Lenovo offers three lines of laptops: ThinkPad, IdeaPad, and Essential. The basic difference between them is that they are optimized for either business or consumer purposes.
ThinkPads are enhanced for business purposes. They are sturdily-built, have square cases with sharp edges, and come mostly in standard black. Their hardware features are high-quality and functional, including Intel processors, integrated webcams, high-speed USB 3.0 ports, multi-format card readers, hard disk drive impact protection, and DisplayPorts. They still have the red TrackPoint button embedded in the keyboard, but it's more of a stylish legacy feature, with users relying more on the Windows 8-optimized trackpads. Finally, they are preloaded with business-friendly software such as the Lenovo Solutions Center (a system health dashboard), Trusted Platform Module (a client security software solution), password manager, and Lenovo Cloud Storage.
DWSS focuses its selection of Lenovo internet surfboards, however, on its lines of consumer-enhanced laptops: Essential and IdeaPad.
Available only in the G-Series, Essential laptops are Lenovo's budget laptops, made for everyday computer tasks like word processing, emailing, social networking, watching DVDs or streaming videos, simple video or photo editing, and casually surfing the internet. Built with a durable plastic body, they start at around $350, but they usually sell for between $500-700. They typically have 4th-generation Intel Core processors, integrated Intel graphics, 4-8GB RAM, and 500GB-1TB hard drives. They also come in 15.6" and 17.3" display sizes with partial HD (1366X768, up to 720p) resolutions.
IdeaPad laptops are Lenovo's higher-grade consumer laptops, for consumers who are willing to pay a little more for better design, firepower, and luxury. They are split up into the Z-Series, Y-Series, and U-Series, with notable differences between them (there is also the S-Series and Yoga-Series, which DWSS does not list.)
Z-Series IdeaPads are Lenovo's mainstream consumer laptops, striking a balance between design, performance, and affordability. Made with a durable plastic body, they usually sell for between $600-800. They typically feature 4th-generation Intel Core processors, integrated Intel graphics, 4-8GB RAM, and 500GB-1TB hard drives. They come in a greater variety of display sizes than the Essential G-Series, including 14", 15.6", and 17.3". They also have a greater variety of resolutions, including partial HD (1366X768 and 1600X900, up to 720p) and full HD (1920X1080, up to 1080p.)
Y-Series IdeaPads are Lenovo's premium consumer laptops, optimized for high-intensity gaming, high-definition multimedia consumption, professional multimedia creation, and heavy multi-tasking. Constructed with a brushed aluminum chassis, they usually sell for between $800-1000, but sometimes higher with upgrades. They typically feature the same 4th-generation Intel Core processors as other Lenovo laptop series, but they also come with much more hardware firepower. They typically sport discrete NVIDIA GeForce graphics processors, 8-16GB RAM, and 1TB hard drives. They come in 14" and 15.6" display sizes with partial HD (1600X900) and full HD (1920X1080) resolutions.
U-Series IdeaPads are Lenovo's Ultrabook and Ultrabook-style laptops, built with stylishness, portability, and boot-up speed in mind. Because Ultrabook standards, which are controlled by Intel, are very precise but constantly changing, caution must be exercised when describing any laptop as an Ultrabook. Previous U-Series IdeaPads met the standards, but some of the 2013 models do not. Beginning in 2013, Ultrabooks were required to be no more than 23mm (.91") in thickness, to wake up from sleep mode in under 3 seconds, to provide at least 9 hours of battery life when idle, and to have a touchscreen, among other things. Some of the latest U-Series IdeaPads meet these standards, but others do not.
While all U-Series IdeaPads meet the thickness, wake-up, and battery life Ultrabook standards, not all of them come with a touchscreen. They also feature 4th-generation Intel Core processors, Intel or NVIDIA graphics processors, 14" or 15.6" partial (1366X768) or full (1920X1080) HD displays, 4-8GB RAM, and 500GB-1TB hard drives with 8-16GB solid state drives.
Listed below are the latest 2013 Lenovo laptop models. Older 2012 models are listed in a separate section because they might still be available from vendors. They are also listed as a resource for shoppers who are considering buying used models and need their specs, or for shoppers who wish to compare newer with older models to evaluate upgrades.