Lenovo Thinkpad X1 Carbon Touch
Lenovo refreshed its Thinkpad X1 Carbon in
March this year and now claims it is the thinnest 14-inch Ultrabook on the
market; the assertion is at least true compared to the other two 14-inchers in
two complaints marred my experience with the X1 Touch. Foremost is battery
life. While I managed to score an extra half hour of video playback versus the
old X1, at 3.5 hours of running time, it is still at the bottom of the heap of
Windows 8 laptops when it comes to longevity.
The most prominent update - and strongest
feature - is its keyboard. Lenovo removed the entire top row of keys and
replaced it with a touch panel with different functions depending on the app
that is active. You can cycle through four interfaces by touching the Fn key on
the extreme left. Options include F1 to F12 keys, volume adjustment, display
brightness adjustment, keyboard backlight toggle, monitor/project setup, window
switching and access to Lenovo’s own settings panel for voice recognition and
As a result, the Home and End keys now sit
at where the Caps Lock key usually is, and you have to double tap the Shift key
to activate Caps Lock. The Insert key is gone, and the Delete key is located at
the top right corner next to Backspace, increasing the chance of pressing one
when you meant the other. Overall, the keys have good spacing but we would
prefer more friction, instead of a fingerprint attracting glossy plastic. The
X1 Carbon also includes Lenovo’s signature red Trackpoint, and a consumer-style
clickpad, rather than the conventional trackpad buttons.
The display has been bumped up to an
ultra-sharp WQHD resolution at 2,560 x 1,440 pixels, giving it a distinct edge
in screen clarity. The anti-reflective coating is both great at reducing glare
and fending off fingerprints. The IPS screen has excellent viewing angles,
allowing easy reading even from an almost perpendicular position. Whether this
is a plus point depends on individual needs though, especially if you often
work on confidential documents.
the rather obviously named ThinkPad X1 Carbon Touch, Lenovo brings its flagship
ultrabook into the Windows 8 era, adding a touchscreen to the package but
leaving most of the rest of the device unchanged. If you were enthralled by the
Carbon during its first go-round late last year and are prepared to add
touchability to your routine, it’s definitely a laptop to consider.
Lenovo has upgraded both USB ports to USB
3.0, with one on each side of the machine. Other ports include full-sized HDMI,
Mini DisplayPort, a duo headphone/mic jack and Lenovo’s own OneLink power
connector on the left; a Kensington Security Slot and an Ethernet adapter port
on the right. There is no SD card slot this time around, but it has a microSIM
card slot at the rear for 4G connectivity.