Desktops are dead? Lenovo says no as it shoves new gaming PCs into the spotlight

Lenovo Legion

Despite all the so-called experts and naysayers, the desktop PC is not dead. In fact, it’s still thriving and Lenovo drives that point home with its new Legion-branded desktops for PC gamers. With a starting price of $900, the new Lenovo Legion PCs pack seventh-generation Intel Core processors, Nvidia GeForce or AMD Radeon graphics, and up to 64GB of overclockable Corsair Vengeance LPX DDR4 system memory at 2,800MHz.

As you will see, all three are fine-tuned for the Oculus Rift headset although you should not have any problems using the HTC Vive either. There are plenty of ports to support both and the lower graphics card options should provide the 90 frames per second you need for barf-free virtual experiences. Unfortunately, Lenovo’s new desktops only include AMD’s Radeon RX 500 Series cards and not its two new Radeon RX Vega 64 and Vega 56 cards that just hit the market.

Lenovo Legion Y920

According to Lenovo, the Legion Y920 model targets the enthusiast gaming crowd with components like the GeForce GTX 1080, Intel’s Core i7-7700K processor, Dolby Atmos audio, speedy PCI Express-based solid-state drive storage, and overclockable memory. The Legion Y920 model is the only desktop of the three that provides options for Windows 10 Pro and Windows 10 Home.

For cooling, this model includes a single exhaust fan on the back. The power supply has an exhaust fan on the back too along with a filtered intake vent on the bottom of the machine. There are two intake fans under a filter behind the front panel and an intake fan under the top’s hood. This is the only model with a clear window and a vent on the left side and the only one with Thunderbolt 3 connectivity.

Product Number: Y920-34IKZ
Processor: Intel Core i7-7700K (4-core)
Intel Core i5-7600K (4-core)
Graphics: GeForce GTX 1080
GeForce GTX 1070
GeForce GTX 1060
Radeon RX 580
Memory: Up to 64GB DDR4
Optional 16GB Intel Optane
Storage 1: Up to 2x 512GB PCIe SSD
Storage 2: Up to 1x 4TB SATA HDD
Connectivity: Wireless AC (Up to 867Mbps)
Ports: 1x Thunderbolt 3
2x HDMI
1x USB 3.1 Gen2 Type-C
8x USB 3.1 Gen1 Type-A
2x USB 2.0
1x Headset Combo Audio Jack
1x Gigabit Ethernet
1x PS/2
6x Audio Ports w/ S/PDIF
Audio: Dolby Atmos
Dimensions (inches): 16.92 (D) x 16.45 (H) x 7.48 (L)
Weight: 23.14 pounds
Operating System: Windows 10 Pro
Windows 10 Home
VR Compatibility: Oculus Rift (Certified)
Hero Features: Windows Mixed Reality
Case Color: Onyx Black
Starting Price: $2,000
Availability: October 2017

Lenovo Legion Y720

This model is not quite as “elite” as the Y920, targeting the mainstream PC gamer with up to a GeForce GTX 1070 card, and no Thunderbolt 3 port. Its storage capacity is lower too, removing an SSD and shoving the current SSD over to the slower SATA connection. The hard drive has a lower capacity too, but the Y720 still retains the option for installing a 16GB Intel Optane “cache stick” to speed up the hard drive’s performance.

On the cooling front, this model has an exhaust fan on the back. The power supply has an exhaust fan too, and an intake vent on the bottom of the PC. There are two intake fans under a filter behind the front cover and one intake fan under the top’s hood. A vent resides on the left side but with no window to see all the pretty components inside.

Product Number: Y720-34IKH
Processor: Intel Core i7-7700 (4-core)
Intel Core i5-7400 (4-core)
Graphics: GeForce GTX 1070
GeForce GTX 1060
GeForce GTX 1050Ti
Radeon RX 570
Memory: Up to 64GB DDR4
Optional 16GB Intel Optane
Storage 1: Up to 1x 512GB SATA SSD
Storage 2: Up to 1x 2TB SATA HDD
Connectivity: Wireless AC (Up to 867Mbps)
Ports: 6x USB 3.1 Gen1 Type-A
4x USB 2.0 Type-A
1x Microphone Jack
1x Headphone Jack
1x HDMI
1x Gigabit Ethernet
1x PS/2
6x Audio Ports w/S/PDIF
1x 7-in-1 Card Reader
Audio: Dolby Audio Premium
Dimensions (inches): 16.92 (D) x 16.45 (H) x 7.48 (L)
Weight: 23.14 pounds
Operating System: Windows 10 Home
VR Compatibility: Oculus Rift (Certified)
Hero Features: Windows Mixed Reality
Case Color: Onyx Black
Starting Price: $1,000
Availability: October 2017

Lenovo Legion Y520

Finally, we have the Y520 specifically targeting console gamers wanting to “dip their toes” into the pools of PC gaming. It is the only one in the trio offering a seventh-generation Core i3 processor, and Wireless AC connectivity reaching only up to 433Mbps (1×1). It is still capable of running the Oculus Rift and HTC Vive, but you will have a better experience by grabbing the GTX 1060 graphics option.

As for cooling, this desktop includes the main and power supply exhaust fans on the back, and one LED intake fan mounted under the front panel. There are no vents or windows on the sides, and apparently no intake fan on the top, either.

Product Number: Y520T-25IKL
Processor: Intel Core i7-7700 (4-core)
Intel Core i3-7100 (2-core)
Graphics: GeForce GTX 1060
GeForce GTX 1050 Ti
Radeon RX 560
Memory: Up to 16GB DDR4
Storage 1: Up to 1x 128GB PCIe SSD
Storage 2: Up to 1x 2TB HDD
Connectivity: Wireless AC (Up to 433Mbps)
Ports: 4x USB 3.1 Gen1 Type-A
2x USB 2.0 Type-A
1x Microphone Jack
1x Headphone Jack
1x HDMI
1x Gigabit Ethernet
Audio: Dolby Audio Premium
Dimensions (inches): 18.41 (D) x 15.84 (H) x 7.16 (L)
Weight: 33.73 pounds
Operating System: Windows 10 Home
VR Compatibility: Oculus Rift (Certified)
Hero Features: Windows Mixed Reality
Case Color: Onyx Black
Starting Price: $900
Availability: October 2017

Finally, we want to note that the specifications of all three list Windows Mixed Reality as a Microsoft “Hero” feature. This is an internal term used by Microsoft and original equipment manufacturers for specific Windows 10 features, such as special hardware supporting Cortana, hardware supporting Windows Hello, and so on. What this essentially means is that the towers can not only optimally handle the Oculus Rift, but upcoming headsets based on Microsoft’s Windows Mixed Reality platform in Windows 10, which also require VR-capable components.

Lenovo’s three new Legion desktops will arrive sometime in October for a starting price of $900.