Today, we have the brand new Lenovo Ideapad Flex 5 (14). Its a stylish little 2-in-1, which should be good for work, light gaming, and, of course, be used as a table. Or, at least that’s what Lenovo wants you to think. From what we see in the official specs sheet, we see only two display options, both of which are 1080p panels, but one of them is an IPS one, while the other is a TN.
We’re definitely going to investigate the prowess of the IPS panel (as we got that one). Before that, we have to tell you that the Ideapad Flex 5 (14) comes in two major iterations – an Intel one and an AMD one. Ultimately, the former utilizes Intel’s Ice Lake processors (the one we have), while the latter goes for the Ryzen 4000U processors, which are extremely potent. However, Lenovo is only offering options that lack multithreading.
So, let’s see how much of work has Lenovo done in making this laptop a must, or they have just flopped another potential strong notebook.
You can check the prices and configurations in our Specs System: https://laptopmedia.com/series/lenovo-ideapad-flex-5-14-intel/
Lenovo IdeaPad Flex 5 (14″ , Intel) - Specs
All Lenovo IdeaPad Flex 5 (14″ , Intel) configurationsSee all Lenovo Ideapad Flex 5 (14) review – the optional GeForce MX330 has its perks and drawbacks configurations
What’s in the box?
Apart from the laptop itself, inside the package, we found some paper manuals and a 65W power brick. Additionally, you might find the laptop with an optional Digital Pen inside.
Design and construction
So, this notebook comes at 17.9mm-20.4mm in profile and weighs 1.50 kg, which is decent for a 2-in-1 of this screen size. Also, there are two options when it comes to the material used for making the lid cover – plastic or aluminum. The base, however, is always going to be plastic, which is telling the story of cost-cutting. By the way, despite its matte rubbery finish, the base is pretty prone to fingerprints, which look quite nasty – you might want to wipe it from time to time.
Thankfully, this notebook is using pretty much the same hinge mechanisms as its larger counterpart, which means that you can open it easily with a single hand, and it stops right at the comfortable clamshell position, before going further down. This gives it quite a lot of resistance, which is good. Also, the display has a glass cover, which makes it well protected, and the Web camera above it has its own privacy shutter.
Now, let’s talk about the keyboard. It has a backlight (optional), and while its feedback is clicky, it remains quiet, making it particularly comfortable for library use. Slightly on the downside, we have the relatively short key travel and half-sized “Up” and “Down” arrow keys.
Looking further down, we see the touchpad, which is not great, as a portion of its surface doesn’t register input as good as the rest of the touchpad. However, we should praise Lenovo for putting a fingerprint reader.
Lastly, the bottom panel has two rather long ventilation grills, while the speakers are firing towards the user, meaning they are surrounding the keyboard.
On the left side, you’ll see the charging plug, an HDMI 1.4b connector, as well as a USB Type-C 3.2 (Gen. 1) port (with Power Delivery function), and an audio jack, while on the right, there are two USB Type-A 3.2 (Gen. 1) ports, an SD card reader and the Power button which sits flushed with the side of the notebook, and has almost no tactile feedback.
Disassembly, upgrade options and maintenance
In order to get to this notebook’s internals, you need to undo 9 Torx-head screws. After that, pry the bottom panel away with a plastic tool, and you should be able to see everything inside.
First, we have to mention that our unit has a dedicated GeForce MX330 inside, so we see the more capable cooling solution. It includes two heat pipes, which are shared between the CPU and the GPU, as well as a relatively big fan.
Unfortunately, the memory of this laptop is soldered to the motherboard. The maximum amount you can get is 16GB, and you won’t be able to increase that in the future. Thankfully, there is still the option to put a faster or larger SSD, thanks to the M.2 PCIe x4 drive slot.
In terms of battery, this laptop is equipped with a 52.5Wh pack.
Lenovo Ideapad Flex 5 (14) is equipped has a Full HD IPS screen, model number LG Display LP140WFA-SPMB (LEN40A9). Its diagonal is 14″ (35.56 cm), and the resolution – 1920 х 1080. Additionally, the screen ratio is 16:9, the pixel density – 157 ppi, their pitch – 0.161 x 0.161 mm. The screen can be considered Retina when viewed from at least 55 cm (from this distance, the average human eye can’t see the individual pixels).
Viewing angles are comfortable. We have provided images at 45 degrees to evaluate quality.
