Lenovo Legion Tower 5i review: Don’t let the lower-end specs fool you

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Techaeris Rated 9.7/10

PC gaming is an amazing thing. I enjoy it, our Senior Editor Jason enjoys it, and my daughter enjoys it on her gaming PC. Lenovo’s Legion series desktops and laptops are not new to the PC gaming scene.

Estimated reading time: 10 minutes

Our Legion 5i (26L) gaming desktop for this review looks at a system that includes an Intel Core i5-13400F CPU, a stock cooler, an Nvidia RTX 3060 12GB, 16GB DDR5 5600MHz, three ARGB fans, and other features. Continue reading to learn more about it.

The Quick Take

Lenovo’s latest Legion 5i gaming desktop gives you a variety of configurations to choose from depending on your budget. It also comes with plenty of power and software letting you play games at a steady framerate — all at an affordable price if you take advantage of any sales going on.


The Lenovo Legion 5i gaming desktop tower we reviewed has the following features and specifications (configurable when ordering):

Operating SystemWindows 11 Home
ProcessorIntel 13th Gen Core i5-13400F (P-cores up to 4.60GHz, E-cores up to 3.30GHz)
GraphicsNvidia RTX 3060 LHR 12GB GDDR6
Memory16GB DDR5 at up to 4400MHz (UDIMM) – 2x 8GB
Storage512GB M.2 4.0×4 NVMe (474GB useable)
ConnectivityWiFi 6e 802.11AX (2 x 2), Bluetooth 5.1, 2.5GbE Realtek RTL8125GB Gaming Ethernet
Cooling System1x rear 120mm + 2x 120mm ARGB fans
SlotsSupports up to five drives, 2x 3.5″ HDD, 2x M.2 SSD,
I/O PortsTop: 2x USB-A 3.2 Gen 1, Headphone port, Microphone port

Rear: 1 USB-C 3.2 Gen 2, 2 USB-A 3.2 Gen 1, 4 USB-A 2.0, HDMI 2.1
3x DisplayPort™ 1.4a, Ethernet (RJ45), LED switch for ARGB lighting,
3x audio ports
AudioNahimic® Audio for Gamers 5.1 channel surround sound
Power Supply500W, ES Bronze
Dimensions (H x W x D)425.9mm x 205mm x 396.9mm / 16.77″ x 8.07″ x 15.63″
ColorStorm Grey


External Design

The design of the Lenovo Legion 5i (26L) gaming desktop is similar to most other PC cases from the outside. Vents are located on the front, top, back, and bottom of the system. As for the sides, there is a clean solid piece on one side and a tempered glass surface on the other.

The power button, headphone and microphone jacks, and two USB-A 3.2 Gen 1 ports are all located on the top of the Legion Tower 5i. The Lenovo Legion logo, an LED button, the rear exhaust vent for airflow, four expansion slots (two of which are occupied by the GPU), the power connector, and an I/O shield for the motherboard are all located on the case’s back. Unfortunately, unlike the majority of other power sources, this one lacks an on/off switch. Finally, the front of the case is entirely made up of air vents that let air circulate through the two 120mm fans. Lenovo’s logo is in the bottom right corner, while the Legion nameplate is in the top left corner and is aRGB-powered.

Lenovo Legion 5i
Lenovo Legion 5i front side with Legion logo lighting up.

The left side is made of tempered glass, which allows you to see your build and all of the insides. As previously said, the right side is a cable management cover, which looked fantastic. Finally, the bottom of the Tower 5i has four rubber feet and a dust filter to keep any dust out of your PC. However, I’m not sure why Lenovo chose to screw on the dust filter rather than allowing it to glide in and out of a track. By having it screwed on, it will take a bit more work to replace the filter when needing to do so.

I think the overall design is visually pleasing. It’s understated and lacking in gimmickry. My only minor quibble is the fact that the dust filter on the bottom is attached to the case using screws. But, hey, that’s just my take.

Internal Design

In terms of internals, the motherboard is mATX and black. Thank you, Lenovo, for not going with the standard green hue. In our review system, A stock cooler protects Intel’s 13th-generation Core i5-13400f CPU. A consideration here is that depending on the configuration, you will either receive a stock cooler or Lenovo’s new air cooler — the latter likely being better. Because the motherboard supports up to 32GB of RAM, you are not limited to only two DIMM slots. The GPU is located underneath the cooler and RAM slots. This bundle features Nvidia’s RTX 3060 12GB variant; however, you can upgrade to a 40-series card. Because it is a vanilla Nvidia GPU, don’t expect features that you would get from ASUS, MSI, ASRock, or other manufacturers. You’ll also notice the ARGB back exhaust fan, which dissipates heat from the PC. If you desire extra ventilation, you can install more fans at the top of the case. The front two fans and the back are all 120mm and all three support ARGB.

Lenovo Legion 5i Tempered Glass
Tempered glass to protect and show off internal components.

There are two M.2 slots available. One is currently in use, and the other is available next to the WiFi 6 M.2 slot, which is also already occupied. There are four SATA slots and one additional PCIe slot. This is a PCIe 3.0 x16 slot for individuals who want to install a sound or a capture card. A tray for hard and solid-state drives is located beneath the PSU shroud. The system does handle up to two 3.5″ hard disks if you want to add some extra storage.


