[Review] Lenovo Yoga Tablet 8 is Best Tablet for Watching Movies

Lenovo Yoga Tablet 8 banner

If you have a tablet, then you probably buy a tablet stand too. Do you wish your tablet has a stand so that you do not need to bring tablet stand every time you go out?

Lenovo Yoga Tablet 8 is the first Android tablet with kickstand to enable multiple usage modes: Hold, Tilt, and Stand. Is the unique design brings good user experience? How is the tablet’s performance and battery life?

Read my Lenovo Yoga Tablet 8 review here for details.

Design

LENOVO Yoga Tablet 8 Tilt mode with kickstand

LENOVO Yoga Tablet 8 Tilt mode with kickstand

My first impression about Yoga tablet 8 is good. The silver color metal body with battery cylinder on the side reminds me the Apple Magic Trackpad I am using.

Hold the tablet horizontally, below the display you see a pair of front-facing stereo speakers. The laser-etched back housing make the tablet comfortable to hold, not slippery. It prevents smudges and oily fingerprints.

The kickstand is integrated with battery cylinder. You flip it over to open kickstand. The hinge is stable to hold your tablet still. Covered by kickstand are the SIM slot and microSD card slot.

At one side of the kickstand is the 5MP rear facing camera and power button is located at the edge near the camera. micro USB port is next to the power button.

LENOVO Yoga Tablet 8 back camera and power button

LENOVO Yoga Tablet 8 back camera and power button

The power button is big and you need to press it quite deep (1cm?) to activate its function (sleep, wake, power on/off).

The opposite side of the power button is the 3.5mm headset jack, and above that is the volume rocker and microphone.

Kickstand

LENOVO Yoga Tablet 8 Stand mode side view

LENOVO Yoga Tablet 8 Stand mode side view

The kickstand maximum angle about 70 degree. It is quite straight for a small 8″ tablet which you will using in close distance.

Though Lenovo product tour video demo the kickstand hinge with adjustable angle, I found that it is easily fall back in lower angles. The kickstand is small and need to place on a still and flat surface.

As you can see, Yoga Tablet 8 has a different body shape than all other tablets. It took me few days to get familiar with its shape.

LENOVO Yoga Tablet 8 Hold mode

LENOVO Yoga Tablet 8 Hold mode

As in Lenovo’s demo, I prefer to hold the battery cylinder with one hand in vertical mode for reading. The ergonomic grip is more comfortable than holding other flat tablets. But, the tablet weight and smooth surface on battery cylinder, make it feels slippery to hold for long usage.

If you hold Yoga Tablet 8 horizontally with speakers at the bottom , it won’t be comfortable because of the battery cylinder.

When watching video on sofa, instead of using the tablet’s kickstand, I prefer to hold Yoga Tablet 8 horizontally by resting my index finger under the battery cylinder. It is Stand-mode upside down in the air.

Display

LENOVO Yoga Tablet 8

LENOVO Yoga Tablet 8

Yoga Tablet 8 is using 8-inch LED IPS multi-touch display with 1280×800 pixels resolution, which converted to 188.68 PPI. The screen resolution is common among budget tablets.

I did not notice colour balance problem. I enjoy using Yoga Tablet 8 for web surfing and reading articles, and watching video.

The viewing angle is good, I can read on screen text clearly in any modes – hold, stand, or tilt. Lenovo claims that it has 178 degree viewing angle.

Sound

Every tablet should have front-facing speakers. Sadly, most tablets put their poor little speakers at the back or side.

Yoga Tablet 8 is one of the few tablets with front-facing stereo speakers. Better still, Lenovo make the audio output better with Dolby Digital Plus enhancement.

Depends on the tablet mode you are using, the volume buttons act differently. Volume up/down button are not fixed, the volume function can switch depends on the tablet alignment. For example, the volume up button in stand mode will become volume down button when you flip the tablet upside down.

It is quite confusing at first but become natural later – regardless the tablet alignment, the upper volume button increases volume, or vice versa.

Watching videos and listening to music on Yoga Tablet 8 is a pleasant experience. It may not be the top class audio output but better than average tablets.

Software

Yoga Tablet 8 runs Android 4.2 Jelly Bean. It does not have app drawer, all installed apps are on the home screens. You can arrange apps in folders, you know, just like how iOS works. The app icons are cute looking with rounded corners and shadow.

Yoga Tablet 8 apps screenshot

Yoga Tablet 8 apps screenshot

The tablet includes a Smart Side Bar software that slide out from the home screen’s edge offer you quick access to frequently used apps in hold and stand modes. It appears that the sound setting also changed according to the mode you are in.

However, the mode detection is not always right. Good to know that you can manually tell the tablet which mode you are using via the quick settings menu.

Performance

Lenovo Yoga Tablet 8 uses 1.2 GHz Quad-core MTK 8389 processor and 1GB RAM.

It is not the top performance processor like MediaTek’s True 8-core CPU but normal tablet tasks such as web surfing, games, video playback can be handled without sweat.

While no problem handling multiple background apps, I noticed that sometimes Yoga Tablet 8 shows loading spinner after exit app. Not a big issue, it is one to two seconds waiting before return to home screen.

Yoga Tablet 8 benchmarks

Yoga Tablet 8 benchmark scores: Quadrants (left) and Antutu. (click to enlarge)

Here are the benchmark test scores for your references:

  • Antutu: 10238
  • Quadrant: 4861
  • Vellamo HTML5: 1549
  • Vellamo Metal: 496
  • 3DBenchmark Ice Storm: 2959

Compare to Gphone EVO with 8-core CPU (read my review here) , Yoga Tablet 8 (quad-core) is about 50% slower.

Battery life

One of the selling feature of Yoga Tablet 8 is its huge battery capacity – 6000 mAh.

In my test, the battery drained 8% after playing 1 hour YouTube video, meaning it could play non-stop video for around 12.5 hours.

Normal usage should last up to 18 hours as Lenovo claimed. During my review period, I only charge Yoga Tablet 8 every couple of days. Very nice!

Camera

Yoga Tablet 8 has dual cameras: 5MP back; 1.6MP front. The camera app has both photo and video buttons sitting side-by-side, allows you to take photo or video without changing shooting mode.

The front camera could not capture moving objects in indoor (low light). I only get 1 good take out of 10 of my selfie with baby:

Yoga Tablet 8 front camera test - indoor (click to enlarge)

Yoga Tablet 8 front camera test – indoor (click to enlarge)

Do not expect high quality photo using the 5MP back camera. As shown in the sample picture below taken in good light condition, the result is over exposed, low contrast. The details are lost.

Yoga Tablet 8 front camera test - outdoor (click to enlarge)

Yoga Tablet 8 front camera test – outdoor (click to enlarge)

Here is sample indoor video taken by Yoga Tablet 8 back camera:

Specs

  • Processor: MTK 8389 Quad Core 1.2GHz
  • OS: Android 4.2 Jelly Bean
  • Display: 8.0″ LED 1280800 IPS Multi-touch
  • RAM: 1GB
  • Storage: 16GB EMMC, up to 64GB microSD
  • Dimension: 8.4“ x 5.7” x (0.1–0.3)”
  • Bluetooth: Bluetooth 4.0
  • Sensor: G-Sensor & Ambient Light Sensor
  • GPS/Voice Call/3G/WiFi: Yes
  • Speaker/Mic/SIM: Yes
  • Camera: 1.6MP front, 5.0MP back
  • Ports: 1x micro-USB, 1x 3.5mm audio jack
  • Battery: 2 cells 6000mAh
  • Weight: 400g

Price: RM 999

Verdict

Lenovo Yoga Tablet 8’s build quality is good, the unique cylindrical design is comfortable to hold.

With kickstand, front-facing stereo speakers and long battery life, Yoga Tablet 8 is the best tablet for watching movies.

However, there are other cheaper 7“ or 8” tablets with higher resolution, better performance, and less weight.

Photos

I would like to thank LENOVO for the opportunity to review Yoga Tablet 8. This is a free product review with honest write-up. Interesting to send your products for review? Get in touch with me.

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2 Responses to [Review] Lenovo Yoga Tablet 8 is Best Tablet for Watching Movies

  1. nas June 19, 2014 at 4:19 pm #

    hi. just to check whether the phone call feature on your yoga 8 works ? seems a lot of online reviews mention everything but the phone call feature. rgds nas.

    • Cheon-Fong Liew June 20, 2014 at 2:16 pm #

      Hi Nas, Yoga Tablet 8 supports voice calls. Thank you.

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