The maximum measured brightness is 250 nits (cd/m2) in the middle of the screen and 244 nits (cd/m2) average across the surface with a maximum deviation of 10%. The Correlated Color Temperature on a white screen and at maximum brightness is 6640K (average) – slightly colder than the 6500K optimum for sRGB.
In the illustration below you can see how the display performs from a uniformity perspective. The illustration below shows how matters are for operational brightness levels (approximately 140 nits) – in this particular case at 82% Brightness (White level = 142 cd/m2, Black level = 0.14 cd/m2).
Values of dE2000 over 4.0 should not occur, and this parameter is one of the first you should check if you intend to use the laptop for color-sensitive work (a maximum tolerance of 2.0 ). The contrast ratio is good – 1080:1.
To make sure we are on the same page, we would like to give you a little introduction to the sRGB color gamut and the Adobe RGB. To start, there’s the CIE 1976 Uniform Chromaticity Diagram that represents the visible specter of colors by the human eye, giving you a better perception of the color gamut coverage and the color accuracy.
Inside the black triangle, you will see the standard color gamut (sRGB) that is being used by millions of people in HDTV and on the web. As for the Adobe RGB, this is used in professional cameras, monitors, etc for printing. Basically, colors inside the black triangle are used by everyone and this is the essential part of the color quality and color accuracy of a mainstream notebook.
Still, we’ve included other color spaces like the famous DCI-P3 standard used by movie studios, as well as the digital UHD Rec.2020 standard. Rec.2020, however, is still a thing of the future and it’s difficult for today’s displays to cover that well. We’ve also included the so-called Michael Pointer gamut, or Pointer’s gamut, which represents the colors that naturally occur around us every day.
The yellow dotted line shows Lenovo Ideapad Flex 5 (14)’s color gamut coverage.
Its display covers just 50% of the sRGB/ITU-R BT.709 (web/HDTV standard) in CIE1976.
Our “Design and Gaming” profile delivers optimal color temperature (6500K) at 140 cd/m2 luminance and sRGB gamma mode.
We tested the accuracy of the display with 24 commonly used colors like light and dark human skin, blue sky, green grass, orange, etc. You can check out the results at factory condition and also, with the “Design and Gaming” profile.
Below you can compare the scores of Lenovo Ideapad Flex 5 (14) with the default settings (left), and with the “Gaming and Web design” profile (right).
The next figure shows how well the display is able to reproduce really dark parts of an image, which is essential when watching movies or playing games in low ambient light.
The left side of the image represents the display with stock settings, while the right one is with the “Gaming and Web Design” profile activated. On the horizontal axis, you will find the grayscale, and on the vertical axis – the luminance of the display. On the two graphs below you can easily check for yourself how your display handles the darkest nuances but keep in mind that this also depends on the settings of your current display, the calibration, the viewing angle, and the surrounding light conditions.
Response time (Gaming capabilities)
We test the reaction time of the pixels with the usual “black-to-white” and “white-to-black” method from 10% to 90% and vice versa.
We recorded Fall Time + Rise Time = 20 ms
Health impact – PWM / Blue Light
PWM (Screen flickering)
Pulse-width modulation (PWM) is an easy way to control monitor brightness. When you lower the brightness, the light intensity of the backlight is not lowered, but instead turned off and on by the electronics with a frequency indistinguishable to the human eye. In these light impulses, the light/no-light time ratio varies, while brightness remains unchanged, which is harmful to your eyes. You can read more about that in our dedicated article on PWM.
Lenovo Ideapad Flex 5 (14)’s display doesn’t rely on PWM to adjust its brightness levels. This makes it comfortable for use during extended work periods, without presenting any harm to your eyes in this aspect.
Blue light emissions
Installing our Health-Guard profile not only eliminates PWM but also reduces the harmful Blue Light emissions while keeping the colors of the screen perceptually accurate. If you’re not familiar with the Blue light, the TL;DR version is – emissions that negatively affect your eyes, skin, and your whole body. You can find more information about that in our dedicated article on Blue Light.
Lenovo Ideapad Flex 5 (14)’s touchscreen IPS panel has a Full HD resolution, good contrast ratio, comfortable viewing angles, and somewhat adequate default settings. Also, its backlight doesn’t flicker. However, similarly to its 15-inch brother, it covers only 50% of the sRGB color gamut, its maximum brightness is relatively low (won’t be very comfortable for outdoor use due to the reflective panel), and its color accuracy is pretty low. This makes it inappropriate for color-related work, sadly.
