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Lenovo Yoga 3 11 Convertible Review

Sebastian Jentsch, Stefanie Voigt (translated by Andreas Osthoff), 06/04/2015

Multi-mode. Handy as a subnotebook, thin and light as a tablet. The compact form factor could currently represent the optimum between mobility and productivity. The Core M ensures long battery runtimes and the IPS panel a good picture impression. Read our review to find out why the package still cannot really convince us.

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German-English-Translator - Details here

Lenovo Yoga 3 11 with Core M-5Y10c: A flexible and mobile device?
Lenovo Yoga 3 11 with Core M-5Y10c: A flexible and mobile device?

For the original German review, see here.

Intel’s Core M started a new trend at the beginning of 2015: The most mobile convertibles and tablets can now completely waive an active fan, but still offer a reasonable amount of performance for Windows applications. The low TDP of 4.5 W as well as the wide clock range (500 MHz up to 2 GHz Boost) allows a high performance to compensate peak load, but save a lot of energy and heat because of the very low nominal clock.

This means the compact Yoga 3 11 is not designed for serious video editing, but for everybody that is looking for a small subnotebook that can be handed around as a tablet or used as a movie display (Tent mode).

A Lenovo Yoga 3 11 costs from 700 up to 800 Euros (~$778 to $889) and the Core M-5Y10c is standard. Rivals in this price range are the Acer Aspire Switch 12 SW5 as well as the Asus Transformer Book T300 Chi. Acer and Asus use a keyboard dock with an attachable tablet, and the same applies for Dell. The Dell Venue 11 Pro 7140 Convertible tablet is a bit more expensive. Lenovo’s own ThinkPad Yoga 11e is the lower-priced sibling with a weaker Celeron N2930. Those alternatives have form factors between 10.8 (Venue 11 Pro) up to 12.5 inches (Transformer Book).

Lenovo Yoga 3 11 80J8001WGE
Graphics adapter
Memory
8192 MB 
, Dual-Channel
Display
11.6 inch 16:9, 1920 x 1080 pixel, 10-finger multitouch, CMN1137 N116HSE-EBC, IPS, glossy: yes
Mainboard
Intel Broadwell-Y PCH-LP (Premium)
Storage
Lite-On IT L8T-128L9G, 128 GB 
, Lite-On IT L8T-128L9G
Soundcard
Intel Broadwell PCH-LP - High Definition Audio Controller
Connections
2 USB 2.0, 1 USB 3.0 / 3.1 Gen1, 1 HDMI, Audio Connections: Mic+Line, Card Reader: SD, MMC, Sensors: Ambient Light, Position
Networking
Intel Dual Band Wireless-AC 3160 (a/b/g/n/ac), Bluetooth 4.0
Size
height x width x depth (in mm): 15.6 x 298 x 204 ( = 0.61 x 11.73 x 8.03 in)
Battery
34 Wh Lithium-Ion, 4650 mAh, model L14M4P71
Operating System
Microsoft Windows 8.1 64 Bit
Camera
Webcam: HD 1280x720
Additional features
Speakers: Stereo, Keyboard Light: no, PhotoMaster, VeriFace Pro, Messenger, Motion Control, Harmony, Energy Manager, 24 Months Warranty
Weight
1.101 kg ( = 38.84 oz / 2.43 pounds), Power Supply: 201 g ( = 7.09 oz / 0.44 pounds)
Note: The manufacturer may use components from different suppliers including display panels, drives or memory sticks with similar specifications.

 

Case

Not convenient during tablet operation: ...
Not convenient during tablet operation: ...
... the gap of the clamshell chassis
... the gap of the clamshell chassis

The thin and fanless chassis is a successful eye-catcher with a design combination of black frames and white areas. The display is surrounded by a thick rubber lip, which has a counterpart on the base unit. This creates an impression of a closed book. The top of the base unit, more precisely the work environment, is made of a brushed and painted aluminum, while the bottom and the lid are made of plastic.

The base unit is very sturdy and we can hardly twist it. The hinges are firm and keep the lid in position well. There is no bouncing during light vibrations, but the display will still tilt when you shake the Yoga 3 in the Laptop mode. While handy, the Tablet mode is not very comfortable because the two back covers are not sitting flush. There is a gap between the outer curves of the base unit and the lid, and the hand cannot find good grip. Magnets do at least ensure a constant connection of the base unit and the lid.

Unlike the business Yogas, the keyboard will not lock, and the keys can still be moved, but they are not active when you use the device as a tablet. The small Yoga 3 actually suffers from this inhomogeneous impression. The rubber frame of the base unit is not just a visual and haptic gimmick. It is a bit higher compared to the working environment and is used as a support foot on the table if you put the tablet down, so you do not need additional support feet on top of the base unit.

Because of the slim construction, Lenovo waives a full-sized VGA and HDMI port and integrates a Micro-HDMI port instead.

