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Lenovo thinkpad helix touchscreen 2 in 1 review

lenovo thinkpad helix touchscreen 2 in 1 review

This excellent Windows 8 tablet/ultrabook hybrid has a well-designed keyboard docking mechanism, typically solid build quality and a. Take away the keyboard dock, and the Helix looks sort of like the ThinkPad Tablet 2, which in turn looks like any recent ThinkPad. Clearly, the. Lenovo's ThinkPad Helix offers a versatile convertible design, full HD touch screen and impressive battery life, but costs a pretty penny. FORMAT FLASH TO FAT32 Hi bankbatov, Thank more carefully. The VDA software very simple design on the computer code that anyone can inspect, modify. But yours is. Limiting the general applicability of the other provisions of.

We use cookies and other tracking technologies to improve your browsing experience on our site, show personalized content and targeted ads, analyze site traffic, and understand where our audiences come from. To learn more or opt-out, read our Cookie Policy. CES is mostly just one hellacious blur. Through all the chaos, the Lenovo ThinkPad Helix somehow stood out. Late or not, the Helix might still have a chance.

For starters, the Helix is chunky. Both Helix halves are matte black with red accents, made of the same vaguely rubbery carbon fiber as the ThinkPad Carbon X1. It connects in six places, a mix of steadying holes and connecting ports. You have to line the tablet up just so, and use two supports to guide it down onto the dock.

The hinge does at least give the Helix some Yoga-like flexibility. You can put the tablet in the dock in either direction, so you can have the screen facing away from you in a sort of presentation mode. Add all that to the fact that you can just press an awkwardly extruding button on the left side and detach the tablet from the base, and the Helix is probably the most versatile Lenovo ultrabook yet.

There are design problems everywhere, though, and it all starts with the hinge. From the X1 Carbon to the Yoga 13 , Lenovo clearly knows how to build simple, minimal, classy laptops, and yet from the same company comes this mess of exposed screws, awkwardly located rubber feet, and a seam on the base I could pretty easily pry apart. The whole laptop is a mish-mash of odd angles and asymmetrical designs, which feels particularly odd coming from Lenovo.

The Viewing angles are great, colors are accurate, touch response is excellent, and everything is tack-sharp. But it runs into some of the same issues as the Sony VAIO Pro , where pixel density actually becomes a problem — cramming this many pixels into such a small space makes almost everything too small, from webpages to app icons. Anything from the Windows Store looks fine, but everything else scales wrong.

And it does help: it has the same hovering preview features as the Surface Pro, and makes finding tiny touch targets much easier. The upside, of course, is that p video looks pretty great on the device. This problem could be a deal-breaker for someone who needs to make presentations on the road. I have a few other quibbles as well: Although the Helix maintains the sub That resolution on an I sometimes found myself squinting, and using the stylus to select radio buttons fingertips being too blunt an instrument was generally a hit-or-miss affair.

The keyboard dock adds a pair of USB 3. The ThinkPad Helix deserves kudos for its innovative design, and a business user in search of a laptop-tablet convertible with good performance might find the high price tag palatable. And if money is no object, you can upgrade to a faster processor, add more solid-state storage capacity, and tack on on the aforementioned mobile-broadband feature. Pros Can operate as a touchscreen notebook or a Windows 8 tablet Solid-state drive speeds up frequently performed operations Dual-battery arrangement delivers up to 6.

Cons Subpar audio High-res screen can make small type difficult to read Pricey considering its

Lenovo thinkpad helix touchscreen 2 in 1 review giver lamp lenovo thinkpad helix touchscreen 2 in 1 review

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Click to Enlarge It seems that with every detachable tablet comes a new way of connecting it to its base, and the Helix is no different. When pushed, a small red tab at the bottom left corner of the base lets you remove the tablet from the keyboard dock.

This reveals a rather complex-looking setup: A plastic flap protects the docking mechanism, which includes two large metal tabs, two docking connectors, and a small fan array which pulls air through the tablet. By comparison, the Samsung T has a much simpler connector. Our biggest complaint about the ThinkPad Helix' design is that the display can't be angled back very far in clamshell mode.

However, the Helix's dock is made in such a way that users can connect the tablet so that the screen is facing the keyboard, or the other way around. Like the Samsung T, the Helix's base has a built-in battery that adds to its overall weight. Combined, the ThinkPad Helix weighs 3. Click to Enlarge At While watching a p trailer for the sci-fi flick "Elysium," the space colony that serves as the titular setting for the film looked beautiful.

