Computers & Electronics

Which laptop would you recommend for non-gamer - Hp IntelCore i5-8250U or Lenovo Y520 intel i5-7300

  • Last Updated:
  • Nov 9th, 2018 6:36 pm
[OP]
Jr. Member
Jun 1, 2015
139 posts
52 upvotes
Calgary, AB

Which laptop would you recommend for non-gamer - Hp IntelCore i5-8250U or Lenovo Y520 intel i5-7300

Looking to replace an old laptop that has been extremely slow lately and un-reliable. Considering these 2 laptops that shoppers drug mart carries. The first is the hp intel core i5 8250U ($700 at shoppers on sale plus you get bonus points if bought during bonus points days)

Link to HPs website with specs - https://support.hp.com/ca-en/document/c06075782

After browsing through several laptop threads on RFD, the consensus seems to be that these somewhat "budget" laptops need a SSD upgrade to increase performance and I gather this particular laptop is in the same boat.

There is also this lenovo laptop that shoppers recently started advertising which is roughly $200 more when on sale compared to the i5 mentioned above ($900 for the lenovo when on sale at shoppers).

Link for lenovo laptop, for the specs

https://m.newegg.ca/products/N82E168348 ... PID=749547

From reading the comments on the lenovo laptop (shoppers) thread, most agreed that this laptop would also benefit from a ssd upgrade. This particular laptop seems to be geared towards gamers/gaming from the marketing anyway.

My question is, for those that are familiar with specs on laptops etc, which 1 of these would you recommend for someone like myself that is just looking to use it for day to day functions such as browsing online, ms office software. I dont necessarily need something lightning speed but dont want something that is super slow or freezes etc. Also, how easy is it to install SSD - i have never attempted to do this before. Is it generally something you can find step by step youtube videos for and easy to install for the average joe? I have had bad experiences with hp laptops (usually bought hp laptops around the $400-500 range) and they have not lasted more than 2 years (start becoming painfully slow and after a few more months, stop working altogether) but as i mentioned earlier, I have also not looked at upgrading to ssd either. I am leaning towards the lenovo based on my prior experiences with hp laptops alone but also wondering if the lenovo would be overkill for my needs especially since it sounds like adding the ssd is recommended for both these laptops.

Which of the 2 would likely be a better fit for my needs and last me a few years without having to deal with a super slow laptop that is not reliable past the 1-2 years and considering the $200 price difference?
14 replies
Member
Mar 26, 2008
289 posts
50 upvotes
if your laptop is slow, one possibility is that it's full of spyware. maybe download something like superantispyware (free) and some other free antivirus programs (maybe avast) and see if that improves your performance, or just do a re-install of your OS after saving your valuable files.
Newbie
Nov 20, 2017
45 posts
43 upvotes
What is your laptop? Specs if possible!

First off, neither of these are actually "budget" laptops. They're entry-level *gaming* laptops, which means they're actually middle-to-high end, as gaming is one of the the most demanding things "across all hardware" you can do on a computer (it relies on your RAM, CPU, GPU, and HDD/SSD for performance).

If you're just browsing the net (or, more simply, as long as you're NOT playing games or rendering film/photos), these laptops are both WAY overkill. I'd recommend following up with the other guy's comment and getting your own laptop checked out for:

- Spyware/malware
- Dust and fluff
- Updated drivers and OS (consider reformatting your drive and reinstalling Windows)
- Consider getting an SSD (easy to do, tutorials available for every laptop on YouTube)

Hope that helps (and saves you some $$$, which should be the real RFD effect!)
Last edited by prodacc on Nov 8th, 2018 8:30 am, edited 1 time in total.
Reason: full answer
Deal Expert
Mar 23, 2004
23083 posts
3444 upvotes
I didn't look through all the specs (sorry) but the 8250U is hands down the better CPU than the 7300. The 7300 is from an older era (I'm not saying it's old per se I'm saying it's from the older era) where mobile i5s and i7s were mostly still DC + HT processors.

The 8250U isn't just QC, it actually also has HT which makes it more like an i7 desktop CPU from previous generations. I'm actually surprised they marketed these as i5s and not i7s but then again since CL a desktop i5 is HC (w/o HT), so the mobile counterpart is still a lesser CPU from that perspective.

