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Lenovo Legion 5i Gen 6 (2021) Review: Plenty Powerful For Mainstream Gaming And Streaming
Lenovo Legion series of gaming laptops offer a unique proposition with a lot of SKUs. It consists of both affordable and premium gaming laptops. This time around, we are testing the latest iteration of the Lenovo Legion 5i Gen 6, powered by the 11th Gen Intel Core i7-11800H CPU and NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3050 mobile GPU.
- 120Hz refresh rate display
- Good keyboard
- Trendy design
- Just 4GB VRAM
While the laptop carries a price tag of Rs. 153,490, the device is actually available for Rs. 112,990 on the Lenovo India website. Is this gaming laptop worth the asking price, does it still make sense to buy this in 2022? We have answered all these questions in our full review of the Lenovo Legion 5i Gen 6 (2021).
Lenovo Legion 5i Gen 6 (2021) Specifications
- CPU: Intel Core i7-11800H
- Display: 15.6-inch IPS LCD (1920 x 1080) 120Hz
- GPU: NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3050 (4GB)
- Memory: 16GB DDR4
- Storage: 512GB PCIe Gen4
- Battery: 60WHr
- OS: Windows 11
Lenovo Legion 5i Gen 6 (2021) Design: Gaming Inspired Look
The Legion series of gaming laptops have their own signature design, which helps distinguish it from other gaming laptops. From the bold Legion logo to the subtle Lenovo embossment on the back, one can easily find out that this is indeed a gaming laptop from Lenovo.
From the exhaust grills to the I/O on the back, I liked the design approach on the Lenovo Legion 5i Gen 6 (2021). Again, the Lenovo Legion 5i Gen 6 (2021) is not as thin as something like the Lenovo Legion 7i and also lacks flashy RGB. However, the Legion 7i does cost a lot more than (almost three folds more), and it actually looks similar from a distance if not identical.
Like most gaming laptops, the Lenovo Legion 5i Gen 6 (2021) has an extensive range of I/O, and most of them are located on the back of the laptop, which is again a very typical feature of a Legion laptop. I personally like this design, as it helps to hide most cables and makes the table look cluttery-free.
The laptop has three USB 3.2 Gen 1, and an additional always-on USB 3.2 Gen 1 port, which can be used to charge smartphones and other accessories. The device also has a Thunderbolt 4 port with support for DisplayPort 1.4 output, HDMI 2.0 port, RJ45 Ethernet port, and a 3.5mm audio port. The laptop does miss out on an SD card slot, which is a bummer, especially for content creators.
The Lenovo Legion 5i Gen 6 (2021) weighs 2.4KG, hence, the laptop can be considered as a medium-sized 15-inch gaming laptop. Overall, the Lenovo Legion 5i Gen 6 (2021) is a well-designed mid-tier gaming laptop that does look striking. However, if you like flashy RGB lighting, you might get a bit disappointed.
Lenovo Legion 5i Gen 6 (2021) Display: Good For Gaming
The Lenovo Legion 5i Gen 6 (2021) comes with a 15.6-inch IPS LCD screen with a 120Hz refresh rate. The display has a peak brightness level of 250nits, which is the drawback of this panel. The higher refresh rate makes this a good panel for gaming. However, not so much for content consumption.
I felt that the panel was not bright enough, especially in a well-lit room. Even while watching movies and web series, I felt that the contrast ratio isn't that great, which is again an issue related to the lower brightness. I also noticed a bit of light bleeding when a scene on a game or a movie turns the entire screen into a single solid color like black or white.
Do note that most people might not notice any of these issues. As I came from using a high-end laptop -- the Asus ROG Zephyrus S17, I felt that Lenovo has made some compromises when it comes to the display. Considering this is a gaming laptop, it is really good that the panel supports a peak refresh rate of 120Hz, albeit, the GeForce RTX 3050 might not be able to drive any game at stable 120fps.
Lenovo Legion 5i Gen 6 (2021): Keyboard And Trackpad
The Lenovo Legion 5i Gen 6 (2021) has a full-sized keyboard with a dedicated num pad. The keyboard does offer a backlight (two levels). However, it is just a mono color (white) backlighting. Given the laptop costs well over a lakh, the company should have offered at least three or four zoned RGB lighting.
Coming to the keys themselves, they offer plenty of key travel and I did not notice any mushiness while typing or gaming. The trackpad is on point with the competition, and does support various gesture controls, and is pretty smooth to use.
