Tue. Oct 15th, 2019

Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Yoga Gen four evaluation: So steel

Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Yoga Gen four evaluation: So steel

“The ThinkPad X1 Yoga Gen four is the ThinkPad you already know and love with a dose of chilly, exhausting steel.”

  • Distinctive aesthetic for a ThinkPad
  • Superior construct high quality
  • Beautiful 4K show with HDR
  • Clear audio from audio system
  • 4K show means lackluster battery life
  • Earlier-gen efficiency

No, your eyes aren’t deceiving you. That svelte, gunmetal grey laptop computer with the all-aluminum chassis really is a ThinkPad. Lenovo took a tough flip away from the basic ThinkPad feel and appear with the X1 Yoga Gen four to attraction to a market that’s wider than the ThinkPad fanbase.

This configuration is available in at a really premium $1,880, which got here with each a 4K show and an Eighth-gen Core i7 with vPro

The ThinkPad X1 Yoga stands alone in its aesthetic, however does it retain the ThinkPad soul? That’s what I used to be decided to search out out.

That mushy contact is gone, changed by chilly, exhausting steel

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Mark Coppock / Digital Tendencies

The ThinkPad line has for years now maintained a sure easily-recognized design philosophy, particularly the X1 fashions which have used magnesium alloy and carbon fiber of their chassis. This gave them loads of energy and sturdiness, with solely a touch of flexing. The ThinkPad X1 Carbon, for instance, had a lid that gave in a bit to flexing below much less strain than I wish to see.

The ThinkPad X1 Yoga, then again, feels extra strong in hand. The lid is far more inflexible, and neither the keyboard deck nor the chassis backside reveals any flexing with out unreasonable strain. This didn’t shock me — Lenovo’s different all-aluminum laptops are equally rock-solid, with the Yoga C930 being the standard-bearer.

On the identical time, I admit to lacking the ThinkPad soft-touch really feel. The ThinkPad X1 Yoga is harsher and colder, presenting a compromise between construct high quality and pure consolation.

So, how does it look? Merely put, the ThinkPad x1 Yoga is a conservatively enticing laptop computer. Should you’re trying intently on the lid, you’ll observe the ThinkPad brand with the blinking pink dot and the X1 brand within the reverse nook, however from a distance, the ThinkPad X1 Yoga gained’t be mistaken for one in all its siblings. I just like the 2-in-1’s design, however admit that it doesn’t give off the identical aura as different ThinkPads. Once more, the ThinkPad X1 Carbon is a extra basic instance of the road, and I desire its aesthetic.

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Mark Coppock / Digital Tendencies

Whether or not you want the brand new feel and appear or not, one factor is indeniable: The brand new X1 Yoga is smaller than the final model thanks partly to smaller bezels. It’s over an inch much less vast, half an inch much less deep, and zero.59 inches thick versus zero.67 inches. The result’s a laptop computer that’s a bit lighter at 2.99 kilos versus three.08 pound, regardless of being constructed of heavier steel.

That doesn’t make the X1 Yoga an awesome possibility in pill mode — practically three kilos is simply an excessive amount of — nevertheless it’s very good as a clamshell laptop computer and in media mode for watching films. And that’s an awesome expertise, which we’ll get to in a bit.

Being thinner does imply the 2-in-1 misplaced out within the connectivity division. In reality, connectivity mimics the X1 Carbon, with two USB-C three.1 ports. Alongside the left-hand aspect, you’ll discover two USB-C ports with Thunderbolt three help (and anti-fry safety to protect in opposition to unhealthy chargers). One of many ports sits subsequent to an Ethernet and proprietary docking extension (although you’ll want to purchase the suitable dongle, alas). There’s additionally a USB-A three.1 Gen 1 port, a full-size HDMI 1.4b port, and an audio jack.

