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Lenovo Active Pen 2 vs 1 (Review & Compatibility Guide)

Lenovo Active Pen 2 vs 1 (Review & Compatibility Guide)

This article will provide a complete review of the Lenovo Active Pen 2. An active stylus with various core improvements compared to its previous active pen 1 model. Additionally, these improvements allow the Lenovo pen 2 to significantly stand out compared to other alternative pens.  

You may be an artist, a teacher, work professional, or just someone simply looking for a replacement Lenovo active pen 2 looking to determine it’s compatibility with your exact Lenovo tablet or laptop.

These lenovo active pen 2 (vs active pen 1) improvements are significant and include bluetooth compatibility for ‘true’ pressure sensitivity, an improved nib, more shortcut buttons, and a longer tip (allows you to see your lines as you draw).

Related: 7 Best stylus pens for Lenovo Yoga, Thinkpad, and Ideapad models

Related: Lenovo Thinkpad vs Ideapad: Which is better? | Comparison

Lenovo pen compatibility

The Lenovo active pen 2 compatibility list & chart provided in this post will help you find the compatible tablets and laptops in which the Lenovo active pen 2 and active pen 1 can connect to. 

Furthermore, I’ll be providing a full review of the Lenovo stylus pens, they’re precision, shortcut buttons, extra features, and whether or not they work for your exact device and needs.

Lenovo Active Pen 2 compatibility

The Lenovo Active Pen 2 stylus is highly compatible and can be connected to a variety of Lenovo laptops and tablets. Pinpointing exact compatibility between the lenovo active pen 1 and 2 can be complex.

The following is a complete compatibility list/chart of the Lenovo Active Pen 2:

Lenovo TabletLenovo Active Pen 2Lenovo Active Pen
Lenovo Yoga 740CompatibleNo
Lenovo Yoga 720CompatibleNo
Lenovo Yoga 900NoCompatible
Lenovo Yoga 920CompatibleNo
Lenovo Yoga 910NoNo
Lenovo Yoga 940NoNo
Lenovo Miix 700NoCompatible
Lenovo Miix 720CompatibleCompatible
Lenovo Miix 510CompatibleCompatible
Lenovo Miix 520CompatibleNo
Think Pad X1 (Gen 2)CompatibleNo
  • I’ve researched and tested to find exactly which devices the Lenovo active pen 2 and 1 can connect to properly. Note: Lenovo Active Pen 1 is also referred to as simply “Lenovo Active Pen”.

Using the Lenovo Flex 5 or 14? Or seeking a good alternative pen for lenovo, see our post on Lazarite Pen: Best alternative stylus for Lenovo Flex & Tablets – Full Review

Prices pulled from the Amazon Product Advertising API on:

Lenovo Active Pen 2 Review

Lenovo active pen 2 vs 1-2

Precision: The Lenovo Active Pen 2 is the ultimate stylus for Lenovo as it’s capable of drawing lines and strokes with nearly as precise as the pro-level stylus that Digital Artists use such as Wacom. 

This pen is powered by Wacom’s advanced drawing technology and is ideal for digital artists and remote learning tutors.

Features: The main benefit to the official Lenovo Active Pen 2 when compared to its active pen 1 model is it’s textured nib, extreme accuracy, and overall quality strokes and lines created when drawing. 

The active pen 2 has a slightly longer tip and allows for highly advanced accuracy and responsiveness between your stylus and Lenovo device. The difference in the drawing experience this stylus provides was significant when tested by Digital artists. 

Related: Lenovo Yoga vs Flex: which is better? (Comparison)

However, the benefits of the active pen 2 compared to Lenovo pen 1 were less noticeable for teachers, and work professionals looking for simple assistance in navigating their Lenovo tablet (as expected).

Third-party stylus vs Lenovo Active Pen: Low-cost, third-party alternative stylus pens for Lenovo devices have a very difficult time competing with the Lenovo Active Pen 2. 

This is because the active pen 2 is supported by Lenovo and is both built & designed to work effortlessly with it’s companion lenovo devices. I’ve tested several non-lenovo brand stylus pens and observed issues with pairing, drawing smoothness, and unreliable pressure sensitivity due to the lack of a bluetooth connection.

