The Lenovo Yoga 7i ($999 to start) is a curious proposition in 2023.
It’s a 2-in-1 touchscreen-equipped device with a nice keyboard that feels meant to be folded and toted, but it weighs four and a half pounds, and sports a massive 16-inch display.
Our Lenovo Yoga 7i (2023) review unit also offers great battery life, but weak performance for such a large machine. It’s relatively inexpensive — but at what cost?
As this Lenovo Yoga 7i (2023) review will show, the 16-inch Yoga 7i is a solid 16-inch Windows laptop that’s priced to move, but it can’t compete with the best laptops or even the best 2-in-1 laptops.
Lenovo Yoga 7i (2023) review: Specs
|Row 0 – Cell 0
|Lenovo Yoga 7i (2023) as reviewed
|Intel Core i7-1355U
|Intel Iris Xe integrated graphics
|2x USB-C, 2x USB-A, HDMI 1.4, microSD card reader, 3.5mm audio jack
|14.25 x 9.84 x 0.7 inches
Lenovo Yoga 7i (2023) review: Price and configurations
The Lenovo Yoga 7i (2023) variant I reviewed can be purchased for $999.99 (on sale for $649.99, at time of writing) on Lenovo’s website, and pairs an Intel Core i7-1355U CPU with 16GB of RAM and a 512GB M.2 SSD. The 16-inch display offers a 1,920 by 1,200-pixel resolution, and the machine runs on Windows 11 Home.
The cheapest laptop in the current Yoga 7i lineup starts at $752.25, which cuts your RAM down to 8GB and swaps to a Core 15-1335U CPU. The highest SKU will set you back $1,339.99, packs a Core i7-1360P CPU and 1TB of storage, bumps the display’s resolution up to 2,560 x 1,600, and is bundled with a Lenovo Digital Pen.
Lenovo Yoga 7i (2023) review: Design
- Subtle, attractive design
- Not light
The Yoga 7i is plain, without being unsightly. While lacking the premium feel of the Lenovo Yoga 9i Gen 8, or the business-savvy of the ThinkPad X1 Yoga Gen 8, it still feels familiar, especially once you you lift the lid and glance down on the spacious keyboard.
The Yoga lineup’s design language has shifted subtly over the years, but remains centered around the 2-in-1 lineup’s flexible hinge. The spate of convertible-contenders means its design is less novel than it once was, but that’s okay.
The «Storm Grey» aluminum chassis will blend right in at your local cubicle farm or coffee shop, bereft of aesthetic touches or flourishes beyond the Lenovo branding and stylized «YOGA» stamp on the upper left corner of the lid.
The laptop measures 14.25 by 9.84 by 0.66 inches, and weighs in at 4.5 pounds—not light, but not exactly overbearing for a machine with a 16-inch display.
Lenovo Yoga 7i (2023) review: Display
- Dull but serviceable display
- Touchscreen feels responsive
In practice, while I wouldn’t rely on this display for serious photo work, it’s perfectly adequate for streaming HD video, browsing the web, and day to day tasks. Colors remained true (relatively) when viewed off-axis, so you can read and browse with the machine folded up in your arms like a tablet, without hampering the experience.
When we put it through our testing lab the Yoga 7i’s 1,920-by-1,20 pixel display reproduced 67.8% of the sRGB color spectrum. 100% accuracy, or as close to that as possible, is ideal. In this case, the colors you see on screen might appear a little duller or flatter than you’d like, as some color clarity is lost.
We measured an average of 240 nits of brightness across the display. Laptops I’ve checked out recently have been trending far brighter —Acer’s Spin 5 at 480 nits, or Acer’s Swift X 16-inch at 405 nits, for example. What’s «bright enough» could be a subjective metric, but I often found myself staring back at my reflection when using the machine outdoors.
Finally, there’s the touchscreen: not much to say on that front. It’s nice and responsive, which makes for a satisfying experience when you’ve folded the machine up and are relying on touch.
Lenovo Yoga 7i (2023) review: Ports
- Good port array includes USB-C, USB-A, HDMI out and microSD card reader
- Right-mounted power button easy to hit by accident
You get a decent array of ports on the Lenovo Yoga 7i (2023). The pair of USB-C ports on the left are joined by an HDMI port and a 3.5mm audio jack.
