Today’s review we’ll see a pair of the gaming laptop juggernauts of 2022: in this review we have the Legion 7i fro Lenovo’s gaming brand Legion and also up for review is the MSI GT77 Titan. Both laptops have their own story and pedigree and we’ll touch on that history before we begin. In the case of the Legion 7i, its the culmination of several years of perfecting their design formula and Lenovo seems to be confident enough with their cooling design as well as their feature set as today’s laptop has an asking price of Php274,995. In exchange for its premium price tag is arguably the most loyal design we’ve seen in this generation as competiition for the top performing laptop has seen special case designs for both MSI and ROG’s flagship performers, Lenovo’s Legion 7i for 2022 keeps it more traditional yet still have some modern design cues mixed in.
Read on to find out more about this year’s refresh of the Legion 7i.
The Legion 7i 2022 variant is offered in either a Core i7-12800HX or a Core i9-12900HX CPUs. Both are overclocked mobile CPUs rated for higher power draw than their H45 counterpart but are designed for more demanding applications. This is complmeted by up to 32GB of DDR5-4800 memory and up to 2TB of Gen4 M.2 NVMe SSD storage. The screen is a 1600p WQHD+ 165hz IPS panel with 100% sRGB coverage rated for 500nits of brightness.
Graphics is available in either an RTX 3070 Ti or the flaghsip RTX 3080 Ti mobile GPU’s from NVIDIA. Our sample is the highest configuration available as announced by Lenovo and will have a retail price of Php274,995.
This Legion 7i 2022 is unique amongst its class as it provdes more sensory experiences with the help of Force Sensor Technology on the WASD keys that detect how hard you press. This is also joined by Tobii Horizon camera technology allowing for head movement tracking. Lastly, Lenovo installs a 99.99Whr battery to power the Legion 7i with Super Rapid Charge rated for charging times of 30wh for a 10min charge and a 0-100% charge in 80 minutes.
Design and Layout
With 16″ laptops becoming the larger screen preference than 17″, Lenovo didn’t have to change much on their design. The Legion 7i 2022 follows the same formula for Legion laptops from recent years with the Storm Grey chassis and minimalist branding.
As with all Lenovo Legion models, we have 3-sides with I/O ports with the back loaded with most of the IO ports. In total we have two Thunderbolt 4 Type-C ports capable 40Gbps speeds with compatible devices and also video display via Type-C DisplayPort 1.4 on the left.
On the right is a USB-C 3.2 Gen1 port with 5Gbps coupled with 3.5mm audio combo jack and a physical switch for the webcam e-shutter.
The back has a pair of USB Type-A 3.2 Gen1 ports with one of them being an always-on port for active charging. We also get another USB3.2 Type-C Gen2x2 with DisplayPort and 135W PowerDelivery charging support.
Lastly we have the 2.5GbE LAN port, an HDMI port and the power input jack.
Lenovo Legion’s TrueStrike Pro keyboard on the Legion 7i 2022 is the same layout as we’ve come to love from all Legion laptops but now comes with a Force Sensor developed by Peratech which simulates force triggers similar to that of the PlayStation 5’s should triggers. This allows actions in compatibles applications especially games to adapt to how hard you press. Compatible games may allow players to walk with a light press, run a with a medium press and a total sprint when fully pressed.
Featuring a taller 16:10 display, the Legion 7i follows this current trend of using this aspect ratio versus the wide 16:9. This logically increases vertical screen real estate, even for a bit which should add a fair amount of room especially for reading and full screen applications. Games of course will also receive a slight penalty, but nothing too grand.
Lenovo has formally ended their partnership with Corsair for their RGB lighting. Starting 2022, Legion now uses Legion Spectrum for their RGB control, an in-house developed software aimed optimize performance as there has been report of Corsair using resources unnecesarily for their RGB control software. The Legion 7i 2022 supports per-key RGB control on the keyboard with the rest of the body featuring a halo-style underglow for added effects. The underglow automatically turned off when in battery mode.
We start all test off with a battery life test to see how long the battery will last under office usage. We use PCMark 10 Battery Test which loops word processing, email, spreadsheet, and other office applications as well as browsing and teleconferencing over and over again until the laptop cuts off. Depending on your laptop and when power saving kicks in, there may be some battery left once the test cuts off which is anywhere from 10% to 2%.
Performance – Rendering
Cinebench R20 and Cinebench R23 are industry standard for gauging system performance but outside the arbitrary numbers, the performance scores is the mesure of 3D rendering performance of a given system in Maxon’s Cinema4D application. Meanwhile, Blender Benchmark measures the performance of a system within a minute. Higher values means higher performance.
