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Lenovo ThinkPad X390 Yoga (i7, FHD) Convertible Review

Benjamin Herzig, 👁 Andreas Osthoff (translated by Katherine Bodner), 06/12/2019

A quick-change artist in pinstripes. For the first time since 2015 Lenovo has developed a new case for its business-oriented ThinkPad Yoga convertible. The Lenovo ThinkPad X390 Yoga is slimmer than its predecessor and offers improved CPU performance. However, the convertible lacks several features available in the normal ThinkPad X390. We have done an in-depth review of the convertible laptop with an Intel Whiskey Lake processor.

"ThinkPad Yoga" - the combination of these two Lenovo brands in the shape of a business convertible has been available since 2013. At the time, the ThinkPad Yoga replaced the ThinkPad X230 Tablet (a convertible laptop with rotating hinges) as a compact ThinkPad convertible. Lenovo has since reintegrated the ThinkPad Yoga into the X series. Today's test unit, the Lenovo ThinkPad X390 Yoga, can therefore be considered the convertible version of the ThinkPad X390 and is the more affordable convertible alternative to the ThinkPad X1 Yoga.

The Lenovo ThinkPad X390 Yoga is the successor of last year's ThinkPad X380 Yoga, which was based on the design of the ThinkPad Yoga 260 from 2015. The Lenovo ThinkPad X390 Yoga, however, has a newly designed case. Its main competitors in the area of business convertibles are the HP EliteBook x360 1030 G3 and the Dell Latitude 7390 2-in-1    

Our test unit is not available for most consumers as it is a special model for the Lenovo Campus program. Unlike the normal model, this ThinkPad X390 Yoga does not have the Windows OS preinstalled. It also has a very generous warranty package with premier support. Regular customers can purchase a similar configuration with Windows 10 Pro and the same warranty option for around $1700.

Lenovo ThinkPad X390 Yoga-20NQS05R00 (ThinkPad X390 Yoga Series)
Graphics adapter
Memory
16384 MB 
, DDR4-2400, soldered on
Display
13.3 inch 16:9, 1920 x 1080 pixel 166 PPI, 10 touch points, native pen support, LP133WF7-SPA1, IPS LED, glossy: yes
Mainboard
Intel Cannon Lake-U PCH-LP Premium
Storage
Intel SSD Pro 7600p SSDPEKKF512G8L, 512 GB 
, M.2 2280, PCIe NVMe, 452 GB free
Soundcard
Intel Cannon Lake-H/S - cAVS (Audio, Voice, Speech)
Connections
3 USB 3.0 / 3.1 Gen1, 1 USB 3.1 Gen2, 1 Thunderbolt, 1 HDMI, 2 DisplayPort, 1 Kensington Lock, 1 Docking Station Port, Audio Connections: combined audio jack, Card Reader: microSD, 1 SmartCard, NFC, Sensors: 3D accelerometer, 3D gyroscope
Networking
Intel Ethernet Connection I219-V (10/100/1000/2500/5000MBit/s), Intel Wireless-AC 9560 (a/b/g/n = Wi-Fi 4/ac = Wi-Fi 5), Bluetooth 5.0
Size
height x width x depth (in mm): 15.95 x 310.4 x 219 ( = 0.63 x 12.22 x 8.62 in)
Battery
50 Wh Lithium-Ion
Camera
Webcam: 720p with infrared
Additional features
Speakers: 2 W Stereo, Keyboard: narrow 6 rows bottom-load chiclet , Keyboard Light: yes, 65-W USB C AC adapter. ThinkPad Pen Pro 7, 36 Months Warranty
Weight
1.251 kg ( = 44.13 oz / 2.76 pounds), Power Supply: 341 g ( = 12.03 oz / 0.75 pounds)
Price
1399 Euro
Note: The manufacturer may use components from different suppliers including display panels, drives or memory sticks with similar specifications.

 

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Case

Lenovo ThinkPad X390 Yoga
Lenovo ThinkPad X390 Yoga

The exterior of the Lenovo ThinkPad Yoga X390 is very similar to that of its predecessor, the ThinkPad X380 Yoga, despite having been redesigned. Lenovo has not made any changes to the basic ThinkPad design language: The entire case is black with red stripes on the TrackPoint keys, the characteristic red TrackPoint and the silver hinges and ThinkPad logo with a red dot on the i. Like most current ThinkPads it has a wedge-like shape. Unlike the non-convertible ThinkPad X390, Lenovo has given its ThinkPad X390 Yoga wider, more noticeable hinges that allow the display to be opened to 360 °. They seem to be a little looser than on the non-convertible version, which means that the screen wobbles a bit more. The display cover cannot be opened with one hand. 

Lenovo continues to use the usual mixture of carbon fiber and magnesium. The wrist rest is made of magnesium, while the display cover and bottom of the base unit are reinforced with carbon fiber. This means that the X390 Yoga has more carbon fiber than the non-convertible version ThinkPad X390 and the larger ThinkPad T490s, whose bottom covers are made of magnesium. The device (apart from the glass in front of the screen, of course) is painted a matte black, so the use of different materials is not immediately noticeable. Interestingly enough, the wrist rest of the Lenovo ThinkPad X390 Yoga is quite dirt resistant. Probably Lenovo has chosen a similar varnish to the one used on the ThinkPad T490s.

These materials enable very good stability despite the case being so thin. The base unit can be warped slightly under pressure, but the area around the keyboard does not give way at all and the case itself does not warp particularly when held at a corner. Pressure on the back of the display is not visible on the LCD panel, although the lightweight display cover is noticeably easier to warp than the base unit.

We would like to mention one interesting design change compared to the X380 Yoga: Lenovo has chosen to remove the "Lift&Lock" keyboard, which protected the keys when the device was folded into tablet mode. Instead, the keyboard slips into the base unit, like on the ThinkPad T490s.  

The X390 Yoga has several advantages in terms of dimensions and weight compared to the ThinkPad X380 Yoga. The new model weighs around 100 grams (~3.5 oz) less, is two millimeters (~0.08 in) slimmer and also slightly more compact, which means that the bezels have shrunk a little (screen-to-body ratio X380 Yoga: 69.9%; X390 Yoga: 71.7%). This makes the ThinkPad X390 Yoga a little easier to handle, particularly in tablet mode. Still, the Lenovo ThinkPad laptop cannot keep up with its direct competitors with 13.3-inch screens. Both the Dell Latitude 7390 2-in-1 and the HP EliteBook x360 1030 G3 are more compact.

The ThinkPad X1 Yoga 2018, however, is significantly larger, but then this device is equipped with a larger 14-inch display. In addition, the reworked 2019 version of the X1 Yoga will be released this summer - and its case is sure to be more compact.

Size Comparison

333 mm / 13.1 inch 229 mm / 9.02 inch 17.05 mm / 0.671 inch 1.4 kg3.14 lbs313.5 mm / 12.3 inch 222.2 mm / 8.75 inch 18.2 mm / 0.717 inch 1.4 kg3.15 lbs310.4 mm / 12.2 inch 219 mm / 8.62 inch 15.95 mm / 0.628 inch 1.3 kg2.76 lbs306 mm / 12 inch 211 mm / 8.31 inch 20 mm / 0.787 inch 1.4 kg3.18 lbs305.8 mm / 12 inch 205 mm / 8.07 inch 15.8 mm / 0.622 inch 1.3 kg2.78 lbs

Connectivity

The Lenovo ThinkPad X390 Yoga is the first ThinkPad Yoga device that supports the same mechanical docking stations as other business ThinkPads of the T, X and L series. This is possible because Lenovo has now included its side docking port, consisting of two USB C ports (one of which supports Thunderbolt 3) and a proprietary miniEthernet port, in the convertibles port selection. Instead, the ThinkPad X390 Yoga no longer has the proprietary Slim Tip charging port, which was used on the ThinkPad Yoga X380. The X390 Yoga now has an additional USB C port while the predecessor only had one single Thunderbolt 3 port. 

left: USB 3.1 Gen 1 Type C, Thunderbolt 3, miniEthernet, USB 3.0 Type A, combined audio jack, smart card reader
left: USB 3.1 Gen 1 Type C, Thunderbolt 3, miniEthernet, USB 3.0 Type A, combined audio jack, smart card reader
right: Digitizer pen, microSD card reader, USB 3.0 Type A, HDMI, Kensington Lock
right: Digitizer pen, microSD card reader, USB 3.0 Type A, HDMI, Kensington Lock

SD card reader

Like its predecessor, the ThinkPad X390 Yoga is equipped with a microSD card reader on the right side of its case. The fact that Lenovo has not equipped a compact convertible like the X390 Yoga with a full-fledged SD card reader is more acceptable than on the larger ThinkPad T490, for instance. At least the card reader is easily accessible during use - unlike on the non-convertible ThinkPad X390.    

