Category Archives: Lenovo

new art tablets

Acer, Lenovo launch new art tablets for Fall 2016

New Lenovo, Acer art tablet offerings for Fall 2016

new art tablets

Create on the Lenovo Miix 510 in your private art studio

Active pens are becoming pretty much de rigueur these days, since the technology has become less expensive, and hey, it’s a nice option for everyone. This Fall 2016, Lenovo and Acer showcased several new art tablets at Berlin’s IFA tech show.

These have pens (sometimes included, sometimes not), pressure sensitivity, palm rejection, and draw-on screens. These offerings are all draw-on-screen with those features; the Lenovo Yoga Book is covered in this post and lets you draw on a non-screen tablet.

Acer unveiled its Spin line of 2-in-1s at the show. The spotlight is on the lightweight 14″ Spin 7 convertible notebook, but as the Spin 7 lacks drawing features such as support for an active pen, artists will be more interested in its siblings, the 13.3″ Spin 5 and the Spin 1, which comes in 11.6 and 13.3″ options.

Both the Spin 5 and the Spin 1 will feature support for the Acer Active Pen, which will be sold separately. The Acer Active Pen supports Windows Ink. All run Windows 10. The Acer Active Pen Stylus, as it has been called in previous Acers, uses a Synaptics digitizer.

The Spins, true to their name, will turn on a dual-torque, 360-degree hinge. They will have a blue light filter to ease eyestrain, and Color Intelligence, which maximizes color saturation.

Acer Spin 5 features

The Spin 5 has up to a 7th-generation Intel processor,  a full HD IPS screen, up to 16GB DDR4 memory, and up to 512 SSD storage. Battery life will last up to 10 hours. It will have a textured, fabric-like finish to make it harder to drop.

Acer Spin 1 – affordable and comes in two sizes

Acer calls the Spin 1 ideal for “students or as a second computer,” meaning its performance will be less than speedy. Its two screen sizes are 13″ or 11.6″ HD IPS, and it will carry Intel Celeron or Pentium processors and antimicrobial Gorilla Glass to keep out those classroom germs.

The Spin 1 will also support the optional Acer Active Pen and Windows Ink, and will be very affordable, which is rare in a pressure-sensitive tablet. It could be a decent-sized portable digital sketchbook that won’t break the bank.

You can see the Acers on the Acer site.

Lenovo Miix 510 has up to 1TB storage

lenovo miix 510 new art tablets

Plug your phone into the Miix.

Lenovo launched no less than four 2-in-1s at the show. The attention-getter is the Lenovo Yoga Book, but for those who want something where you can draw on the screen with pressure sensitivity, there’s the new Lenovo Miix detachable.

The company is offering a “backlit keyboard or pen with Windows Ink,” so prepare for confusion over specs. There may be an option to purchase a backlit keyboard if you get the model with the pen.

The Miix 510 weighs in at 880 grams (almost two lbs., without the keyboard) has a 12.2″ screen, up to 1TB SSD (now that’s good!) and optional LTE. It will have Core i7, 7.5 hours of battery life, a metallic finish, and a 16:10 aspect ratio, which we prefer over 16:9 because it’s less long and thin. The keyboard and pen will be included. Though they haven’t been specific, Lenovo uses Wacom AES in their other pressure-sensitive tablets.

As for their other 2-in-1s coming out, the new Yoga Book is an art tablet (more like a graphics tablet with separate screen), but the other newly announced devices do not seem to be. However, the company has been known for being unclear about these details from their initial information, so I will monitor the situation, so to speak.

These new art-tablet offerings ensure it’s going to be a bountiful Fall 2016. These babies will be out in September and October.

End of new art tablets Fall 2016

lenovo-yoga-book

Lenovo Yoga Book first look: type where you draw

Lenovo Yoga Book first look: keyboard and tablet meld into one

Lenovo Yoga Book review

Yoga Book in Create Mode

Lenovo, which was once IBM, has never been known for being artsy. Despite the fact that a lot of their laptops, such as the ThinkPad Yoga line, are tablet PCs with Wacom pressure sensitivity, the computers are still marketed largely at business.

See our hands-on review of the Lenovo Yoga Book.

