Subject: Mobile | January 3, 2017 - 08:01 AM | Sebastian Peak
Tagged: x1 yoga, Thinkpad, notebook, Lenovo, laptop, convertible, CES 2017, CES, 2-in-1
Lenovo is announcing their 2017 ThinkPad lineup today, and on the convertible side of things the new ThinkPad X1 Yoga is “the only 14-inch notebook with an OLED screen”, and though that particular panel type is optional, having seen last year’s OLED model in person the pure blacks and infinite contrast make IPS options pale in comparison (literally).
"Also available in the new metallic silver, the updated ThinkPad X1 Yoga is flawlessly flexible and adapts to its users’ needs offering true multi-mode capability and can deliver stunning colors and absolute blacks on the only 14-inch notebook with an OLED screen. A redesigned rechargeable pen and improved ‘rise and fall' keyboard complete the improved experience."
The improved 'rise and fall' keyboard appears to operate differently from the original 'Lift 'n Lock' design, as the keys themselves (rather than a panel surrounding them) are raised and lowered depending on orientation of the Yoga's 2-in-1 design.
The specifications are very similar (with the exception of that OLED panel option) to the new ThinkPad X1 Carbon, which makes sense considering the X1 Yoga is essentially the convertible version of that notebook:
- 14” WQHD OLED (2560 x 1440), Touch, 300 nits
- 14” WQHD IPS (2560 x 1440), Touch, 270 nits
- 14” FHD IPS (1920 x 1080), Touch 270 nits
- Processor: Up to Intel Core 7th gen
- Intel Iris Plus Graphics 640 or
- Intel HD Graphics 620
- Up to 16GB 1866MHz LPDDR3
- Up to 16GB 2133MHz LPDDR3 (for Intel Iris only)
- 128GB SSD SATA
- 180GB SSD Intel SATA
- 256GB SSD Intel PCIe TLC OPAL2
- 256GB SSD PCIe TLC OPAL2
- 512GB SSD Intel PCIe TLC OPAL2
- 512GB SSD PCIe TLC OPAL2
- 1TB SSD PCIe TLC OPAL2
- I/O Ports
- 2 x Intel® ThunderboltTM 3, 3 x USB3.0, HDMI,
- native RJ45, microSD, microSIM
- Intel® Dual-Band Wireless-AC 8265
- 2 x 2 AC + Bluetooth® 4.2
- Qualcomm® SnapdragonTM X7 LTE-A EM7430
- Qualcomm® SnapdragonTM X7 LTE-A EM7455
- Intel® Tri-Band Wireless-AC 18265 (WiGig +
- WiFi 2 x 2 AC + Bluetooth® 4.2)
- NFC option
- LTE-A (4G)
- I/O Ports
- dTPM 2.0 Display
- Touch fingerprint reader option
- Audio: Dolby AudioTM Premium
- Webcam: HD 720p, IR camera option
- Battery: Up to 16 hours (OLED version up to 10.5 hours)
- Operating System: Windows 10 Pro (64 bit)
- Dimensions (WxDxH): 333 x 229 x 17.05 / 13.1 x 9.0 x 0.67 inches
- Weight: Starting at 3.13 lbs / 1.42 kg (OLED version starting at 2.99 lbs / 1.36 kg)
- Colors: Black, Silver
The new ThinkPad X1 Yoga will be available in February with an MSRP starting at $1499.
Follow all of our coverage of the show at https://pcper.com/ces!
Subject: Mobile | December 28, 2016 - 05:01 AM | Sebastian Peak
Tagged: yoga, update, Thinkpad, Refresh, notebook, Lenovo, laptop, kaby lake, Intel, convertible, CES 2017, CES, 7th generation, 2-in-1
Lenovo has unveiled their new ThinkPad notebook lineup ahead of the upcoming CES 2017, with refreshed models featuring the new 7th-generation Intel (“Kaby Lake”) processors, among other new features.
ThinkPad Yoga 370 (Image credit: Lenovo)
New models include the newly-designed ThinkPad Yoga 370 2-in-1 convertible, refreshed T Series (T470, T570, T470s, and T470p) and L Series (L470 and L570) models, the new X270, and an updated version of the ThinkPad 13.