The 8250U can apparently turbo to 3.4 on all four but if a given laptop boosts that high and how long it will hold it, is subject to the laptop maker's BIOS implementation and how good the cooling solution is. However, I don't think there are many (if any) real-world scenarios where a 7300U will outperform an 8250U--it's def. the better CPU. If all other things are roughly equal on the two (similar RAM, screen, SSD) then the 8250U laptop is superior.
Deal Fanatic
Mar 6, 2005
5717 posts
754 upvotes
ES_Revenge wrote:
Nov 8th, 2018 8:24 pm
I didn't look through all the specs (sorry) but the 8250U is hands down the better CPU than the 7300. The 7300 is from an older era (I'm not saying it's old per se I'm saying it's from the older era) where mobile i5s and i7s were mostly still DC + HT processors.

The 8250U isn't just QC, it actually also has HT which makes it more like an i7 desktop CPU from previous generations. I'm actually surprised they marketed these as i5s and not i7s but then again since CL a desktop i5 is HC (w/o HT), so the mobile counterpart is still a lesser CPU from that perspective.

The 8250U can apparently turbo to 3.4 on all four but if a given laptop boosts that high and how long it will hold it, is subject to the laptop maker's BIOS implementation and how good the cooling solution is. However, I don't think there are many (if any) real-world scenarios where a 7300U will outperform an 8250U--it's def. the better CPU. If all other things are roughly equal on the two (similar RAM, screen, SSD) then the 8250U laptop is superior.
The Lenovo is actually 7300HQ. So quad core no HT under sustained load it should do better as it’s a 45W TDP CPU and the cooling system would be designed appropriately for 45W TDP.
Deal Expert
Mar 23, 2004
23083 posts
3444 upvotes
tkyoshi wrote:
Nov 8th, 2018 9:14 pm
The Lenovo is actually 7300HQ. So quad core no HT under sustained load it should do better as it’s a 45W TDP CPU and the cooling system would be designed appropriately for 45W TDP.
Ah okay OP didn't mention that (and, as mentioned I didn't click on links). The 7300HQ will perform pretty similarly in this case. However I think you're reaching on that last part--you must not know what laptop makers are like! :P
Deal Fanatic
Mar 6, 2005
5717 posts
754 upvotes
ES_Revenge wrote:
Nov 8th, 2018 9:16 pm
Ah okay OP didn't mention that (and, as mentioned I didn't click on links). The 7300HQ will perform pretty similarly in this case. However I think you're reaching on that last part--you must not know what laptop makers are like! :P
;)

Ideally you’d think they’d at least meet Intel’s min spec but yeah.... the problem w the new 8xxx series U CPU (or really Laptops In general) is the large inconsistency in coolers which makes it very hard to compare performance between laptops.
[OP]
Jr. Member
Jun 1, 2015
139 posts
52 upvotes
Calgary, AB
danron1376 wrote:
Nov 8th, 2018 7:18 am
if your laptop is slow, one possibility is that it's full of spyware. maybe download something like superantispyware (free) and some other free antivirus programs (maybe avast) and see if that improves your performance, or just do a re-install of your OS after saving your valuable files.
prodacc wrote:
Nov 8th, 2018 8:05 am
What is your laptop? Specs if possible!

First off, neither of these are actually "budget" laptops. They're entry-level *gaming* laptops, which means they're actually middle-to-high end, as gaming is one of the the most demanding things "across all hardware" you can do on a computer (it relies on your RAM, CPU, GPU, and HDD/SSD for performance).

If you're just browsing the net (or, more simply, as long as you're NOT playing games or rendering film/photos), these laptops are both WAY overkill. I'd recommend following up with the other guy's comment and getting your own laptop checked out for:

- Spyware/malware
- Dust and fluff
- Updated drivers and OS (consider reformatting your drive and reinstalling Windows)
- Consider getting an SSD (easy to do, tutorials available for every laptop on YouTube)

Hope that helps (and saves you some $$$, which should be the real RFD effect!)
Thanks for the replies. Honestly, spent A LOT of time trying to diagnose a couple hp laptops and tried everything i could think of including reformatting. The only thing i did not attempt on either was to add SSD as mentioned in OP. Despite all that, 1 of the laptops still wouldn't load windows (see a blue screen on start up saying, "hard disk error and that smart hard disk check has detected imminent failure). The other laptop, after re-formatting does function but at an EXTREMELY slow pace - I'm talking, it takes 3-4 minutes to see chrome open/load after turning the laptop on. I'm not the most tech/computer savvy and typically try to google the errors i see to see what others have had success with or things to try. I felt quite frustrated with the time i spent on trying to get the 2 laptops working and figured i should spend a bit more and get a higher level laptop to prevent having to deal with the headaches i experienced with these 2. That is the reason im willing to spend the $700-900 (although this is shoppers pricing so likely is a bit inflated).

