Lenovo ThinkPad Tablet 2 review
Lenovo makes its first Atom-powered Windows 8 tablet, but it isn’t good enough to depose the Dell Latitude 10
Review Date: 30 Apr 2013
Reviewed By: Sasha Muller
Price when reviewed: £583 (£700 inc VAT)
Features & Design
Value for Money
Lenovo is no stranger to making business-focused tablets, but its latest creation, the ThinkPad Tablet 2, is its first attempt at a serious-minded 10.1in Windows slate. With an IPS screen, integrated stylus, and an Intel Atom CPU promising all-day battery life, this could be the tablet your briefcase has been waiting for.
Lenovo’s done well to imbue the Tablet 2 with a little of the classic ThinkPad identity. The rear is covered in smooth, soft-touch matte black plastic – the familiar uniform of the ThinkPad – and the red tip of the stylus docked in the tablet’s top edge mimics the bright red of the trackpoint on Lenovo’s business laptops. It’s light, too, weighing only 568g.
Build quality isn’t the match of the best ThinkPads, though. There’s some give in the rear panel, and the chassis has a little side-to-side flex, too, but it feels tough enough to survive life in and out of the office. Our review unit survived a couple of (accidental) drops onto thin office carpet tiles, and kept soldiering on as if nothing had happened.
The Lenovo’s 10.1in, 1,366 x 768 IPS screen does its job well. Brightness reaches a maximum of 322cd/m2, which is ample for most situations, and the panel’s contrast ratio of 657:1 makes for solid, punchy image quality, with rich, bold colours. The one slight annoyance is the position of the automatic brightness sensor: we occasionally found the sensor obstructed by our thumb when holding the tablet in landscape mode, which caused the screen to dim.
Inside the matte black chassis, Intel’s Atom keeps Windows 8 Pro 32-bit ticking over. The processor in question is the dual-core 1.8GHz Atom Z2760, and it’s backed by 2GB of RAM and 64GB of solid-state storage. It isn’t a lightning-quick combination, as the Lenovo’s overall score of 0.17 in our Real World Benchmarks demonstrates, but as long as you don’t tax it unkindly with heavyweight applications, it works well. It responds instantly to every pinch, flick and edge swipe, and the start screen zooms into view without pause for thought.
The Tablet 2's stylus slots securely into the tablet’s top edge when not in use. A button on the stylus’ edge provides right-click support, and while it's a little small for large hands, we found it worked well; it worked well for taking advantage of Windows’ handwriting support, and annotating Word or OneNote documents. Scribbling in Fresh Paint wasn’t quite so successful, however, and although Lenovo claims that the digitiser recognises 1,024 pressure levels, it didn’t feel all that sensitive in use.
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