Summary and Conclusion
Performance Summary: In Futuremark's PCMark Vantage test suite, the Lenovo Y530 performed quite well in comparison to the more powerful reference systems. In the CPU tests, with its 2.0GHz CPU, the Y530 fell in line just below the slightly faster 2.1GHz processors. The Y530 had its poorest showings in the memories and gaming tests. However, it held its own by shadowing the front runners in the Hard Disk Drive Test, Communications Test, Music Test, and TV and Movies Test. The Hitachi drive in the Lenovo Y530 proved to be a powerful addition for a 5,400 RPM drive and was surely a factor in the strong test results.
The Y530's 15.4" screen, with its native resolution of 1280x800, was bright, and sharp, with good color reproduction and a quick response time. It woke from sleep mode fairly quick and achieved full brightness within seconds. We also like the chassis, and textured case and the keyboard was very responsive. The oversized touch pad was another huge plus. The multimedia buttons, however, did not seem consistent in their activation. Sometimes when one was pushed it would take a few seconds for its light to go brighter, indicating it was activated. Also, it was very hard to get used to the function key being on the outside of the keypad where the control key should be. This may create confusion in customers who have never experienced a non-standard key layout and had to overcome this little quirk.
All little nuisances aside, we found the Lenovo Y530 to be a solid notebook with great performance that competes favorably with other products in its class. It was very quiet at all times and there was never any excessive heat felt when using it in a laptop position. We should also note that Lenovo has recently lowered the retail price on this particular machine from $999 to $849. At that price, we believe the Y530 is a great deal.
We put the Lenovo Y530 though it paces with a number of benchmarks and in real world situations. Never once did we receive any errors or experience any instability. This speaks volumes to the solid package that Lenovo has created. The Lenovo IdeaPad Y530 was a pleasure to use both in the office or at home on the couch. We even went so far as to use this laptop as a base for installing Windows 7 Beta 1 and still it performed flawlessly. If you're in the market for a new notebook, and the Y530's form factor and base specifications are appealing to you, we recommend checking it out.