Lenovo Legion Go Handheld Gaming PC Review in Australia

In 2017, Lenovo launched the Legion gaming brand that would carry its line of high-end gaming laptops. The Legion gaming laptops have certainly been a gem to avid gamers, especially those who experienced the now-discontinued IdeaPad Y series. However, the smaller Lenovo Legion Go gaming PC has drawn more traction, including from regular folks who don’t game much.

The Legion Go is a modern-day handheld gaming PC, compact enough to use about anywhere. And that includes during your 2-hour flight to the countryside or when on your hammock pergola enjoying the breeze.

While there are dozens of Lenovo Legion Go reviews online, none I’ve seen seems to note its Deck-Switch hybrid design. The handheld console is not only powerful enough to run many AAA games Steam Deck can’t even handle. But also borrows various goodies of the Nintendo Switch, such as the detachable controllers.

Verdict: 6 Top-Best Attributes of the Lenovo Legion Go

  • Lenovo Legion Go has a massive and vibrant display
  • Lenovo Legion Go has plenty of local storage options
  • Lenovo Legion Go has detachable ergonomic controllers
  • Lenovo Legion Go has emulators for other gaming platforms
  • Lenovo Legion Go supports external GPU for faster raw processing
  • Lenovo supports four different gaming modes for optimal experience

Summary Specs of Lenovo Legion Go Handheld Gaming PC Review in Australia

In this guide, I’ve discussed all the relevant details you should know about the Lenovo Legion Go handheld gaming console. The article covers both the good and no-so-good sides of the console to help ensure you make a wise buying decision.

Before coming to the main review, though, the specs of Lenovo Legion Go compared to Steam Deck are as follows:

 Lenovo Legion Go Handheld ConsoleSteam Deck Handheld Console
Release YearOctober 2023November 2023
Dimensions11.8 in x 5.2 in x 1.6 in (W/ controls attached) 11.7 in x 4.6 in x 1.9 in
WeightApprox. 854g (640g without controllers)Approx. 640g
ProcessorRyzen™ Z1 Extreme @ 3.3 – 5.1GHzAMD Custom APU 0405 (@ 2.4 – 3.5GHz)
CPU8-core Zen 4 (w/ 16 threads)4-core Zen 2 (w/ 8 threads)
GPU *12x RDNA 3: 0.8 – 2.7GHz (max. 8.6 TFlops)8x RDNA 2: 1 – 1.6GHz (max. 1.6 TFlops)
Operating SystemWindows 11SteamOS 3 (KDE Plasma on Desktop)
APU Power30W4 – 15W
Operating SystemWindows 11 HomeSteamOS
Built-in GyroYESYES
Built-in Storage512GB or 1TB (+ MicroSD card)512GB or 1TB (+ MicroSD card)
Display size8.8 inches (IPS/LCD)7.4 inches (HDR OLED)
Display BrightnessUp to 500 nits600 – 1000 nits
Handheld Resolution1600p QHD+@144Hz800p HD+@90Hz
Built-in Tracking padsYESYES
Battery Capacity49.2WHr50Whr
Wireless ConnectivityUp to WiFi 6EUp to WiFi 6E tri-band
Wired ConnectivityNON/A (with optional dock)
Standard 3.5mm Audio JackYESYES
Type of USB PortUSB4 (Two)USB-C
HDMI OutputNOYES (with optional dock)
Bluetooth ConnectivityYES (V5.3)YES (V5.3)
Built-in NFC ChipN/AN/A
Gaming ModesFourTwo

Do you like the gaming flexibility of the Nintendo Switch yet would love more power for the heavy AAA video games? The Lenovo Legion Go may have the solution for you.

In the power department, Legion Go utilizes the Ryzen™ Z1 Extreme chip, a new rising star in the gaming industry. Z1 Extreme, which is basically a shrunken-down laptop chip, is the same on the recently released ROG Ally portable gaming PC.

In the Steam Deck vs ASUS ROG Ally reviews, we see the Z1 Extreme chip produces a theoretical performance of up to 8.6 TFLOPs. Thus, you can expect the same on the Legion Go since the processing core is alike.

As for the gaming modes, Lenovo Legion Go supports four different options, including Handheld, Detachable, FPS, and TV mode. But since the company hasn’t released a dock station yet, you’ll have to use the TV mode via the USB4 port.

More on that, read on my full Lenovo Legion Go handheld gaming PC review below.

A Guide on the Features & Capabilities of Lenovo Legion Go Handheld Gaming PC

In this section, I’ve briefly discussed the various things you should know about the new Lenovo Legion Go. The section only covers the crucial facets of the portable gaming console, such as performance, controllability, visuals, real-life vs advertised battery life, etc.

Let’s go!

Lenovo Legion Go Review: Decent Price in Australia

Currently, the Lenovo Legion Go price in Australia is $1,200 with a 512GB SSD. On the company’s online store, this amount shows as the promotional price, as the regular tag sits around $A1,500.

Lenovo has the Legion Go price in the US at $700 with the 512GB local storage. And when we compare the currency exchange rates at the moment, it would mean buying the handheld console here in Australia is more worthwhile.

