Lenovo ThinkPad Edge E420s Laptop Review

Article Index

Game Tests & Battery Life

FarCry 2
DirectX Gaming Performance


FarCry 2

Like the original, FarCry 2 is one of the more visually impressive games to be released on the PC to date. Courtesy of the Dunia game engine developed by Ubisoft, FarCry 2's game-play is enhanced by advanced environment physics, destructible terrain, high resolution textures, complex shaders, realistic dynamic lighting, and motion-captured animations. We benchmarked the test systems in this article with the FarCry 2 benchmark tool using one of the built-in demo runs recorded in the "Ranch" map.

For the same reason you don't buy a screwdriver to hammer a nail, you're not going to grab the E420s for intense gaming sessions. As we'll show in just a moment, the E420s is capable of playing less demanding games with some compromises to visual quality settings, but for more hardcore titles, the Intel HD 3000 Graphics chip simply lacks the pixel pushing power required.

 Left 4 Dead 2
 Gaming Performance


Left 4 Dead 2

In our Left 4 Dead 2 test, we use a custom Time Demo that involves plenty of fast action, some explosions, and plenty of people and objects on the screen at the same time.

We ran our custom Time Demo at a variety of settings to give you a sense of how the E420s scales and what's required to pull playable framerates. In this case, it wasn't the resolution that taxed the Intel HD 3000 Graphics chip, but the AA and AF settings. By dialing these back, we're able to produce a stutter-free game experience, even at the notebook's native 1366x768 (HD) screen resolution. What this tells us is that game playing, while not ideal, is achievable here in certain titles, Left 4 Dead 2 obviously being one of them.

 

Battery Life
Power Performance

As we've said on numerous occasions, our BatterEater Pro benchmark is absolutely brutal, and so is the way we run it. To represent an absolute worst case scenario. BEPro proceeds to the tax the system nonstop until it runs out of juice, which for the E420s came out to 56 minutes.

On one hand, keep in mind that you're going to get much more than just an hour of runtime on a single charge, even if you watch a movie the entire time. However, giving up the ghost after 56 minutes, while not representative of real-world usage, checks in at the bottom of the pack compared to other recently reviewed laptops. Why so poor? Well, according to Lenovo's own 'Power and Performance' utility included in its ThinkVantage Toolbox, the main battery is operating at 78 percent of its original capacity when fully charged, and we suspect that's the culprit.


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