Saturday, June 18, 2011

Lenovo IdeaPad V460

The V460 has mid-range components which are enough to handle just about any modern application (within reason). This is not a gaming machine; the Nvidia G310M graphics will not go far with today's 3D games. However, for general use there is more than ample performance. The Intel Core i5 processor has two cores, enabling users to run several programs at a time without slowing down. The V460's 4GB of RAM is plenty for running modern programs. The included 320GB 5400RPM drive is whisper quiet, but slow.

Our Lenovo IdeaPad V460 has the following specifications:

* 14-inch 720p (1366 x 768) glossy display with LED backlighting
* Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit
* Intel Core i5-430M dual-core processor (2.26GHz up to 2.40GHz Turbo Boost, 3MB L3, 2.5GT/s QPI, 35W TDP)
* Intel HM55 chipset
* Switchable graphics:
* Dedicated Nvidia GeForce G310M 1GB
* Integrated Intel HD graphics
* 4GB DDR3-1066 dual-channel RAM (2x 2GB)
* 320GB 5400RPM Western Digital hard drive (WD3200BEVT)
* Intel Wireless Wi-Fi Link 1000
* Integrated biometric fingerprint reader
* DVD burner (HL-DT-ST DVDRAM GT30N)
* 1-year limited warranty
* 6-cell li-ion battery (11.1V, 48Wh)
* Weight: 4.85 lbs.
* Dimensions: 13.4” x 9.3” x 0.8~1.3”
* MSRP: $799

The specifications are slightly less than expected for this price range, however this review will show whether the promised "good build" quality makes up for the gap.

Build and Design
The IdeaPad V460 has a stylish professional look which is at home in nearly any environment. The chassis and lid are covered in finely brushed aluminum, which not only feels great, but adds strength. The V460 weighs in at 4.85 lbs, which is slightly more than usual for a 14-inch notebook. The chassis is relatively thin with an average height of about one inch. The V460's build quality is above average for its price range. Grabbing the two front corners of the chassis and twisting produces minimal flex. The chassis surface is rigid and does not bend under pressure thanks to the aluminum.

The lid is reasonably strong and does not feel flimsy; however, applying pressure to the back of the display with my fingers produced some ripples on the screen; the aluminum did not help as much here as I thought it would. My main complaint with the V460's design is the use of black glossy plastic for the screen surround; it attracts and shows dust and fingerprints easily and is difficult to keep clean.

Fit and finish is good; gaps between parts is consistent and there are no sharp or unfinished edges. There are volume up, down, and mute buttons above the keyboard. They are touch-enabled and work well. Unlike most notebooks in its class, the V460 has a biometric fingerprint reader built into the palm rest area. Overall the V460 has good build quality and good looks. The use of aluminum on the exterior makes a big difference.
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