An aerial shot of the colony awash with trees provided a spectacular amount of detail. Colors were equally impressive, with the browns and greys of post-apocalyptic Earth clashing nicely with the greens and blues of Elysium. The display's viewing angles were excellent, allowing us to see images on the screen while sitting to the far left or far right of the system. At lux, the Helix' IPS display is also extremely bright, making it easy to view even in sunlight.

That's much better than the ultraportable notebook category average of lux, as well as the tablet average of lux. Two stereo speakers on the Helix' bottom edge provided enough audio power to fill a small room. Audio quality on the high end of the spectrum was crisp and clear, though bass hits were nearly imperceptible.

While listening to Kanye West's "On Sight," the rapper's sonorous voice came through with punch, but beats were difficult to make out. Click to Enlarge Thanks to its detachable display, the Helix can be used as either a traditional notebook or tablet. With support for finger gestures, the Helix' display proved accurate and responsive during our testing.

Windows 8's tile interface, which was made specifically for touch screen devices, was easy to navigate. However, the sharp display on the Helix made items difficult to target in desktop mode. We were impressed with the Helix' ability recognize our handwriting using the included Wacom stylus. For the most part, whether writing in cursive or printing sentences, the tablet picked up exactly what we wrote without issue. On the Ten Thumbs Typing Test, we hit an average typing speed of 70 words per minute with a 2 percent error rate.

That's just about our average for a notebook of this size. We also appreciated Lenovo's decision to offer a Function Lock feature, which lets you toggle between reversing the function keys. Typing in our lap didn't feel as comfortable as typing on a desk with this convertible.

That's because the Helix is top heavy; the system tipped backward slightly before we placed our wrists on the palm rest. However, to maximize space, the three buttons that normally lie between the spacebar and touchpad have now been integrated into the top of the touchpad itself. Fortunately, these buttons worked well. Measuring 3. Multitouch gestures such as pinch-to-zoom and rotate were spot on, and click feedback was satisfyingly responsive.

Windows 8 gestures, such as swiping in to bring up the Charms menu and switching between apps, were equally responsive. The dual fans in the Helix' dock were only somewhat effective at keeping the device cool. After streaming a minute Hulu video, the notebook's touchpad reached just 77 degrees Fahrenheit and the keyboard reached Both of these measurements are well below our comfortability threshold.

The tablet itself, however, was a different story. We measured degrees in the middle of the back. The hottest point was near the ThinkPad logo on the tablet's backside, which reached a somewhat disturbing degrees. Click to Enlarge Lenovo chose to go relatively light on the ports with the Helix. The tablet portion of the device includes a single USB 2. All the ports are on the tablet's bottom edge, making them inaccessible when the tablet is connected to the keyboard dock. The keyboard includes two USB 3.

While space is limited, we would have liked an SD Card or microSD Card Slot and Ethernet port, both of which would prove extremely useful for business users. The Helix has a 2-megapixel front-facing camera and a 5-megapixel rear-facing shooter.

In a well-lit room, the front camera captured images that were very detailed and captured colors accurately. However, there was a persistent graininess that became more pronounced in darker conditions. The rear camera produced sharp images, though bright spots were blown out and the autofocus regularly caused the camera to refocus on the same subject several times.

At the same time, there's still plenty of space between the individual buttons and all of the major keys are still amply sized, a feat considering this is a petite inch machine we're dealing with. Really, if anything's been shrunken down, it's the function keys where you can control things like volume and screen brightness.

Seems like a fair trade to us. Equally important, the underlying panel is sturdy enough to stand up to even the most furious of typists. The buttons also offer a good deal of travel, especially compared to Ultrabooks and standalone keyboard docks for tablets. No, these buttons might not feel as pillowy as your old T-series notebook, but they weren't meant to either. The Helix is one of the first ThinkPads to ship with Lenovo's redesigned touchpad, which ditches physical buttons in favor of a giant, flush surface with different touch zones.

All told, it's 20 percent larger than previous generations, according to Lenovo, thanks to the freed-up space where the buttons used to be. Not only are there no discrete left- and right-click buttons anymore, but the ones meant to accompany the TrackPoint are also hidden. There's no scroll strip to use with the tracking stick anymore either; instead, there's just a series of raised bumps at the top of the trackpad, just below the space bar.

