Lenovo's 13-inch ThinkPad Yoga 370 gives business users a powerful 2-in-1 experience in a slightly smaller and less-expensive package than the company's flagship X1 Yoga laptop. Like its pricier sibling, the $1,389 ($1,689 as configured) Yoga 370 combines a best-in-class keyboard with a fantastic built-in stylus, a durable design and plenty of ports. However, the laptop also suffers from a few drawbacks, including below-average battery life and a slow solid-state drive.
The ThinkPad Yoga 370 has the typical ThinkPad aesthetic, with one noteworthy exception: It's available in silver in addition to black. Made from a carbon-fiber hybrid material, the laptop has a matte lid, deck and sides that are smooth but don't have the luxurious soft-touch feel of the ThinkPad X1 Yoga's chassis. Like those of other Lenovo business laptops, the Yoga 370's body is rectangular with a few splashes of extra color offered by the red TrackPoint nub in the keyboard and the silver ThinkPad logos on the lid,deck and their associated blinking red status lights.
Two powerful hinges allow the lid to bend back into tent, stand or tablet modes. The Lift n' Lock keyboard has a tray that raises above the keys when you are in one of these other modes so that you don't accidentally type something while you're holding the device in your hand.
At 3.09 pounds and 12.3 x 8.8 x 0.7 inches, the Yoga 370 is slightly lighter and more compact than the ThinkPad X1 Yoga (3.2 pounds, 13.1 x 9.0 x 0.67 inches), which has a 14-inch screen. However, the 13-inch HP EliteBook x360 G2 (2.8 pounds, 12.5 x 8.6 x 0.58 inches) is noticeably lighter, as are competitors with 12.5-inch screens, such as the Toshiba Portege X20W (2.4 pounds, 11.8 x 8.6 x 0.61 inches) and the Dell Latitude 5289 2-in-1 (3 pounds, 12 x 8.3 x 0.7 inches).
Durability and Security
Like other ThinkPads, the Yoga 370 is made to withstand some punishment. The laptop has passed 12 MIL-SPEC durability tests, including those for shocks and vibrations, along with Lenovo's only bump-and-ding tests.
IT managers will appreciate the ThinkPad Yoga 370's security and manageability features, including discrete TPM 2.0 encryption and a built-in touch fingerprint reader. The 2-in-1 also has optional Intel vPro remote management technology, which you get if you configure it with one of the vPro-compatible CPUs (Core i5-7300U, Core i7-7600U).
MORE: What is vPro?
The ThinkPad Yoga 370's 13.3-inch, 1920 x 1080 touch screen offers sharp images with strong brightness and the ability to reproduce a wide range of colors, but I wish the picture popped a little more. When I watched a trailer for The Last Jedi, fine details, like the curves in Darth Vader's mask and the beads of sweat on Rey's head, were easy to make out. Colors such as the orange in Poe Dameron's flight suit and the green laser blasts in a space fight seemed true-to-life but not overly rich.
The screen's glossy surface is extremely reflective, which limits viewing angles when you have light sources above or behind you. Under the fluorescent lights in my office, images started to fade at 45 degrees to the left and right.
According to our colorimeter, the ThinkPad Yoga 370's screen can reproduce a robust 111 percent of the sRGB color gamut, which is higher than the ultraportable-laptop category average (100 percent) and the Dell Latitude 5289 2-in-1's score (71 percent). The Toshiba Portege X20W (121 percent) was a little more vibrant, while the ThinkPad X1 Yoga (109 percent) and the HP EliteBook x360 G2 (109 percent) were within striking distance of the Yoga 370.
The ThinkPad Yoga 370 measured 320 nits on our light meter, which is much brighter than the category average (290 nits), the X1 Yoga (274 nits), the Latitude 5289 (280 nits) and the EliteBook x360 G2 (239 nits). The Toshiba Portege X20W (345 nits) was even brighter.
The Yoga 370's speakers are loud enough to fill a conference room, but please don't use them to play music, even as part of a presentation. When I listened to AC/DC's "Back in Black," the guitar and drums were so painfully distorted that it felt as though the notebook were stabbing me in the ear with an ice pick. Earth, Wind and Fire's bass-heavy "Shining Star" was less of an aural assault, but also highly inaccurate.
The Lenovo Settings app lets you choose from Music, Movies, Gaming or Voice profiles, all of which sounded poor. Disabling the Dolby audio enhancement, which is on by default, makes the music muffled and distant.
Touch Screen and Pen Experience
The ThinkPad Yoga 370's 13.3-inch touch screen responded immediately to my swipes and gestures, and allowed me to draw with 10 fingers at once, without a hint of lag. The Pen Pro, an active stylus that supports up to 2,048 levels of pressure, conveniently pops into a built-in bay on the right side of the system that not only stores it but keeps it charged up. The golf-pencil-sized stylus was thin and light enough to fit easily between my fingers, and its tip gave me a comfortable amount of friction. Best of all, the pen accurately responded to my movements, as lines appeared thicker or thinner in the Fresh Paint app depending on how hard I pressed on the screen.
Keyboard, TrackPoint and Touchpad
The ThinkPad Yoga 370's keyboard offers the kind of first-class typing experience we've come to expect from Lenovo's business notebooks. With a relatively deep 1.7 millimeters of travel (1.5 to 2 mm is typical) and a strong 70 grams of force required to actuate each key, the keyboard has an extremely responsive, tactile feel. Accordingly, I was able to achieve a rate of 109 words per minute on the 10FastFingers.com typing test with an error rate of just 2 percent error, both of which match my all-time bests.
Like its ThinkPad siblings, the Yoga 370 has both a TrackPoint pointing stick and a touchpad for navigation. I prefer the stick, because it provides extremely accurate navigation without forcing me to lift my hands off of the home row.
The 3.4 x 2.0-inch buttonless touchpad offered accurate navigation as I moved around the desktop, clicked on icons and highlighted text. The Elan-branded pad responded accurately to most gestures, including three-finger swipe, but it sometimes failed to recognize pinch-to-zoom movements, forcing me to repeat them. The surface of the pad itself also felt a little too slippery for my taste.
MORE: Best Laptops Under $500
The ThinkPad Yoga 370 has a solid selection of ports, highlighted by a Thunderbolt 3 connection you can use for data, video-out or a charging port. The right side of the laptop contains a full-size HDMI port, a USB 3.0 connector, a microSD card slot, a Kensington lock slot, a 3.5mm audio jack, the power button and the stylus bay. The left side holds a Thunderbolt 3 port, a mini Ethernet port, a second USB 3.0 port, a proprietary power connector and a smart-card reader.
The ThinkPad Yoga 370 scored a solid mark of 6,588 on Geekbench 4, a synthetic benchmark that measures overall performance. That number is slightly below the ultraportable-laptop category average (6,628) and far less than competitors that we tested with faster CPUs, such as the ThinkPad X1 Yoga (8,514; Core i5-7300U), the HP EliteBook x360 G2 (8,873; Core i7-7600U), the Toshiba Portege X20W (8,862; Core i7-7600U) and the Dell Latitude 5289 (Core i7-7600U; Core i7-7600U).
The Yoga 370 took a quick 4 minutes and 8 seconds to complete our spreadsheet macro test, which matches 20,000 names with their addresses. That's much faster than the 5:51 category average but a bit slower than the X1 Yoga (3:35), the EliteBook x360 G2 (3:16), the Portege X20W (3:16) and the Latitude 5289 (3:54).
Our ThinkPad Yoga 370 was configured with a PCIe solid-state drive, which is supposed to be faster than standard SATA models. However, the laptop's storage performance was very disappointing. The 256GB Toshiba-branded drive copied 4.97GB of files at 145.7 megabytes per second, which is significantly slower than the 218-MBps category average, the HP EliteBook x360 G2 (299.4 MBps), the Toshiba Portege X20W (299.4 MBps), the Latitude 5289 (203.6 MBps) and the X1 Yoga (169.6 MBps).
The 2-in-1 comes with Intel integrated HD 620 graphics, so you can expect good video playback and the ability to play low-end games or edit the occasional video. Just don't think about firing up a demanding title like Grand Theft Auto V. The ThinkPad Yoga 370 scored a solid 60,527 on 3DMark Ice Storm Unlimited, a synthetic benchmark that measures graphics performance. That number is better than the category average (57,685) and the HP Elitebook x360 G2's score (54,800), but worse than the marks from the ThinkPad X1 Yoga (76,248), the Toshiba Portege X20W (70,460) and the Latitude 5289 (74,640).
The Yoga 370 played Dirt 3, a low-end racing game, at 41 frames per second, which is slightly higher than the 39-fps category average and far better than the HP EliteBook x360 G2 (21 fps). The X1 Yoga (54 fps), Toshiba Portege X20w (53 fps) and Latitude 5289 (47 fps) all fared better. (We consider 30 fps and higher to be playable frame rates.)
