Thinkpad x1 carbon 5th (2017) Owner's Lounge

Discussion in 'Lenovo' started by hunterdt, Feb 17, 2017.

  1. risen

    risen Notebook Enthusiast

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    My Thinkapd X1 Carbon 2017 just arrived yesterday!! I absolutely love it. Here's why. I'd like to share some of my observations since I found it so hard to come across user reviews or many extensive reviews of the Thinkpad X1 Carbon 5th Gen when I was doing my research. I can also respond to some of the feedback provided in the reviews I came across online.

    The look, feel and weight of this laptop will blow you away as soon as you take it out of its packaging. I haven''t come across any build quality issues, no creaky spots like some reviews mentioned. Both me and boyfriend felt that the X1 Carbon felt more premium than his macbook air (which is 4 years old to be honest), but it will also stand the test against the new macbook, several of which I have handled in the Apple store when I was researching which laptop to get.

    All the touchpad issues I had read about in reviews (freezing intermittently and requiring a restart, then freezing again) is an absolute non-issue with mine. Guess they fixed it after the first batch of problems. Also, the glass touchpad makes scrolling feel exacly like gliding on a glass surface, it's comparable to the macbook air's touchpad in terms of scrolling through webpages (maybe the zoom feature could be improved).

    The keyboard....I was really nervous coming from my Thinkpad X220 that i would hate the chiclet keyboard. But to me chiclet = Apple's shallow key travel (i just can't stand typing on my boyfriend's macbook air). But I am pleasantly surprised to say that the feedback/pressue of the keys has just the right amount of snap and spring to them. The travel is probably a couple of millimetre less than the X220 old style keyboard, and yes... I am saying this too, I actually think the new keyboard has a better feel to it (i always nod my head in disbelief when reviewers said this but I have to give them this one).

    Fan noise. Haven't noticed at all when it was on battery yesterday or today even when installing programmes or working with large spreadsheets. When charging, I noticed the fan coming on and off, and the fan noise is audible in the middle of the night if your sitting in front of it (not to the person next to you). I didn't notice any fan noise at work when it was on charging yesterday maybe because the office was noisy, or it could be that the fan never came on, can't be sure.

    Battery life: is amazing for a 14 inch laptop. My X220 on a 6 cell battery died after 3 and a half hours even on a new battery. I did an hour on battery last night, and still had 12.5 hours left. I left the charger at home today and worked on the new laptop from the office, it lasted me from 8:30 am to 9 pm (that's a bit more than 12 hours!) and the battery guage still had 3 hours left to go!!! I was mostly on Word writing a report, on Excel working with large spreadsheets, surfing web pages, and downloading a lot of software like antivirus, chrome and some other software. Brightness was at 50%

    Brightness: Ok coming from an X220 which was notorious for its dim screens, i have to say my X1 Carbon did a fantastic job allowing me to work on 50% brightness throughout the day in an office that is solely lit by natural light in the daytime. I could never achieve this on the X220 and probably why the battery on the X220 gave out earlier than it should have.

    Backlit keyboard - I'm old school, I prefer the thinklight. You could read from a book/or look at your notes on paper while also typing on the X220 which had a thinklight. The backlit keyboard simply illuminates the keys and doesn't act as a night lamp (so now I may need to invest in one). I do agree with the reviews that you can see a significant amount of backlight bleed from underneath the keys of the X1 Carbon if you are looking at it from an angle. This could hurt the eyes when you are looking up to the keyboard at an angle (like lying in bed rather than sitting at a desk looking down onto the keyboard). But I'm not staring directly at the backlit keys for any length of time as my attention is on the screen, so your eyes focus elsewhere. However, I don't necessarily agree with reviews that say the lowest setting on the backlight is too dim. When you try it at night, the lowest setting is more gentle on my eyes than the second higher setting. You can see the keys properly, and you don't need to be a touch typist either to somehow get by on the lowest setting.

    SSD - The wonders of SSD! I have a PCIe-NVMe. I have never used an SSD before. My trusty X220 had a spinning 5400 rpm HDD. Yes, it was slow. I had to wait for around for the computer to wake from sleep. As I started working on larger spreadsheets the waiting times grew. The SSD doesn't choke, not once today. I was just happy that I didn't have to spend an extra hour at the office (on top of the 12 hours I did already) waiting around for the spreadsheet to compute!

    720p webcam - The quality of the webcam is a 100 times better than my x220 so I am pleased, although it's not as good as the macbook air. But the camera still manages to make you look presentable, and not a grainy version of yourself.

    As for my configuration, I have the base model which is a Core i5 7200u Processor, an FHD sceen (1920x1080) which is just gorgeous and the colours POP, 256 PCIe NVMe SSD, 8 GB RAM and the fingerprint reader along with a 720p webcam. There is no WWAN or IR facial recognition on the base model. It is completely adeqaute for my purposes ... office work, email, Excel spreadsheets, Word docs and a lot tabs open in Firefox. I generally try to use Chrome when I am plugged in as it's a battery hogger. Although I did read in a review, that Chrome had little to no effect on the battery life of the X1 Carbon 5th Gen but I can't vouch for it's accuracy as I haven't tested it on this laptop.