For any of the ThinkPad fanboys who've been waiting months for the Helix to ship, this change will be a big one. An alarming one, even. Lenovo says it has a good reason: that Windows 8 laptops deserve larger trackpads for carrying out all those native touch gestures, like swiping in from the top to expose app settings.

That, and there are plenty of potential ThinkPad customers who just don't "get" the idea of a TrackPoint, much less the buttons that go with it. So here we are, with a spacious touchpad that would look right at home on any other notebook, but not necessarily a ThinkPad.

You can whine that it's unfamiliar, or that Lenovo possibly caved to the wrong kind of customer. You might be right. But in fact, it works just fine -- once you master the learning curve, anyway. At the very beginning of our testing period, there were a few times when I managed to hit a narrow dead zone in the middle of the trackpad, a place where neither right nor left clicks registered. With a little more hands-on time, though, that became a moot point; now, I always nail right and left clicks on my first try.

Somehow, then, it's possible to re-train your fingers to hit the right places, not unlike the way you adjust to a new keyboard. Practice makes perfect, not that that makes a good marketing tagline for Lenovo.

Mind you, the trackpad isn't perfect, but we're having trouble blaming it on the redesign. For instance, if you're tracking the cursor with one finger, it doesn't always go where you want it to, but that's true of many Windows laptops, regardless of who the PC maker is or who supplied the touchpad. In any event, more complex gestures like two-finger scrolling, pinch-to-zoom and all the Windows 8-specific shortcuts swiping for the Charms Bar, etc.

Say what you will about the funky keyboard dock and newfangled trackpad: the display is flawless. For this, its flagship Windows 8 hybrid for businesses, Lenovo chose an Particularly with the brightness cranked all the way up, the viewing angles are solid, both on the vertical and horizontal axes. Even in an office with both harsh overhead lighting and a good deal of natural light, the screen showed minimal reflections, despite the fact that it's not actually an anti-glare screen.

Also, aside from easy readability, we found that colors and contrast stayed the same even as we viewed the screen from odd angles, perhaps with the laptop in a lap, or with the tablet off to our sides. That latter scenario was of particular importance to us, as we occasionally used the docked Helix as a sort of second screen, a place where we could browse the internet or load video without disrupting anything on our primary PC. If that setup sounds appealing to you, too, be glad you won't have to suffer any washed-out colors with the Helix sitting in your peripheral vision.

The sound quality, meanwhile, is actually decent in the sense that there isn't a huge rise in distortion at higher volumes. Kanye's "I Am a God" and Eric Clapton's electric guitar didn't sound much worse at level than they did at Then again, the volume doesn't get very loud, though it should still be fine for a conference call in a quiet space.

Failing low-noise surroundings, you could always pair it with a speaker, we suppose. In recent weeks, we've been taking various PC makers to task for pushing systems into the market with last-gen Ivy Bridge processors. In the case of the Helix, though, Lenovo might have an excuse: while Intel is shipping Haswell chips for consumer systems, it hasn't yet released its business-grade processors. So, unless Lenovo wanted to delay the Helix even further until the fall, it had to make do with Ivy Bridge.

If you can wait that long, Lenovo says the Helix will get Haswell As it is, the 1. In general, we had no problem juggling different apps, even after we lost count of how many we had open. As always, too, browsing in Internet Explorer felt fast with little to no tiling. Our main concern is with the startup time: it routinely took us 20 seconds or so to boot into the Start Screen. Heck, it takes about four seconds just for the Lenovo logo to appear onscreen early in the boot process.

Lenovo claims the Helix can last up to six hours on a charge with just the tablet, and up to 10 when you add the keyboard dock. As is usually the case, we got less than that on both counts, just because our battery life test video looping with WiFi on is particularly grueling. In any event, we got five hours and seven minutes with the tablet alone, which isn't bad when you consider the Surface Pro didn't even make it to four hours in the same test. And again, it's a taxing test, so you can probably squeeze out more than five hours if you're a little more conservative with your brightness settings than we were.

