Which one is better for you?

  • Lenovo Yoga 9i (2023)

    Lenovo’s 2023 Yoga 9i has a 13th-generation Intel Core i7 processor and a stunning OLED display. It also has beautifully polished corners and a soundbar hinge down the middle.

    Pros

    • OLED screen will bring content to life
    • Convertible so can be used in different ways
    • Has the latest Intel CPUs
    Cons

    • Battery life won’t be as good as MacBook’s

  • MacBook Pro 2023

    Apple MacBook Pro (2023)

    The 14- and 16-inch MacBook Pro (2023) models adopt the same exterior chassis first introduced in 2021. They offer boosted M2 Pro and M2 Max chips, Wi-Fi 6E and Bluetooth 5.3 support, HDMI 2.1 compatibility, a notched display, and more.

    Pros

    • Great performance when on battery power
    • Epic battery life
    • Great speakers and design

If you’re considering a premium computer in 2023 for work or school, there are two choices that are best in the category. You’ll find the MacBook Pro (2023) which is one of the best Apple Macs, has the new Apple M2 chip under the hood, and is great for video editing and content creators. Then, there’s the Lenovo Yoga 9i (2023) which is one of the best Windows convertibles and has an impressive OLED display, and the latest 13th-generation Intel CPUs under the hood.


If you have those features in mind and are torn between buying either one of these devices, we’re here with a guide that can help you. We’ll be diving deeper into the specifications of both these devices, and exploring how things compare and contrast across various categories.


Lenovo Yoga 9i (2023) vs MacBook Pro (2023): Price, specs, and availability.

You can buy the Lenovo Yoga 9i (2023) right now. Pricing starts at $1,700, but a cheaper model might be on the way soon considering Lenovo announced the laptop with a starting price of $1,500. This model comes with the 13th-generation Intel Core i7-1360P CPU, 16GB RAM, and a 512GB SSD. The display is the standard OLED display, configured to 2880 x 1800 resolution. There’s only one size, and it is 14 inches.

The MacBook Pro (2023) comes in various configurations. There’s a 13-inch size, a 14-inch size, and a 16-inch size. The 13-inch model isn’t the focus of this guide, but it starts at $1,299 and includes the Apple M2 chip with 8GB unified memory and 256GB of storage, and a 13.3-inch LED display at 2560 x 1600 resolution. The 14-inch model and the 16-inch model are what we’ll focus on here since these were refreshed to start the year with newer chips and are closer to the Yoga 9i (2023) in terms of features and specs.

The 14-inch MacBook Pro (2023) model comes in at $2,000 and is configured with the Apple M2 Pro chip, 16GB unified memory, and 512GB SSD with a 14-inch 3024 x 1964 resolution display. Finally, the 16-inch MacBook Pro is the top model you can buy. It costs $2,500 and comes with the Apple M2 Pro chip, 16GB RAM, and 512GB of storage but has a massive 16.2-inch display with 3456 x 2234 resolution.

  • Lenovo Yoga 9i (2023) Apple MacBook Pro (2023)
    Brand Lenovo Apple
    Color Storm Grey, Oatmeal Space Gray, Silver
    Storage Up to 1TB SSD 1GB to 8TB
    CPU Up to 13th-generation Intel Core i7-1360P Apple M2 Pro/M2 Max
    Memory Up to 16GB LPDDR5-5200 32GB/64GB/96GB
    Operating System Windows 11 Home MacOS Ventura 13.2
    Battery 75Wh 96Wh
    Ports 2 x Thunderbolt 4, 1x USB Type-C, 1 x USB Type-A, 3.5mm headphone jack 3x USB-C (Thunderbolt 4), 1x HDMI, 1x headphone jack, 1x MagSafe, 1x SD card slot
    Camera Full HD 1080p + IR camera 1080p webcam
    Display (Size, Resolution) 14-inch, 16:10, up to 4K OLED (3840 x 2400) Liquid Retina XDR display, 16.2-inch Micro-LED panel, 3456 x 2234 at 254 PPI
    Weight Starting at 3.09 pounds (1.4 kg) 4.5 pounds
    GPU Intel Iris Xe graphics (integrated) 38-Core M2 Max
    Dimension 12.52 x 9.06 x 0.6 inches (318 x 230 x 15.25 mm) 12.31 x 8.71 x 0.61 inches
    Price Starting at $1,700 Starts at $3,499

