Lenovo Yoga 730 (15″) review – born to make the artists happy
We were just able to get our hands on the Lenovo Yoga 730 (15″). While it was introduced more than half a year ago, it still represents a unique niche of devices aimed to boost your creative productivity. It balances on the thin line between the 8th gen ULV Intel CPUs and GeForce GTX 1050 with up to 4GB GDDR5 memory.
Adding a gaming-grade GPU to a convertible laptop is always going to improve its portfolio. Moreover, you can choose between a 1080p or 4K display. Both are IPS panels but we suggest that, no matter how appetizing it sounds, stay away from the 4K screen. Up until now, Windows does not have adequate scaling for this resolution at 15.6 inches and in fact, the 1080p screen is not that bad either.
As a true 2-in-1 device, the Yoga 730 (15″) has a touch screen and Lenovo were kind enough to supply its users with a stylus inside the box (Lenovo Active Pen 2), unlike the ASUS ZenBook Flip 15 (UX561UD). We like when manufacturers think about their clients.
You can check the prices and configurations in our Specs System: https://laptopmedia.com/series/lenovo-yoga-730-15/
Lenovo Yoga 730 15
- Intel Core i5-8265U
- Intel UHD Graphics 620
- 12GB RAM
- 256GB SSD
Lenovo Yoga 730 (15") technical specifications table
What’s in the box?
Lenovo Yoga 730 (15″) comes in a pretty bulky box. The first thing you see when you open the colorful box is the laptop itself. Ten there is a cardboard lid to be opened, which unveils two smaller boxes. One of them is dedicated for the Active Pen 2 and the batteries for it, while the other contains all the paperwork plus the 90W charger.
Design and construction
We can’t miss noting that the Yoga 730 (15″) is a super sleek notebook. From the outside it looks like an enlarged Yoga 730 (13″). Its outer shell is made of anodized aluminum. This gives the surface a matte even texture. It weighs 1.89 kg (4.2 lbs) and is just about 17mm thin. This makes it both thinner and lighter than the ZenBook Flip 15 UX561UD.
Usually, when you get a 2-in-1 laptop you have to settle with the fact that you are going to need two hands to open the lid. However, this is not the case with this laptop. You can easily push it open with a single finger. On the contrary, there is a slight disadvantage in that – the screen is not very stable when you are drawing on it or just taping it in an upward position. However, the problem doesn’t occur when you use it in a tent or tablet mode.
Here is the place to say that the touch screen of this device is actually very adequate. Not only it blazes through the menu but it is super responsive. The Lenovo Active Pen 2 has 4096 levels of pressure sensitivity and is seamless to use – just put the battery inside and you are ready to go. Artists are going to like this!
However, writers are not… The keyboard itself has a very short travel, and while the letter keys have some tactile feedback, keys like the space bar feel like foam. No feedback at all. At least they have relatively good spacing between them. Moreover, no NumPad keys here as well. We feel that it’s becoming something like the 3.5mm jack on the smartphones…
On the bright side, we have a super responsive touchpad. Certainly, Lenovo has nailed the touch input devices on this notebook. A little bit on the right of the touchpad is located the fingerprint reader, which works relatively quickly – better than the EliteBook 1050 G1, but not as fast as Dell’s Inspiron 15 7580.
On the bottom of the notebook you can see two large grills of air intake as well as two smaller one for the speakers. Hot air exits the notebook from the back of the laptop.
|Lenovo Yoga 730 (15″)||360 mm (14.17″)||249 mm (9.80″)||17 mm (0.67″)||1.89 kg (4.2 lbs)|
|ASUS ZenBook Flip 15 (UX561UD)||365 mm (14.37″)||247 mm (9.72″)||21 mm (0.83″) (+23%)||2.10 kg (4.6 lbs) (+11%)|
|HP Envy 15 x360||359 mm (14.13″)||246 mm (9.69″)||18.9 mm (0.74″) (+11%)||2.14 kg (4.7 lbs) (+13%)|
We see nothing but the basics with this device. On the left side you can see the powerplug, a single USB Type-A 3.0 and an Audio jack. On the other side we see a similar picture – another USB Type-A 3.0, an HDMI connector and a USB Type-C with Thunderbolt support – yay. Lenovo has thoughtfully put the power button on this side so it is easilly accessible in every mode you use it.
Disassembly, upgrade options and maintenance
Yoga 730 (15″)’s disassembly is pretty straightforward. You first have to unscrew a total of ten Torx head screws. After that use a plastic pry tool to lift the bottom panel of the main body. A useful hint here would be to start the unprying process from the hinge location as they provide the most stable leverage force in the entire chassis.
After we pried it open, an interesting, rather busy, view was revealed upon us. We were pleasantly surprised to see two relatively large fans present on this device. However, we are not fans (see what we did there) of the design – same heat pipes used for either the CPU and the GPU.
