Shortly before the official launch of the latest IdeaPad notebook from Lenovo, we were fortunate enough to be given some time to fiddle around with the IdeaPad S400. Built as an entry level laptop with stylish Ultrabook-like dimensions, the S400 is aimed at those who are looking for a notebook with more power than a netbook, and longer battery life than a regular notebook – all in a price that is easy on the wallet.
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As an entry level notebook, the IdeaPad S400 does appear to be quite impressive on the hands, if not on paper. This 14-incher runs on a regular voltage Core i3-2365M (1.4GHz) with 4GB of RAM, and also a 500GB hard disk drive, with a 24GB mSATA flash storage also bundled in. There’s also a dedicated AMD Radeon 7450 GPU as well.
In our brief preview, we ran two benchmark tests on the S400: PCmark 7 and 3Dmark 11, with the results as below:
Lenovo has also included the Accutype keyboard in the S400, which means that its legendary keyboard quality is retained here. There is also an oversized touchpad which is textured to increase sensitivity and accuracy when using it, too.Despite being made of plastic, the IdeaPad S400 feels pretty sturdy, and does not flex when held with one hand at the tapered edges of the laptop. The lid also has very little of the wobbliness that plagues plenty of laptop lids these days. There are also three USB ports (1 of the 3.0 variety) so there should be enough to go around.
The IdeaPad S400 comes preloaded with Windows 7 Home Basic, which we must say boots up rather sluggishly. It may have been the OS itself, or perhaps also the Core i3 processor. Nevertheless, Lenovo’s Boot Optimizer software should help with decreasing the boot-up times with regular usage.
We should be getting the IdeaPad S400 for a longer duration for our review, where we will be exploring the laptop in greater depth. Until then, have a look at the photos, as well as our coverage of the launch event which will be held later today!