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Lenovo Yoga C940 review: 14- and 15.6-inches of laptop computing elegance

Lenovo Yoga C940 laptops stacked

With 4K UHD options as well as a relatively thin and lightweight design, the Lenovo YOGA 940 is a slick looking laptop with decent performance.

As we mentioned in our last Lenovo laptop review, Lenovo is one company that has many, many options when it comes to laptops. If you can think of a style or use case scenario, Lenovo has a laptop for you whether it’s for business or personal use. Our Lenovo Yoga C940 review takes a look at the 14 and 15-inch versions of the company’s newest 2-in-1 laptops which are pretty elegant looking. Read on to see what we thought of them!

Specifications

The Lenovo Yoga C940 laptops sent to us have the following features and specifications (configurable when ordering):

Model14″: C940-14IIL 81Q9
15″: C940-15IRH 81TE
Display14″: 14″ UHD (3840 x 2160) IPS, touchscreen, glossy, HDR 400, 500nits (14” FHD (1920 x 1080) IPS, touchscreen, glossy, 400 nits available)
15″: 15.6” FHD (1920 x 1080) IPS, glossy, touchscreen, VESA-Certified Display HDR™ 400 with Dolby Vision™, 500 nits (15.6” UHD (3840 x 2160) IPS, glossy, touchscreen, VESA-Certified Display HDR™ 400 with Dolby Vision™, 500 nits also available)
CPU14″: Intel i7-1065G7 @ 1.3GHz, up to 3.90GHz with Turbo Boost (10th Gen Intel Core i5 also available)
15″: Intel® Core™ i7-9750H Processor (2.60 GHz, up to 4.50 GHz with Turbo Boost, 6 Cores, 12 Threads, 12 MB Cache), (Up to 9th Generation Intel® Core™ i9-9880H with vPro (2.30GHz, up to 4.80GHz with Turbo Boost, 8 cores, 16MB Cache) available)
RAM14″: 16GB LPDDR4X 3733 MHz
15″: 16GB DDR4 2666MHz
Storage14″: 512GB+32GB Optane SSD (up to 2TB SSD PCIe available)
15″: 512GB+32GB Optane SSD (Up to 2TB SSD, PCIe-NVMe M.2 available)
Graphics14″: Intel Iris Plus Graphics
15″: NVIDIA® GeForce® GTX 1650 4GB
Camera720p HD
AudioRotating Sound Bar with Dolby Atmos Speaker System
2x far-field microphones
Keyboard14″: Backlit
15″: Backlit with numeric keypad
Connectivity14″: Intel® 802.11AX (2 x 2) WiFi 6 or Intel® 802.11AC (2 x 2), Bluetooth 5.0
15: Intel® 802.11AC (2 x 2) WiFi 6, Bluetooth 5.0
Ports14″: 2x USB 3.1 Gen 2 Type-C / Intel Thunderbolt™ 3 (Power Delivery, DisplayPort), USB-A 3.1 Gen 2, Headphone/mic combo
15″: 2x USB 3.1 Gen 2 Type-C / Intel Thunderbolt™ 3 (Power Delivery, DisplayPort), 1x USB-A 3.1 Gen 1, Headphone/mic combo
Battery14″: 4 Cell (up to 15 hours FHD, 12 hours with UHD)
15″: 4 Cell (up to 12 hours with FHD, 9 hours with UHD), Rapid Charge
SecurityFingerprint reader
TrueBlock Privacy Shutter
Operating SystemWindows 10 Home (Windows 10 Pro available)
ColoursIron Grey, MICA available for 14-inch
Dimensions14″: 320.3 x 215.6 x 14.5-15.7mm (12.61 x 8.54 x 0.57-0.61”)
15″: 355.2 x 238.39 x 17.5-19.7mm (13.98 x 9.38 x 0.68-0.77”)
Weight14″: Starting at 2.89 lbs (1.35 kg)
15″: Starting at 4.41 lbs (2.0 kg)

What’s in the box

  • 14″ Yoga C940-14IIL
    • Yoga C940 14″
    • Lenovo Pen
    • 65W AC adapter
    • 4 Cell 60Wh internal battery
    • Quick start guide
  • 15.6″ Yoga C940-15IRH
    • Yoga C940 15.6”
    • Lenovo Pen
    • 135W AC adapter
    • 4 Cell 69Wh internal battery
    • Quick start guide
What's included with the Lenovo Yoga C940 15" laptop
What’s included with the Lenovo Yoga C940 15″ laptop.