So this Chinese company’s upcoming release, the Lenovo Yoga Book, is a pleasant surprise. It’s super-slim and light–right now, it’s the world’s lightest, thinnest 2-in-1 of the major 2-in-1s. It just debuted at IFA, a consumer tech-convention in Berlin, and has not yet been released to the public. I’ve gone over the available info to present all I can about this new art tablet.

Perhaps Lenovo is following the zeitgeist that has brought us the paper-to-pixel Wacom Spark and iskn Slate. Whatever they’re doing, they’ve created a versatile digital art and writing tool. Their focus was on mobile productivity, and they asked many users what they wanted in a mobile device.

lenovo yoga book pen tips

The two Lenovo Yoga book pen tips, one with real ink and the other a stylus

Lenovo product developers spent 18 months working out each detail, listening to focus groups, conducting studies, and testing different components.

As a computer, the specs are nothing special. It sports an Atom X5 CPU and 4GB RAM, so it’s more of a kitten than a beast. The Atom probably keeps the price low, and it is quite affordable. It’s discouraging that it has only 64GB of on-board storage, but it has a micro SD slot to go up to 256GB.

Features

Digitizer (on keyboard/drawing surface only, not on screen): Wacom EMR with 2,048 levels of pressure sensitivity
100 degrees of tilt sensitivity
Screen: 10.1″ (diagonal) Capacitive touch IPS LCD with Lenovo Anypen tech
IPS display (1920×1200)
OS: Android and Windows model (hardware is the same on both)
Build: Magnesium aluminum alloy
Processor: Atom X5, 2.4GHz
Brightness: 400 nits
Color Gamut: 70% of sRGB
Colors: Champagne Gold, Gunmetal Gray
Battery Life: 8,500mAh battery. Android 15 hours, Windows 13 hours
Dimensions: 10.1″ × 6.72″ × 0.38″ (256.6 × 170.8 × 9.6 mm)
Weight: 1.52 lbs (.69 kg)
RAM: 4GB
Storage: 64GB
Micro SD slot up to 256GB
LTE (AT&T, T-Mobile)
Ports: micro USB, HDMI out, microSD card slot
Cameras: 8MP rear, MP front
Software: comes with Windows Mobile Microsoft Office apps, OneNote, trial of ArtRage Lite
Optional Accessories: Sleeve, ink-cartridge refills, paper refills

yogabooksize

It’s compact and goes well with this hand model.

What’s in the Box:

Yoga Book
Charger
USB cable
Warranty card
Quick Start Guide
Real Pen
3 ink-cartridge refills
Book Pad (metal clipboard accessory with paper pad, the whole thing clips into the cover)

Portability

Very portable at a little over a pound and a half and a slim .38 of an inch. Its clamshell design protects it, so you can use a sleeve and put the pen in the sleeve if you want, but you don’t have to add weight with a hard-shell case the way you do with, say, an iPad Pro.

Art Programs

Photoshop CC and other Adobe CC programs will run sluggishly; the Atom is not made to handle them. But smaller art programs such as Photoshop Elements and Sketchbook Pro should work fine, and their file-saving options are compatible with Photoshop CC. So you could open your art on a more powerful computer with CC.

The tablet comes with a trial of ArtRage Lite, which is very inexpensive even in the full version. I can see why they picked ArtRage because of its many simulations of real-world brushes, including oil paint, rollers, and glitter–it’s a fun and well-made program.

The Google Play store has plenty of Android art apps, some of which are good such as Procreate, but given that the hardware is the same here for either OS, if you’re trying to choose between the Android and Windows version, I’d go for Windows since its environment allows for desktop programs as well as Windows apps.

Like the rest of the Lenovo Yoga line, the Book takes various poses, including Tent, Stand, Tablet. and Laptop. It’s a clamshell design, and can open fully flat.

yogabookmodes

Battery Life

The Book comes in both Android and Windows version, with the Android lasting an impressive 15 hours on a single charge, and the Windows a long 13 hours. That’s quite a bit of stamina.

 

The Create Pad offers 100 degrees of tilt sensitivity, giving a natural look and feel to drawing and handwriting.

