ThinkPad X1 Carbon
Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon (2012)
|Type||Ultrabook laptop computer|
|Release date||August 2012|
The ThinkPad X1 Carbon is a high-end notebook computer released by Lenovo in 2012 and updated every year since 2014. The ThinkPad X1 Carbon Touch featured a multitouch enabled screen in order to take more effective advantage of Microsoft's touch-optimized Windows 8, Windows 8.1, and Windows 10 operating systems.
In early August 2012, Lenovo released the ThinkPad X1 Carbon as the successor to the earlier ThinkPad X1. The X1 Carbon was first released in China due to the popularity of ThinkPads in that market. In November 2012, Lenovo announced a touch-screen variant called the ThinkPad X1 Carbon Touch designed for use with Windows 8. Its display makes use of multi-touch technology that can detect simultaneous inputs from up to ten fingers. On the performance of the X1 Carbon Touch's SSD, Engadget states, "The machine boots into the [s]tart screen in 11 seconds, which is pretty typical for a Windows 8 machine with specs like these. We also found that the solid-state drive delivers equally strong read and write speeds (551 MB/s and 518 MB/s, respectively), which we noticed the last time we tested an Ultrabook with an Intel SSD."
The X1 Carbon features a solid-state drive (SSD) instead of a hard drive. The base model has 4 gigabytes of memory, an Intel Core i5-3317U processor, and a 128-gigabyte SSD. The most expensive model has an Intel Core i7 processor and a 256-gigabyte SSD. The X1 Carbon requires the use of a dongle to access wired ethernet and some models include 3G or 4G cellular modems.
The base model X1 Carbon has a 14-inch (360 mm) TN screen with a resolution of 1600 by 900 pixels. The X1 Carbon weighs 1.35 kilograms and measures 12.8 inches (330 mm) by 8.94 inches (227 mm) by 0.68 inches (17 mm) (at its thickest). The X1 Carbon's roll cage is made of light-weight carbon-fiber and has a matte black finish.
In November 2012, Lenovo announced a touch-screen variant called the ThinkPad X1 Carbon Touch designed for use with Windows 8. Its display makes use of multi-touch technology that can detect simultaneous inputs from up to ten fingers.
In a review published for CNET, Dan Ackerman wrote, "At first glance, the ThinkPad X1 Carbon looks a lot like other ThinkPads, but in the hand it stands out as very light and portable. The excellent keyboard shows up other ultrabooks, and the rugged build quality is reassuring. With a slightly boosted battery and maybe a lower starting price, this could be a serious contender for my all-around favorite thin laptop."
In another review for CNET, Nicholas Aaron Khoo wrote, "For this geek, there are many things to like about this 14-inch (1600x900 HD+) Ultrabook when it comes to usability when traveling on economy class. These include the backlit and spill-resistant keyboard, side-positioned ports, nice viewing angles, TrackPoint (which not everyone likes), nicely implemented touchpad and biometric login. Unlike it's [sic] poorer cousin, the Lenovo IdeaPad U410, it is able to go into hibernate mode without having the user jump through hoops to enable it."
On the X1 Carbon Touch's SSD performance Engadget states, "The machine boots into the [s]tart screen in 11 seconds, which is pretty typical for a Windows 8 machine with specs like these. We also found that the solid-state drive delivers equally strong read and write speeds (551 MB/s and 518 MB/s, respectively), which we noticed the last time we tested an Ultrabook with an Intel SSD."
In a review for Engadget, Dana Wollman wrote, "Starting with ergonomics, this has one of the best keyboard / touchpad combinations we've seen on a laptop, and that's not even counting that signature red pointing stick. We're also enamored with the design: aside from being well-made, the X1 Carbon Touch is also notably thin and light for a 14-inch machine, especially one with a touchscreen. The display is hardly our favorite, what with the narrow viewing angles, but at least the 1,600 x 900 resolution is nice and crisp."
In its review of the X1 Carbon, Touch Wired wrote, "Lenovo also hasn’t forgotten about the things that users actually care about. Audio is impressive and Dolby-certified. The keyboard is backlit and fully usable, and the glass touchpad was rock solid on this go-round with the Carbon." In its final verdict Wired stated that an "Excellent combination of performance, portability, and durability" and "the best keyboard going" make the Touch 'Wired."
