Our Review: Lenovo Yoga 730
The 2-in-1 laptop is a rapidly growing segment of the PC market, and the Lenovo Yoga 730 takes another seat(not a first-class one) in this moving train with a convertible that is impressive much.
No stranger to the 2-in-1 industry, Lenovo designs this laptop with a resignation that you can only get so much from a convertible without making compromises in its weight, processor power, and battery capacity.
Our review unit comes with a core i5-8250u CPU, the Intel UHD Graphics card, and a Full HD display, a match made in conservative laptop heaven.
The speakers and the Lenovo 2 pen will need to be relocated, the GPU needs improvement, and the chin bezels need trimming, and maybe then, we could place it at the top of the shelf.
Design and Appearance
It is in the name, the Lenovo Yoga 730, It transforms from clamshell to tent shape, and then goes full circle to become a tablet. It is a member of the exclusive convertible PC club, which puts 360-degree flexibility as the ultimate selection criteria.
The chassis of the Lenovo Yoga 730 bears resemblance to a slab of aluminum, machined and milled to a robust build. And the screen does not wriggle in writhing motions when it is flipped, which is helped in no small part by the sturdiness and flexibility of the hinges that hold it in place.
At 2.6lbs this laptop weighs in moderately for a 2-in-1, although it becomes somewhat unwieldy when it is used in tablet mode, and that is mostly as a result of its generous 15.6″ screen size. The edges can do with a little less sharpness though.
Ports and connections
Lenovo does not go out of the ordinary with its ports, in fact, they commit a faux pas of sorts along the way. Barring the Thunderbolt 3, the port assembly is pretty basic. Two USB-A slots, two USB 3.0 ports, and an HDMI 2.0 connector for video output line the edges of this laptop.
The ports are placed very close to each other, and plugging into one may block the face of the other on the same edge, no other accessory exemplifies this anomaly as much as the stylus. When this pen is tethered to a USB 3.0 port, its sprawling length stretches across the face of other ports sited across that edge, inadvertently rendering them incapacitated.
The Lenovo Yoga 730 comes in a choice of a 13″ screen or a 15.6″ screen, and configurations of Full HD or Ultra HD resolution.
The former is chosen for this review, it is the base model, but it is no less impressive.
With its excellent viewing angles and visual clarity, the display paints the same picture of quality and acuity throughout its 360° range of rotation.
Unfortunately, the display panel comes with a chunky bottom bezel, and a glossiness for all the configurations on offer. The visibility of the screen is reduced in places exposed to direct sunlight, and that is despite the best efforts of the anti-glare coating to ameliorate this fix. And for people who consider the stylus as overkill, fingerprints will also stick to the surface of this screen.
Audio is a problem area for most 2-in-1 devices, the Yoga 730 inclusive, and the reason is not rocket science. For want of sufficient space, speakers are sometimes placed at the laptops’ undercarriage, this is slightly convenient until you flip your convertible into a tablet, and then the speakers seem to disappear. Audio from this device is loud enough, as long as you stay within an earshot that is about the size of your bedroom. The bass is fair but not sufficient, and the ranges seem to go out of tune on occasions.
Keyboard and Input Devices
The keyboard features keys with short travel length and springy feedback, it is not a good place to start with if you’re still mastering the art of typing. In dim places, the view is impressive, as the keyboard area glows with a backlight that is accentuated by the black color of the keys.
The touchpad area has an ample footprint, with an aspect ratio that is anything but similar to that of the display. As it is a Microsoft precision touchpad, it can offer a speedy response to all windows 10 gestures.
For the touch screen, a stylus pen comes in handy, and the Lenovo Active Pen 2 is a good fit. While tapping the screen with this pen in tablet mode, a distinct clicking sound that seeks to imitate the tactile response of the traditional keyboard can be heard.
Intel’s UHD Graphics 630 is not a big hit with users that do heavy gaming or content creation. It is an upgrade on its predecessor, the Intel HD, but it is still steps below contemporary Nvidia offerings like the MX 150 or the MX 250. It will only give you respectable performance if you can dial down on its power. On the flip side, this integrated GPU has a 15Wh power draw, this is good news for your battery, especially for the Yoga 730 whose battery is not even remotely close to a decent one. To put things into perspective, this laptop can take on a lot of moderate graphics-demanding tasks but not graphics-intensive ones.
The Yoga 730 is not a terrific gaming laptop, but it is not terrible at it either. It is limited to the integrated Intel UHD 620; with the not too impressive 1.15Ghz clock speed of its Core processor. This laptop can comfortably handle some gaming, at frame rates mostly between 50-80 fps and at 1080p resolution. That is the benchmark standard for most games on the low-medium spectrum. Games like Fortnite and Rocket League can be smoothly run on this laptop. Others like Far Cry, Battle Field, and The Witcher might be too much for asking unless you tone down on your brightness, resolution, and graphics settings.
Noise and Heat Emission
The fans of this laptop can be impatient at times, they fire off in response to the slightest processor-induced provocation. However, their whirring sound is mostly not loud enough to become a concern. The processor activity can create a sprinkling of hotspots at times, but the cooling system employed here is pretty much wired to keep them at bay. The grills on the bottom suck in fresh air and then eject it away from the user and through two fans sited at the laptops’ back-edge.
The Yoga 730 is a 2-in-1 laptop, and that says a lot about battery power. In trying to reduce the bulk, Lenovo might have compromised with their battery. To compensate for that drawback, the Yoga 730 now supports Lenovo’s Rapid Charge technology. That implies that you can add two hours of operation for only 15-minutes of charging, that is as impressive as they come.
The Intel Core i5-8250U is a decent CPU, pairing it with 8GB of RAM and 256GB SSD will only make it good enough for normal operation. It is also a quad-core processor with a not-too-great base speed of 1.6GHz.
This laptop is capable of heavily multitasking without slowing down, as long as you don’t go full blast on all the performance settings concerned. It can comfortably handle a barrage of pressure from a ton of open tabs in Google Chrome, simultaneously running with video playback at Full HD. This may seem to be nothing out of the extraordinary, but it is not to be taken for granted.
In summary, the Yoga 730 is a pretty decent laptop, despite all the inevitable compromises that come with building a 2-in-1.
Handling this laptop can be quite a handful, especially in tablet mode, but it is still fairly sized for a convertible. The battery is underwhelming, to say the least, and the thin bezels and port layout leave much to be desired. But all of these shortcomings do little to detract from the fact that this is a generally impressive showing for a device of its design.
8GB DDR4 RAM
256GB PCIe SSD
Intel UHD Graphics 620
15.6 inches 1920×1080