    I would like to mention on a parting note that unlike some of the reviews confusingly lead you to believe .. the base model X1C5 does indeed come with ethernet conection. But this is a small proprietary ethernet connector developed by Lenovo to fit in to the body of the slimmed down X1 Carbon 5th Gen. They throw in the dongle for the proprietary to standard ethernet connector for free in your order which is a blessing! The base model comes with a 720p webcam but does not have the IR facial recognition (that is signing in with Windows Hello facial recognition). However, I think I prefer the fingerprint reader on the base model which is very fast and speedy. Also, when placing the order I orderd an HDMI to VGA connector for £12!! I go to a lot of conferences to present and 80% are stuck with VGA, and 10% have HDMI. But I have rarely seen anything else more sophisticated like thunderbolt connectivity for presentations even in large IT company conference rooms. What I'm really most grateful to Lenovo for is that they make up for taking away the necessary ports by keeping the purchase price of these dongles really cheap, or even free. Something I have not been able to forgive Apple for when I had to head over to buy their prohibitively expensive USB to Lightning connector to connect my new iphone to the home theatre (and the dongle didn't even support video, only audio output). And finally, the base model came with 3 years' onsite warranty included in the price (I ordered from the UK). That was an added bonus. I found a coupon online that gave me a good additional discount.. So I spent nowhere near the humungous amounts that are being bandied abbout in reviews. In total, I spent probably the same for the X1 Carbon as I did for my X220 6 years ago! And last but not the least, you will thank yourself that you got a machine that has proper ports and don't skimp on them (such as the macbook pro 13" stuck with only one USB-C port). I popped over to the store across the road to buy a usb stick and wil stick it into the USB 3.0 of the X1C5 to create a recovery disk. Easy! I don't have to take time off from my busy life to plan a trip to the Apple Store.

    Just handling this laptop over the last two days, and how it has surfed breezily though everything I put it through reminds me of my trustee companion, the Thinkpad X220i (the base model again) in 2011 that never let me down and still runs like a dream after 6 years. It reminds me of my beloved second hand Thinkpad R52, a true blue IBM laptop all of 7 pounds that hardly left my desk but got me through my toughest days with school exams, dissertation and job search, lasting me 6 years. I still have it and it still works (great for sending an email or two or typing out long word documents). Thinkpads have been a part of my life ever since I have been independent and made my life in a foreign country with no cushion to speak of. So over the years too I have come to trust their quality and I have never been let down in my last 12 years as a Thinkpad user. I waited 5 years to get the X1 Carbon as it wasn't right for me back in 2012. But the 5th Gen with it's smaller footprint (a 14" inch screen in a 13" bezel as the famous saying goes) is the perfect fit for me and the reason I decided to upgrade from the X220 as the HD screen was slightly too limited for me. I plan to use my X1C5 for the next 6 years atleast if not more as the screen size vs the footprint of the laptop hits the sweet spot for me!
     
    Last edited: Jun 28, 2017
    heisenberg420, Saaaaa, rozyk and 3 others like this.
  2. rozyk

    rozyk Newbie

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    Is there anywhere a review of the WQHD display?
     
  3. risen

    risen Notebook Enthusiast

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    I haven't really seen any review of that specific screen anywhere, sorry.
     
  4. rozyk

    rozyk Newbie

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    Do you know if it's possible to mount a second ssd?
     
  5. DanielNTX

    DanielNTX Notebook Consultant

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    Supposedly no. The WWAN slot is only USB and has no SATA connection.
     
    risen likes this.
  6. Thors.Hammer

    Thors.Hammer Notebook Enthusiast

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    But do you like it? :)

    I like mine too. Waited for 5 generations. It was a long wait.
     
  7. risen

    risen Notebook Enthusiast

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    Ok, less than a week of using it. The X1C5 was worth the looong 5 year wait. I really like it :)
     
    Thors.Hammer and huntnyc like this.
  8. Gracy123

    Gracy123 Agrees to disagree

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    Seriously? Never imagined anyone can be unhappy about the back-lit keyboard in comparison to that silly LED torch which seemed like a "there I fixed it" solution :D

    Having had my Vaio with back-lit keyboard for about 7 years in parallel with a 2 years newer T420 with a torch, I could never understand how anyone could release such a "misunderstanding" to the market :D

    So happy to finally have a decent solution for typing in the dark.
     
    galaxyge likes this.
  9. risen

    risen Notebook Enthusiast

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    I loved the 'torch' :D. Functioned perfectly well as a late night study lamp to go back and forth between my notes and typing. The backlight, I have to admit, looks so futuristic! I'm not complaining haha.
    Congratluations by the way on your X1C5!
     
    huntnyc likes this.
  10. ZaZ

    ZaZ Super Model Super Moderator

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    Having used both I thought the non-backlit keyboards felt better and I prefer the ThinkLight too.
     
    huntnyc likes this.
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