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Lenovo IdeaPad Z560 review

Great performance and build quality from this excellent mid-range laptop

Our Verdict

Product features

  • Screen Resolution : 1366 x 768
  • Processor Core : Dual-core (2 Core)

View full specification

For

  • Powerful performance
  • Good graphics power
  • Connectivity
  • Good screen

Against

  • Battery life

Lenovo is probably best known for its business ThinkPad range, but the consumer-focused IdeaPad Z560 is an excellent mid-priced portable with a highly impressive specification.

This laptop features an Intel Core i3 processor and the difference over its rivals is impressive, producing good benchmarking scores. There's more than enough power for multi-tasking with system-intensive software and we noticed no slowdown at any point.

Even more impressive considering the price is the dedicated Nvidia graphics card, which again topped our benchmarking tests. Multimedia tasks such as photo and video editing are easily dispatched, and you can even run fairly recent games with suitable ease, albeit with some of the detail settings turned down slightly.

Most users will find the 320GB of hard drive storage space plenty, only filled quickly by those with large media collections, while the 5-in-1 memory card reader allows instant access to your holiday snaps and other media.

A full range of ports includes VGA and HDMI for connecting monitors, eSATA for rapid data transfers and even an ExpressCard slot for attaching peripherals.

802.11n Wi-Fi allows speedy wireless networking, with 10/100 Ethernet available for wired connections. All of this is packed inside a firm plastic chassis featuring a smart metallic design.

We noticed no weak areas, so you can take this laptop on the road with confidence. At 2.6kg, its weight matches the other 15.6-inch laptops, but the 192 minute battery life is unimpressive and beaten by most of the laptops at this price point, so you'll need to pack the charger.

Bright display

The black lid does a reasonable job of hiding fingerprints but, unfortunately, doesn't bend too far past vertical, so the 15.6-inch screen is best viewed when the laptop is sitting on a desk. Still, it's one of the brightest displays and almost as vibrant as the PC NextDay ZooStorm 3389-9209/B.

The 1366 x 768 resolution matches most other laptops at this price point, so images are reasonably sharp.

An isolation-style keyboard is in place and is perfect for touch-typing. There's room for a dedicated numeric keypad, and a row of touch-sensitive buttons just above the board performs various quick access functions.

Lenovo ideapad z560

We also liked the textured touchpad which has a scrollbar along the right edge for quickly navigating documents and web pages.

The IdeaPad Z560 is a great all-rounder with many strengths and few weaknesses. The Core i3 processor and dedicated GPU provide fantastic performance, while the well-built chassis is packed with features. Only flawed portability detracts from this highly polished package.

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Tech Specs

Product TypeNotebook
Hard Drive Capacity500 GB
Processor ManufacturerIntel
Graphics Controller ManufacturerNVIDIA
Graphics Controller ModelGeForce 310M
BluetoothYes
Wireless LANYes
Optical Drive TypeDVD-Writer
Maximum Battery Run Time3.50 Hour
eSATAYes
HDMIYes
WebcamYes
Backlight TechnologyLED
Product FamilyIdeaPad Z560
Operating System Architecture64-bit
Processor Modeli3-370M
Operating SystemWindows 7 Home Premium
Brand NameLenovo
Processor Speed2.40 GHz
Processor TypeCore i3
Screen Size39.6 cm (15.6")
Number of Cells6-cell
Screen Resolution1366 x 768
Standard Memory4 GB
Weight (Approximate)2.60 kg
Cache3 MB
Processor CoreDual-core (2 Core)
64-bit ProcessingYes
Optical Media SupportedDVD±R/±RW
Dual-Layer Media SupportedYes
Graphics Memory CapacityUp to 512 MB
Display Screen TypeActive Matrix TFT Colour LCD
Wireless LAN StandardIEEE 802.11n
Bluetooth StandardBluetooth 2.1
Ethernet TechnologyGigabit Ethernet
Total Number of USB Ports3
Memory StandardDDR3-1066/PC3-8500
Height34.9 mm
Width376.8 mm
Depth249.8 mm
Screen ModeWXGA
Memory TechnologyDDR3 SDRAM
Product SeriesZ560
ManufacturerLenovo Group Limited
Product ModelM37KMUK
Product NameIdeaPad Z560 M37KMUK Notebook
Pointing Device TypeTouchPad
Product LineIdeaPad
Aspect Ratio16:9
Manufacturer Part NumberM37KMUK
Manufacturer Website Addresshttp://www.lenovo.com/uk/en/
Marketing Information

IdeaPad notebooks go beyond the bounds of the dreaded "normal." IdeaPad laptops will surprise you with their inventiveness. This one is shockingly light for the screen size and that one plays 3D content. There's even one that shape-shifts from laptop to tablet? Awesome!

Maximum Memory8 GB
Battery ChemistryLithium Ion (Li-Ion)
Package Contents
  • IdeaPad Z560 M37KMUK Notebook
  • Lithium Ion Battery
  • AC Adapter
Limited Warranty1 Year