ThinkPad 13 (Image credit: Lenovo)
In addition to the move to 7th-generation Intel CPUs, there are number of features across the board with the new ThinkPads, including:
- Microsoft Signature: All ThinkPads comes loaded out of the box with the Microsoft Signature Image (clean install, no bloatware)
- Precision TouchPad: Microsoft’s PTP standard supported across all devices
- USB-C “Anti-Fry” Protection: Systems with USB-C have equipped with protection circuit to protect from improperly designed/malfunctioning USB-C power supplies
- dTPM 2.0 security support: Universal implementation of discrete TPM 2.0
- ThinkPad Intelligent diagnostic codes: Intelligent Diagnostics with musical tones from notebook interpreted by companion smartphone app
- Intel Optane Performance: Non-volatile storage medium in the PCIe M.2 format for significant improvements in endurance, performance, and power consumption
ThinkPad X270 (Image credit: Lenovo)
** Edit by Allyn **
Digging further into the model options / specs, it appears that some of these models will have an optional 16GB (smaller of the two) variant of Optane storage installed as a Storage Accelerator. This accelerator appears to be configurable with either an NVMe (NAND) SSD *or* a HDD. Intel will most likely overlay this cache using their RST Driver, as that infrastructure was put in place way back in 2011 when they introduced Z68 RST Caching. The 2011 version of this caching was an attempt to overlay a small SATA SSD onto a HDD, and while it was effective, the rapid adoption and sales of low-cost MLC SSDs quickly outweighed the need for such a cache as a boot volume.
XPoint should offer enough of a performance boost (particularly for very small random access) to make for effective performance gains even over NVMe SSDs. Depending on how Intel tunes their RST driver to employ XPoint, we might see some impressive benefits, especially if the non-volatility is taken advantage of. Near instant wake from hibernates if the hiberfile is mostly cached on wake/boot, as an example.
Something else worth considering, that is not present in the above leaked specs, is that Optane will very likely be able to handle <4KB random accesses extremely well (XPoint is byte / word randomly writable / addressable). The key question is if that is possible in its first generation implementation, which we should know more about shortly after CES.
** End edit **
We won’t have detailed information about hardware (specific CPU models, etc.) until CES, so stay tuned!
Follow all of our coverage of the show at http://pcper.com/ces!
Subject: Mobile | December 28, 2016 - 05:01 AM | Sebastian Peak
Tagged: usb type-c, thunderbolt 3, ThinkPad Type-C Dock, ThinkPad Thunderbolt 3 Dock, Thinkpad, notebook, Lenovo, laptop, dock, CES 2017, CES
Lenovo has teased a pair of new docks for their upcoming ThinkPad refresh at CES, with both Thunderbolt 3 and USB Type-C options. We don’t have a lot of details but the photos from Lenovo show the available ports on these two docks.
ThinkPad Thunderbolt 3 (left) and USB Type-C (right) docks (Image: Lenovo)
The ThinkPad Thunderbolt 3 Dock supports up to 3 displays, with a pair of DisplayPort outputs along with a full size HDMI. The front panel offers a Thunderbolt 3 port, USB, and 3.5 mm audio, and the rear offers four more USB 3.0 ports (one charging), LAN, and a VGA output.
Back view of Thunderbolt 3 Dock (Image: Lenovo)
The Type-C dock supports up to 2 displays via DisplayPort, and has three USB 3.0 ports between the front and back panel (plus a front panel Type-C port), along with legacy USB 2.0 ports for peripherals. The smaller dock retains VGA and LAN ports as well.
Back view of USB Type-C Dock (Image: Lenovo)
Expect full specifications after the official launch of these products, presumably at CES 2017.
Follow all of our coverage of the show at http://pcper.com/ces!
Podcast #424 - AMD Radeon Pro GPUs, Corsair Carbide Air 740 Review, MSI Gaming Notebook Overview, VRMark, and more!
Subject: General Tech | November 10, 2016 - 07:22 PM | Allyn Malventano
Tagged: VRMark, VR, video, Red Alert 2, radeon pro, podcast, nvidia, notebook, NES Classic, nasa, msi, Mate 9, Leica, laptop, Kirin 960, gaming, DeepMind, carbide air 740
PC Perspective Podcast #424 - 11/10/16
Join us this week as we discuss new AMD Radeon Pro GPUs, Corsair Carbide Air 740 Review, MSI Gaming Notebook Overview, VRMark, and more!