With the dock attached, battery life reached seven hours and 27 minutes, which is more than any Core i5 Ivy Bridge tablet could last on its own. The k eywords being "Ivy Bridge" -- who knows what Haswell will do for tablets like these. Fortunately, Lenovo mostly makes good on that promise. There's also Lenovo Companion, but we recommend you not click on it. Maybe even remove the tile from your Start Screen.

What it is, basically, is a portal with shortcuts for Lenovo's blogs and its YouTube channel. You'll also find offers for things like Zinio's magazine store and Norton Internet Security. Sort of a waste of space if you ask us.

All of the various Helix configurations come standard with one year of coverage, though extended warranties as long as five years are available too. That comes with a Core i5 processor, though a different one than what's in our unit: an iU, with a base clock speed of 1. Go a step up, and you get the same specs, just with mobile broadband built in. Finally, going with a Core iU processor also means you get twice the RAM 8GB so that's something to consider when choosing which one to buy.

Again, those prices don't include any promotions Lenovo might happen to be running. The Helix falls into a growing category of inch touchscreen PCs that either have a detachable tablet or can be used in some sort of tablet mode. Now that Build has come and gone without any new Surface announcements, we're inclined to believe the existing Surface Pro will stick around for at least a little while longer. Like the Helix, that ships with an Ivy Bridge processor and rocks a similarly sized As we've established, the battery life there isn't as good as on the Helix, and you don't even have the option of a dock with a second battery built in.

The Touch and Type Cover keyboards do contribute to a lighter total weight, but they aren't as comfortable as the Helix's keyboard. Neither of those has a satisfactory touchpad, but then again, nor does the Helix, so they're even in that respect. In Lenovo's own camp, there's the Yoga 11S , which is essentially a smaller version of the Yoga We haven't tested this guy yet, so we unfortunately can't vouch for things like performance or battery life. Just in terms of form factor, it accomplishes many of the same things as the Helix, but it's clearly a consumer device, not a business machine.

When it comes out later this year, Dell's XPS 11 hybrid will be very similar to the Yoga 11S, and should compete against the Helix too, with a thin, light design and inch, 2, x 1, display. Until it comes out, though, the closest thing Dell has to offer is the XPS 12, which recently got refreshed with Haswell -- something the Helix doesn't have yet.

It's a bit heavier, even when you factor in the Helix's keyboard, and Lenovo's machine is definitely more comfortable to use as a tablet. But the XPS 12 has a comfortable keyboard and a reliable trackpad, to boot. So it really depends on whether you need a laptop first and a tablet second, or vice versa. But with Ivy Bridge processors, the battery life is pretty terrible, and the interior screen doesn't even support touch.

You might have been considering this one, but we'd suggest you skip it; the Lenovo Helix and Yoga both accomplish the whole screen-on-the-outside thing to much better effect. Now that we've breezed through all the major inch hybrids, we'd ask you to at least consider something with a more traditional form factor -- i. The keyboard isn't as comfy as the Helix's, though the trackpad is about on par. Even six months after it was originally announced, the ThinkPad Helix is the most innovative Windows 8 tablet hybrid we can think of.

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Lenovo Thinkpad Helix 2 Review - Core M Convertible

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That was a big change at the time, but now it's old hat. As on other recent ThinkPads, the Helix has a six-row layout, with chiclet-style, spill-resistant keys, each of which has a roomy U-shape design that makes it easy to strike the right one without looking. At the same time, there's still plenty of space between the individual buttons and all of the major keys are still amply sized, a feat considering this is a petite inch machine we're dealing with.

Really, if anything's been shrunken down, it's the function keys where you can control things like volume and screen brightness. Seems like a fair trade to us. Equally important, the underlying panel is sturdy enough to stand up to even the most furious of typists.

The buttons also offer a good deal of travel, especially compared to Ultrabooks and standalone keyboard docks for tablets. No, these buttons might not feel as pillowy as your old T-series notebook, but they weren't meant to either. The Helix is one of the first ThinkPads to ship with Lenovo's redesigned touchpad, which ditches physical buttons in favor of a giant, flush surface with different touch zones.

All told, it's 20 percent larger than previous generations, according to Lenovo, thanks to the freed-up space where the buttons used to be. Not only are there no discrete left- and right-click buttons anymore, but the ones meant to accompany the TrackPoint are also hidden. There's no scroll strip to use with the tracking stick anymore either; instead, there's just a series of raised bumps at the top of the trackpad, just below the space bar.

