Let’s start with the good – in fact, very good – things about the Lenovo IdeaPad 3 82KT00AMUS model we’re reviewing. It comes with 8GB of memory, while some pedestrian budget laptops have inadequate 4GB. And not very long ago, a similar economy machine would have had a lowly 1,366-by-768-pixel display instead of the IdeaPad 14’s full HD (1,920-by-1,080) resolution.
Otherwise, this 15.6-inch laptop with a Abyss Blue plastic offers nothing extraordinary from most budget laptops, including the HP 14-fq1021nr and the Acer Aspire 5 (A515-56-50RS model); rocking AMD Ryzen 5 and Intel Core i5 chips, respectively.
The Lenovo IdeaPad 3 will suffice for browsing, email, and homework, but it lacks basic comforts like a backlit keyboard and USB Type-C port, seem in some other economy models we’ve reviewed in recent weeks.
That said, the Acer Aspire 5 A515-56-50RS is a better 15-nch machine for around the same price, with a backlit keyboard, decent port options and solid overall performance, it’s an Editors’ Choice winner if you want to go a little bigger.
Of course, upping your budget a little will get you a much more enjoyable notebook, like the Acer Swift 3 (SF314-42-R9YN) or the Lenovo IdeaPad Gaming 3 (82K20015US), with a dedicated Nvidia GTX 1650 graphics card for gaming.Read More
Lenovo IdeaPad 3 Specifications
- CPU: AMD Ryzen 5 5500U
- Graphics: AMD Radeon 7 Graphics
- RAM: 8GB DDR4
- Screen: 15.6-inch FHD (1,920 x 1,080) LED-backlit display
- Storage: 256GB SSD
- Connectivity: Dual Band 802.11ac Wi-Fi; Bluetooth 4.1
- Camera: 1,280 x 720 webcam
- Weight: 3.1 lbs
- Size: 12.76 x 8.49 x 0.78 inches
Ideapad 3 14 Design: The Budget Question
No match for the classy Asus VivoBook Flip 14, our review unit features a minimalist design, without any distinctive features to set it apart from the competition, save for the signature Abyss Blue color that you don’t find anywhere else. Also, the rectangular design with rounded corners feels premium, with a Lenovo logo emblemed into one corner.
Measuring 0.78 by 12.76 by 8.49 inches, the IdeaPad 82KT00AMUS isn’t much bigger than you typical 14-inch laptops, and it is light too – at 3.1 pounds. It has a pound less on the 4.1-pound Acer Aspire 5, and 3.97 Asus VivoBook 15.
The full HD (1920 by 1080) resolution screen is surrounded by thick bezels, but it looks bright and vibrant for daily productivity. Pressing your thumbnail against the edge of the top bezel slides a privacy shutter over the webcam.
Lenovo Ideapad 3 Inputs : An Uncharacteristic Keyboard
The keyboard is comfortable and includes a numeric keyboard, you’ll be typing passwords there since this laptop has neither a fingerprint reader not a face-recognition camera for Windows Hello. Afterall, Lenovo offers some of the most comfortable keyboards around, and we’re glad they extended that favor into this budget laptop.
Most of the laptop’s ports are on the left edge: an HDMI port, a retro USB 2.0 port, two USB 3.0 ports, and a power connector. Most folks are right-handed, in case you need to use an external mouse, you can plug it here – there’s nothing but an audio jack and an SD card slot. We honestly didn’t expect a Thunderbolt 3 port at this price, but a USB-C port in a painful omission.
Lenovo 82KT00AMUS Performance: More work than play
Lenovo bills the IdeaPad 3 14 as a laptop for work and school, and for the most part it succeeds in these. The solid-state drive (256GB) keeps Windows 10 feeling pretty fast, the 8GB of RAM and the 6-core AMD Ryzen 5 5500U processor help with multi-tasking. For general Windows desktop applications, the Ideapad 82KT00AMUS does a fine job – it doesn’t feel quite as nippy as more expensive laptops, but for daily use, it’s absolutely fine.
The IPS screen is good, not quite washed out, but with contrast that is not quite as strong as we’ve seen on other laptops. However, the full HD screen is welcome, as it makes movies and photos look a lot better than on laptops with lower resolutions.
To be honest, you won’t see much of a difference, and again for general day-to-day tasks, the screen will be fine, especially rocking that Full HD resolution; however, if you’re into editing photos or videos, you may want to look at an alternative machine.
And if you’re a gamer then you should as well look elsewhere, as while the AMD Radeon 7 graphics will handle photos and videos, and maybe a casual game or two, for the most part modern games won’t run well on this laptop – although, and for sure, that’s not what it’s built for. If you must game on a tight budget, our Editors’ Choice for budget gaming, the Lenovo IdeaPad Gaming 3 is an excellent choice.
Lenovo IdeaPad 3 Battery: Almost all-day stamina
Battery life isn’t overly impressive, with the IdeaPad 3 lasting six hours and 43 minutes (and not the advertised 8 hours), which replicates medium to heavy use. If you dim the screen, and keep to light web-browsing and less strenuous tasks, you could eke out even longer life.
Nonetheless, it means that you should get through most of a work day on a full day, which when stacked against some laptops if pretty impressive, and a sign that the more power-efficient processor is paying off.
Should you buy the Lenovo IdeaPad 3 82KT00AMUS?
The Lenovo IdeaPad 3 is a great laptop for work and school. If you’re looking for a mid-range laptop that work empty your pockets, but which isn’t compromised with cheap build quality and out-of-date components, then this is a great choice.
However, while the IdeaPad 3 has no fatal flaws, but it has a few disappointing ones, from a mediocre display and missing USB-C port. It’ll get the job done, but we’ve seen nicer economy notebooks on both the Windows and ChromeBook side of the aisle.
Acer Aspire 5 A515-56-50RS, 15.6" Full HD IPS Display, 11th Gen Intel Core i5-1135G7, Intel Iris Xe Graphics, 8GB DDR4, 256GB NVMe SSD, WiFi 6, Fingerprint Reader, Backlit Keyboard
$549.00 in stock
Lenovo IdeaPad 3
The Lenovo IdeaPad 3 82KT00AMUS is a decent choice if you have the exact money to spend on a Window 10 laptop, of which you get a roomy screen, a little pep, but you can as well get better choices for a close price.
- Good performance for the price
- Sufficient memory
- Deep keyboard
- No USB-C
- Lacks "all day" battery life