Pen

yogabookpen

Yoga Book dual-use Real Pen uses real, custom ink

The batteryless, Wacom EMR pen gives feedback so you can tell the difference between a brush, crayon, or pencil. It sounds like the sensors respond to assorted digital brushes and trigger haptic feedback.

The Real Pen has no buttons or eraser end. The cap is metal and attaches magnetically to the Book or to the metal Book Pad accessory. The Real Pen uses real ink for when you want to place real paper over the digitizer surface and draw or write. The Book comes with three ink cartridge refills, and you have to use that kind of ink, but you can use any paper. The Real Pen comes with a white digitizer tip to use on the Create Pad as well as on the touchscreen. When you want to use the real ink, you put in a Real Ink cartridge.

By the way, it seems they’ve bumped up the levels of EMR from 1,024 to match the 2,048 of the more recent Wacom AES digitizers. EMR is smoother and more natural-feeling than AES, and better for small writing. AES is really not bad, but EMR is the gold standard, and I’m glad they’ve brought it back, because it has been getting phased out in favor of the less-expensive AES.

Using digitizing ink isn’t anything new, but your work appears immediately on the screen rather than having to sync. There are integrated note-taking, sharing, and annotating abilities for writing. The pen does not convert handwriting to text. The company explains that the use of multiple languages and characters is problematic with such conversions, and they want you to use the Halo Keyboard for text input.

Screen

You can also draw on the LCD screen but, apparently, without pressure sensitivity. The screen has AnyPen tech, but lacks the EMR digitizer layer. The company gives you two pen tips, one that compatible with the screen and one with the digitizer. You can also use your fingers on the touchscreen.

AnyPen does not offer pressure sensitivity and thus is not very different from a normal touchscreen, except you can use non-pens on it–metal or organic things–such as a banana, or fork–anything not fully plastic.

Since the Book has an HDMI port, you can attach a larger monitor to it.

yoga-book-monitor

Using the Yoga Book with a larger monitor

Halo Keyboard

The Halo Keyboard is only there where you need it, brought to life by a ghostly membrane that comprises one of the inner layers. When you’re not typing, it takes on its alter ego, the Create Pad, where you draw on the pad or on paper, with your handwriting or drawing immediately showing on the screen.

You can use art programs, OneNote, or other programs to write or draw. To avoid accidental keystrokes, touch is disabled when you type, except at the center. There is no key travel, which saves time. Key-travel distance means the distance the key has to be pressed down to be recognized, and is zero, because it’s flat.

Lenovo says because they honed the design so much and added haptic feedback, typists typed 66% faster than other touch keyboards. Not only that, but slower typists can used a fixed layout, while touch typists jog along on a “virtual moving layout.”

Perhaps we’re looking at a future with changeable, customizable keyboards for different programs, such a as Photoshop hotkeys.

yogabookkeyboard

Halo Keyboard: now you see it, now you don’t, and when you don’t, it’s the drawing surface

People tend to whack at touch keyboards as if there are keys there, but there’s nothing to absorb the blow, causing the force to bounce back onto your fingertips, which can be uncomfortable and make for poor ergonomics. The haptic feedback may help in not overstressing your digits.

 

Resting your palms at the bottom will not disturb anything; this keyboard has palm rejection where needed. Not only that, but the keyboard measures the strength of each finger tap and can tell the difference between an accidental slip of a fingertip and a real keystroke. Haptic vibrations make you feel like the comforting clackety-clack.

The whole touch panel is semi-transparent, with Lenovo considering over 100 samples to get the best anti-glare coating.

lenovoyogabookpad

Lenovo Yoga Book Pad included accessory (right)

Create Pad

The top layer of Gorilla Glass has an anti-glare coating and a matte/grainy feeling to give the bite of paper, with the EMR layer underneath. The Create Pad has a decent-sized area to draw, something near a regular sheet of paper, and the metal pen cap attaches to the Yoga Book and the Book Pad notepad–since there’s no bezel, it’s good there’s something to stop the pen from rolling off should you have the Book at an angle. Since the Gorilla Glass Create Pad surface has texture, it won’t slip like on glass.

Right side shows artwork on the Create Pad, left side is after coloring using digital tools.