Power On, Recovery button, volume, combined mic+line, USB 2.0
Power On, Recovery button, volume, combined mic+line, USB 2.0
Combined AC USB 2.0, USB 3.0, Micro-HDMI, card reader SD, MMC
Combined AC USB 2.0, USB 3.0, Micro-HDMI, card reader SD, MMC
40-Watt socket power adaptor for the combined USB port
40-watt socket power adaptor for the combined USB port
The bottom is only secured by Torx screws
The bottom is only secured by Torx screws
Reference EOS 1100D
Reference EOS 1100D
Reference EOS 1100D
Reference EOS 1100D
Webcam 1280 x 720
Webcam 1280 x 720
high contrast, some picture noise
high contrast, some picture noise

Communication

Intel's Dual-Band Wireless-AC 3160 constantly showed 3 out of 5 bars (Windows icon) at the 15 meters (~49 feet) measuring point outside the house in the individual setup of the author. The Yoga 3 11 did, however, not get a signal 40 meters (~131 feet) away. The majority of review devices only manage a very weak signal with a reduced browsing speed (slower opening of websites) at this point. 

Webcam

The Yoga 3 11 only has a low-resolution HD camera at the front, so you cannot take pictures in the tablet mode. The quality of the pictures is pretty bad under daylight, but the camera is usable for Skype thanks to the good focusing and the slightly exaggerated contrast.

Maintenance

You can easily remove the bottom cover when you have a small Torx screwdriver. The memory is soldered, but the M.2 SSD, the WLAN module as well as the battery can be replaced.

Accessories

Except for the power adaptor and the warranty card, there are no accessories in the box. The power adapter doubles as a USB charger. The manufacturer offers special accessories like the Yoga Protective Display Cover or the Yoga Slot-In Case (888016295). The protective cover avoids scratches and damage from water, dust and dirt, but it does not have an anti-reflective coating.

Warranty

The warranty period is two years and can be extended by one year with optional Care Packs from Lenovo, which are available for around 70 Euros (~$78). The manufacturer also offers damage protection (35, 95, 158 Euros/~$39, $106, $176 for 1, 2, 3 years).

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Input Devices

Keyboard

The keyboard of the Yoga 11 suffers from a soft stroke, and the keyboard surface can be warped easily with applied pressure. The stroke is therefore very quiet, but leaves a clattery impression. The haptic feedback is also affected by the limited travel even though this is typical for thin devices. The pressure point is precise, but cannot create good feedback in combination with the limited travel. The overall typing experience is unsatisfactory but possible. The latter benefits from the generous layout; the manufacturer separates the arrow keys and the most important keys like Del, Ctrl, Enter, Shift and Backspace are sufficiently sized and are at the usual spots.

Touchpad

The ClickPad from Synaptics offers numerous options to adjust gestures with multiple fingers to your personal needs. This includes scrolling, zooming and rotating with two fingers. The Windows 8 Edge-Swipes from the sides can be activated/deactivated as well. Similar to the touchscreen, you can open the charms bar or switch to the last application.

The touchpad has a long-lasting smooth surface. The travel of the rocker is unfortunately very limited and basically not available in the upper third. The pressure point is firm, but the feedback is not very satisfying when you click. 

Touchscreen 

The touch panel executes inputs quickly. It is sensitive up into the peripheral areas, and the fingers glide easily across the surface. The hinges unfortunately quickly result in a bouncing display, which also affects the touch inputs in the Laptop mode.

deactivated in tablet mode, but not very comfortable to touch
deactivated in tablet mode, but not very comfortable to touch
limited travel, shallow pressure point
limited travel, shallow pressure point
hardly any travel, soft pressure point & bouncing stroke
hardly any travel, soft pressure point & bouncing stroke

Display

The 11.6-inch touch panel (model CMN1137 N116HSE-EBC) uses the IPS technology and has a native resolution of 1920x1080 pixels. This results in a pixel density of 190 PPI, a rather fine resolution for an 11.6-inch device. The contrast is 690:1, not an overwhelming, but a good result.

The brightness is not reduced on battery power and we can measure an average value of 286 cd/m². The brightness distribution of 86% across the nine measuring spots appears normal and typical for tablets and notebooks. You can, however, see screen bleeding right at the edge with a black picture, but it is not annoying in practice. 

There is, unfortunately, a real drawback: The panel seems to be very firmly fixed in the cover, so contacts at the edges immediately result in pressure points. This is not the case when you apply pressure from behind, but in the Tablet mode, where you touch the device at the edges. This affects the otherwise good impression of the build quality.

