Lenovo Yoga Duet 7i Review: Lightweight Convertible, Easily Portable!

Can we just call it a 'Laplet'?

by: - Last updated on: October 14th, 2021
Key Takeaways
  • The Lenovo Yoga Duet 7i is a compact convertible not just by size, but by weight too.
  • It comes with a detachable Bluetooth keyboard and a Pen bundled with the package.
  • The device sports an 11th gen Intel Core i5 – 1135G7 chipset with 8GB of RAM and 512GB of SSD storage.
  • Is the Yoga Duet 7i the perfect hybrid solution? Let’s find out.

A 2-in-1 convertible focuses on the best of both worlds – a conventional laptop and a Windows tablet. The convertibles market has its fair share in terms of numbers for its flexibility and compactness. But what exactly is the Yoga Duet 7i? A tablet wannabe laptop with its external keyboard, or a perfect hybrid solution for users wanting to taste two dishes at the same time? Let’s have a look at our full review of the Lenovo Yoga Duet 7i.

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Build and Design

When you pick up the Yoga Duet 7i, it feels very light in hand, while at the same time, its metal design makes for a sturdy build. The aesthetics of the device are kept clean, aside from an off-center rear camera. If you have a penchant for symmetry, then this might bother you a bit. Other than that, the device looks pleasing to the eyes and is very well made.

The Yoga Duet 7i weighs just 800 grams, which is well distributed. On the other hand, the detachable keyboard weighs over 370 grams, and the total weight of the combo is 1.15 kg. Even with the keyboard attached, the device is very light, which makes portability relatively easy.

The stand on the back opens like a flap and is made of metal. It also makes that satisfying sound of metal when you tap it with your fingers. The flap’s hinge mechanism feels sturdy and locks into any position you leave it in. It’s not too tight, either, as you can easily open and close the flap with a single thumb.

The Yoga Duet 7i has I/O ports on the left and right sides, as well as stereo speakers, a ventilation grille on the top, and connector pins for the keyboard on the bottom. The magnetic attachment of the keyboard kicks in immediately when you bring it within about 2 centimeters. The magnets are strong enough that you can hold the main unit while the keyboard hangs freely, and even vice versa.

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The underside of the keyboard is covered with a fresh fabric that is pleasant to the touch and gives the device a premium look. The bottom itself is made of fabric, which makes for a better grip when placed on a table. But fabric is a fabric, and they get dirty over time. Unfortunately, such is the case here as well! Over the course of two weeks of using the Yoga Duet 7i, some dust accumulated on the fabric, causing it to turn a bit yellowish. And over time, it’s bound to get dirtier since it can not be washed.

Display

The Lenovo Yoga Duet 7i has a 13-inch screen (LCD), of course with touch support, which gives it the characteristics of a convertible. The screen resolution is 2160 x 1350 WQHD, with a standard refresh rate of 60 Hz. The display is sharp, and the colors are balanced with a moderate saturation level. So you can go steep with the viewing angles without noticing color shifts. And oh, it’s also equipped with Dolby Vision! The display also features Gorilla Glass 3 from Corning to protect it from scratches.

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The screen is sufficiently bright, and media consumption is a great experience on this device. Blacks are deep, and there is no color bleeding when you watch scenes with darker backgrounds. Since the display also doubles as a touchscreen, it also has an oleophobic coating. Despite this coating, we did not have any issues with reflections on the glass when using the device.

The touchscreen works flawlessly with both the fingers and the stylus, which Lenovo calls the E-ink pen. The screen supports a maximum of 10 multi-touch points, and the touch sensitivity is very accurate with this panel. The pen worked very well when we took notes and drew pictures directly on the screen. But can it replace your writing pad in an office meeting? More on that later.

The only aspect that could have been improved on the display is the bezels, which could have been narrower. When you use it in landscape mode, the edges are not that noticeable. However, as soon as you turn it 90 degrees and hold it vertically, the edges become clearly visible and speak for improvement. Especially with the kind of devices, we use these days, such as smartphones, tablets, and even traditional laptops with thin bezels, the Duet 7i’s screen lacks the finishing touch here.

Performance

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The Lenovo Yoga Duet 7i is equipped with the 11th generation Intel Core i5 – 1135G7 with a base clock of 2.4 GHz and Intel Iris Xe graphics. In addition, it is coupled with 8 GB RAM, which is soldered and cannot be expanded. As for the specification, this chipset does not offer extreme performance but is more focused on energy efficiency and power consumption. But do not doubt the capabilities of this chipset because it has more than enough potential to serve.

