Welcome to CES 2012 everyone! For today’s show, we’ll have a look at new laptops from Lenovo with…wait, isn’t CES next week? Sure, but don’t tell Lenovo — they’ve jumped the gun and unveiled their new laptop lineup early, and it includes a couple head-turners, like a dual operating system “hybrid” ThinkPad and the world’s first ThinkPad Ultrabook.
The hybrid’s pictured up top, dubbed the X1 Hybrid, a 13.3-inch (1366 by 768 pixel LED display) Thinkpad wielding your choice of Intel core i3, i5 or i7 CPUs and up to 8GB of memory. It runs Windows, of course, but lets you switch over to Linux with the press of a button if you want to max out battery life, something Lenovo’s calling Instant Media Mode (IMM). IMM mode runs off a Qualcomm dual core processor and can access up to 16GB of memory. “To switch to IMM from Windows, users simply click on an icon on the laptop’s home screen,” says Lenovo. “With IMM, users can watch videos, view photos, listen to music, browse the web and even work on documents with double the battery life, up to 10 hours.” Look for all that in a 0.6-inch thin chassis with your choice of 320GB or 160GB solid state drive for storage. The price: About $1,599, says Lenovo, and it’ll be available in Q2 2012.
Next up, the Ultrabook: Lenovo calls it a T430u — a 14-inch, 0.78-inch-thick, matte-finish “business-class Ultrabook” packing the latest i-series Intel Core processors, an “island-style” keyboard, integrated or discrete Nvidia GPUs, up to 1TB of storage (less for solid state, more for spindle-based), Ethernet, Wi-Fi and Bluetooth, HDMI and Mini Display ports, USB 3.0, a 4-in-1 multicard reader, battery life of about 6.5 hours and it weighs less than 4 pounds. The price: $849, and it should be available Q3 2012.
Lenovo also announced a bunch of small-business-angled laptops, priced slightly lower than its usual fare.
There’s the ThinkPad Edge S430, which Lenovo says “comprises high style and genuine substance,” packing the latest Intel Core processors and a Thunderbolt port. We’re talking a 14-inch screen in a 1-inch thin chassis, the option to drop in a DVD drive or second hard drive (up to 1TB storage), your choice of Intel integrated or Nvidia Optimus graphics, Dolby Home Theatre v4 (it claims to fix audio playback deficiencies “inherent” to laptop and desktop computers), USB 3.0 ports, “metal accents” and a “soft-touch finish.” It’ll cost $749, says Lenovo.
If you’d rather have the option to choose AMD Fusion or Intel Core processors, there’s the E-series lineup in both 14- and 15-inch flavors, packing integrated or discrete GPUs, “fast boot up,” up to 1TB of storage (plus a solid state option), USB 3.0 ports and a high-res web camera. Lenovo’s priced these to start at $549.
On the smallish side, you’ve got the 11.6-inch and 13.3-inch ThinkPad Edge laptops with either Intel Core or AMD Vision Accelerated processors. And it sounds like the interiors on the mainstream Edge laptops are all “graphite grey,” with the option to outfit the exterior in “Midnight Black, Heatwave Red or Cobalt Blue.” No word on pricing.
And last but not least, there’s the Lenovo B series, an entry-level lineup with Intel or AMD processors starting at $499, but built with upgradeability in mind: Up to 1TB of storage, USB 3.0 ports, an HDMI-out port and a 4-in-1 multicard reader.