If you have been following me, you know that in the last two months I have been dealing with the aftermath of my basement flooding from a sump pump failure. It was only a couple of inches of clean water throughout my basement, but it did some major damage to the majority of our basement.
Besides the structural stuff that had to be taken care of in the house, there was also the loss of our luggage, shoes, keepsakes, and two devices that I had brought home from work.
One was a upper level Chromebook that had an i5 processor as opposed to the Celeron that most Chromebooks come with. The other device was my Lenovo performance laptop that had a high performance graphics card and some other pretty beefy specifications.
Replacing the Chromebook isn't that big of a deal, but the laptop is something I frequently use for work as well as some gaming on the side so I really needed to get that replaced.
I wanted to keep the cost low while still having good hardware, so I was looking at an Asus laptop with a Ryzen processor in it. Unfortunately, after placing the order, my vendor informed me that the model of Asus I wanted was discontinued. I was specifically looking for something with the 2060 graphics card versus the 1660 that many budget gaming laptops seem to come with.
I have a decent desktop computer at work and when I am gaming at home I prefer to be in the same room as my wife and dog, so I have been choosing the laptop form factor for quite a few years now. I also went with a 15" because I feel the 17" laptops are just too unwieldy and obnoxious.
The laptop itself is quite heavy and as you will see in the picture below, the power supply is pretty significant. I guess it has to be to run the 9th generation i7 processor that is in the laptop as well as the dedicated graphics card.
The laptop also comes with 16 GB of RAM and two hard drives, one solid state and the other traditional. I really loved my old Lenovo so I am pretty happy with the build quality of this one as well. I would have used my old one for many years had it not ended up water logged.
I know there are some more big name brands out there when it comes to gaming laptops, but my vendors only have access to certain brands and I wanted to keep the cost fairly low since my work was paying for it.
It has a backlit keyboard and I haven't figured it out yet, but I am pretty sure I can change the colors of the backlight should I be so inclined. If you want to see all of the ports and actual specs of the machine, I suggest you head over to the Lenovo website. I know this is an unboxing, but I am not going to bore you with all of those details.
It only took about two minutes to have it setup and sitting at my desktop ready for me to start playing with it. The first thing I did was install Diablo III and Steam.
It wasn't quite as sharp as my old laptop, but I knew that the graphics card in this machine was a little lower end than the other one even though it is from a newer family.
It's hard to tell from the picture, but it actually looked pretty good. I wasn't complaining, but things seemed a little "big" to me. I went into the settings and realized that the resolution wasn't at the highest setting.
I quickly made the adjustment and I ended up with the screen that you see above. You probably have to look really closely to see many differences in the quality, but I can assure you, they are there. I should have just taken a screenshot as opposed to using my cell phone to take a picture.
My old laptop had some quirky issues with the graphics driver occasionally failing and the screen going snowy or black. That doesn't appear to be happening with this one and I am just going to chalk it up to the fact that he old one was an open box return when I bought it.
All that being said, if you are looking for a moderately priced gaming laptop, I would highly recommend the Lenovo Legion Y540. They have configurations available from under $1000 USD and the ability to upgrade if your budget allows.