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Lenovo Yoga 730 review: Still a great 2-in-1 for the money

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The Good The thinner, lighter 13.3-inch Lenovo Yoga 730 two-in-one improves on last year's model with faster 8th-gen Intel Core i-series processors; dual Thunderbolt 3 USB-C ports; far-field mics; a quick-charge feature; and -- eventually -- support for Amazon Alexa.

The Bad Battery life is good, but not great for the category and is the only area where performance is not better than its predecessor in our tests. USB type-C adapters are needed for Ethernet or HDMI output, and there's no SD card slot.

The Bottom Line The 13.3-inch Lenovo Yoga 730 doesn't change much from last year, but what Lenovo added definitely improves the package to keep it one of the best thin-and-light two-in-ones you can buy.

8.0 Overall
  • Design 9
  • Features 8
  • Performance 8
  • Battery 7

Review Sections

Sometimes playing it safe really is the best move to make.

The 13.3-inch Lenovo Yoga 720 was an excellent two-in-one for the money, and its follow up, the Yoga 730 ($715 at Amazon Marketplace), is no different. And when I say "no different" I mean Lenovo changed little between the two models, resulting in a slightly better but not drastically dissimilar laptop. Moving up to eighth-gen Intel Core i-series processors is the biggest change, and it results in a noticeable performance boost. 

There are a handful of other changes, like it now has two Thunderbolt 3 USB-C ports instead of only one, and Lenovo added far-field microphones letting you call out to Microsoft's Cortana digital assistant and eventually Amazon Alexa services from up to 13 feet (4 meters) away. 

The 730's design changes slight, too, but you probably wouldn't notice unless it was next to the 720. it's a little thinner and lighter, and the edges are rounded more, especially at the back. All the changes make it more comfortable to use as a tablet, whether that's with your fingers or the optional $60 Active Pen 2 with 4,096 levels of pen sensitivity.

01-lenovo-yoga-730-13ikb
Sarah Tew/CNET

Despite the improvement, the pricing stays about the same as the Yoga 720: The 730 starts at $880, but my review system is priced at $950, which gets you a storage increase from a 128GB PCIe SSD to a 256GB drive. The Yoga 730 isn't yet available in the UK or Australia, but the US price converts to about £700 and AU$1,265. For office work, for school work, this is just a solid pick and a good value to boot if you want a thin and light laptop. 

Lenovo Yoga 730-13IKB

Price as reviewed $949.99
Display size/resolution 13.3-inch 1,920x1,080 touch display
CPU 1.6GHz Intel Core i5-8250U
Memory 8GB DDR4 SDRAM 2,400MHz
Graphics 128MB dedicated Intel UHD Grphics 620
Storage 256GB SSD
Networking 802.11ac wireless, Bluetooth 4.1
Operating system Windows 10 Home (64-bit)

More and less

Basically, everything that made the 13.3-inch Yoga 720 an excellent two-in-one is still present in the 730, albeit in a slimmer, lighter package at 2.7 pounds (1.2kg) and 0.55-inch (14.1mm) thick. The iron gray metal chassis gives it a premium look and feel as do the slim bezels around the full-HD-resolution touchscreen. The screen's hefty 360-degree hinges keep the Yoga in just about any position you could want it in. They're stiff enough that it will require two hands to open it, but not so much that you'll have problems adjusting it.

The display has good color performance, but not good enough to recommend for critical photo and video editing (though this isn't designed for that in the first place). It gets adequately bright for outdoor use, though with the glossy coating you might still struggle. One nice extra, though: The display also supports Lenovo's optional $60 Active Pen 2 if writing or drawing on the screen is a necessity for you.  

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