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Thinkpad Tablet 2 - Initial Impressions

Discussion in 'Lenovo (IBM)' started by noxxle, Dec 31, 2012.

  1. noxxle

    noxxle Scribbler - Standard Member

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    Got mine today. I'll be updating this post with impressions. Feel free to add yours below.

    Currently updating everything. Could take an hour+. First thing I noticed is how awkward it feels to hold the tablet in portrait mode. This will probably be the same for all 16:9 tablets. It does feel noticeably lighter than an ipad 2/3 in portrait mode. Perhaps slightly heavier in landscape mode, due to the length/weight distribution.

    The pixel density is almost the same as the ipad mini. In fact, the width of the screen is the same as the mini when held in portrait mode. Length, top to bottom, appears about 2-3 inches greater than the mini. I'll try to post some pics later.

    Notes (updated frequently):

    • 64gb wifi, Std win8
    • Updating is a very slow process. Plan on spending at least 2 hours updating with Lenovo's system tool and windows' updater
    • The digitizer is not the same as the one included with the x220/230t. It is a smaller, mini version. It has some accuracy issues when held at an angle, moreso near the edges. I haven't tried calibrating it yet.
    • The digitizer can be difficult to remove from the tablet. It isn't spring loaded. I have to pull on it with my nail.
    • Get's pretty warm when plugged in and charging. But, doesn't feel much warmer than a charging ipad.
    • Text is much easier to read compared to the ipad Mini, despite the comparable pixel density. This is probably because fonts scale better in Windows.
    • During CPU-intensive tasks, the cores peak around 35C. Otherwise, they over around 25C. I'm using Coretemp as the gauge. Core Temp *edit* I don't believe CoreTemp is reading the temps accurately.
    • A full size USB port on the tablet is super convenient!
    • Lenovo's updater does not detect all of the latest drivers. Go to the update website to get them.
    • Windows Index Score: Proc:3.2, Mem: 4.6, Graphics: 3.7, Gaming:3.3, Primary HD: 5.6. This score is after updating via Lenovo's utility and through the windows updater. There are newer drivers at Lenovo's website. I'll re-run the indexer after installing the latest drivers.
    • updated the drivers from Lenovo's site and re-ran the indexer. Score is slightly lower. Graphics are 3.5 and gaming is 3.2. Everything else is the same.
    • Coretemp occasionally reports really high temps (45C at idle) after awaking from sleep. Probably a bug. Hard reset fixes.
    • Backplate is plastic. No creaking. Slight bit of flex in certain areas, most notably a couple inches under the Thinkpad logo. Picks up fingerprints easily. Nice grippy texture.
    • During CPU-intensive tasks or gaming, the hottest area is the upper-right corner, where the logo is located.
    • Screen is at least on par with the ipad Mini (to my eyes anyway). The screendoor effect (lines between pixels) is about as noticeable as the Mini. However, text is more readable generally, probably because it scales better. No pixel sub-rendering. I don't think any win8 tablets do this because they are designed to be viewed from all four rotations.
    • the images below do not accurately portray the TPT2's screen quality. The Mini's brightness was set around 66% while the TPT2 was around 33%.
    • Boot times: With fast startup off, power button to welcome is 17-20 seconds, another 5-7 seconds to tiles after entering your password. With fast startup on, power button to welcome is 10 seconds, another 5 seconds to tiles. These times are with the TPM chip disabled. Turning the chip on will add another 3-5 seconds from power button to welcome. This is the case even if you have windows 8 std edition and encryption off (not possible to turn on encryption with std ed.). With the Pro edition and encryption on, boot may be even longer. The chip is enabled by default. You must enter bios to turn it off.
    • Performance is generally snappy with lightweight programs, but lags considerably when multitasking or using cpu-intensive programs. Everything slows to a crawl if you are copying files in the background. Chrome launches instantly, while steam takes 45 seconds to autologin and reach your library/storefront.
    • Preliminary battery tests indicate about 8-8.5 hours of web browsing/emailing/writing. This is with brightness at 50% (200 nits). Then again, my battery gauge might not be accurate. I haven't run it down to zero yet. The gauge drops faster from 100% to 90% than from 90% to 80%.
    • Complete discharge to full takes exactly 5 hours. I left the tablet in sleep mode the entire time. Might be a little bit faster if fully shut down.
    Last edited: Jan 5, 2013
  2. philox

    philox Pen Pal - Newbie

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    I'm not sure but I think I read somewhere that Apple has a patent on the 4:3 display? Itmay be related or not, but surface reviews alsocomplain win 8 works poorly in portrait mode. I've always preferred landscape even on my x series tablets, but I can see how previous ipad users would see the difficulties with portrait mode a problem
    Looking forward to your review.
  3. JoeS

    JoeS I'm all ears Senior Member

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    Looks great, will be perfect for annotation in landscape. Looks like you're in tablet heaven!
    Sent from my Windows 8 device using Board Express
  4. sbl

    sbl Pen Pal - Newbie

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    Looks awesome. Can't wait to receive mine.
  5. bpcooper14

    bpcooper14 Pen Pal - Newbie

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    Looking forward to the information. I just reordered the TPT2 after my initial order was canceled without any notification to me as to why. Stupid issues with addresses apparently.
  6. philox

    philox Pen Pal - Newbie

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    Hi noxxle, thanks for the notes. Here are some questions:

    1) How does the screen look? Does it look noisy like some of the x series tablets?
    2) Do you see a clear improvement in the inking experience compared to the x series? Do you notice if the inking region seems a lot closer to the glass or there's still considerable parallax?
    3) How's the performance opening apps and office programs?
  7. noxxle

    noxxle Scribbler - Standard Member

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    philox, i might have to run these tests tomorrow. Taking me forever to update and install things. Currently playing around with steam to see whether some of my favorite games run.