Operating system: Windows vs macOS

MacOS vs Windows 11 image

The biggest difference between the Yoga 9i (2023) and the MacBook Pro (2023) is the operating systems. The Yoga 9i (2023) runs Windows, but the MacBook Pro (2023) is powered by Apple’s macOS. Which device you choose might depend on your lifestyle and taste in operating systems. Apple’s macOS is more suited for creative professionals, and Windows is better suited for productivity. Other than that, there’s also the need to consider which type of phone you use, too. You’ll want to go for macOS if you own an iPhone, and go for Windows if you own an Android phone.

On Apple’s macOS, you get access to a lot of great and easy-to-learn creativity and video editing apps, like iMovie, or Final Cut Pro. You also get access to many apps and services that you have on an iPhone like FaceTime and iMessage. There are many synergies between macOS with other iOS devices. Apple makes it very easy to live with all its devices at once, so if you own other Apple products, macOS and the MacBook Pro (2023) make a lot of sense for you.

If you have other Apple devices, a MacBook is great, and the Yoga 9i is better for those who have Android phones

With Windows, meanwhile, you get a lot of great productivity apps and experiences. Microsoft’s operating system makes it easy to multitask with features like Snap Layouts. You also can connect your Android phone to Windows via Phone Link, and see your Android’s messages, phones, and calls on your PC. Microsoft added iPhone support to Phone Link, and you can use Intel Unison with an iPhone, but it’s not nearly as good as the native iMessage app on macOS. Not to forget, Windows is great for those who like to tweak their operating system, with apps like PowerToys. You don’t get this high-level customization on macOS.

Design: Do you want a convertible or a clamshell laptop?

The Yoga 9i in a tent mode.

Lenovo Yoga 9i (2022) uses the same design as the new 2023 model

Beyond just the operating system, the significant difference between the Yoga 9i (2023) and the MacBook Pro (2023) is the design. The Yoga 9i is a convertible, meaning you can flip the screen around and use it in different ways. The MacBook Pro, meanwhile, is a clamshell laptop, without a touch screen. If you want a more versatile device, definitely consider the Yoga 9i. But if you want a device with more size options and don’t mind not having a touchscreen, go for the MacBook Pro, since there’s a 16-inch model.

Diving into the specifics of the design, the Yoga 9i is a jewel of a device. It has rounded corners and a great polished design. You rotate the screen around the hinge (which has a soundbar) to use it in various modes like tent, stand, or tablet and laptop. The Yoga 9i also only comes in a 14-inch size. It starts at 3.09 pounds and measures 12.52 x 9.06 x 0.6 inches.

The Yoga 9i (2023) is more versatile than the MacBook Pro (2023) since it can be used in different ways

Over on the MacBook, the 14-inch model measurements come in at 12.31 x 8.71 x 0.61 inches, and the weight is 3.6 pounds. The 16-inch model meanwhile is a bit heftier at 14.01 x 9.77 x 0.66 inches and 4.8 pounds. If you must buy the MacBook and are worried about portability, the 14-inch MacBook Pro is more manageable.

If you want to consider the speakers on these devices as part of your purchase, then Apple’s MacBook will excel a bit. The MacBook Pro 16-inch has a high-fidelity six-speaker sound system with force-canceling woofers. The MacBook Pro 14-inch has the same speaker setup. The Yoga 9i has a quad-speaker setup where the soundbar is integrated with two 2W speakers. We don’t think that listening to music or experiencing video calls will be an issue with either device, but the added speakers on the MacBook will make things feel more true to life.

Display: You can’t beat the OLED display on the Yoga 9i

Lenovo-Yoga-9i-g7-display-01

Lenovo Yoga 9i

Even though the MacBook Pro (2023) comes in both 14-inch and 16-inch sizes and has a higher screen resolution, the Lenovo Yoga 9i (2023) has a much better display. Apple is using a Liquid Retina XDR display on its MacBook that packs in a really crisp pixel density, and Lenovo is using an OLED display on its Yoga 9i. Not to forget, the Yoga 9i has a touch screen, but the MacBook does not. So, in terms of overall multimedia use cases here for things like streaming on Netflix, the Yoga 9i excels. Even artists who will be drawing on the screen need the best-looking colors and images will like the Yoga 9i a bit more.

