Lenovo Ideapad U110: Price, Battery, Performance
Lenovo sells the U110, as configured in our review unit, direct from its web site for $1749—that’s $150 off the price when it first launched a few months ago, and slightly cheaper than some of the ultraportables in this roundup. Lenovo understands that, while ultraportables are premium machines, in the current U.S. economy consumers need to be motivated to buy an item like this. It seems unlikely that a corporate IT department, or even a high-salaried executive, would be the typical buyer of this very consumer-oriented computer, so Lenovo is attempting to price this machine to sell in the consumer market. In a price-per-performance measurement, this machine would likely come out on the top of this roundup. It is cheaper than the Asus U2E by $150, and features a more powerful processor, and with the low-end/light-weight batteries compared, a better battery life.
But, the battery life of that small battery still isn’t great, and the U110’s still got a slow hard drive, a funky keyboard, strange screen, and external optical drive to consider in your calculus. Whether the stylish color and markings on the body excite you or annoy you will also affect your opinion of whether this machine is worth $1749—but to my taste, it is.
Price score: 4
According to BatteryEater Pro, the Lenovo U110’s larger battery was rated at a capacity of around 5268 mAh; it actually charged to a somewhat higher capacity of 5334 mAh. But with its higher speed processor (see below), the U110 only lasted for 91 minutes on a full charge.
Lenovo also ships the machine with a second, much smaller battery (you can see the difference in the way the two batteries protrude from the back of the computer on the previous page). We didn’t include this smaller battery’s performance in our scoring, but suffice to say that it is close to worthless—it lasted through only 30 minutes of BatteryEater’s battering. It probably delivers about an hour and a half of normal productivity computing, though, so it’s a nice little stick to keep in your bag, charged up for an emergency power boost. Kudos to Lenovo for including it at all.
Battery Life score: 2.20
Our Lenovo U110 came with a higher performing mobile CPU, Intel’s 1.6 GHz Core 2 Duo L7500. However, like the Asus U2E, the notebook had only a 4,200 RPM ATA hard disk drive. The U110 achieved the second best performance score of the five machines in this test.
Performance score: 3.43