2 follow up questions. Given the hard disk error on the old laptop, would adding ssd potentially resolve the issue with the laptop?

Also, if i were to go ahead with the 2 laptops mentioned in OP, can i expect to not run into the type of issues (slow laptop and eventually no longer working after a couple years) or are the issues i described with my old laptops something i am likely to encounter again even with these slightly higher level laptops?
[OP]
Jr. Member
Jun 1, 2015
139 posts
52 upvotes
Calgary, AB
ES_Revenge wrote:
Nov 8th, 2018 8:24 pm
I didn't look through all the specs (sorry) but the 8250U is hands down the better CPU than the 7300. The 7300 is from an older era (I'm not saying it's old per se I'm saying it's from the older era) where mobile i5s and i7s were mostly still DC + HT processors.

The 8250U isn't just QC, it actually also has HT which makes it more like an i7 desktop CPU from previous generations. I'm actually surprised they marketed these as i5s and not i7s but then again since CL a desktop i5 is HC (w/o HT), so the mobile counterpart is still a lesser CPU from that perspective.

The 8250U can apparently turbo to 3.4 on all four but if a given laptop boosts that high and how long it will hold it, is subject to the laptop maker's BIOS implementation and how good the cooling solution is. However, I don't think there are many (if any) real-world scenarios where a 7300U will outperform an 8250U--it's def. the better CPU. If all other things are roughly equal on the two (similar RAM, screen, SSD) then the 8250U laptop is superior.
tkyoshi wrote:
Nov 8th, 2018 9:14 pm
The Lenovo is actually 7300HQ. So quad core no HT under sustained load it should do better as it’s a 45W TDP CPU and the cooling system would be designed appropriately for 45W TDP.
Sorry, yeah, not the most familiar with the various abbreviations (HQ etc) so was not sure which abbreviation would be relevant here for comparisons sake.

So i take it the lenovo 7300 then is the superior CPU - do you think it justifies the additional $200 price tag for a basic user (non gamer) like myself? Also, would either 1 or both eventually lead to issues with the laptop slowing down and no longer functioning after a few years?
Deal Fanatic
Mar 6, 2005
5717 posts
754 upvotes
RigorMortis wrote:
Nov 9th, 2018 1:50 pm
Sorry, yeah, not the most familiar with the various abbreviations (HQ etc) so was not sure which abbreviation would be relevant here for comparisons sake.

So i take it the lenovo 7300 then is the superior CPU - do you think it justifies the additional $200 price tag for a basic user (non gamer) like myself? Also, would either 1 or both eventually lead to issues with the laptop slowing down and no longer functioning after a few years?
If you’re talking “basic user” prob overkill. But if it’s within you’re budget then sure go for it. Both CPUs are good it’s more the design of the laptop that will determine longevity.

For sustained workloads the Lenovo should do better.
Member
Mar 26, 2008
289 posts
50 upvotes
RigorMortis wrote:
Nov 9th, 2018 1:36 pm
Thanks for the replies. Honestly, spent A LOT of time trying to diagnose a couple hp laptops and tried everything i could think of including reformatting. The only thing i did not attempt on either was to add SSD as mentioned in OP. Despite all that, 1 of the laptops still wouldn't load windows (see a blue screen on start up saying, "hard disk error and that smart hard disk check has detected imminent failure). The other laptop, after re-formatting does function but at an EXTREMELY slow pace - I'm talking, it takes 3-4 minutes to see chrome open/load after turning the laptop on. I'm not the most tech/computer savvy and typically try to google the errors i see to see what others have had success with or things to try. I felt quite frustrated with the time i spent on trying to get the 2 laptops working and figured i should spend a bit more and get a higher level laptop to prevent having to deal with the headaches i experienced with these 2. That is the reason im willing to spend the $700-900 (although this is shoppers pricing so likely is a bit inflated).