Pen responsiveness:

A bluetooth connection, like the Lenovo Active Pen 2 has, results in an increased communication between your stylus and the tablet and is ideal for most Artists, designers, and remote learning.

Cons of cheaper stylus: Low cost alternatives oftentimes claim the ‘lack of bluetooth’ they’re stylus is missing results in ‘easy pairing’. However, the truth is that this is a marketing tactic you should avoid falling for if you’re a digital artist of any type and need advanced pressure sensitivity. 

Lenovo Active Pen vs Active pen 2

I’ve noticed an overall intuitive, better feel during drawing on the Lenovo active pen 2. Not to mention the high compatibility and near instant pairing amongst Lenovo devices. 

The active pen 2 has pressure sensitivity levels of 4096 while the active pen 1 has half that of 2048 and communicates using older technology.

Lenovo Active pen vs active pen 2 differences (Chart)

FeaturesLenovo Active Pen 2Lenovo Active Pen 1
Pressure sensitivity40962048
Shortcut buttons32
ConnectivityBluetoothAES (No bluetooth)

If you’re not an artist and simply need a replacement pen for the lenovo Yoga 720, 740, 920, 940 devices and higher, then you can get away with a slightly less costly pen.

Lenovo Active pen 1 lacks a bluetooth connection, one less shortcut button, a less textured nib, shorter tip and half the pressure sensitivity of the active pen 2

Replacement nib (tips)

The benefits of going with a newer model is the availability of Lenovo active pen 2 replacement nibs. I found that newer models typically have easier access to these nibs, particularly if you’re using the stylus for years to come.

The Lenovo battery on the active 2 and 1 require 1 AAAA battery and  lasts for x hours, whereas the active pen 1 has a shorter duration of 

Lenovo Active Pen vs Lenovo active pen 2 for Drawing and note taking

Lenovo Active Pen vs Lenovo active pen 2 for Drawing and note taking

The Lenovo Active Pen 2 and 1 are the most compatible and accurate pens you can use on a Lenovo device because these pens are created by Lenovo directly. Between the two, the Lenovo Active Pen boasts many benefits over the Active pen 1 and third party stylus for drawing.

Drawing on a touchscreen tablet is possible, but nothing comes close to using a pen. For the best possible experience with drawing at your tablet, the Lenovo Active Pen 2 is a must-have.

For a full in depth look on these pens, please visit: The Best pen for Lenovo (Lenovo Stylus Pen)

Below is an overview of the active pen 1 vs 2 review for specifically drawing, sketching, and taking notes for either school or work.

  • The Lenovo Active Pen 2 is designed with a lighter feel and more slender body than its previous model.
  • Improved pen-to-screen responsiveness means drawing on the screen feels more natural, fluid, and effortless.
  • Active pen 2 by Lenovo is the Ideal Lenovo option for artists who desire to use their Lenovo Yoga, Lenovo ideapad, Lenovo Thinkpad, and other Lenovo Tablets for digital art projects.
  • The active pen 2 is compatible with multitouch gesture, the Lenovo Active Pen 2 has one less shortcut button and is less accurate regarding precision and pressure sensitivity.

Related: 7 Best Stylus for Amazon Fire HD 8 & 10

Performance of the Lenovo Active Pen for work, note-taking, drawing, and digital art?

Performance of the Lenovo Active Pen for work, note-taking, drawing, and digital art_

It has double the pressure sensitivity levels, a bluetooth connection (for accurate communication with your Lenovo touchscreen), and textured nibs. These benefits are certainly a step up when drawing or note taking on a Lenovo touchscreen since you’ll be provided with more accuracy; the level of many Wacom tablets and other professional digital art tablets.

There are some other pens, such as the adonit models that also compete with the Apple Pencil. However, the Apple Pencil is not compatible on the Lenovo Active Pen.

The differences between both models are fairly noticeable, and it’s important that you understand what requirements you need for work, note-taking or drawing. If you’re just using it for Zoom, either pen will work just fine. When in doubt, the active pen 2 is hard to compete with by third party alternatives because of the Lenovo connectivity.

It comes with an extra button, more features than its predecessor, and delivers a much better experience to those who want to use it for digital artwork using the compatible Lenovo 2-in-1 touchscreens.