2014 – 2nd generation
The 2014 X1 Carbon features a 4th generation Intel processor and an "Adaptive Keyboard" touch bar where the function keys are normally located.The Home and End keys replaced the Caps Lock key, requiring the user to double-press the Shift key to activate Caps Lock. The Delete key was also repositioned to the right of the Backspace key instead of above it.
Peter Bright wrote a disparaging review for "Ars technica". He found the X1 Carbon with the Lenovo named "Adaptive Keyboard" to be near perfect but unusable because the keyboard was so non-standard when compared with that of a desktop, the older Thinkpad T410s and Lenovo Helix keyboards. As a touch typist, he despairs at the removal of the function keys, and the repositioning of Caps Lock, replacing it with Home End, and, that pretty much each little-finger key has moved.
2015 – 3rd generation
The 2015 X1 Carbon comes with a 2560 by 1440 screen. Lenovo resumed using dedicated mouse buttons under the TrackPoint in the 2015 model. A fingerprint reader is to the right of the keyboard and can be used to log into Windows.
In a review for Laptop Magazine, Mark Spoonauer wrote, "The ThinkPad X1 Carbon is easily one of the best business ultraportables available. While on the pricey side, the $1,754 configuration I reviewed delivers everything I want in a laptop: long battery life, a comfortable typing experience and strong overall performance. The X1 Carbon's design doesn't wow, but it's light and feels like it can stand up to abuse. However, the lack of an SD card slot is annoying, and I wish the 14-inch display were as bright as it is sharp."
2016 – 4th generation
2017 – 5th generation
In January 2017 at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES), Lenovo presented their fifth generation X1 Carbon, 1.14 kg weight, which delivers up to 15.5 hours of battery life starting at $1,329. A silver version was also introduced.
The ThinkPad X1 Carbon 5th Generation laptops built before 2017-11-01 were recalled after reports that a screw left in the laptop during manufacturing could damage one of the lithium batteries causing one of the cells to short out, leading to rapid overheating and failure. 83,500 of the laptops have been sold in the US and Canada before recall.
2018 – 6th generation
In January 2018 at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES), Lenovo presented their sixth generation X1 Carbon, weighing 1.13 kg. It features an 8th generation Intel i5 or i7 processor, along with up to 16 GB of RAM and up to 1 TB of storage. X1 branding is also now present on the cover. The ThinkPad logo has changed to black instead of the previous silver branding.
- "Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon review". CNET. 8 August 2012. Retrieved 15 August 2012.
- "Lenovo unveils lighter, quicker ThinkPad inspired by convenience of tablets, smart phones". The Huffington Post. 6 August 2012. Retrieved 6 August 2012.
- Larry Magid (14 August 2012). "Magid on Tech: Lenovo's new X1 Carbon a top-notch ultrabook". Mercury News. Retrieved 15 August 2012.
- Nicholas Aaron Khoo (12 November 2012). "Flight test: Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon". CNET. Archived from the original on 2012-11-14. Retrieved 17 November 2012.
- Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon Touch review: one of our favorite Ultrabooks gets a touchscreen
- Null, Christopher (11 February 2013). "Touch Me I'm Carbon". Wired.
- "Five Generations Of The Lenovo X1 Carbon - AdamFowlerIT.com". AdamFowlerIT.com. 2017-04-07. Retrieved 2018-06-03.
- Bright, Peter (17 January 2014). "Stop trying to innovate keyboards. You're just making them worse". Ars Technica. Retrieved 4 January 2018.
- Spoonauer, Mark (4 March 2015). "Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon (2015) Review". Laptop Magazine. United States. Retrieved 10 March 2015.
- "CES Product Highlights". Retrieved 11 January 2016.
- "ThinkPad X1. By Us. By You". Retrieved 3 January 2017.
- Lenovo X1 Carbon laptop has a screw loose, poses a fire hazard
- Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon 5th Gen Laptop Recall
- "ThinkPad X1 Carbon (2018) Review: 6th Gen Workhorse, HDR Brilliance". HotHardware. HotHardware. 2018-03-22. Retrieved 2018-06-03.