Lenovo Ideapad S340 Review – Strongly Built with Lagging Performance
Lenovo has brought the next iteration laptops of its Ideapad series with the launch of – Ideapad S340 series. The new mid-range laptop from Lenovo was first introduced at MWC, 2019 and has shared the similar aesthetics of earlier Ideapad models when it comes to design. The company had unveiled two models of the new Ideapad S340 series that include two screen sizes — a 15.6-inch screen (Ideapad S340-15IWL) and a 14-inch screen (Ideapad S340-14IWL). While both laptops appear to be same except for the display they share pretty much similar specifications at least on paper.
Let’s start with the display, both the Lenovo laptops are offered in FHD resolution display — both in TN & IPS models. Also, there are HD resolution displays offered on these laptops, which would make the cost much cheaper as it is already a budget-friendly laptop. There’s an FHD version of 15.6-inch S340 Ideapad that comes with touchscreen input as well. Under the hood, both the laptops come with 8th-Gen Intel Core i7-8565U, i5-8265U, and i3-8145U Processors and also there’s an Intel Pentium 5405 processor variant as well.
These new Ideapad S340 series laptops ship with Windows 10 Home and are backed by the latest NVIDIA Graphic (N17S-GO / Ni17s-G2) variants and also come with Intel Integrated option too. In terms of storage, the Ideapad S340 series are offered in either 4/8/12GB RAM paired with either SSD or Hybrid storage options of up to 256GB SSD/2TB HDD.
On the I/O front, the Lenovo Ideapad Series feature — one USB Type-C port, two USB 3.0 ports wherein one of it supports charging, an HDMI port, headphone jack and an SD Card Reader too. And, lastly, the Lenovo Ideapad S340 series come with additional features including — backlit keyboard, privacy shutter (hides the web-camera), full numeric keypad alongside the traditional one and also Cortana or Alexa support.
We have tested out the base variant of the Lenovo Ideapad S340 series 14-inch FHD model that featured an 8th-Gen Intel Core i3-8145U processor with Backlit keyboard and full keypad variant.
Here are some thoughts of the new Lenovo’s new Ideapad S340 series
Starting with the design, the Ideapad S340 comes with an attractive design and doesn’t feel heavy (weighs 1.6kg) to hold — thanks to its Carbon fiber blended plastic design. Though it isn’t made by metal alloy as you notice in the competition, this Ideapad design visually looks like one as the display is coated with an aluminum case on top. What the Ideapad sets itself apart from the rival(s) out there is that it can be opened 180-degrees and is available in a wide range of color options including — Onyx Black, Sand Pink, Abyss Blue, and Platinum Grey.
Once you open the Ideapad S340, you are greeted with a 14-inch display with minimal bezels and the privacy shutter webcam, which was earlier constrained to Lenovo’s Thinkpads only. Further, you can witness a full-fledged keyboard (backlit too) including the full number keypad columns as well. However, the trackpad sits slightly to the left and not in the center similar to the earlier released Lenovo laptops.
As for the display, its an FHD display coated with a matte finish, which helps in having better viewing angles in the outdoors as well. The FHD display is certainly bright enough and the colors pop-up out well and doesn’t appear washed-out, despite being an LCD. Binge-watching YouTube or Netflix, reading documents, shouldn’t be a problem as the viewing experience on the laptop is significant. And, this display works well in low light conditions too as the brightness can be lowered to a minimum and to use it in the darker environments is appealing as well, meaning no strain on your eyes.
The typing on the optionally backlit keyboard is good too as there’s enough key travel and the keys feel responsive as well. However, not having the full number keypad would have made the keyboard typing experience more pleasant; nonetheless, it is still there, and in our testing, we couldn’t find it beneficial for having the extra number pad on the laptop.
For privacy concerns, the Ideapad S340’s privacy shutter button with which you can give access to your webcam only when needed and hiding it the remaining time is quite commendable, especially on this budget Ideapad S340 series.
On the whole, the design, build quality and the FHD display, the privacy shutter button for webcam, and the keyboard typing experience and also having multiple storage options as aforementioned indeed are the good takeaway features in getting the new Ideapad S340 laptop.
Before we jump into the performance experience on this new Ideapad S340, we would clarify on what we have put this laptop through for testing for over a week now. The tasks were moderately basic, which included — opening Google Chrome, browsing, editing documents, putting up mails, and occasionally watching YouTube. The Ideapad S340, as stated earlier, is powered by an Intel Core 8th-Gen i3 processor, and the laptop performance is too sluggish and not satisfying. Handling multiple tabs, for instance, two or maybe three had been quite challenging on the Ideapad S340 that could also be due to the base variant we have tested.
Nonetheless, the experience was unquestionably torpid, and the trackpad is evidently unresponsive, at times, again in Chrome, it had been difficult to open a new tab with the trackpad input. The accidental swipes and selecting a text in a document or even scrolling through pages has been slow overall. In our testing, we have experienced the Ideapad S340 hanging/stuck at a webpage for quite a while before loading, which is certainly not the experience we would hope for even if the laptop is running on an Intel’s i3 processor.
However, Windows 10 works flawlessly on the Ideapad S340 with timely updates from Microsoft. The battery life on the latest Ideapad S340 is quite mediocre, and it would give you up to 6-7 hours of battery life on doing the conventional tasks, which we have mentioned earlier in our testing.
On the whole, Lenovo’s IdeaPad S340 14-inch i3-8145U processor model is for those who want to do pretty basic tasks like documenting and browsing and occasionally watching videos as well. It could be a start or an entry-level laptop for new consumers. With a wide variety of storage and processor options provided by Lenovo with its latest Ideapad S340 series, we would recommend going with a slightly high-end model other than the base variants to have a better performance experience altogether. As for the pricing, according to the launch price sent by Lenovo for the variant, which we have tested is priced at Rs 40,290. However, the pricing starts from Rs 38,998 on Flipkart India, and it can go up to Rs 58,990 for the top-end variant. Stay connected to PhoneRadar for more such interesting updates.