Lenovo Slim 7i Pro X review: great performance, so-so battery life
CPU: Intel Core i5-12500H or Core i7-12700H, AMD Ryzen 5 6600HS or Ryzen 7 6800HS
GPU: Intel Iris Xe, Nvidia GeForce GTX 1650/RTX 3050
RAM: 16 GB
Storage: 512 GB, 1 TB
Screen size: 14 in 3072 x 1920 IPS
Weight: 3.19 lbs (1.45 kg)
Dimensions: 12.91 x 8.7 x 0.62 in (328 x 221 x 15.9 mm)
Lenovo is one of the most respected names when it comes to productivity laptops, so it’s no surprise that the Lenovo Slim 7i Pro X and its 7 variant are set to impress when it comes to coding and photo-editing.
Opt for the Lenovo Slim 7 Pro X and you’ll get an AMD processor, and choose the 7i version if you want an Intel chip. No matter which brand you pick, you’re going to get a powerful convertible machine with plenty of ports, a reliably excellent keyboard, and a sleek aluminum exterior.
There’s no shortage of innovation and smart design here, and the prices are decent, too: on the AMD side of things, you’ll have to pay either $1,287 or £1,189 for this notebook, and those figures only rise to $1,435 and £1,330 if you’d prefer Intel silicon instead.
This bold laptop could easily earn a berth on our best laptops for coding and programming list– but before it ascends to those heights, it’s got to compete with tough rivals like the Apple MacBook Pro 13, the Microsoft Surface Laptop 4, and even the high-end Alienware x14.
Editor’s note: This laptop is called the Lenovo Slim 7i Pro X in the US, and the Lenovo Yoga Slim 7i Pro X in the UK. They’re the same model, just with different names.
Lenovo Slim 7i Pro X review: Design & features
- Chassis is compact, good-looking and sturdy, and it has a solid port selection
- On the inside you’ll find decent security and connectivity abilities
- Keyboard is typical Lenovo – which means it’s very, very good
Yoga laptops usually look great, and that’s no different on the Slim 7i Pro X – this rig’s aluminum build, fold-flat screen, and slick speaker grilles will look the part in any professional environment. It also looks more mature than the Alienware x14, which is unsurprising given that notebook’s gaming pedigree.
At 3.19 lbs (1.45 kg), the Lenovo is lighter than the Alienware and Surface notebooks and it’s hardly heavier than the MacBook. And, at 0.62 in (15.9 mm) thick, it’s slim too. The build quality is impressive, so we have no issues with recommending this machine for your daily driver, even if you’re on long commutes and tossing it into bags.
On the curved left-hand edge Lenovo has installed two Thunderbolt 4 ports and an HDMI 2.1 output. On the opposite side there’s a full-size USB port, the power button, and a physical switch to disable the webcam. That’s a practical start, and the webcam adds to its security credentials with Windows Hello support. Internally, the Slim 7i has Wi-Fi 6E and Bluetooth 5.1.
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There’s no getting away from some missing features, though. Creatives would have preferred a card reader, and there’s no fingerprint reader or wired internet. Plus, despite having Yoga in its name (for the U.K. market at least), this laptop does not fold all the way around into tablet mode. Also, if you buy the Lenovo Slim 7 Pro X – rather than the 7i – you’ll have no Thunderbolt. Still, there’s more connectivity here than you’ll find on the MacBook and Microsoft Surface. You’ll only get more from the Alienware, which has three Thunderbolt/USB-C ports and a card reader.
Lenovo bolsters its reputation for great keyboards on the Slim 7i. The buttons are slightly concave for an easier grip, and they’ve got a soft base, decent travel, and crisp action. It’s a comfortable and quiet unit that’s ideal for long days of development. However, the trackpad suffers with soft buttons, but the pad itself is huge and responsive, so it’s easy enough to whizz around.