Apple’s Liquid Retina XDR display uses mini-LED technology. It’s a marketing term referring to the high pixel density and smaller LEDs that provide local dimming. It results in great contrast ratio and brightness, but this doesn’t come close in quality to an OLED display which has deeper blacks and brighter whites. As we found in our review of last year’s model, the Yoga 9i hits incredible contrast ratios and brightness, and really makes images come to life. The MacBook Pro (2023) should also feel the same way thanks to the True Tone technology and the wide color gamut, but those in search of the best vibrancy might want to turn to the Yoga 9i.

The Yoga 9i has a really vibrant OLED display

Asides from those basics in screen technology, looking at the screen resolution, the MacBook Pro has a higher resolution display than the Yoga 9i. The 14-inch model has a 3024 x 1964 resolution, and the 16-inch model has a 3456 x 2234 resolution. The Yoga 9i has two screen resolution options, including 2880 x 1800 and 3840 x 2400. If you want more pixels on the Yoga 9i, you’ll want to buy that second model, but it’s a $100 upgrade. Keep in mind, though, that the MacBook has a slightly taller aspect ratio than the Yoga 9i’s 16:10. However, this is because there’s a notch on the top which takes away a bit of screen real estate. The Yoga 9i doesn’t have that so stacking windows side by side and multitasking will be a better experience.

There’s also the touch screen and pen compatibility that makes the Yoga 9i a better laptop. You get a Lenovo Active Pen included with the Yoga 9i, so you can draw and ink on the screen in various modes of use. The MacBook doesn’t support this, though you can technically add touchscreen support by buying an iPad and mirroring your Mac’s display with Sidecar and using the Apple Pencil.

As for the webcam, it’s quite great across both devices. Lenovo is using a 1080p webcam on the Yoga 9i, and it supports Windows Hello, so you can log into your PC with your face. Apple is packing in a 1080p webcam, which is backed by advanced image signal processing, to help you look better on calls. For more secure logins into your Mac, the MacBook has Touch ID.

Performance: Apple’s M2 Max is still king

macbook-pro-m2-max-xda-review-202300204

Thinking about the performance of these devices as part of your purchasing decision? The MacBook Pro (2023) is unbeaten in this category. For tasks like video editing, the MacBook will be much better than the Yoga 9i thanks to Apple’s M2 Pro and M2 Max chips. For general productivity, though, both devices are great, especially the Yoga 9i, thanks to Intel’s new 13th-generation CPUs. Intel’s new CPUs are just last year’s 12th-generation chips since they have performance and efficiency cores and are hybrid processors. But if you plan to go beyond web browsing, the Intel CPUs in the Yoga 9i will slow down a lot. Intel only promises a 10% productivity boost between generations of chips.

Another reason the MacBook Pro (2023) is more powerful than the Yoga 9i (2023) is the GPU and the CPU. Across both 14-inch and 16-inch models, you can configure the laptops with a crazy amount of computing power. On the 14-inch MacBook Pro, you can configure things with the M2 Pro chip that has a 12-core CPU (the base model actually has a 10-core CPU) and 19-core GPU, or the M2 Max with a 12-core CPU and 30-core GPU, and for even more power, the M2 Max with a 12-core CPU and 38‑core GPU. Over on the 16-inch Macbook Pro, it’s about the same, except the entry-level 10-core CPU option doesn’t exist.

The CPU power and GPU power on the MacBook Pro are unmatched

That sounds confusing, but don’t worry as the Yoga 9i isn’t as powerful. Since the Yoga 9i is using the Intel Core i7-1360P CPU, you’ll only get a 12 Core CPU with 4 performance cores and 8 efficiency cores. The GPU is Intel’s Iris Xe graphics, which isn’t nearly as powerful as the GPU inside the MacBook Pro for things like video editing and where graphics are needed.

We didn’t benchmark a 13th-generation Intel CPU yet, but the graph below compared to a 12th-generation chip will show why the MacBook is more powerful based just on the multicore Geekbench testing.

