Lenovo IdeaPad U350 review

With its IdeaPad, Lenovo wants to give you more than a netbook could but in a stylish and highly portable package. Has it succeeded? We examine the U350.

Lenovo IdeaPad U350
Reviews
29 Sep, 2009
2
Price 
£471
exc. VAT
Verdict 
Definitely directed towards the consumer route, the U350 has an individual style and ultra portability but its performance just would not cut the mustard for a business user. Our advice? Don’t be put off Lenovo, but don’t put up with this model.

Lenovo is known for business machines and has made a pretty good name for itself in this field taking up the mantle from IBM, whose PC business it acquired in 2005. The company rarely treads into the consumer market but with the release of the Lenovo U350 it has made the move with a crossover machine for both work and play.

Has it achieved this goal or should Lenovo just stick to what it knows best?

The first thing you notice about the machine is its individual design. The casing may be black but has an almost snakeskin quality texture to it with an embossed check, perhaps trying to encourage the small business customer looking for some consumer style.

Upon opening the laptop the surrounding is again very tactile with a metallic looking wrist rest and sleek, shiny black screen surround.

Lenovo IdeaPad U350

The only criticism we have is that it does come across a little bit mish-mash as the snakeskin, metal and glossy black don’t all fit well together.

However one feels about carrying this type of design around at least your arms won’t get too tired. The machine weighs just 1.64kg and is only 29mm thick leading to not only an easily portable machine but an incredibly sleek feel too. This is down to the lack of optical drive though, which is something one has to sacrifice for a lightweight machine unless one is willing to pay serious sums for the likes of the X301.

Rounding up the size elements is the screen. The modest 13.3in display is glossy but manages to keep the glare in check to avoid being too distracting. It offers a reasonable resolution - 1,366 x 768 pixels - and the screen is bright, clear and a pleasure to use. However, it is not mind blowing by any means, lacking that little bit of vibrancy that comes with more expensive machines such as the Acer Timeline TM8371.

Specifications 

Processor: Intel Core 2 Solo SU3500

Memory: 4GB DDR3

Storage: 320GB hard disk

Graphics: Intel GMA 4500M

Display: 13.3in 1366 x 768

Ports: 3 x USB, standard VGA, HDMI, memory card, ethernet

Connectivity: 802.11bg + draft-n WLAN, Bluetooth

OS: Windows Vista

Warranty: 1yr return to base

Dimensions: 329 x 229 x 29mm (WDH)

Weight: 1.64kg

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