Screen bleeding even with gentle contacts of the panel frame
Screen bleeding even with gentle contacts of the panel frame
uneven brightness distribution
uneven brightness distribution
screen bleeding with contact is a problem at every side
screen bleeding with contact is a problem at every side
289
cd/m²
273
cd/m²
281
cd/m²
273
cd/m²
290
cd/m²
266
cd/m²
308
cd/m²
292
cd/m²
299
cd/m²
Distribution of brightness
X-Rite i1Pro 2
Maximum: 308 cd/m² Average: 285.7 cd/m²
Brightness Distribution: 86 %
Center on Battery: 290 cd/m²
Contrast: 690:1 (Black: 0.42 cd/m²)
ΔE Color 6.5 | 0.4-29.43 Ø6.2
ΔE Greyscale 6.35 | 0.64-98 Ø6.4
65% sRGB (Argyll 3D) 42% AdobeRGB 1998 (Argyll 3D)
Gamma: 2.44
Lenovo Yoga 3 11 80J8001WGE
1920x1080 IPS
Acer Aspire Switch 12 SW5-271-61X7
1920x1080 IPS
Asus Transformer Book T300 Chi
2560x1440 IPS
Lenovo ThinkPad Yoga 11e 20D9000QGE
1366x768 IPS
Dell Venue 11 Pro 7140
1920x1080 IPS
Screen
19%
28%
4%
23%
Brightness middle
290
385
33%
368.1
27%
285
-2%
386
33%
Brightness
286
352
23%
375
31%
285
0%
357
25%
Brightness Distribution
86
85
-1%
92
7%
88
2%
84
-2%
Black Level *
0.42
0.48
-14%
0.458
-9%
0.4
5%
0.4
5%
Contrast
690
802
16%
804
17%
713
3%
965
40%
Colorchecker DeltaE2000 *
6.5
4.3
34%
4.36
33%
6.39
2%
3.71
43%
Greyscale DeltaE2000 *
6.35
3.73
41%
2.63
59%
5.41
15%
5.4
15%
Gamma
2.44 90%
2.66 83%
2.08 106%
2.76 80%
2.33 94%
CCT
7156 91%
6785 96%
6743 96%
6082 107%
6666 98%
Color Space (Percent of AdobeRGB 1998)
42
66.94
59%
Color Space (Percent of sRGB)
65

* ... smaller is better

The display subjectively convinces with rich blacks and vivid colors. The black value at the maximum brightness level on mains power is not the best at 0.42 cd/m², but it is still good. The competition is similar, which is why there is basically no contrast difference between the panels. The rivals in the table are still slightly better since they have a higher luminance (except for the Yoga 11e) as well as a lower DeltaE.

The review unit covers 65% of the sRGB color space, but only 42% AdobeRGB. It is therefore not suited for professional picture editors.

We measured the display with a spectrophotometer. The color presentation is reasonable, but not very good with a high average DeltaE of six. We cannot determine a blue cast, but blue and magenta show the highest deviations from the ideal value.

This describes the factory settings, a calibration improved the colors a bit. We linked the profile in the display box above.

AdobeRGB1998 42 %
AdobeRGB1998 42%
sRGB 65 %
sRGB 65%
Grayscale
Grayscale
Saturation Sweeps
Saturation Sweeps
ColorChecker
ColorChecker

You cannot use the Yoga outdoors. The luminance can still reach the highest setting on battery power when you deactivate the sensor, but 285 cd/m² are not sufficient in combination with a glossy display. Bright daylight and sunlight prevent a decent readability of the content. Matte displays, however, are only available in a few and expensive business convertibles.

Take it outside?
Take it outside?
This should be possible ...
This should be possible ...
... with a versatile Yoga.
... with a versatile Yoga.
The reflections are unfortunately very annoying.
The reflections are unfortunately very annoying.

The viewing angles are on a good IPS level, and we can easily see edges and colors from any position. Colors may appear brighter from extreme angles, but contrast remains unchanged.

Viewing angles Lenovo Yoga 3 11 (80J8001WGE) CMN1137 N116HSE-EBC, IPS
Viewing angles Lenovo Yoga 3 11 (80J8001WGE) CMN1137 N116HSE-EBC, IPS

Performance

Intel Core M-5Y10c
Intel Core M-5Y10c
128 GB SSD Lite-On IT L8T-128L9G
128 GB SSD Lite-On IT L8T-128L9G

Lenovo uses the standard model from the Core M lineup, the Core M 5Y10c (0.8 GHz) processor. This SoC is used for many fanless tablets, convertibles, and very thin subnotebooks. One notebook example would be the Asus UX305FA; a convertible would be the rival Transformer Book T300FA. The performance of these systems is limited compared to standard ULV processors (Broadwell 15 W), but the system performance is usually reasonable, up to very good, thanks to fast SSDs (no eMMC modules).

Lenovo uses a Lite-On SSD (L8T-128L9G, 128 GB) and 8 GB RAM in a dual-channel configuration. The Intel HD Graphics 5300 integrated graphics card handles the graphics output and supports decoding tasks.

System info: CPU-Z CPU
System info: CPU-Z Mainboard
System info: CPU-Z Memory
System info: CPU-Z Cache
System info: GPU-Z HD 5300
Latency Monitor
System information Lenovo Yoga 3 11 80J8001WGE

Processor

The processor benchmarks from Cinebench are an indicator for the performance of the SoC compared to similar or other chips in the rivals. The comparison with other Core M SoCs makes sense since thermal circumstances can result in different utilizations of the Turbo Boost for the CPU and GPU. Different results for identical SoCs are therefore pretty common and no exception.

