Lenovo’s new Ideapad 710S is a step up from its previous releases. Gone are the plastic cases and somewhat underwhelming features. Instead we now have a glorious all-aluminium and magnesium chassis, which measures just 307 x 214 x13.9mm and weighs 1.2kg.
In terms of the specification, the new Ideapad 710S doesn’t disappoint either. Inside you’ll find a 2.2GHz Intel Core i7-65601) with a turbo clock speed of 3.2GHz and a rather splendid 8GB of 1600MHz LPDDR3 memory.
Storage comes courtesy of a Samsung M.2 256GB SSD (with Windows 10). Lenovo hasn’t scrimped on connectivity either, with a pair of USB 3.0 ports, a 4-in-1 card reader, micro-HDMI and a combo audio port.
The 13.3″ 1920 x 1080 IPS screen is certainly good enough for most users, and it’s remarkably responsive when it comes to pushing the graphics, thanks to the new Intel Iris 540 GPU. It won’t handle modern triple-A gaming too well, but older titles are possible.
The design of the Ideapad 710S its main selling point, and Lenovo has put a lot of thought into every aspect of it. It’s lightweight, looks great and is still compact enough to comfortably carry around with you for the best part of the day. It may not be able to compete with the likes of the Macbook, in terms of style, but it’s one of the better 13″ laptops we’ve seen in recent months.
The keyboard was something we had an problem with on previous Ideapads, which had a spongy feel to them. However, the 710S’s keyboard is a vast improvement. It’s nicely spaced, backlit and feels suitably raised above the aluminium base. It’s comfortable for everyday use, and you can get at a reasonable typing pace once you’re used to it.
As for performance, the 710S isn’t too bad. Windows 10 runs perfectly well, as did all our usual programs and apps, including some video editing and lightweight gaming. The screen is bright, with good colour reproduction, and we liked the fact that there’s a thin bezel on the sides, nearly pushing the screen width to the edges of the laptop’s dimensions.
Another factor we liked about the new Ideapad was the speakers. The JBL stereo speakers, located on the underside of the laptop, in the front two corners, are surprisingly powerful. There’s even a modicum of bass there to help balance out the mid- and higher-range frequencies, and although they won’t turn the head of an audiophile, they’re more than adequate for watching video or listening to your music collection while working.
You would expect all the above to cost somewhere in the region, but Lenovo has managed to cram all this. This is an excellent price for what you get, not just in terms of the style and design of the laptop, but also the performance and features.
The Lenovo Ideapad 710S is a great laptop. It’s sleek looking, is compact and light, and it’s quick enough for everyday tasks and then some. The screen quality is excellent and even the battery life is well above average at around eight hours during normal use. mm David Hayward
A great performing laptop that’s really well priced