Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon (2015) review

This high-end business Ultrabook struggles to sell its price tag

Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon (2015) review

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In 2014, Lenovo was carving a new identity for the X1 Carbon that differentiated it from other business laptops. With this latest model, Lenovo seems to be taking a step back, retreating to a traditional styling that enterprise users might be more comfortable with.

That said, the laptop has seen a fair share of improvements. Thanks to a new Broadwell processor, the X1 Carbon's performance is even better, while battery life has been extended by another hour.

We liked

If you're looking for a no-nonsense Ultrabook that's lighter than your everyday mobile workstation, then the Lenovo X1 Carbon is it.

It's a reliable business notebook with a best-in-the-industry keyboard and trackpad, plus the impeccable build quality of the machine earns it some big marks.

We disliked

In the same breath, I also have to say the Lenovo X1 Carbon has two major flaws, including screen glare. What's more, this machine's last in class battery life of four to six hours won't get you through a day's worth of off site work before running back to the safety of an outlet. Both drawbacks will (and probably should) discourage users from taking out this machine outside of an ideal office environment for too long.

Final verdict

There's no question that the X1 Carbon is an acceptable, reliable work machine. Lenovo got a lot of things right with its latest business Ultrabook: excellent performance, enough inputs and a great build quality.

There are a few imperfections, though, what with the reflective anti-glare coating and the comparatively short battery life. This laptop's greatest problem, however, isn't clear until you look at what the competition is serving up.

Priced at $2,100 (about £1,929, AU$2,599), the Lenovo X1 Carbon is considerably more expensive than both the 13-inch MacBook Pro and Dell XPS 13 at similar configurations. And yet both of these machines offer more in the way of screen resolution and battery life, making for a better value that's tough to refute.

The Lenovo X1 Carbon, outfitted with a top end processor, outpaces both Apple and Dell's thin laptop offerings. But the difference in benchmark scores isn't large enough to warrant paying an additional 300 to 600 bucks for this premium business Ultrabook.

Kevin Lee

Kevin Lee was a former computing reporter at TechRadar. Kevin is now the SEO Updates Editor at IGN based in New York. He handles all of the best of tech buying guides while also dipping his hand in the entertainment and games evergreen content. Kevin has over eight years of experience in the tech and games publications with previous bylines at Polygon, PC World, and more. Outside of work, Kevin is major movie buff of cult and bad films. He also regularly plays flight & space sim and racing games. IRL he's a fan of archery, axe throwing, and board games.