The Create Pad goes into, what else–Create Mode, when you draw or handwrite. The pad is a flush, flat, active area, hence there’s a good-sized workspace; painted borders show you the active area, the inactive area is a fairly small margin.

There are no hotkeys, it’s just one continuous piece. It’s hard to compare this to a regular drawing tablet; its simple form is reminiscent of the basic tablets just used for signatures, but this one has lots of pressure levels and tilt as well.

Thoughts on the Lenovo Yoga Book

It’s sort of like using a graphics tablet along with a screen, but the screen is a lot closer, and you can see what you’re doing when using ink. But since you’re using an art program with various colors and brushes, what you end up drawing won’t necessarily look like what’s on paper. I have more to do to learn exactly how this works.

lenovobookhinge

The custom, watchband-style hinge has three axes, and is made of five materials, and 130 mechanical pieces. A touch of Steampunk, no?

The sheer lightness and user-friendliness, and its novelty make this a fun and useful device if it fills your needs. Those who want a powerful computer will not be satisfied. Those who want something similar in concept but that works across devices might check out the iskn Slate, which lets you use real markers, pen, and pencils.

lenovo yoga book hinge

If you want a handy, light, on-the-go, art-writing-journaling bringalong with a cool design may like this as a productivity tool. It should be out in Fall 2016.

Read more on the Lenovo blog.

 

 

PDF Downloads:

Lenovo Yoga Book Windows spec sheet

Lenovo Yoga Book Android spec sheet

 

 

lenovoanypen

Lenovo AnyPen tablets: all the world’s a stylus

Lenovo AnyPen: Want a tablet with stylus? Grab a fork

Lenovo’s AnyPen is an enticing idea. Available on the Yoga Tablet 2 with AnyPen and some others of the company’s small, general-use tablets, this technology allows you to use just about, well, anything, as a stylus, except something made of pure plastic. Lenovo recommends using a pen or wood-and-graphite pencil. So now you can have a tablet with stylus even without a stylus.

This article is a look at AnyPen as an example of advancement in pen tablets. AnyPen tablets do not have pressure sensitivity or palm rejection.

Rather than using Gorilla Glass, a strengthened glass is used to protect the screen from scratches inflicted by the writing implements.

https://youtu.be/JdDc_D9HdrQ

Lenovo AnyPen demo by cbutters

You can get a fine point with these implements, making it easier to get precise input. On a non-Pro iPad or other capacitive tablet, to use a fine point you need to trick the screen, for instance with those styluses that have a plastic disc around the tip.

With AnyPen technology, no such trick is needed. You can use a stylus, a real pencil, a real pen, a carrot, a banana, a hammer, your finger, a screwdriver, or a stick as an input device. Just as long as it’s not pure plastic, most materials will work. Lenovo has said it’s not expensive, and they added it to the Yoga Tablet 2 without hiking up the tab a whole lot.

This is certainly useful for notetaking, sketching, and technical drawing. The Tablet 2 even lets you hang it up, for instance in a garage or workshop. So you can grab a Philips-Head and draft up some plans for that new shelving.

(See more Lenovo articles and reviews)

Tablet with stylus redefined

AnyPen uses a capacitive touchscreen, not a resistive one.  A carrot has skin, and thus is not all that different from a finger. But getting a stick or graphite pencil to work is a feat on Lenovo’s part and redefines the idea of a tablet with stylus. The company can be maddening with its confusing product releases, but they are doing some real R&D.

lenovo anypen

You can use a carrot as a stylus.

They aren’t the only company doing something like this; the Panasonic Toughpad FZ-M1 can also be used with a pencil or metal implement.

The touch controllers in these have a very high signal-to-noise ratio, making them recognize objects as small as 1mm, whereas most capacitive screens require at least a 5mm stylus. The non-Pro iPad, with its low signal-to-noise ratio, cannot recognize a fine tip unless it has a plastic disc around it. That’s why you have to use a squishy stylus on that kind of tablet; it’s large enough to drown out the noise, so to speak.

(see good styluses for drawing on iPad).

With AnyPen devices, you don’t have to press down hard at all to get a mark. On the downside, one user reported it was recognizing the entire tip of the pencil, skewing the line.

tablet with stylus

Lenovo Yoga Book

The Lenovo Yoga Book has a pressure-sensitive Wacom tablet in the black part, which also has a disappearing/reappearing Halo keyboard.