Nevertheless, the cooling assembly is surrounded by the single RAM DIMM slot (8GB are soldered to the motherboard) and an M.2 NVMe connector, which offer some upgradability.
Lenovo has put a 51.5Wh battery pack in the Yoga 730 (15″) and it is located on the bottom part of the laptop.
Lenovo Yoga 730 (15″) has a tochscreen IPS panel, model number Innolux N156HCE-EN1 (CMN15E8). Its diagonal is 15.6″ (39.62 cm), and the resolution 1920 х 1080 pixels. The screen ratio is 16:9, and we are looking at a pixel density of – 142 ppi, and a pitch of 0.18 х 0.18 mm. The screen turns into Retina when viewed at distance equal to or greater than 60cm (24″) (from this distance one’s eye stops differentiating the separate pixels, and it is normal for looking at a laptop).
It has excellent viewing angles. We offer images at 45° to evaluate image quality.
The measured maximum brightness of 270 nits in the middle of the screen and 269 nits as an average for the whole area, with a maximum deviation of 7%. The Correlated Color Temperature on a white screen is 6650K – colder the optimal for the sRGB standard of 6500K. The average color temperature through the grey scale before profiling essentially matches the optimum at 6670K.
In the illustration below you can see how the display performs from a uniformity perspective. In other words, the leakage of light from the light source.
Values of dE2000 over 4.0 should not occur, and this parameter is one of the first you should check if you intend to use the laptop for color sensitive work. The contrast ratio is fine – 1140:1 (1000:1 after profiling)
To make sure we are on the same page, we would like to give you a little introduction to the sRGB color gamut and the Adobe RGB. To start, there’s the CIE 1976 Uniform Chromaticity Diagram that represents the visible specter of colors by the human eye, giving you a better perception of the color gamut coverage and the color accuracy.
Inside the black triangle, you will see the standard color gamut (sRGB) that is being used by millions of people in HDTV and on the web. As for the Adobe RGB, this is used in professional cameras, monitors etc for printing. Basically, colors inside the black triangle are used by everyone and this is the essential part of the color quality and color accuracy of a mainstream notebook.
Still, we’ve included other color spaces like the famous DCI-P3 standard used by movie studios, as well as the digital UHD Rec.2020 standard. Rec.2020, however, is still a thing of the future and it’s difficult for today’s displays to cover that well. We’ve also included the so-called Michael Pointer gamut, or Pointer’s gamut, which represents the colors that naturally occur around us every day.
The yellow dotted line shows Lenovo Yoga 730 (15″)’s color gamut coverage.
Its display covers 91% of the sRGB/ITU-R BT.709 (web/HDTV standard) in CIE1976.
Our “Design and Gaming” profile delivers optimal color temperature (6500K) at 140 cd/m2 luminance and sRGB gamma mode.
We tested the accuracy of the display with 24 commonly used colors like light and dark human skin, blue sky, green grass, orange etc. You can check out the results at factory condition and also, with the “Design and Gaming” profile.
Below you can compare the scores of Lenovo Yoga 730 (15″) with the default settings (left), and with the “Gaming and Web design” profile (right).
The next figure shows how well the display is able to reproduce really dark parts of an image, which is essential when watching movies or playing games in low ambient light.
The left side of the image represents the display with stock settings, while the right one is with the “Gaming and Web Design” profile activated. On the horizontal axis, you will find the grayscale and on the vertical axis – the luminance of the display. On the two graphs below you can easily check for yourself how your display handles the darkest nuances but keep in mind that this also depends on the settings of your current display, the calibration, the viewing angle, and the surrounding light conditions.
Response time (Gaming capabilities)
We test the reaction time of the pixels with the usual “black-to-white” and “white-to-black” method from 10% to 90% and vice versa.
We recorded Fall Time + Rise Time = 30 ms.
PWM (Screen flickering)
Pulse-width modulation (PWM) is an easy way to control monitor brightness. When you lower the brightness, the light intensity of the backlight is not lowered, but instead turned off and on by the electronics with a frequency indistinguishable to the human eye. In these light impulses, the light/no-light time ratio varies, while brightness remains unchanged, which is harmful to your eyes. You can read more about that in our dedicated article on PWM.
Lenovo Yoga 730 (15″)’s panel uses PWM for brightness adjustment up until 67 nits. Thankfully, it does so with a high enough frequency, hence there is a lot less harm done in this aspect.
Blue light emissions
Installing our Health-Guard profile not only eliminates PWM but also reduces the harmful Blue Light emissions while keeping the colors of the screen perceptually accurate. If you’re not familiar with the Blue light, the TL;DR version is – emissions that negatively affect your eyes, skin and your whole body. You can find more information about that in our dedicated article on Blue Light.