The URL for the podcast is: http://pcper.com/podcast - Share with your friends!
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- MP3 - Direct download link to the MP3 file
Hosts: Allyn Malventano, Josh Walrath, and Jeremy Hellstrom
Program length: 1:09:34
Week in Review:
News items of interest:
Hardware/Software Picks of the Week
Subject: Systems, Mobile | August 31, 2016 - 06:30 PM | Sebastian Peak
Tagged: Yoga Book, windows, wacom, notebook, Lenovo, Halo Keyboard, Create Pad, Android
Lenovo has unveiled the Yoga Book, a 2-in-1 design with a unique touch-based lower half below a conventional 1920x1200 IPS touch display. Lenovo is calling the Yoga Book "the world’s thinnest and lightest 2-in-1", with a 9.6mm thickness and weight of 1.52 pounds.
This lower section is a hybrid design, combining Lenovo's "Halo Keyboard" virtual keyboard with a surface called "Create Pad"; allowing the lower half to be used for pen writing (with handwriting recognition) and drawing. The "Real Pen" (which is a dual-use ink pen and stylus) offers 2,048 pressure levels and 100-degree angle detection, according to Lenovo, and promises a precise experience when writing and creating artwork.
"The Halo Keyboard re-imagines the possibilities of a modern keyboard, while providing the technology platform for all other standout Yoga Book productivity-driven features, such as the Create Pad and Real Pen. It appears to the user as a full, backlit virtual keyboard with shortcut keys for a typing experience that matches that of a physical keyboard, easily overcoming the challenges of typing on a tablet screen."
"The lack of physical keys also allows the Halo Keyboard’s flush surface to house the Create Pad. For the artists and free hand note-takers, the Create Pad converts into a virtual notepad that instantly digitizes everything from doodles and to-do lists to web page annotations and on-screen notes, using the Real Pen and our Note Saver app."
The Yoga Book is available in both Android and Windows versions, with the Android version offering a custom interface called "Book UI". As to hardware, both versions are powered by an Intel Atom x5-Z8550 processor (quad-Core, up to 2.4 GHz) with 4GB of LPDDR3 memory and 64GB of onboard storage (expandable via microSD cards up to 128GB in size).
What about pricing? This might be surprising for a high-concept device like this, as Lenovo has chosen to compete in the $500 tablet space. The Android-powered Yoga Book starts at $499, with the Yoga Book with Windows at $549. Both will be available starting in October.
Full press release after the break.
Subject: Systems, Mobile | August 31, 2016 - 02:33 PM | Sebastian Peak
Tagged: 2560x1080, ips, Predator 21 X, notebook, laptop, gaming, curved, acer, kaby lake, GTX 1080, sli
Acer has announced "the world's first notebook with a curved screen", and this panel happens to be attached to a very high-end gaming laptop in the Predator 21 X.
In addition to the 2560x1080 curved 21-inch display, the new machine also offers Tobii eye-tracking technology, Intel 7th Generation "Kaby Lake" processors, and (last but not least) dual NVIDIA GTX 1080 GPUs in SLI.
"The Predator 21 X takes the flagship spot in Acer’s gaming notebook series and is advanced beyond anything on the market today. It’s the world’s first notebook to offer a curved 21-inch IPS display (2560 x 1080), and when combined with wide-angle viewing, it delivers a truly immersive gaming experience.
To bring gameplay immersion to the next level, the notebook also integrates Tobii eye-tracking technology for a new method of control that’s more intuitive and natural. Built-in eye-tracking hardware (infrared sensors and software) unlocks a completely new facet in gaming. By tracking a gamer’s eye with software, the notebook introduces new interactions like aiming, identifying enemies and taking cover simply by gazing at objects on the screen. Eye tracking also enhances the experience by providing infinite views whilst navigating treacherous paths and roads in a game."
Other features of the Predator 21 X include a keyboard with Cherry MX key switches, a unique design for the numeric keypad "that allows it to be flipped over and turned into a Precision Touchpad", a 5-fan cooling system, and a 4-speaker, dual-subwoofer premium sound system.
Pricing and availability have not been revealed.
