Lenovo ThinkPad L13 Yoga Gen 4 review: A business laptop that shouldn’t earn your business

Can a laptop be so mediocre? The ThinkPad L13 Yoga proves so

Lenovo ThinkPad L13 Yoga Gen 4 review
(Image: © Future)

Laptop Mag Verdict

The Lenovo ThinkPad L13 Yoga Gen 4 is a shell of its older siblings and suffers from mediocre scores across the board — it has a nice keyboard, though.


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    Strong security features

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    Bouncy keyboard


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    Dim display

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    Middling performance

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    Below average battery life

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Since Lenovo’s ThinkPad X1 Carbons have been a massive hit, the company has expanded its ThinkPad lineup in the past several years to meet different budgets, but the Lenovo ThinkPad L13 Yoga Gen 4 is a poor execution of this plan.

Everything great about an X1 Carbon becomes immediately mediocre in the ThinkPad L13 Yoga — and Lenovo will still charge you $1,579 for the experience. It doesn’t meet our standards for display brightness, performance, or battery life. And really, the only thing I like about it is the keyboard.

The Lenovo ThinkPad L13 Yoga Gen 4 is far from making the best business laptops list, and let me tell you why.

Lenovo ThinkPad L13 Yoga Gen 4 price and configurations

I reviewed the ThinkPad L13 model that featured an Intel Core i7-1355U processor, 16GB of RAM, a 512GB SSD, and a 13.3-inch, 1920 x 1200 display, which runs for $1,579.

There’s a slightly cheaper model ($1,439) that drops you down to an i5-1335U processor, but that’s just over $100 cheaper. It’s not worth it.

If you’re looking for something within a smaller budget, check out the best cheap laptops.

Lenovo ThinkPad L13 Yoga Gen 4 design

While materials may change, when it comes to design, a ThinkPad is a ThinkPad. Soft gray-black wraps around the machine, with a Lenovo and a ThinkPad logo on the lid that flips open to a smooth deck with a depressed keyboard accented by the classic red pointing stick and clickers.

Lenovo ThinkPad L13 Yoga Gen 4 review

(Image credit: Future)

The 2-in-1 laptop flips even further to transition into a tablet, highlighting the display’s thick-as-a-brick bezels and webcam. Lenovo separated the power button from the keyboard, which would make Laptop Mag alum Phillip Tracy very happy.

At 2.9 pounds and 12.0 x 8.6 x 0.67 inches, the ThinkPad L13 Yoga maintains a very competitive weight and size. The Acer Swift Go 14 (2.9 pounds, 12.6 x 8.6 x 0.8 inches), HP Envy x360 2-in-1 (4 pounds, 14.1 x 9 x 0.7 inches), and MacBook Pro 14 (3.4 pounds, 12.3 x 8.7 x 0.6 inches) couldn’t get lighter than the ThinkPad.

Lenovo ThinkPad L13 Yoga Gen 4 ports

Despite being a light and thin notebook, the ThinkPad L13 Yoga features all of the necessary ports.

Lenovo ThinkPad L13 Yoga Gen 4 review

(Image credit: Future)

On the left you’ll find the Thunderbolt 4 charging port, one USB Type-A port, and a headphone jack, while the right holds room for a security lock slot, one Thunderbolt 4 port, one USB Type-A port, and an HDMI port.

Lenovo ThinkPad L13 Yoga Gen 4 review

(Image credit: Future)

Do you find yourself in need of more ports? Check out our best USB Type-C hubs and best laptop docking stations pages.

Lenovo ThinkPad L13 Yoga Gen 4 security and durability

ThinkPads are business notebooks, so naturally we expect to have a few features for those that need some security and durability in their products. 

This machine features a discrete TPM 2.0 security chip, a fingerprint reader, a Kensington Nano Security Slot, a self-healing BIOS, and a privacy shutter for the webcam. For durability, Lenovo boasts its usual MIL-STD testing, which tests against 12 standards and more than 200 quality checks. It covers arctic wilderness, desert dust storms, extreme temperature, pressure, humidity, vibration, and more.