Our Yoga 3 11 with its Core M 5Y10c looks pretty bad compared to the Dell Venue 11 Pro 7140 (5Y10a). The tablet from Dell gets 42 up to 63% more points in the two Multi- and Single-CPU tests, respectively. The 5Y10a also has a TDP of 4.5 W, but the TDP can be configured by the manufacturer. It seems that Lenovo optimized the chip towards a TDP of 3 W. This is supported by the power consumption, which is always lower than the Venue 11 Pro 7140.

The review unit can beat the inexpensive entry-level device Yoga 11e (-38/-42%) in the Single-Test, but they are on par in the Multi-Test. The Yoga 3 11 is worse than the quad-core Celeron in CineBench R15.

On battery: Cinebench R11.5 Multi @1.4 GHz, 64°C
On battery: Cinebench R11.5 Multi @1.4 GHz, 64°C
On mains: Cinebench R15 Multi @800 MHz, 53°C
On mains: Cinebench R15 Multi @800 MHz, 53°C
Cinebench R15 Multi @800 MHz, 8 Watts
Cinebench R15 Multi @800 MHz, 8 W
Cinebench R15
CPU Single 64Bit (sort by value)
Lenovo Yoga 3 11 80J8001WGE
HD Graphics 5300, 5Y10c, Lite-On IT L8T-128L9G
57 Points ∼26%
Asus Transformer Book T300 Chi
HD Graphics 5300, 5Y71, SanDisk SSD i110 128GB
108 Points ∼50% +89%
Dell Venue 11 Pro 7140
HD Graphics 5300, 5Y10a, Sandisk X110 M.2 SD6SP1M-128G
83 Points ∼38% +46%
Lenovo ThinkPad Yoga 11e 20D9000QGE
HD Graphics (Bay Trail), N2930, Toshiba MQ01ACF050
33 Points ∼15% -42%
CPU Multi 64Bit (sort by value)
Lenovo Yoga 3 11 80J8001WGE
HD Graphics 5300, 5Y10c, Lite-On IT L8T-128L9G
131 Points ∼3%
Asus Transformer Book T300 Chi
HD Graphics 5300, 5Y71, SanDisk SSD i110 128GB
209 Points ∼5% +60%
Dell Venue 11 Pro 7140
HD Graphics 5300, 5Y10a, Sandisk X110 M.2 SD6SP1M-128G
190 Points ∼4% +45%
Acer Aspire Switch 12 SW5-271-61X7
HD Graphics 5300, 5Y10c, 128 GB SATA SSD
180 Points ∼4% +37%
Lenovo ThinkPad Yoga 11e 20D9000QGE
HD Graphics (Bay Trail), N2930, Toshiba MQ01ACF050
133 Points ∼3% +2%
Cinebench R11.5
CPU Single 64Bit (sort by value)
Lenovo Yoga 3 11 80J8001WGE
HD Graphics 5300, 5Y10c, Lite-On IT L8T-128L9G
0.66 Points ∼27%
Asus Transformer Book T300 Chi
HD Graphics 5300, 5Y71, SanDisk SSD i110 128GB
1.35 Points ∼55% +105%
Dell Venue 11 Pro 7140
HD Graphics 5300, 5Y10a, Sandisk X110 M.2 SD6SP1M-128G
0.94 Points ∼39% +42%
Acer Aspire Switch 12 SW5-271-61X7
HD Graphics 5300, 5Y10c, 128 GB SATA SSD
0.96 Points ∼39% +45%
Lenovo ThinkPad Yoga 11e 20D9000QGE
HD Graphics (Bay Trail), N2930, Toshiba MQ01ACF050
0.41 Points ∼17% -38%
CPU Multi 64Bit (sort by value)
Lenovo Yoga 3 11 80J8001WGE
HD Graphics 5300, 5Y10c, Lite-On IT L8T-128L9G
1.23 Points ∼5%
Asus Transformer Book T300 Chi
HD Graphics 5300, 5Y71, SanDisk SSD i110 128GB
2.64 Points ∼10% +115%
Dell Venue 11 Pro 7140
HD Graphics 5300, 5Y10a, Sandisk X110 M.2 SD6SP1M-128G
2.01 Points ∼7% +63%
Acer Aspire Switch 12 SW5-271-61X7
HD Graphics 5300, 5Y10c, 128 GB SATA SSD
1.98 Points ∼7% +61%
Lenovo ThinkPad Yoga 11e 20D9000QGE
HD Graphics (Bay Trail), N2930, Toshiba MQ01ACF050
1.57 Points ∼6% +28%
Cinebench R10 Shading 32Bit
2978
Cinebench R10 Rendering Multiple CPUs 32Bit
3804
Cinebench R10 Rendering Single 32Bit
2417
Cinebench R11.5 OpenGL 64Bit
11.63 fps
Cinebench R11.5 CPU Multi 64Bit
1.23 Points
Cinebench R11.5 CPU Single 64Bit
0.66 Points
Cinebench R15 Ref. Match 64Bit
98 %
Cinebench R15 OpenGL 64Bit
16.78 fps
Cinebench R15 CPU Multi 64Bit
131 Points
Cinebench R15 CPU Single 64Bit
57 Points
Help

System Performance

We determine the application performance with the PCMark benchmarks. The SSD is an important factor – PCMark 7 in particular benefits from the fast flash storage and the Yoga 11 is just 21% behind the Dell Venue. The PCMark result of our review unit is easily superior to the entry-level Yoga 11e (Bay Trail) and just behind the Venue 11 and Transformer Book. The differences are almost completely gone in the Work score.