Performance – Office and Productivity
Photo and Video
PugetSystems is a US-based system builder that provides high-performance computers built for workstation solutions. They developed an in-house benchmarking tool for various apps including Adobe Photoshop, Premiere Pro, After Effects, Davinci Resolve and a few others. These benchmarks put a professional-level workload on systems and are scored based on a reference system. The current version PugetBenchmark for Photoshop is scored against a Core i9-9900K system while the Premiere Pro benchmark is scored against a Ryzen 9 5900X. PugetBench is a plugin to the software it is named after and requires actual Adobe software to function. For a detailed description of the benchmark, see here (Ps) and here (Pr).
Potentially the most used desktop software next to Windows OS is Microsoft Office. . This tests the responsiveness and system performance of the system when doing common office-users tasks, such as copying, pasting, cutting, adding images, resizing, saving, etc..
Performance – BAPCo CrossMark
CrossMark is a cross-platform benchmark aimed to provide comparative data for different platforms. It uses application models and gauges system performance and responsiveness to generate a score.
Performance – PCMark 10
PCMark is a global standard in benchmarking PCs to meet organizational as well as consumer requirements. PC Mark 10 is the latest version and provides details for office, multimedia use as well as extended features like battery testing for mobile devices, storage testing and a lot more advanced testing features.
Performance – SPECworkstation
SPECworkstation is part of multiple benchmark suites provided by the Standard Performance Evaluation Corporation (SPEC) aimed at providing a standard and unified benchmarking system to meet organizational requirements and performance expectations.
Featuring an RTX 3080 Ti and a native 1440p resolution monitor, the Legion 7i 2022 is the highest-specced gaming laptop we’ve tested to date with an Intel+NVIDIA configuration.
Value & Conclusion
We have at least 2 of the fastest laptops out in our local market right now not including their counterparts bearing AMD CPUs but amongst all of them, the Legion 7i 2022 holds a certain advantage and that’s in its overall footprint. While the ROG Zephyrus 16 Duo and MSI GT77 TITAN are somewhat bulkier, in terms of sheer volume, the Legion 7i Pro 2022 holds the best balance amongst all 3 with only the external GPU equipped Flow Z13 taking the advantage in absolute portability. But when it comes to traditional form factor, Lenovo managing to squeeze in and being able to cool the Legion 7i 2022 is an engineering feat.
This results in impressive performance with productivity benchmarks that rely on absolute CPU and GPU peformance scoring fairly high, going neck to neck or even better than the MSI GT77 Titan. In gaming, the Legion 7i, while performing fairly well, is bogged down by its own GPU overpowering the laptop’s cooling and not really allowing it to reach the heights that it can as shown in the GT77 TITAN with its large cooling system. To be fair, the MSI GT77 titan is almost twice as thick as the Lenovo Legion 7i Pro 2022.
In terms of usability, it presents the best form factor that allows the best usability with its traditional laptop design. But performance alone can’t justify the asking price of the Legion 7i Pro 2022 which is why Lenovo’s new TrueStrike Pro keyboard and its Force Sensor technology as well as Tobii camera extends the gaming experience on compatible titles. For productivity and general use, the healthy helping of IO ports allow a multitude of connectivity or storage and other devices.
But ultimately, the bulk of the cost is from the specs and the Legion 7i Pro 2022 is certainly an impressive beast but I will argue against going for the RTX 3080 Ti model if you just want to game. The RTX 3070 Ti model, if available in your locale would be the better option as evidence the ROG Strix SCAR 15 we’ve reviewed before which shows very impressive gaming performance even in 1440p versus the Legion 7i 2022’s RTX 3080 Ti. An inherent issue with all RTX 3080 Ti model is that once heat-soaked, the RTX 3080 Ti will drop to its performance to manage thermals leading to lower FPS or benchmark results in GPU-reliant tasks.
There’s only a handful of laptops of the same specs sheet and similar form factor in the same space as the Legion 7i 2022 and many of them exhibit the same behavior so ultimately, the decision will boil down to your personal preference. In the case of the Legion 7i 2022, there is the 3-year Premium Care warranty as well as the Accidental Damage Protection which is also served on top of Microsoft Office. This does sweeten the deal to the point that its really hard to justify going for another brand especially if you’re trying to max out your purchase.
The Legion 7i 2022 is available now in the Philippines. Contact Lenovo’s Legion page and community pages for updated information or visit your favorite Lenovo and Legion concept stores or authorized dealer for pricing and availability.