Buy our profiles
Since our profiles are tailored for each individual display model, this article and its respective profile package are meant for Lenovo Ideapad Flex 5 (14) configurations with 14.0″ LG Display LP140WFA-SPMB (LEN40A9) (FHD, 1920 × 1080) IPS panel.
*Should you have problems with downloading the purchased file, try using a different browser to open the link you’ll receive via e-mail. If the download target is a .php file instead of an archive, change the file extension to .zip or contact us at [email protected]
Read more about the profiles HERE.
In addition to receiving efficient and health-friendly profiles, by buying LaptopMedia's products you also support the development of our labs, where we test devices in order to produce the most objective reviews possible.
Office Work should be used mostly by users who spend most of the time looking at pieces of text, tables or just surfing. This profile aims to deliver better distinctness and clarity by keeping a flat gamma curve (2.20), native color temperature and perceptually accurate colors.
Design and Gaming
This profile is aimed at designers who work with colors professionally, and for games and movies as well. Design and Gaming takes display panels to their limits, making them as accurate as possible in the sRGB IEC61966-2-1 standard for Web and HDTV, at white point D65.
Lenovo Ideapad Flex 5 (14)’s speakers produce a sound with relatively good quality. Its low tones have some deviations, while the mids and the highs are clear.
All of the drivers and utilities for this notebook can be downloaded from here: https://pcsupport.lenovo.com/us/en/products/laptops-and-netbooks/flex-series/flex-5-14iil05/downloads/driver-list
Now, we conduct the battery tests with Windows Better performance setting turned on, screen brightness adjusted to 120 nits, and all other programs turned off except for the one we are testing the notebook with.
In order to simulate real-life conditions, we used our own script for automatic web browsing through over 70 websites.
For every test like this, we use the same video in HD.
We use F1 2017’s built-in benchmark on loop in order to simulate real-life gaming.
This notebook’s Intel version comes with the Core i3-1005G1, Core i5-1035G1, or the Core i7-1065G7.
Results are from the Cinebench 15 CPU test (the higher the score, the better)
Results are from the Fritz chess benchmark (the higher the score, the better)
Results are from our Photoshop benchmark test (the lower the score, the better)
As far as the graphics go, you can go for the dedicated NVIDIA GeForce MX330 (2GB of GDDR5), or settle for the integrated UHD Graphics, or Iris Plus Graphics, depending on the processor.
Results are from the 3DMark: Fire Strike (Graphics) benchmark (higher the score, the better)
Results are from the Unigine Heaven 3.0 benchmark (higher the score, the better)
Results are from the Unigine Heaven 4.0 benchmark (higher the score, the better)
Results are from the Unigine Superposition benchmark (higher the score, the better)
|CS:GO||HD 1080p, Low (Check settings)||HD 1080p, Medium (Check settings)||HD 1080p, MAX (Check settings)|
|NVIDIA GeForce MX330||106 fps||88 fps||76 fps|
|DOTA 2||HD 1080p, Low (Check settings)||HD 1080p, Normal (Check settings)||HD 1080p, High (Check settings)|
|NVIDIA GeForce MX330||112 fps||77 fps||59 fps|
Temperatures and comfort
Max CPU load
In this test we use 100% on the CPU cores, monitoring their frequencies and chip temperature. The first column shows a computer’s reaction to a short load (2-10 seconds), the second column simulates a serious task (between 15 and 30 seconds), and the third column is a good indicator of how good the laptop is for long loads such as video rendering.
Average core frequency (base frequency + X); CPU temp.
