Lenovo IdeaPad Yoga 2 Pro Lenovo has built one of the slimmest, lightest and best-looking hybrids around – and it’s done it without sacrificing strength. The dimensions mean there’s marginal flex in the corners of the wrist-rest and the centre of the screen, but the keyboard and underside feel strong, and the desktop didn’t warp when the screen was flexed. The hinges, too, are sturdy.The Lenovo IdeaPad Yoga 2 is an excellent ultrabook, even without digging into its hybrid capabilities. This new model adds a backlit keyboard and an impressive 3,200x1,800-pixel-resolution display, while keeping the price under $1,000.The impressive specs continue with an up to an Intel Haswell Core i7-4500Y processor and up to 512 GB SSD. There's also up to 8 GB of DDR3 RAM. Performance:
The Intel Core i5-4200U at the heart of this machine is a Haswell processor, but its two cores are clocked to just 1.6GHz – the hallmarks of a low-power part. Still, it’s got Hyper-Threading, a Turbo Boost top speed of 2.6GHz and 4GB of RAM. That’s enough for PC Mark 7 and GeekBench scores of 4,619 and 4,427: comparable speed to the Samsung and Apple, and enough to ensure that applications load and run smoothly – even if they’re more demanding work tools.
In several other key areas, the Lenovo can’t match the MacBook. Both laptops have 128GB SSDs, but the Lenovo’s drive returned sequential read and write scores of 484MB/s and 129MB/s – a good first result undermined by a dreadful second score. The MacBook, conversely, uses PCI-powered storage to hit 709MB/s and 557MB/s. The Lenovo is faster than a hard disk, but hasn’t got the pace of the MacBook – so it lags behind across the board, from application loading to system booting.
The Lenovo has an Intel HD Graphics 4400 chipset but, again, Apple is better thanks to its HD Graphics 5000 core. The Yoga scored 36,515 in the 3D Mark Ice Storm benchmark and then 574 in the tough Fire Strike test – but the GPU used by Apple has been clocked elsewhere as scoring 39,288 and 745 in the same benchmarks.
Both chips are only good enough for casual gaming and light graphical work, but Apple undoubtedly leads the way in this department.
When idling and running less intensive tasks we had no noise issues, but that’s not the case with more demanding software. During tougher benchmarks and stress-tests the fan was noticeable in our quiet office. It’s not as loud as the Kira, and temperatures never hit hazardous levels, but it’s still obvious noise.
But, In battery life it lags behind a couple of more expensive higher-res laptops, some of the hybrid modes are of dubious use, and Lenovo still doesn't know what to do with the keyboard in tablet mode.
The bottom line: The Lenovo IdeaPad Yoga 2 boasts a gorgeous quad HD plus display and a lighter design for switching between notebook and tablet mode, all for a good price. A major update to our favorite Windows 8 hybrid, the IdeaPad Yoga 2 Pro is still a better laptop than tablet, but the new version adds a future-proof better-than-HD display at a great price. Specifications
ProcessorIntel 4th gen Core i3 4010U / 1.7 GHz
RAM installed size4 GB
Hard Drive128 GB
Operating SystemMicrosoft Windows 8.1
Display Type13.3 in
Max Resolution3200 x 1800
Weight3.1 lbs Price $999 VS HP Envy x2 The Envy x2 impressed us. Its outstanding industrial design really shows the potential of a tablet/laptop hybrid. The HP Envy x2 has a clean, comfortable design and feels lightweight in tablet form. It has excellent battery life, and works just as well as a laptop as it does as a tablet. Performance: Unfortunately, as soon as we start talking performance we’re confronted by the fact that Clover Trail is still Atom, and Atom is still not in any way, shape or form a performance chip – and that 2GB RAM maximum doesn’t help here either.Don’t get us wrong, for navigating through Windows and average daily use such as browsing the web and running apps or light programs, the Z2760 in the HP Envy x2 runs smooth as butter. Performance is consistently superior to that in the netbooks of yore, especially when it comes to HD video playback and light multi-tasking, and most non 3D-gaming apps you’ll find in the Windows store should run without a hitch.