The performance of the microSD card reader is average and corresponds to that of its predecessor. The Dell Latitude 7390 2-in-1 and ThinkPad X1 Yoga 2018 managed faster transfer rates in our benchmark with the Toshiba Exceria Pro M501 reference card. The HP EliteBook x360 1030 G3 is the only business convertible in our comparison that is not equipped with an SD card reader.  

SDCardreader Transfer Speed
average JPG Copy Test (av. of 3 runs)
Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Yoga 2018-20LES01W00
  (Toshiba Exceria Pro M501)
191.1 MB/s ∼100% +135%
Dell Latitude 7390 2-in-1
  (Toshiba Exceria Pro M501 UHS-II)
166.24 MB/s ∼87% +104%
Lenovo ThinkPad X390 Yoga-20NQS05R00
  (Toshiba Exceria Pro M501)
81.4 MB/s ∼43%
Lenovo ThinkPad X380 Yoga 20LJS02W00
  (Toshiba Exceria Pro SDXC 64 GB UHS-II)
61.9 MB/s ∼32% -24%
Average of class Convertible
  (7.5 - 197, n=131)
61.9 MB/s ∼32% -24%
maximum AS SSD Seq Read Test (1GB)
Dell Latitude 7390 2-in-1
  (Toshiba Exceria Pro M501 UHS-II)
229.6 MB/s ∼100% +171%
Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Yoga 2018-20LES01W00
  (Toshiba Exceria Pro M501)
223.9 MB/s ∼98% +165%
Lenovo ThinkPad X380 Yoga 20LJS02W00
  (Toshiba Exceria Pro SDXC 64 GB UHS-II)
87.8 MB/s ∼38% +4%
Lenovo ThinkPad X390 Yoga-20NQS05R00
  (Toshiba Exceria Pro M501)
84.6 MB/s ∼37%
Average of class Convertible
  (19.2 - 246, n=128)
77.1 MB/s ∼34% -9%

Communication

What would a business convertible without a large variety of communication options be? Probably a very bad business convertible. After all, there are a lot of business travelers who have to be constantly connected to the internet. The Lenovo ThinkPad X390 Yoga can offer Wi-Fi (Intel Wireless-AC 9560), Bluetooth 5.0, native ethernet (Intel I219-V; via an adapter or dock) and optional WWAN. However, the latter is not available in our test unit and cannot be retrofitted either. The X390 Yoga also supports NFC and a configuration with Wi-Fi 6 (Intel Wi-Fi 6 AX200) has been announced. The 2x2 AC WLAN module in our test unit did a good job in our benchmarks and did not show any weaknesses during day-to-day use either. 

The webcam and microphone are of typical laptop quality. They are good enough for video conference calls, but nothing more.

Networking
iperf3 Client (receive) TCP 1 m 4M x10
Lenovo ThinkPad X390 Yoga-20NQS05R00
Intel Wireless-AC 9560
644 MBit/s ∼100%
Dell Latitude 7390 2-in-1
Intel Dual Band Wireless-AC 8265
639 MBit/s ∼99% -1%
Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Yoga 2018-20LES01W00
Intel Dual Band Wireless-AC 8265
633 MBit/s ∼98% -2%
HP EliteBook x360 1030 G3
Intel Dual Band Wireless-AC 8265
627 MBit/s ∼97% -3%
Lenovo ThinkPad X380 Yoga 20LJS02W00
Intel Dual Band Wireless-AC 8265
517 MBit/s ∼80% -20%
Average of class Convertible
  (28.7 - 688, n=147)
490 MBit/s ∼76% -24%
iperf3 Client (transmit) TCP 1 m 4M x10
Lenovo ThinkPad X390 Yoga-20NQS05R00
Intel Wireless-AC 9560
680 MBit/s ∼100%
Lenovo ThinkPad X380 Yoga 20LJS02W00
Intel Dual Band Wireless-AC 8265
666 MBit/s ∼98% -2%
Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Yoga 2018-20LES01W00
Intel Dual Band Wireless-AC 8265
511 MBit/s ∼75% -25%
HP EliteBook x360 1030 G3
Intel Dual Band Wireless-AC 8265
502 MBit/s ∼74% -26%
Dell Latitude 7390 2-in-1
Intel Dual Band Wireless-AC 8265
495 MBit/s ∼73% -27%
Average of class Convertible
  (36.4 - 743, n=147)
495 MBit/s ∼73% -27%

Security

Our test unit is equipped with all available security features. These include a smart card reader, a touch fingerprint reader, a Kensington Lock slot and an infrared camera for logging in via Windows Hello. The webcam also has the ThinkShutter, a mechanical camera cover - this was not included in the predecessor. The X390 Yoga can also be equipped with Intel vPro and supports TPM 2.0.

Accessories

Apart from the 65-watt USB C power supply, the Lenovo ThinkPad X390 Yoga also comes with a Digitizer pen - the ThinkPad Pen Pro 7. We will go into more detail on this function in our section on input devices.

The most important optional accessories are the docking stations. Apart from Thunderbolt 3 docks and USB C docks that can be connected via cable, users can now also connect mechanical docks such as the ThinkPad CS18 Ultra Dock. This is the first time this is possible on a ThinkPad Yoga convertible and should be particularly interesting for large companies as they can now use the same docking stations on a series of different ThinkPad laptops such as the ThinkPad X390 Yoga, ThinkPad T490ThinkPad L580 and ThinkPad X1 Carbon. 

Maintenance

Luckily, the Lenovo ThinkPad X390 Yoga is fairly easy to open up. You only need to loosen eight screws (they remain in the case) and then use a spudger or similar tool to unhinge the clips on the back edge of the case - this is not too difficult. Once the bottom cover is removed, you have access to all internal components. You can clean the cooling fans, for example, reapply heat paste or exchange the battery, which is secured by simple screws.

Most of the components of the Lenovo ThinkPad convertible cannot be upgraded. While the M.2 2280 SSD can be exchanged, the RAM is firmly soldered on, as is the Wi-Fi card in this configuration (thanks to Intel's CNVi technology). Our test unit is not prepared for a WWAN module.

A look inside
A look inside

Warranty

Our configuration of the ThinkPad X390 Yoga has a three-year warranty with on-site service and premier support. This warranty offer is already very generous and can even be extended by two more years and expanded to include accident protection. Although we should mention that this is not the case for every model of the ThinkPad X390. While most configurations come with a three-year warranty, this does not always include on-site service or premier support, which can be purchased separately if that is the case.

Input Devices

Keyboard

No changes have been made to the basic keyboard design. The ThinkPad X390 Yoga is equipped with the typical ThinkPad chiclet keyboard with six key rows, concave, rounded keys and two-level backlighting. As mentioned previously, the Yoga is equipped with a smaller version of the keyboard, which means that the keys are smaller than on a ThinkPad T490s, for example. This reduced layout might take some time to get used to if you usually use full-width keyboards. The way the keyboard is integrated into the case is similar to the ThinkPad T490s: It is a "bottom load" keyboard, which means that it is attached to the frame from beneath. This increases stability and looks more attractive. but makes exchanging the keyboard a little more difficult.

Typically for a ThinkPad the keyboard is very good, has generous travel (1.7 mm/~0.07 in) and a very comfortable pressure point (not too soft, not too hard). Provided you can get used to the smaller layout, the ThinkPad Y390 Yoga is one of the best laptop keyboards available for regular typing.

Keyboard of the Lenovo ThinkPad X390 Yoga
Keyboard of the Lenovo ThinkPad X390 Yoga

Touchpad & Pointing Stick

The touchpad has a similar size to the one on the ThinkPad X280 (10 x 5.6 cm/~4 x 2.2 in) while it is about 1 cm (~0.4 in) longer on the normal Lenovo ThinkPad X390. There would have been sufficient space below the touchpad for a larger version - but perhaps Lenovo has made the touchpad small on purpose to facilitate using the tablet mode. Of course, the larger touchpad would have been useful for laptop mode, but the available touchpad is sufficiently large, nonetheless. The touch surface is made of smooth plastic with good gliding properties. A glass touchpad - as can be found on the ThinkPad X1 Yoga - is even more easy to use, however. 