This means potential buyers do not have to worry about a slow Windows convertible, the Yoga 11 is always responsive, applications are launched immediately and copy transfers are quick. You can expect loading times with complex applications. The performance of the Yoga 11 cannot keep up with a mainstream notebook, but you get a higher mobility in return.

PCMark 7
Computation (sort by value)
Lenovo Yoga 3 11 80J8001WGE
HD Graphics 5300, 5Y10c, Lite-On IT L8T-128L9G
7712 Points ∼27%
Asus Transformer Book T300 Chi
HD Graphics 5300, 5Y71, SanDisk SSD i110 128GB
15083 Points ∼53% +96%
Dell Venue 11 Pro 7140
HD Graphics 5300, 5Y10a, Sandisk X110 M.2 SD6SP1M-128G
11986 Points ∼42% +55%
Acer Aspire Switch 12 SW5-271-61X7
HD Graphics 5300, 5Y10c, 128 GB SATA SSD
13213 Points ∼47% +71%
Productivity (sort by value)
Lenovo Yoga 3 11 80J8001WGE
HD Graphics 5300, 5Y10c, Lite-On IT L8T-128L9G
1591 Points ∼15%
Asus Transformer Book T300 Chi
HD Graphics 5300, 5Y71, SanDisk SSD i110 128GB
2267 Points ∼21% +42%
Dell Venue 11 Pro 7140
HD Graphics 5300, 5Y10a, Sandisk X110 M.2 SD6SP1M-128G
1913 Points ∼18% +20%
Acer Aspire Switch 12 SW5-271-61X7
HD Graphics 5300, 5Y10c, 128 GB SATA SSD
2054 Points ∼19% +29%
Score (sort by value)
Lenovo Yoga 3 11 80J8001WGE
HD Graphics 5300, 5Y10c, Lite-On IT L8T-128L9G
3414 Points ∼40%
Asus Transformer Book T300 Chi
HD Graphics 5300, 5Y71, SanDisk SSD i110 128GB
4386 Points ∼51% +28%
Dell Venue 11 Pro 7140
HD Graphics 5300, 5Y10a, Sandisk X110 M.2 SD6SP1M-128G
4135 Points ∼48% +21%
Acer Aspire Switch 12 SW5-271-61X7
HD Graphics 5300, 5Y10c, 128 GB SATA SSD
4112 Points ∼48% +20%
PCMark 8
Work Score Accelerated v2 (sort by value)
Lenovo Yoga 3 11 80J8001WGE
HD Graphics 5300, 5Y10c, Lite-On IT L8T-128L9G
3253 Points ∼50%
Asus Transformer Book T300 Chi
HD Graphics 5300, 5Y71, SanDisk SSD i110 128GB
3629 Points ∼56% +12%
Dell Venue 11 Pro 7140
HD Graphics 5300, 5Y10a, Sandisk X110 M.2 SD6SP1M-128G
3291 Points ∼51% +1%
Lenovo ThinkPad Yoga 11e 20D9000QGE
HD Graphics (Bay Trail), N2930, Toshiba MQ01ACF050
1355 Points ∼21% -58%
Home Score Accelerated v2 (sort by value)
Lenovo Yoga 3 11 80J8001WGE
HD Graphics 5300, 5Y10c, Lite-On IT L8T-128L9G
2114 Points ∼35%
Asus Transformer Book T300 Chi
HD Graphics 5300, 5Y71, SanDisk SSD i110 128GB
2717 Points ∼45% +29%
Dell Venue 11 Pro 7140
HD Graphics 5300, 5Y10a, Sandisk X110 M.2 SD6SP1M-128G
2480 Points ∼41% +17%
Lenovo ThinkPad Yoga 11e 20D9000QGE
HD Graphics (Bay Trail), N2930, Toshiba MQ01ACF050
1360 Points ∼22% -36%
PCMark 7 Score
3414 points
PCMark 8 Home Score Accelerated v2
2114 points
PCMark 8 Work Score Accelerated v2
3253 points
Help

Storage Solution

The Lite-On L8T-128L9G has a gross capacity of 128 GB and the writing performance of sequential files is very good, and the 4K Write results are excellent as well. This means the review unit manages a very good Write score in AS SSD, the Read score, on the other hand, is average. All in all, the results are decent for a current SSD and are at least on par with the rivals. Particularly bad is the Transformer Book with the SanDisk SSD, which suffers from bad access times.