Lenovo Active Pen 2 for Yoga

Lenovo Active Pen 2 for Yoga

Is the Lenovo active pen 2 compatible with Yoga 910?

The Lenovo Yoga 910 is not compatible with active stylus pens. You can attempt to connect it but it won’t be able to draw. There is not a ‘digitzer’ embedded in the display to enable the drawing functions. This is a very common issue amongst consumers of the Yoga C920 Lenovo model and is important to understand it is not pen compatible.

Is the Lenovo active pen 2 compatible with Yoga 920 ?

Yes, the Lenovo active pen 2 is compatible with the Lenovo Yoga 920 tablet. Serving as a very well fitting stylus for drawing, note-taking and general use for Yoga 920 models.

Is the Lenovo active pen 2 compatible with Yoga 940?

No, it is not. The Lenovo Yoga 940 has its own integrated pen and can be found by visiting the official lenovo website. The integrated lenovo pen that comes with the Yoga C940 is a bit on the smaller side compared to other pens, however this is the current compatible pen and works best with its advanced pressure sensitivity technology.

Is the Lenovo active pen 2 compatible with Yoga 720?

Yes, the Lenovo active pen is compatible with the Lenovo Yoga 720 tablet and models 720-12IKC and 720-13IKB. The Active Pen 2 works an ideal replacement for those in need of a proper lenovo pen for drawing as a tutor, artist, or work professional.

Is the Lenovo active pen 2 compatible with Thinkpad X1?

Yes, it is compatible with the thinkpad X1 Tablet Gen 2 (20JB, 20 JC)

Lenovo active pen 2 vs Bamboo ink

The Lenovo active pen 2 and 1 outshine the bamboo ink as it typically runs a lower-price point and has many of the same quality and features. The Lenovo active pen 2 and 1 models are built with their lenovo devices in mind and thus more compatible regarding pressure sensitivity and drawing experience as it’s tailored with this purpose in mind. 

Wacom makes outstanding stylus, however the Bamboo Ink benefits do not outweigh its cost when compared to the Lenovo Active pen models in terms of pressure sensitivity, ease of use, and overall drawing experience.

Lenovo active pen 1 Review

Lenovo Active Pen 1 Pros and cons review compatibility

The Lenovo active pen 1 has 2096 pressure sensitivity and a few shortcut buttons, but lacks one back button compared to the Lenovo Active pen 2.

The Active pen 1 is ideal for those on a budget and simply need a compatible stylus that is both reliable and works great for teaching, remote/online learning, and work professionals presenting projects. 

When it comes to drawing the Lenovo active Pen 1 is not particularly at a disadvantage as a standalone product, but when compared to the active pen 2 model it lacks in terms of true pressure sensitivity since it does not have bluetooth and instead uses technology that interacts less accurately.

Note: If you’re a teacher, you may want to consider a digital writing pad for online teaching

These differences are significantl and make a difference for graphic designers, photographers and anyone in the artist/creative space looking to build creative projects of the professional tier.

Lenovo active pen 1 Compatibility list

Lenovo active pen is highly compatible amongst lenovo tablets and laptops. However, it’s still important to check if your exact device works together with the lenovo active pen 1 before choosing it as your touchscreen stylus.

The lenovo active pen 1 is compatible with the following devices:

  • Lenovo Yoga 900 models: Yoga C930, C920, 900S-12ISK, 
  • Lenovo Think pad X1 Yoga gen 3, X1 Extreme, X1 tablet gen 3
  • Lenovo Miix 510, 
  • Lenovo Miix 700, 
  • Lenovo Miix 720

How to connect Lenovo active pen 1

How to connect lenovo active pen 1

Online documentation and official Lenovo instructions may not always present information in a way that less tech savvy users can comprehend. Using a stylus pen may be unfamiliar to you. A capacitive stylus does not need pairing, so setting up an active pen can be more challenging.

To set up the Lenovo active pen 1, seek out a pairing button, try holding the pairing button the device while having all drivers updated and stylus settings enabled in the Lenovo laptop settings. Look for the Lenovo device and hit connect – the pen should be recognized by the device and you can begin writing and drawing.

If this does not work, then you’ll need to ensure all drivers are updated on your Lenovo laptop. You also want to be sure the pen is charging his battery. 

