Lenovo is no stranger to change, specifically the common, normal iteration of the platforms that they’ve previously found success on. This new generation of tablet in the X-line, though, changes only slightly, adding in the things you’d expect, while keeping the things we’ve liked in the past. But is that enough to ensure this is a good hybrid?
Third time’s the charm
Perhaps the most striking feature is the display itself, which has been suitably improved over its predecessor. They’ve managed to make it both larger and increase the resolution to make for even more pixel density. This years display is a 13-inch panel that sports a 3000×2000 resolution which also is HDR compliant. This is a departure from typical 16:9 aspect ratio and a huge upgrade into something much more usable. Microsoft, and even Apple, have long realized the value of other aspect ratios and how much more pleasurable they are to use and now Lenovo has followed suit. Windows resolution scaling hasn’t quite caught up yet to the high resolution displays that are becoming available in the portable space, but it mostly works here. Unless you use legacy apps, which can still be adjusted with some blur, there are no issues.
The display itself? It’s quite impressive, to say the least. In keeping with its HDR specification it achieved a brightness value of 409 nits and covered 116 percent of the sRGB gamut with a delta E of 3.6 measured out of the box. Fairly impressive on its own and even when considered against the competition.
The keyboard is better than most 2-in-1 devices, being both more stable and having more usable keys overall. They have deep enough travel at 1.3 millimeters and more feedback than should be possible. The keys are just slightly less great than the current, modern Lenovo chiclet keyboard. The included Pro pen is par for the course, in that it’s quite well done and a good experience. It follows your handwriting reasonably quickly and there is little to really complain about. I do think a good pen, such as this, does add great value to a nice tablet. such as this. It’s underlying Wacom technology and the responsiveness make it a must have for a tablet, which has been helping me better replace paper now. My handwriting is terrible, however Windows handwriting recognition is quite good at deciphering it. Even better now is that it has a slot for it in the tablet itself, so you don’t have to worry about where you place it.
The stand is also all new in its design. This new hinge is both highly flexible and quite strong. There was very little wobble and no tendency to bend unless I applied significant force to it. The hinge itself seems as if it would last through many years of use and even some abuse.
|Intel Core i7-8650U (1.9 GHz)
|Intel UHD Graphics 620
|13.0" QHD+ (3000 x 2000) IPS w/ Gorilla Glass 4
|Tablet only: 11.97" x 8.9"x 0.35"; 304.1 x 226 x 8.9mm, starting at 1.96lb (0.89kg)
Tablet + keyboard: 11.97" x 8.9" x 0.59"; 304.1 x 226 x 15.1mm, starting at 2.8lb (1.27kg)
|(2) Thunderbolt 3, Type-C
(1) Microphone / Headphone Combo Jack
(1) Micro-SD Card Reader + Nano-SIM Card Slot
|512GB SAMSUNG PM981 NVMe v1.2
|Black Pogo Keyboard, Mylar surface touchpad, multi-touch, backlit
|Starting price: $1,269, this model: $1,754.10
The Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Tablet does keep fairly cool, however this obviously depends on the workload being used. There’s little room for enormous amounts of cooling, though the little tablet does get to around 98-degrees on the rear while the screen, for us, got up to a maximum of 95-degrees while browsing the internet and watching YouTube at the same time. Not terrible, but also not the coolest. We did notice a little thermal throttling, however this is somewhat expected given the size and the components.
Noise? What noise. Though there is definitely a fan on board, it is nearly inaudible unless you use plan on running Furmark all day long. In fact, it did not register on my decibel meter over ambient noise.
Battery life leave a bit to be desired, however it’s still competitive compared to its peers that are primarily tablets. We saw 6 hours and 1 minute while running a custom script that browses the Internet until it dies. Not terrible, but not great either.
Who its for
The newest version of the X1 Tablet isn’t going to be for everyone. The small form factor and relatively limited performance as a result of being so thin means that this most certainly isn’t going to satisfy the power-user, but that doesn’t mean it is a horrible buy. Quite the opposite, now that the Surface Pro 6 has been properly released, we see this as a very good competitor that might just be slightly better due to the better connectivity available. the Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Tablet is a great mobile platform that offers a great keybaord that has good feedback compared to its competitors and a better overall experience. That, and the battery-life, which is decent for its class, is enough to satisfy. This tablet is for anyone looking for a platform that’s mobile, powerful and strikes a good balance. It exudes typical Lenovo quality and doesn’t really disappoint in any one area given how tiny it is.
Overall? A great device that delivers on more points than most for a 2-in-1 device.
- Battery life