The touchpad on the X390 Yoga is a ClickPad, which means that instead of dedicated mouse keys it has an integrated clicking mechanism. This works very well and produces quiet, muffled clicking sounds. Overall we are quite happy with the touchpad, particularly thanks to the smooth Windows Precision driver.

As on (almost) all ThinkPads, the TrackPoint pointing stick is positioned between the keys b, g and h. It has a red top made of rubber - the model in our test unit was made by Synaptics. The TrackPoint enables users to move the cursor precisely and quickly while leaving their hands on the keyboard. The three accompanying keys below the keyboard and above the touchpad have short travel and a crisp pressure point. They work well and are relatively quiet, although for some reason the right TrackPoint key is slightly louder than the left one on our model. 

ThinkPad UltraNav: TrackPoint + Touchpad
ThinkPad UltraNav: TrackPoint + Touchpad

Touchscreen & Digitizer pen

As this is a convertible that can be used in tablet mode, it must obviously be equipped with a touchscreen. It can recognize up to 10 fingers simultaneously and worked perfectly during testing.

Unlike most convertible laptops for consumers the Lenovo ThinkPad X390 Yoga additionally comes with a Digitizer pen. This can even be inserted into the case, which is rather unusual nowadays. The included ThinkPad Pen Pro 7 (accessory number 4X80U9063) is recharged when placed in the case, which means that you will not be changing batteries. The Digitizer comes from Wacom (AES technology) and is supposed to recognize 4096 pressure levels. The pen worked perfectly during our test and remained precise even at the edges of the screen. The two buttons on the pen were a little more difficult to use, however, as they are very flat and hard to find by touch. The pen is also comparatively slim, in order to fit into the case.

Integrated Digitizer pen
Integrated Digitizer pen
Testing the Digitizer pen
Testing the Digitizer pen

Display

Subpixel array LP133WF7-SPA1
Subpixel array LP133WF7-SPA1
Hardy any backlight bleeding (high exposure)
Hardy any backlight bleeding (high exposure)

Unlike the non-convertible ThinkPad X390, the Lenovo ThinkPad X390 Yoga only has one screen option: a 13.3-inch IPS display with Full HD resolution (1920x1080). The screen has a shiny surface (with a light anti-reflective coating) and is supposed to reach 300 cd/m² according to Lenovo. As with the normal X390, there is no option with a higher resolution, but unlike the non-convertible version the Yoga does not offer an option with higher brightness either. The ThinkPad X390 will be equipped with a privacy display with 400 cd/m² in future. For whatever reason, Lenovo is not planning to offer this screen option for its ThinkPad X390 Yoga  

The LG LCD in our device has an average brightness of 306 cd/m², which is slightly better than promised and just as bright as the Dell Latitude 7390 2-in-1. The panel on the HP EliteBook x360 1030 G3, however, is significantly brighter at 443 cd/m². It might have been a good idea for Lenovo to at least offer the brighter privacy display as an option.     

The display brightness is evenly distributed and we hardly noticed any backlight bleeding. The display does not use PWM for brightness regulation.

286
cd/m²
299
cd/m²
295
cd/m²
303
cd/m²
319
cd/m²
312
cd/m²
317
cd/m²
316
cd/m²
311
cd/m²
Distribution of brightness
LP133WF7-SPA1
X-Rite i1Pro 2
Maximum: 319 cd/m² Average: 306.4 cd/m² Minimum: 2.9 cd/m²
Brightness Distribution: 90 %
Center on Battery: 318 cd/m²
Contrast: 2127:1 (Black: 0.15 cd/m²)
ΔE Color 6.1 | 0.6-29.43 Ø6, calibrated: 1
ΔE Greyscale 8.6 | 0.64-98 Ø6.2
96.8% sRGB (Argyll 3D) 61.9% AdobeRGB 1998 (Argyll 3D)
Gamma: 2.62
Lenovo ThinkPad X390 Yoga-20NQS05R00
LP133WF7-SPA1, , 1920x1080, 13.3
Lenovo ThinkPad X380 Yoga 20LJS02W00
Lenovo M133NWF4 R3, , 1920x1080, 13.3
HP EliteBook x360 1030 G3
Chi Mei CMN1380, , 1920x1080, 13.3
Dell Latitude 7390 2-in-1
AUO462D, , 1920x1080, 13.3
Lenovo ThinkPad X390-20Q1S02M00
LP133WF7-SPB1, , 1920x1080, 13.3
Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Yoga 2018-20LD0015US
Lenovo LEN40A9, , 1920x1080, 14
Response Times
11%
26%
10%
-4%
19%
Response Time Grey 50% / Grey 80% *
59.2 (30, 29.2)
50 (24, 26)
16%
39.2 (20.4, 18.8)
34%
48.8 (23.6, 25.2)
18%
57.6 (28.4, 29.2)
3%
40.4 (22.4, 18)
32%
Response Time Black / White *
30.8 (16.8, 14)
29 (15, 14)
6%
25.6 (14, 11.6)
17%
30.4 (16.4, 14)
1%
34 (18.4, 15.6)
-10%
28.8 (17.2, 11.6)
6%
PWM Frequency
1000 (90)
26040 (62)
Screen
-2%
0%
-37%
12%
-30%
Brightness middle
319
314
-2%
470.1
47%
318.2
0%
356
12%
267.2
-16%
Brightness
306
302
-1%
443
45%
312
2%
336
10%
239
-22%
Brightness Distribution
90
84
-7%
88
-2%
83
-8%
88
-2%
75
-17%
Black Level *
0.15
0.16
-7%
0.38
-153%
0.3
-100%
0.16
-7%
0.27
-80%
Contrast
2127
1963
-8%
1237
-42%
1061
-50%
2225
5%
990
-53%
Colorchecker DeltaE2000 *
6.1
5.73
6%
2.47
60%
4.25
30%
3.6
41%
3.5
43%
Colorchecker DeltaE2000 max. *
9.7
10.43
-8%
5.73
41%
9.49
2%
5.5
43%
6.4
34%
Colorchecker DeltaE2000 calibrated *
1
1.52
-52%
4.38
-338%
1.1
-10%
3.81
-281%
Greyscale DeltaE2000 *
8.6
7.39
14%
3.7
57%
2.1
76%
4.7
45%
1.3
85%
Gamma
2.62 84%
2.14 103%
2.35 94%
2.311 95%
2.48 89%
2.146 103%
CCT
6613 98%
6351 102%
7373 88%
6588 99%
6374 102%
6523 100%
Color Space (Percent of AdobeRGB 1998)
61.9
61
-1%
62
0%
56
-10%
61.3
-1%
56
-10%
Color Space (Percent of sRGB)
96.8
96
-1%
98.2
1%
85
-12%
95.7
-1%
86
-11%
Total Average (Program / Settings)
5% / 1%
13% / 4%
-14% / -30%
4% / 10%
-6% / -22%

* ... smaller is better

Colors
Colors
Saturation
Saturation
Grayscales
Grayscales
Colors (after calibration)
Colors (after calibration)
Saturation (after calibration)
Saturation (after calibration)
Grayscales (after calibration)
Grayscales (after calibration)

The LG display in our test unit has an extremely good contrast ratio of 2127:1 and therefore a low black value of 0.15 cd/m². Once the screen is calibrated, these values ensure great image quality and vivid colors. Before calibration, we noticed a green cast that distorted images slightly. As always, you can download our color profile for calibration for free above. Unfortunately, the calibration cannot improve response times, which are quite bad on this panel. This is particularly noticeable during fast movements of the cursor as it appears smudged.  

Luckily the sRGB color space is covered almost entirely. At 96% coverage this display is suitable for semi-professional image processing and displays most colors correctly after calibration.

sRGB: 96.8%
sRGB: 96.8%
AdobeRGB: 61.9%
AdobeRGB: 61.9%
Outdoors (shade)
Outdoors (shade)
Outdoors (sun)
Outdoors (sun)

The shiny display surface makes it very difficult to use the device outdoors as bothersome reflections are noticeable even in shade. A higher brightness would have improved this significantly as 300 cd/m² simply are not enough to outweigh reflections.

