- Editor's Rating
- Good battery life
- Durable design
- High quality keyboard
- Built-in stylus
- Middling performance
- Glossy reflective display
The Lenovo ThinkPad Yoga 460 is a well rounded device with a useful stylus, durable 360-degree design, and excellent battery life, but the middling performance and reflective display keep it from being a market leader.
Lenovo’s Yoga line has always been about flexibility, but the ThinkPad Yoga 460 may be their most adaptable laptop to date. Armed with a 360-degree display hinge and digitizer pen, the business-class laptop comfortably functions as both a laptop and tablet and everything in between. The long lasting battery also ensures that users can continue to be productive even when out of range of power outlet.
The Lenovo ThinkPad Yoga 460 is an incredibly well rounded package, but the nearly one thousand dollar ($997 at the time of the review) price tag feels a bit steep. Armed with a 2.3GHz Intel Core i5-6200U CPU and Intel HD Graphics 520 the Yoga 460 offers suitable performance, but it doesn’t quite match up against other premium business laptops.
Is this flexible business a laptop a good fit for you? Read the full Lenovo ThinkPad Yoga 460 review to find out.
Build and Design
The Lenovo ThinkPad Yoga 460 sports a fresh new silver coat of paint (though you can still opt for the traditional ThinkPad black if you prefer). Besides the color swap, the ThinkPad Yoga 460 shares many of the familiar design elements of the ThinkPad family. The carbon fiber chassis is cool to the touch, especially the display lid. The laptops corners are rounded at the edges, creating a sleek profile. Lenovo lettering is engraved along the bottom left of the display lid and silver ThinkPad lettering sits at the top right, complete with the signature illuminated dot of the “i”. The same ThinkPad lettering sits along the bottom right hand-side of the the laptop’s deck. Small rubber pads sit along the top and bottom edges of the deck along with the front edge of the laptop’s chassis. These pads are designed to help give the laptop extra grip while in it’s various tent, stand, and tablet modes.
Measuring 13.3 x 9.3 x 0.7-inches and weighing 4.2 pounds the Lenovo ThinkPad Yoga 460 certainly won’t strain your back, but it doesn’t offer the same level of portability found from other high-end business laptops. Lenovo’s own ThinkPad X1 Yoga is considerably thinner and lighter at 0.66-inches and 2.8 pounds respectively. The HP Specter x360 15t matches the Yoga 460’s 4.2 pound weight, while offering a larger 15-inch display.
While the Yoga 460 may not be the most portable laptop, it is well built. The 360-degree display hinge offers easy travel and allows the 460 to switch between four modes: Laptop (standard clamshell form), Tablet (keyboard folded all the way back behind the display), Tent (the display and keyboard are placed upside down in the shape of a V), and Stand (the keyboard is folded upside down propping the display up in front). Switching between these modes is quick and intuitive and in Tablet mode the keys flatten and lock so you don’t accidentally misclick while holding the device. Windows 10 also allows for seamless travel between Laptop and Tablet UIs, though you can retain the standard Laptop UI in Tablet mode if you wish.
The Yoga 460 is also incredibly durable. The Lenovo ThinkPad Yoga 460 has been MIL-STD 810G tested to withstand vibration, humidity, shocks, and extreme temperatures making it ideal for the road warrior who needs a device capable handling the wears and tears of the road. Of course Lenovo’s standard ThinkPad spill resistant keyboard also makes a return as well.
Ports and Features
The Lenovo ThinkPad Yoga 460 features excellent connectivity with a wide selection of ports. The left side of the device houses a power connector, a OneLInk+ dock connector, a USB 3.0 port, a headphone/microphone audio jack, and a SD card slot. The right side of the device features a security lock slot, an HDMI connector, a Mini DisplayPort, and two more USB 3.0 ports. Along the ride side of the device are also independent volume controls and a power button for easy access while using the Yoga 460 in various modes.