We used the Yoga Duet 7i with many web applications and Adobe Photoshop, using it as both a laptop and a tablet. At no point did we feel that there were any bottlenecks in performance, as the device was able to handle normal tasks with ease. Temperatures were under control, but the metal case started to feel warm after an hour of continuous use. So if you hold the device with one hand in tablet mode for an extended period of time, the heat can be a bit uncomfortable.

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Despite its compact form factor, the Yoga Duet 7i has an audible fan when sitting in a quiet room. It’s not too loud, but if you have sharp ears, you can definitely hear it. In addition, the cooling system works efficiently as the device dissipates heat very quickly when you idle it after a demanding session.

We tried running Adobe Photoshop and Premiere Pro on the Yoga Duet 7i, and the device struggled with the latter. Photo editing in Photoshop went smoothly, and the stylus on the touch display makes the experience even better. However, you can not expect much in video editing as the timeline gets choppy, and the battery drains even faster.

The Lenovo Yoga Duet 7i is undoubtedly not something you are looking for to play AAA games or edit 4K videos. Instead, it focuses on providing a hybrid experience between a laptop and a tablet that can be very useful for a certain group of users. And the Yoga Duet 7i does that quite well.

What can you do flawlessly with the Lenovo Yoga Duet 7i?

  • Taking notes
  • Work with multiple Chrome Tabs at a time
  • Drawing with the stylus
  • Video conferences, meetings
  • Media consumption

Occasionally, you also push it for tasks like

  • Video editing in lighter apps like Filmora
  • Light games on low settings (Battery drain warning)

What you should not do with the Lenovo Yoga Duet 7i?

  • Playing video games with heavy graphics
  • 3D Rendering related Softwares

Keyboard and Touch

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The Yoga Duet 7i comes with the Folio Keyboard, which is magnetically attached to the main device. As a result, the keys provide very good tactile feedback when typing, and the keys do not get stuck, which is often the case with external add-on keyboards. It also has Bluetooth connectivity, so the keyboard can be used even when it is not connected to the main device.

Since the keyboard has a backlight, typing at night is very comfortable. The trackpad is a decent size and has left and right clicks on the bottom. It works great, and the clicks give good feedback as well. You can also use the pen on the touchscreen while the keyboard is connected.

The E-color pen comes bundled with the package and runs on battery. It works fine with the display and helps while taking notes or some quick doodles. The accuracy of the tip is really great as we used it to cut edges in Photoshop, and the experience was on point. The only complaint about the pen is that there is no mount on the tablet or keyboard to attach the pen. Also, the pen does not attach magnetically anywhere.

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So if you want to use the pen regularly, you’ll have to keep it either in your pocket or bag, as it can not be securely paired with the main device. However, as far as functionality is concerned, the pen works as intended and can easily accompany you in your tasks.

I/O Ports and Peripherals

The Lenovo Yoga Duet 7i comes with a limited set of I/O ports, as it’s more of a hybrid device rather than a conventional laptop. But it still gives you enough options and gets the basics right!

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Right Side

  • 1 x USB Type-C port
  • Volume UP and DOWN controls
  • Power Button
  • Right Side Speaker

Left Side

  • 1 x USB C port
  • 1 x Thunderbolt port
  • 1 x 3.5mm headphone jack
  • Micro SD card tray
  • Left Side Speaker

The Thunderbolt port and the USB Type-C port on the left can be used for charging since they support USB PD 3.0. The USB Type-C port on the right, on the other hand, is always active and is used to connect peripherals and accessories. In addition, the presence of a Thunderbolt port provides support for external displays, so you can connect this device to a larger screen if needed.

The Yoga Duet 7i has two webcams, one on the front and one on the back. Both have a resolution of 5 megapixels, and the quality is fine, just like any other webcam. They have a fixed focus, and the pictures and videos have a limited amount of detail. It is easy enough for video calls. However, the front camera is aligned right in the middle, while the rear camera is placed more on the right side. Perhaps there was not enough room to align both cameras in the center, but it is good that the front camera is centered. Otherwise, an uncentered front webcam would have bothered many, starting with us.

Software Experience: Windows 11 Ready?