Yoga 730 (15″)’s display has an IPS panel with Full HD resolution, comfortable viewing angles, high contrast ratio, and wide color coverage. In addition to that, it doesn’t flicker above 67 nits, and below that the frequency is with a high frequency, which reduced the negative effect. If you want to completely eliminate the PWM you can buy our Health-Guard profile.
Buy our profiles
Since our profiles are tailored for each individual display model, this article and its respective profile package are meant for Lenovo Yoga 730 (15″) configurations with 15.6″ FHD IPS Innolux N156HCE-EN1.
*Should you have problems with downloading the purchased file, try using a different browser to open the link you’ll receive via e-mail. If the download target is a .php file instead of an archive, change the file extension to .zip or contact us at [email protected]
Read more about the profiles HERE.
In addition to receiving efficient and health-friendly profiles, by buying LaptopMedia's products you also support the development of our labs, where we test devices in order to produce the most objective reviews possible.
Office Work should be used mostly by users who spend most of the time looking at pieces of text, tables or just surfing. This profile aims to deliver better distinctness and clarity by keeping a flat gamma curve (2.20), native color temperature and perceptually accurate colors.
Design and Gaming
This profile is aimed at designers who work with colors professionally, and for games and movies as well. Design and Gaming takes display panels to their limits, making them as accurate as possible in the sRGB IEC61966-2-1 standard for Web and HDTV, at white point D65.
Health-Guard eliminates the harmful Pulse-Width Modulation (PWM) and reduces the negative Blue Light which affects our eyes and body. Since it’s custom tailored for every panel, it manages to keep the colors perceptually accurate. Health-Guard simulates paper so the pressure on the eyes is greatly reduced.
Get all 3 profiles with 33% discount
Lenovo Yoga 730 (15″) has a good sound quality. It’s tones are clear throughout the entire frequency range.
You can get all of the drivers and utilities you need for a future install or repair here: https://pcsupport.lenovo.com/bg/en/products/laptops-and-netbooks/yoga-series/yoga-730-15ikb/downloads
Now, we conduct the battery tests with Windows Better performance setting turned on, screen brightness adjusted to 120 nits and all other programs turned off except for the one we are testing the notebook with. This laptop comes in two battery variants. If you don’t have the dedicated GTX 1050 onboard, you’re probably going to get a 42Wh unit. In the case we have here, however, the battery has a 51.5Wh capacity.
Our unit is also equipped with a 1080p panel, so expect the UHD display to have a smaller battery life. Nevertheless, we were able to extract a little bit over 8 hours of web browsing and around 7 hours of video playback. Gaming here is not a good idea as you won’t get a lot more than 1 hour.
Usually, manufacturer’s choice of a storage device depends on the region they are selling it in. Nevertheless, we received it with a 256 GB NVMe drive. More precisely it is the SK Hynix PC401 (NVMe).
|SSD model (240-256GB variants)||Max.Seq.Read (GB/s)||Max.Seq.Write (GB/s)||IOPS 4K Read||IOPS 4K Write||Latency Read (ms)||Latency Write (ms)|
|SK Hynix PC401 (NVMe)||2.63||0.82||9363||20733||0.037||0.050|
|Intel Pro 6000p Series||1.83||0.59||7792||28266||0.075||0.033|
Lenovo Yoga 730 (15″) can be equipped with either a Coffee Lake or a Whiskey Lake ULV processor. You can choose from two Core i5s and two Core i7s, all of them slightly differing in the clock speeds. The Core i5-8256U and Core i7-8565U both have higher maximum turbo clock speeds, which are only going to be reached by a single core in a light to medium task. However, essentially, they are the same chips as their Coffee Lake brothers.
Lenovo Yoga 730 (15") CPU variants
Here you can see an approximate comparison between the CPUs that can be found in the Lenovo Yoga 730 (15") models on the market. This way you can decide for yourself which Lenovo Yoga 730 (15") model is the best bang for your buck.
Note: The chart shows the cheapest different CPU configurations so you should check what the other specifications of these laptops are by clicking on the laptop’s name / CPU.
GPU-wise there are three options. If you are not a pretentious graphic designer and won’t need the power of a GPU you can settle with the integrated UHD Graphics 620. Otherwise, you can choose between the 2GB and the 4GB versions of GeForce GTX 1050.