Lenovo ThinkPad L13 Yoga Gen 4 display

With a glossy display, I expected the ThinkPad L13 Yoga’s 13.3-inch, 1920 x 1200 screen to be plenty bright. I was wrong. Its competitors outshined it by light years.

Lenovo ThinkPad L13 Yoga Gen 4 review

(Image credit: Future)

I watched the trailer for “Furiosa: A Mad Max Saga,” and the titular character looked pale and her surroundings were dimmer than George Miller’s intended flair. The night shots that took place around the apocalyptic city were rough to make out, especially due to the glare. The screen is still relatively sharp, so Anya Taylor-Joy’s hair looked crisp as it whipped around on screen.

According to our colorimeter, the ThinkPad L13 Yoga covered 83.8% of the DCI-P3 color gamut, which misses the 97.8% premium laptop average. The Swift Go 14 (79.1%) and MacBook Pro 14 (81.3%) didn’t do much better, but the Envy x360 blasted the room with 128.1%.

When we look at the brightness, it’s where things start to crumble. At 274 nits, the ThinkPad L13 Yoga comes up well short of the 434-nit category average. It doesn’t even get in the same vicinity as the Swift Go 14 (374 nits), Envy x360 (378 nits), or MacBook Pro 14 (558 nits).

Lenovo ThinkPad L13 Yoga Gen 4 keyboard and touchpad

One thing remains consistent across the ThinkPads I’ve tested — they have a pleasantly bouncy keyboard. It’s easy to get straight to typing your thesis or report even on its relatively small deck.

Lenovo ThinkPad L13 Yoga Gen 4 review

(Image credit: Future)

I hit 80 words per minute on the 10fastfingers.com typing test, which is just above my usual 78-wpm. It would be nice to have a little more space between keys, but it’s still rather comfortable the way it is.

The touchpad has a delightful clicker — it’s soft and deep. There’s some resistance on the touchpad you’ll have to overcome, but I’ve certainly seen worse. Windows gestures like three-finger tabbing and two-finger scrolling worked well.

Lenovo ThinkPad L13 Yoga Gen 4 audio

Lenovo’s bottom-firing speakers come out rather muted and mediocre, even with help from Dolby Access.

I listened to “Herald of Darkness” by Old Gods of Asgard (it’s a real band, I swear) and the opening percussion didn’t have any oomph to give a proper introduction to the madness of the track. The vocals were clear, but not very crisp. The guitar was the more prominent instrument, but the overall sound was weaker than my Pixel 6.

You can adjust the sound in the Lenovo Vantage app, which features Dolby Access, but no combination of settings changes are going to satisfy you — even after jumping between all the presets.

Lenovo ThinkPad L13 Yoga Gen 4 performance

Packed with an Intel Core i7-1355U processor and 16GB of RAM, the Lenovo ThinkPad L13 Yoga didn’t have trouble juggling a couple dozen Google Chrome tabs and a handful of 1080p YouTube videos. It did, however, struggle against the competition.

Lenovo ThinkPad L13 Yoga Gen 4 review

(Image credit: Future)

On the Geekbench 5.5 overall performance test, the ThinkPad scored 7,083 vs. the 8,013 premium laptop average. The Swift Go 14’s Core Ultra 7 155H (10,692), Envy x360’s AMD Ryzen 7 7730U (7,748), and MacBook Pro 14’s M3 (10,752) all surpassed the Lenovo notebook.

The ThinkPad transcoded a 4K video to 1080p in 12 minutes and 8 seconds on our HandBrake benchmark, which was minutes behind the category average (7:51). Meanwhile, the Swift Go 14 (3:18), Envy x360 (7:30), and MacBook Pro 14 (5:38) crushed the average.

Lenovo’s 512GB SSD sports a transfer rate of 768 megabytes per second, which is almost half of the average premium laptop (1,389 MBps). It did just as poorly against the SSDs in the Swift Go 14 (1,458 MBps), Envy x360 (1,245 MBps), and MacBook Pro 14 (2,956 MBps).

