Lenovo Legion Laptops cast a wide net across the gaming laptop market
The new Legion laptops pack the latest AMD processors and Nvidia graphics.
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Lenovo just revealed four new Legion gaming laptops after revealing four ThinkBooks four ThinkPads, a pair of smart glasses, and a few monitors and tablets this CES. While each laptop in the Legion lineup has its own distinguishing features, there are a few traits they all share.
All four Legion laptops will feature the latest generation of AMD Ryzen processors and NVIDIA GeForce RTX 30-series graphics cards. We’re massively excited for this, as AMD has not just held its ground against Intel but often surpassed Intel in performance, battery life, and heat output. We expect the newest Ryzen processors to bring more improvements with them and would not be surprised if they leave the new 11th gen Intel processors in the dust.
While we don’t yet have benchmarks of the upcoming mobile RTX 30-series GPUs, we expect modest performance gains against the mobile RTX 20-series. Aside from processing hardware, the new Legion laptops will feature the Legion AI Engine software, which aims to find the optimal laptop settings to maximize both frames per second and graphics detail.
The Lenovo Legion 7 will be Lenovo’s flagship gaming laptop, and its specs are correspondingly crazy. This 16-inch monster can come equipped with up to 32GB of memory, a 2TB SSD, a latest-gen AMD Ryzen 9 processor, and an NVIDIA GeForce RTX 30-series graphics card. Few games today would ever make full use of such a rig.
While we’re very happy to see AMD Ryzen 9 processors being offered, we’re also excited for the screen on the Legion 7. The 2K screen comes with 165Hz refresh rate—these days 120Hz is more common for gaming laptops—as well as HDR certification. Basically, you should expect the colors on this monitor to really pop and bring the content to life.
However, one does not get all this power without some sacrifices. The Legion 7’s weight starts at 5.5 lbs, so it could be a strain on your back if you travel a lot.
According to Lenovo, the Legion 7 should hits shelves in June starting at $1,699.99.
Legion Slim 7
Lenovo claims that the Legion Slim 7 is its thinnest, lightest Legion laptop of all time. At 4.2 pounds, it’s one of the lighter laptops in today's gaming laptop industry.
Like the other Legions Lenovo announced, the Legion Slim 7 will ship with latest-gen AMD Ryzen processors and NVIDIA GeForce RTX 30-series graphics cards. All this beefy hardware will power one of two configurations: a 4K 60Hz screen, or a 1080P 165Hz screen. Both screens should look good, as they both claim high color accuracy and have Dolby Vision on board.
We will have to wait until May for the Slim 7’s release, but we’re not sure what will distinguish it from other ultralight gaming laptops like the ASUS ROG Zephyrus G14 or Razer Blade 15, both of which have demonstrated remarkable performance in thinner and lighter chassis than the Legion Slim 7. Lenovo has no pricing information available at this time, but we have seen similar laptops sell for $1,400 to $2,000 in the current market.
Legion 5 Pro
Like the Legion 7, the Legion 5 Pro will have 16” 2K 165 Hz panels in its chassis. If you’re sick of dark grey gaming laptops, the Legion 5 Pro also comes in Stingray White—a white chassis with a bright sky blue logo on the front. It may not be the typical gaming laptop aesthetic, but it’s still gaudy and gamer-y (whether that’s good or bad is up to you).
We know the Legion 5 Pro will comes with latest-gen AMD Ryzen processors and NVIDIA GeForce RTX 30-series graphics cards, but because it’s not the flagship Legion model, we would be surprised to see a top-line CPU or GPU option.
The Legion 5 Pro will arrive in March starting at $999.99. If it can keep cool, offer an ergonomic experience, and live up to its potential performance, then this may be a great midrange gaming laptop.
Legion 5 (15-inch and 17-inch models)
Not everyone looking for a gaming laptop needs all the bells and whistles of a high-end model. The Legion 5 aims to fit into the world of budget gaming laptops, but it’s still planning to hit hard with latest-gen AMD Ryzen processors and NVIDIA GeForce RTX 30-series GPUs.
The Legion 5 comes with 1080P display configurations in 60Hz, 120Hz, or 165Hz, although what those panels offer varies in color accuracy.
The 15-inch model’s 60Hz screen aims to hit 100% sRGB color accuracy, the 120Hz model comes with only 45% NTSC (about 55% to 65% sRGB accuracy), and the 165Hz model should support 100% sRGB accuracy and Dolby Vision. We recommend passing on the 120Hz option, as it will likely offer a poor image with low contrast and muddy colors.
Depending on the price, we predict the 165Hz model might offer the best value here, since 60Hz is starting to feel old-fashioned these days. The 17-inch model will only come with 60Hz and 144Hz panels, both of which claim to have high color accuracy.
The Legion 5 should also prove fairly useful outside of gaming. Lenovo claims its battery can last up to 8 hours, and the Legion 5 has plenty of ports, from USB-C to Ethernet. However, lugging it around will be a challenge, as the 15-inch version weighs about 5.3 pounds and the 17-inch version weighs about 6.6 pounds.
Even so, the Legion 5 may be a compelling laptop in the somewhat scarce budget gaming category. Lenovo plans to release the Legion 5 in March 2021 starting at $769.99, which is about what the comparable Acer Nitro 5 starts at. If the base model includes an Nvidia RTX 30-series graphics card, it would be a steal.
Legion Gaming Accessories
Lenovo also revealed a couple gaming headsets and a wireless charging station for CES. The H200 gaming headset features a flip-to-mute microphone that is only active when flipped down, and it works with all major gaming platforms. The new H600 gaming headset is a wireless headset, but the wireless feature only works with a PC via a USB-A dongle. Finally, Lenovo revealed the S600 wireless charging station, which is basically a headphone stand with a Qi-enabled wireless charging base and charging hook to keep your gaming accessories topped up.
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Prices were accurate at the time this article was published but may change over time.