU is much faster, but also gets very hot

The affordable business laptop Lenovo ThinkPad E490 is also available with a dedicated graphics card. The GPU performance is obviously much higher, but the dGPU is a bit too much for the cooling solution.

Work during the day and play a bit after work? If your requirements are not too high, you don't necessarily need two devices. Many business laptops are also available with entry-level dedicated GPUs, which have no problems with simple titles. Lenovo also offers the ThinkPad E490 with an optional dGPU from AMD. The ThinkPad E-series combines typical ThinkPad qualities (like security features, good keyboard) with a comparatively low entry-level price.

However, the combination between the business laptop and the dedicated GPU is not perfect in this case, because the cooling solution was not really adjusted for the additional GPU by the manufacturer. Similar to the previous ThinkPad E480, we can still detect very high surface temperatures, even after several BIOS updates. And we are not only talking about our synthetic stress test, where we stress both processors simultaneously, but also during gaming. Up to 60 °C at the bottom is a lot for a notebook with an entry-level dGPU. The gaming performance is at least stable, even during longer gaming sessions.

If you can live with the limitations, you will get a decent entry-level business laptop. Lenovo uses multiple suppliers for its 14-inch panels, so there is a certain panel lottery. There can be noticeable difference between the screens, in terms of brightness, but also details like PWM. Customers cannot influence this ahead of the purchase and you can only check the panel ID after you started the laptop. Please see our review the ThinkPad E490 and other configurations for more information on the business laptop.

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> Expert Reviews and News on Laptops, Smartphones and Tech Innovations > News > News Archive > Newsarchive 2020 05 > The ThinkPad E490 with the Radeon GPU is much faster, but also gets very hot
Andreas Osthoff, 2020-05-23 (Update: 2020-05-20)