Lenovo Slim 7i Pro X review: Specs & performance
- Intel’s Core i5-12500H and i7-12700H are both impressive work options
- Nvidia’s low-end GPUs deliver some extra gaming pace, albeit in modest titles
- Cool and quiet operation is great, although CPU speed is consequently reduced
It’s easy to assume that a slim laptop like the Yoga Slim 7i will have a low-power processor, but Lenovo hasn’t gone down the easy route. Instead, the 7i Pro X is available with Intel’s Core i5-12500H and Core i7-12700H, which are full-power mobile options. The i5-12500H has four Hyper-Threaded cores alongside a top speed of 4.5 GHz, while the i7-12700H tops out at six cores and 4.7 GHz.
The Core i7-12700H is ideal for tough coding tasks. In Geekbench (opens in new tab)’s single- and multi-core tests the Core i7 part returned scores of around 1,700 and 11,000 points, and sometimes scores around 12,000 points in the latter benchmark. Those tremendous results allow you to handle most coding, multi-tasking, and encoding scenarios. You’ll only need more power for the toughest programming tasks, and you’ll only get it if you get a desktop, a Core i9 processor, or one of the most expensive MacBook Pro 16 notebooks.
The i5-12500H is a more modest chip, with Geekbench scores that hover around 1,600 and 10,000 points. That’s still more grunt than most of Intel’s low-power Core i7 processors, so you’ve still got the ability for mainstream coding and development work, if not for the toughest situations.
If you want the Lenovo Yoga Slim 7 Pro X rather than the 7i you’ll have to choose between the AMD Ryzen 5 6600HS, Ryzen 7 6800HS, and Ryzen 9 6900HS processors. Those chips are good enough for everyday development work, but none match their Intel counterparts.
Impressively, the Slim 7i churns through development tasks without producing much noise or heat, either, although pushing the hardware for long periods does reduce processor speeds as the laptop tries to keep its thermal performance intact.
We have no big complaints about the rest of the Slim 7i’s specifications. It’s available with 16 GB of memory – which is fine for most development workloads – but consider the 32 GB option for high-end use. You’re able to choose between 512 GB and 1 TB SSDs.
On the graphics side you get Nvidia’s GeForce RTX 3050 chipset. It can play mainstream games and esports titles, and it will help with modest photo-editing workloads, but that’s about it.
You’ll get more performance from the Slim 7i than the MacBook Pro 13 and Microsoft Surface Laptop 4. The only rival that can compete is the Alienware, which offers the same CPUs and better graphics options. You’ll get even more speed from that thicker, heavier notebook, although it is louder.
Lenovo Slim 7i Pro X review: Screen & speakers
- Innovative display is tall, crisp, and offers impressive color quality and brightness
- 120 Hz refresh rate delivers smooth motion and extra gaming ability
- Speakers are good, ideal for viewing media and playing music
The Lenovo Slim 7i Pro X’s screen innovates in several ways. The 16:10 aspect ratio means you get more height than the Alienware, and the 14.5 in diagonal means this display is bigger than all of its competitors. The 3072 x 1920 resolution is high, too, and ensures that coding and photo-editing apps looks crisp – and that you’ve got plenty of space for multiple windows.
Benchmarks don’t let the screen down. The 403 nit brightness level is high enough for indoor and outdoor use, and the contrast ratio of 1259:1 is a solid IPS result that supplies ample vibrancy. The screen accurately produced all the sRGB color gamut, although it can’t render the Adobe RGB or DCI-P3 color spaces.
As well as having plenty of space, those sRGB results mean you can tackle mainstream photo-editing here. The inclusion of Nvidia G-Sync with a 120 Hz refresh rate also means animations and esports games look smooth, and the speakers are loud, punchy, and impressive.
It’s a great panel, although some other notebooks are better in specific areas. In comparison, the MacBook’s screen is ideal for DCI-P3 color work, while the Alienware has a 144 Hz refresh rate for better gaming.
Lenovo Slim 7i Pro X review: Battery life
- You’ll only get a full day of work if you’re very careful…
- … but in most situations, it’ll fall short
- Rival notebooks from Apple and Microsoft offer twice as much longevity
The Slim 7i sounds great so far, but its battery lets it down. In a mainstream work benchmark the Lenovo lasted for six hours, and you’ll have to be careful if you want to eke out a full day of work. Conversely, you’ll only make it to lunch if you try to extract more performance from the hardware.