Not up to speed for art

Tablets with Lenovo AnyPen are not art tablets per se, since there’s no pressure sensitivity or palm rejection. But for those who geek out on pen tech, it’s a fun concept.

It would be great if a pressure-sensitive tablet came out with this feature, especially with a larger screen. Imagine if you could still be productive after dropping your digitizer pen down a storm drain. Hopefully, you keep some spare pens around just in case.

Lenovo has released AnyPen on Windows tablets and Android.

It’s certainly useful and cool, but artists will want to stick to their pressure-sensitive styluses.

If you want to read more about the tech, check out this post on the Lenovo blog.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?time_continue=105&v=m-AFZoWBb1Q

Suppertime! AnyPen demoed on Android

End of Lenovo AnyPen: all the world’s a stylus

newthinkpadyoga14

Newer model ThinkPad Yoga 14 / ThinkPad Yoga 460 review

New Model Lenovo ThinkPad Yoga 14 (also ThinkPad Yoga 460) review: pen included

 

Type of tablet

Laptop Ultrabook (nondetachable keyboard) 2-in-1
Digitizer: Wacom ES with 2,048 levels of pressure sensitivity. Pen included.

newthinkpadyoga14

 

See at Amazon

Model no. 20FY0002US

Features

Display 14″ diagonal, 1920 x 1080 IPS
Processor: 6th-gen. Skylake Intel Core i5-6200U
Graphics: dedicated NVIDIA GeForce 940M graphics with 2GB dedicated video memory
Folds 360 degrees, into laptop, stand, tent, tablet modes
8GBDDR3L RAM
256GB SSD
Ports: 4-in 1 media card reader
Three USB 3.0 and two 2.0, though some say they got three 3.0 USB ports. The 3.0 ports are backward-compatible with 2.0 devices, at 2.0 speeds.
HDMI, miniDisplayPort
Weight: 3.85 lbs
backlit keyboard
Touchpad and ThinkPad red TrackPoint button
Dimensions: 13.31″ width x 9.37″ x .75″ (depth)

It is the same as the Lenovo Yoga 460, so you could read this as a Yoga 460 review as well. The 460 actually does have an i7 model. That listing is lacking in further detail.

As of April, 2016: the Yoga 460 now on the Lenovo site does not have the discrete (separate) graphics card, only integrated graphics. That 460 features up to a 6th-gen processor.

Windows 10, comes with Home edition

This Lenovo Yoga 14 has an i5 processor, powerful enough to run Photoshop and all the Adobe programs. The dedicated graphics card offers a speed boost, and the Skylake i5 is the equivalent of an i7 from the previous generation. That being said, it would be nice if there were an i7 model.

The RAM and SSD on this ThinkPad Yoga are both upgradeable, though there is just one RAM slot, so you can take out the 8GB stick and put in a 16.

Thanks to the dedicated graphics, you’ll be able to do moderate gaming and video editing, and get better results in Photoshop operations that use a lot of rendering, such as filters. This is still not a heavy-duty gaming monster machine, but a general overall Ultrabook with wide capabilities.

Screen

While it’s HD, 1920 x 1080p is not that high-res compared to a lot of computers coming out. However, the fact that it’s not 4K makes battery life last longer. The resolution is fine for looking at artwork, reading text, and watching video. The colors are clear and bright. It’s not overly glossy. The IPA screen supplies good viewing angles.

You can add two more displays, such as a monitor or TV to it via the HDMI and miniDisplayPort.

Portability

At 3.85 lbs., it’s not bad to carry around for short periods, but feels heavy holding in one hand or resting on the lap.

Pen

The pen is not miniature or very short, but it’s skinny and not optimal to draw or write with for long periods. You can purchase a  more normal-sized pen (both thicker and longer) if you prefer. This pen needs a battery, but the one included with the tablet PC does not, because it charges from the computer.

