Lenovo Yoga 900 evaluation: equal thin layout with fewer compromises

Lenovo Yoga 900 evaluation: equal thin layout with fewer compromises

Lenovo’s Yoga laptops infrequently want an advent at this point: The organisation‘s iconic 2-in-1s are sopopular that its competitors were copying them right and left. last year‘s version, the Yoga 3 seasoned,changed into mainly tremendous for the way thin and mild it become: simply 2.6 pounds and 1/2 an inch thick, and that became with a folding touchscreen, too. The hassle, we determined, changed into that as clean because it changed into to keep, that compact layout came with sizeable compromises, along with lackluster performance and mediocre battery existence. enter this yr‘s model, the new Yoga 900 ($1,199 and up). Like its predecessor, it has a thirteen-inch, 3,200 x 1,800 display and a slim build,however this time it claims faster performance, longer battery life and a sturdier hinge. it’s far, essentially, an improvement in nearly every manner.
summary
Lenovo’s most modern Yoga presents far fewer compromises than it did final year, with a skinny and lightdesign that’s matched through lengthy battery lifestyles and rapid overall performance. it is remarkableto see the company responding to person comments, but maybe next time it’s going to bestmusic the touchpad as well, and avoid shrinking down any of the keyboard buttons.
hardware

The Yoga 900 looks one-of-a-kind from the one that got here before it, however that is simplest due to the fact Lenovo has a clean brand. aside from that, the company stuck with its tried-and-authenticlayout. which means a magnesium-alloy case, available inside the ordinary silver, orange and goldshades. Lenovo also kept last year‘s show: a 13.3-inch, three,2 hundred x 1,800 IPS panel with three hundred nits of brightness. The “Watchband” hinge is lower back too, and as ever it’s miles what it sounds like: a mechanism designed to look links on a wristwatch.

i will depart it to you to decide if the bling is too much — if not anything else, we can agree that the hinge’sthin layout enables keep the pc first-rate and thin. it is also sturdier than ultimate yr‘s version. when Ireviewed the Yoga three seasoned a yr in the past, i used to be concerned to locate that the display screen made a slight creak when I folded it back. there is none of that here; rotating the show feels easyand controlled. no longer that the Yoga 3 seasoned ever broke on me, however all matters taken into consideration, i might as an alternative my $1,two hundred system now not sound like it’s about to snap.

The keyboard deck is in the main the equal, too. As before, the complete surface is blanketed by using a textured, rubbery fabric, with orange accents on the keys and touchpad. although the keyboard normallylooks the identical, it’s absolutely barely distinctive, with six rows this time in place of five. That greaterrow up pinnacle leaves room for devoted settings buttons, permitting you to regulate things like extentand brightness without having to maintain down the function key. unfortunately, though, a few of thepredominant buttons had been shrunken down, inclusive of the Tab, Caps Lock and right Shift keys. The Backspace button especially is so small that my finger regularly missed it altogether, hitting the Delete keyinside the upperproper nook as a substitute. it is a shame, due to the fact the buttons themselvessense distinctly robust, mainly thinking about how notably flat the keyboard is.

I had unique hassle with the touchpad, that is irritating due to the fact the trackpad on final yr‘s versionbecame initially finicky too; you’d think Lenovo could have gotten better at this. What follows looks like a compilation of each gripe i have had with certain home windows touchpads through the years: The cursordoes not constantly go wherein I need it to; right-clicking every now and then takes multiple attempts;and that i frequently determined myself by chance doing things like rearranging pinned browser tabs. Thescenario were given so awful that i found myself the usage of the touchscreen for hitting ship in Gmail and toggling IMs in Slack — matters that honestly were not designed to be executed with a finger.