Design

There’s no question the Lenovo Yoga C940 laptops are sleek looking. Both the 14- and 15-inch versions look very similar with a few minor differences which I’ll point out when I get there. Our 15-inch review unit came in the Iron Grey colour while the 14-inch we reviewed was the goldish Mica colour. The lids on both are smooth with the Yoga logo imprinted in a glossy finish in the upper left corner (when looking at the laptop from the back with the lid raised).

When the laptop is closed, the wide hinge has the Lenovo logo on one side and seven or nine rows of dots, depending on the laptop size. These dots are actually part of the rotating Dolby Atmos soundbar Lenovo has implemented in the design. Opening up each laptop and you’ll find the same Lenovo logo and row of dots which gives it an interesting look. More on that later in the sound section. This hinge also allows the laptop screen to flip around so it can be used in laptop, tent, stand, or tablet mode.

Once opened, the display has a thin physical top and side borders with slightly thicker in-screen borders. The bottom on both is a bit thicker as well. The front-facing camera is centered in the top and includes a privacy shutter. When closed, a red dot appears in the middle of the camera to let you know the camera is turned off/hidden from broadcasting your image.

The Lenovo Yoga C940 14- (left) and 15-inch laptops
The Lenovo Yoga C940 14- (left) and 15-inch laptops.

Both laptops sport chiclet-style keyboards, the 15-inch a full-sized keyboard with number pad while the 14-inch does without the number pad. Both feature five full-sized rows and a sixth half-height row on the top. The top row is where your function keys, volume, brightness, and other controls are located. In addition, the 15-inch model has media playback controls just above the number pad. While both laptops were decent enough for typing, I did like the 15-inch C940 better as the 14-inch keyboard felt a bit soft and spongy.

The trackpad is centered for the most part under the spacebar on the 14-inch model with the fingerprint scanner under the far right of the keyboard. On the 15-inch model, however, the touchpad is more to the left, being centered under the spacebar. The fingerprint scanner is towards the right, but not quite to the edge of the alphanumeric keyboard and to the left of the numpad.

The left side of each laptop has four ports. Both have a 3.5mm audio jack and two USB Type-C ports. On the 14-inch, the charging is provided over USB Type-C so the final port near the back is USB-A. On the 15-inch, however, the laptop is powered by Lenovo’s rectangular power plug so that port is near the back. On the right side of each, you’ll find the power button near the back. On the 15-inch, you’ll also find a USB-A port towards the back and the included Active Pen slot towards the front.

The back and front edges of the Yoga C940 are pretty clean, with one difference between them both. The Active Pen slot is on the back right edge (when using the laptop) instead of towards the front on the right edge of the 15-inch version. In the middle of the front, on the lid edge, is a piece the juts out slightly with the words Yoga 9 SERIES stamped into it for a nice elegant touch.

The Lenovo Yoga c940 14- and 15-inch laptops have sleek details
The Lenovo Yoga c940 14- and 15-inch laptops have sleek details.

The bottom of each laptop is relatively the same. Each sports long thin rubber strips near the front and the back to raise the laptop up slightly when used on a desk. In front of the back one are two rows of vents for airflow. The main dual speakers are near the front, towards the side edges on the larger model and towards the front edge on the smaller model.

One thing I did find, however, was that they were both kind of hard to open with one hand. Even though the lid does have the middle piece that juts out slightly, there’s not much grip there for single handed opening as it tends to life the entire front of the laptop up. It’s minor and I did get around it, but I find it’s not as easy to open as other laptops.

Overall though, the Lenovo Yoga C940 laptops are some of the sleekest looking I’ve seen.

Display

Both models come with a number of screen options. For our review units, the 14″ came with a 4K display while our 15.6″ model came with an FHD 1080p display.

The 14" UHD display on the Lenovo Yoga C940 14" laptop
The 14″ UHD display on the Lenovo Yoga C940 14″ laptop.