At the price put down, you get the Lenovo Legion Go shipping box with:

  • Legion Go set, consisting of a Base module and the detachable TrueStrike Controllers)
  • Controller base to turn one controller into a joystick mouse
  • A 65-W Power Adapter to charge or plug in when connecting to an external display
  • Carrying Case to protect the console while transporting

Tip: The Lenovo Legion Go 1TB model is still not available in Australia. In fact, the rumors are that the 1TB version only sells in the US. But as we shall see shortly, storage is nothing to worry about on this portable video game PC.

Lenovo Legion Go Review: Good Build & Design

The Lenovo team that put together the Legion Go gaming PC deserves credit. In the overall design, the console has a well-made build, featuring a glass-filled polycarbonate (PC +GF) material for extra ruggedness.

The gaming controllers (thumbsticks and buttons) also have a premium feel, and so does the kickstand on the back.

Furthermore, the Lenovo handheld gaming console has a cutting-edge Gorilla® Glass 5 (GG5) display. If a fan of Samsung smartphones, you may know GG5 is one of the toughest cover screens, with Corning® claiming it can survive up to 1.2-meter drops onto hard surfaces.

Nonetheless, prevention is always better than cure. Make sure you install a screen protector for the Lenovo Legion Go to be safe.

Note: Lenovo has the Legion Go gaming PC in only a single “black” style. No flashy finishes are available at this time. But they did add an adjustable RGB ring around the thumbsticks and another on the power button.

Lenovo Legion Go Review: Powerful & Fast CPU

Lenovo Legion Go is definitely the best handheld gaming console for AAA games on the go. As I briefly mentioned earlier, it runs on the latest Ryzen™ Z1 Extreme processor, like that on ASUS’ ROG Ally.

Lenovo for some reason left out a lot of information about the processing power of the Legion Go. However, the Z1 Extreme has an 8-core Zen 4 CPU that operates at a default frequency of 3.30GHz and up to 5.1GHz turbo mode with heavy load.

If my guess is right and the GPU of the Legion Go is the 12x RDNA 3, you can expect a theoretical performance of up to 8.6 TFLOPs. And that would make it as powerful as the ROG Ally or 5 times more than the Steam Deck OLED.

In simple words, Lenovo’s Legion Go can play many of the best PC games Valve’s Deck could never launch or run efficiently. Then again, some AAA games like Starfield have also been a kind of disappointment if you don’t twerk the in-game specs.

Lenovo Legion Go Review: Great Gaming Visuals

In comparison to other handheld gaming consoles, Lenovo Legion Go has the best viewing experience. Yes, the graphics lack the rich contrast and deeper black levels of the OLED display on the newer Steam Deck.

But even while darkish and greyish, the images of the Legion Go are still clean and stunning. The extra-wide 8-inch IPS display has a native resolution of 2560 x 1600 (or 1600p QHD+) and a 144Hz refresh rate.

Besides enhancing the graphics, the high refresh rate of the Lenovo console ensures smooth play for competitive PC games. A nice example of these competitive games is Deep Space and No Man’s Sky.

A crucial point worth mentioning is that Lenovo Legion Go has a built-in Radeon Super Resolution feature. Thus, can help enhance the image quality of your games on lower resolution (800p or 1200p) without compromising performance.

Lenovo Legion Go Review: Plenty of Local Storage

Indeed, you may never have to worry about storage with the Lenovo Legion Go. Of course, I’m disappointed the company is only giving us the 512GB console (Legion Go 1TB is only available in the US). Fortunately, only RAM is soldered (unupgradable).

The storage drive of the Legion Go handheld PC is unsoldered and easily removable. It is possible to upgrade the 512GB storage to 1TB or even 2TB with no special skills needed.

What makes it better, the portable Lenovo gaming console has a built-in slot where you can insert up to a 2TB MicroSD card. So, you’ll have more than enough storage to download your games and save recordings.

Lenovo Legion Go Review: Extensive Gaming Library

If you remember, I mentioned Lenovo Legion Go is a shrunken-down laptop (or runs on a shrunken-down laptop chip). As such, you have access to numerous video games the older handheld gaming consoles don’t support.

Legion Space is the UI (user interface) Lenovo created for the users of this console. It is a very intuitive interface, as you not only have access to hundreds of PC games for download (from Games Planet). One can also link with various top game launchers, such as Xbox, Ubisoft, GOG, Epic, Rockstar, and Steam.

Furthermore, Lenovo Legion Go supports cloud gaming. Then, you can launch the Android emulator and download games from the Amazon App Store.

Lenovo Legion Go Review: Amazing Gaming Experience

Like a lot of machines, the overall user experience on a handheld gaming console varies from one person to another. How does it fare out with the Lenovo Legion Go, though?

If we start on the obvious, Legion Go is rather big on dimensions and weight. It weighs around 860g (almost 2lb) when with controllers attached. Some users may be unable to hold it for long hours without getting cramped.

Fortunately, Lenovo understood the size and weight issue when innovating Legion Go. So, they made sure everything was well-balanced for comfortable gaming and the grips have a deep groove to provide a firm grasp.