the best information is that regardless of having a 50-percentage bigger battery and extra powerfulinternals (extra on that later), the Yoga 900 is nearly as thin and mild as its predecessor, at 2.8 pounds andzero.fifty nine inch thick. it is easy to carry in one hand and doesn’t crush my over-the-shoulder bag an excessive amount of. In truth, i’d pass to this point as to say that its lightness remains one of the thingsthat i really like fine about it. around the ones thin edges you’ll additionally find a accurate selection of ports, which includes USB three.0 sockets; a USB type-C socket taking into consideration video output; a4-in-1 reminiscence card reader; and a strength connector that doubles as a USB 2.zero port (yes, you may plug peripherals into it). sooner or later, the bottom facet is domestic to 2 audio system, which pump out serviceable sound, specifically in Tent Mode when they may be not muffled towards a flat floor.

overall performance and battery lifestyles
PCMARK7 PCMARK8 (innovative increased) 3DMARK11 3DMARK (SKY DIVER) ATTO (topREADS/WRITES)
Lenovo Yoga seasoned 900 (2.5GHz center i7-6500U, Intel HD 520) five,368 three,448
E2,707 / P1,581

three,161 556 MB/s / 511 MB/s
Lenovo Yoga three pro (1.1GHz Intel M-5Y70, Intel HD 5300) 4,699 N/A
E1,076 / P595 / X175

N/A 554 MB/s / 261 MB/s
Microsoft surface ebook (2.4GHz middle i5-6300U, Intel HD 520) 5,412 three,610
E2,758 / P1,578 / X429

three,623 1.6 GB/s / 571 MB/s
Microsoft surface e book (2.6GHz center i7-6600U, 1GB NVIDIA GeForce pix) 5,740 3,850
E4,122 / P2,696

6,191 1.55 GB/s / 608 MB/s
Lenovo LaVie Z (2.4GHz Intel core i7-5500U, Intel HD 5500) five,232 N/A
E2,001/ P1,122 / X310

N/A 555 MB/s / 245 MB/s
HP Spectre x360 (2015, 2.2GHz Intel middle i5-5200U, Intel HD 5500) 4,965 N/A
E1,667 / P932 / X265

N/A 555 MB/s / 270 MB/s
Dell XPS 13 (2015, 2.2GHz Intel core i5-5200U, Intel HD 5500) four,900 N/A
E2,114 / P1,199 / X330

N/A 515 MB/s / 455 MB/s
it is almost as though Lenovo examine all the ones reviews of the Yoga three seasoned that complained of lackluster overall performance. the new Yoga 900 most effective comes with one processor choice, and that processor is a newly released, 6thera center i7 chip. what is greater, it now begins with 8GB of RAM,although you can get it with a whopping sixteen gigs, like the version I tested. Oh, and at the same time as the Yoga collection has long had strongkingdom drives, the base storage is now 256GB, up from 128GB. not too shabby!

indeed, the Yoga 900 is rapid. I had no trouble juggling Slack, Skype, Spotify and Chrome with nine pinned tabs — a workload that routinely chokes the new 21.five-inch iMac with its 5,400RPM difficult pressure. Startup is also fast: about 15 seconds to the computer. The SSD, in the meantime, gets into the 500-megabyte-in keeping with2d range for each reads and writes (that last component is no small feat ondifferent machines). If whatever, I felt every now and then that the flaky touchpad and undersized Backspace key slowed me down, to the extent that they pressured me to be aware of what need to in any other case experience natural: typing and mousing. but the machine itself is speedy.

What I can not account for is the reality that even though the Yoga 900 feels speedy, its benchmarkrankings are nevertheless lower than one of the surface ebook units I tested; that model had the equalgraphics card, however half the RAM and a core i5 processor, not i7. i wonder, then, if the Yoga 900 might have been even faster with better tuning however then again, I did not sense like i was looking forvelocity in actualworld use.

