Software and Performance

The Lenovo Yoga 13 ships with Windows 8 64-bit, making it the first system we have tested to ship with Microsoft’s latest OS.

I’ll stop well short of doing a full-on review of Windows 8 but just note that if you are totally new to the OS, it will certainly take some time to get used to. I’ve had a little experience with Windows 8 beforehand but even still, it took a bit to get the hang of things initially. After a couple of weeks, however, I felt pretty well versed and even found that there were some things I preferred over the tried and true Windows 7 I’ve been using for years.

One of those things is how quickly the operating system loads from a cold boot. I clocked a complete boot at just 11 seconds; faster than any other system I have tested to date by a significant margin. Windows 8 and the solid state drive can share the credit for this feat.

Upon booting into Windows 8 for the first time, I navigated to the add / remove programs menu and surprisingly found only half a dozen or so programs that I would remove from the get-go. This is refreshing as the last several notebooks I have reviewed shipped with at least a dozen or more bloatware apps.

Given this new platform, we were forced to modify our benchmarking procedures slightly. PCMark Vantage refused to give an overall score now matter how hard I tried. We are also doing away with our “real-world” web-browsing battery test in favor of the much more standardized Powermark application. All of our other testing procedures have been carried over from Windows 7.

Benchmarks Results

Synthetic Tests Yoga 13 Aspire S5 TimelineU M5 MacBook Air
3DMark 06
3DMark Score 4393 3DMarks 5263 3DMarks 11958 3DMarks 5785 3DMarks
PCMark Vantage
PCMark Suite N/A 13643 PCMarks 6743 PCMarks N/A

Application Tests Yoga 13 Aspire S5 TimelineU M5 MacBook Air
iTunes Encoding Test 1 min 25 sec 1 min 15 sec 1 min 19 sec 51 sec
File Transfer Test
Small files 24 sec 10 sec 1 min 11 sec 22 sec
Large file 22 sec 10 sec 1 min 19 sec 22 sec

The iTunes encoding tests consist of converting 14 MP3s (119MB) to 128Kbps ACC files and measuring the operation's duration in seconds. For file transfers, we measure how long it takes to copy two sets of files from one location to another on the same hard drive. On the small files test we transfer 557 MP3s, totaling 2.56GB. For the large file, these same MP3s were zipped into a single file measuring 2.52GB.

Gaming Performance Yoga 13 Aspire S5 TimelineU M5 MacBook Air
Far Cry 2
1024x768, Medium Quality 23.5 fps 35.2 fps 69.0 fps 37.3 fps
Native res, High Quality 15.3 fps 21.9 fps 55.5 fps 19.3 fps
StarCraft 2
1024x768, Medium Quality 16.9 fps 21.8 fps 39.7 fps 25.1 fps
Native res, High Quality 10.8 fps 15.2 fps 29.9 fps 16.1 fps

  • 13.3" 1600x900 IPS LED multi-touch display
  • Intel Core i5-3317U (1.7 - 2.6GHz)
  • Intel HD Graphics 4000
  • 4GB of DDR3 RAM
  • 128GB SSD
  • Windows 8 64-bit
  • 13.3" 1366x768 LED-backlit display
  • Intel Core i5-3317U (1.7GHz - 2.6GHz)
  • 4GB DDR3 RAM
  • Intel HD 4000 Graphics
  • 2 x 128GB SSD RAID0
  • Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit
  • 15.6" 1366x768 LED-backlit display
  • Intel Core i5-3317U (1.7GHz - 2.6GHz)
  • 6GB DDR3 RAM
  • Intel HD 4000 Graphics + GeForce GT 640M LE 1GB
  • 20GB SSD + 500GB 5400RPM HDD
  • Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit
  • 13.3" 1440x900 LED-backlit display
  • Intel Core i5-3427U (1.8GHz - 2.8GHz)
  • 4GB DDR3 RAM
  • Intel HD 4000 Graphics
  • 128GB SSD
  • Mac OS X, Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit