The new Lenovo Slim Pro 9i line is here, and we have a new champion for the lightest RTX 40 series laptop. Coming in from a starting weight of 3.63 pounds, this is far below the previous record holder in the Samsung Galaxy Book 3 Ultra (3.9 pounds).
But beyond its impressive portability, there is a lot more to get excited about here for the new crop of Slim Pro 9is (also known as Yoga Pro 9i in areas outside of North America). So let’s get into it.
1. A 16-inch big sibling appears
So, the biggest bit of news here is, quite literally, big. There’s a 16-inch model alongside the standard 14-inch version.
Yes, this does add a little bit of junk in the trunk, but the company manages to maintain a pretty svelte chassis that rivals the ultrathin likes of the Samsung Galaxy Book 3 Ultra:
|Screen||14.5-inch (LCD)||14.5-inch (Mini LED)||16-inch (LCD)||16-inch (Mini LED)|
|Size||12.9 x 8.8 x 0.67 inches||12.9 x 8.8 x 0.69 inches||14.3 x 9.64 x 0.7 inches||14.3 x 10.2 x 0.71 inches|
|Starting weight||3.63 pounds||3.74 pounds||4.53 pounds||4.91 pounds|
What is most impressive, though, is the compromises are incredibly minimal between the 16 and 14-inch options. In fact, outside of a slightly reduced TGP going to the GPU, everything seems to be the same. Hats off to Lenovo for that!
2. 13th Gen Intel power
We’ve spoken at length about how the 13th Gen Intel Core CPUs are offering impressive speed boosts over last year, and starting to close the gap to Apple silicon. The Lenovo Slim Pro 9i makes the jump to these chips with three choices:
- Intel Core i5-13505H (available on 14-inch only)
- Intel Core i7-13705H
- Intel Core i9-13905H
I feel these are the right choices for creative pros who need a system that can crunch work on-the-go — a good balance of power and efficiency cores for optimizing between performance and stamina (though we’d need to test that ourselves).
3. Mini LED goodness
The next big upgrade is a move from OLED technology to Mini LED, which is Lenovo’s way of taking a step onto the MacBook Pro’s turf. And if the numbers are to be believed in backing up the spec list, we’re in for a visual treat for watching and working.
The 14.5-inch display of the smaller sibling sports a 3.2K resolution (3072 x 1920) 165Hz refresh rate, a 16:10 aspect ratio, a 1200-nit peak brightness, 100% sRGB and 100% P3 color gamut, Dolby vision and a TÜV low blue light certificate for working long into the evening hours.
Up that resolution to 3200 x 2000 in the 16-inch model and you’ve got a pair of absolute beauties, which can be upgraded with optional capacitive touch too.
4. A huge webcam upgrade
Say you go for the Mini LED option. Well, there’s an additional surprise in the form of a 5MP webcam, complete with time of flight shutter, and four microphones for voice pickup and background noise cancellation.
Now, I’m not saying this is going to make this something you can snap high resolution selfies on or fire up OBS to Twitch stream with. However, this is a big step up in quality — especially if you want to be the best looking person on your work’s Zoom call.
5. Not just any RTX 40 series GPU…
We’re seeing two kinds of RTX 40 series laptops at the moment — fully loaded gaming systems and cheaper systems with dedicated graphics that only form a minor upgrade over last generation.
Lenovo joins the Samsung Galaxy Book 3 Ultra in being that optimal middle ground, not just for casual-to-semi-serious gamers, but for creative pros too. The 14-inch version comes with your choice of RTX 4050, 4060 or 4070 (all with an 80W TGP). The 16-inch has the same options — cranked up to a 100W TGP.
Savvy Samsung researchers will already have seen that this is a higher TGP than the Book 3 Ultra (the 14-inch has 20W more, and you can do the math for the 16-inch). And while this does make me a little nervous about the battery life of that 75 Wh cell, it does reassure me that Lenovo is squeezing every last drop of power potential out of these GPUs.
So, to answer the other obvious questions on your mind: both the 14 and 16-inch Lenovo Slim Pro 9i will be available starting at $1,699 and $1,799 respectively, and launching in North America from May.
While the naming conventions will be a little odd across the planet, there’s a lot to get excited about here. Oh, and we didn’t even get to the Lenovo AI Engine+ optimizing performance and battery life, the super ergonomic keyboard with 0.3mm dishes and 1.5mm of travel, upgraded Lenovo X Power for running creative pro apps even faster, an up to 62.5% increase in thermal capacity, and the expansion of I/O to include an SD card slot.
Make no mistake about it. Lenovo is going in hard for the Galaxy Book 3 Ultra, and vying to take the prosumer crown away from the 14 and 16-inch MacBook Pros. Let’s see how they do when we go hands-on with these beasts soon.