December 12, 2011
- Budget price
- Slim, attractive chassis
- Good performance
- Limited expansion space
- No USB 3.0
The Lenovo IdeaCentre H330 is a budget machine that actually outperforms most other similar desktops in its category. It has a sub-$600 price and includes an Intel Core i3 CPU, 4GB of RAM and a 1.5TB hard drive. It also has a slim design, but with that slimness comes less room for future expansion.
The Lenovo IdeaCentre H330 comes in a slim tower that can either stand upright or lay horizontally. The visual design is simple and that lends to its ability to blend into home or small business settings with ease. In total, it measures 3.9 x 11.5 x 15.7-inch (whd), which means that there is little room for future expansion and/or upgrades. The only expansion slot available is one PCIe (x1) slot, so this is a computer that you'll definitely want to buy pre-configured to your future needs.
In terms of connectivity options, you'll find six USB 2.0 ports (4 rear; 2 front), HDMI-out, VGA-out, the usual audio ports, gigabit Ethernet and an 8-in-1 memory card reader. We were disappointed that Lenovo decided not to make at least one of those USB ports 3.0-supported. It's really difficult to completely recommend a computer when it lacks technology that is rapidly becoming standard. There is also a DVD+/-RW optical drive and integrated 802.11b/g/n Wi-Fi too.
The internal specifications of the Lenovo IdeaCentre H330 include a dual-core Intel Core i3-2100 CPU (3.1GHz), 4GB of RAM, a 1.5TB 7200RPM hard drive and integrated Intel HD 2000 graphics. It also comes with the 64-bit edition of Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium. The massive hard drive capacity and 7200RPM speed help give this desktop PC a performance boost that it might have lacked if it had a slower 5400RPM drive. The Intel i3 CPU isn't the best out there, but it performed quite well in our tests.
In benchmark tests, the Lenovo H330 has top of its class performance, even with the lesser i3 CPU, but it does have a higher clock speed than some i5 CPUs. Upgrading the RAM to 8GB (the maximum supported) will also give the computer a performance boost too. We had no issues playing streaming HD video and multitasking, so most users will appreciate this desktop's performance.
Graphics performance, on the other hand, wasn't as good as we expected, though we didn't expect much with the Intel integrated graphics. Don't expect to play any of today's 3D games with any playable results, except if you turn the graphics settings way down to their minimum. Then again, this computer isn't really designed for 3D gaming.
Lenovo includes a standard wired keyboard and mouse combo. The keyboard connects via PS/2 and the mouse is USB. The keyboard has flat, nicely-spaced keys that provided a comfortable typing experience. The mouse, which features an orange scroll wheel, is lightweight and has optical tracking. Other than that, it's your run-of-the-mill USB mouse.