One element that really helps the ThinkPad Yoga 460 stand out is its ThinkPad Pen Pro stylus.The 5-inch pen fits comfortably in the bottom left front end of the chassis, which doubles as a charger. Some people may prefer battery powered digital pens, but this charger works incredibly fast, 10 seconds in the charging slot will power pen for 3 full hours.
The stylus is a bit thinner than your standard pen or pencil, which can make it feel a bit awkward to wield at first. However, after using the digital pen for a few minutes it become comfortable enough, but NBR still would have preferred something a bit thicker with a little more weight to it. That said, the Pen Pro works wonderfully, providing strong palm rejection and 2,048 levels of pressure sensitivity.
A third of the way up the barrel are two customizable buttons. The buttons can be programmed to perform a function or launch specific applications. The Yoga 460 also comes preloaded with Lenovo’s WRITEit app, which provides you with an overlay allowing you to mark up anything that’s on your screen. This application is perfect for preparing for meetings or researching an upcoming paper.
Screen and Speakers
The Lenovo ThinkPad Yoga 460 houses a 14.1-inch FHD (1920 x 1080) resolution IPS glossy touch display. If you’re looking for a higher resolution panel Lenovo also WQHD (2560 x 1440) resolution display option for an additional $100. At 241 nits the Yoga 460 offers acceptable brightness. Images appeared sharp and detailed, but colors were a bit uneven and flat. While watching a trailer for the game Overwatch brighter yellows and blues contrasted nicely, but the 460 struggled to fully capture the dark blacks and deep reds of Reaper, one of the game’s playable characters.
The glossy panel is also incredibly reflective. Any contact with direct light causes the display to produce a glossy sheen. Colors become washed and background images reflect onto the screen. This issue is particularly noticeable when using the laptop in tablet mode with the screen pointed towards the ceiling (if you have overhanging lighting in the room). The glossy surface also severely limits visibility, as images hold up only around 50 to 60 degrees before colors begin to become faded. The Yoga 460’s screen is fine for one or two people, but it will struggle to accommodate much more than that.
On the other-hand the bottom mounted speakers are perfect for presentations, offering a surprising level of audio capable of filling a modest-sized room. NBR was pleased by the laptop’s ability to accurately capture the classical piece Histoire du Tango – Nightclub 1960 by Duo Sonidos. However, when watching the trailer for Overwatch the lack of bass left the experience feeling a bit hollow. The ThinkPad Yoga 460 is ideal for meeting with clear consistent audio, but it may not be the best if you’re looking for something to help accentuate the special effects of your favorite action movie.
Keyboard and Touchpad
The Lenovo ThinkPad Yoga offers the classic spill resistant Island-style backlit keyboard that has become synonymous with the ThinkPad line. The black glossy plastic keys feel slick to to the touch. They are rounded at the corners and curve inwards, making them easy to cup with your fingers. The Yoga 460 offers a solid 1.7 millimeter key travel, one of the boons of it’s slightly thicker profile. Response time is also snappy with keys quickly snapping back into place after being struck. As with most Lenovo ThinkPads, you can rest assured that you’ll be able to type quickly and accurately with absolute comfort.
Again like most ThinkPad devices the Yoga 460 features a bright red Trackpoint pointing stick just above the B key. Much like with the Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon the Trackpoint pointing stick offers smooth consistent controls. The buttons located along the top of the touchpad, have deep responsive action making them comfortable to use with both your thumb or fingers.
The moderately sized touchpad also proves to be a great way to control the Yoga 460. The smooth pad allows for easy resistant free travel, providing and excellent level of control and sensitivity. Armed with Synaptic drivers, the Yoga 460’s touchpad reacted quickly without fault to finger gestures, clicks, and swipes.
The one area where the Lenovo ThinkPad Yoga 460 lags behind its contemporaries is performance. Armed with a sixth generation Intel Core i5-6200U 2.3GHz CPU, with 8GB of DDR3, Intel HD Graphics 520 integrated graphics and a 192GB SSD, the Yoga 460 isn’t a slouch, but it also doesn’t offer the lighting fast performance that you’d expect from a thousand dollar computer.