|Intel Core i5-1035G1 (15W TDP)||0:02 – 0:10 sec||0:15 – 0:30 sec||10:00 – 15:00 min|
|Lenovo Ideapad Flex 5 (14)||2.38 GHz (B+138%) @ 94°C||2.23 GHz (B+123%) @ 96°C||1.74 GHz (B+74%) @ 85°C|
|ASUS ZenBook 13 UX325||2.35 GHz (B+135%) @ 97°C||1.98 GHz (B+98%) @ 97°C||1.37 GHz (B+37%) @ 68°C|
|Lenovo Ideapad Flex 5 (15)||2.59 GHz (B+159%) @ 95°C||2.15 GHz (B+115%) @ 95°C||1.66 GHz (B+66%) @ 81°C|
|Lenovo Ideapad 5 (15)||2.46 GHz (B+146%) @ 84°C||1.95 GHz (B+95%) @ 76°C||2.06 GHz (B+106%) @ 74°C|
|HP Pavilion 14 (14-ce3000)||2.91 GHz (B+191%) @ 92°C||1.82 GHz (B+82%) @ 73°C||1.49 GHz (B+49%) @ 65°C|
|Dell Vostro 15 3591||2.09 GHz (B+109%) @ 75°C||2.09 GHz (B+109%) @ 84°C||1.77 GHz (B+77%) @ 85°C|
|Acer Aspire 5 (A515-55)||1.98 GHz (B+98%) @ 79°C||1.68 GHz (B+68%) @ 79°C||1.52 GHz (B+52%) @ 79°C|
|Acer Swift 5 Pro (SF514-54GT)||2.88 GHz (B+188%) @ 80°C||1.62 GHz (B+62%) @ 64°C||1.65 GHz (B+65%) @ 67°C|
|HP 340S G7||2.71 GHz (B+171%) @ 92°C||2.42 GHz (B+142%) @ 93°C||1.77 GHz (B+77%) @ 72°C|
|Dell Inspiron 5593||2.53 GHz (B+153%) @ 99°C||2.14 GHz (B+114%) @ 94°C||1.88 GHz (B+88%) @ 87°C|
Well, the laptop is kind of struggling with this processor. We performed this test with the “Extreme performance” setting on the Lenovo Vantage software, and we are not particularly happy with the results, especially the frequencies it works at. Keep in mind that the “Intelligent cooling” profile will use a lower power limit, which will result in significantly lower frequencies and slightly lower temperatures and noise.
|NVIDIA GeForce MX330||GPU frequency/ Core temp (after 2 min)||GPU frequency/ Core temp (after 30 min)||GPU frequency/ Core temp (cooling pad)|
|Lenovo Ideapad Flex 5 (14)||1531 MHz @ 91°C||1405 MHz @ 93°C||1709 MHz @ 72°C|
Interestingly, adding a cooling pad to the mixture greatly helps bring the temperatures to a reasonable level. Plus, it boosts the frequency of the GeForce MX330 by more than 300 MHz, which, needless to say, is a huge difference.
Comfort during full load
Especially during long heavy loads like gaming, the laptop becomes extremely hot on its surface – both on the base and the bottom panel. Also, we feel that the fan is suffocating when the laptop is used in its normal clamshell position.
So, the Intel version of this laptop is having a lot of struggles. The most prominent one comes from the cooling solution – especially when you have the GeForce MX330 onboard. During gaming (and with the “Extreme performance” profile applied) we saw the temperatures to not only creep up but maintain at 93C on the GPU and 97C on the processor. And if you choose the more forgiving “Intelligent cooling” profile, you end up losing performance. By the way, introducing a cooling pad drastically improves the thermals of the notebooks, as it appears that the design of the device is not optimized for airflow. So, at the end of the day, it might just be a better choice to pick the Intel Core i7-1065G7 only with its integrated graphics. Or just go for the AMD options, as they will provide a lot more headroom for productivity.
Additionally, the Ideapad Flex 5 has its memory soldered to the motherboard, which eliminates the option to upgrade it post-purchase. On the other side, you can upgrade your storage and enjoy the use of SD cards – something photographers will certainly like.
Lenovo Ideapad Flex 5 (14)’s touchscreen IPS panel (LP140WFA-SPMB) has a Full HD resolution, good contrast ratio, comfortable viewing angles, and somewhat adequate default settings. Also, its backlight doesn’t flicker. However, similarly to its 15-inch brother, it covers only 50% of the sRGB color gamut, its maximum brightness is relatively low (won’t be very comfortable for outdoor use due to the reflective panel), and its color accuracy is pretty low. This makes it inappropriate for color-related work – something that photographers won’t enjoy, respectively.
Actually, the strongest argument for getting this device is its battery life. Our unit was able to last for 8 hours and 20 minutes of Web browsing and an hour more of video playback. Ultimately, this makes it an average device for the average Joe – no professional work allowed.
- Versatile and stable hinges
- Good battery life
- SD card slot and Wi-Fi 6 support
- Doesn’t use aggressive PWM (LP140WFA-SPMB)
- Optional fingerprint reader
- No RAM upgradability post-purchase
- Extremely hot under load (Intel + NVIDIA combo)
- Covers only half of the colors in the sRGB gamut (LP140WFA-SPMB)
You can check the prices and configurations in our Specs System: https://laptopmedia.com/series/lenovo-ideapad-flex-5-14-intel/