Subject: Mobile | August 19, 2016 - 07:46 PM | Sebastian Peak
Tagged: UHD, ROG, Republic of Gamers, notebook, laptop, GX800, GTX 1080, gaming, g-sync, asus, 4k
ASUS has announced perhaps the most impressively-equipped gaming laptop to date. Not only does the new ROG GX800 offer dual NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 graphics in SLI, but these cards are powering an 18-inch 4K display panel with NVIDIA G-SYNC.
Not enough? The system also offers liquid cooling (via the liquid-cooling dock) which allows for overclocking of the CPU, graphics, and memory.
"ROG GX800 is the world’s first 18-inch real 4K UHD gaming laptop to feature the latest NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 in 2-Way SLI. It gives gamers desktop-like gaming performance, silky-smooth gameplay and detailed 4K UHD gaming environments. The liquid-cooled ROG GX800 features the ROG-exclusive Hydro Overclocking System that allows for extreme overclocking of the processor, graphics card and DRAM. In 3DMark 11 and Fire Strike Ultra benchmark tests, a ROG GX800 equipped with the Hydro Overclocking System scored 76% higher than other gaming laptops in the market.
ROG GX800 comes with NVIDIA G-SYNC technology and has plug-and-play compatibility with leading VR headsets to allow gamers to enjoy truly immersive VR environments. It has the MechTAG (Mechanical Tactile Advanced Gaming) keyboard with mechanical switches and customizable RGB LED backlighting for each key."
Specifics on availability and pricing were not included in the announcement.
Subject: Systems, Mobile | August 16, 2016 - 03:39 PM | Sebastian Peak
Tagged: Skylake, nvidia, notebook, laptop, Intel Core i7, gtx 1070, gtx 1060, gigabyte, gaming
GIGABYTE has refreshed their gaming laptop lineup with NVIDIA's GTX 10 series graphics, announcing updated versions of the P55 & P57 Series, and thin-and-light P35 & P37.
"GIGABYTE offers a variety of options based on preference while providing the latest GeForce® GTX 10 series graphics and the latest 6th Generation Intel Core i7 Processor for the power and performance to meet the growing demands of top tier applications, games, and Virtual Reality. With the superior performance GIAGBYTE also includes industry leading features such as M.2 PCIe SSD, DDR4 memory, USB 3.1 with Type-C connection, and HDMI 2.0."
The notebooks retain 6th-gen Intel (Skylake) Core processors, but now feature NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1070 and GTX 1060 GPUs.
Here's a rundown of the new systems from GIGABYTE, beginning with the Performance Series:
The GIGABYE P57 Gaming Laptop
"The new 17” P57 is pulling no punches when it comes to performance, including the all-new, ultra-powerful NVIDIA® GeForce® GTX 1070 & 1060 Graphics. With a fresh GPU, come fresh ID changes. Along with its subtle style, curved lines and orange accents, comes all-new additional air intake ventilation above the keyboard to improve thermal cooling. The backlit keyboard itself supports Anti-Ghost with 30-Key Rollover. The Full HD 1920x1080 IPS display provides vivid and immersive visuals, while a Swappable Bay is included for user preference of an optical drive, an additional HDD, or weight reduction."
Next we have the thin-and-light ULTRAFORCE Gaming models:
The ULTRAFORCE P35
"The new 17.3” P37 reiterates what ULTRAFORCE is all about. Despite being a 17” model, the P37 weights under 2.7kg and retains an ultra-thin and light profile being less than 22.5mm thin. Paired with extreme mobility is the NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1070 graphics. The display comes in both options of 4K UHD 3840x2160 and FHD 1920x1080, achieving high-res gaming thanks to the performance boost with the new graphics.
The P37 includes a hot-swappable bay for an additional HDD, ODD, or to reduce weight for improved mobility, forming a quad-storage system with multiple M.2 PCIe SSDs and HDDs. The Macro Keys on the left, together with the included Macro Hub software, allows up to 25 programmable macros for one-click execution in any games and applications
Powerful yet portable, the thinnest gaming laptop of the series, the 15.6” P35, also has either a UHD 3840x2160 or FHD 1920x1080 display, delivering perfect and vivid colors for an enhanced gameplay experience. Included in the Ultrabook-like chassis is the powerful all-new NVIDIA® GeForce GTX 1070 GPU. The P35 also features the iconic hot-swappable bay for flexible storage and the quad-storage system."