That’s no surprise when the Slim 7i pairs a moderately-sized battery with a full-power laptop processor. Laptops like the MacBook Pro 13 and Surface will deliver twice the longevity without breaking a sweat, and only the Alienware is poorer here.
This lackluster battery life means the Slim 7i probably isn’t one of the best laptops for students who need to bounce around campus between lectures all day, but it’s fine if you have a power source at hand.
Lenovo Slim 7i Pro X review: Price
- In the U.K. (but not in the U.S.) you can get the 7i Pro X with an Core i5-12500H for £1,329.99…
- … while prices start at $1,515.25/£1,470 for the Core i7-12700H versions
- Cost of the Lenovo Slim 7 Pro X with the Ryzen 7 6800HS processor version start at $1,430
In the U.S., the 7i Pro X starts at $1,515.25 (opens in new tab) – and it’s only available with the Core i7-12700H. Doubling the memory from 16 GB to 32 GB costs $100, and switching from a 512 GB SSD to a 1 TB unit costs $65.
The 7 Pro X starts at $1,430 (opens in new tab) for the Ryzen 7 6800HS processor and 16 GB of memory. That’s a good price, even if the Core i7 model is quicker. You can also pay $1,695 for the Ryzen 9 6900HS CPU, but the i7-12700H remains faster.
That’s competitive pricing. The MacBook Pro starts at $1,299 (opens in new tab), but it’s $1,499 if you want 16 GB of memory and that change lifts the Apple rig above the 7i. Pricier than the Slim 7i is the Alienware x14 laptop, which comes in at $1,499.99 (opens in new tab) for a Core i5 model and $1,599.99 (opens in new tab) for an i7-12700H. The Microsoft Surface Laptop 4 is usually cheaper at around $699.99 (opens in new tab), but it’s a poorer laptop.
The Yoga offers good value in the U.K., too. For a Core i5-12500H laptop the price starts at £1,329.99 (opens in new tab), and the i7-12700H version costs £1,470 (opens in new tab). The MacBook Pro 13 costs at least £1,349 (opens in new tab), and an extra £200 on top of that if you deploy 16 GB of memory – and even with a Core i5 CPU, the Alienware x14 starts at £1,298.99 (opens in new tab).
Lenovo Slim 7i Pro X review: User reviews
At the time of writing, the Lenovo Slim 7i Pro X has a 4.5 star rating on the official Lenovo website (opens in new tab) from 51 total reviews – with 33 of them being 5 stars. Overall, customers agreed that it was a good-looking machine, easy to carry, and were pleased with the laptop’s performance. It was fast and capable at tackling everyday tasks, making it ideal for both school and work.
Despite high praise for its stylish appearance, many did not like the clear markings of the letters on the keyboard as this made them a bit difficult to read. Others also mentioned that during heavy loads the laptop can get a bit hot at the back.
Should you buy the Lenovo Slim 7i Pro X?
There’s no doubt that the Lenovo Slim 7i Pro X offers good value. It also impresses beyond the shopping cart: its processors are extremely fast, the keyboard is fantastic, and the display offers a high-quality, versatile specification.
For coding, development, light photo-editing, and other everyday work tasks the Slim 7i is a powerful, compact, and versatile option with competitive pricing. It is only the lackluster battery life that prevents it from earning a wholehearted recommendation.
If the Lenovo Slim 7i Pro X isn’t for you?
If you would like to guarantee all-day battery life from your programming portable, the Apple MacBook Pro 13 (opens in new tab) is the best alternative – and its M2 processor isn’t far behind the Core i7-12700H when it comes to computing power.
For gaming pace alongside coding power, the Alienware x14 should be at the top of your list. Not only will it be able to handle all your gaming needs, but you’ll find a great keyboard and impressive selection of ports here too.
Microsoft’s Surface Laptop 4 might not have the power of its rivals, but it still has the ability to tackle everyday coding tasks comfortably. Plus, it’s great for those on a budget as it’s much cheaper than the three other notebooks we’ve mentioned here, although its lack of ports can be limiting.
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