Lenovo’s new ThinkPad X220 outed early

Gets larger display and plenty of Sandy Bridge CPU options

THE FIRST LOT of Sandy Bridge notebooks with dual core processors are finally starting to trickle out and Lenovo’s range of 12.1-inch 12.5-inch ThinkPad’s has made a semi-official appearance today thanks to a couple of PDFs that Lenovo have posted on its website, despite an obvious lack of products on its website. Lenovo will offer a standard model as well as a convertible tablet model, as per with the X201 series.

The slightly larger 12.5-inch screen on both models are still stuck at 1366×768 resolution, but for those concerned with color correctness and improved viewing angles, Lenovo offers an IPS panel option for the X220. The X220 Tablet on the other is only available with the IPS pane and either a 2 finger touch/5 finger gesture or a stylus controller touch screen.

Both models are available with a range of dual core Core i3, i5 and i7 processors ranging from 2.1GHz to 2.7GHz, but no quad core options are available. One decision made by Lenovo that we don’t really follow is that only the X220 with the Core i7 2620M processor will be available with USB 3.0 support and we can’t see any logic to this.

Again, all models are available with up to 8GB of DDR3 RAM, a range of hard drive options from 160 to 320GB or alternatively an SSD from 80 to 160GB where the 80GB model goes in the mini card PCI Express slot in lieu of a WWAN card. A special order solution is also available with a 4GB SSD, although we can’t see this being overly popular with the exception of some really specialized corporate customers.

Other common features between the two models include a DisplayPort connector, three USB 2.0 ports, one full and one half length mini card PCI Express slot and a 720p capable webcam. The X220 also sports a D-sub connector and a 54mm Express Card slot and an SD card reader, all of which aren’t mentioned in the X220 Tablet spec sheet. One of the mini card PCI Express slots are housing the Wi-Fi card and Lenovo is offering a pair of Intel options as well as one with additional WiMAX support.

The X220 weighs in at a starting weight of 1.3kg, although that’s only with a tiny 3-cell battery. Lenovo offers a 6 and a 9-cell battery pack option and the 9-cell unit is meant to be good for up to 15h of usage. If that’s not good enough, then an additional external battery pack can be fitted to the bottom of the X220 which houses a 6-cell pack which together with the 9-cell unit is meant to allow for up to 23h of untethered usage.

The X220 Tablet on the other hand starts at 1.76kg and comes with a 4-cell battery as standard, although Lenovo offers an optional 6-cell battery for this model that is meant to be good for up to 9h of usage. