Laptop Duel -- Can't Decide between Yoga 2 Pro / Lenovo Y40

NeoMatriX724

Limp Gawd
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Jul 26, 2007
Messages
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So I have access to some nice extended Cyber Monday deals and have been looking to pick up a new laptop. I'm fairly torn since I was set on a Yoga 2 Pro (which I can get for about $1100 with tax and shipping included. The Yoga has some nicer features like the hinge, the Screen and general usability and lightness.

My primary use case is taking this to events for coverage. I have to carry this on my back along with camera gear. The horsepower of the Y40 would be nice due to video and photo editing on site, but the screen and weight of the Yoga 2 Pro are very nice as well.

Being able to game on the Y40 is a bonus since the video card on the Yoga 2 Pro is not that great. Price is a definite plus, but I'm pretty torn.

Yoga 2 Pro:
i5 4210U (1.7ghz)
8Gb Ram
Intel HD 4400
3200x1800 13.3' Display
256gb SSD
9 Hr rated battery life.

However, I can pick up a Y40 for about 650 with tax and shipping with the below specs:

Y40:
i7 4500U (2ghz)
8Gb Ram
Radeon R9 M270 2gb
1080p 14' Display
512gb SSD
5 Hr rated battery life.
 

FrEaKy

[H] Movie and TV Show Review Guy
Joined
Jan 31, 2003
Messages
13,938
If its for total mobility and being able to use it for events, go with the Yoga 2, your gonna be able to carry it easier than carrying the full laptop AND 4 more hours of battery life.

But if your okay with just having the laptop out and pulling it out when you need it only, at least you have the video to play a game or two, and twice the storage.
 

NeoMatriX724

Limp Gawd
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Jul 26, 2007
Messages
269
It's the eternal question of power vs portability. The events are particularly grueling since I usually have to be walking around throughout the 10 hour convention day for 2 to 4 days. On top of that anything I don't do at the convention, I have to do when I get home.

Having enough horsepower to run Lightroom, Photoshop and Premiere would make it a lot easier to get work done while at the event. Most Press Room's have power so the battery isn't a huge deal...since the laptop won't be on for the full 10 hours unless there's a lot of transit time to or from the event such as flights.

Portability / Tablet form factor helps since if the thing weighs a lot less, it's less on my back since I usually end up carrying a DSLR or 2, 1 or 2 ADDITIONAL lenses + Strobes. In cases of video, this may also add a Tripod, Monopod, Steadycam and possible Audio gear. Tablet + Touch form helps since I can do minor work in Lightroom while just walking around such as scrapping, rating, categorizing and doing initial adjustments for Teaser / Preview shots. AKA a lot of the grunt work gets done during otherwise unused downtime and while everything is fresh.

Downside is price, and the possibility of not having the horsepower to do what I need. On the night I stay in to do work instead of an afterparty...I can't really crack open a game to break up the evening.

So the Y40 meets the power requirement at the expense of inconvenience. The Yoga 2 Pro meets the during event function but may force me to offload activities to when I get home to my desktop.
 

mi7chy

2[H]4U
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May 22, 2013
Messages
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A faster laptop allows you to complete the same work in less time so you can't directly compare 5 hr to 10 hr battery but need to look at it as work done per hour. Not much difference in weight between >3# and <5# when factoring in the weight of all your gear. Can't imagine not finding an available outlet within 5 hours. I'd go for the Y40 and if needed an extra battery and rolling luggage for less money than the other option.
 
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limitedaccess

Supreme [H]ardness
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May 10, 2010
Messages
7,594
How important is the screen quality for you with your editing work? The y40 is a TN screen that is rather poor to say the least. While the Yoga 2 Pro suffers from color accuracy issues despite being IPS.

The y40 is still a dual core ULV CPU though so the performance difference may not be what you think it would be. Great price for a 512gb ssd version though.

Not sure about how well it'd handle photo editing and premiere (due to the throttling under extended load) but otherwise the SP3 has a much better display and is even more portable than the Yoga 2 Pro. Also has pen support. Memory might be an issue unless you wanted to spend a lot more however.
 

gungravevn

n00b
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Nov 15, 2014
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43
Yoga2 Pro has my vote. You want something light, portable with long battery life for long trip. And it is at great price too.
 

NeoMatriX724

Limp Gawd
Joined
Jul 26, 2007
Messages
269
Screen is pretty important but not a deal breaker. If I can't do a full blown photo workflow i can at least get MOST of the work done on the laptop and always color correct on my IPS / Calibrated monitor at home.

Price is the main concern. I just bought a 5D Mark III and strobes + 5TB redundant storage so I'm not rolling in a lot to buy a fully loaded laptop. Effectively is the ~500 price difference in the Yoga worth it.
 

limitedaccess

Supreme [H]ardness
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Well from what you've provided the only significant difference really is portability.

So is the portability worth the extra $500 to you? I'm not sure if a third party can really properly answer that.

Yoga 2 Pro - 1.3kg + 0.3kg (PSU)
Y40 - 2.03kg + 0.43kg (PSU)

So about 1.6lbs difference or 1.9lbs difference including the power adapters.

Without being completely familiar with your work load I can't definitively say whether or not the y40 extra "performance" would actually be functionally meaningful but I'm not seeing how it would. Would you video editing in Premiere for example be able to significantly leverage the GPU somehow? Where, and how, would the y40 be showing performance advantage and/or that the Yoga 2 would not be usable?

Unless you need the extra storage too of course. I'll admit a 512ssd y40 is a rather good deal for that price, considering the cost of a 512SSD from most laptops by itself would be a $300+ dollar upgrade even from 256gb.
 

NeoMatriX724

Limp Gawd
Joined
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Messages
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Ah i don't think the the HD in the Y40 is an SSD, that'd be an obscenely good deal.

"Without being completely familiar with your work load I can't definitively say whether or not the y40 extra "performance" would actually be functionally meaningful but I'm not seeing how it would. Would you video editing in Premiere for example be able to significantly leverage the GPU somehow? Where, and how, would the y40 be showing performance advantage and/or that the Yoga 2 would not be usable?"

This is actually the main question i'm hoping to get an answer for. I haven't had to use a laptop in a while so my hands on understanding of mobile processor power is really weak. Mostly just going by benchmarks. The Yoga 2 would be more usable while moving but the Y40 would give me more of a "base" when I'm traveling.

I had a Core 2 Duo HP which I gave to my parents 2 years ago due to not needing a laptop, It was 2ish years old by that point.

At these events there were usually others on my team using Macbooks or other gear to do editing while I'd do the larger editing at home on my desktop...which is still relatively powerful. We re-orged how we go to events, and I figure I want more hands on experience instead of just managing all the time (Lead by example), So I want to transition my workflow to occur on-site. The machine doesn't need to blow through stuff, it just needs to be good enough to run through photos without really stuttering, handle lightroom processing, and be able to handle importing video and editing/rendering it for 2 to 10 minute videos at 1080p.

External storage is taken care of.

My inexperience with laptops makes it hard for me to gauge and understand what I really need in terms of performance. Hopefully that makes sense.
 

limitedaccess

Supreme [H]ardness
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Messages
7,594
No need to worry about any laptop specifics here.

The CPU in both is relatively straight forward to compare, they are both 2 core 4 thread (Hyper-threading) the only difference is clock speed and the i7 has slightly larger l2 cache (don't really worry about it). So the performance difference is roughly just the clock speed difference, 1.7base/2.7turbo for the i5 (yoga 2) and 1.8base/3turbo for the i7 (y40). So chances are if the i5 is too slow, so will the i7. You'll basically save maybe 10%-15% (maybe) of time whenever you're waiting for the computer. Performance is essentially the same as desktop variants clock for clock if you want an approximate gauge.

Compared to the Macbooks you see depending on the configuration they can come with 4c/8t full mobile CPUs which can make a huge difference depending on the threading of the workload.

What CPU do you have at home? You could try simply emulating the performance of these two devices on your desktop and see how it feels.

The Yoga 2 Pro actually has an advantage going for it with the SSD (since in your OP you stated the y40 had one but apparently it doesn't). It will feel faster (and will be faster in certain aspects more significantly) due to the SSD. Laptop 5900rpm HDDs are slow even compared to typical desktop HDDs.

The main advantage of the Y40 is the m270 GPU but I'm not familiar enough to comment on whether or not it's a tangible advantage for you aside from gaming. Looking on Adobe's website briefly however it isn't actually supported for OpenCL acceleration (while the the lower m260 is).

Another thing to keep in mind is the version of your Adobe software and DPI. Adobe did not start supporting high DPI displays in Windows until somewhat recently (eg. CC) so you may get ultra small UI.

One way you can evaluate the situation is to maybe try to estimate how much time you'd actually gain with the Yoga 2 (being able to do more work on site). Try to translate that to over the lifetime of the device (or this application) and see if saving that many hours is worth the money to you.
 

jbdarkblue

Weaksauce
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Dec 3, 2010
Messages
124
I just ordered that exact config on the Yoga 2 pro. Cost just under $1000 after taxes and the free shipping. I just got a new job as a network engineer, and since I am pretty green, I will be going out on every job there is so I can get the training. I wanted a laptop that was mobile since I will be taking it everywhere I go.

The past couple of days I have been looking into ultra-books/2 in 1's. Reading reviews online for all the various device. It was difficult trying to narrow it down to a single device to buy. Hopefully you choose the one that best fits your needs.
 

legcramp

[H]F Junkie
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Aug 16, 2004
Messages
12,287
jbdarkblue, where did you get the yoga 2 pro for that price?

Thanks
 

buttons

2[H]4U
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2,126
for what its worth, i was going to buy a Y40 for $629 but then went for the Y50 instead and i regret it. Id rather have the Y40 and saved $350.
 

NeoMatriX724

Limp Gawd
Joined
Jul 26, 2007
Messages
269
I held off for now and dumped the money into my "future toy purchases fund". I may just wait for Skylake releases next year and try my luck. Alternatively if any crazy sales come up when they try to de-stock these laptops, may pick one up then =).

Not too worried, between tech, photography, and model building there's plenty to spend the money on when the time comes.

Thanks for the advice, was definitely helpful.
 

NeoMatriX724

Limp Gawd
Joined
Jul 26, 2007
Messages
269
Sorry for bringing this back from the Dead. I ended up not going with the 2 Pro or the Y40. Waiting a bit for what was coming out, and finally having the scratch to commit to a laptop, I've narrowed it down to the new XPS13 (QHD), or possibly the Yoga 3 Pro (due to the recent processor refresh).

Any weigh in is appreciated, I'll likely pull the trigger on the XPS13, unless someone can recommend something better in the $1400 (tax + shipping included range) which meets the initial reqs.

Reason for the change of heart is that I have a lot more events recently added to my docket, as well as a possible long term business trip i'll need to take in a few months. This sort of front loads the need for a good laptop.
 

smelly

Weaksauce
Joined
Aug 1, 2008
Messages
103
Don't know how anyone can recommend the yoga 2 pro with its extremely awful wifi. Had a friend pick one up and it rarely connects to wifi and when it does its incredibly slow. Its a shame that he spend $1000 on a laptop and then has to go open it up to replace the wifi card for something not completely garbage.

I recommended the new XPS 13 but he liked the idea of the yoga 2 pro.
 
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