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Lenovo Yoga C930 Review: A Solid Laptop with Exceptional Audio

The Lenovo Yoga C930 is an extremely solid laptop with exceptional audio performance that will impress anyone and everyone. To say that at the top of a review should tell you something about the overall quality of the device. Now sure, I’m a huge fan of Lenovo laptops to begin with. But any way I look at this thing, whether I put my feet in the shoes of a Lenovo hater or lover, it’s virtually impossible to deny this laptop is seriously well-rounded.

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For the design, Lenovo opts for an all-aluminum enclosure that greatly resembles many a modern laptop currently on the market. The fit and finish is spot on, however, with precision-crafted edges and chamfers that add both character and sophistication to the overall aesthetic. The company sent over the Iron Grey model for our review, and I have to say, it’s definitely more appealing than the standard silver models I’ve reviewed in the past. It’s also pretty light at three pounds which won’t put too much weight on your back if you stuff this guy into your backpack.

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In case you’re curious, the “C” in the Yoga C930’s name means this is a convertible laptop. This means you can bend the device’s display backwards 360 degrees to enter tablet mode, tent mode, watch mode, or laptop mode. A lot of laptops do this nowadays so there’s not a ton special in this department.

What is interesting, however, is the hinge itself. Historically, Lenovo has used its watchband hinge to allow for 360-degree adjustability. But starting with the C930, the company’s flagship Yoga laptop now uses a standard hinge with a speaker built right into it. By implementing the audio output into this section of the laptop, you get much better audio quality since sound is always pointing at you, regardless of the laptop’s orientation.

What’s more, the speaker on the C930 is tuned with Dolby Atmos and features two additional speakers on the bottom for a truly immersive experience. Honestly, the C930 has some of the best speakers I’ve ever heard in a laptop. Sound is wide and crisp with a broad soundstage, strong mids, and good bass. The highs can be a bit lost at higher volumes, but you know what? I don’t care. These speakers are so good they basically put every other laptop to shame. They’re that good.

Of course, sound isn’t the only thing the Yoga C930 excels in. As is routine with flagship laptops, Lenovo includes 8th-generation Intel Core i-series processors (the Y series, of course) alongside 8 to 16GB of RAM, up to 1TB of SSD storage, and integrated Intel graphics. For our review, the company sent us a model that includes an 8th-gen Intel Core i7, 12GB of RAM, and a 256GB SSD, costing $1,575.

With these specs, you can expect nothing short of great performance while using Windows 10. The laptop’s perfect for productivity and having multiple programs running in the background thanks to the added RAM. It’s even great for some video editing if you need it on the go.

What the Yoga C930 isn’t great at in terms of performance is gaming. Since it’s limited to Intel integrated graphics, you won’t get the smoothest frame rates or responsiveness you may get from something like an external GPU. That being said, you aren’t really buying this laptop for gaming anyway so it’s a small compromise.

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As for the display you’ll be doing all your work on, there isn’t much special here. The Yoga C930 offers a 13.9-inch Full HD (1920×1080) panel that supports Dolby Vision for added clarity and quality when watching supported content. In everyday use, it looks absolutely fine with no real issues regarding color or contrast. Viewing angles are also great, although I would’ve loved to see some extra brightness added, especially for brightly lit environments like the outdoors. There’s also a 13.9-inch 4K (3840×2160) display option, but I didn’t get a chance to check that model out.

Regardless, everything else about using the Yoga C930 is pretty great. Lenovo includes two USB-C ports that can both handle charging and data transfer, a single USB-A port for older cables, and a headphone jack because this is a laptop and not a smartphone. It might not sound like much, but this port array should be enough for most users. Anyone who needs more can always buy some dongles.

There’s also another “port” on the back of the C930 that stores an included stylus. After popping it out of its socket, you can use the pen to draw on the C930’s screen for note-taking, signing documents, and doing artsy things. I don’t typically use a stylus while I’m working, but it did come in handy when I wanted some better precision for a project I’m working on.

Notably, the pen also includes a shortcut button for quickly accessing different controls and 4,096 points of pressure sensitivity.

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For security, Lenovo includes a fingerprint sensor underneath the keyboard which works with Windows Hello. I have to say, the past few Lenovo laptops I’ve used have all had garbage fingerprint scanners. I’m not sure if it was because they were recessed too far into the body to be reliable or they were just cheap sensors, but they never seemed to work 70 percent of the time. With this sensor, I’m able to scan my fingerprint and sign in 80 to 85 percent of the time. This still isn’t perfect, but I’ll take it nonetheless.

Also in the security department, Lenovo includes a cover for your webcam. Called the “TrueBlock Privacy Shutter,” the cover can manually slide in front of your camera in case you’re paranoid about hackers secretly spying on you. It’s a much sexier way of putting duct tape over your webcam, essentially. Still, though, it’s a great feature more manufacturers should implement.

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As far as the keyboard and trackpad go, we’ve told this story before. Lenovo offers a comfortable keyboard with a fair amount of travel and clickiness, while the trackpad is covered in smooth glass and supports Microsoft’s precision drivers. This creates a comfortable and convenient typing/navigating experience. It won’t blow you away, but it’ll at least make you feel right at home.

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Finally, let’s talk battery life. Lenovo claims the Yoga C930 can last up to 14.5 hours off a full charge with the 1080p display. During my usage, I saw around 10 to 11 hours of usage on good days when I wasn’t doing anything too heavy and 8 to 9 hours of usage when I had some more intense tasks to complete. Still, you should expect to get about 10 hours of usage out of this guy which, quite frankly, is pretty good for such a powerful laptop.

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To quote the beginning of this review, it’s hard to deny just how well-rounded the Yoga C930 is. It offers a good screen, great performance, great battery life, mind-blowing audio quality, and a great build. Plus it offers a 2-in-1 design for added versatility. What more do you need from a laptop?

In the end, if you were debating whether to pick this guy up, I would totally go for it. It may be pricey, with starting prices sitting at around $1,300 when not on sale, but at least to me, it’s definitely worth it.

Rating: 8.5/10

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Also published on Medium.

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