2 follow up questions. Given the hard disk error on the old laptop, would adding ssd potentially resolve the issue with the laptop?

Also, if i were to go ahead with the 2 laptops mentioned in OP, can i expect to not run into the type of issues (slow laptop and eventually no longer working after a couple years) or are the issues i described with my old laptops something i am likely to encounter again even with these slightly higher level laptops?
i could be wrong but it looks like your two hard drives have failed (in the first case) or failing (in the second case where it runs slow). run a program called 'crystakdiskinfo' on the 2nd laptop and it will tell you the health of your drive. i think adding a working hard drive or SSD would 'fix' the issues on both laptops but if your laptops are older (core 2 duo or less ie more than 10 years old) it's better to get a new laptop.

2. new laptops bought today should last at least 5 years. it doesn't take that much tech just to surf in the internet. you could get by with a 5-7 year-old laptop today if all you are doing is watching youtube and word processing. if a laptop slows down it's likely due to spyware/adware, which, as mentioned, is remedied by regularly running an antispyware/antivirus program. the only reason you upgrade is for software that has higher requirements and this is 99% computer-game related.
[OP]
Jr. Member
Jun 1, 2015
139 posts
52 upvotes
Calgary, AB
danron1376 wrote:
Nov 9th, 2018 2:50 pm
i could be wrong but it looks like your two hard drives have failed (in the first case) or failing (in the second case where it runs slow). run a program called 'crystakdiskinfo' on the 2nd laptop and it will tell you the health of your drive. i think adding a working hard drive or SSD would 'fix' the issues on both laptops but if your laptops are older (core 2 duo or less ie more than 10 years old) it's better to get a new laptop.

2. new laptops bought today should last at least 5 years. it doesn't take that much tech just to surf in the internet. you could get by with a 5-7 year-old laptop today if all you are doing is watching youtube and word processing. if a laptop slows down it's likely due to spyware/adware, which, as mentioned, is remedied by regularly running an antispyware/antivirus program. the only reason you upgrade is for software that has higher requirements and this is 99% computer-game related.
So essentially, the ssd is what i need to be looking into then for all the issues ive described since even with the 2 new laptops at shoppers im looking at, the consensus in the thread in hot deals seems to be to add ssd to them too due to the 5400 rpm hard drives on them.

So basically, with the addition of ssd i should see the laptop perform faster and last longer (as long as it is free of spyware/viruses). So both the laptops themselves (ie the hp 8250U or the lenovo) should perform adequately fast and last just as long as the other if i add ssd to either of them? Think I'm just going to move on from the old laptops - it makes me angry to even think about the time and energy wasted on them :(
Member
Mar 26, 2008
289 posts
50 upvotes
RigorMortis wrote:
Nov 9th, 2018 3:33 pm
So essentially, the ssd is what i need to be looking into then for all the issues ive described since even with the 2 new laptops at shoppers im looking at, the consensus in the thread in hot deals seems to be to add ssd to them too due to the 5400 rpm hard drives on them.

So basically, with the addition of ssd i should see the laptop perform faster and last longer (as long as it is free of spyware/viruses). So both the laptops themselves (ie the hp 8250U or the lenovo) should perform adequately fast and last just as long as the other if i add ssd to either of them? Think I'm just going to move on from the old laptops - it makes me angry to even think about the time and energy wasted on them :(
what the SSD mainly improves is load up time. a 5400 rpm hard drive will boot up at around 3-4 minutes but with an SSD, around 30 seconds. with an SSD, your programs will also start up faster. the SSD itself doesn't increase the lifespan of your computer. i think you should go to bestbuy and check out the laptops that they have on display. most, if not all are hooked up to the internet. you can then see what kind of performance you would find acceptable first hand and at what cost. btw you might be surprised that a 400$ laptop would perform just as well as one that is 800$. as mentioned, it doesn't take much power to run simple tasks such as browsing on the internet. the main difference in price might be a higher resolution screen. i'd recommend getting a better screen at the expense of processing power because you don't need a super fast processor to do daily tasks.

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