Yoga C940 14″

Our Lenovo Yoga C940 14-inch review unit came with the 4K UHD screen. With UHD on a 14-inch screen, however, I find I have to scale Windows 10 to about 250-300%. Even zoomed, it is nice and crisp. It’s great for watching 4K UHD HDR content from Netflix as well as editing photos and videos. While the higher resolution can translate into more real estate on larger screens, due to the scale level, you’re not getting much more real estate for working here.

Yoga C940 15.6″

For the most part, 1080p is still a decent resolution for a 15.6-inch laptop. Text is easy to ready and is still pretty crisp for the most part. While there is a noticeable difference between a 1080p and 4K display, to be honest, it doesn’t really affect my productivity either way. The one benefit to a lower resolution screen is longer battery life, which we’ll discuss shortly.

General display observations

In the case of both systems, the touchscreen was responsive and worked as expected. However, being a touchscreen, the glossy screen made it a bit hard to work in brighter conditions, like outside on the deck. Unfortunately, you’re not going to really be able to get away from that too much unless you order a matte screen protector.

The operating system responded depending on the type of orientation (laptop, stand, tent, or tablet) mode used and I didn’t have any issues performing tasks with the touchscreen. While 4K UHD may seem overkill on a smaller screen, it is definitely very crisp. That being said, the FHD resolution on the 15-inch was decent enough and should suffice for most users. Really, it depends on what type of work you do and if you’re willing to sacrifice battery life with a higher resolution screen.

Software

As far as software is concerned, the Lenovo C940 Yoga is available with Windows 10 Home or Windows 10 Pro. Windows 10 Home will work for most users while Pro adds a few more business-focused options.

There are a few extra applications that come pre-installed, but not many. Aside from Lenovo Vantage, LenovoUtility, and Lenovo Pen Settings, the C940 ships with a McAfee trial pre-installed as well. Lenovo Vantage allows users to easily update drivers, run diagnostics, request support, and even learn more about the features and functionality of the C940. LenovoUtility shows an onscreen icon whenever one of the Fn keys is pressed while Lenovo Pen Settings let you configure the Lenovo Active Pen. Finally, McAfee is one of two anti-virus programs that come pre-installed on most systems. Personally, I uninstall McAfee and just use the default Windows 10 security software.

Performance

With 16GB of RAM and 512GB SSDs, both systems performed well, albeit with slightly different configurations. The biggest difference I found in performance was when running games with the 15.6-inch performing better due to the better video card and lower resolution screen. As for daily business type applications, both systems performed just fine. I had no issues with editing photos through Lightroom or Photoshop and editing 4K video on either system with Premiere was more than adequate. I could have multiple tabs open in Microsoft Edge at the same time as editing photos and I could switch back and forth with ease and without any noticeable lag or slow down. Given both systems as reviewed were powered by Intel Core i7 processors, I didn’t expect anything less performance-wise.

Both systems also come with the Lenovo Pen. While I tend to navigate fast enough with a mouse and keyboard, having a pen included actually enticed me to use the touchscreen functionality a lot more for some tasks. Once I got used to it, I didn’t have any issues with using the pen instead of a mouse.

Sound Quality

As mentioned above, the Yoga C940-series 2-in-1 laptops have a rotating soundbar in the hinge in addition to the two speakers under the bottom. One of the main issues with sound on a 2-in-1 laptop is that it changes depending on how you have the system orientated.

The rotating soundbar hinge on the Lenovo Yoga C940 laptops feature Dolby Atmos sound
The rotating soundbar hinge on the Lenovo Yoga C940 laptops feature Dolby Atmos sound.

I have to admit, when I first noticed the soundbar in the hinge, I immediately appreciated the innovation. That would be assuming, of course, that it worked as advertised. When coupled with the normal downfiring speakers, the soundbar hinge definitely adds extra output and an extra level of surround to the laptop. I’ve watched movies on laptops before, sometimes begrudgingly due to sound, other times with headphones attached. In the case of the C940s however, I can honestly say that you won’t mind watching movies on it without having to reach for headphones.