Lenovo ThinkPad L13 Yoga Gen 4 graphics

With an Intel Iris Xe Graphics chip, the ThinkPad L13 Yoga wasn’t destined to succeed in the graphics department.

On the 3DMark Fire Strike synthetic graphics benchmark, the ThinkPad L13 Yoga scored 4,921, which falls way behind the average premium laptop (8,914). It gets a consolation prize against the Envy x360’s AMD Radeon Graphics chip (3,872), but it’s a short-lived victory when the Swift Go 14’s Intel Arc GPU (7,356) slides in.

The ThinkPad L13 Yoga averaged 29 frames per second on the Sid Meier's Civilization VI: Gathering Storm benchmark (Medium, 1080p), which again misses the mark against the category average (54 fps) as well as the Swift Go 14 (54 fps), Envy x360 (42 fps), MacBook Pro 14 (51 fps).

Lenovo ThinkPad L13 Yoga Gen 4 battery life

Despite being a business notebook, the ThinkPad L13 Yoga can’t catch a break in the departments that matter. On the Laptop Mag Battery Test, the Yoga lasted 8 hours and 39 minutes on a single charge, which doesn’t meet the premium laptop average (10:37). The Swift Go 14 (9:50) and Envy x360 (9:17) might not have made the average either, but they did fare better. Meanwhile, the MacBook Pro 14 crushed them all with 17:16.

Lenovo ThinkPad L13 Yoga Gen 4 webcam

For a built-in webcam, the 1080p sensor in the L13 isn’t bad. Truly, it could be worse, and since this is designed for business use, you’ll look fine in your meetings.

Lenovo ThinkPad L13 Yoga Gen 4 review

(Image credit: Future)

My blue shirt was slightly darker on the display, but it captured the boldness of it quite well. The My Hero Academia poster behind me was blown out a bit by the poor contrast. However, the camera was sharp enough to capture the strands of hair on my head. Despite that, I still recommend taking a look at the best webcams.

Lenovo ThinkPad L13 Yoga Gen 4 heat

At the very least, you won’t have to worry about heat being an issue. After streaming a 15-minute video, the underside climbed to 93 degrees Fahrenheit, which is comfortably below our 95-degree threshold. The center of the keyboard and touchpad hit 83 and 75 degrees, respectively. Meanwhile, the hottest the machine got was 97 degrees on the underside, near the vents.

Lenovo ThinkPad L13 Yoga Gen 4 software and warranty

Lenovo’s got you covered with its branded Vantage app. Within this app, you can customize your computer’s settings, check your warranty, and update your system. You can even perform hardware scans and configure your Wi-Fi security. Thankfully, Lenovo ties up all of its stuff in this one app.

The ThinkPad L13 Yoga comes with a one-year limited warranty. If you’re curious about the level of service and support this includes, then see how Lenovo performed on our most recent Tech Support Showdown rankings.

Bottom line

The Lenovo ThinkPad L13 Yoga Gen 4 isn’t a bad business laptop, it's just a mediocre one. Every single one of its competitors is a better option at around the same price point. They all feature better performance, brighter displays, and longer battery life.

If you want the best of the bunch, I recommend checking out the MacBook Pro 14 — it’s only $140 more than the L13 Yoga and provides so much more battery life, stronger performance, and a stunning display. If you (or your company) demand a ThinkPad, then peruse our best ThinkPads page for several superior options at different price points.

Overall, I wouldn’t pick up the Lenovo ThinkPad L13 Yoga Gen 4 (unless you can find it for 50% off).

Rami Tabari

Rami Tabari is an Editor for Laptop Mag. He reviews every shape and form of a laptop as well as all sorts of cool tech. You can find him sitting at his desk surrounded by a hoarder's dream of laptops, and when he navigates his way out to civilization, you can catch him watching really bad anime or playing some kind of painfully difficult game. He’s the best at every game and he just doesn’t lose. That’s why you’ll occasionally catch his byline attached to the latest Souls-like challenge.