Display Response Times

Display response times show how fast the screen is able to change from one color to the next. Slow response times can lead to afterimages and can cause moving objects to appear blurry (ghosting). Gamers of fast-paced 3D titles should pay special attention to fast response times.
       Response Time Black to White
30.8 ms ... rise ↗ and fall ↘ combined↗ 16.8 ms rise
↘ 14 ms fall
The screen shows slow response rates in our tests and will be unsatisfactory for gamers.
In comparison, all tested devices range from 0.8 (minimum) to 240 (maximum) ms. » 78 % of all devices are better.
This means that the measured response time is worse than the average of all tested devices (24.9 ms).
       Response Time 50% Grey to 80% Grey
59.2 ms ... rise ↗ and fall ↘ combined↗ 30 ms rise
↘ 29.2 ms fall
The screen shows slow response rates in our tests and will be unsatisfactory for gamers.
In comparison, all tested devices range from 0.9 (minimum) to 636 (maximum) ms. » 94 % of all devices are better.
This means that the measured response time is worse than the average of all tested devices (39.7 ms).

Screen Flickering / PWM (Pulse-Width Modulation)

To dim the screen, some notebooks will simply cycle the backlight on and off in rapid succession - a method called Pulse Width Modulation (PWM) . This cycling frequency should ideally be undetectable to the human eye. If said frequency is too low, users with sensitive eyes may experience strain or headaches or even notice the flickering altogether.
Screen flickering / PWM not detected

In comparison: 51 % of all tested devices do not use PWM to dim the display. If PWM was detected, an average of 9365 (minimum: 43 - maximum: 142900) Hz was measured.

The viewing angles are very good as this is an IPS display. If you look at the screen from the side or from above/below, you will notice a minor loss in brightness while colors remain stable. We did not notice the IPS glow effect which causes a slight color cast on some IPS displays.

Viewing angles LP133WF7-SPA1
Viewing angles LP133WF7-SPA1

Performance

The Lenovo ThinkPad X390 Yoga is available with four different Intel processors: The Core i5-8265U, the Core i5-8365U, the Core i7-8565U or the Core i7-8665U. The graphics unit is always an Intel UHD Graphics 620. The processors have either 8 or 16 GB of DDR4 2400 RAM available, which is always soldered on. Unfortunately, there is no 32-GB option like on the normal ThinkPad X390. The storage device is always a single M.2 SSD, although there are both PCIe NVMe and SATA III versions available. The capacity of the storage devices range from 128, 256 and 512 GB to 1 TB. 

HWiNFO
HWiNFO
CPU-Z
CPU-Z
CPU-Z Caches
CPU-Z Caches
CPU-Z Mainboard
CPU-Z Mainboard
GPU-Z
GPU-Z
LatencyMon
LatencyMon
 
 

Processor

The Intel Core i7-8565U is a Whiskey Lake processor with four cores and a nominal TDP of 15 watts. Its clock rate ranges from 1.8 to 4.6 GHz. You can compare this chip to other processors here.    

The predecessor ThinkPad X380 Yoga was the last ThinkPad generation's worst performer. Its performance dropped to the level of the earlier dual-core processors under continuous load. This is no longer the case in the ThinkPad X390 Yoga. The device can keep up a decent performance even under continuous load and has a higher CPU performance than the HP EliteBook x360 1030 G3. The Dell Latitude 7390 2-in-1 performs even better, so does the normal ThinkPad X390 and the larger ThinkPad X1 Yoga 2018 

The processor in the X390 Yoga can consume up to 30 watts for a short time, but then limits consumption to 20 watts. Consumption drops further in the second round and reaches 15 watts with the processor clocking at around 2.2 GHz. Interestingly enough, the ThinkPad X390 Yoga remains cooler while idling on battery mode, no matter which energy profile is active. We did not notice a limit in performance when running on battery. There was no throttling when running the Cinebench test in tablet mode either.

0102030405060708090100110120130140150160170180190200210220230240250260270280290300310320330340350360370380390400410420430440450460470480490500510520530540550560570580590600610620630640650660670680690Tooltip
Lenovo ThinkPad X390 Yoga-20NQS05R00 Intel Core i7-8565U, Intel Core i7-8565U: Ø517 (498.14-623.19)
Lenovo ThinkPad X380 Yoga 20LJS02W00 Intel Core i7-8550U, Intel Core i7-8550U: Ø382 (318.22-509.19)
HP EliteBook x360 1030 G3 Intel Core i5-8250U, Intel Core i5-8250U: Ø483 (463.47-532.04)
Dell Latitude 7390 2-in-1 Intel Core i7-8650U, Intel Core i7-8650U: Ø545 (526.15-584.27)
Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Yoga 2018-20LES01W00 Intel Core i7-8550U, Intel Core i7-8550U: Ø607 (551.32-678.21)
Lenovo ThinkPad X390-20Q1S02M00 Intel Core i5-8265U, Intel Core i5-8265U: Ø569 (552-686)
Cinebench R15
CPU Single 64Bit
Lenovo ThinkPad X390 Yoga-20NQS05R00
Intel Core i7-8565U
179 Points ∼100%
Average Intel Core i7-8565U
  (73.1 - 193, n=48)
171 Points ∼96% -4%
Dell Latitude 7390 2-in-1
Intel Core i7-8650U
169 Points ∼94% -6%
Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Yoga 2018-20LES01W00
Intel Core i7-8550U
168 Points ∼94% -6%
Lenovo ThinkPad X390-20Q1S02M00
Intel Core i5-8265U
158 Points ∼88% -12%
Lenovo ThinkPad X380 Yoga 20LJS02W00
Intel Core i7-8550U
155 Points ∼87% -13%
Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Yoga 2018-20LD0015US
Intel Core i5-8250U
141 Points ∼79% -21%
HP EliteBook x360 1030 G3
Intel Core i5-8250U
141 Points ∼79% -21%
Average of class Convertible
  (19 - 179, n=302)
105 Points ∼59% -41%
CPU Multi 64Bit
Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Yoga 2018-20LES01W00
Intel Core i7-8550U
699 Points ∼100% +36%
Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Yoga 2018-20LD0015US
Intel Core i5-8250U
670 Points ∼96% +31%
Average Intel Core i7-8565U
  (361 - 815, n=49)
585 Points ∼84% +14%
Lenovo ThinkPad X390-20Q1S02M00
Intel Core i5-8265U
569 (min: 552, max: 686) Points ∼81% +11%
Dell Latitude 7390 2-in-1
Intel Core i7-8650U
560 Points ∼80% +9%
Lenovo ThinkPad X390 Yoga-20NQS05R00
Intel Core i7-8565U
513 (min: 498.14, max: 623.19) Points ∼73%
Lenovo ThinkPad X380 Yoga 20LJS02W00
Intel Core i7-8550U
509 Points ∼73% -1%
HP EliteBook x360 1030 G3
Intel Core i5-8250U
493 Points ∼71% -4%
Average of class Convertible
  (33 - 830, n=310)
300 Points ∼43% -42%
Cinebench R15 CPU Multi 64Bit
513 Points
Cinebench R15 OpenGL 64Bit
50.9 fps
Cinebench R15 Ref. Match 64Bit
98 %
Cinebench R15 CPU Single 64Bit
179 Points
Help

System Performance

The system performance is very good. This is reflected in the PCMark benchmark results in which the ThinkPad X390 Yoga reaches decent results as expected.