    Can you clarify what you mean by "noise?" I may not be knowledgeable enough to evaluate the screen quality. What should i be looking for?

    Haven't done ink tests. The cursor does seem quite close to the glass. Can't tell if it's a single pane.
    Last edited: Dec 31, 2012
  8. philox

    philox Pen Pal - Newbie

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    In my x200 series tablet, as it was with the x60 series, the screen was not as clear as in the non tablet version, like if there was some noise in it. That could have been because the glass wasn't glued to the lcd, which it is on the tpt2. If the screen is as clear as the ipad one the problem may have been solved. However, on your pics the tpt2 screen's contrast does seem worse than the ipad- a picture of both with a white background may clarify this.
    Last edited: Dec 31, 2012
  9. noxxle

    noxxle Scribbler - Standard Member

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    The TPT2's screen looks better than the Mini's, at least to my eyes. The screenshots in the original post are of poor quality. Also, I had the TPT2's brightness around 30%, while the Mini was about 66%.
  10. bizhub55

    bizhub55 Pen Pal - Newbie

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    I'm interested in your impressions of build quality. Does it feel solid or more of a plastic feel. I've also ordered a dell latitude 10 and will keeping one for myself and one for my department at work. Need to determine which unit will hold up best as a work system and has the best build quality. As there aren't any real reviews on these yet, your opinion is welcome.

    Thanks for your feedback.
  11. noxxle

    noxxle Scribbler - Standard Member

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    The backplate appears and feels plastic, but no flex or creaking. It has a good grip too. Unfortunately, picks up fingerprints easily.

    *correction* --slight bit of flex in some areas. Most notably a inch or two under the Thinkpad logo on the back.
    Last edited: Dec 31, 2012
  12. Sharky944

    Sharky944 Pen Pal - Newbie

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    I have a couple of questions.

    1: How long does it take for a cold bootup?
    2: How is the handwriting recognition after calibration? What apps are recommended? Could you take a video of you trying it out? I am thinking about purchasing one but it all depends on how well this can be used to take notes.
    3: How long does it take to load normal apps? (Firefox, Office, etc)

    Any videos would be greatly appreciated.
  13. noxxle

    noxxle Scribbler - Standard Member

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    How do you want me to measure a cold boot? From power button to login screen, or to the tiles?

    Handwriting recognition with the default keyboard alt thing has been so-so. Seems to get half of my words wrong. Might be my sloppy handwriting though. Onenote probably has a separate applet for recognition. I haven't tried many notetaking apps yet.

    Launching any web browser is very fast. Takes a second or two. Don't have word installed. Some programs, such as steam, take considerably longer than on my desktop. I think the last time i loaded steam it took at least 20 seconds.
  14. Sharky944

    Sharky944 Pen Pal - Newbie

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    Power button to login screen would be perfect.

    Would this be a decent tablet to use as a note taking device for engineering classes? For instance, writing lots of math, drawing circuit diagrams, etc? I wonder what app would be best.

    I appreciate the feedback!!!
  15. noxxle

    noxxle Scribbler - Standard Member

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    Boot times: With fast startup off, power button to welcome is 17-20 seconds, another 5-7 seconds to tiles after entering your password. With fast startup on, power button to welcome is 10 seconds, another 5 seconds to tiles. These times are with the TPM chip disabled. Turning the chip on will add another 3-5 seconds from power button to welcome. This is the case even if you have windows 8 std edition with encryption off. With encryption on, boot may be even longer.
  16. manuelcalavera

    manuelcalavera Scribbler - Standard Member

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    I think one of the most important concerns is the differences in inking experience between TPT2, Dell latitude 10 and Samsung 500T.
  17. rzp2003

    rzp2003 Scribbler - Standard Member

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    this does not sound too bad. Does it come with many Lenovo bloatware?
  18. noxxle

    noxxle Scribbler - Standard Member

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    Not much lenovo bloatware, unless it is all hidden running in the background and I am not noticing it.

    Still haven't installed any inking programs. Frankly, installing things can be a royal pain. Takes a long time, slows everything else down, etc.

    Out of curiosity, why would inking be any different on the TPT2 compared to other clover trail tablets? They are all using similar hardware.
  19. philox

    philox Pen Pal - Newbie

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    Here are some reasons

    1) Digitizer hardware may be different- looks like tpt2 used Wacom
    2) Glass may or not be bonded to the lcd ( it is on the tpt2)
    3) performance on the edges/ corners may differ

    I think you can probably ink using paint, on the pdf reader or on a reader version of the website. No need to install office apps.
  20. noxxle

    noxxle Scribbler - Standard Member

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    Pens is very accurate in MS paint. Very responsive, with only a slight sluggishness when using a wide brush. The edges are more accurate than an x220t that I tested over a year ago. However, there are definitely some accuracy issues, even after calibrating. The least accurate edges for me are the left and top. This is with the tablet held in landscape mode, windows button at the bottom.
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