For any of the ThinkPad fanboys who've been waiting months for the Helix to ship, this change will be a big one. An alarming one, even. Lenovo says it has a good reason: that Windows 8 laptops deserve larger trackpads for carrying out all those native touch gestures, like swiping in from the top to expose app settings. That, and there are plenty of potential ThinkPad customers who just don't "get" the idea of a TrackPoint, much less the buttons that go with it.

So here we are, with a spacious touchpad that would look right at home on any other notebook, but not necessarily a ThinkPad. You can whine that it's unfamiliar, or that Lenovo possibly caved to the wrong kind of customer. You might be right. But in fact, it works just fine -- once you master the learning curve, anyway.

At the very beginning of our testing period, there were a few times when I managed to hit a narrow dead zone in the middle of the trackpad, a place where neither right nor left clicks registered. With a little more hands-on time, though, that became a moot point; now, I always nail right and left clicks on my first try. Somehow, then, it's possible to re-train your fingers to hit the right places, not unlike the way you adjust to a new keyboard. Practice makes perfect, not that that makes a good marketing tagline for Lenovo.

Mind you, the trackpad isn't perfect, but we're having trouble blaming it on the redesign. For instance, if you're tracking the cursor with one finger, it doesn't always go where you want it to, but that's true of many Windows laptops, regardless of who the PC maker is or who supplied the touchpad.

In any event, more complex gestures like two-finger scrolling, pinch-to-zoom and all the Windows 8-specific shortcuts swiping for the Charms Bar, etc. Say what you will about the funky keyboard dock and newfangled trackpad: the display is flawless.

For this, its flagship Windows 8 hybrid for businesses, Lenovo chose an Particularly with the brightness cranked all the way up, the viewing angles are solid, both on the vertical and horizontal axes. Even in an office with both harsh overhead lighting and a good deal of natural light, the screen showed minimal reflections, despite the fact that it's not actually an anti-glare screen.

Also, aside from easy readability, we found that colors and contrast stayed the same even as we viewed the screen from odd angles, perhaps with the laptop in a lap, or with the tablet off to our sides.

That latter scenario was of particular importance to us, as we occasionally used the docked Helix as a sort of second screen, a place where we could browse the internet or load video without disrupting anything on our primary PC. If that setup sounds appealing to you, too, be glad you won't have to suffer any washed-out colors with the Helix sitting in your peripheral vision.

The sound quality, meanwhile, is actually decent in the sense that there isn't a huge rise in distortion at higher volumes. Kanye's "I Am a God" and Eric Clapton's electric guitar didn't sound much worse at level than they did at Then again, the volume doesn't get very loud, though it should still be fine for a conference call in a quiet space. Failing low-noise surroundings, you could always pair it with a speaker, we suppose.

In recent weeks, we've been taking various PC makers to task for pushing systems into the market with last-gen Ivy Bridge processors. In the case of the Helix, though, Lenovo might have an excuse: while Intel is shipping Haswell chips for consumer systems, it hasn't yet released its business-grade processors. So, unless Lenovo wanted to delay the Helix even further until the fall, it had to make do with Ivy Bridge.

If you can wait that long, Lenovo says the Helix will get Haswell As it is, the 1. In general, we had no problem juggling different apps, even after we lost count of how many we had open. As always, too, browsing in Internet Explorer felt fast with little to no tiling. Our main concern is with the startup time: it routinely took us 20 seconds or so to boot into the Start Screen. Heck, it takes about four seconds just for the Lenovo logo to appear onscreen early in the boot process.

Lenovo claims the Helix can last up to six hours on a charge with just the tablet, and up to 10 when you add the keyboard dock. As is usually the case, we got less than that on both counts, just because our battery life test video looping with WiFi on is particularly grueling.

In any event, we got five hours and seven minutes with the tablet alone, which isn't bad when you consider the Surface Pro didn't even make it to four hours in the same test. And again, it's a taxing test, so you can probably squeeze out more than five hours if you're a little more conservative with your brightness settings than we were. With the dock attached, battery life reached seven hours and 27 minutes, which is more than any Core i5 Ivy Bridge tablet could last on its own.

The k eywords being "Ivy Bridge" -- who knows what Haswell will do for tablets like these. Fortunately, Lenovo mostly makes good on that promise. There's also Lenovo Companion, but we recommend you not click on it. Maybe even remove the tile from your Start Screen.

