The best Lenovo gaming laptops you can buy right now

Lenovo is one of the leading manufacturers when it comes to the best gaming laptops. The company’s commitment to innovation is evident in the raw processing power of the latest chips and the precision cooling systems that ensure peak performance.

Even in the design department, Lenovo gaming laptops continue to boast a distinctly industrial look that is universal across its range. They might not be as flashy or flamboyant as something from Asus or Alienware, but there’s a level of sophistication that makes these devices suitable for various settings beyond gaming environments. Here’s a look at some of the best Lenovo gaming laptops if you are planning to buy one.

Lenovo Legion Pro 9i

The Lenovo Legion Pro 9i is a gaming powerhouse boasting top-tier specs, innovative features, and a design that stands out in the crowded gaming laptop arena. The laptop defies expectations with its high-end specifications, including the powerful Intel Core i9-13980HX mobile CPU, an RTX 4090 GPU, and a liquid cooling system. Yes, you read that right, it comes with a built-in liquid cooling solution to deliver the best thermal performance.

Co-engineered with Cooler Master, the liquid cooling solution is designed not just for temperature control, but also to maintain a slim profile. Surprisingly portable given its power, the Legion 9i is notably compact at 0.75 inches thick and 5.51 pounds, making it more manageable than other gaming behemoths.

The lid of the Lenovo Legion 9i.
Jacob Roach / Digital Trends

The design is a fusion of aesthetics and functionality that features a forged carbon top cover that not only adds a unique visual appeal, but also contributes to the laptop’s lighter weight. You also get a unique avant-garde camo pattern covering the lid, along with RGB accents and a per-key RGB keyboard.

The display, while maintaining a standard 16-inch size, offers impressive specifications with a 3.2K resolution, a 165Hz refresh rate, and a mini-LED option reaching up to 1200 nits peak brightness. While color accuracy is slightly off out of the box, the display is excellent for gaming and media consumption.

Lenovo Legion 9i keyboard and trackpad.
Fionna Agomuoh / Digital Trends

Lenovo maintains its reputation for an excellent balance of ports, offering Thunderbolt 4, USB-A, HDMI 2.1, Ethernet, and more. The Legion 9i’s keyboard, though great for gaming, comes with a unique feature: replaceable keycaps that add a touch of customization.

The charger plugged into the Lenovo Legion 9i.
Jacob Roach / Digital Trends

Powered by the 24-core Intel Core i9-13980HX, the Legion 9i excels in CPU performance, with multi-core dominance demonstrated in benchmarks. Real-world performance, particularly in applications like Premiere Pro, further highlights its capabilities. Gaming performance is where the Legion 9i truly shines, rivaling top competitors and even outperforming larger laptops. The liquid cooling enables sustained high performance without sacrificing portability. The laptop handles ray tracing effortlessly, providing a top-notch gaming experience, especially when connected to an external monitor.

However, the Legion 9i’s battery life is understandably limited due to its power-hungry components and bright mini-LED display. But on the flip side, you get two chargers out of the box– a massive 330W GaN charger for gaming and a portable 140-watt USB-C charger for on-the-go use.

Despite minor drawbacks, such as a small trackpad and color accuracy, the Legion 9i stands out as a gaming laptop worth its premium price. Currently, the notebook is selling at a starting price of $3,200, which is actually not bad for a machine that is loaded with top-of-the-line hardware in a thin chassis and has an effective liquid cooling solution.

Lenovo Legion Pro 5

The Legion Pro 5 earns high praise for its exceptional performance and competitive pricing.

Starting at $1,250, the base configuration sets a benchmark for current-gen laptops, delivering robust performance with features like an RTX 4060 mobile graphics card, 1TB storage, 16GB DDR5 memory, and an AMD Ryzen 7 7745HX. It’s challenging to find a match for this value proposition. While there are more affordable gaming laptops, very few manage to strike the right balance between performance and price as effectively as the Legion Pro 5.

