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Lenovo ThinkPad X61 Tablet

Dr Lenovo has increased the strength of medication with the latest X61 Tablet

Lenovo ThinkPad X61 Tablet
The chassis is made from a magnesium alloy and weighs just 2.02kg

We were disappointed to see that the keyboard illumination LED appeared to be missing from our sample, but it also prompted us to flip the screen around and change to Tablet mode, where a number of notable features stood out. Tablets use a digitiser behind the screen, which is why you need a special Tablet stylus and can't just use the end of a pen or a finger to click on buttons and hyperlinks.

battery test - constant use (in hours)
battery test - longer bars are better
Longer bars are better

The X61 is different from other Tablets as it also sports a touch screen, so when you prod the screen a ghostly mouse symbol appears and the cursor moves around as if by magic. The reason Tablets don't usually have a touch screen is to avoid confusion when you place your hand on the screen so you can use the hand writing feature. The X61 touch screen appears to distinguish a point contact, such as your finger tip and ignores your whole hand, which is rather neat.

3DMark06 benchmark test
3DMark06 test - longer bars are better
Longer bars are better

There are more control buttons on the Tablet screen than you might expect, including a four-way navigation pad, an Escape button, and a button to jog the display around 90° at a time as you switch from portrait to landscape mode. In fact, this last button isn't strictly necessary as the X61 has an internal accelerometer that judges when you turn the screen. However, it takes a few seconds to make the change.

PCMark05 benchmark tests
PCMark05 test results - longer bars are better
Longer bars are better

Verdict

The X61 is a decent laptop with the caveats that the processor is a dog and the screen is low resolution. Switch it into Tablet mode and it comes into its own, as the screen works well in both portrait and landscape. Added to that, Lenovo has included a number of useful controls that make this the most useful Tablet your reviewer has ever seen. Two problems remain; it's a bit heavy and it's far too expensive.

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Lenovo ThinkPad X61 Tablet

Lenovo has updated the X60 Tablet with Intel’s latest 965G chipset and Centrino Pro hardware and the result is the imaginatively named X61
Price: £2115 inc VAT RRP