On the right-hand aspect, there’s a second USB-A three.1 port, a Kensington lock port, and the slide-out pen slot. Wi-fi connectivity is offered by an Intel Wi-fi-AC 9560 chip with 802.11ac Wi-Fi and Bluetooth 5.zero. A mobile connection is non-compulsory.

The identical stunning show as its cousin

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Mark Coppock / Digital Tendencies

Identical to the X1 Carbon, the X1 Yoga has a really good 14-inch 4K UHD show possibility — together with the X1 Carbon, a primary for ThinkPads with 14-inch shows. Each laptops are clearly utilizing the identical panel, with my colorimeter giving comparable outcomes throughout the board. The X1 Yoga’s show is shiny at 436 nits and has a wider than common coloration gamut at 100 % sRGB and 82 % AdobeRGB (the everyday premium show is available in at 72 %). The colours aren’t terribly correct at simply 2.59 (1.zero or much less is great), and distinction is common at 870:1 (1,000:1 is our most popular premium cutoff).

However set all of that apart. Until you’re a inventive skilled who calls for completely correct colours (through which case, decide up the ThinkPad X1 Excessive), you’ll love this show. That’s very true when you’re carry on flipping the X1 Yoga into media mode.

Hearth up Netflix and binge away with glorious Dolby Imaginative and prescient HDR400. Simply don’t toggle the “Play HDR video games and apps” swap within the Show settings otherwise you’ll have a diminished expertise total. Even with that swap toggled off (really, particularly with that swap toggled off), you’ll be capable of make out even the darkest scenes in reveals like Netflix’s Sabrina the Teenage Witch. That’s my benchmark for the way effectively a laptop computer can stream HDR, and solely an OLED display screen just like the one on the HP Spectre x360 15 provided a greater expertise.

Toss in the identical audio upgrades as I loved within the X1 Carbon, and the X1 Yoga rounds out as a wonderful Netflix binging machine. With 4 Dolby Atmos audio system, together with two tweeters firing up from simply beneath the show and two woofers firing down beneath the chassis, the X1 Yoga pumps out superior sound. It’s greater than adequate for informal music, TV, and films that you simply gained’t really feel your self hankering for a pair of headphones — and that’s true even in media mode, the place the audio system are inverted.

The standard ThinkPad enter goodness, with some extras

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Mark Coppock / Digital Tendencies

As soon as once more, the X1 Carbon serves as a template for the X1 Yoga. As with the clamshell, Lenovo’s 2-in-1 additionally suffers from a keyboard with barely much less journey (1.5mm vs 1.8mm) than we’re used to seeing with the superb ThinkPad keyboard. That’s not a unhealthy factor, provided that many thin-and-light laptops have keys with far much less journey than 1.5mm, however when you transfer from an older ThinkPad to the X1 Yoga you’ll discover the distinction. It’s nonetheless a exact mechanism that contact typists will love, nevertheless it’s not fairly the identical.

The touchpad is a Microsoft Precision model and helps all the same old Home windows 10 gestures, as common. The pink TrackPoint nubbin is correct there in the course of the keyboard the place it belongs, with the compulsory buttons that hog a bit house from the touchpad. And as a 2-in-1, the X1 Yoga sports activities a really responsive contact show with the superb — albeit small — Lenovo lively pen that slides into its port to cost.

Home windows 10 Hiya is well-supported. There’s an infrared digital camera up prime for facial recognition, which is disabled whenever you use the ThinkShutter to bodily cowl the webcam. For these events, there’s additionally a fingerprint reader with match-in-sensor know-how for further safety. Each strategies had been dependable for logging in throughout my testing.

Efficiency is restricted, in what’s trying like a development

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Mark Coppock / Digital Tendencies

I don’t need this evaluation to show right into a comparability between the X1 Yoga and the X1 Carbon, however there are too many similarities to disregard. Trying on the 2-in-1’s efficiency, I see very comparable outcomes to the clamshell. Particularly, this laptop computer additionally benchmarks a bit slower than common.

