Lenovo’s refreshed ThinkPads are lighter and thinner than ever

Lenovo's taking the 2018 Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas as an opportunity to introduce a complete refresh of the Thinkpad laptop series. CES doesn't actually start until next week, but Lenovo's already showing its hand. Updated ThinkPad X- and T-series models are complemented with an all-new ThinkPad L series.

Lenovo ThinkPad X380 Yoga

All of the new models have a few things in common. Lenovo's swapped out the CPUs in all the machines for eighth-generation Intel Core chips. The company doesn't say it, but in this context that means Kaby Lake-R quad-core, eight-thread units. Lenovo's also moved to USB Type-C charging for all of its ThinkPads in this latest line-up. In a change sure to please privacy advocates, Lenovo's new laptops include physical shutters to cover up the built-in webcams.

Lenovo ThinkPad X280

The new ThinkPad X models are the X280 and the X380 Yoga. Lenovo says the X280 is 20% lighter and 15% thinner than the X270 that came before it. As you'd expect, the X380 Yoga is a convertible model, and it includes an Active Pen and Windows Hello support. Both models support Rapid Charge, and Lenovo says you can juice up the laptops to 80% in an hour. The company claims that a fully-charged X280 will last for 16.6 hours, while the convertible X380 Yoga gets a 13.6 hours figure.

Lenovo ThinkPad T480s

Over in the corporate-focused ThinkPad T family, we have the T480, the T480s, and the T580. Lenovo's release is extremely short on details, but it does say that these models will have discrete graphics options available, and that the T580 will have a 4K display option. With extended batteries, Lenovo says that the new ThinkPad Ts can offer up to 27 hours of runtime. T480s are particularly lightweight and come in under 3 lb (1.36 kg)—pretty light for business laptops.

Lenovo ThinkPad L580

The ThinkPad L series has been completely replaced this time around. The ThinkPad L380, L380 Yoga, L480, and L580 are billed as mainstream value laptops. The series includes models with 13", 14", and 15" displays, with multi-touch functionality as an optional extra. The ThinkPad L580 will apparently have an option for discrete graphics from AMD, too.

Lenovo Tablet 10

Lenovo's also releasing a 10" detachable 2-in-1, simply called the Lenovo Tablet 10. It'll run Windows 10 on a "Celeron N series" CPU—most likely a relative of the Gemini Lake-based Celeron N4000 if we were to guess. The Tablet 10 will include a fingerprint reader, a rechargeable pen, and LTE support. Lenovo says its battery will last up to 9 hours, too.

Finally, there's a new ThinkPad docking station. The ThinkPad Ultra Docking Station will accept "most 12, 14, and 15-inch ThinkPads," and it has a simple slide-to-connect design. Lenovo says it provides "complete connectivity options," but the company declined to elaborate on exactly what those might be.

Lenovo says the ThinkPad X280 will start at $999, and the X380 Yoga will start at $1459. The company prices the ThinkPad T480 at $989, the T480s at $1269, and the T580 at $1079. In the L-series ThinkPads, the L380 will start at $449, the L380 Yoga will start at $449, the L480 will start from $779, and the L580 will run you at least $769. Lenovo's 10" tablet hasn't been priced yet, but the docking station will come in three forms: Basic 90W for $199, Pro 135W for $249, and Ultra 135W for $299. All of this hardware should be available later this month. 

Comments closed
    • barich
    • 2 years ago

    No news on a new X1 Carbon yet, which is what I’ve been waiting for. Ah well, my W520 brick will last a while longer.

      • Anonymous Coward
      • 2 years ago

      I have both a W520 & W530 at hand, and its quite a shock to go to the W520 keyboard after some time on the W530. You might miss it.

        • barich
        • 2 years ago

        Oh, I’m sure I’ll miss the keyboard, but I won’t miss the size or weight. I’ve wanted something smaller/lighter, but I refuse to drop a ton of money without getting something that outperforms what I have in effectively all scenarios. The quad-core Kaby Lake-R CPUs finally do so in a 15W envelope.

    • Anonymous Coward
    • 2 years ago

    A [i<]complete[/i<] refresh they say... looking forward to seeing what they do with the "not thin and not light" end of things. I get tired of hearing so much about thin and light, tell me about powerful and durable.

    • Usacomp2k3
    • 2 years ago

    Maybe they’ll offer a dock with more than two digital video outputs. If so, I’ll buy one the day it is released. I’m currently not using the dock on my p51 because I can only use two screens with it. So whenever I “dock” I plug in the Thunderbolt cable (goes to a TB->2xDP dongle), network, USB hub, power, and mini-DP.

    • Magic Hate Ball
    • 2 years ago

    I love everything about Lenovo hardware at a practical level….

    EXCEPT FOR THE FN KEY IN THE CORNER INSTEAD OF THE CTRL KEY!

    I hate it on my work laptop.

      • caconym
      • 2 years ago

      It’s usually switchable in the BIOS (if you have access to the BIOS)

        • Magic Hate Ball
        • 2 years ago

        I’ll check that in the morning.

        I use shortcut keys religiously and when go I from docked on a normal keyboard to that abomination switcheroo when mobile, it drives me nuts!

      • chuckula
      • 2 years ago

      I can’t stand that FN key either.

        • mcarson09
        • 2 years ago

        It’s an abomination!

        You also get an up vote from me for once ;D

      • mtruchado
      • 2 years ago

      best comment of the year so far

      • trackerben
      • 2 years ago

      Same. +1

    • mudcore
    • 2 years ago

    T480s sounds awesome on paper and I appreciate that they kept it basically the same overall size and weight as the T470s but they bumped up the battery size and now include a dGPU option with the MX150. Plus a real selection of ports! I’ll have to check out the screen and touchpad in person, these have been my bigger issues with most T series Thinkpads.

      • tipoo
      • 2 years ago

      Thank the Silicon Gods for Lenovo ditching the 940MX at last too. The MX150 was so much better in the same wattage. They’re no gaming machines but the GPU matters to so much now.

    • tipoo
    • 2 years ago

    Thank goodness, good timing. Got bought out by a company that was only giving the T470S or the latest model in its line out to everyone, despite my roll being very CPU bound. At least I can skip the dual core ULV in that for the quad core in the T480S.

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