Lenovo Yoga 9i (2022) Core i7-1260P

MacBook Pro 14 (M2 Pro)

MacBook Pro 14 (M2 Max)

MacBook Pro 16 (M2 Max)

Geekbench (Single/Multi)

1,736 / 9,525

1,941/14,965

1,926/14,939

2,770/14,451

For video editing, here are some tests that we performed on the 16-inch MacBook Pro (2023) with the M2 Max chip. As you can tell, the video editing export times are crazy good. We didn’t run these tests on the Yoga 9i, but the results will be nowhere close to what Apple’s MacBooks produced since the Yoga 9i lacks a dedicated GPU.

Video export times

Final Cut Pro (plugged in)

Final Cut Pro (battery power)

Adobe Premiere Pro (plugged in)

Adobe Premiere Pro (battery power)

12-minute, multi-layered 4K/30 FPS video

3:15

3:27

6:52

7:01

4-minute, single layer 8K/24 FPS video

1:37

1:18 (not a typo)

13:47

14:13

Outside of that performance, you’ll see that the MacBook Pro is much more customizable than the Yoga 9i. You can add more RAM and storage to the MacBook than you can with the Yoga 9i since RAM on the MacBook Pro 16-inch goes as high as 96GB, and storage as high as 8TB.

Ports: The MacBook has HDMI and the Yoga USB-A

Ending with ports and connectivity, the MacBook is a better-connected machine. Neither of these devices has a 5G option, but you might prefer the MacBook if you’re going to plug into a display a lot. On the other side of things, you’d probably prefer the Yoga 9i if you need a laptop that has a USB-A port for connecting to an accessory like a keyboard or a mouse.

The MacBook Pro has HDMI 2.1, a 3.5mm headphone jack, an SD card slot, and three USB-C Thunderbolt 4 ports in addition to MagSafe 3 for charging. The Yoga 9i uses USB-C for charging and has 2 Thunderbolt 4 ports, 1 USB-C 3.2 Type-C port, a USB 3.2 Gen 2 Type-A port, and a 3.5 mm headphone jack. You’ll need a dongle with the Yoga 9i if you want to connect to a display.

The MacBook Pro (2023) is better if you don’t mind the high price

If you want the very best laptop, then the MacBook Pro is the one to buy. While it is more expensive than the Yoga 9i, it packs in a much more powerful processor with a better GPU. This means it’ll be better for video editing and GPU-intensive tasks. It also has a higher-resolution display than the base model Yoga 9i, and a better port selection, to avoid using a dongle to connect to a display.

The MacBook Pro (2023) is right for you if:

  • You are a video editor and need a ton of GPU power
  • You don’t need a touchscreen laptop
  • You want a laptop with excellent battery life

MacBook Pro 2023

Apple MacBook Pro (2023)

Editor’s Choice

The 14- and 16-inch MacBook Pro (2023) models adopt the same exterior chassis first introduced in 2021. They offer boosted M2 Pro and M2 Max chips, Wi-Fi 6E and Bluetooth 5.3 support, HDMI 2.1 compatibility, a notched display, and more.

The Lenovo Yoga 9i is still better for a general productivity laptop

The Lenovo Yoga 9i isn’t something to pass on, and it’s still a solid laptop even against the MacBook Pro. At $1,700 it’s cheaper than a MacBook, and you get a much better multimedia experience with it thanks to the OLED display and the convertible form factor that lets you flip the screen around. Intel’s 13th-generation processors are onboard the Yoga 9i end up making it good for day-to-day tasks like web browsing and enjoying much older and lighter PC games, thanks to the 28 watts of power that they deliver. That Yoga 9i also has a USB-A port, if you prefer using accessories with your laptop.

The Lenovo Yoga 9i is right for you if:

  • You want a slightly cheaper laptop
  • You don’t want to buy adapters to get USB-A ports
  • You want the best multimedia experience on a laptop

Yoga_9i__1_-removebg-preview

Lenovo Yoga 9i (2023)

Good alternative

Lenovo’s 2023 Yoga 9i has a 13th-generation Intel Core i7 processor and a stunning OLED display. It also has beautifully polished corners and a soundbar hinge down the middle.

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