PCMark 10
Digital Content Creation
Lenovo ThinkPad X390-20Q1S02M00
UHD Graphics 620, 8265U, Intel SSD Pro 7600p SSDPEKKF512G8L
3050 Points ∼100% +1%
Lenovo ThinkPad X390 Yoga-20NQS05R00
UHD Graphics 620, 8565U, Intel SSD Pro 7600p SSDPEKKF512G8L
3005 Points ∼99%
Average Intel Core i7-8565U, Intel UHD Graphics 620
  (2264 - 3370, n=19)
2947 Points ∼97% -2%
Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Yoga 2018-20LD0015US
UHD Graphics 620, 8250U, Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB512HAJQ
2941 Points ∼96% -2%
HP EliteBook x360 1030 G3
UHD Graphics 620, 8250U, Samsung PM871b MZNLN128HAHQ
2855 Points ∼94% -5%
Dell Latitude 7390 2-in-1
UHD Graphics 620, 8650U, SK hynix PC401 NVMe 500 GB
2733 Points ∼90% -9%
Average of class Convertible
  (605 - 4342, n=100)
2492 Points ∼82% -17%
Lenovo ThinkPad X380 Yoga 20LJS02W00
UHD Graphics 620, 8550U, Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB512HAJQ
2467 Points ∼81% -18%
Productivity
Lenovo ThinkPad X390 Yoga-20NQS05R00
UHD Graphics 620, 8565U, Intel SSD Pro 7600p SSDPEKKF512G8L
7066 Points ∼100%
Lenovo ThinkPad X380 Yoga 20LJS02W00
UHD Graphics 620, 8550U, Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB512HAJQ
6791 Points ∼96% -4%
Average Intel Core i7-8565U, Intel UHD Graphics 620
  (3381 - 7588, n=19)
6688 Points ∼95% -5%
Lenovo ThinkPad X390-20Q1S02M00
UHD Graphics 620, 8265U, Intel SSD Pro 7600p SSDPEKKF512G8L
6273 Points ∼89% -11%
Dell Latitude 7390 2-in-1
UHD Graphics 620, 8650U, SK hynix PC401 NVMe 500 GB
6006 Points ∼85% -15%
HP EliteBook x360 1030 G3
UHD Graphics 620, 8250U, Samsung PM871b MZNLN128HAHQ
5739 Points ∼81% -19%
Average of class Convertible
  (1121 - 7179, n=102)
5266 Points ∼75% -25%
Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Yoga 2018-20LD0015US
UHD Graphics 620, 8250U, Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB512HAJQ
5099 Points ∼72% -28%
Essentials
Lenovo ThinkPad X390 Yoga-20NQS05R00
UHD Graphics 620, 8565U, Intel SSD Pro 7600p SSDPEKKF512G8L
9029 Points ∼100%
HP EliteBook x360 1030 G3
UHD Graphics 620, 8250U, Samsung PM871b MZNLN128HAHQ
8356 Points ∼93% -7%
Average Intel Core i7-8565U, Intel UHD Graphics 620
  (5450 - 9029, n=19)
8242 Points ∼91% -9%
Lenovo ThinkPad X390-20Q1S02M00
UHD Graphics 620, 8265U, Intel SSD Pro 7600p SSDPEKKF512G8L
7982 Points ∼88% -12%
Lenovo ThinkPad X380 Yoga 20LJS02W00
UHD Graphics 620, 8550U, Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB512HAJQ
7763 Points ∼86% -14%
Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Yoga 2018-20LD0015US
UHD Graphics 620, 8250U, Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB512HAJQ
7509 Points ∼83% -17%
Dell Latitude 7390 2-in-1
UHD Graphics 620, 8650U, SK hynix PC401 NVMe 500 GB
7213 Points ∼80% -20%
Average of class Convertible
  (2489 - 9678, n=102)
6963 Points ∼77% -23%
Score
Lenovo ThinkPad X390 Yoga-20NQS05R00
UHD Graphics 620, 8565U, Intel SSD Pro 7600p SSDPEKKF512G8L
4134 Points ∼100%
Average Intel Core i7-8565U, Intel UHD Graphics 620
  (2486 - 4178, n=19)
3907 Points ∼95% -5%
Lenovo ThinkPad X390-20Q1S02M00
UHD Graphics 620, 8265U, Intel SSD Pro 7600p SSDPEKKF512G8L
3832 Points ∼93% -7%
Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Yoga 2018-20LES01W00
UHD Graphics 620, 8550U, Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB512HAJQ
3829 Points ∼93% -7%
HP EliteBook x360 1030 G3
UHD Graphics 620, 8250U, Samsung PM871b MZNLN128HAHQ
3695 Points ∼89% -11%
Lenovo ThinkPad X380 Yoga 20LJS02W00
UHD Graphics 620, 8550U, Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB512HAJQ
3632 Points ∼88% -12%
Dell Latitude 7390 2-in-1
UHD Graphics 620, 8650U, SK hynix PC401 NVMe 500 GB
3520 Points ∼85% -15%
Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Yoga 2018-20LD0015US
UHD Graphics 620, 8250U, Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB512HAJQ
3461 Points ∼84% -16%
Average of class Convertible
  (872 - 4677, n=103)
3180 Points ∼77% -23%
PCMark 8
Work Score Accelerated v2
Lenovo ThinkPad X390 Yoga-20NQS05R00
UHD Graphics 620, 8565U, Intel SSD Pro 7600p SSDPEKKF512G8L
5071 Points ∼100%
Dell Latitude 7390 2-in-1
UHD Graphics 620, 8650U, SK hynix PC401 NVMe 500 GB
4978 Points ∼98% -2%
Lenovo ThinkPad X390-20Q1S02M00
UHD Graphics 620, 8265U, Intel SSD Pro 7600p SSDPEKKF512G8L
4896 Points ∼97% -3%
Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Yoga 2018-20LD0015US
UHD Graphics 620, 8250U, Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB512HAJQ
4823 Points ∼95% -5%
Average Intel Core i7-8565U, Intel UHD Graphics 620
  (3596 - 5189, n=17)
4733 Points ∼93% -7%
Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Yoga 2018-20LES01W00
UHD Graphics 620, 8550U, Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB512HAJQ
4719 Points ∼93% -7%
Lenovo ThinkPad X380 Yoga 20LJS02W00
UHD Graphics 620, 8550U, Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB512HAJQ
4656 Points ∼92% -8%
HP EliteBook x360 1030 G3
UHD Graphics 620, 8250U, Samsung PM871b MZNLN128HAHQ
4336 Points ∼86% -14%
Average of class Convertible
  (1007 - 5281, n=230)
3744 Points ∼74% -26%
Home Score Accelerated v2
Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Yoga 2018-20LD0015US
UHD Graphics 620, 8250U, Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB512HAJQ
3946 Points ∼100% +8%
Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Yoga 2018-20LES01W00
UHD Graphics 620, 8550U, Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB512HAJQ
3824 Points ∼97% +4%
Dell Latitude 7390 2-in-1
UHD Graphics 620, 8650U, SK hynix PC401 NVMe 500 GB
3760 Points ∼95% +3%
Lenovo ThinkPad X380 Yoga 20LJS02W00
UHD Graphics 620, 8550U, Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB512HAJQ
3687 Points ∼93% +1%
Lenovo ThinkPad X390 Yoga-20NQS05R00
UHD Graphics 620, 8565U, Intel SSD Pro 7600p SSDPEKKF512G8L
3668 Points ∼93%
Lenovo ThinkPad X390-20Q1S02M00
UHD Graphics 620, 8265U, Intel SSD Pro 7600p SSDPEKKF512G8L
3629 Points ∼92% -1%
Average Intel Core i7-8565U, Intel UHD Graphics 620
  (2577 - 4179, n=18)
3528 Points ∼89% -4%
HP EliteBook x360 1030 G3
UHD Graphics 620, 8250U, Samsung PM871b MZNLN128HAHQ
3453 Points ∼88% -6%
Average of class Convertible
  (741 - 4741, n=278)
2801 Points ∼71% -24%
PCMark 8 Home Score Accelerated v2
3668 points
PCMark 8 Work Score Accelerated v2
5071 points
Help

Storage Devices

The insides of the ThinkPad X390 Yoga harbor an M.2 2280 SSD that serves as the single storage device. In our test unit this is an Intel SSD Pro 7600p. This is an extremely fast PCIe NVMe SSD that is only minimally slower than the Samsung PM981 (one of the fastest SSDs that is often used by manufacturers) according to our benchmarks.