BATTERY lifestyles

Lenovo Yoga pro 900 9:36
surface e-book (center i5, included pictures) thirteen:fifty four / three:20 (pill simplest)
MacBook Air (thirteen-inch, 2013) 12:51
HP Spectre x360 11:34
floor e book (core i7, discrete graphics) 11:31 / 3:02 (pill handiest)
Apple MacBook pro with Retina display (thirteen-inch, 2015) eleven:23
Chromebook Pixel (2015) 10:01
Microsoft floor three nine:eleven
Apple MacBook (2015) 7:47
Dell XPS 13 (2015) 7:36
Lenovo Yoga 3 pro 7:36
Lenovo LaVie Z 7:32
Microsoft surface seasoned three 7:08
Lenovo LaVie Z 360 6:54
Lenovo prices the Yoga 900’s 66Wh battery for 8 to nine hours of use. i might say that is a conservative estimate: even with the brightness constant at 65 percent and an HD video looping continuously, Inonetheless logged 9 hours and 36 minutes, a -hour boom over closing year‘s Yoga three seasoned.manifestly, had I stuck to greater modest brightness settings, and had I been using the machine greaterintermittently, I may want to have controlled even extra runtime.

inside the grand scheme of contemporary-day laptops, that is nevertheless now not an wonderfuldisplaying — the HP Spectre x360 can eke out 11 and a half of hours, and the surface ebook can managenearly 14 if you get it with integrated snap shots. however, the ones are heavier machines with room forbigger batteries. in comparison to other skinny and mild machines, just like the floor pro four and the Dell XPS 13 we reviewed earlier this year, the Yoga 900’s battery life is simply as good if not better.

Configuration options and the competition

Even the Yoga 900’s base specifications are quite good. For $1,199, you get a dualcore 2.5GHz core i7-6500U processor, 8GB of RAM, a 256GB strongnation pressure and, of route, that three,two hundred x 1,800 show. From there, you can stand up to 512GB of storage and up to 16GB of RAM. apart from that,even though, the processor, snap shots and display live the identical, and is the reason why the topend model is fairly close in fee ($1,399); there’s no need for tons of configuration alternatives, for the reason that entrylevel sku is already stacked.

whilst the Yoga 900 may appear expensive, then, you could additionally argue it is a good deal for themoney, considering the specifications, battery existence, show, length and weight, and the actualworldpace. Even the keyboard is at ease, that small Backspace key notwithstanding. That stated, itnevertheless faces some stiff opposition from almost all corners of the pc universe. there’s the Dell XPSthirteen touchscreen notebook ($800 and up) and HP’s Spectre x360 convertible ($900-plus), each of whichwere currently upgraded with 6th-gen middle processors. The Spectre x360 especially has the equal formfactor because the Yoga, but with even longer battery life and a extra comfortable keyboard and touchpad.it is for the ones motives that we gave the Spectre a good higher rating of 88.

Microsoft’s surface e-book also got an excellent higher rating than the Yoga 900. even though it is onlythe agency‘s first attempt at a proper pc, the firm genuinely were given most matters right, inclusive ofa premium yet exceptional design; high-quality-in-class battery lifestyles; rapid overall performancewith lots of configuration alternatives; and a amazing keyboard and trackpad. additionally, while youdetach the thirteen.five-inch display screen, the tablet element weighs just 1.6 kilos, making it even less complicated to apply as a slate than Lenovo’s providing. it is pen-enabled too, which the Yoga 900’sdisplay screen isn’t. The simplest component is that the surface book has really quick battery life in pillonly mode, whereas with the Lenovo, it is the equal 9-and-a-half-hour runtime both way.

There are different skinny-and-mild windows laptops, however they are now not as precise. As of this writing, Samsung and Acer have not refreshed their top class notebooks with the trendy Intel processors. Toshiba, meanwhile, has a pint-sized laptop with a 4K screen, however the ones more pixels imply the battery existence is worst in classaround five hours in our tests.

Wrap-up

The Yoga 900 is the pc Lenovo should have released last 12 months. it is notably thin and mild,however manages to offer fast performance and long battery lifestyles. it is also greater long lastingthan the 2014 edition — a reassuring factor while you‘re approximately to drop $1,200-plus on a pocket book. All advised, it clearly seems that Lenovo listened to its clients (and reviewers), and the product ishigher for it. in case you‘re studying this, even though, Lenovo, i’d wish that subsequent year‘sobserve-up has a redesigned keyboard and not using a shrunken buttons, and that the touchpad is morereliable. then you‘d have a real winner on your hands.