Wacom ES has excellent accuracy and pressure sensitivity, second only to Wacom EMR in terms of sensitivity (ES requires a little more force to get a mark). Its accuracy exceeds EMR, with no parallax and no jitter around the edges as Wacom EMR gets. I did notice a little more jitter when drawing slow lines than with traditional EMR. Palm rejection works well. The pressure curve is smooth, no blobs, no little “tails.” You will not be able to use a traditional EMR pen on this.

If you want a thicker pen, you can buy the ThinkPad Pro Pen, a Wacom AES active capacitive pen with 2,048 levels of pressure sensitivity that takes an AAAA battery.

thinkpad active capacitive-pen

The thicker pen: ThinkPad Pro Pen, takes an AAAA battery. See it on Amazon

Keyboard

The backlit, chiclet-style keyboard is comfortable and easy to type on. If you type a lot, but also want an art tablet, this is a good choice. The keyboard is Lift and Lock, so when you have it folded into Tablet mode, the frame rises around the keys and the keyboard is disabled. So you won’t be able to reach back for keyboard shortcuts. Instead, you could use an external keyboard, either Bluetooth or USB. The ThinkPad red TrackPoint nub lets you move the cursor long distances with a small finger movement. Its sporelike top with tiny bumps gives your fingertip traction (and a little massage).

Battery life
6-8 hours, depending what you’re doing.

User reviews

Most users have been very happy with this computer, feeling it’s a great value with its many features, bright screen, speed, and build quality. A few got ones with glitches but managed to address them. Aside from irregular complaints, this has been a successful release.  I haven’t seen any complaints about overheating or battery problems, though some wish the battery lasted longer.

Pros

solid, durable, well-built
dedicated graphics
nice keyboard
pen is included and fits into a slot in the body
value

Cons

on the heavy side for drawing
single RAM slot (upgradeable, but would be nice if there were two slots)
pen that comes with it is thin
some have reported touchscreen glitches

 

yoga 460 review

The Verdict
This new Lenovo Yoga 14 review is a drawing-hand thumb’s up. It doesn’t have the issues of the last release, which included some that shipped with bad batteries. It’s a solid, portable, and versatile machine.

Weird facts: did you know the ThinkPad’s design was inspired by the Japanese Bento box? This post on Lenovo’s blog explains.

I think the simple design is one of the main appeals of the ThinkPad. The box shape offers protection. The ThinkPad has a utilitarian look. It’s easy to not notice it much at first, but the details show a great deal of thought, and the many poses add new uses. You can also open it flat if you wish to draw using the keyboard shortcuts without a spare keyboard.

The Yogas have more Penabled devices than anyplace else and continue to offer them.

This is a great choice for an art tablet that’s an all-around tablet. It’s not super duper powerful, but powerful enough to run Photoshop and do moderate gaming. You can add more RAM and a faster hard drive. This computer can be your whole office and art studio.

In some ways I prefer the previous ThinkPad Yoga 14, which had a discrete GPU and superior color gamut. This is one is more of a general-use machine that’s suitable for drawing.

Here’s a detailed drawing test by Shogmaster.

https://youtu.be/puFE9-luWzc

end of New Lenovo ThinkPad Yoga 14 / ThinkPad Yoga 460 review

 

 

Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Yoga 2016: light, slim, and Wacom

Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Yoga 2016: lithe spirit

by Tablets for Artists

thinkpadx1yoga2016

ThinkPad X1 Yoga 2016 on display at CES

See it on Amazon.

The ThinkPad X1 Yoga 2016 was released at CES this year. I’s a business laptop very similar to the X1 Carbon but with a touchscreen and active pen. It has several innovations. One is that one model sports an optional OLED display. That model will be released in April, 2016. OLED offers richer colors and deeper silky blacks. The second innovation is that the pen, which is battery-free and has 2048 levels of pressure sensitivity, can be charged in the chassis. This is already done with the iPad Pro using their digitizer, but it’s new for a PC with a Wacom digitizer. The third “first” is that at release time, it’s the thinnest and lightest 2-in-1 out there. Preliminary feedback has been positive for both the computer itself and the drawing experience. You don’t have to worry about pen batteries, and the laptop is plenty powerful enough for Photoshop and more. Like other ThinkPad Yogas, it bends into the traditional ThinkPad Yoga’s four modes and  has the 360-degree swiveling hinge.

