Our Lenovo IdeaPad Y480 review unit has the following specifications:
Our review unit has a painfully high MSRP of roughly $1,500 and at that price we have a hard time recommending this purchase. That said, at the time of this writing Lenovo is selling this exact configuration on the Lenovo.com website for $869.00 with a coupon code. At that price the IdeaPad Y480 is a much more tempting value.
The Intel Core i7-3610M quad-core processor is part of the "3rd Generation Intel Core" family and has a standard clock speed of 2.3GHz (up to 3.3GHz with Turbo Boost). Thanks to hyper-threading technology this processor acts like an 8-core CPU. You also get Intel HD Graphics 4000 and the ability to play DirectX 11 games, but the real story is the NVIDIA GeForce GT 640M graphics ... well, actually, the GeForce GT 640M "LE."
Although it isn't made clear on the Lenovo website at the time of this writing, the dedicated graphics inside the IdeaPad Y480 are not the full GT 640M. The NVIDIA GeForce GT 640M LE is essentially the same as the standard GT 640M but the graphics clock is limited to 500 MHz and the memory bandwidth is limited to 28.8 GB/sec. (compared to 625 MHz and 64 GB/sec. with the GT 640M). This will negatively impact performance in some graphically intense games and make no difference whatsoever while watching HD video or playing other games.
For example, the old 3DMark06 gaming benchmark actually shows that the IdeaPad Y480 delivers better graphic performance than the Acer Timeline Ultra M3 (equipped with the GT 640M) thanks to the fact that the Y480 has a better processor and twice the amount of system RAM. On the other hand, the newer 3DMark 11 benchmark shows that the GeForce GT 460M LE inside the Y480 has notably less performance in DirectX 11 games. Still, the Lenovo provides a better gaming experience than the ASUS N53SM equipped with the GeForce GT 630M. After all is said and done, the IdeaPad Y480 delivers a pretty good multimedia and gaming experience.
Performance and Benchmarks
wPrime processor comparison results (lower scores mean better performance):
PCMark Vantage measures overall system performance (higher scores mean better performance):
PCMark 7 is a newer benchmark which measures overall system performance (higher scores mean better performance):
3DMark06 measures overall graphics performance for gaming (higher scores mean better performance):
3DMark11 measures overall graphics performance in DirectX 11 games (higher scores mean better performance):
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