Lenovo IdeaPad 3: An Affordable yet Powerful Laptop

Lenovo IdeaPad 3: An Affordable yet Powerful Laptop

Written by Mark Williams, In Laptop, Published On
March 9, 2024

In Short:

  • Refined performance: Powered by 12th-gen Intel Core i5 processors and 8GB RAM, it delivers smooth and snappy performance for everyday tasks like documents, browsing, video meets, etc. The integrated Intel Iris Xe graphics allow some light gaming as well.
  • Premium aesthetic: Despite the budget pricing, the IdeaPad 3 looks rather premium thanks to the stylish metallic finish on the lid and its 0.39-inch thin profile at just 1.63kg. The chassis feels sturdy, and the backlit keyboard is comfortable to use.
  • Adequate features: You get a bright 15.6-inch 1080p display, dual speakers with Dolby Audio, Wi-Fi 6 for wireless connectivity, and all essential ports like USB-C, USB-A, HDMI, headphone jack, and microSD card reader. The 45Wh battery lasts around 5-6 hours on a single full charge.
  • Value for money: Starting at just $530 in the US and Rs. 58,000 in India, the Lenovo IdeaPad 3 2022 (Intel) offers excellent value by providing great performance hardware, a premium design, and a decent feature set at an affordable price point. For budget home and office needs, it hits the sweet spot.

The Lenovo IdeaPad 3 2022 (Intel) is the latest budget laptop offering from Lenovo featuring 12th Gen Intel processors. In this article, we will take a closer look at its key specifications, performance, design, display quality, audio capabilities, software, connectivity, battery life, pricing, and more to help you decide if it’s the right choice for you. Lenovo’s IdeaPad series has always been popular for delivering reliable performance at an affordable price point. The latest IdeaPad 3 2022 (Intel) carries on the same legacy with its compact yet premium design and 12th Gen Intel processing power. Though it makes some compromises to achieve attractive pricing, it has enough juice for day-to-day home and office use.

Key Specifications

Lenovo IdeaPad 3

Category Specification
Processor Intel Core i5-1235U (12th Gen)
Processor Cores/Threads 10 cores, 12 threads
Processor Clock Speed Up to 4.4GHz
RAM 8GB DDR4 (Upgradable)
Storage 256GB PCIe NVMe M.2 SSD (User replaceable)
Graphics Intel Iris Xe
Display 15.6′′ TN LCD, 1920 x 1080 Resolution
Display Features Anti-glare layer, 45% NTSC color gamut, 250 nits
Audio Dual 1.5W bottom-firing speakers, Dolby Audio
Operating System Windows 11 Home edition
Connectivity Ports (Left) 1x USB 2.0 Type-A, 1x USB 3.2 Gen 1 Type-A, 1x HDMI 1.4b, 1x headphone jack
Connectivity Ports (Right) 1x USB 3.2 Gen 1 Type-C, 1x MicroSD card reader, Charging port
Battery 45Wh, Lenovo Rapid Charge (80% in 1 hour)
Battery Life Around 5-6 hours
Charger 65W Charger

What’s in the Box?

Here is what you get inside the standard retail box of the Lenovo IdeaPad 3:

  • Lenovo IdeaPad 3 laptop
  • 65W power adapter
  • Manuals and documentation

Performance and Processing Power

The Lenovo IdeaPad 3 2022 (Intel) delivers reliable performance powered by a 12th-generation Intel Core i5-1235U processor. This 10-core CPU clock speeds up to 4.4GHz to handle daily productivity work smoothly. It is paired with 8GB of DDR4 RAM that allows for efficient multitasking. The user-upgradable RAM gives you the flexibility to add more memory later on. For storage needs, it has a speedy 256GB M.2 NVMe SSD. There is also an empty 2.5-inch drive bay to add extra storage when needed. Graphics are managed by Intel Iris Xe, which lets you play some older games in low settings. There are also three performance modes to optimize the laptop as per your current workload. Overall, it has enough juice for office work, content streaming, video meets, etc.

Design and Build Quality

Lenovo IdeaPad 3

The IdeaPad 3 2022 features an all-plastic construction with dimensions of 359.2 x 236.5 x 19.9 mm and weight of 1.63 kg. It feels sturdy thanks to the metallic finishing on the chassis and smooth, rounded corners. You can lay the screen completely flat owing to the 180-degree durable hinges. The keyboard exhibits no flex and comes with well-spaced keys for a comfortable typing experience. There is a fingerprint scanner embedded into the power button for quick biometric logins.

