A Review of the Lenovo Y50 Touch 4K UHD Laptop Computer 59423621
With the release of its Y50, Lenovo has created very cool looking, toughly built laptop that also comes with the massive pixel density of a 4K resolution on a tiny 15 inch screen.
What makes this machine particularly attractive is the neat mix of a generally businesslike and sleek appearance with a red keyboard backlight and beveled lid to indicate something that’s definitely more than just your average business laptop. On the other hand, despite its nicely thin, sleek and remarkably powerful build and specs, the Y50 doesn’t quite offer the kind of performance that would have made it into a truly 4K PC game-worth piece of computing hardware. Sure, you can play around with the 4K gaming on this Lenovo model but if you want serious PC gaming power at these ultra HD settings, you’ll have to go for something quite a bit more robust. Nonetheless, this is still a great laptop in virtually all other respects and can deliver some excellent gaming performance at less than 4K levels of UHD and HD.
4K performance in the Y50 Touch is great for almost any conventional use. However, for 4K gaming at serious frame rates and high detail levels, you can forget it with the mid-level Nvidia GPU this laptop comes bundled with. The GTX 860M isn’t a real 4K graphics card and unless you don’t mind your high intensity 4K games running at frame rates that crawl far below 30 fps, this is still more of an HD gaming laptop.
The good in the Y50 consists of many aspects because Lenovo definitely invested some effort in making this machine into something robust.
For starters, there is the excellent physical design of the Y50. It’s built to look cool for those interested in something more fun for their laptop while also being the kind of elegant looking machine that a professional user can carry around an office without feeling a bit odd. The sleek design, black body and wonderfully thin, compact build of the Y50 makes it a great piece of portable computing hardware, while the red backlight under the keyboard and the neat, beveled cover lid result in a design that’s just rakish enough to look pretty cool for gamers.
Furthermore, the GPU on this beast of a laptop really does pack a 4K punch, at least as far as most ultra HD graphics rendering is concerned. Content, graphic design visuals and any 4K videos you can get your hands on the web will look awesomely clear with the pixel density the Y50’s screen packs and for the most part, all of these pixels, as well as the laptops general performance, should run very smoothly thanks to the machines powerful internal specs.
Lenovo has also packed in the additional features beyond just the 4K display. The mainstream GPU is solid and a high performer while the touch screen technology in this machine makes for some superior OS navigation on the Windows 8.1 interface that comes native with the Y50.
3.9 - 82 Review
On the other hand, while the Y50 offers some serious processing power and a great GPU, what you get is still not enough for really serious 4K gaming. This is the single biggest defect of this particular model (and likely of many 4K “gaming” model laptops). In reality, while HD gaming and a lot of 1440p gaming might work wonderfully on this machine, getting seriously smooth 4K graphics at 60 frames per second on higher-detail 4K games is not going to really work here.
Furthermore, the 15 inch screen sort of doesn’t let you really appreciate the power of 4K resolution and its 6 million extra pixels. If even 4K TVs with smaller screen sizes of 55 inches look little different from HD models in their overall clarity, you can imagine how hard the difference between Full HD and ultra HD will be to notice on a tiny laptop screen. However, that clarity is still there and if you’re a perfectionist for detail, the Y50 is almost unbeatable in terms of pixel density.
Screen size: 15 inches
Aspect ratio: 16:9
Resolution: 3840 x 2160
Included OS: Windows 8.1
Battery life: roughly 4 hours
Processor: Intel Core i7 2.4 GHz Quad Core
Weight: 5.5 lbs
Storage (Hard drive): 1 TB
GPU (Video card): Nvidia GTX 860M
Connectivity: WiFi, Ethernet, Bluetooth, Fast Ethernet, Gigabit Ethernet, 2 x USB 3.0 ports, 1 x USB 2.0, HDMI 1.4, Headphone/microphone jack
The Y50 Touch offers an impressive 3840 x 2160 pixel 4K resolution to its very tiny 15 inch display screen. This is a massive pixel density we’re talking about and while the difference between HD and ultra HD on a screen this small is hardly going to be noticeable to the naked eye, you can at least rest easy knowing that you simply won’t be able to see pixilation no matter how closely you look, at least for graphics that scale to 4K resolutions (as those of the bundles Windows 8.1 do).
Furthermore, the screen comes with LED backlighting, a 16:9 aspect ratio and One Glass Solution technology for the sake of improving the touch screen features of the screen. With One Glass Solution, the air bonding technology of other designs is removed, causing the display and touchscreen beneath it to be in much closer contact. This means better tough sensitivity in the display and an overall brighter display quality.
As far as how things look on this Y50’s display, the answer is that visuals are quite simply amazing. The Y50 has an HD cousin whose display has been reported to have a number of problems including a washed out color quality, low vibrancy and really terrible off-axis viewing angles. None of these are the case in the Y50 Touch 4K laptop. Colors stand out, off-angle viewing is remarkable decent and brightness on the screen is definitely solid. Furthermore, black tones look deep and overall contrast is thus excellent.
The audio on the Y50 Touch comes in the form of dual stereo speakers and a subwoofer, along with two microphones. There’s also an SPDIF audio out port built into the Y50. There’s not much to say here on the whole except that the audio on this laptop sounds great as far as it goes. For a laptop, the machine delivers some very clear and remarkably loud sound. Furthermore, distortion is minimal at high volumes. However, a pair of high quality external speakers are recommended if you’re really serious about sound quality and clarity.
The physical design of the Y50 Touch 4K is a wonderful thing to behold. Its mix of sleek businesslike traits and rakish touches of gamer-oriented decoration looks great for all sorts of settings and more resembles something you’d see from a company like Alienware instead of Lenovo. The beveled lid gives the whole device a nice edgy look that too many laptops lack. Coolest of all is the red backlighting that has been built into the keyboard and sides. This may be a frivolous feature but it looks damn cool and at least is helpful for typing in low light conditions.
Furthermore, the angular body of the laptop is made from brushed black metal with dark red accentation and red-tinted speaker grilles along the top left and right edges of the interior tray. There is also red accenting on the subwoofer grille beneath the laptops body and along the edges of the connectivity ports.
On the other hand, despite this being labeled as an ideal laptop for gaming (and even 4K gaming) the reality is that even the keyboard isn’t specially built with this feature in mind, as you might find on custom Origin PC or Alienware PC keyboards.
The Y50 Touch comes bundled with Windows 8.1 OS and the touch screen features of this laptop definitely make using the tiles of the Windows start screen a much more hassle-free experience.
The Y50 Touch is an excellent laptop with some superb specs. It’s only real downside is that the built-in GPU is nowhere near good enough for any serious sort of 4K gaming.
The Y50 Touch 4K UHD model 59423621 is currently retailing on Amazon for $1,299.99. Pricier than its nearly identical HD version (the main difference is the screen resolution) but the 4K laptop is worth the extra $300 or so dollars due to a much better display quality, in terms of resolution and vibrancy.
3.9 - 82 Review
• Excellent display graphics
• Enormous pixel density
• Powerful processing and video features
• Beautifully cool design
• 4K works smoothly
• Not a 4K gaming laptop despite screen resolution
• Nvidia GTX 860M GPU too weak for 4K at high FPS