On the right, you’ll find a pair of USB 3.2 ports, joined by a microSD card reader and the power button. As ever, I’d like to see a pair of USB-C ports on either side to maximize my charging flexibility, but this is a fair complement overall.
I should note that the power button’s placement is a bit problematic: I kept accidently pressing it and putting the machine to sleep when moving it around.
Lenovo Yoga 7i (2023) review: Keyboard & touchpad
- Spacious, comfy keyboard with disconcertingly small number pad
- Intuitive, responsive touchpad
I’ve waxed at length at Lenovo’s keyboard pedigree, and the Yoga 7i sticks to the mold — mostly. The keys are wide and spacious, generous with the travel distance and making for a comfortable typing experience. But the full-sized keyboard is joined by a number pad.
As someone who absolutely loves number pads this should be a win, and it is, but I’ve found myself making an uncharacteristically frequent number of typos; my hands can’t seem to get used to being just a little to the left, off center from the display.
The number pad is a little on the narrow side, so as not to sully the general typing experience. That’s a worthy compromise as I’ll use the alpha far more often than the numeric, but does mean I can’t quite touch-type my way across the numpad just yet. A fingerprint reader sits just below the number pad, offering a biometric option for logins and the like if you’d rather not relay on passwords or facial recognition.
The touchpad is slick and responsive, adroitly translating my multi-finger swipes into gestures and ignoring errant palms. It’s also fairly roomy, at 5.3 by 3.2 inches; I’ve whinged at length about the Lenovo ThinkPad nub and its deleterious effect1 on touchpad dimensions, so it’s bittersweet to see what could be.
Lenovo Yoga 7i (2023) review: Audio
- Loud, crisp speakers
- No bass to speak of
The speaker grille sits above the keyboard of the Lenovo Yoga 7i (2023), firing clear, crisp audio that’s a little flat out of the box, but shows its versatility if you fire up the Dolby Access app and do a bit of tweaking. I quickly found a preset that allowed me to appreciate the strumming bass lines throughout Aesop Rock’s Pigeonometry, and customizable equalizer presets will let those with finer ears tweak things to their liking.
The speakers are loud, filling a space with sound without becoming excessively distorted or tinny. When the Yoga 7i is in «tent» mode the audio is necessarily duller, as the speakers are firing away from you. While not a bad thing, it’s one of the reasons I’ve never really gravitated towards watching videos and the like in anything but a «normal» orientation.
Lenovo Yoga 7i (2023) review: Performance
- Disappointing performance
- Fine for work and browsing the web, but not great for gaming
Our Lenovo Yoga 7i (2023) review unit caused me no headaches in day-to-day use, but it’s not great for gaming and it didn’t acquit itself superbly in our testing lab.
Notably, our review unit with its Intel Core i7-1355U CPU and 16GB of RAM earned a score of 6,217 on the Geekbench 5.5 Multicore benchmark test. That’s not an inspiring result: the Samsung Galaxy Book 2 Pro 360 scored 9,043, while Acer’s Spin 5 scored 10,040, and Acer’s Swift X 16-inch scored 10,340.
This might be a little befuddling, as all 4 machines are equipped with 16GB of RAM and Intel Core i7 processors (all but the Yoga 7i are powered by Intel’s Core i7-1260P). The «U» in Core i7-1355U is key here; as part of Intel’s «power efficient» lineup, you’re ostensibly sacrificing performance for battery life. It’s cheaper, too.
On our Handbrake test, which consists of transcoding a 4K video clip down to 1080p, the Yoga 7i took 8 minutes and 28 seconds; the Spin 5 took 6 minutes and 39 seconds, the Swift X 16-inch took 7 minutes and 5 seconds, and the Galaxy Book 2 Pro 360 took 9 minutes and 34 seconds.
That’s a better showing, and makes sense, as the 512GB M.2 SSD can do a bit more of the heavy lifting. To that end, the Yoga 7i completed our 25GB file transfer test in 19.8 seconds, for an effective transfer rate of 1.35GB per second. That’s just shy of the Acer Spin 5’s 1.39GB per second, and head of the Acer Swift 16-inch’s 1.23GB per second. Gaming, as anticipated, isn’t all that feasible. We saw an average of 26 frames per second in Civilization VI: Gathering Storm.
