Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Titanium Yoga Review: A premium 2-in-1 for business travelers

Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Titanium Gen 1

Josh Goldman / CNET

The X1 Titanium Yoga is the thinnest ThinkPad ever. At 11.5 millimeters (0.45 inches) and with a 13.5-inch 2K resolution 450-nit screen with a 3: 2 aspect ratio, it does not take up much more space in a backpack than a spiral-bound notebook with a single subject. It also weighs only 1.1 kg, which is almost no more than X1 Nano, Lenovo’s lightest ThinkPad to date at 907 grams. Despite the thin and light frame, however, the X1 feels solid enough to stop being beaten around on flights or a daily commute. And the high screen means you get more vertical space to work, but the laptop is no wider than a 13.3-inch laptop. My point is that this is a great design for frequent business travelers, and I did not even mention all the privacy and security features yet. However, the X1 Titanium Yoga is a first generation, and although it is good, there is some room for improvement.

Like

  • Thin, strong 2-in-1 body
  • High quality 3: 2 screen
  • Lots of security and privacy features
  • Lenovo Precision Pen included

Dislike

  • Performance, battery life is nothing special for the price

Prices for The ThinkPad X1 Titanium Yoga currently starts at $ 1,355, £ 1,670 in the UK and AU $ 2,949 in Australia. The configuration I tested, and as you can see in the chart below, is $ 1,440, which is more than reasonable for what you get. But that’s the price as I write this. A few days ago it was $ 2,147, making this a much harder laptop to recommend. Needless to say, if you are interested in buying this laptop, look for a sale or contact Lenovo directly to get the best price.

Business laptops are typically more expensive than consumer models due to things like better security and external IT features, repairability and greater durability. For the X1 Titanium Yoga, this means a Mil-Spec-tested chassis constructed of titanium and carbon fiber for the lid and magnesium-aluminum alloy at the bottom; a match-on-chip fingerprint reader (the biometric info is stored on the reader, not the computer) with anti-spoofing technology; and an IR camera for face recognition. The BIOS is also curative, meaning it can repair itself from a backup in the event of a malicious attack or an unsuccessful or interrupted update.

Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Titanium Gen 1

The titanium lid is new for ThinkPads.

Josh Goldman / CNET

The X1 Titanium Yoga also has an ultra-wideband radar sensor that can tell you when to walk away from it and quickly lock your laptop. It can also be felt when you return and automatically wake up and unlock it. Called Detection of human presence, it is at the same time amazing and a bit creepy. This setting and many more can be controlled via the laptop’s commercial Vantage app.

In the app you will find everything from battery and power settings to sound adjustments for its microphones and speakers to turn on and off the keyboard’s various shortcut keys. As you might expect, the controls are designed to enhance your work experience, such as setting up your laptop’s microphones – there are four of them – and speakers to enhance your VoIP call quality while suppressing keyboard noise.

Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Titanium Yoga

Price as reviewed

$ 1,440

Screen size / resolution

13.5-inch 2,256×1,504-pixel touch screen

CPU

2.1 GHz Intel Core i7-1160G7

Memory

16GB 4267MHz LPDDR4X (built-in)

Graphics

128 MB Intel Iris Xe graphics

Storage

512 GB PCIe NVMe SSD

Network

802.11ax wireless, Bluetooth 5.1

Connections

Thunderbolt 4 USB-C (x2), 3.5 mm audio jack

Operating system

Windows 10 Pro (2H02)

There are always trade-offs when making a laptop so thin and light, but Lenovo manages to keep things comfortable. For example, it has a 13.5-inch screen that gives you some extra vertical space to work compared to a 16: 9 screen. In addition, its 2K resolution is a reasonable compromise between full HD and 4K, and it can hit a brightness level of 450 nits (for working in bright conditions) and covers 100% of the sRGB color scale. The screen looks great right out of the box.

Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Titanium Gen 1

The keyboard is good, but the haptic touchpad needed some tweaking.

Josh Goldman / CNET

Despite its thinness, the keyboard is also comfortable. I’ve seen user complaints about how this model’s keyboard is not as good as previous ThinkPads, and to some extent that’s true. However, these were better keyboards in much thicker bodies. Again, considering what Lenovo was working on here, it’s a good keyboard.

The touchpad, on the other hand, could be better. It’s small, in part because this model has the familiar ThinkPad TrackPoint nub and its associated mouse buttons above the touchpad. It also matches the screen ratio, so it’s simply not that wide. Lenovo also used one haptic touchpad made by Sensel which eliminates moving parts but also means that clicks are simulated. The settings outside the box caused me some frustration with tracking and click detection. But the touchpad has its own control panel, and when I adjusted it somewhat, it worked fine.

Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Titanium Gen 1

The portable body is hardly thicker than the included active pen.

Josh Goldman / CNET

The port range of the X1 Titanium Yoga is limited to two Thunderbolt 4 USB-C ports and a 3.5 mm headset connector – however Thunderbolt 4 handles all your connection needs and power with a single cable and the right USB-C hub. Plus, it charges quickly using the Thunderbolt 4 as well, but I wish the two ports were split so you could charge from the left or right. Speaking of charging, battery life is a bit disappointing after 9 hours, 29 minutes on our streaming video test.

This laptop is also not quite the workhorse you might expect for a premium device – a price for being so thin – but it’s snappy for typical office productivity. Like the X1 Nano, the value of the X1 Titanium Yoga lies in its durable lightweight design, high-quality display and all the extra features that make it easier to pick up and start using quickly. Not to mention the security and confidentiality settings. Also, the two-in-one design gives it an edge over the Nano, in my opinion, so if you choose between the two, Yoga wins.

Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Titanium Gen 1

X1 Titanium Yoga stays thin even in tablet mode.

Josh Goldman / CNET

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