Lenovo ThinkPad X390 Yoga-20NQS05R00
Intel SSD Pro 7600p SSDPEKKF512G8L
Lenovo ThinkPad X380 Yoga 20LJS02W00
Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB512HAJQ
HP EliteBook x360 1030 G3
Samsung PM871b MZNLN128HAHQ
Dell Latitude 7390 2-in-1
SK hynix PC401 NVMe 500 GB
Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Yoga 2018-20LES01W00
Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB512HAJQ
Lenovo ThinkPad X390-20Q1S02M00
Intel SSD Pro 7600p SSDPEKKF512G8L
Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Yoga 2018-20LD0015US
Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB512HAJQ
Average Intel SSD Pro 7600p SSDPEKKF512G8L
 
CrystalDiskMark 5.2 / 6
3%
-65%
-8%
6%
-11%
-20%
-8%
Write 4K
144.1
135.9
-6%
64.28
-55%
131.7
-9%
138.8
-4%
120.7
-16%
122.1
-15%
134 (121 - 154, n=5)
-7%
Read 4K
63.53
34.13
-46%
46.01
-28%
45.21
-29%
58.52
-8%
44.38
-30%
59.1 (45.6 - 66.4, n=5)
-7%
Write Seq
1496
1683
13%
466.4
-69%
1256
-16%
1896
27%
1491
0%
1253
-16%
1378 (846 - 1561, n=5)
-8%
Read Seq
2677
2195
-18%
498.3
-81%
1852
-31%
2070
-23%
2760
3%
1232
-54%
2341 (1425 - 2760, n=5)
-13%
Write 4K Q32T1
357.4
437.3
22%
193.3
-46%
600.4
68%
483.3
35%
237.5
-34%
198.2
-45%
355 (238 - 503, n=5)
-1%
Read 4K Q32T1
482.3
338.8
-30%
179.7
-63%
387.7
-20%
451.8
-6%
336.1
-30%
288.8
-40%
429 (336 - 568, n=5)
-11%
Write Seq Q32T1
1558
1994
28%
396.8
-75%
1374
-12%
2066
33%
1512
-3%
2007
29%
1514 (1391 - 1581, n=5)
-3%
Read Seq Q32T1
3021
3407
13%
547.2
-82%
2585
-14%
3423
13%
3154
4%
3409
13%
2677 (1570 - 3154, n=5)
-11%
Intel SSD Pro 7600p SSDPEKKF512G8L
Sequential Read: 2819 MB/s
Sequential Write: 1437 MB/s
512K Read: 1125 MB/s
512K Write: 951.7 MB/s
4K Read: 75.14 MB/s
4K Write: 200.8 MB/s
4K QD32 Read: 626.8 MB/s
4K QD32 Write: 552 MB/s

Graphics Performance

In the past, only ThinkPad Yoga devices with 14 or 15.6-inch screens were equipped with an optional dedicated GPU - this was the case for the ThinkPad P40 Yoga, for example. The ThinkPad X390 Yoga has a 13.3-inch display and is closer to the traditional 12.5-inch models and therefore does not have a dedicated GPU. The Intel UHD Graphics 620 in our test unit has 24 execution units and, being an integrated graphics chip without its own memory, uses the main RAM. As our RAM runs in dual-channel mode, the graphics chip can reach its full potential, which, however, is not very high. The integrated GPU should suffice for simple multimedia needs, but not for more demanding applications.

GPU performance is not affected by the device running on battery.

3DMark 11 - 1280x720 Performance GPU
Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Yoga 2018-20LES01W00
Intel UHD Graphics 620, Intel Core i7-8550U
1869 Points ∼100% +3%
Lenovo ThinkPad X390-20Q1S02M00
Intel UHD Graphics 620, Intel Core i5-8265U
1841 Points ∼99% +2%
Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Yoga 2018-20LD0015US
Intel UHD Graphics 620, Intel Core i5-8250U
1814 Points ∼97% 0%
Lenovo ThinkPad X390 Yoga-20NQS05R00
Intel UHD Graphics 620, Intel Core i7-8565U
1806 Points ∼97%
HP EliteBook x360 1030 G3
Intel UHD Graphics 620, Intel Core i5-8250U
1738 Points ∼93% -4%
Average Intel UHD Graphics 620
  (1235 - 2006, n=169)
1714 Points ∼92% -5%
Lenovo ThinkPad X380 Yoga 20LJS02W00
Intel UHD Graphics 620, Intel Core i7-8550U
1614 Points ∼86% -11%
Dell Latitude 7390 2-in-1
Intel UHD Graphics 620, Intel Core i7-8650U
1600 Points ∼86% -11%
Average of class Convertible
  (173 - 7483, n=327)
1275 Points ∼68% -29%
3DMark
1920x1080 Fire Strike Graphics
Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Yoga 2018-20LES01W00
Intel UHD Graphics 620, Intel Core i7-8550U
1288 Points ∼100% +1%
Lenovo ThinkPad X390 Yoga-20NQS05R00
Intel UHD Graphics 620, Intel Core i7-8565U
1278 Points ∼99%
Lenovo ThinkPad X390-20Q1S02M00
Intel UHD Graphics 620, Intel Core i5-8265U
1266 Points ∼98% -1%
Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Yoga 2018-20LD0015US
Intel UHD Graphics 620, Intel Core i5-8250U
1208 Points ∼94% -5%
Average Intel UHD Graphics 620
  (557 - 1401, n=137)
1125 Points ∼87% -12%
Dell Latitude 7390 2-in-1
Intel UHD Graphics 620, Intel Core i7-8650U
1018 Points ∼79% -20%
Average of class Convertible
  (132 - 5965, n=238)
1016 Points ∼79% -21%
Lenovo ThinkPad X380 Yoga 20LJS02W00
Intel UHD Graphics 620, Intel Core i7-8550U
862 Points ∼67% -33%
1280x720 Cloud Gate Standard Graphics
Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Yoga 2018-20LES01W00
Intel UHD Graphics 620, Intel Core i7-8550U
10493 Points ∼100% +2%
Lenovo ThinkPad X390 Yoga-20NQS05R00
Intel UHD Graphics 620, Intel Core i7-8565U
10322 Points ∼98%
Lenovo ThinkPad X390-20Q1S02M00
Intel UHD Graphics 620, Intel Core i5-8265U
10126 Points ∼97% -2%
Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Yoga 2018-20LD0015US
Intel UHD Graphics 620, Intel Core i5-8250U
9946 Points ∼95% -4%
HP EliteBook x360 1030 G3
Intel UHD Graphics 620, Intel Core i5-8250U
9478 Points ∼90% -8%
Average Intel UHD Graphics 620
  (6910 - 11436, n=155)
9136 Points ∼87% -11%
Dell Latitude 7390 2-in-1
Intel UHD Graphics 620, Intel Core i7-8650U
8995 Points ∼86% -13%
Lenovo ThinkPad X380 Yoga 20LJS02W00
Intel UHD Graphics 620, Intel Core i7-8550U
6910 Points ∼66% -33%
Average of class Convertible
  (1023 - 37388, n=289)
6753 Points ∼64% -35%
3DMark 11 Performance
2020 points
3DMark Cloud Gate Standard Score
8504 points
3DMark Fire Strike Score
1152 points
Help

Gaming Performance

The Intel UHD Graphics 620 is not really strong enough for games. While you can play simple games from the Microsoft store and some older games smoothly, modern games will only run at extremely reduced resolution and minimum detail settings - if at all. The only option to play modern games on the Lenovo ThinkPad X390 Yoga is by connecting an external GPU, which is possible thanks to the Thunderbolt 3 port.

low med. high ultra
BioShock Infinite (2013) 73.8337.4731.2510.51fps
The Witcher 3 (2015) 17.7fps
Dota 2 Reborn (2015) 7047.920.518.7fps
Rise of the Tomb Raider (2016) 23.314.2fps
X-Plane 11.11 (2018) 26.817.415.8fps

Emissions

System Noise

The cooling fan of the ThinkPad X390 Yoga remains silent while idling. But of course, it turns up under load. However, even then the active cooling system does not become particularly loud with the noise level measured at a maximum of 35 dB(A) and sometimes as low as 32.4 dB(A) under load. The cooling fans even turn off occasionally during our stress test.  

Unfortunately, the X390 Yoga has an annoying coil whine. In silent surroundings, this is audible when sitting at a normal distance to the device.