However, proper multi-tasking; running intensive HD video simultaneously with another program; or using demanding programs like an image editor can still quite easily bring this kind of machine to its knees. In other words, as a tablet the x2 performs admirably, but as a laptop replacement you have to be prepared to put up with its limitations.
3D gaming in anything but the most casual titles, meanwhile, is also a big no-no. Even at minimum settings our test games simply refused to run or crashed after getting through the menus. Mind you, this is not surprising given that Intel’s integrated GMA 3600 chip paired with the Atom Z2760 is derived from an old PowerVR design the benefits of which Windows drivers don’t fully bring out. Hopefully updated drivers will eek out more performance. Battery life: Battery life is impressive, living up to HP’s claim of seven hours when we streamed video from BBC iPlayer. And, of course, there’s a second battery in the keyboard, which provides an additional seven hours of battery life. No ultrabook that weighs a similar amount can claim to last this long. But, The laptop mode is top-heavy, and the awkward tablet detachment mechanism isn’t perfect; it has limited ports; and a slower Atom processor means in performance it's far behind most ultrabooks, even though it’s priced like one. The bottom line: The HP Envy x2’s capacity to be a full Windows 8 tablet or dock with a keyboard works as well as advertised, provided you’re willing to live with slower performance at a high price. You’re paying for style.
Windows 8 (32-bit); 1.8GHz Intel Atom Z2760; 2GB DDR2 SDRAM 1,066MHz; 747MB (Total) Intel GMA; 64GB SSD Processor 1.8GHz Intel Atom Z2760
Memory 2GB, 1,066MHz DDR2
Hard drive 64GB SSD
Graphics Intel GMA
Operating system Windows 8
Dimensions (WD) 11.9x8.1 inches
Height 0.6-0.7 inch
Screen size (diagonal) 11.6 inches
System weight / Weight with AC adapter 3.1 pounds / 3.6 pounds (tablet + keyboard)
Category Ultraportable hybrid Price; $849 VS Dell XPS 12 The Dell XPS 12 is a thin, powerful, very cleverly designed touch-screen convertible that flips into multiple screen positions.This machine’s key feature is a 12.5-inch touchscreen with a native resolution of 1920 by 1080 pixels that pivots inside its aluminum frame—just as on the original. Open the lid, and you can use the computer as you would any other notebook. You simply push the top front or bottom back of the display to pop it out of its frame, and then flip it over and close it to convert the machine into a tabletThe biggest improvement, though, lies in battery life. The Ivy Bridge version of the XPS 12 provided 5 hours of streaming video, but that figure rose to a 6 hours and 45 minutes when we tested again with the same test.The Dell XPS 12 is one of the most powerful Ultrabooks you'll find. It might be heavy and awkward as a tablet, but when you consider the value that's on offer, with the blistering processor, 8GB of RAM and 256GB SSD drive, there's more than meets the eye..
But, For all the hype about touch and tablets with Windows 8, the XPS 12 still works better as a laptop than as a slate. Its battery life is on the low side.
The bottom line: Dell has revamped its rotating Duo laptop concept into the much-improved XPS 12, but like most convertibles, it makes a better laptop than tablet.
Windows 8 (64-bit); 1.9GHz Intel Core i7-3517U; 8GB DDR3 SDRAM 1,333MHz; 32MB (Shared) Intel HD 4000; 256GB Lite-On IT SSD Specifications
ProcessorIntel 3rd Gen Core i5 3317U / 2.6 GHz
Hard Drive128 GB
Operating SystemMicrosoft Windows 8
Display Type12.5 in
Max Resolution1920 x 1080
Graphics ProcessorIntel HD 4000
Weight3.35 lbs Price;$1,199.99