Cyberpunk 2077 on the Lenovo Legion Pro 5.
Jacob Roach / Digital Trends

Beyond performance, the Legion Pro 5 distinguishes itself through its thoughtful design, notably in its port selection. Often overlooked, but also crucial, the placement and number of ports significantly impact the user experience. The laptop impressively integrates two USB 3.2 Gen 1 Type-A ports, a full-size Ethernet port, a USB-C supporting up to 140W of power, and an HDMI 2.1 port at the rear that minimizes cable clutter. Additional USB-A ports on both sides, accompanied by a USB-C port on the left, enhance connectivity convenience.

Lenovo’s reputation for crafting superior laptop keyboards draws inspiration from its ThinkPad series and is evident in the Legion Pro 5. While the keyboard might not surpass others for extended typing sessions, it remains comfortably usable.

The lid on the Lenovo Legion Pro 5.
Jacob Roach / Digital Trends / Digital Trends

Despite its commendable features, the Legion Pro 5 is not without minor drawbacks. Its bulkiness and the presence of a sizable power brick are inherent to gaming laptops. Additionally, the 2,560 x 1,600 screen, while decent with a 165Hz refresh rate and good color accuracy, falls slightly short compared to competitors like the ROG Zephyrus M16, which boasts local dimming and a 240Hz refresh rate.

Keyboard on the Lenovo Legion Pro 5.
Jacob Roach / Digital Trends / Digital Trends

However, these minor issues pale in comparison to the Legion Pro 5’s overall strengths. Its exceptional value for the level of performance it offers. Couple that with top-notch build quality and it becomes a standout choice in its class.

Legion Slim 5 14

The Lenovo Legion Slim 5 14 for 2023 is a formidable gaming laptop that manages to strike a balance between high-end performance and portability. Boasting a compact 14-inch design, it offers users a powerful gaming experience without sacrificing mobility.

The Legion Slim 5 14 distinguishes itself as one of the best compact gaming laptops Lenovo has ever made. In fact, it offers better value when compared to the most popular 14-inch gaming notebook, the Asus ROG Zephyrus G14. Currently available at a starting price of $1,200, the laptop can be equipped with up to an AMD Ryzen 7 7840HS CPU, Nvidia RTX 4060 GPU, 32GB of LPDDR5x-6400 RAM, and a spacious 1TB M.2 PCIe 4.0 NVMe SSD. These specifications position it as a strong competitor in the gaming laptop market for users who demand both power and convenience.

The Legion Slim 5 14 on a desk with peripherals on it.
Lenovo

Apart from powerful hardware, the Legion Slim 5 14 has an attractive display. The laptop features a 14.5-inch 2.8K OLED display with a resolution of 2880×1800, a 120Hz refresh rate, and a 16:10 aspect ratio. This OLED panel not only provides a visually immersive gaming experience with deep contrast, but also caters to creators with its VESA DisplayHDR True Black 500 and Dolby Vision capabilities, ensuring precise color reproduction for professional tasks.

The design of the laptop is noteworthy for its premium feel. Constructed entirely from aluminum, the device has beveled edges and rounded corners, contributing to its sleek and modern appearance. Weighing at 1.75 kilograms, the 14-inch model is notably lightweight, enhancing its portability for users who are frequently on the move.

A top-down press photo of the Legion Slim 5 14.
Lenovo

Performance-wise, the Legion Slim 5 14 lives up to expectations. Driven by the AMD Ryzen 7 7840HS CPU and Nvidia RTX 4060 GPU, the laptop should deliver strong gaming performance at 1440p resolution. Despite its smaller 73.6 watt-hour battery, the Legion Slim 5 14 is claimed to offer all-day battery life, making it a viable option for both work and play. The reason for that is mostly due to the power-efficient AMD chipset and the inclusion of an OLED display.

For a 14-inch laptop, it features a wide variety of ports, including two USB-C 3.2 (Gen 2) ports, two USB-A 3.2 (Gen 2) ports, HDMI 2.1, an SD card reader, and a 3.5mm audio combo. That’s plenty more than any 14-inch gaming notebook out there.

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This post was originally published on Digital Trends

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