The strong GeekBench 3 and consistent PCMark 8 benchmark scores showcase that the laptop is more than capable of handling most productivity tasks with relative ease. The Yoga 460 is also capable of juggling multiple tasks. NBR was able to run 10 Google Chrome tabs, two HD video streams and stream music on Spotify without any noticeable drop in performance.
If you’re looking for stronger performance, the Yoga 460 does provide a number of upgrade options including up to a sixth generation Intel Core i7-6600U CPU, 16GB of DDR3 and a larger 256GB SSD. All of these upgrades do quickly add up though, the fully deck out version of the Lenovo ThinkPad Yoga 460 is currently listed for $1,615. Personally NBR wouldn’t recommend the beefed up version. Lenovo has hit the sweet spot of affordability and performance with the unit that they sent us. If you’re looking for a stronger laptop, you’ll likely be better off looking at another device because the lack of a PCIe SSD option means that no matter how powerful the processor, there is still going to be a noticeable bottleneck with the SATA SSD. Additionally the weak integrated graphics will continue to hold the device back, from being an all around powerhouse.
The weakest aspect of the Yoga 460 is its graphics performance. The integrated Intel Graphics 520 GPU isn’t all that powerful as evident by the middling 3DMark 11 score. The laptop is capable of basic tasks like video editing and watching videos, but it will struggle to do much else.
I know we’re being a bit harsh here on the Yoga 460. The truth is, the performance should be way more than enough for day to day tasks or your standard fare of productivity apps. But, if you’re looking for top of the line performance, then the Yoga 460 just won’t match up against other market leaders.
The Lenovo ThinkPad Yoga 460 review unit that NBR tested had the following specifications:
- Windows 10 Pro (64-bit)
- 14.1-inch FHD (1920 x 1080) resolution IPS display
- Intel Core i5-6200U 2.3GHz GPU
- Intel HD Graphics 520
- 8GB DDR3
- 192GB SSD
- Dimensions: 13.3 x 9.3 x 0.7 -inches
- Weight: 4.2 pounds
- Price: $997
GeekBench 3 processor comparison results (higher score means better performance):
PCMark8 Home (Accelerated) measures overall system performance in Windows for general activities from web browsing and video streaming to typing documents and playing games (higher scores mean better performance):
PCMark8 Work (Accelerated) measures overall system performance in Windows for work-related productivity tasks (higher scores mean better performance):
3DMark 11 is a benchmark that measures overall graphics card performance for gaming (higher scores mean better performance):
CrystalDiskMark storage drive performance tests:
To test battery life of our Lenovo ThinkPad Yoga 460 review unit, we used Futuremark’s PowerMark benchmark in balanced mode. The test consists of a combination of automated web browsing, word processing, gaming and video playback workloads. The test is far more strenuous than typical web browsing alone, measuring the machine under a litany of scenarios to better simulate high-stress usage. With the test being far more demanding the scores are understandably lower than what you’ll experience just checking Facebook or watching Netflix.
Powermark battery life benchmark test results listed in minutes (higher scores indicate longer battery life):
In our tests the Lenovo ThinkPad Yoga 460 ran for 5 hours and 21 minutes before shutting down. Lasting nearly five and half hours the Yoga 460 boasts strong battery life. Considering that our tests are more strenuous than general use, the Yoga 460 can last upwards of 8 hours on a single charge.
Few laptops can match the utility of the Lenovo ThinkPad Yoga 460. With a solid stylus, the quality 360-degree display hinge and a durable build, the Yoga 460 is the jack knife of business laptops. Add in the useful software and tactical keyboard and you have an excellent 2-in-1 that can adapt to nearly any situation.
However, if you’re willing to spend a bit more you could opt for the Lenovo’s X1 Carbon or Apple MacBook Pro. Both offer more powerful specifications with stronger graphical performance and are considerably lighter.
Still the Lenovo ThinkPad Yoga 460 is an excellent choice in it’s own right, especially if you don’t need top of the line performance.
- Good battery life
- Durable design
- High quality keyboard
- Built-in stylus
- Middling performance
- Glossy reflective display