Lenovo’s Legion 5i gaming PC is equipped with Windows 11, just like the majority of modern machines. Without getting into great depth about this operating system, which has been available for some time, it is an improvement over Windows 10 in that it includes DirectStorage which speeds up load times when utilizing compatible nVME SSDs, Auto HDR, and other features.

The system also comes pre-installed with some custom software to further amplify the Lenovo branding of the desktop, as with any Lenovo device. The Legion 5i gaming desktop comes with Lenovo Vantage preloaded, which will assist you in keeping everything updated. Legion Edge provides the ability to increase the clock speeds of the CPU or GPU, as well as a network boost option and Auto Close. There are additional options available as well, but some will only be accessible depending on the Legion 5i model you purchase.

Legion Arena is a straightforward software app that displays all of your installed games. Lighting allows you to create lighting effects profiles for your gaming PC. You may customize the interior lights, including the LED strips, CPU fan, rear fan, both front fans, and the Legion icon. Each light has its own effect, so you have a lot of alternatives.

The remaining pre-installed applications include Spotify, Xbox, Lenovo Now, McAfee, Nahimic (more on that later), and all Microsoft software.


Design aside, performance is what your most likely wondering about. What the specs are going to be like if you do decide to purchase this desktop? For this specific configuration, I will only be talking about what comes installed on this PC.

If you decide to fully configure the Legion 5i, it can be a powerhouse of a computer, but Lenovo offered us the entry-level model for those who might be interested in getting into PC gaming. This system, as configured, came with an Intel Core i5-13400F CPU with a total of 10 cores and 16 threads. The cores consist of four E-Cores and six P-Cores. The cores can operate at a maximum frequency of 3.30 GHz for E-Cores and 4.60 GHz for P-Cores. As mentioned above, this configuration does come with the stock cooler. Two 8GB DDR5 RAM modules totalling 16GB each are installed and are rated for a frequency of 4400MHz. A 512GB M.2 NVMe SSD and the NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3060 graphics card are also included.

Lenovo Legion 5i Full View
A full view of all the internal components.

Because I only have a 1080p monitor, I conducted benchmarks at this resolution with maximum settings and no DLSS. I also ran some custom settings for individuals who wished to play games at a higher frame rate.

FHD (avg)Custom FHD (avg)
Apex Legends100130-135
Call of Duty: Modern Warfare II70110-132
Call of Duty Warzone70-80126-136

As you can see, the Legion 5i performed splendidly when tested at maximum settings on an FHD monitor. It was much the same when I tried to attain higher framerates when I individually adjusted various settings for better performance, including lowering the graphics quality and turning off V-sync. Given that those are the games I primarily play, other triple-A or eSports titles may perform differently. Regardless, if you want to attempt games on the highest settings or customize them to your own, this gaming system runs just fine.

Unfortunately, I did run across a problem in which the RAM clock rates were stuck at 4400MHz on DIMMS two and four and 4000MHz on DIMMS one and three. I contacted Lenovo about this and was given several troubleshooting methods that did not work. In this setup, the RAM is set at 4400MHz although they didn’t all operate at the full speeds. Regardless, the RAM speeds were sufficient for multitasking. I assume this is due to Lenovo limiting the RAM speeds in the BIOS, so if you intend to overclock (XMP) the RAM sticks, you will be unable to do so.


SteelSeries’ Nahimin app comes preloaded for customers who want to improve the sound of their music, TV shows or movies, communication, or games. The program is quite straightforward to use. As you’re introduced to the audio section, you can modify the sound depending on what you’re doing. You can also alter the microphone settings, connect a Bluetooth speaker with Easy Sound, or turn the room into a surround sound environment. Sound Sharing is exactly what it sounds like. This option allows two individuals to listen to the same audio using Bluetooth, an audio jack, or USB.

I did utilize the application to adjust my audio experience while listening to music. I left the bass and treble on at six and four settings, respectively, while turning off Surround Sound, Volume Stabilizer, and voices. After experimenting with the equalizer settings, I decided that dynamic was the ideal setting. It slightly increased the bass, but it also improved the vocals and treble. The gaming option was convenient because it activated Surround Sound, allowing you to hear everything around you while increasing the vocals, bass, and treble.


Lenovo’s Tower 5i (26L) comes in a variety of configurations. Pricing ranges between $1299.99 (as tested) and $1649.99. These setups might benefit someone trying to get into PC gaming for the first time. The price range is reasonable for a budget to higher-end pre-built desktop. You should take full advantage of the sales as they happen as building your own with similar parts will come out to about the same price when these systems aren’t on sale.

Wrap Up

Is the Lenovo Legion 5i gaming desktop worth buying? Absolutely. Despite the minor flaws I came across, those wanting to purchase their first PC or upgrade to something more recent could benefit from Lenovo’s newest Legion 5i gaming PC. As we found out during our review testing, even with an RTX 3060 12GB GPU and a slightly lower-end 13th-generation Intel CPU, it performs far better than it sounds on paper.

Lenovo Legion Tower 5i












Nailed it

  • Appealing PC case
  • Latest Intel CPU
  • RTX 3060
  • ARGB lighting
  • Affordable price

Needs work

  • Locked BIOS
  • Stock cooler for lower end model
  • Incorrect RAM clock speeds

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