Looking beyond the benchmarks paints a rosier picture. The hardware is more than capable of tackling the average work day, with enough RAM and latent CPU performance to tackle your average Office suite and all the web has to offer. If your use case doesn’t involve gaming or CPU-intensive workloads, this machine will meet your needs.
Lenovo Yoga 7i (2023) review: Battery life & heat
- 12 hours and 3 minutes of tested battery life is pretty good
Our automated battery test consists of setting the display’s brightness to 150 nits, and browsing the web while on Wi-Fi until the battery dies. The Yoga 7i kept on chugging for 12 hours and 3 minutes — a respectable result. That’s a few minutes longer than the Samsung Galaxy Book 2 Pro 360(our current favorite 2-in-1), which lasted for 11 hours and 59 minutes, while trailing behind the Acer Spin 5’s 12 hours and 31 minutes.
|Lenovo Yoga 7i (2023)
|Samsung Galaxy Book 2 Pro 360
|Acer Spin 5
|Surface Laptop Studio 2
|MacBook Pro 14-inch M2 Pro
|MacBook Pro 14-inch M2 Max
|Acer Swift 5
|Dell XPS 15 OLED (2023)
|Dell XPS 15
|Samsung Galaxy Book 3 Ultra
|MacBook Pro 14-inch M1 Pro
|MacBook Pro 13-inch M2
|HP Dragonfly Pro
|LG Gram 17 Pro (2023)
|Lenovo Yoga 9i Gen 8
Realistically, I saw closer to seven and a half hours of life under more strenuous conditions: streaming music, writing, and browsing the web with the brightness cranked up to the maximum. That being said, this is more than enough to make it through even a strenuous workday, without worrying about hunting down a charger.
The fans spun to life once during my time with the machine: I was making a sandwich and it was closed, on the counter, so my guess is that something was updating in the background. Things otherwise remained comfortably cool throughout my time with it. The underside of the machine peaked at 87.5 degrees Fahrenheit on our heat test, which consists of streaming an HD video for 15 minutes and measuring temperatures with a heat gun.
Lenovo Yoga 7i (2023) review: Webcam
- 1080p webcam is serviceable but not great
- Comes w/ privacy shutter and IR camera that supports Windows Hello
The Lenovo Yoga 7i (2023)’s 1080p webcam is serviceable, but there are some caveats you should know about.
The video capture is a bit noisy in darker spaces, while blowing out entirely in strong, direct lighting. In the right environment you’ll have be able to have a perfectly fine conference call or video chat, but don’t expect the crisp quality you’re used to out of your smartphone, or with a dedicated webcam.
The camera does support Windows Hello’s facial recognition for logins and the like, and there’s a physical privacy shutter, for that extra layer of security.
Lenovo Yoga 7i (2023) review: Software
- Little annoying bloatware beyond McAfee
- Lenovo Vantage is the most useful bit of company software
I literally flinched when I accidently clicked the McAfee LiveSafe logo on the taskbar, and spent the next 20 or so minutes frustratedly excising it from the machine. Beyond that, there isn’t too much cruft to sift through. Lenovo’s Vantage is a hub of sorts to view the sort of diagnostic info you generally have to search through Windows’ settings for.
Lenovo Voice aims to be a sort of voice assistant, but I spent more time trying to phrase commands in form it would understand than actually getting anything useful out of it. The aforementioned Dolby Access is the most useful of the preinstalled bunch as it gives you some fine control over the built-in speakers, and offers a peek at what the machine’s Dolby Atmos and Dolby Vision equipped speakers and display are technically capable of, if you can find the right media.
Lenovo Yoga 7i (2023) review: Verdict
While the Lenovo Yoga 7i fits the budget niche, it feels like a departure from the usual Yoga fare.
A folding, convertible 2-in-1 laptop makes more sense in a smaller size because a 16-inch tablet feels clumsy, even in my large hands. If you’re going to deal with the unwieldy weight of a 16-inch machine, I feel like it should be packing hardware to match that scale.
If you like the Yoga line, conceptually, and need something with a 16-inch screen, I’d advise looking further up the lineup: the highest end Yoga 7i sports a Core i7-1360P processor, which will get you a bit more mileage. Better still, take a look at the 14-inch Lenovo Yoga 9i Gen 8 for a premium Yoga experience in a size that makes a little more sense.