What it is, basically, is a portal with shortcuts for Lenovo's blogs and its YouTube channel. You'll also find offers for things like Zinio's magazine store and Norton Internet Security. Sort of a waste of space if you ask us. All of the various Helix configurations come standard with one year of coverage, though extended warranties as long as five years are available too. That comes with a Core i5 processor, though a different one than what's in our unit: an iU, with a base clock speed of 1.

Go a step up, and you get the same specs, just with mobile broadband built in. Finally, going with a Core iU processor also means you get twice the RAM 8GB so that's something to consider when choosing which one to buy. Again, those prices don't include any promotions Lenovo might happen to be running. The Helix falls into a growing category of inch touchscreen PCs that either have a detachable tablet or can be used in some sort of tablet mode.

Now that Build has come and gone without any new Surface announcements, we're inclined to believe the existing Surface Pro will stick around for at least a little while longer. Like the Helix, that ships with an Ivy Bridge processor and rocks a similarly sized As we've established, the battery life there isn't as good as on the Helix, and you don't even have the option of a dock with a second battery built in.

The Touch and Type Cover keyboards do contribute to a lighter total weight, but they aren't as comfortable as the Helix's keyboard. Neither of those has a satisfactory touchpad, but then again, nor does the Helix, so they're even in that respect. In Lenovo's own camp, there's the Yoga 11S , which is essentially a smaller version of the Yoga We haven't tested this guy yet, so we unfortunately can't vouch for things like performance or battery life.

Just in terms of form factor, it accomplishes many of the same things as the Helix, but it's clearly a consumer device, not a business machine. When it comes out later this year, Dell's XPS 11 hybrid will be very similar to the Yoga 11S, and should compete against the Helix too, with a thin, light design and inch, 2, x 1, display.

Until it comes out, though, the closest thing Dell has to offer is the XPS 12, which recently got refreshed with Haswell -- something the Helix doesn't have yet. It's a bit heavier, even when you factor in the Helix's keyboard, and Lenovo's machine is definitely more comfortable to use as a tablet. But the XPS 12 has a comfortable keyboard and a reliable trackpad, to boot. So it really depends on whether you need a laptop first and a tablet second, or vice versa.

But with Ivy Bridge processors, the battery life is pretty terrible, and the interior screen doesn't even support touch. You might have been considering this one, but we'd suggest you skip it; the Lenovo Helix and Yoga both accomplish the whole screen-on-the-outside thing to much better effect. Now that we've breezed through all the major inch hybrids, we'd ask you to at least consider something with a more traditional form factor -- i.

I tend to use the tablet in long flights to get work done using handwriting recognition and the use the full machine when at my destination using voice recognition. Despite what some reviews say, the build quality of this machine is excellent. The tabs that guide the connection of the keyboard dock and tablet are really good and make the docking easy.

Windows 8 be sure to update to 8. The biggest downside is that most settings are hidden deeper and are harder to find, making serious adjustments more time-consuming. Apparently some of this will be addressed in an upcoming update. Two things that I think could be improved. I think Lenovo could have squeezed a slightly larger screen in this form factor and dimensions -- less edge more screen.

That would be nice. The resolution is phenomenal, but the screen is small. There is no charging indicator, so unless you turn on the machine, you do not know that it is fully charged. There are nice screen implementations of some of the standard hardware notices like caps lock, etc.

The keyboard is great and the interesting reversal of the Fn key function may actually be useful. On most laptops and ultrabooks I have seen, you push the Fn key to activate the special features. On this machine you just press the key for the special features and use the Fn key to get F1, F2, etc.

There are some really useful special functions. One that brings up the applications screen reverse of the Windows key. When using the keyboard instead of touch, these are quite useful. The two items above made me dock this machine one star, but I think it is one of the best 2-in-1s out there for doing serious work. Top critical review. Reviewed in the United States on March 9, Once you get it to work ok it does what it is advertised to do.

Nevertheless note the following: a the Tablet mine at least looses communication with the keyboard from time to time, until you download a software update that you have to carefully search for -not that easily found-. There are a few blogs about this so I think this is a fairly recurrent problem, it only requires securing the connector properly a task that requires opening the tablet which I was not about to do.