Despite the good looking cooling, GTX 1050 performed terribly in this notebook. Honestly, it performed worse than a GeForce MX150, and on some occasions – a UHD 620. We found that the main reason for this weird behavior is the power throttling of the CPU. Apparently, Lenovo hasn’t calculated the VRM’s as the Yoga 730 is obviously starving on power. 90W just don’t seem to be enough.
|CS:GO||Full HD, Low (Check settings)||Full HD, Medium (Check settings)||Full HD, MAX (Check settings)|
|Average FPS||61 fps||– fps||– fps|
|DOTA 2||Full HD, Normal (Check settings)||Full HD, High (Check settings)||Full HD, MAX (Check settings)|
|Average FPS||84 fps||44 fps||33 fps|
|Rise of the Tomb Raider (2016)||Full HD, Lowest (Check settings)||Full HD, Medium (Check settings)||Full HD, Very High (Check settings)|
|Average FPS||59 fps||43 fps||15 fps|
Temperatures and comfort
Max CPU load
In this test we use 100% on the CPU cores, monitoring their frequencies and chip temperature. The first column shows a computer’s reaction to a short load (2-10 seconds), the second column simulates a serious task (between 15 and 30 seconds), and the third column is a good indicator of how good the laptop is for long loads such as video rendering.
Average core temperature (base frequency + X); CPU temp.
|Intel Core i5-8250U (15W TDP)||0:02 – 0:10 sec||0:15 – 0:30 sec||10:00 – 15:00 min|
|Lenovo Yoga 730 (15″)||3.19 GHz (B+99%) @ 93°C||3.00 GHz (B+88%) @ 92°C||2.64 GHz (B+65%) @ 85°C|
|ASUS VivoBook S15 S530||2.99 GHz (B+87%) @ 77°C||2.99 GHz (B+87%) @ 87°C||2.29 GHz (B+62%) @ 71°C|
The temperature tests confirm what the benchmarks showed us. This is one of the fastest Core i5-8250U. On the other side it runs quite hot, throughout the entire period of the test, reaching the highest point in the beginning at 93C.
|NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050||GPU frequency/ Core temp (after 2 min)||GPU frequency/ Core temp (after 30 min)|
|Lenovo Yoga 730 (15″)||1683 [email protected] 74°C||1354 [email protected] 65°C|
|Lenovo IdeaPad 330-15ICH||1718 [email protected] 65°C||1643 MHz @ 65°C|
As we saw from the CPU test, the cooling solution is effortlessly able to handle an ULV chip. However, when we put some more pressure on it (in the form of GTX 1050) it’s potency starts to decay. Not only that but it makes the GPU slower than even the GeForce MX150 in gaming. Certainly something is rotten in the state of Denmark.
Thankfully, the palm-rest area of the Yoga 730 (15″) remained cool after half an hour of gaming. The hottest spot, however, was right in the middle of the keyboard, coinciding with the GPU location and the path of the two heatpipes.
Lenovo Yoga 730 (15″) is one of the best multipurpose machinery an artis can get righ now. Especially when it comes to the price point. It has both premium quality and a wide usability. Obviosly there are a lot of 2-in-1’s out there and moreover, a good quality ones. However, we rarely see a convertible to come with the accessories you usually use it with in the box. That’s not the case with the Yoga 730 (15″), though. With the Active Pen coming as a gift with the notebook you can put your Wacom tablet aside and enjoy 4096 levels of pressure and the nobility of looking at your pen while drawing.
Although we really like the Pen and the Yoga 730 (15″) as a way for artists to express themselves and work, there is a certain setback in it. The main one would be the refresh rate – a regular 60Hz screen won’t give you a maximum immersive when drawing. Most of the people, familiar with the latest iPad Pros know why artists love them so much – they work at 120Hz – both the touch panel and the screen itself. However, the IPS panel Innolux N145HCE-EN1 (CMN15E8)) has both high contrast and 91% sRGB coverage. In addition to that, the PWM it uses to adjust brightness levels has a high frequency and stops above 67 nits, which makes it safe for use.
Nevertheless, Yoga 730 has another issue. And this one is definitely more prominent. You know, they blessed this laptop with a dedicated GPU for a reason – to enhance visual processing, like video rendering and so on. However, the GTX 1050 here is underperforming… heavily. In games, it performs similarly to the MX150 while using three times more energy. What we found out is that the reason for that is surely not temperature but rather, power throttling.
This leaves a black mark over an otherwise good quality product. It is one of the few 2-in-1s that can be opened with a single hand and yet have a sturdy enough hinge design. So, if you don’t care about gaming or video editing, but are more into sketching and 2D models – this laptop is for you.
- Good build quality
- 91% sRGB coverage (Innolux N145HCE-EN1 (CMN15E8))
- Upgradable storage and memory
- Lack of harmfull PWM (Innolux N145HCE-EN1 (CMN15E8))
- Backlit keyboard
- One of the fastest Core i5-8250U performances on the market
- Lenovo Active Pen inside the box
- Gets noisy under a heavy workload
- Mushy keyboard with small sized keys
- Underperforming GTX 1050
You can check the prices and configurations in our Specs System: https://laptopmedia.com/series/lenovo-yoga-730-15/