Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon Gen10 Review

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Lenovo ThinkPad Carbon X1 Gen 10 is one of the “performance” laptops that many companies and people have on their short lists. It’s been that way for many years, but the 2022 X1 Carbon Gen10 pushes the envelope. It comes with new display options and Intel Gen12 processors that have a significantly higher core count than last year’s models. Let’s test it!

Configurations

Our unit came with the following specs: Intel i7-1260P, 16 GB RAM, 512 GB SSD (Samsung MZVL2512HCJQ-00BL7) sa 1900 × 200 500 NIT touchscreen with Windows Hello IR web camera and ThinkPad Privacy Guard. 2269 in CDW, but you can find potential deals on Lenovo.com.

The configuration of the ThinkPad X1 Carbon Gen 10 is highly flexible and comes in many different variants. The nine CPU options they range from Core i5-1235U (10+8 cores) to Core i7-1280P (14+8 cores) Intel 12th generation P-series mobile processors. This means they all feature Intel Iris Xe graphics integrated into the CPU.

The primary processor is paired with 8/16/32 GB of LPDDR5-2000 RAM, soldered to the motherboard. 16GB should work fine for most peopleand if you need 32 GB, we believe you know why. There are storage options 256/512/1024 and 2048 GB SSD via PCIe 4.0 (versus 3.0 before).

Fortunately, the SSD drive is easily accessible after removing some of the screws that hold the bottom cover. Therefore, users can easily change/upgrade it.

Design

Lenovo has kept the overall design of the ThinkPad X1 Carbon similar to last year’s. There are changes from the Gen 9 model, but the overall theme and chassis are similar enough that you’d be hard pressed to tell them apart from a distance.

The ratio between its weight 2.48 pounds (1.12kh) and system performance (more on that later) are one of the many reasons why the Thinkpad X1 Carbon is so popular. This exceptionally light weight comes from the carbon fiber and magnesium construction.

Less glamorous, but just as important, Lenovo uses far more recycled materials (including plastics) than before. Even the packaging is made from 90% recycled or sustainable materials.

In conjunction with its resistance (spill-resistant keyboard, MIL-STD-810H certification), it’s always been hard to beat, and that’s still true for this 10th generation. And finally, when you add hardware + software security and physical security (nano-Kensington port, multi-layer BIOS security), it’s easy to see why it’s a popular choice for businesses.

Keyboard / Trackpad

The keyboard has a typical ThinkPad layout (including the Fn key at the bottom left), and while the depth of the key travel isn’t as deep as on larger ThinkPads, the overall feel is familiar and comfortable. Lenovo has been very consistent with this over the years, and we’re tempted to have separate ThinkPad keyboard reviews for reference.

As we said before, the keyboard is spill resistant and has two levels of backlighting to make it readable even in low light. This keyboard is also designed to use the keys as an “air intake” to cool the computer. It’s a great idea.

The glass trackpad is 56 x 110 mm (2.20 x 4.33 inches), large and extremely smooth. Three physical buttons (Linux friendly) take up some surface area, and we think it’s worth it. Alternatively, it’s also a clickpad, so you can click the mouse directly by pressing the trackpad.

Ports

The laptop’s chassis is thick enough to have basic full-size ports, so dongles aren’t necessary in most cases. Exist two USB-A (full size) 3.2 Gen1 atwith USB-C Thunderbolt 4 (40 Gbit/s, Power Delivery 3.0 and DisplayPort 1.4a) are the best way to dock and connect external displays to this computer.

The Full size HDMI The (4K/60) port is extremely useful for frequent presenters who may need to connect to projectors without fear of forgetting/losing a dongle/adapter – what a great range of ports.

Due to theft these days, Nanosecurity Port Kengsington It seems to be a necessity in some urban areas and thieves may move on to an easier target. It’s also a source of peace when you leave your laptop on your temporary desk during lunch.

2x USB-C TB4 (1 USB-PD)
2x USB-A 3.2 Gen1 (left/right)
1x full HDMI 4K/60Hz
3.5 mm (speaker + microphone)
Kensington nano-security anti-theft lock
nano-SIM tray (optional, right)

Sound quality

The sound quality is high. Watching movies or TV shows is enjoyable because the voices are clear (this also applies to video conferencing). The sound is loud enough, but it would be nice to get more bass. The bass level is to be expected for this type of ultralight computer, so it’s hard to complain.

Heavier travelers more often use headphones, which would bring better spatial distribution and at the same time ensure peace for neighbors in the hotel room.

Display

Lenovo offers up to seven different ones 14-inch display Configurations 16:10. Passing by standard WUXGA (1920×1200) resolution with a brightness of 400 nits to a 4K WQUXGA (3840×2400) touch screen with excellent color accuracy.

