Lenovo ThinkPad L14 (AMD) Review

We’ve looked in depth at the ThinkPad L14 (AMD) with Ryzen 7 through the video. The notes below are excerpts from the video. The L series tends to be ThinkPad’s budget focused portable line, which is robust and reliable. It is positioned between the more affordable E series, and the T14, which happens to often be the standard business issue model.



This ThinkPad L series has a ABS plastic based chassis, in contrast to the more premium build on the T14 and T14s. The model’s lid does appear to scratch reasonably easily, so a decent laptop bag / sleeve, would certainly help to keep it in a tip-top shape. The lid remains reasonably sturdy, and the centre of the keypad is very robust (does not appear to exhibit any obvious flex).
The L14 will be heavier, at around 1.6kg, this machine will feel noticeably heavier than the lighter ThinkPads (e.g. T14s / X1 Carbon). However, the difference to the T14 should be reasonably minimal.


We’ve tested the Ryzen 7 version of the L14 (AMD), which offers a considerable amount of power, especially in comparison to the last generation model (L490) in the multithreaded workload. The more price conscious buyers may want to review the Ryzen 5 option (Ryzen 3 availability is very low at the launch), with 6-Cores, it may prove to be a cost efficient option.
The Ryzen 7 is certainly more speedy in the multi-tasking workload, the question may be whether the price will be too close to the ThinkPad T14, once the upgrades are added.
As a business laptop, the expectation on the graphics card is usually minimal. That said, the Ryzen 7 with its Vega integrated graphics, is more performant than the last generation. It’s worthwhile to select a dual-channel RAM spec, as the increased bandwidth will help the graphics performance noticeably (in some scenarios).


The base cover is easily removable. The dual RAM slots are available for upgrade, along with the 1x M.2 slot.
The dual RAM slot is great from the upgradeability perspective (the Ryzen version of the T14 only has 1x slot, in addition to the onboard; whereas the ThinkPad X13 and the T14s do not have user upgradeable RAM (has to be configured at the purchasing point).


The L series typically have a narrower range of display choices. This is the same case with the ThinkPad L14 G1 (AMD). The FHD IPS display will be more than sufficient for some indoor use, nonetheless. It would certainly be nice to have the option - for a 400nits low-power display, however, that more premium option is currently not available on the ThinkPad L14 G1 (AMD).


The speakers on the L14 is consistent with the expectation from a entry/mid range business laptop: functional, though lacks clarity & bass. For the teleconferencing, it should be sufficient. Additionally, the Dolby Audio software will enable an improved experience, when it has been enabled. A decent pair of headphones, or external speakers, might come in handy.


The L series tends to come with a 12-month standard depot warranty (could be upgraded by the customer within the duration). This will be shorter than the typical 2-3 years option on the more premium T series. Whilst this enables a lower entry pricing, the Think warranty is generally a great to have (for peace of mind, if/when needed), if the budget allows.


The battery on the L14 is smaller than its T14 and T14s siblings (we’ve added a medium workload battery test, in the video). The charging process is reasonably fast, nonetheless - through a standard USB-C port. Whilst you no longer will have a hot-swappable battery, the portable USB-C external batteries may prove to be an elegant alternative.
The single core and lighter workload performance should be reasonably similar to the Intel Powered models. The Intel models may have the advantage, in terms of the battery life - under the lighter workloads. Under heavier workload, the battery life should be reasonably comparable / marginally better than Intel model (battery life will significantly vary, depending on the workload).
Other notes:

If you’re looking at a higher end L14 spec - it might be useful to consider, if you might find a T14 unit to be an affordable alternative. The latter will benefit from a more simple spec. The most obvious drawback in the Ryzen 4000 series powered ThinkPad laptops, would be the absence of the Thunderbolt 3 port (for some users, this will mean that you won’t be able to use an external GPU, nor the more complex docking setup); for some users, this might not be as much of a challenge.

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