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Budget PCs Reviews
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Lenovo ThinkCentre A70z review

£553.73 inc VAT

Manufacturer: Lenovo

Our Rating: We rate this 3.5 out of 5

The Lenovo ThinkCentre A70z is an all-in-one desktop PC that's designed to save space yet still provide good performance when running office applications.

The Lenovo ThinkCentre A70z is an all-in-one desktop PC that's designed to save space yet still provide good performance when running office applications.

Lenovo ThinkCentre A70z: Specs and speed

The PC portion of the Lenovo ThinkCentre A70z resides within the monitor panel and it gives the unit an overall thickness of almost 7cm. On the inside, it has an Intel Pentium Dual-Core E7500 CPU, which runs at 2.93GHz. Combined with 2GB of DDR2 SDRAM and a 7200rpm, 320GB Serial ATA drive, the ThinkCentre A70z is pretty quick. In our WorldBench 6 benchmark suite the PC recorded fast times in all the individual applications. In Adobe Photoshop, it took 415sec to complete a workload, which is only 16sec slower than what a pre-production A70z running a 2.8GHz Core 2 Duo and 4GB of DDR3 RAM recorded. In the media encoding test it was 18sec slower, while in the office productivity test it was 7sec slower.

This translates into fast performance when running typical office applications, as well image editing, video editing and file compression programs. Multitasking will also be a breeze. In the Blender 3D rendering and iTunes MP3 encoding tests, the dual-core CPU's speed was plainly evident; it recorded a time of 1min 09sec in the Blender test and 1min 06sec in the iTunes test. To put it in perspective, these times are only about 18sec slower than what a Intel Core i5-661 based PC can accomplish with two cores plus Hyper-Threading.

Graphics is the one area in which the Lenovo ThinkCentre A70z isn't strong. It uses an integrated Intel G41 graphics chip, which is fine for running office applications, but you won't want to use it for processing real-time 3D graphics (such as games). It achieved a relatively low score of 828 in 3DMark06 and it's not as fast as what an all-in-one based on NVIDIA's ION platform can achieve, for example. However, it's fast enough for running productivity applications and editing high resolution images.

Lenovo ThinkCentre A70z: Ports and slots

Just below the screen sit a couple of speakers that are adequate for watching videos, and you can also plug in a pair of headphones; there is a port on the right side of the unit. Above the screen is a built-in webcam, which can be used for Skype, and there is a built-in microphone. You can also plug in an external microphone.

USB 2.0 ports are abundant - you get four at the rear and three on the right side - and there is also a Gigabit Ethernet port and a serial port. You don't get a video output port, which means you can't run a dual-monitor setup. The Lenovo ThinkCentre A70z also lacks an SD card slot, which is an unfortunate oversight for many business and home users who work with digital images. It also lacks an ExpressCard slot for adding expansion cards. External Serial ATA (eSATA) is also missing, which means that the fastest external storage you can use will be USB 2.0-based. If you're in a small office or a home user and want to use wireless networking, you'll have to add a USB-based Wi-Fi dongle.

NEXT: our expert verdict >>

Lenovo ThinkCentre A70z Expert Verdict »
Intel Core 2 Duo (E7500) 2.93GHz 3MB (L2 Cache)
Integrated Network
Integrated Sound
2GB PC2­6400 800MHz DDR2 SDRAM
320GB 7200RPM SATA Hard Drive
19in Active Matrix TFT LCD 1440x900 Pixels, 1,000:1 (Static), 300cd/m2
DVD±RW drive
Preferred Pro USB Keyboard
USB Optical Mouse
6x USB 2.0, RJ­45, 3.5mm Headphone Port, Microphone In
High Definition Audio sound card
Ethernet 10/100/1000Mbps Integrated
Intel Graphics Media Accelerator X4500 DVMT (Dynamic Video Memory Technology)
Microsoft Windows 7 Professional
115 to 230VAC/50 to 60Hz
472x73x356mm
8kg
  • Overall: We give this item 7 of 10 overall

The Lenovo ThinkCentre A70z is a little underdone considering it doesn't have an SD card slot or built-in wireless networking, but it's nevertheless a zippy machine on which you can comfortably run office applications and more. It will cope with image editing, file compression and even video tasks, and its screen resolution of 1440x900 is fine for multitasking. If you want a neat all-in-one solution that won't cost you a lot of money, then the A70z it's well worth considering.

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