The computer is lightweight and downright skinny with a .66″ profile, and the The ThinkPad X1 Yoga could make artists very happy, if they can afford the price tag.

Features

Display: 14″ screen, IPS (OLED option coming in April, 2016), 2K display (2560 x 1440), antiglare touchscreen
Dimensions (width, depth, height):
16.8″ width x 13.11″ x 9.01″ x 0.66″
mm: 333 x 229 x 16.8
OLED Version 17 13.11″ x 9.01″ x 0.67″
mm : 333 x 229 x 17
OS: WIndows 10, Home and Pro versions available
Weight: 2.8  lbs
Dockable Wacom ES active pen included
pen: 2,048 levels of pressure sensitivity
Graphics
Intel HD Graphics 520
Memory: Up to 16GB RAM and 1TB NVMe storage (that’s storage designed for SSDs). RAM not upgradeable after purchase.
Processor: i5 to i7
3 USB-3 ports (no USB-C)
full HDMI displayport
Graphics: Intel HD 520
360-degree hinge turns around; hinge opens and closes to 180 degrees (can open flat)
Retractable Lift-n-Lock keys (auto-retracts when folded to tablet mode)
Pen stored and charges in laptop body
Fingerprint sensor
WRITE-IT software understands and corrects your handwriting across apps
MicroSD and SIM card slots
optional 4G LTE
optional wireless dock

Battery Life

8 hours

Portability

Lightweight, very portable weightwise at 2.8 lbs. and .66″ depth. Sizewise, the 14″ screen takes up more space.

Pen

Going back to earlier ThinkPads, the pen, with 2,048 pressure levels, gets stored inside the laptop body. But differing from earlier ThinkPads, this pen does not have a battery, but a tiny capacitor. To charge the pen, you can insert it into a port in the laptop (as with the iPad Pro’s Apple Pencil) and it only takes 15 seconds to get a charge that lasts up to 100 minutes. So you’ll never need to worry about pen downtime or pen batteries. AES pens do have a bit of jitter, as you can see in the video below, but it’s manageable. They do not suffer from the bad jitter around the edges of the screen that plagues traditional Wacom EMR. There is less parallax than EMR, and a slightly lower hover distance, the distance at which the pen causes anything to happen. It’s high enough to still have good palm rejection. The initial activation force is low–even though AES is similar to N-trig, to me it feels more on the Wacom side even when compared with the new Surface Pen.

Modes

Like other ThinkPad Yogas, this one has 4 modes, or positions: Laptop, Stand, Tablet, and Tent.

lenovo-thinkpad-x1-yoga

Keyboard

Because the ThinkPad X1 Yoga 2016 has Lift-n-Lock keys that disable the keyboard when folded into tablet mode, you will probably want to use an external USB or Bluetooth keyboard to access keyboard shortcuts when drawing in tablet mode. You could open the whole thing up into an open clamshell, since the hinge opens to 180 degrees, but it’s awkward to draw that way. The keyboard is full-size and backlit.

Screen

You might not want the OLED model, because the screen can burn in.

The pen that comes with the Yoga skinny, though the length is decent. You might want to buy a thicker pen if you prefer to draw with one. (I’m searching for a link to that pen).

Traditionally, Ultrabooks have exchanged power for portablity, but this one has plenty of power.

The Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Yoga can run full desktop programs such as Photoshop, Illustrator, Manga, and all that, as well as Metro Apps such as Fresh Paint.

The poor laptop was put to military-grade endurance tests against moisture, drops, fungus, and more. The full-size, backlit keyboard is spillproof. Speaking as one who once fried a motherboard with lemonade, I appreciate that.

Here’s Lisa Gade’s video Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Yoga 2016 drawing demo. As you can see, the Wacom pen settings are pretty much the same as for traditional EMR Wacom pen settings.

See it on Amazon.

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d0PVjrzc-xk

 

See review of ThinkPad Yoga 14 (also Wacom AES)

See review of ThinkPad Yoga 2-in-1 (traditional Wacom)

For more explanation of the different types of art tablets, see our front page article.

This high-quality all-in-one should be a good bet for artists.

This is a preliminary review/article, since it just came out.

end of ThinkPad X1 Yoga 2016 just released