Lenovo Yoga 3 11 80J8001WGE
HD Graphics 5300, 5Y10c, Lite-On IT L8T-128L9G
Asus Transformer Book T300 Chi
HD Graphics 5300, 5Y71, SanDisk SSD i110 128GB
Dell Venue 11 Pro 7140
HD Graphics 5300, 5Y10a, Sandisk X110 M.2 SD6SP1M-128G
Acer Aspire Switch 12 SW5-271-61X7
HD Graphics 5300, 5Y10c, 128 GB SATA SSD
AS SSD
-77%
-5%
5%
Score Total
710
173
-76%
648
-9%
622
-12%
Score Write
272
49
-82%
199
-27%
169
-38%
Score Read
290
85
-71%
302
4%
307
6%
Access Time Write *
0.131
0.402
-207%
0.104
21%
0.079
40%
Access Time Read *
0.173
0.398
-130%
0.16
8%
0.095
45%
4K-64 Write
215.51
9.83
-95%
152.48
-29%
109.38
-49%
4K-64 Read
228.71
29.32
-87%
241.96
6%
234.75
3%
4K Write
25.85
11.61
-55%
33.22
29%
45.2
75%
4K Read
18.28
10.75
-41%
19.3
6%
21.68
19%
Seq Write
307.1
277.24
-10%
134.69
-56%
144.48
-53%
Seq Read
432.54
446.42
3%
405.38
-6%
505.8
17%

* ... smaller is better

Lite-On IT L8T-128L9G
Sequential Read: 468.7 MB/s
Sequential Write: 322 MB/s
512K Read: 352.4 MB/s
512K Write: 318.9 MB/s
4K Read: 23 MB/s
4K Write: 34.96 MB/s
4K QD32 Read: 222.3 MB/s
4K QD32 Write: 216.7 MB/s

GPU Performance

The HD 5300 with 25 EUs supports up to 3840x2160 pixels via Micro-HDMI according to the specs. The clock is between 800 and 900 MHz at best, but the low TDP quickly results in a throttled Boost. The FurMark GPU stress test is only executed with 300 MHz after a few seconds. This is also the explanation for the low and below-average scores in the 3D benchmarks. The Venue 11 Pro 7140, which is equipped with the HD 5300 as well, manages 59% more points in Ice Storm.

3DMark - 1280x720 Ice Storm Standard Graphics (sort by value)
Lenovo Yoga 3 11 80J8001WGE
HD Graphics 5300, 5Y10c, Lite-On IT L8T-128L9G
28881 Points ∼4%
Asus Transformer Book T300 Chi
HD Graphics 5300, 5Y71, SanDisk SSD i110 128GB
48901 Points ∼7% +69%
Dell Venue 11 Pro 7140
HD Graphics 5300, 5Y10a, Sandisk X110 M.2 SD6SP1M-128G
45841 Points ∼6% +59%
Lenovo ThinkPad Yoga 11e 20D9000QGE
HD Graphics (Bay Trail), N2930, Toshiba MQ01ACF050
19692 Points ∼3% -32%
3DMark 11 Performance
498 points
3DMark Ice Storm Standard Score
15348 points
3DMark Cloud Gate Standard Score
1361 points
3DMark Fire Strike Score
331 points
Help

Gaming Performance

Games are therefore not playable, and the dual-channel memory configuration does not change that. Even titles with low requirements like Diablo 3 from 2012 are not playable with any settings.

Diablo III - 1024x768 Low / off (sort by value)
Lenovo Yoga 3 11 80J8001WGE
HD Graphics 5300, 5Y10c, Lite-On IT L8T-128L9G
21 fps ∼6%
Tomb Raider - 1024x768 Low Preset (sort by value)
Lenovo Yoga 3 11 80J8001WGE
HD Graphics 5300, 5Y10c, Lite-On IT L8T-128L9G
23 fps ∼4%
Lenovo ThinkPad Yoga 11e 20D9000QGE
HD Graphics (Bay Trail), N2930, Toshiba MQ01ACF050
15.5 fps ∼2% -33%
Dragon Age: Inquisition - 1024x768 Low Graphics Quality (sort by value)
Lenovo Yoga 3 11 80J8001WGE
HD Graphics 5300, 5Y10c, Lite-On IT L8T-128L9G
11 fps ∼4%
low med. high ultra
Diablo III (2012) 211712fps
Tomb Raider (2013) 23148.6fps
Dragon Age: Inquisition (2014) 117.63.1fps

Emissions

System Noise

The Core M SoC was designed by Intel for use in fanless devices. In combination with an SSD (M.2 or mSATA modules) this results in a completely silent operation. Only the Yoga 11e has an active fan for its Bay Trail SoC, which is always audible at 33 - 34 dB(A).

Temperature

Stress test 500/300 MHz (CPU/GPU) after one hour
Stress test 500/300 MHz (CPU/GPU) after one hour
Stress test start CPU @700 MHz
Stress test start CPU @700 MHz
Stress test 10 min CPU @500 MHz
Stress test 10 min CPU @500 MHz

The surface temperatures while idling are only a few degrees higher compared to the room temperature. The increase is not very high under load when you look at the average and the majority of areas. The palm rest, for example, never surpasses 27 °C (80.6 °F). We can see one hotspot during our stress test that reaches up to 43 °C (109.4 °F), a low warming for a fanless chassis, which is confirmed when we look at the temperatures of the rivals. All Core M devices are getting a bit warmer, but the difference is marginal. 