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Mostly a windows 8 problem, but it takes a long time for Lenovo technical support folk to get to that conclusion. I waited several months to review my Helix and although I haven't used it extensively I feel I've used it enough to be able to review it. I purchased it based on the numerous Amazon reviews from users with more advanced computer usage experience than I have that purchased it and use it for more advanced purposes than I do. I wanted a mobile laptop that had an active digital stylus, good battery life and was capable of performing on par with my i7 Dell XPS 17" laptop but would be far more mobile.

The Helix fills the bill on all of those accounts. Before purchasing it although I had considered it prior to its introduction I thought I wanted one with a Haswell 4th generation CPU because of the better battery life. The other factor that influenced my purchase was the price.

I also purchased the Lenovo carrying case from Amazon and am very pleased with it. Getting on to the Helix itself, it is a very high quality piece of machinery. The keyboard is the best I've ever used and every time I use it it reinforces the overall exceptional quality of this piece. I've upgraded to Windows 8. Mine was built in January and because the upgrade process involves upgrading other programs both Intel pre-installed among others and common user installed ones like Adobe Reader it is an involved process.

Also, you have to purchase the ethernet to USB 3 adapter because Lenovo states the 8. Why Lenovo is shipping new builds with Windows 8 Pro instead of 8. This includes problems with drivers that are pre-installed. So be prepared to pay extra when you encounter a problem that requires tech support because most issues will not be hardware related. The problem is no such unit to the best of my knowledge currently exists that has all the same features including the active digital stylus and mini DisplayPort with a detachable screen.

You can't even use the active digital stylus with it but you can use it in the free Adobe Reader app. Why Lenovo would chose to pre-install a PDF app trial that is incapable of using the active digital stylus makes no sense. Lenovo made a mistake with this and you have to learn enough about it to figure out they made a mistake, a waste of your time. After becoming somewhat familiar with it I do like the touchscreen especially in a mobile environment.

I think many will exclude it from consideration because of the 3rd rather than the 4th generation CPU and that's a big mistake. There are numerous internet reviews of the Haswell 4th generation CPU that state performance wise it is not as capable as the 3rd generation because of the reduced power consumption which is supposedly the biggest advantage the 4th gen CPU has over the 3rd.

The fact of the matter for battery life is because the Helix has two batteries it has a considerably longer battery life hours longer than any comparable 4th generation CPU hybrid laptop I am aware of. The other 4th gen advantage is the better Intel integrated graphics card and because I don't have any real hands on experience with a 4th gen CPU unit I can't comment on that.

The biggest Helix advantage is the Lenovo keyboard, there is absolutely no comparison with either of the Surface Pro keyboards, the Lenovo is far superior hands down. Don't make the mistake I almost made of excluding it because it uses a 3rd gen CPU instead of Haswell because of Haswell's reduced power consumption. You could easily end up with a Haswell model that has considerably less battery life than the Helix for comparable money.

Oh, and a couple more things I'd like to comment on that are brought up in other reviews: 1 this is a true laptop for your lap, I use it without any fear of it tipping over in my lap 2 a portion of the back of the screen does run warm but never to hot to comfortably touch. A few glitches, might be W8 start button on desktop; no love for the worthless mousepad. Click hold down while dragging with 2d finger sucks.

Mouse moves when clicking mousepad. Otherwise this laptop pleases me. I don't have to choose which program to run, I can run multiple activities, music, a game with 3D graphics, WE, eg simultaneously. The screen images are clear and sharp. Because the screen is upright overheating is not a problem.

WiFi is working just fine. Nice idea with the way you can flip the monitor around, however this construction means that the computer is top heavy. If you sit it on your lap it will tilt and fall over backwards. Additionally the hinge area has a very interesting construction which means that there's a flap hiding a couple of cooling fans on the hinge and unless you're paying attention you can potentially damage what the monitor latches on to. Plus, for an 11" computer, it's pretty heavy.

I love the portability and the power of this machine. And I can - but only for a few seconds after removing the pen from its silo. The touchscreen suddenly stops to work, and all my gesture commands stop working - not only on OneNote, but for all other Windows operations.

I have tried several tips from forums, but without success. It's pretty frustating. I'm not going to go in depth because most reviews on here are really solid and cover the laptop very well.

Lenovo thinkpad helix touchscreen 2 in 1 review the hi

Lenovo ThinkPad Helix in 2019: Still a Good 2 in 1?

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