Display Technology and Visual Experience

This laptop comes with a 15.6-inch TN LCD panel featuring a Full HD 1920 x 1080 resolution. It manages 45% of the NTSC color gamut and a peak brightness of 250 nits. You get decent color reproduction, contrast levels, and viewing angles for everyday usage. An anti-glare coating ensures minimal reflections when working near light sources. It works well for browsing documents, movies, and more.

Audio and Entertainment Capabilities

The IdeaPad 3 2022 houses a competent stereo speaker system aided by Dolby Audio tuning. The dual 1.5W speakers deliver distortion-free sound with good clarity and volume levels. You also get a universal headphone jack for private listening sessions. The entertainment experience is further enhanced by the anti-glare FHD screen. The HD webcam works all right for casual meets.

User-Friendly Interface and Operating System

Lenovo IdeaPad 3

This Lenovo laptop ships with the Windows 11 OS, which offers a smooth and refined user experience. The UI includes animated visual effects, platform-wide dark mode, and several customization options. You get Microsoft’s productivity suite pre-installed alongside useful Lenovo software. It also enables biometric logins, quick wake from sleep, and effortless gesture navigation.

Connectivity Options and Ports

Physical ports in the IdeaPad 3 2022 include 2x USB-A, 1x USB-C, HDMI, a MicroSD slot, a headphone jack, and the charging input. The USB-C port supports 5Gbps data transfer speeds, display output, and charging. Wireless connectivity is covered by the latest Wi-Fi 6 and Bluetooth 5.1. So, you get both current and legacy ports for versatility, along with up-to-date wireless capabilities.

Battery Life and Efficiency

Its 45Wh battery delivers around 5 to 6 hours of usage time on a full charge. To quickly refuel the laptop, Lenovo Rapid Charge technology provides 80% capacity within just 60 minutes of plugging in. There is also a battery optimization mode that reduces performance to extend endurance when needed. The fast charger can completely top up the laptop in under 2 hours.

Pricing and Value Proposition

Lenovo IdeaPad 3

The Ideapad 3 2022 (Intel) is attractively priced at NPR 87,000 in Nepal, INR 58,000 in India, and $530 in the US. Considering the aluminum finish, capable performance hardware, and decent features, it gives you plenty of value. Students and budget buyers get a well-rounded laptop that can handle everyday workloads easily at this price point. It outshines similarly priced competitor models on both specs and real-world usage feedback.

Note: The laptop can withstand small blows, and the smooth hinge allows you to lay the screen flat. There is no keyboard flex, and the “flip to open” lid is handy, like on a MacBook. You can conveniently log in using the fingerprint reader embedded in the power button.

Pros and Cons of IdeaPad 3

Pros Cons
Premium and compact design The all-plastic build may lack a high-end feel
Capable 12th gen performance Not suitable for high-end gaming
Good battery endurance TN LCD display may have limited viewing angles
Rapid and convenient charging No dedicated GPU for graphics-intensive tasks
Cost-effective pricing
User-friendly Windows 11 interface
Lenovo Rapid Charge feature
Upgradable RAM and storage

Should I Buy It?

The IdeaPad 3 2022 makes for a practical purchase if you seek good productivity on a budget. Though the display and webcam could be better, they nail the basics like design, keyboard, battery life, and performance. Given its affordable pricing, the laptop delivers great value by cutting the right corners. For everyday office/school work, it is easily one of the top recommendations near the $500 price segment.


Does it feature backlit keys?

No, this particular variant lacks keyboard backlighting, which is a slight letdown considering its price. Backlit models are available in select regions like the US.

Can I upgrade the storage and RAM?

Yes, you can add more RAM via the empty SODIMM slot. And the M.2 SSD is user-replaceable as well. So upgrading is not an issue.

How is its gaming performance?

With Intel Iris Xe graphics, light gaming at low settings is possible. But high-end gaming is out of its capabilities. Still, it manages casual games fairly well.

Is the display bright enough for outdoor use?

No, with a brightness level of 250 nits, it is best suited for indoor usage only. Using it in direct sunlight will be difficult.

Does it include a stylus or touchscreen?

No, it is a traditional clamshell laptop with neither stylus support nor touch input. For touchscreen models, consider the IdeaPad Flex series from Lenovo.

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