ThinkPad X1 Yoga Gen 6 Review: The Flexible Flagship


Once upon a time, the Thinkpad X1 Yoga was Lenovo’s flagship convertible that joined the clam X1 Carbon at the top of the company’s business hierarchy. Today, it has more to follow. We now have a paper-thin, titanium-coated X1 titanium yoga, feather weight X1 Nano, and a powerhouse X1 Extreme all are excellent, expensive and can reasonably be considered their own flagship.

There’s a lot of innovation going on in the ThinkPad collection, but the X1 Yoga retains a lot of the hallmarks that have accentuated old ThinkPads over the years. (With starting mark $ 1,493.40$ 2315.28 tested – Includes a premium price.) Of course, there are some subtle but important upgrades, such as a 16:10 (finally) touch screen, a new gray color, a wider touchpad, and new security features that appeal mostly to business users. It’s far from the most cost-effective Windows convertible you can buy, but it has a lot to offer — especially for long-time ThinkPad fans looking for a modern pace in an established package.

Let’s start with the new ones: the 16:10 aspect ratio is here. This is a change that Lenovo has brought to other high-end ThinkPades this year, including the X1 Nano. I like this much better than the 16: 9 panel we saw 1st generationbecause it offers significantly more vertical space without adding a lot of footprint to the frame.

Another thing to consider on this screen is its matte texture – you don’t see matte touch screens very often. Writing with a pen feels basically the same as writing on a glossy panel, although the sound of pulling the tip is a little louder on a matte screen. (I also prefer to touch the matte texture, although preferences vary.) Mainly the matte texture makes the colors look a bit muted compared to glossy screens, but you also see significantly less glare and work in bright settings. a more feasible view. The colors were sharp enough to keep watching the videos still enjoyable, and I was able to distinguish the details well enough, so I noticed that the matte finish is positive overall. The panel also did not retain stains or fingerprints during the test period.

ThinkPad X1 Yoga Gen 6 fingerprint sensor seen from above.

Fingerprint reader and power button together.

ThinkPad X1 logo ThinkPad X1 in Yoga Gen 6 seen from above on a stone table.

No fingerprints here.

Another significant change: the touchpad is bigger. In particular, it is 4.33 inches wide, where Gen 5 (much resented by critics for it small size) was only four. It’s now wide, though it’s still a little short, and my fingers hit the plastic frame often as I scroll. If the trackpad is too tight for you, the X1 Yoga offers you many other ways to click: There are a number of separate buttons at the top of the touchpad (although they lack the red Accents that often appear in ThinkPad clicks) and a ThinkPad TrackPoint signature in the center of the keyboard. The device comes with a small pen that lives in the garage on the right side of the frame.

And then there are several updated security features that Lenovo has sprayed over the ThinkPad line. An optional IR webcam with human presence detection can automatically lock your computer if you’re not near (the webcam itself has a physical shutter, as ThinkPads traditionally do, and gives a fairly grainy image). a fingerprint sensor on the power button, a dTPM 2.0 security chip (which encrypts user data on the system), and an optional feature called Privacy Guard that makes it difficult to view the screen from the page.

But the most obvious update is the look. While the Gen 5’s case was gray, the Gen 6 is gray everywhere, including the keyboard, touchpad, and hinge. This means that yoga looks a little different than yoga other ThinkPad deviceswhich are traditionally very black. It gives X1 yoga a more futuristic feel than devices like X1 Carbon and X13, although red and gray are nowhere near as striking as red and black.

In any case, aesthetically for everyone their own. A little disappointing is how easily the scratched finish was. I bent my device into a tablet and placed it on the outside table for a few minutes for a short while drawing and writing, and when I took it, the palm rest was scratched. I was afraid to let the device close to anything sharp after that. If this affected writing for a few minutes, I’m worried about how this case can be scratched from daily tablet use.

Otherwise, I have no complaints about the quality of the structure. There is some flexibility on the keyboard cover, but not on the screen, and the screen did not flicker when I typed or touched the screen. The finish didn’t collect many fingerprints (a problem I sometimes have with black ThinkPads). The hinge is smooth, which makes folding and opening easy — I could open it with one hand with difficulty. It’s also a pretty portable product, three pounds and 0.59 inches thick, albeit a bit heavy to hold on a tablet for long periods of time.

ThinkPd X1 Yoga Gen 6 half open, left corner, rear view on a stone bench outside.

Aluminum top, aluminum bottom.

ThinkPad X1 in Yoga tablet mode, seen from above, on a stone bench.

Use it in tablet, tent, tripod or shell mode.