Lenovo Legion 5i Gen 6 (2021): Speakers And Web Camera
The Lenovo Legion 5i Gen 6 (2021) has above-average stereo speakers. The dual 2W speakers with support for Nahimic Audio are loud enough and the sound can easily fill a room with ease. I also liked the clarity of the sound, even at the 100 percent volume, albeit, I felt that the speaker setup does lack the thumping bass.
There is a 720 web camera on the top bezel, which is again similar to most laptops. The camera does a great job, and the Lenovo Legion 5i Gen 6 (2021) can be used for normal video conferences and game streaming, given the room has good lighting. I hope Lenovo includes at least a 1080p web camera in the future version of the Legion 5i.
Lenovo Legion 5i Gen 6 (2021): CPU And GPU
The Lenovo Legion 5i Gen 6 (2021) is powered by the Intel Core i7-11800H, which is an upper mid-range H series mobile CPU from Intel with eight cores and sixteen threads. The CPU has a max clock speed of 4.6GHz and a TDP of (max) 45W.
The NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3050 laptop takes care of the graphics on the Lenovo Legion 5i Gen 6 (2021). The GPU is plenty powerful for 1080p gaming.
However, it just comes with 4GB of video memory, which could be a limiting factor while playing some games which require higher memory bandwidth. The RTX 3050 laptop has a TGP of 95W and the laptop comes with a 230W power adapter, which is again plenty enough to power the Lenovo Legion 5i Gen 6 (2021).
Lenovo Legion 5i Gen 6 (2021) CPU Performance
The Intel Core i7-11800H being a powerful octa-core CPU is a great processor for both gaming and content creation. On CPU-Z, the laptop posted 614 points on the single thread and 5727.1 points on multi-thread performance. Similarly, on Geekbench 5, the laptop posted 1542 points on single-core and 8129 points on multi-core CPU performance.
Lastly, on Cinebench R23, which is again a CPU-centric benchmark, the Lenovo Legion 5i Gen 6 (2021) scored 1514 points on single-core and 9778 points on multi-core CPU tests. Overall, the performance of the Lenovo Legion 5i Gen 6 (2021) is similar to laptops that are based on the Intel Core i7-11800H.
Lenovo Legion 5i Gen 6 (2021) GPU Performance
The NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3050 laptop with 4GB GDDR6 video memory is currently the entry-level offering from the RTX series of GPU. On the Superposition benchmark, the laptop scored the following numbers. At 1080p medium graphics settings, the laptop posted an average FPS of 70.31, while the frame rate dipped to 51.67fps when the graphics quality was set to high.
Similarly, at 1080p extreme graphics settings 21.67fps, when we tried to run the benchmark at 4K resolution we got a warning that the VRAM limit has reached. When we ran the benchmark, we got an average FPS of 30.75, and the graphics were set to optimized quality.
On 3D Mark, the Lenovo Legion 5i Gen 6 (2021) scored 4961 points and confirms that the laptop can offer 65+ fps on Battlefield V at 1080p and 50+ fps at 1440p resolution.
Lenovo Legion 5i Gen 6 (2021) Gaming Performance
On Far Cry 6, we got an average FPS of 92 when the graphics quality was set to low. With the medium graphics settings, we got an FPS of 64. On GTA: V we got an average FPS of 115 with medium graphics settings. This means, if you want to play modern AAA games with high FPS, you might have to lower down the graphics quality on the Lenovo Legion 5i Gen 6 (2021) to low or medium.
We also tested the Shadow of the Tomb Raider, we got an average FPS of 81 when the ray-tracing quality was set to ultra and when the ray-tracing was turned off, we saw a huge jump in FPS, where the laptop offered an average FPS of 92.
These numbers clearly indicate that the Lenovo Legion 5i Gen 6 (2021) can easily handle most games at 1080p resolution. However, you might have to lower graphics quality to achieve higher FPS.
Verdict: Worth The Price
The Lenovo Legion 5i Gen 6 (2021) is definitely one of the best mid-range laptops, capable of handling most games at 1080p settings. In fact, the Lenovo Legion 5i Gen 6 (2021) is a CPU-centric gaming laptop, which also makes it an excellent machine for both gamers and content creators.
If you are looking for a laptop that costs around Rs. 1,10,000 and offers all the modern features, then the Lenovo Legion 5i Gen 6 (2021) is a good pick. Again, at this price, you can also consider laptops like the Asus TUF F15, which costs a bit more than the Lenovo Legion 5i Gen 6 (2021) and offers Intel Core i9-11900H and the NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3060 GPU with 6GB video memory.