Comparing a $1,000 laptop to the MacBook Pro. Which is better?
Rounding out my 3-part series in transitioning back to a Windows device, after 2.5 years with a MacBook Pro- I finish with a head-to-head comparison of the two physical devices.
The challenger: 2022 Lanovo Yoga S7i Pro Evo 14 (Intel 11 Gen i5, 8GB RAM, 256GB SSD)
Purchase price: $1,049
The Defender: 2020 Apple MacBook Pro (Intel 11 Gen i7, 16GB RAM, 256GB SSD)
Purchase price: $3,149
When it comes to the actual feel of the laptop itself, It’s a tie between the Lanovo Yoga and the MacBook. Both come in a compact chassis, roughly the same size and thickness (although the Yoga hinge sticks out a little bit more). But their form factor is so similar i.e., small and compact, that I’m going to say the first round is a tie!
This round goes to the MacBook, Apple just use a more premium material for its products, so they feel slightly better under your fingertips. But by no means am I saying that the Yoga feels cheap, the device is still encased in metal (not plastic), but it’s just a bit rougher and scratchier to the touch.
Hands down this goes to the MacBook, who can beat the Apple design language, it’s clean and iconic. When the Lanovo doesn’t really have a recognizable design, it doesn’t even have a logo! The design reminds me of a HP or a Dell laptop, so in short it looks like any 14-inch laptop which runs Windows OS.
Although the Yoga runs on Intel i5 and 8GB RAM, while the MacBook is one step higher on the Intel spec ladder and has double the amount of RAM, I’d say the Yoga with my use of it has enough grunt to meet my needs. To date I haven’t experienced any downsides of having less power, so for this reason I’m giving the power round to Yoga! Just because if a device can complete the same task with half the power, then it should be commended for that!
I’m all about a perfect keyboard layout, as I’m a 100% touch-typist (due to my blindness), so before purchasing a laptop I spend considerable amounts of time feeling up a keyboard in-store. So, Yoga wins handsomely in this round over the MacBook. Not having the Touch bar is in its favor as hitting the function keys is simple again. The Yoga keys are less springy, so requires less effort to type. Both touchpads were too sensitive but easily deactivated. But overall Yoga takes the win here!
Now on a roll, Yoga takes a third win! The fact that the screen is 2 years more advanced, plays into this win. However, it’s the fact that it’s also a touch screen, which makes this round a unanimous win to Yoga! The Yoga screen can also bend back until it’s lying flat against your desk, which enables some huddle work between friends, family and colleagues.
The sound quality goes to MacBook, I’ve always marveled at how 3D MacBook made things sound, and how easy it was to turn up and down the volume, with the iconic clicks as audible feedback to how loud you’ve adjusted your device to. While the Yoga has its speakers under the laptop towards the edges nearest to you. This is fine when the laptop sits on a hard surface, but when it’s on your lap, your clothing muffles most of the sound. So, for these reasons, MacBook easily takes this round!
Although both devices have an average battery life, but Yoga has a much shorter lifespan. On average, I’m only getting 3 and a bit hours out of a fully charged device. When the MacBook used to give me around 4 to 5 hours. So, both devices leave you wanting, but Yoga is the more disappointing of the two.
Yoga runs less hot than the MacBook. Oddly the Mac used to run very hot, give it 5 minutes and it would be quite hot to the touch, while the Yoga can run for several hours and still feel only slightly warm to the touch. But admittedly the Yoga is still a new device, and the battery is still in good working order. But for now, the Yoga wins for being the cooler device!
Being a noisy device can be both good and bad in my circumstance, as sometimes when the computer is frozen and is no longer speaking to me, having a device which gives off some fan noise is good (or otherwise I can’t tell if the device is even on). But Yoga is the noisier device, lean in and you’ll easily hear the fan noise. While the MacBook was always whisper quiet. So, to the conventional measure of noise, the MacBook wins this round.
Although both devices aren’t heavy at all, but the MacBook is the heavier of the two, as the MacBook uses a more solid metal for its laptop shell, and the Yoga uses a lighter weight metal, the Yoga feels almost weightless in the hands. So, Yoga claws back a win here.
And if we were going to hypothetically sit on our closed laptop, to simulate an ‘O crap’ moment when you forgot that you had the device on the couch. I would be more confident that the MacBook survives your butt imprint, due to its more solid metal outer body. While due to Yoga’s lighter metal shell, and already some slight flexing when you press on it a little harder, thus I’m more nervous about the health of the Yoga if I accidently sat on it. So, MacBook takes the final round.
So, after 12 rounds of head-to-head competition between the challenger Lanovo Yoga, and the defender Apple MacBook Pro……. The Super Light Weight winner is still the MacBook Pro! Winning 18 to Yoga’s 17. A little surprising, as before going through this process my user experience was telling me that I preferred the Lanovo Yoga. But going through each category and scoring things based on its merits, it seems that the MacBook is the more complete package. However, at 3 times the cost, you’d expect it to have an advantage over the Yoga? But for a device at a little over $1,000, the Lanovo Yoga has stood its ground and has represented itself considerably well. And I’m still happy with my decision to make it my new one-and-only.