The Lenovo Legion 5i Pro is fast in games and applications, it’s very sturdy, and it has an impressive display – it’s a great option if you need a mainstream gaming laptop. That said, it’s heavier and thicker than rivals and battery life could be better, so this isn’t the rig for you if you want something portable and long-lasting.
- Ample power for mainstream gaming and processing tasks
- A large, crisp display with good contrast and colours
- The exterior is smart and packed with ports
- A crisp, satisfying keyboards
- Beefier GPUs required for top-tier games
- The Lenovo’s biggest rival is slimmer, lighter and has a better display
- Underwhelming battery life during gameplay
- An annoying, soft trackpad
- UKRRP: £1899
- USARRP: $1599
- EuropeRRP: €2073
- A rock-solid mid-range gaming specificationThe Nvidia GeForce RTX 3060 will play any mainstream game, the Core i7-12700H is a powerful and versatile CPU, and lightning-fast storage means you get rapid boot and installation times.
- A tall, crisp and impressive displayThe panel’s 16:10 aspect ratio adds height and its 2560 x 1600 resolution means that games look crisp. Quality levels are good, too, with accurate colours and impressive contrast.
- A robust, mature exteriorThe Lenovo looks smarter than many rivals, its build quality is excellent, and its keyboard is crisp and satisfying – even if this machine is a bit heavier than the competition.
The Lenovo Legion 5i Pro is the business firm’s latest salvo into the world of gaming laptops, and don’t fret if the name sounds familiar – we’ve seen the Legion 5 Pro before.
The little “i” on the end of the Legion’s name hints at the biggest difference between the two: the 5i Pro includes an Intel processor, while the standard Legion 5 Pro relies on AMD silicon.
The Intel chip inside the 5i Pro is one of the latest Core i7 parts, and graphical power comes from the reliable Nvidia GeForce RTX 3060. As with the AMD machine, the 5i Pro deploys a 16-inch display with a heightened aspect ratio, and you’ll have to pay £1899 / $1599 / €2073 for this Intel-powered portable – although if you shop around those UK and European prices will likely be lower when you head to the checkout. If you’d like the AMD-based Lenovo instead, it’s been discontinued, presumably to update the design with newer AMD processors.
If you’re weighing up the 5i Pro, though, you’d do well to consider the Asus ROG Zephyrus M16. That’s another 16-inch rig with an impressive design, and its RTX 3060 version costs £1899 / $1649 / €1999, so it competes well with the Lenovo. And, if you want to look beyond these 16in machines, head to our best gaming laptop chart.
Design and Keyboard
- A robust, mature chassis with plenty of connectivity
- The keyboard is crisp and satisfying – ideal for all-day gaming sessions
- The trackpad isn’t particularly good, so get a USB mouse instead
Unsurprisingly, for a Lenovo laptop, this gaming rig shares plenty of DNA with its business stablemates – and that’s no bad thing. The aluminium body is finished in a shade that Lenovo calls Storm Grey, and it contrasts well with the chrome-effect logo on the lid and the keyboard’s RGB LEDs.
The Lenovo Legion 5i Pro is a great choice if you’d prefer your gaming powerhouse to look more subtle. It’s more subdued than the Asus Zephyrus, which had loads of lighting and a hidden rainbow pattern in its dotted lid.
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Lenovo’s laptop pedigree can be seen through the Legion’s great build quality, too, although the 5i does weigh 2.49kg and it’s 27mm thick – so it’s significantly larger than the lithe Asus. Still, it’s not so big that you can’t sling it into a bag.
The Legion’s left-hand edge has a Thunderbolt 4 port and USB-C 3.2 Gen 2 connection, both of which tackle DisplayPort and power delivery. The right-hand side has the audio jack and a full-size USB port – always an irritation when most people are right-handed and will use a mouse. Pleasingly, most of the ports are at the rear, where you’ll find another USB-C port that adds power delivery alongside two more USB 3.2 Gen 1 ports, one of which is always on.
There’s a future-proofed HDMI 2.1 port, too, although the RTX 3060 GPU won’t keep up with its potential bandwidth in many games.
On the inside, the Lenovo has Gigabit Ethernet, dual-band Wi-Fi 6 and Bluetooth 5.1, and the rest of the machine’s features are unsurprising. The 720p webcam doesn’t have Windows Hello login but it does have a privacy shutter, and the speakers are fine for media and gaming, although they’re a bit muddy.
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The keyboard includes a numberpad alongside full-size Return and cursor keys, so I’ve got no layout concerns. Quality levels are good, too: the keyboard’s base is sturdy and the buttons have decent travel and speed, so it’s easy to hammer through games. The Legion’s keys are just as satisfying as those on the Asus, and the Lenovo includes four-zone RGB LED backlighting – an upgrade on the single-zone Zephyrus.
As with the AMD-based Legion machine, the trackpad is spongy and positioned on the left of the machine, so it can be irritating during gameplay. If you’re serious about enjoying your games, buy a USB mouse instead.
Nevertheless, the Legion’s feature set competes well with the slimmer Asus. That laptop did have a Windows Hello webcam and a card reader, but the Lenovo fights back with that better keyboard, more USB connectivity and HDMI 2.1.
- The 16:10 aspect ratio means you get big-screen gaming
- Good contrast and colours, and the screen is extremely bright
- Cannot handle that wider colour gamut
The Lenovo Legion 5i Pro 16-inch screen uses a 16:10 aspect ratio, which means you get more vertical space for games and web browsers, while the 2560 x 1600 resolution delivers a crisper experience than conventional HD panels. Both of those attributes match the specification inside the Asus.
The 165Hz refresh rate and 3ms response time are identical to the Zephyrus. Those figures are great for single-player gaming and everyday eSports, but not high enough for top-tier competitive players.
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The Lenovo’s brightness level of 476 nits is huge and high enough for indoor and outdoor use, and the contrast ratio of 1190:1 is good – it provides solid depth and vibrancy, even if darker areas could be a little deeper. The delta E of 2.11 ensures accurate colours, and the screen rendered 94.9% of the sRGB colour gamut. That’s just about enough for mainstream games.
Those figures make mainstream games look superb, but the Asus has a slightly better screen – its contrast and sRGB coverage figures are a bit better, so games will look punchier and more colourful.
Lenovo also boasts that this screen adheres to the VESA DisplayHDR 400 gamut, but that’s an entry-level protocol that won’t have a big impact – and the screen’s DCI-P3 coverage level of 70.7% isn’t high enough for professional-grade content creation.
- Plenty of mainstream gaming power
- Isn’t too loud or hot
- Option of RTX 3070 Ti GPU instead
The RTX 3060 is a mid-range graphics core with a moderate 3,840 Nvidia Ampere cores alongside 6GB of memory, and in this laptop the RTX 3060 has 115W of maximum powe