Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Extreme review: The near-perfect laptop

These days, if you are buying a laptop, the two most important factors that help with the purchasing decision are portability and ergonomics. We live in the mobile age where the phone in your pocket can literally do everything your big and bulky laptop can. From watching movies to working on documents to browsing the web, the smartphone in your pocket won’t shed sweat when asked to do so. The laptop is only there in those situations when you need to get the heavy-duty workloads done in a familiar interface.

Therefore, it has become difficult for laptop manufacturers to justify their product in comparison with a more portable smart device. Lenovo, however, has been making a case for laptops with its ThinkPad series of laptops. A ThinkPad laptop is the most productive laptop you can buy and you can easily see these laptops acting as the workhorse for businessmen who want a reliable laptop. Lenovo has expanded the ThinkPad series over the years and you can get one customised for yourself.

However, these laptops are kind of restricted in their performance capabilities and Lenovo has now done a new ThinkPad that goes all-out on giving you the ultimate laptop experience. It’s called the ThinkPad X1 Extreme and it starts at Rs 1,76,900. If you want the extreme experience, you can spend up to Rs 3,05,891 and get the best that Lenovo has to offer – a 4K HDR screen, 512GB SSD and the fastest 8th Gen Intel Core i7 processor. Does it then offer the ultimate laptop experience? I had it with me for a couple of days and the X1 Extreme impressed me highly.

ThinkPads get the ergonomics just perfectly

Lenovo’s ThinkPads are known to offer the best industrial designs on a laptop. These laptops are designed to work and whichever variant you buy, this practicality is ensured. Nothing changes with the ThinkPad X1 Extreme – despite having a standard 15.6-inch display size, the laptop is quite slim. And at 1.8Kg, it is quite light as well – I had this in my backpack for 10 days and never was I bothered by its presence.

Like all ThinkPads, the X1 Extreme also gets the signature soft-touch surface with a rubberized feel. The chassis is made out of reinforced carbon fiber and aluminium, which offers strength and lightness at the same time. While this feels nice to touch and enhances the grip, it also retains smudges and dust easily. But if you keep the laptop clean, then X1 Extreme looks stealthy and on an office desk, wouldn’t even draw attention to itself. It looks and feels very much like a normal laptop and that’s something ThinkPads are very good at achieving.

Once you open the lid, you will be greeted by the same stealthy matte black interior with a glossy display. The glossy display is standard with 4K touchscreen and it does get reflective outdoors. The keyboard deck gets the same soft-touch rubberized finish having a large trackpad with a triple-button arrangement. The fingerprint sensor lies to the extreme right, which I feel is a weird positioning. However, a ThinkPad’s best feature is its keyboard and it sits right on the centre with enough palm rest areas around it to aid comfortable typing. The familiar ThinkPad precision pointer also stays in the middle of the keyboard — useful when working on presentations.

Overall, the ThinkPad X1 Extreme looks stealthy and the understated yet elegant design makes it perfect for someone who wants a serious workhorse. Next to a jazzy gaming laptop, this looks so modern.

ThinkPad X1 Extreme is wolf in a sheep’s clothing

The understated design may give out an impression of just another business laptop but the X1 Extreme delivers performance in heaps that you don’t expect from a laptop of this genre.

Let’s start with the display – this is simply magnificent. Business laptops usually limit to a Full HD screen but the X1 Extreme goes a step further and offers a 4K HDR display with touch input. Right from the moment when you start, the display looks lively with its extremely vibrant colours and high brightness levels. The contrast levels are so high that at times it feels like an OLED panel. With a screen this vibrant, even working on a Word document seems so interesting – watching movies or binging on YouTube feels like a completely different experience. Now, this is an optional display that costs an additional approximate sum of Rs 45,000 but the experience it delivers is so amazing that it feels completely worthy.

To back up this extreme display, Lenovo has packed in punchy specifications. In the top-end variant, you get a 2.2Ghz 8th Gen Intel Core i7-8750H processor with vPro technology built-in. It comes with 16GB RAM and 512GB PCIe SSD storage. To handle the graphics, Lenovo has stuffed in an NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050-Ti Max-Q GPU with 4GB VRAM. And as usual, there’s Windows 10 onboard to look after the errands.

With top-end specifications like these, a laptop is bound to perform flawlessly. Multitasking with several applications and a few tabs opened in the web browser is not an issue for…

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