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The Lenovo Yoga Duet 7i runs Windows 10 Home and comes bundled with Microsoft Office Home. You also get an IR camera for Windows Hello, which worked really well and always recognized our faces. In addition, the Windows experience is smooth, and the interface does not stutter or lag even when the battery is low.

Amazon Alexa is pre-installed on the Yoga Duet 7i so that you can control your smart devices in your home. This is not an exclusive feature, but the regular Alexa app can be downloaded from the Microsoft App Store to any Windows computer. It’s fun to play around with, but you need to have the Alexa app running in the background, or the voice commands will not work.

But what about Windows 11? Since the Yoga Duet 7i ships with TPM 2.0, the Windows Compatibility Tool shows that the device is ready for Windows 11. However, the update has not been officially rolled out to our device yet. Since the hardware requirements are met, the Yoga Duet 7i should receive the Windows 11 update soon. [P.S: Here’s our guide on how to manually upgrade to Windows 11]

Using the Yoga Duet 7i as a Tablet

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The Yoga Duet 7i becomes a great companion when you use it as a standalone tablet. Even without the pen, the touchscreen is very responsive, and you do not feel much different from a smartphone. And when you use it as a tablet, the thicker horizontal edges help keep the tablet in a vertical position, but aesthetically they still look bad.

Combined with the pen, certain tasks that require accuracy can be done much faster. You’ll definitely love the pen if you are editing photos, creating a presentation, or using Canva extensively. As a Windows tablet, the Yoga Duet 7i can do everything you would want a Windows laptop to do while also being a tablet.

Using the Yoga Duet 7i as a Laptop

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Since the design of the Yoga Duet 7i is similar to that of the Microsoft Surface Pro, you ideally cannot keep the device right on your lap since the screen does not stay upright with the keyboard connected. If you place it on a table instead, it works quite well, but it is not perfect. For example, if the keyboard is magnetically attached, the main screen wobbles significantly when typing.

This is mainly because the tablet is attached to the keyboard in such a way that it uses the fabric as a base. So when you type, the fabric does not support the screen enough to keep it upright and transfers the wobble to the screen. For this reason, we mainly used the keyboard in Bluetooth mode instead of connecting it directly to the tablet.

Battery Life

The Yoga Duet 7i’s 41 Wh battery can easily last through your work sessions, but it is not exceptional. The device lasts about 5.5 hours on average, with a single full charge during typical use. We used the device daily to write many Google documents, attend meetings, and consume videos on YouTube and Amazon Prime, and the battery life was always in the 5-6 hour range.

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The battery drains faster when you use power-consuming apps like emulators, which in our case were NOX App Player and VM Ware Workstation for testing purposes. The battery life drops to about 4 hours with these applications.

The 65 W charging adapter takes about 2 hours to charge the Yoga Duet 7i from 0% to 100%. The charging speed is slightly slower when you charge the device during use. The metallic back gets warm when you plug it in at about 10%, but it eventually cools down when the battery charge reaches over 80%.

Should you buy the Lenovo Yoga Duet 7i?

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The Lenovo Yoga Duet 7i delivers everything it’s supposed to: a balanced experience between a Windows tablet and a traditional laptop without compromising on performance. Moreover, the fact that a keyboard and stylus are included gives it an edge over rivals like the Microsoft Surface Pro, which requires accessories to be purchased separately. Priced at Rs. 79,990/-, it is a good buy if you are looking for a convertible device.

If you look at the available options for this exact design, then you have Microsoft’s Surface Pro, which is a bit more expensive. Of course, you can also get away with unorthodox alternatives like an iPad with a Bluetooth keyboard and Apple Pencil. But a keyboard that matches the footprint of the main tablet and easily snaps into place for portability makes the Lenovo Yoga Duet 7i a good option to consider at this price.

Pros
  • Good display with excellent touch
  • Portable and lightweight
  • Easily detachable keyboard
  • Windows Hello Support (IR Camera)
  • Keyboard and Pen included in the package
Cons
  • Screen wobbles during typing when the keyboard is attached
  • No bracket to attach the Pen
  • Battery life could have been better
  • The base fabric of the keyboard gets dusty
Review Overview
Build & Design
Display
Performance
Battery Life
Price
SUMMARY

The Lenovo Yoga Duet 7i is a great convertible that can be a tablet by the day, and a laptop by night. It gets the basics of a tablet right with its display, touch, pen, and performance while still allowing you to use it as your primary Windows machine.

3.9

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