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Lenovo IdeaPad S205 review

Our Rating :
Price when reviewed : £337
inc VAT

The next evolution of the netbook - it might lack the visual flair of its rivals, but the IdeaPad S205 gets everything else right


11.6 in 1,366×768 display, 1.5kg, 1.6GHz AMD E-350, 4.00GB RAM, 500GB disk, Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit

Watching video on an 11in screen isn’t ideal, but the impressive image quality makes the IdeaPad S205 one of the better laptops to do it on. There was ample contrast at the default picture settings and the 1,366×768 screen made everything look incredibly sharp. Colours appeared slightly muted, but it only took 30 seconds to increase the colour gamut using the graphics driver. There was very little bleed from the backlight, but brightness was only average. Viewing angles were also reasonable, but not exceptional: horizontal angles were great, but there were limited vertical angles. The glossy screen reflects a great deal of light, but thankfully there’s enough screen tilt that this shouldn’t be a serious issue.

Lenovo IdeaPad S205 keyboard

Typing on the full-size keyboard was a pleasure, thanks to the tight spring action in each key, although it wasn’t all good news. The touchpad below is incredibly compact, which can make navigating the desktop at 1,366×768 slightly laborious. Multi-touch gestures are supported, but anyone with large hands will struggle to use them consistently. The touchpad is at least made of a very smooth plastic that creates minimal friction, but the buttons below it are far from ideal. Long travel and almost no tactile feedback made us constantly doubt whether our clicks were being registered by the operating system.

Lenovo IdeaPad S205 left

We really liked the IdeaPad S205; it’s a much bigger step up from the average netbook than we’ve seen from other companies that use AMD processors, paired with a high resolution screen and excellent keyboard. If you want something inexpensive for web browsing, but would prefer a laptop keyboard to a tablet touchscreen, this is definitely one of the best.

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Basic Specifications

Rating *****
Processor AMD E-350
Processor clock speed 1.6GHz
Memory 4.00GB
Memory slots 1
Memory slots free 0
Maximum memory 4,096GB
Size 28x289x191mm
Weight 1.5kg
Sound Conexant SmartAudio HD
Pointing device touchpad


Viewable size 11.6 in
Native resolution 1,366×768
Graphics Processor AMD Radeon HD 6310M
Graphics/video ports VGA, HDMI
Graphics Memory 384MB


Total storage capacity 500GB
Optical drive type none

Ports and Expansion

USB ports 3
Bluetooth yes
Wired network ports 1x 10/100
Wireless networking support 802.11n
PC Card slots none
Supported memory cards SDHC, MMC, Memory Stick Pro
Other ports minijack audio output, minijack microphone input


Carrying case No
Operating system Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit
Operating system restore option restore partition
Software included Microsoft Office 2010 Starter edition
Optional extras none

Buying Information

Warranty one year collect and return
Price £337

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