Lenovo IdeaPad Yoga 13 - Convertible Laptop (Part 3)

4/26/2013 6:00:50 PM


Although it is Lenovo’s fault to include some floating software on the Yoga 13, it is not as many as that you can find on other Windows 8 laptops like Toshiba U925t. An application, Lenovo Transition, is really useful: it allows you to identify applications which will automatically operate on the full-screen in the tablet mode. There are many presets and as you expect; they are all programs that you can use without the keyboard. They comprise of Windows Media Center, PowerPoint and MS Paint, with others apps. Obviously, you can set many different actions for many different programs, which means you can choose that it is only Windows Media Player to run on the full-screen, if that is all what you want.

The software

The software

Beside Lenovo Transition, you will find titles for Lenovo Support, Skype, Microsoft Office, AppUp store of Intel and Lenovo Cloud Storage, which are powered up by SugarSync. Windows 8 apps include eBay, Evernote and the music transmission service In terms of security, Lenovo has included the demo version for McAfee Security Advisor.

Like almost all of other consumer PCs, Yoga 13 has the warranty of one year.

Configuration options and competitors

Although yoga 13’s list price is over $1,110, it is starting with $1,000 at the moment on Lenovo’s website. It is the core i3 model, which also owns the 4 GB RAM and 128 GB SSD. Each configuration among three main configurations has 128 GB storage, except for one configuration has the core i5 processor (at the price of $1,100) and the other configurations are packed with the core i7 (at the price of $1,300). The i5 and i7 versions also have the 8GB RAM – two times more than what is provided in the basic core i3 version. All are accompanied with the integrated graphics cards Intel HD 4000. From what we can say, there is no option for a 256 GB storage sold on, so hopefully, you can live with 128 GB.

The Yoga 11 inch will be coming soon, although it has ARM chip and operates Windows RT instead of Windows 8. In other words, it belongs to a very different level from the Yoga 13, although it has the same form factor.

So far, we have compared Yoga 13 with Toshiba Satellite U925t and Dell XPS 12, because of good reason: both are ultrabooks that have the similar dimension and can be used in the tablet mode. However, the Yoga 13 does have flaw, we thought it is better than the U925t, which offers shorter battery life, and sliding design that can creates compromised typing experience. It also owns lower resolution display, regardless of the fact that it is more expensive.

It is Dell XPS 12 that is Yoga 13’s truly formidable competitor. Although it costs more (the basic $1,200 model), it owns the 1080p display with more pixel-dense, as well as the comfortable backlit keyboard. However, we have to admit that XPS 12’s rotating screen does not please us all like Yoga 13’s hinges. It’s up to your preference, you can be missing the capability of folding the screen into many different poses that Yoga can do. However, as we just said, when it comes to the tablet mode, XPS 12 is more comfortable to use, because the keyboard is tucked away. In terms of performance, both are similar in the battery life and speed in general, although the SSD disk of XPS 12 provides much higher reading speed.

It is Dell XPS 12 that is Yoga 13’s truly formidable competitor.

It is Dell XPS 12 that is Yoga 13’s truly formidable competitor.

Yoga 13 can also be compared with the dual- screen Asus TAICHI, although we admitted that we have not had any chance to play much with it more than dew minutes yet. The 13inch model, sold at the price of more than $1,300, is relatively expensive, even for a Windows 8 convertible. However, nobody would say that a machine with two 1080p screen is cheap.


Back to January, the first time that we saw Lenovo IdeaPad Yoga in CES, we claimed that was one of the most memorable moments at the exhibition. However, it is 10 months ago, and because of that gap, there is a bit inconsistent between our first impression and the reaction after one week of real usage. As what we found out, it is not a perfect product, with the flaky trackpad, relatively limited storage and normal typing experience (which is the strong point of Lenovo). Moreover, unless there is the optional sleeve to cover the keyboard, Yoga is very hard to use in the tablet mode, because your fingers will just keep pressing on those keys.

However, Yoga 13 is still an appealing model: we have never seen any other Windows 8 convertible with such flexible design, and the design is awesome: although we are still not satisfied with the keyboard, they hinge is sturdy and well designed. The whole machine feels thin and light, regardless of the fact that the touchscreen usually increase the weight. Although you rarely flip the screen around, this is a stable Ultrabook. Obviously, there are other Windows 8 PC with more definition screen and faster SSD, but it is about $20 more costly. Compared to the competitors, this is still a good choice. Regardless of the price, this choice is still so powerful. We just hope that Lenovo can quickly upgrade the trackpad. That is not beyond their ability, isn’t it?

Yoga 13 is still an appealing model.

Yoga 13 is still an appealing model.


·         Surprisingly flexible design

·         Slim and light for a convertible machine

·         The bright and lively IPS display


·         Unstable trackpad

·         The components of the keyboards create uncomfortable feeling


·         The transforming design of Yoga 13 turns it into the most attractive Windows 8 convertible that we have ever seen. It is not perfect, but still a good selection between Ultrabooks.


Lenovo IdeaPad Yoga 13 specifications

·         CPU: 3rd generation Intel Core i7-3537U; 3rd generation Intel Core i7-3517U; 3rd generation Intel Core i5-3317U; 3rd generation Intel Core i3-3217U

·         Operating system: Windows 8 Pro 64

·         Memory: 4 GB, 8 GB DDR3

·         Graphics: Intel HD Graphics  4000 (integrated)

·         Chipset: Mobile Intel QS77 Express

·         Dimension: 333.4x224.8x16.9 mm

·         Camera: 1.0 MP 720p HD integrated webcam

·         Display: 13.3 inches HD + IPS capacitive multi-touch display (1600 x 900)

·         Weight: 1.54 KG

·         I/O Ports: 1 USB 2.0; 1 USB 3.0; Combo jack: HDMI: 2-in-1 card reader (SD/MMC)

·         Storage: 128 GB DDR

·         Wireless connectivity: Lenovo 802.11 a/b/g/n wireless; Bluetooth 4.0

·         Keyboard: AccuType keyboard


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