thinkpad Helix User review

Discussion in 'Lenovo (IBM)' started by Bergman, Apr 26, 2013.

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  1. Bergman

    Bergman Scribbler - Standard Member

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    Well I took the plunge and became one of the "suckers" as some of you call me and got my new Helix last night. I got the i7 with 8 gig and 256 SSD. I am a business user and professed tablet junkie so I will be comparing it to the following; Surface RT (sold it), Samsung Series 7 slate with Windows 8 (had last year and gave to my son), along with current rigs I have which include the iPad 3, Asus 810, the Thinkpad Tablet 2, and a Dell XPS 12. Yes I am deep in my search for the perfect all-in-one business device.

    I should also say that I am a heavy user of Office, Outlook, and business apps, and I am not a digital artist or much in to multimedia or music on this device. With all that out of the way I will post some continued observations but I have gleaned a ton of info surfing this forum for the last year plus so thought I would give some back to you guys.

    My first post is based on using this less than a day so what I can tell you so far is the following;

    Negatives out of the way first....... screen backlight bleed is the worst I have had on any device I have owned with the possible exception of my first iPad (see list above) which was my first piece of disappointment. with that said, backlight bleed does not bother me much and I rarely look at a black screen, except during initial boot. While it is pretty bad, that is not a showstopper for me by any means. Trackpad two finger scroll needs work. The trackpad is actually very nice and smooth and everything works well except 2 finger scroll is iffy sometimes, and once it stopped completely on me until a reboot. Had a Bios update and lots of updated drivers right out of the box.... which is both good and bad. I lost 30 percent of one of my batteries overnight with the unit in sleep so they have some driver work to do there. I will keep testing this and report any changes. I brought the unit to work this morning and the wireless and sound drivers both took a complete dump. I had to reinstall both drivers to get things back so I will be monitoring that. The loose back door flap on the dock is unprofessional in my opinion and the unit when docked is still a tad top heavy so on my lap in bed it will tend to lean back slightly. If you are on a table it is solid, but in the lap you can tell if you lean it back enough. That said I am never in fear of it tipping over, and that is a minor annoyance.

    Now the positives. I don't really mind the weight honestly as it feels just about the same as my XPS12 and Asus 810. The screen is beautiful...seriously. My Thinkpad Tablet 2 had a great screen and this one is fantastic. The whites are white, clear, bright, just a wonderful screen. the thing is fast, very fast. Boot time is blazing, working on it is a pleasure. The keyboard is typical Thinkpad.... wonderful. I am typing this on it now. Having the pen silo is very nice and the pen works great. It is the exact same size as the Tablet 2 pen 9though they are not interchangeable with a different top). Trackpad is nice and smooth, as soon as they fix the scroll I like the trackpad a lot. Battery life is why I have this, and so far I am pleased. I worked for almost 3 hours last night, put it to sleep without charging, and worked on it for 4.5 hours today until it gave up. Keep in mind I have the screen on FULL brightness since that is just how I personally like it. The meter kept changing based on what I was doing but I have been downloading a ton of stuff, loading apps, office, patches and updates and put it through some pretty rigorous business use so if I can get 6 to 7 hours out of the two batteries I will be overjoyed. Also the dock battery discharges first so it is nice having a full tablet battery when you undock.

    I will keep posting additional observations in the future, but honestly, this one to me at least looks to be a winner. I may have finally found a single machine for all my business and personal needs. Stay tuned.....
     
  2. excalibur1814

    excalibur1814 Scribbler - Standard Member Senior Member

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    Ho does the tablets weight compare to your other tablets? Too heavy, distributed weight or just about ok?
     
  3. Steve S

    Steve S Pen Pro - Senior Member Super Moderator

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    <<...Ho does the tablets weight compare to your other tablets?..>>

    I think he answers that:

    <<...I don't really mind the weight honestly as it feels just about the same as my XPS12 and Asus 810...>>

    <<...unit when docked is still a tad top heavy so on my lap in bed it will tend to lean back slightly...>>
     
  4. cookies4you

    cookies4you Scribbler - Standard Member

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    Can someone with a Helix on-hand check the sRGB and Adobe RGB numbers?

    Color accuracy is pretty important to me, anything with less than 80% of the sRGB is a no-buy.
     
  5. JoeS

    JoeS I'm all ears Senior Member

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    Thanks for posting, I've been looking forward to seeing a Helix review on TPCR. So far most initial impressions seem to be favorable. Solid build, good battery life, not too hot (with one dramatic exception, probably a bad unit). Main gripes seem to be moderate fan noise (fixable with TPFanControl), and the fact that the pen in the silo turns off the digitizer, so you can't conveniently use a second pen. My gripes are (at least looking from the sidelines): no SD card, no eraser on the pen, no backlit keyboard, and no first-party desktop dock. Still, as close to perfect as I've seen. Keep us posted as you find out more.
     
  6. Bergman

    Bergman Scribbler - Standard Member

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    Weight distribution when it is closed is just fine. I f you have felt a Asus 810 with the dock, or an XPS 12, you will find those to be almost exact. If I covered my eyes I am not sure I could tell the difference. I think people who are disappointed in the weight are expecting a tablet only type experience but it is more like an ultrabook with the dock so the weight is as good as we can get for now.
     
  7. Bergman

    Bergman Scribbler - Standard Member

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    I am not sure I know how to do that....... but if someone can guide me I will check it. Also if you are real picky on the monitor there is some screen door effect in play. I have pretty good eyes and it does not bother me honestly but someone else might not like it.
     
  8. Dayton

    Dayton Scribbler - Standard Member

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    That is the negative of an IPS display, really luck of the draw when it comes to the consistency of the backlight. A Yoga I had displayed some really bad clouding / flash-lighting in one corner that it became hard to forget it was there. Hopefully your Helix isn't as bad. Thanks for the impressions.
     
  9. Bergman

    Bergman Scribbler - Standard Member

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    The batteries both fully charged from absolutely dead to 100% in about 2.5 hours. Both batteries full in that time. :). No issues using an external monitor and several Bluetooth devices. Once I got all the drivers updated it seems pretty stable. Will put it through some paces this weekend on sleeping and waking, as well as removing the tablet.
     
  10. Gophynna

    Gophynna Pen Pal - Newbie

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    Thank you for your review Bergman. Can you do some more battery testing in tablet mode as well as tablet+ and regular docked? Can you provide some video or images of how well the inking is on it? Much appreciation!
     
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