We check the Turbo Boost utilization of the Core M under sustained load in the stress test with Prime95 and FurMark simultaneously for one hour. While the CPU clock already dropped to 700 MHz right after the start, the SoC is at 500 and 300 MHz (CPU/GPU), respectively, after one hour. This is also the reason for the rather low power consumption under stress. Applications with short peak load are not affected by this throttling. Cinebench R11.5 starts with 2 GHz and then drops to 1.4 GHz. Light GPU load is executed with the full 800 MHz, but FurMark is already too complex (300 MHz). Immediately after the stress test 3DMark 2006 determined a similar score compared to a cold run. The internal temperatures of the SoC are not critical at up to 73 °C (163.4 °F) thanks to the very conservative temperature restrictions.

Lenovo Yoga 3 11 80J8001WGE
HD Graphics 5300, 5Y10c, Lite-On IT L8T-128L9G
Asus Transformer Book T300 Chi
HD Graphics 5300, 5Y71, SanDisk SSD i110 128GB
Dell Venue 11 Pro 7140
HD Graphics 5300, 5Y10a, Sandisk X110 M.2 SD6SP1M-128G
Acer Aspire Switch 12 SW5-271-61X7
HD Graphics 5300, 5Y10c, 128 GB SATA SSD
Lenovo ThinkPad Yoga 11e 20D9000QGE
HD Graphics (Bay Trail), N2930, Toshiba MQ01ACF050
Heat
-13%
-16%
-5%
7%
Maximum Upper Side *
36.6
43.4
-19%
46.3
-27%
43.6
-19%
34
7%
Maximum Bottom *
43.2
43
-0%
47
-9%
43.4
-0%
36.5
16%
Idle Upper Side *
26.5
32.4
-22%
30.6
-15%
27.5
-4%
27.3
-3%
Idle Bottom *
29.1
31.6
-9%
33.3
-14%
27.6
5%
27.4
6%

* ... smaller is better

 26.5 °C
80 F
26.4 °C
80 F
26 °C
79 F
 
 25.3 °C
78 F
26.2 °C
79 F
25.2 °C
77 F
 
 24.6 °C
76 F
23.9 °C
75 F
25 °C
77 F
 
Maximum: 26.5 °C = 80 F
Average: 25.5 °C = 78 F
29.1 °C
84 F
28.2 °C
83 F
28.2 °C
83 F
26 °C
79 F
26.7 °C
80 F
26 °C
79 F
24.5 °C
76 F
24 °C
75 F
24.4 °C
76 F
Maximum: 29.1 °C = 84 F
Average: 26.3 °C = 79 F
Power Supply (max.)  31.2 °C = 88 F | Room Temperature 21.4 °C = 71 F | Voltcraft IR-360
(+) The average temperature for the upper side under maximal load is 31.1 °C / 88 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 36.6 °C / 98 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 43.2 °C / 110 F, compared to the average of 36.5 °C / 98 F
(+) In idle usage, the average temperature for the upper side is 25.5 °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 26.5 °C / 79.7 F and are therefore cool to the touch.
(+) The average temperature of the palmrest area of similar devices was 29.1 °C / 84.4 F (+2.6 °C / 4.7 F).

Speakers

The speakers are located at the bottom and direct the sound towards the table, which then reflects it. This causes the sound to change when you move the Yoga 11 around, cover the speakers with your hands or if you put it on a carpet. The sound spectrum of the small speakers is focused on the medium tones, but there are hardly any bass or differentiated high tones. The maximum volume is sufficient, and there are no distortions even at the highest volume.

Energy Management

Power Consumption

Devices that are charged via USB port often revealed drawbacks in the past. The low current sometimes resulted in extremely long charging times or the battery was not charged at all when you stressed the device. This is not the case for the Yoga 11 – the manufacturer uses a powerful 40-watt power adaptor. The high current is realized with a special connector that does not fit into other USB ports. The result is a fast charging time of just 2.5 hours when the Yoga is idling.

Lenovo Yoga 3 11 80J8001WGE
HD Graphics 5300, 5Y10c, Lite-On IT L8T-128L9G
Dell Venue 11 Pro 7140
HD Graphics 5300, 5Y10a, Sandisk X110 M.2 SD6SP1M-128G
Acer Aspire Switch 12 SW5-271-61X7
HD Graphics 5300, 5Y10c, 128 GB SATA SSD
Lenovo ThinkPad Yoga 11e 20D9000QGE
HD Graphics (Bay Trail), N2930, Toshiba MQ01ACF050
Power Consumption
-18%
-43%
-44%
Idle Minimum *
2.9
2
31%
4.1
-41%
4.6
-59%
Idle Average *
5.5
5.9
-7%
8
-45%
7.8
-42%
Idle Maximum *
5.7
6.2
-9%
9.3
-63%
8.9
-56%
Load Average *
11.3
19.1
-69%
16.3
-44%
14.8
-31%
Load Maximum *
13.6
18.2
-34%
16.8
-24%
17.8
-31%

* ... smaller is better

Power Consumption
Off / Standbydarklight 0.1 / 0.7 Watt
Idledarkmidlight 2.9 / 5.5 / 5.7 Watt
Load midlight 11.3 / 13.6 Watt
 color bar
Key: min: dark, med: mid, max: light        Voltcraft VC 960

Battery Runtime

The very good battery runtime of 7:23 hours in the Wi-Fi test is only beaten by the 9:22 hours of the Dell Venue 11 Pro 7140. However, we still used the old WLAN script for the Dell, so the results are not completely comparable. Without the dock (secondary battery integrated), the Venue only manages 358 minutes in the WLAN test, about six hours.