The sound is not only clear, crisp, and loud, but it also has a better stage presence when watching videos or playing games. Even listening to music is more enjoyable with a fuller sound. While you’re still not going to be getting stellar bass levels, they are better than most laptops. All in all, adding an integrated soundbar in the hinge is a great use of this usually wasted space. It’s something I’d love to see implemented in even more laptops, not just 2-in-1s as it’ll be sure to give laptops across the board a decent sound boost.

Camera

When it comes to the cameras on the Lenovo Yoga C940-series laptops, it’s pretty standard fare. Both are equipped with a 720p webcam centered on the top of the screen. As we’ve mentioned here before, it’d be nice to see 1080p webcams on laptops become the norm, especially given more people being forced to work from home. On that note, the 720p camera is more than suitable for work and other video-conferencing when needed.

As seems to be standard on Lenovo laptops as of late, the Yoga C940s have a TrueBlock Privacy Shutter. A physical shutter, it slides over the front-facing webcam to give you privacy when not in use. When covered, an orange dot is displayed where the camera is.

Battery Life

As I’ve mentioned in previous reviews, I’m notoriously hard on laptops when it comes to battery life. I personally refuse to use the best battery setting which is where most companies get their long battery life claims from. I much personally prefer the better performance setting and will begrudgingly use the better battery for testing.

Tasks for testing including basic web browsing, document edition, and the odd video watching. Even with its lower 1080p resolution on the 15.6-inch version, I was only able to get about 5 hours of battery life on better performance. This included using it at 75% brightness, no backlighting on the keyboard, an external mouse, and Wi-Fi connection. When set to better battery, I was able to get about 6 1/2 hours.

Interestingly enough, the 14-inch version, with its 4K display and smaller screen got about 6 hours with the same parameters as the 15.6-inch on better performance. On better battery, I was able to get about 7 hours on a single charge. Given Lenovo claims up to 10 hours on a single charge for the UHD model we tested (up to 15 hours for the FHD screen), it’s not too bad considering we weren’t using the best battery setting.

Price/Value

With a starting MSRP of US$1,099.99 for the Lenovo Yoga C940 14″ and $1,359.99 for the 15.6″ version, these laptops are pretty reasonably priced for what you get. Of course, the more upgrades you add, the pricier these become. For example, the 14-inch with Intel Core i7, 16GB RAM, UHD display, and 2TB SSD will cost just under $1,800. On the other hand, the 15.6-inch UHD version with 16GB of RAM and a 2TB SSD will set you back just under $2600. Still, at that price you are getting a pretty beefy, thin, slick looking laptop with great performance.

Wrap-up

While the Lenovo Yoga C740 laptops are geared more towards the average consumer, the Yoga C940 series will meet the demands of creatives and business professionals. With 4K UHD options as well as a relatively thin and lightweight design, the Lenovo Yoga 940 is a slick-looking laptop with decent performance.

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Lenovo YOGA C940 14"

US$1,099+

Design

9.5/10

Display

9.5/10

Software

9.5/10

Performance

9.5/10

Sound Quality

9.5/10

Camera

8.0/10

Battery Life

8.5/10

Price?Value

9.5/10

Nailed it

  • Sleek, light design
  • Fantastic UHD display option with HDR
  • Decent performance
  • Includes Lenovo Pen
  • Integrated rotating hinge soundbar adds to sound quality
  • Fairly reasonably priced given specs and performance

Needs work

  • Keyboard a bit soft and spongy
  • Battery life o.k.
  • Glossy, reflective screens make working outdoors difficult
  • A bit tricky to open with one hand

 

Lenovo YOGA C940 15"

US$1,359.99+

Design

9.5/10

Display

9.5/10

Software

9.5/10

Performance

9.5/10

Sound Quality

9.5/10

Camera

8.0/10

Battery Life

8.5/10

Price/Value

9.5/10

Nailed it

  • Very elegant and slick design
  • Great performance depending on specs
  • Decent FHD screen with HDR
  • Integrated rotating hinge soundbar adds to sound quality
  • Includes Lenovo Pen
  • Fairly reasonably priced given specs and performance

Needs work

  • Not the brightest at max brightness
  • 15-inch model doesn't use USB Type-C charging
  • Battery life o.k.
  • A bit tricky to open with one hand
  • Still uses proprietary Lenovo charging plug instead of USB Type-C

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