Elsewhere, X1 yoga is very good. ThinkPad keyboards are world famous, and this one — although flatter than some siblings — is still comfortable to travel with excellence. Note that like most ThinkPad devices, yoga has half-sized arrow keys and the Fn and Ctrl keys are swapped out of place on most other laptops, which requires a lot of getting used to. (You can edit these keys again, but getting incorrectly marked keys can still be eye-catching for some.) The port selection is great, including two Thunderbolt 4 ports (a new addition to the X1 Yoga), USB 3.2 Type-A and HDMI 2.0 on the left, USB 3.2 Type A, headphone jack and locking slot on the right. Four 360-degree microphones nicely received my voice. And the Dolby Atmos speaker system sounds good, with audible bass and very clear vocals.

The X1 Yoga Gen 6 has a million and one lineups with all sorts of add-ons. One interesting thing: cheapest listed model (currently $ 1493.40) is actually a Linux model. Basic features include a Core i5-1135G7, 8GB of RAM (soldered) and 256GB of storage. My test template (Windows 10 Pro, not Linux) is listed at $ 2315.28 at B&H and includes a quad-core Core i7-1165G7, 512GB of storage and 16GB of RAM.

Then there are various add-ons. Windows 10 Pro costs you $ 60 more than Windows 10 Home. You can even run into a 3840 x 2400 screen or a 1920 x 1200 screen with Privacy Guard. Both options are only available with an IR camera, which is $ 30 compared to a standard camera. Human presence detection, which is also available with an IR camera only, is an additional $ 15. You can also add 4G and 5G mobile broadband; prices vary depending on the modem you choose.

The Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Yoga Gen 6 is viewed from above with a stone bench.  The screen displays an outdoor night view with an orange banner and a Lenovo banner in the lower right corner.

Do you see scratches on clicks?

The Core i7 used here is the same processor found in many the best laptops market and is sufficient for all types of demanding workloads. Intel’s Iris Xe graphics card can help with work tasks and lighter gaming, although X1 Yoga is by no means a gaming laptop. Apps launched quickly, and I didn’t notice much stuttering or slowing down during my day, which was full of streaming, image processing, and slacking over about a dozen Chrome tabs. Performance depends a bit more on your battery profile than on other Windows laptops – I had to turn off power saving when I tried to make a Zoom call over multiple tabs and apps because everything started to freeze.

Speaking of the battery, the lifespan of the X1 Yoga is not a disaster, but it was still great for a convertible bond at this price level. I used an average of eight hours and seven minutes of continuous use with the screen medium. It’s not a bad result, but I’ve seen better of this level of top laptops.

The last observation – which I am probably a little too happy about – is that there is no bloatware in this matter. No McAfee, no Norton, no nonsense that I had to remove as soon as I started it. I usually hope that laptops over the $ 1,000 limit are not charged with these items, but I see them regularly on expensive consumer laptops from all kinds of businesses (including Lenovo). I’m glad the ThinkPad isn’t full of rubbish, but consumers should also have this experience.

Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Yoga Gen 6, in painting mode, at an angle to the left stone outer bench.  The screen displays an outdoor night view with an orange banner and a Lenovo banner in the lower right corner.

Bloatware-free area.

The ThinkPad X1 Yoga can really be anything because it has so many accessories and configurations and prices range from $ 1,500 to over $ 3,000. It can be a mid-size convertible with basic information, or it can be a premium Business Notebook with the ThinkPad series feature. Among the saturated sea of ​​replaceable ThinkPad devices, it is definitely worth considering.

Thus, it is a rather expensive line for the consumer or the self-employed. Contextually, you get a comparable model of Lenovo’s most popular consumer car Yoga 9i, only $ 1,529 with even the Core i7-1185G7, a step above the chip that came with my test model. X1 Yoga models with that processor start at $ 1,938. Like the X1 Yoga, the Yoga 9i has a changeable shape, a physical webcam shutter, a built-in pen, a one-year warranty, and most of the same Lenovo software.

This raises the question of where all the extra money really costs. The X1 Yoga’s 16:10 aspect ratio is definitely a bonus, as is the lack of bloatware and a matte screen. On the other hand, the 9i has better battery life (as well as many consumer cars at that price), exceptional sound, and some really innovative features like a haptic touchpad and ultrasonic fingerprint reader. At some point, X1 yoga buyers will actually pay a premium for the ThinkPad building. ThinkPads have unique features – their TrackPoint and unique keyboard setup are always within reach of their owners – but they also have a sleek and professional look. They are known for their extreme durability (and the X1 Yoga is MIL-spec tested, although the X1 Yoga’s scratch pad and keyboard flexibility give me a break on this front). All in all, like an apple bitten by a MacBook, the ThinkPad logo is a graphic that everyone recognizes. It is related to the high quality, longevity and performance of construction – it has a certain position among both business users and consumers.

All is well if you so desire. If you’re looking for a modern ThinkPad that’s competitive with today’s best laptops, and especially if you’re interested in little things like Linux and human presence detection, this is probably the machine of your dreams. All I have to do is note that if you are so interested in the ThinkPad brand, you can get most of this offer at a much cheaper price.

Photographer Monica Chin

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