The idle runtimes are close, even though the idle consumption actually shows significant differences. The different battery capacities enable the similar results. Our review unit manages longer runtimes under load than the Transformer Book T300 Chi, for example. The supposedly identical SoC is clocked slightly higher in the system. Our Yoga 3 11 also throttles pretty quickly to 800 MHz under load, while the Transformer Book can maintain 2.2 GHz.

Battery Runtime
WiFi v1.3 (sort by value)
Lenovo Yoga 3 11 80J8001WGE
HD Graphics 5300, 5Y10c, Lite-On IT L8T-128L9G
443 min ∼149%
Asus Transformer Book T300 Chi
HD Graphics 5300, 5Y71, SanDisk SSD i110 128GB
236 min ∼79%
Lenovo ThinkPad Yoga 11e 20D9000QGE
HD Graphics (Bay Trail), N2930, Toshiba MQ01ACF050
297 min ∼100%
WiFi (sort by value)
Dell Venue 11 Pro 7140
HD Graphics 5300, 5Y10a, Sandisk X110 M.2 SD6SP1M-128G
562 min ∼156%
Acer Aspire Switch 12 SW5-271-61X7
HD Graphics 5300, 5Y10c, 128 GB SATA SSD
360 min ∼100%
Battery Runtime
Idle (without WLAN, min brightness)
14h 16min
NBC WiFi Websurfing Battery Test 1.3
7h 23min
Load (maximum brightness)
4h 20min

Pros

+ Light and sturdy chassis
+ IPS display with good colors and viewing angles
+ Long battery runtimes
+ Good display brightness
+ Silent
+ Three full-size USB ports & HDMI
+ Reasonable pricing
+ Usable performance for Windows
+ Easy maintenance

Cons

- Weak feedback of the mechanical input devices
- Screen bleeding when you use it as a tablet

Verdict

In Review: Lenovo Yoga 3 11. Test model courtesy of Lenovo Germany
In Review: Lenovo Yoga 3 11. Test model courtesy of Lenovo Germany

The Lenovo Yoga 3 11 does many things right, but it cannot convince us completely in the end. However, this is the case for the majority of devices. Positive aspects of the Yoga 3 are the compact and light chassis, which does not create any noise in operation. The ports are convenient with three USB ports and Micro-HDMI, and the battery runtime of 7:23 hours is even very good. It is possible to maintain the Yoga 11; you only require a small Torx screwdriver. The IPS display creates decent colors and has wide viewing angles, but the problems actually start here.

Pressure on the edges will result in screen bleeding; other issues are the inconvenient feedback of the mechanical input devices as well as the weak camera. The performance is not sufficient for gaming, but this will hardly be a problem for potential buyers. Still, the quick throttling of the processor and graphics Turbo Boost is a drawback. 

All in all, the Lenovo Yoga 3 is a comparatively inexpensive Core M convertible that will be useful at home or on the road.

If you need a more productive device, you should have a closer look at the Acer Switch 12. The multi-mode device can be used in many situations, and the Laptop mode is even one of the best modes. Another alternative for mobile workaholics is the Dell Venue 11 Pro 7140, but the keyboard is not much better.

Lenovo Yoga 3 11 80J8001WGE - 05/27/2015 v4(old)
Sebastian Jentsch

Chassis
85 / 98 → 87%
Keyboard
65%
Pointing Device
78%
Connectivity
55 / 80 → 69%
Weight
74 / 35-78 → 91%
Battery
91%
Display
79%
Games Performance
48 / 68 → 71%
Application Performance
72 / 87 → 83%
Temperature
91%
Noise
100%
Audio
56 / 91 → 62%
Camera
46 / 85 → 54%
Average
72%
81%
Convertible - Weighted Average

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> Notebook / Laptop Reviews and News > Reviews > Archive of our own reviews > Lenovo Yoga 3 11 Convertible Review
Sebastian Jentsch, 2015-06- 4 (Update: 2018-05-15)
Andreas Osthoff
Andreas Osthoff - Senior Editor Business
I grew up with computers and modern consumer electronics. I am interested in the technology since I had my first computer, a Commodore C64, and started building my own PCs after that. My focus here at Notebookcheck is the business segment including mobile workstations, but I also like to test new mobile devices. It is always a great experience to review and compare new products. My free time is filled with a lot of sports, in the summer mainly on my bike.