Within the artificial GeekBench benchmark, the X1 Yoga scored four,841 on the single-core check (over 5,000 is anticipated with this CPU) and 13,163 on the multi-core check (over 15,000 is typical). Then, in our extra real-world check, encoding a 420MB video as H.265, the X1 Yoga took slightly below 5 minutes. That’s just a few seconds slower than the X1 Carbon and effectively behind the Dell Latitude 7400 2-in-1, which took simply over 4 minutes.

The X1 Yoga was lots quick in my testing, however then once more aside from benchmarking, I don’t push the CPU fairly often. I used the 2-in-1 in my common workflow and it was lots fast. I doubt that the everyday consumer would disagree, and when you use the Home windows 10 slider to maneuver to “Greatest Efficiency” then there’s a better uptick in efficiency than I’m used to seeing. Thermals had been effectively below management, with the fan not often spinning up and the chassis remaining comparatively cool to the contact. If that’s the trade-off Lenovo has made — cool and quiet operation until you crank up the facility — then I help the choice.

Notice that the X1 Yoga will acquire Intel’s 10th-gen CPUs in just a few months, particularly the Comet Lake variations. These ought to present a pleasant improve in processor velocity over the Eighth-gen CPU on this model, particularly the top-end six-core mannequin. With that, the X1 Yoga ought to be capable of churn by means of demanding duties like video enhancing a bit quicker.

Oh, by the way in which: Don’t even trouble gaming on this laptop computer. It’s not well worth the hassle, given the Intel UHD 620 built-in graphics. Had Lenovo opted for Intel’s Ice Lake CPU with its enhanced Iris Plus graphics, that is perhaps totally different, however future consumers must dwell with quicker CPU efficiency as an alternative.

That 4K show is a battery killer

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Mark Coppock / Digital Tendencies

No shock right here: Equip a laptop computer with a 4K show, and battery life takes a dive. That’s actually the case with the X1 Yoga, simply because it was with — you guessed it — the X1 Carbon. The X1 Yoga additionally has only a 51 watt-hour battery, which isn’t quite a bit given the specs. That’s down from 54 watt-hours within the earlier model whose highest decision show possibility was 1440p.

In our video looping check, the X1 Yoga lasted over seven hours, whereas it died after six and a half hours in our net looking check. Meaning you’ll want your energy brick for a full work day, however that’s not horrible for a 4K laptop computer.

1080p laptops final quite a bit longer than that. I additionally examined the low-power Full HD model of the X1 Yoga with a Core i5, and it roughly doubled battery life throughout the board. If making it by means of a full working day on a cost is a requirement, you’ll need to think about Full HD as an alternative.

Our take

The X1 Yoga is a welcome replace to the ThinkPad line, including a brand new aesthetic and design philosophy because of its all-aluminum development. It’s quick, feels nice in hand, and gives some superior show choices.

Is there a greater various?

Enterprise-class laptops abound, together with some glorious 2-in-1s, giving the X1 Yoga some extreme competitors. And admittedly, I desire the Dell Latitude 7400 2-in-1 with its extra svelte design and equally good construct high quality. And when you don’t want a 14-inch show, then Dell’s up to date XPS 13 2-in-1 is a compelling possibility.

Take a look at our favourite laptops of 2019 for extra choices.

How lengthy will it final?

The X1 Yoga feels lots strong to final for a few years, actually so long as you’ll need to preserve utilizing it. As at all times, we’d desire a guaranty that stretched longer than a 12 months, particularly for a business-class laptop computer on this worth vary. The one part that’s the slightest bit dated is the CPU, and if that issues, then you definitely’ll need to look forward to the refresh to 10th-gen CPUs.

Do you have to purchase it?

Sure. Should you’ve been craving that ThinkPad sturdiness and sophistication with out the plasticky physique, the ThinkPad X1 Yoga is for you.

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