Speaking of the grasp, the handheld video game console has the controllers in the natural grasping position of the fingers. And that includes the ABXY buttons, D-pad, thumbsticks, shoulder triggers, as well as the rear custom buttons.

In addition, Lenovo Legion Go has a right-side trackpad to emulate a mouse when needed for shooter games in handheld mode. If desired, you can get sharper shooting precision by enabling the FPS mode.

Tip: Lenovo Legion Go has four play modes:

  1. Handheld mode, where you play the game with the controllers attached to the Legion Go gamepad
  2. Detachable mode, where you detach the controllers, and set the gamepad on a flat surface with its kickstand. Then, relax on the seat while enjoying your favorite games with the controllers in your hands.
  3. FPS mode, where you set the gamepad on the table and connect the right controller to the optional base. Then, you enable the FPS mode switch and play your shooter games with enhanced precision.
  4. TV mode, where you connect your Legion Go to an external monitor/ TV (via USB4) for a more immersive gaming experience.

Lenovo Legion Go Review: No-Great Battery Life

Last but not least, the Lenovo Legion Go has an integrated 49.2WHr Li-polymer rechargeable battery. In the user manual, Lenovo claims you can achieve over 7 hours of local games at minimum settings (150 nits brightness).

Come to reality, though, a game like Shadow of the Tomb Raider gives you about one and a half hours of playtime. Ori and the Will can run for about an hour and 40 minutes when playing at a 1200p resolution. Then, Armored Core VI can keep the machine on for two hours and 10 minutes if playing at lower resolutions (like 800p or 720p).

If we’re to compare Lenovo Legion Go vs Steam Deck OLED side by side, they have about the same battery capacity. However, the Steam Deck OLED has a whole extra hour of playing, which is understandable with its lower specs.

Note: Despite its rapid power consumption, Legion GO PC charges rather fast as well. When with a proper charger, you can charge from 0 to 70% in half an hour, or full capacity (0-100%) in 80 minutes.

In Conclusion:

If we’re to talk about everything you get or miss on the Lenovo Legion Go, we’d be here for hours. However, the nine here are the most crucial features and specs you should know of the handheld gaming PC.

The points are nine as I intentionally left out the aspect of versatility. As a Windows 11 system, Legion GO is for more than gaming, whereby you can efficiently run most Windows-compatible applications.

Lenovo actually sends Legion Go with preinstalled apps, such as Microsoft Clipchamp, PowerPoint, Word, Excel, Outlook, etc. Then, you can connect a wireless gaming mouse like the Logitech G PRO X Superlight 2 and keyboard for enhanced usability.

Common Related Questions

Is the Lenovo Legion Go worth buying?

Yes, the Lenovo Legion Go gaming PC is worth buying if looking for a powerful handheld console to game away from home. It has power enough to run many AAA PC games the Steam Deck and many handheld consoles can’t handle.

Besides gaming, one can use Legion Go to run various productivity software compatible with Windows 11. For instance, you can run applications for Microsoft Office, video editing, 3D design tools like SolidWorks, et cetera.

How many hours does the Lenovo Legion Go battery last to deplete?

Lenovo claims the Legion Go battery can last over 7 hours while playing less demanding games on low settings. In my research, though, titles like Armored Core VI drain the battery completely for a little over 2 hours at low resolutions of 800p or 720p.

As for most of the other AAA games, the Lenovo Legion Go battery lasts roughly one and a half hours. Thus, the Steam Deck OLED has bested it here as you can get 3 hours of gameplay or more.

Can I play all Steam games on the Lenovo Legion Go handheld PC?

Lenovo Legion Go can play games from other gaming platforms, such as Steam, Xbox, GOG, Epic, and Rockstar. When playing Steam games, you can expect improved performance since the Lenovo console has a heavier processor. But the Steam Deck OLED has better graphics from its oled display with HDR and high pixel density.

Does Legion Go has any drawbacks I should know?

Sadly, Lenovo Legion Go has several pros and drawbacks you should know before buying it. They include:

Drawbacks/ Cons of Legion Go

  • The console is a bit bulky
  • Battery life is less than desired
  • Has no wired internet (Ethernet) port
  • Doesn’t feature verified games like Steam Deck
  • It has no dock station available- for purchase or otherwise

Positives/ Pros of Legion Go

  • It has the latest, fastest processor
  • Offers stunning visuals at 1600p @144Hz
  • Has an upgradable storage drive and MicroSD slot
  • Supports the latest WiFi 6E for faster downloads
  • Has detachable controllers to enhance portability and gaming
  • Features a built-in trackpad and FPS mode for precision on shooter games
  • You can play games from Xbox, Steam, Epic, and other famous platforms

Note: Images courtesy of Lenovo

About Michael Wanjiru

Michael Wanjiru is a guest writer at Craving Tech. He is a professional writer and a regular contributor at Craving Tech covering tech-product reviews and how-to guides. As an SEO writer with marketing background, he has helped dozen of clients build their online footprint with high-quality content that engages and converts.

Have a topic or product review you want written? Drop Mike an email and he’s always ready to help.

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