If you're carrying the ThinkPad Yoga 370 with you, be sure to pack the power brick. Lenovo's 2-in-1 lasted a modest 7 hours and 25 minutes on the Laptop Mag Battery Test, which involves continuous web surfing over Wi-Fi. That time is about an hour less than the ultraportable-laptop category average of 8 hours and 20 minutes, 2.5 hours less than the Latitude 5289 (10:00) and nearly 5 hours behind the ThinkPad X1 Yoga (12:06). The HP EliteBook x360 G2 endured for 9 hours and 17 minutes with its regular display pane, and 7 hours and 30 minutes with its optional privacy screen enabled.
The ThinkPad Yoga 370's top surface stayed cool throughout our tests, but the bottom did get a little warm. After we streamed video for 15 minutes, the keyboard registered 90.5 degrees Fahrenheit, and the touchpad hit 80.5 degrees, both of which are well below our 95-degree comfort threshold. However, the bottom surface reached a somewhat-toasty 99.5 degrees.
The 720p webcam provides solid image quality that's not as good as that of an external camera but is in line with those on most business laptops.
When I shot a selfie in my office, the photo came out bright, and there was less visual noise than we see on most webcams. However, my dark-green shirt seemed a bit faded, and my face was a little splotchy.
Software and Warranty
Lenovo preloads the ThinkPad Yoga 370 with a few useful utilities and a fair amount of bloatware. Lenovo Settings gives you fine control over the audio output, battery, webcam, wireless and other system components. Lenovo Companion looks for updates and provides system health checks.
Keeper is a freemium password manager, but our sister site Tom's Guide recommends LastPass as a better alternative. Autodesk Sketchbook is a digital drawing app that costs a pricey $4.99 a month. There's also a link to download Drawboard PDF, a paid PDF editor. The system also comes with typical Windows 10 bloatware, such as Asphalt 8, Candy Crush Soda Saga, March of Empires: War of Lords and Minecraft: Windows 10 Edition.
Lenovo backs the ThinkPad Yoga 370 with a standard one-year depot warranty, where the company pays for shipping both ways if you need service. You can pay between $19 and $739 extra to extend the warranty term up to five years and add features such as accidental damage protection and on-site service.
The ThinkPad Yoga 370 starts at $1,389 on Lenovo.com, but the same configuration goes for $1,219 on CDW. For that price, you get a Core i5-7200U CPU, a 1920 x 1080 display, 4GB of RAM and a 128GB SSD. If you purchase your laptop on Lenovo.com, you can customize it by choosing from several Core i5 and Core i7 7th-Gen CPUs and selecting up to 16GB of RAM or SSD storage up to 512GB. You can also opt for a silver or black chassis. However, there's no option to get a higher-res screen.
Our $1,689 review configuration has a Core i5-7200U CPU, 8GB of RAM and a 256GB SSD. However, you can sometimes find better prices for pre-configured systems at third-party retailers. At press time, CDW was selling a Yoga 370 with a Core i7 CPU, 8GB of RAM and a 256GB SSD for $1,598 ($90 less for a better CPU).
Versus the ThinkPad X1 Yoga
Though it weighs about 0.1 pound more and has a slightly larger screen, there's little doubt that the 14-inch ThinkPad X1 Yoga is a superior laptop overall, thanks to its much longer battery life, premium soft-touch design and superior port selection. Depending on the configuration and where you shop, the price delta between the Yoga 370 and the X1 Yoga could range from $20 to $300.
At publication time, our review configuration of the Yoga 370 cost $1,689 at Lenovo.com, and a X1 Yoga with identical specs cost only $1,709. However, CDW has a Core i7-based config (8GB, 256GB SSD, Windows 10 Pro) for $1,598, which is more than $200 cheaper than aX1 Yoga ($1,808) with the same specs at Lenovo.com.
From its accurate stylus to its bright screen and tactile keyboard, the ThinkPad Yoga 370 has a lot to offer productivity users who need a powerful 2-in-1 for drawing or scribbling notes. However, this pricey 2-in-1 also has short battery life and small annoyances, like a slow SSD, limited viewing angles and a touchpad that doesn't catch every pinch-to-zoom.
If you can afford to spend a couple hundred dollars more, depending on the configuration, you'd be much better off with the X1 Yoga because of its epic battery life, superior design, better touchpad and dual Thunderbolt 3 ports. However, if you want a powerful 13-inch business 2-in-1 with great build quality, the ThinkPad Yoga 370 is a good choice.