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Lenovo IdeaCentre H320-40411DU

  • Category: Desktop Computers
Last Updated
March 7, 2011

Editor's Rating
3.5 Out of 5

Pros
  • Small, compact design
  • HDMI-out
  • Decent multimedia features
  • Strong performance

Cons
  • Integrated graphics
  • No digital audio out
  • No eSATA or USB 3.0

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Review

The Lenovo IdeaCentre H320 40411DU, while having an unusually long name, does have a strong set of entertainment and performance features, including an Intel Core i3 CPU, 4GB of RAM and a 1TB hard drive for storing all the media you want. This allows you to use this computer in a home entertainment setting because of its broad range of features without spending a whole lot.

The design of the Lenovo IdeaCentre H320 40411DU (Lenovo H320 from now on for short) is a slim-tower PC with a glossy black chassis that measures only 3.9 x 15.7 x 11.5-inches (wdh) and weighs just over 20-pounds. This makes this computer easily able to be tucked under a desk or in the corner of a home theater system working its magic out of sight. The design is rather bland other than the masses of stickers that Lenovo places on the exterior.

On the front panel, you'll find an 8-in-1 card reader as well as two USB 2.0 ports and two audio jacks (headphone & microphone). The rear of the Lenovo H320 contains 4 USB 2.0 ports, 1 keyboard & mouse port, VGA-out, HDMI-out, gigabit Ethernet and 5.1-analog audio ports. Media enthusiasts will see the lack of digital audio support or 7.1 surround sound, which hurts this PC a little bit. Also noticeably missing is either eSATA or FireWire ports, but at this mid-price range that's usually the case.

Inside the Lenovo H320, you'll find an available 1x PCIe expansion slot for adding anything that you might want to add. The internal specifications include a dual-core Intel Core i3-550 CPU (3.20GHz), 4GB of DDR3 SDRAM (upgradable to 8GB), a 1TB 7200RPM hard drive, a dual-layer DVD+/-RW optical drive and integrated 802.11b/g/n wireless. The graphics system is an integrated Intel GMA HD processor, so you might want to take advantage of the PCIe x16 slot to add a half-height video card if you really want to give this PC a multimedia boost. The operating system of Lenovo's choice on this PC is Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium (64-bit).

While we really liked the see the 1TB hard drive with 7200RPM speed and 4GB of RAM, the Intel i3 CPU and video card do hold back this system a little. Lenovo does offer a higher model, the H320-40411FU, for about an extra $250-300 and this model gives you an Intel Core i5, 6GB of RAM, a Blu-ray optical drive and a discrete Nvidia graphics card. If you have the extra model, you might want to give this alternative a look, but the 40411DU does a great job at what it's designed to do.

In testing, the performance of the Lenovo H320 was very admirable, especially when playing HD movies and streaming video from the Internet. Expect it to perform with lightning speed for the average productivity tasks, but also it does good with some more processor-intensive tasks. Don't expect it to be anything special for 3D gaming as the integrated graphics system isn't strong enough by any means.


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