Lenovo 9i 14 review, the ultraportable that favors comfort over endurance

Take an Intel EVO platform, fit it into a Lenovo Yoga 14 inch flexible hinged chassis, paint the latter black, insert a 4K panel, cover with a little bit of cow – just a bit of skin, not room for a rump – and you get the Lenovo Yoga 9i 14, or “Yoga 9 14ITL5” as its product code name.

A fairly luxurious ultra-portable both on the platform – Core i7, 16 GB of RAM, 1 TB of SSD, etc. – only on the form, with its glass touchpad, its leather coating and its beautiful 4K screen.

Intel Evo in the kitchen

At the heart of the machine is Intel’s latest technical platform called EVO. A name which includes not only the Intel processor, here a Core i7 1185G7, but also the respect of a very complete specification, like the Centrino of the 2000s. Thunderbolt, etc. A sticker full of guarantees of comfort and equipment, reinforced by the good level of performance of the SoC, both from the point of view of the CPU and the GPU.

The applications are responsive, such as this processing and export of ten RAW files from OM-D E-M1 Mark II under Lightroom, which is done in less than a minute. The GPU is not to be outdone, since the Intel Xe chip integrated into the SoC is on par with the Radeon Vega 8 of AMD’s Ryzen 4000s. You can play The Witcher 3 in Full HD at a satisfactory level of detail in Full HD at 30 fps. Not enough to store your gaming machine, but a level of performance unthinkable in an ultraportable five years ago.

4K screen: increased reading comfort at the cost of endurance

Let’s lay the groundwork: yours truly is initially in favor of a good Full HD panel and a battery that lasts more than a day rather than a 4K screen that swallows watts. However, with 7:53 of versatile battery life and 6:44 in video playback, this Yoga 9i comes close to the target decent endurance – 8:00 in any scenario. Not a must have, but good enough to go on the mop with you – at 1.46kg the device alone, it won’t break your lower back.

What he loses in terms of juice, he gains in reading comfort. In addition to the very good colors of the panel (100% of the NTSC spectrum and 90% of the DCI P3), the touch screen offers excellent reading comfort. On a panel smaller than 13 inches, the difference is generally less significant, but from 14 inches we begin to perceive the interest of the greater density in pixels. Don’t throw away your Full HD panels, but to write this test on another 14-inch PC (the Lenovo Yoga Slim 7), the difference is noticeable. You have to figure out how long you work away from a power outlet to make your choice – the same chassis exists with a cheaper Full HD panel.

Leather, this material so pretty … and so fragile

The back cover of our test unit’s display was covered with a leather covering. A noble material, the most beautiful effect in your Montblanc outfit. And which raised my elegance index by 19 points (which starts from very low). Except what do you see, I’m a savage. Not a complete sagouin, but still the type to fill my backpack with the delicacy of a cave (or swamp) troll. And when does it get stuck? Well I force a little …

In the exercise of my profession, this rude behavior has the benefit of quickly highlighting the fragile elements of the products. And bingo, you hit the nail on the head, the leather upholstery of the unit that I returned showed several pretty neat scuffs. If the journalist is necessarily a little angry, the consumer who has just invested a little less than 1700 euros in his machine has enough to rage even more.

If you are a delicate person and like the finish, why not. But in absolute terms, this coating is not the most aesthetically sustainable choice.

The verdict of the test

Lenovo Yoga 9i (14ITL5)

the Yoga 9i is not a wise PC: its price is high and its leather coating stands out in the very metal-plastic world of computing. Its high-quality 4K screen makes fun of machines that last 15 hours wirelessly, which must be recharged every 7-8 hours. It is there to offer, in an easy-to-transport format (1.45 kg), a powerful, luxurious and comfortable machine that can be placed near a socket on the coffee table to work all day long. Finally, when the cafes are open again, eh …

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