The P37 keyboard features macro keys
We will update with pricing and availability for these new laptops when known.
Subject: Systems, Mobile | August 16, 2016 - 04:00 AM | Sebastian Peak
Tagged: pascal, nvidia, notebook, msi, GTX 1080, gtx 1070, gtx 1060, gaming laptop, gaming
MSI has updated their gaming notebook lineup with the new NVIDIA Pascal mobile GPUs, with the GTX 1080, GTX 1070, and GTX 1060 now available across the board. MSI says the new GPUs will provide up to 40% better performance than the company’s previous GT, GS, and GE models.
“MSI’s GT83/73VR Titan series now showcases an even more commanding design with sports car inspired exhausts and MSI’s Cooler Boost Titan, featuring multiple exhausts and dual whirlwind blade fans to guarantee the best performance even under the most stress. Available in 3 different sizes and 17 unique configurations, including with SLI graphics, 4K panels and Tobii’s eye-tracking technology, MSI’s GT series is the optimum laptop for serious gamers.”
Positioned at the top of the heap is the mighty Titan series, which naturally offers the highest possible specs for those who can afford the price tag.
Notice anything about the top-end GT83 model in the chart above? The GT83VR Titan SLI indeed contains not one, but two NVIDIA GTX 1080 graphics chips, making this $5099 gaming machine a monster of a system - though its 1080p screen real estate means a connected VR headset will be more likely to use all of that available GPU power.
Moving down to the GT72/GT62 series, we see a move to the GTX 1070 GPU accross the board:
Next up is the GS73, which offers (in addition to Pascal graphics) MSI's "Cooler Boost Trinity", which is the company's advanced cooling system for thin notebook designs.
“MSI’s redesigned GS73/63 VR Stealth Pro series now comes with MSI’s Cooler Boost Trinity, a temperature control system featuring three ultra-thin whirlwind blade fans, and a 5-pipe thermal design optimized for ultra-slim gaming notebooks. Available in 17-inch, 15-inch, and 14-inch options, MSI’s GS series gives power mobile gaming a new meaning with the performance of larger systems while measuring less than 1-inch thick.”
The more modest GTX 1060 powers the <1 inch thick notebooks in the series, and both the GS73 and GS63 VR Stealth Pro are equipped with 4K resolution IPS screens (with the GS43VR Phantom Pro at 1080p).
Next we have the VR Apache series, with another approach to cooling called "Cooler Boost 4":
“MSI’s GE72/62 VR Apache series now features MSI’s Cooler Boost 4 technology, an enhanced cooling system with multiple exhausts to keep temperatures low even during the most headed battles. Starting at $1,649, the VR-ready GE series comes in two different sizes and is the ideal unit for gaming enthusiast looking for a powerful and reliable unit.”
These lower-cost gaming machines are still equipped with Intel Core i7 processors, and offer GTX 1060 graphics for both models.
As a very interesting addition to the news of these new laptops, MSI has also announced that select machines equipped with NVIDIA GTX 10 Series graphics will feature 120Hz IPS panels with a 5ms response time.
We should have more imformation on availability soon.
Introduction and Specifications
Dell's premium XPS notebook family includes both 15 inch and 13 inch variants, and ship with the latest 6th-generation Intel Skylake processors and all of the latest hardware. But the screens are what will grab your immediate attention; bright, rich, and with the narrowest bezels on any notebook courtesy of Dell's InfinityEdge displays.
Since Ryan’s review of the XPS 13, which is now his daily driver, Dell has added the XPS 15, which is the smallest 15-inch notebook design you will find anywhere. The XPS 13 is already "the smallest 13-inch laptop on the planet", according to Dell, giving their XPS series a significant advantage in the ultrabook market. The secret is in the bezel, or lack thereof, which allows Dell to squeeze these notebooks into much smaller physical dimensions than you might expect given their display sizes.
But you get more than just a compact size with these XPS notebooks, as the overall quality of the machines rivals that of anything else you will find; and may just be the best Windows notebooks you can buy right now. Is this simply bluster? Notebooks, like smartphones, are a personal thing. They need to conform to the user to provide a great experience, and there are obviously many different kinds of users to satisfy. Ultimately, however, Dell has produced what could easily be described as class leaders with these machines.