Lenovo ThinkPad X1 review (1291-23M)

Lenovo's ThinkPad X1 is an ultraportable Core i5 laptop

Lenovo's ThinkPad X1 laptop.

Lenovo's ThinkPad X1 laptop.

Lenovo's ThinkPad X1 (1291-23M) is an exceptional 13.3in ultraportable laptop. It offers a full-voltage Intel Core i5 CPU, integrated 3G connectivity and great user comfort.

The Lenovo ThinkPad X1 has a thin, wedgelike design. It's just 26mm at its thickest point at the rear and 19mm at the front (including the rubber stands on the laptop's base).

It's a notebook that any professional would be happy to have in a boardroom, but it also has a number of consumer-friendly features, including an HDMI port and good quality speakers. More business-focussed features include an integrated 7.2Mbps mobile broadband modem and a DisplayPort, TPM 1.2 and a vPro chipset.

Along with these features are a plethora of ports, including an SD card clot, a USB 2.0 port as well as a USB 3.0 port and Gigabit Ethernet.

Unfortunately during our tests of the X1, we could not get the SIM card reader to work, despite testing with three different mobile networks. The laptop also offers dual-band Wi-Fi (Intel Centrino Advanced-N 6205), Bluetooth, a high-definition webcam and Intel Wireless Display (Wi-Di) capability.

The X1 is the toughest 13in notebook we've seen. It has a hardened body, a magnesium chassis, Gorilla Glass screen protection and a spill-resistant keyboard. Data integrity is aided by the inclusion of a solid state drive (SSD) rather than a conventional hard drive. The notebook is a little heavier than we expected — it weighs 1.7kg

A sealed body means you can't replace the ThinkPad X1's battery. The battery lasted 2hr 17min in our rundown test, in which we disable power management, enable Wi-Fi, maximise screen brightness and loop an Xvid-encoded video. It's not a bad result for a 4-cell battery. The screen is very bright though, and turning down its brightness while using the X1 for basic Web browsing and document creation will allow you to get more than three hours out of the internal battery. An optional 6-cell, 35 Watt-hour battery slice is available; Lenovo says it provides 10 hours of overall battery life and it costs around $150.

One thing we love about the X1 is its RapidCharge feature, which allows the battery to be recharged in a relatively short amount of time. In our tests, it took only 44min for the battery to charge to 95 per cent — it took 1hr 17min to get to 100 per cent. If you only have 30min to charge it, then it will get to around 80 per cent.

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Tags notebooksLenovolaptopsultraportablesLenovo ThinkPad

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