Lenovo Yoga C930's Rotating Speaker Is Pretty Slick

Image: Tegan Jones/Gizmodo Australia

I've never been a fan of 2-in-1 laptops. I'm a simple girl who likes her keyboard at the front at all times.

But even I have to admit that Lenovo's Yoga series has always been sleek, and the watchband hinge quite sexy.

And this year the brand is taking it to the next level by installing a rotating Dolby Atmos 3D speaker into it.

I had to try it.

This post was originally published on September 4.

But before we go any further, here are the key specs:

  • 8th-Gen Intel Core i7-8550U or 8th-Gen Intel Core i5-8250U processor
  • Windows 10 Home OS
  • 13.9-inch UHD (3840 x 2160) IPS touchscreen with Dolby Vision HDR or 13.9-inch FHD (1920 x 1080) IPS touchscreen with Dolby Vision display
  • 8GB/12GB/16GB DDR4 memory
  • 256GB/512GB/1TB/2TB SSD storage
  • Estimated 14.5 hours FHD/9 hours UHD battery
  • 1 x USB 3.1, 2 x USB-C, headphone jack ports
  • Fingerprint reader and Windows Hello webcam security
  • 12.68 x 8.94 x 0.57 inches, 1.38kg
Image: Tegan Jones/Gizmodo Australia

The first thing I thought when I saw the C930 is that the speaker seems a lot like a soundbar you'd hook up to your TV.

Its designed so that a user always has the sound facing and surrounding them regardless of whether they have the device in laptop, tablet or tent mode.

In the few minutes I spent with it in an environment somewhat isolated from IFA's showroom floor, it worked a treat.

Every mode saw the sound coming directly at me in a clear and crisp fashion. It also lived up to the '3D' aspect of the name — it was like experiencing a mini version of surround sound.

While this function won't be as useful when you have headphones plugged in, it creates a unique and enjoyable experience when the speaker is in action.

The other major design change for the new Yoga is the addition of a cavity for the stylus, which is called a 'Garage'.

The Garage is located on the back left corner of the device and not only stores the stylus, but also charges it.

This is a great idea in practice, but the stylus was more difficult to get out of the Garage than it should be.

You have to push it quite far in to get it to pop out, and even then it can be a bit fiddly to grab. It definitely isn't designed for anyone with fingernails in mind.

As someone who isn't inclined to use stylus' that much, I would be inspired to just leave it in the Garage to avoid the annoyance if this was my daily driver. And that's a shame, because the stylus has some cool functionality beyond the usual note taking.

For example — navigation.

You can use the stylus with Google Maps to draw a straight line between locations and the best route will be calculated.

I was also able to get a quick side-by-side comparison with the C930's Dolby Vision HDR and a previous generation machine.

While I would prefer to test it in a less controlled environment, the difference was obvious. It looked great.

Another neat little inclusion is a privacy shutter for the webcam, which is good for anyone who is concerned about being spied on, or simply leaving it on.

Also, unlike my Dell XPS 13, the camera is above the screen, so nobody is going to be getting a Blair Witch Project shot up your nose.

Lastly, I had to take the keyboard for a quick drive.

I was initially apprehensive about how shallow the keys looked, but I actually really enjoyed how firm they felt beneath my fingers. No sponginess at all.

As someone who has a bad habit of smashing my keyboard way too hard, the C930 feels like it can take it.

Comparatively, the keys on my aforementioned Dell are quite deep, and I think that the Yoga are far less likely to get pushed in — there's really nowhere for them to go.

Unsurprisingly, a machine this fancy is going to cost some serious cash. In fact, it's going to start at $2,599 when it drops in Australia . We don't know exactly when that will be yet, but as a hopeful indicator — the U.S. are getting it in October.

This is going to be outside the budget of a lot of people. On the other hand, if you can afford it and you're looking for something that's going to be future proofed for the next few years, it may be perfect for you.

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