One of the most interesting display options is 2.8 KB (2880 × 1800) OLEDwhich is HDR-able at 500 NIT brightness. The maximum level of brightness requires HDR content, but for multimedia applications we usually prefer OLED. For professional IPS creative work LCD may have slightly more accurate colors.

Our unit has a 1920×1200 touchscreen display with excellent brightness (500 NIT) and color accuracy (100% sRGB, 1.3 Delta-E). It works great for light creative work (photo editing, Web Dev) and we don’t feel like we need more for what we do. However, Lenovo has much better options, such as the 4K HDR400.

The the display tilts 180 degrees so you can lay it completely flat on a table, which can be handy if you’re doing something with a touchscreen or presenting to someone across the table. And yes, you can open the lid with one finger.

The ThinkPad X1 Carbon can handle it four independent displays (native + 3 external) thanks to Thunderbolt (5K/60) and HDMI (4K/60).

Webcam

Our camera is FHD 1080p with an IR (infrared) webcam and electronic privacy shutter, but Lenovo also has more affordable 720p options.

The 1080p camera performs significantly better than Lenovo’s previous 720p laptop webcams in terms of detail and noise. If you use video calls a lot, we strongly recommend getting the best camera specs.

Lenovo also has camera software features that will put the laptop into a low-power state if you walk away from the computer. The infrared camera enables quick and easy login despite the use of a very strong password.

System performance

As expected with 12th generation of Intel processors, the new ThinkPad X1 Carbon performs really well in raw CPU performance, with nearly 50% higher multi-core performance (Geekbench, Cinebench) compared to last year’s X1 Carbon. The performance boost comes despite this CPU being a low-power model optimized for power efficiency rather than pure speed.

Graphics apps also run well and popular games like Fortnite or Doom Eternal can still run at 30 FPS (medium settings) and are playable. However, you need realistic expectations as there is no dedicated GPU (GPU). Lenovo has other laptops if you need that kind of graphics performance.

The ThinkPad X1 Carbon isn’t insanely hot. Surfaces usually start to feel uncomfortable at 44 degrees C, and the hottest spots of this PC would be around ~48 C under stress, which isn’t that much.

The system self-regulates performance to prevent excessive heat build-up. The fans are not noisy and look at the exhaust system. It is clear that the computer is optimized for quiet office productivity and light creative work.

In terms of network, this new model has WiFi-6E (versus WiFi-6 before) and optional 5G or 4G connectivity that ensures uninterrupted connectivity and added security when avoiding WiFi hotspots.

Finally, SSD performance has improved significantly since last year, with some of the highest numbers in the category – see the table below for a year-over-year comparison.

X1 Carbon Gen 10 battery life

The 57 Wh The Li-Pol battery has not changed since last year and this capacity is serious for this category. As expected, the ThinkPad X1 Carbon Gen10 shows excellent durability and can play video for more than 11 hours. Local video playback is often a good battery proxy for light productivity tasks.

Note that higher resolution displays drain the battery faster, and you can also opt for an even less power-hungry Intel U-series processor (up to the Core i5-1235U).

The charging speed is as good as before (0.76 Wh/min) and we didn’t notice any changes. The charger remains a compact 65W model from Lenovo.

Conclusion

The Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon Gen 10 has solid ultralight performance and, unsurprisingly, remains one of the most popular 14″ for businesses. We recently saw it being offered to employees as standard alongside the Macbook Pro. That’s a great place.

It comes in many different configurations, making it effective for many use models, from basic office productivity to light creative work and development.

Consumers can find the same type of performance features on a smaller budget in the Yoga line, but they don’t come with the security, manageability, and durability that ThinkPads have, so yes, there’s a price difference, but there’s real value associated with it.

Why buy this laptop?

The performance/weight ratio, security options and durability distinguish the ThinkPad X1 carbon from other ultralights. Your IT department will love vPro’s remote management and security functionality. However, perhaps accounting may look twice because of the price.

Potential competitors

The data shows that users considering this laptop are also looking at the following computers (in that order): ThinkPad T14, Apple MacBook Pro, Dell XPS 13 / 13 Plus, ThinkPad P1 and Yoga 9i. In our opinion, the ThinkPad T14 is not an ultralight competitor, but offers the same security and durability.

The XPS 13 is more compact because it has a 13.5” display, but it is heavier and has a slightly smaller battery. The Yoga 9i is a powerful consumer product and will not have the same level of security and durability.

Ultimately, the MacBook Pro is an excellent business computer, but that choice is driven by the Max/Windows choice and the hardware is secondary. If you’re a Windows user, we recommend the ThinkPad X1 Carbon Gen 10.

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As seen on https://www.ubergizmo.com/reviews/lenovo-x1-carbon-x1-gen10-review/

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