The Lenovo IdeaPad 730S is notable not just for what it offers, but for what it doesn’t.

Unlike many other laptops in the $900-and-up price range, the IdeaPad 730S doesn’t transform into a tablet and doesn’t even have a touchscreen. It uses a modest 1080p display instead of a battery-chewing QHD or 4K panel, and its wildest flourish is a Dolby Atmos speaker system, which for a laptop actually sounds pretty good.

By trimming away fancy gimmicks, Lenovo has delivered a lightweight laptop that looks great and performs well for a reasonable price.

One word of caution, though: We’ve tested two of these laptops, and both had constant Wi-Fi connectivity issues across multiple networks. Lenovo’s suggested fix involved installing a newer Wi-Fi driver for a different laptop. This solved the problem, but the company hasn’t said when it will officially release those drivers for the 730S.

Price and specifications

Lenovo sent us the $1000 version of the 730S, which includes an 8th-generation Intel Core i5-8265U (1.6GHz) processor, Intel UHD 620 graphics, 8GB of DDR3 RAM, and a 256GB solid state drive. You can save $100 by opting for 128GB of storage, and you can upgrade to a Core i7-8565U (1.8 GHz) processor—in either storage configuration—for $200 more.

In all cases, you’ll get a non-touch IPS display with a resolution of 1920×1080. The maximum brightness we measured of 317 nits is surprisingly good for the price: not far behind the 337 nits we measured for Microsoft’s Surface Laptop 2, and well above the 250-260 nits that we consider to be average. The viewing angles are great.


Unlike some rival thin-and-light laptops, the 730S doesn’t stamp a logo in the middle of the lid or underneath the display. The only sign that you’re using a Lenovo laptop—once you remove the obligatory stickers, of course—is a tiny embedded logo on the lid’s upper-left corner.

lenovo730souter Jared Newman / PCWorld

The lack of a large logo in the middle of the lid is a refreshing change from the showy stamps on other laptops.

Combine that tasteful approach with edge-to-edge display glass, narrow bezels around the screen, some distinctive shield-shaped keycaps, and a dark-gray aluminum frame, and you end up with a pretty slick-looking laptop. Lenovo even shaved a millimeter off last year’s IdeaPad 720S design, so the new model measures just 0.47-inch thick, and a very portable 2.4 pounds.

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