How to set up and use the Lenovo Active Pen 2 properly

How to set up and how to use lenovov active pen 2 and 1

The user manual of the Lenovo Active Pen 2 often gets lost or can not be found. I’ve compiled a set of instructions to help you set up and use your Lenovo Active Pen 2, no manual needed. Keep in mind you should always update your stylus pens driver if your Lenovo Active Pen is not working.

Here’s how to set up and use your Lenovo Active Pen 2:

How to use Lenovo Active pen 2.jpg
Image courtesy of Lenovo
  1. Enter pairing mode buy holding down the bluetooth button located at the top of the device for 3+ seconds.
  2. Next, click the bluetooth button one time when using an app or software. This functionality depends on if the app you are using supports this feature.
  3. Finally, attempt to double click the bluetooth button to connect to the app or software when the 1-click method does not work. Different apps have different pairing capability and Lenovo Active Pen 2cmpatibilities.

How to replace the battery in a Lenovo Active Pen 1 & 2:

How to replace battery of Lenovo active pen 1 and 2
Image courtesy of Lenovo
  1. With the stylus tip facing down towards the ground, spin the upper half of the Lenovo Active Pen 2 counter-clockwise (to your left).
  2. Next, pull and slide the ‘cap’ of the stylus pen off to reveal the battery
  3. Finally, insert the AAAA+ battery into the stylus and slide back the stylus cap, twisting clockwise to tightening securely.
  4. You’ve now replaced the battery of your Lenovo Active Pen 2

To replace the bluetooth battery of the Lenovo active pen 2, you’ll need to follow the following steps:

  1. Position the Stylus tip facing downwards towards the ground and spring counter-clockwise until the cap safely releases. Use a screwdriver or small coin to spin the bluetooth gadget off. 
  2. Inside the Pen you’ll see two small pieces and this will allow you to replace the bluetooth battery.

It’s important to note that the Lenovo active pen 2 has bluetooth, while the active pen 1 does not and replacement is not necessary for the standard, original, older model Lenovo active pen.


Lenovo active pen 2 compatible with iPad

No, the Lenovo active pen 2 is not designed to work fluently with the iPad Air or Pro as it’s not an Apple recommended or compatible product. 

For a list of ideal stylus pens for iPad you can visit our guide here, which covers tailored iPad stylus compatibility regarding drawing and digital as well as the procreate app.

Are Lenovo Active Pens compatible with the ThinkBook?

The Lenovo Active Pen is not compatible with the ThinkBook models, however the ThinkBook Yoga model can use the ThinkBook Yoga Integrated Smart Pen.

The details between the ThinkBook and ThinkPad series vary and more in-depth knowledge on this can be found in our post: ThinkBook vs ThinkPad: What are the differences? (comparison)


The Lenovo Active Pen 2 is compatible with Yoga 720, 920, think pad X1 and various other Lenovo device models as specified closely in this post. The Lenovo active pen vs active pen 1 review is highly tailored towards digita artists as well as those who simply want to get the most out of their Lenovo tablet and 2-in-1 devices with a touchscreen. 

Choosing the proper pen with the correct compatibility requires reading the close details outlined in this post and will help you decide which lenovo active pen is ideal for your use. The two main pens are the Lenovo active pen 1, 2 and then you have the specific integrated model stylus pens like that of the Yoga 940. 

The battery, pen pressure and overall note-taking or writing experience is significantly improved on the Active pen 2 vs the active pen. However, if you are not focused on the advanced Lenovo pen 2 pen pressure and how hard or light you press creating different strokes, then the Lenovo active pen 1 may be your ideal pen choice, especially if you are the type that values an inexpensive alternative.

Overall, the lenovo active pen 2 poses significant advantages for artists and teachers, while the Lenovo active pen 1 poses a better price benefit for those who use their lenovo tablet or touchscreen laptop for simple uses such as navigation or aiming for easier use of lenovo devices.

About the author:

Photo of Paul Michael, Founder of MediaPeanut

Paul Michael

Paul Michael is a media and technology expert whose research reveals how technology and media are being used in the world today. He has expertise on computers, the internet, streaming, Roku, electronics, and education. He also enjoys graphic design & digital art. Paul has his Bachelors of Arts and Science(s) from Rutgers University-New Brunswick, NJ