Noise Level

Idle
29.2 / 29.2 / 29.2 dB(A)
Load
35 / 35 dB(A)
  red to green bar
 
 
30 dB
silent
40 dB(A)
audible
50 dB(A)
loud
 
min: dark, med: mid, max: light   Audix TM1, Arta (15 cm distance)   environment noise: 29.2 dB(A)
dB(A) 0102030405060708090Deep BassMiddle BassHigh BassLower RangeMidsHigher MidsLower HighsMid HighsUpper HighsSuper Highs2026.630.927.62524.726.328.53126.628.326.34026.527.1275024.429.225.4632222.2258023.221.924.71002324.923.312522.520.823.116023.121.522.120022.62222.325022.121.322.531521.920.721.840021.820.621.450022.220.321.263021.918.920.580020.818.919.7100020.717.919.7125020.917.819.6160023.616.821200024.116.12125002616.123315026.115.822.3400023.615.520.2500021.115.518.8630020.315.416.9800018.515.416.31000016.515.315.71250015.715.115.41600015.31515.2SPL3529.232.4N2.11.21.7median 21.9median 17.8median 21Delta1.62.62.129.424.830.729.423.323.526.425.725.628.527.730.324.924.925.62623.52624.124.321.822.323.923.523.82223.423.922.420.82223.322.321.321.722.321.822.522.72221.421.922.721.822.122.121.821.421.220.520.620.921.220.520.320.821.120.519.520.920.619.919.420.520.219.718.920.321.219.918.22121.519.617.421.422.219.91722.122.219.516.422.225.321.916.125.123.619.715.52424.820.715.524.523.620.215.723.324.518.215.423.62017.115.619.718.116.715.417.416.716.115.31616.616.315.115.334.831.929.234.62.11.61.22.1median 21.5median 19.9median 17.4median 21.41.20.72.51.2hearing rangehide median Fan NoiseLenovo ThinkPad X390 Yoga-20NQS05R00Lenovo ThinkPad X390-20Q1S02M00

Temperature

Stress test (Prime95 + FurMark)
Stress test (Prime95 + FurMark)

The temperatures reach a maximum of 50 °C (~122 °F) at the bottom of the base unit under load. This is quite warm, but luckily it is the only hotspot. The front area remains cool at all times.

The ThinkPad X390 Yoga momentarily consumes up to 35 watts during our stress test (Prime95 + FurMark) with a clock rate of 2.9 GHz and temperatures rising to 97 °C (~207 °F). After 30 seconds, consumption is limited to 25 watts and the clock rate drops to 2.2 GHz. Temperatures also drop to 91 °C (~196 °F). Two minutes later the ThinkPad further limits CPU consumption to 15 watts, making the clock rate fall to only 900 MHz. The core temperature of the CPU drops to 84 °C (~183 °F). The clock rate occasionally sinks to only 400 MHz and a consumption of 6 watts during the remainder of the stress test.

This thermal throttling should not have an impact on day-to-day use as a round of the 3DMark 11 after the stress test resulted in normal values.

Max. Load
 40.2 °C
104 F
41.7 °C
107 F
35.8 °C
96 F
 
 38.7 °C
102 F
40.3 °C
105 F
31.9 °C
89 F
 
 26 °C
79 F
25.1 °C
77 F
24.6 °C
76 F
 
Maximum: 41.7 °C = 107 F
Average: 33.8 °C = 93 F
31.7 °C
89 F
50.1 °C
122 F
46.4 °C
116 F
31.6 °C
89 F
39.9 °C
104 F
39.2 °C
103 F
23.9 °C
75 F
24.7 °C
76 F
25.3 °C
78 F
Maximum: 50.1 °C = 122 F
Average: 34.8 °C = 95 F
Power Supply (max.)  33.9 °C = 93 F | Room Temperature 20.3 °C = 69 F | Voltcraft IR-900
(±) The average temperature for the upper side under maximal load is 33.8 °C / 93 F, compared to the average of 30.3 °C / 87 F for the devices in the class Convertible.
(±) The maximum temperature on the upper side is 41.7 °C / 107 F, compared to the average of 35.4 °C / 96 F, ranging from 21.8 to 55.7 °C for the class Convertible.
(-) The bottom heats up to a maximum of 50.1 °C / 122 F, compared to the average of 36.5 °C / 98 F
(+) In idle usage, the average temperature for the upper side is 25.3 °C / 78 F, compared to the device average of 30.3 °C / 87 F.
(+) The palmrests and touchpad are cooler than skin temperature with a maximum of 26 °C / 78.8 F and are therefore cool to the touch.
(+) The average temperature of the palmrest area of similar devices was 28.9 °C / 84 F (+2.9 °C / 5.2 F).

Speakers

The speakers on the bottom of the base unit are typical laptop speakers. They are not particularly loud, the sound they produce is unbalanced and lacking in bass. The speakers of the HP EliteBook x360 1030 G3 are not great either, but at least they reach more volume and produce a more balanced sound. We would recommend using the fully functional audio jack.

dB(A) 0102030405060708090Deep BassMiddle BassHigh BassLower RangeMidsHigher MidsLower HighsMid HighsUpper HighsSuper Highs2030.931.32526.329.73128.333.24027.129.35029.225.26322.228.48021.92610024.927.412520.82916021.535.82002242.725021.345.931520.749.240020.654.150020.353.663018.953.580018.960.2100017.966.5125017.869160016.865.9200016.160250016.155.2315015.855.6400015.558.5500015.554.3630015.457.7800015.4611000015.352.11250015.150.5160001550.2SPL29.274.1N1.230.1median 17.8median 54.1Delta2.65.535.841.735.935.531.633.332.333.130.432.130.730.730.630.828.94228.251.127.460.426.463.825.468.425.670.824.969.324.667.623.965.123.568.923.56823.367.723.465.52361.223.167.22362.72368.722.974.82380.422.878.822.972.222.770.622.767.435.484.82.461.5median 23.4median 67.71.13.2hearing rangehide median Pink NoiseLenovo ThinkPad X390 Yoga-20NQS05R00HP EliteBook x360 1030 G3
Frequency diagram (checkboxes can be checked and unchecked to compare devices)
Lenovo ThinkPad X390 Yoga-20NQS05R00 audio analysis

(±) | speaker loudness is average but good (74.1 dB)
Bass 100 - 315 Hz
(-) | nearly no bass - on average 15.8% lower than median
(±) | linearity of bass is average (10.6% delta to prev. frequency)
Mids 400 - 2000 Hz
(±) | higher mids - on average 6.5% higher than median
(±) | linearity of mids is average (10.3% delta to prev. frequency)
Highs 2 - 16 kHz
(+) | balanced highs - only 2.8% away from median
(±) | linearity of highs is average (11% delta to prev. frequency)
Overall 100 - 16.000 Hz
(±) | linearity of overall sound is average (20.8% difference to median)
Compared to same class
» 52% of all tested devices in this class were better, 7% similar, 41% worse
» The best had a delta of 11%, average was 22%, worst was 53%
Compared to all devices tested
» 47% of all tested devices were better, 9% similar, 44% worse
» The best had a delta of 3%, average was 21%, worst was 53%

HP EliteBook x360 1030 G3 audio analysis

(±) | speaker loudness is average but good (80.43 dB)
Bass 100 - 315 Hz
(±) | reduced bass - on average 9.6% lower than median
(-) | bass is not linear (15% delta to prev. frequency)
Mids 400 - 2000 Hz
(+) | balanced mids - only 1.8% away from median
(+) | mids are linear (4.8% delta to prev. frequency)
Highs 2 - 16 kHz
(±) | higher highs - on average 6% higher than median
(±) | linearity of highs is average (11.7% delta to prev. frequency)
Overall 100 - 16.000 Hz
(+) | overall sound is linear (11.4% difference to median)
Compared to same class
» 2% of all tested devices in this class were better, 3% similar, 95% worse
» The best had a delta of 11%, average was 22%, worst was 53%
Compared to all devices tested
» 4% of all tested devices were better, 2% similar, 94% worse
» The best had a delta of 3%, average was 21%, worst was 53%

Energy Management

Power Consumption

If the ThinkPad X390 can be considered energy efficient while idling. Although a lot of comparable convertibles are a little more frugal even here, the ThinkPad X390 Yoga has significantly better consumption rates than the HP EliteBook x360 1030 G3. Most competitors are more efficient when it comes to load consumption, which is in part connected to the slightly increased TDP limit of the Lenovo X390 Yoga. 

The maximum consumption we measured was 65.9 watts, which is above the rated output of the 65-watt AC adapter. However, this is just a spike under load and consumption soon dropped to 45.6 watts. Therefore, users need not worry about the device discharging under load even when connected to the grid.

