The Lenovo Flex 15 dual-mode notebook was made as a successor to the successful Yoga line. Yoga computers were amazingly flexible, as their brand implies, but also very expensive. The Flex line was launched to give consumers a more affordable option that would still provide great portability and flexibility in both work and play. The Flex 15 is the latest entry in this line and lives up to these standards admirably.
The Lenovo Flex 15 runs the latest 4th generation Haswell processor, either a Core i3 or i5. In addition to running smoothly and quickly, this gives the Flex 15 more battery life and a better graphics capability, since Haswell processors are specifically designed to improve both of these aspects. The battery life tops out at 9 hours, meaning you can use the Flex throughout your workday, even if you never get time to recharge.
The graphics card has been seriously upgraded from the last Flex model, and the Flex 15 is now sporting a 2GB NVIDIA GeForce 740 m GPU. The computer may be more designed as a portable business machine, but it won’t disappoint multitaskers or gamers, either.
Although the Lenovo Flex 15 doesn’t have the Yoga line’s 360 degree rotation, it can pass 180 degrees to ensure easy sharing of information or images. With its rotating screen, you can easily share presentations or slideshows with anyone, or simply share an image quickly with a nearby friend.
The case is a bit lighter than some comparable models, due to the cheaper price of the machine. It’s also a little heavier than the previous Flex model, but it still comes in at just over 5 pounds, so it’s plenty portable. The black case is conservative but sleek, combining fashion and practicality to make a great work machine. It does, sadly, lose the Yoga’s chic backlit keyboard.
Connectivity and Interface
It doesn’t have the most ports, but 2 USB 2.0s, 1 USB 3.0, a 2-in-1 SD card slot, and HDMI are enough to get the job done for most professionals. Intel’s 7260 b, g, n card, with Bluetooth capability available, will keep the Lenovo Flex 15 online anywhere.
The wide, pivoting screen has other advantages than increased resolution or flexibility; it also makes using the touchscreen features of Windows 8 that much smoother and easier. The wider screen also makes room for a full-sized keyboard with a number pad, great for data entry or writers.
Lenovo Flex 15 Pros and Cons
It may not be the most stunning option out there, but the Lenovo Flex 15 is a good computer for a great price. Here are its pros and cons:
• Tablet Capability: The 300 degree rotation of the screen makes is possible to use the Flex 15 as a traditional notebook or as a tablet, whatever is more convenient for you. Make the most of touchscreen features, but always have a full laptop available when you need it.
• Battery Life: The combination of Lenovo’s Energy Management tool and the Haswell processor give the Lenovo Flex 15 a stunning 9 hour battery life than can be a lifesaver on days when you just can’t seem to pause and plug in.
• Graphics Performance: The Haswell processor’s 3d input capabilities also allow it to do more with the same graphics card. You may find the Flex 15 is able to play games that another laptop with similar specs could not.
• Comfortable and Responsive: A high resolution screen with 10-point multi-touch input and a full-sized AccuType keyboard give you all the tools you need to use your machine to its fullest.
• Bloatware: Unfortunately, although Lenovo is great at producing hardware, it insists on pre-installing trials and programs that very few users will actually want to use, making your computer run slower from startup and forcing you to take the time to uninstall these applications.
• Less Durable: The casing is less durable, and this is most obvious in the keyboard. Not only is it no longer backlit, unlike the Yoga, but it is also not spill-resistant, meaning a larger risk of fluid damage to your computer.
Does the Lenovo Flex 15 live up to its title as a more affordable Yoga machine? We say yes. It is flexible and reliable enough to support any professional’s day to day work as well as being a great all-around machine for the student moving between work and play.
Most importantly, it is extremely affordable and a great deal for its price! It’s an excellent pick for anyone with a tight budget who still needs a high-functioning computer.
Processor: up to 4th Gen Intel Core i7
Operating system: Windows 8
Intel HD Graphics 4400
Memory: up to 8GB DDR3
Hard drive: up to 500GB HDD or 128GB SSD
Battery life: up to 9 hours
Display: 15.6″ Full HD 10-point multitouch (1366×768)
Weight: 5.1 lbs (2.3 kg)
Dimentions: 15.04 x 10.47 x 0.87″