Power Consumption
Off / Standbydarklight 0.43 / 0.74 Watt
Idledarkmidlight 3.46 / 5.88 / 9.12 Watt
Load midlight 45.6 / 65.9 Watt
 color bar
Key: min: dark, med: mid, max: light        Metrahit Energy
Lenovo ThinkPad X390 Yoga-20NQS05R00
8565U, UHD Graphics 620, Intel SSD Pro 7600p SSDPEKKF512G8L, IPS LED, 1920x1080, 13.3
Lenovo ThinkPad X380 Yoga 20LJS02W00
8550U, UHD Graphics 620, Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB512HAJQ, IPS, 1920x1080, 13.3
HP EliteBook x360 1030 G3
8250U, UHD Graphics 620, Samsung PM871b MZNLN128HAHQ, IPS, 1920x1080, 13.3
Dell Latitude 7390 2-in-1
8650U, UHD Graphics 620, SK hynix PC401 NVMe 500 GB, IPS, 1920x1080, 13.3
Lenovo ThinkPad X390-20Q1S02M00
8265U, UHD Graphics 620, Intel SSD Pro 7600p SSDPEKKF512G8L, IPS LED, 1920x1080, 13.3
Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Yoga 2018-20LD0015US
8250U, UHD Graphics 620, Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB512HAJQ, IPS, 1920x1080, 14
Average Intel UHD Graphics 620
 
Average of class Convertible
 
Power Consumption
19%
9%
28%
3%
13%
5%
5%
Idle Minimum *
3.46
4
-16%
3.8
-10%
2.6
25%
3.4
2%
3
13%
3.86 (1 - 12.4, n=176)
-12%
4.66 (1 - 23, n=378)
-35%
Idle Average *
5.88
4.9
17%
7.5
-28%
5.7
3%
5.6
5%
5.4
8%
7.1 (4.3 - 15.5, n=176)
-21%
7.8 (1.3 - 32.3, n=378)
-33%
Idle Maximum *
9.12
6.9
24%
8.6
6%
6
34%
8.7
5%
7.5
18%
8.93 (5.2 - 16.6, n=176)
2%
9.33 (1.8 - 61, n=378)
-2%
Load Average *
45.6
36
21%
33.1
27%
29.2
36%
43.6
4%
40.1
12%
35.3 (8.1 - 51.6, n=176)
23%
26.6 (1.4 - 94, n=376)
42%
Load Maximum *
65.9
34.4
48%
31.8
52%
38.8
41%
65
1%
57.1
13%
44.8 (22 - 79, n=176)
32%
31.8 (6.8 - 117, n=377)
52%

* ... smaller is better

Battery Life

Time to recharge: 107 minutes
Time to recharge: 107 minutes
Wi-F test at maximum brightness: 406 minutes
Wi-F test at maximum brightness: 406 minutes

Lenovo has slightly decreased the size of our test unit's battery compared to the X380 Yoga. Instead of an integrated 51-Wh battery, the X390 Yoga is now equipped with an integrated Lithium-Ion battery with a capacity of 50 Wh. This slight difference is actually noticeable in our realistic Wi-Fi battery test, where various websites are accessed following a script while the display is set to 150 cd/m² brightness. The runtime of over 8 hours is still acceptable, even if the competition lasts longer. The Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Yoga 2018 is the winner of this comparison: It lasted almost 11 hours in our Wi-Fi battery test.    

In addition to our normal test we ran the Wi-Fi test again at maximum brightness. This reduced battery life to 6.5 hours.

Battery Runtime
NBC WiFi Websurfing Battery Test 1.3 (Edge)
8h 12min
Big Buck Bunny H.264 1080p
10h 00min
Load (maximum brightness)
1h 31min
Lenovo ThinkPad X390 Yoga-20NQS05R00
8565U, UHD Graphics 620, 50 Wh
Lenovo ThinkPad X380 Yoga 20LJS02W00
8550U, UHD Graphics 620, 51 Wh
HP EliteBook x360 1030 G3
8250U, UHD Graphics 620, 56.2 Wh
Dell Latitude 7390 2-in-1
8650U, UHD Graphics 620, 60 Wh
Lenovo ThinkPad X390-20Q1S02M00
8265U, UHD Graphics 620, 48 Wh
Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Yoga 2018-20LD0015US
8250U, UHD Graphics 620, 54 Wh
Average of class Convertible
 
Battery Runtime
16%
65%
30%
10%
40%
9%
Reader / Idle
1250
1381
1218
769 (117 - 2139, n=289)
H.264
600
550
-8%
764
27%
452 (206 - 1070, n=114)
-25%
WiFi v1.3
492
511
4%
602
22%
553
12%
499
1%
651
32%
455 (153 - 1010, n=253)
-8%
Load
91
138
52%
189
108%
135
48%
94
3%
135
48%
145 (49 - 677, n=284)
59%

Pros

+ light and stable case
+ very comfortable keyboard
+ input devices: wide range and high quality
+ improved port selection compared to predecessor
+ a lot of enterprise functions
+ display with high contrast and good color space coverage
+ better CPU performance under continuous load than the X380 Yoga
+ hesitant fans
+ generous warranty

Cons

- "Lift&Lock" keyboard has gone
- smaller keyboard layout compared to larger ThinkPads
- WWAN cannot be retrofitted
- audible coil whine
- shiny display
- missing hardware options (brighter LCD, 32 GB of RAM)
- display: slow response times

Verdict

Review: Lenovo ThinkPad X390 Yoga, test unit provided by campuspoint
Review: Lenovo ThinkPad X390 Yoga, test unit provided by campuspoint

The ThinkPad X390 Yoga continues the worthy tradition of ThinkPad convertible laptops. The 13.3-inch ultrabook has a lot to offer. However, we must also mention some weaknesses.

For instance, the missing "Lift&Lock" keyboard, which used to protect the keys in tablet mode. This is a shame, as it was unique among convertibles. It is no longer possible to retrofit WWAN, either. We also noticed an annoying coil whine and wish Lenovo had included a brighter screen - particularly considering its reflective surface. Apparently, there will not be an option with 32 GB of RAM, unlike for the normal ThinkPad X390. This is particularly bothersome as the RAM is firmly soldered on and cannot be expanded or replaced. The response time of the LCD panel is disappointing as well.

On a more positive note, we have the newly updated case, which continues to be stable and robust while being slimmer and lighter than its predecessor. While the keyboard is missing its "Lift&Lock" mechanism, it is no doubt of great quality - at least if you ignore the fact that it is slightly smaller than usual. The various mouse replacement options (touchpad, TrackPoint, touchscreen and Digitizer pen) are all very easy to use. Another flexible aspect of the ThinkPad convertible is its port selection. It now features an additional USB C port compared to its predecessor. This enables users to connect mechanical docking stations that are also compatible with the other ThinkPads - an important factor for large businesses. Apart from the shiny surface, the display of the X390 Yoga can offer a high contrast ratio and good color space coverage. The CPU performance has also been improved. It still is not particularly impressive and cannot keep up with other ThinkPads, but it can now keep going for longer under load than its predecessor, the X380 Yoga. Other advantages of the X390 Yoga are the calm cooling fans and the generous warranty.

The ThinkPad X390 Yoga is a high-quality convertible made for the business environment. Its good input devices in particular are very attractive.

Overall, the positive aspects of the Lenovo ThinkPad X390 Yoga clearly outweigh its shortcomings and we can recommend it. Its competitors Dell Latitude 7390 2-in-1 and HP EliteBook x360 1030 G3 also have quite a lot to offer, however, and can even top the ThinkPad in certain areas. The HP EliteBook, for example, has a brighter display and a better battery runtime. The ThinkPad Yoga prevails when it comes to input devices and also offers business features such as a smart card slot or the mechanical docking port, which should make it particularly interesting for businesses.

Lenovo ThinkPad X390 Yoga-20NQS05R00 - 06/11/2019 v6(old)
Benjamin Herzig

Chassis
90 / 98 → 92%
Keyboard
91%
Pointing Device
91%
Connectivity
74 / 80 → 92%
Weight
72 / 35-78 → 86%
Battery
91%
Display
85%
Games Performance
59 / 68 → 87%
Application Performance
89 / 87 → 100%
Temperature
90%
Noise
87%
Audio
44 / 91 → 48%
Camera
42 / 85 → 50%
Average
77%
87%
Convertible - Weighted Average

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> Notebook / Laptop Reviews and News > Reviews > Lenovo ThinkPad X390 Yoga (i7, FHD) Convertible Review
Benjamin Herzig, 2019-06-12 (Update: 2019-06-12)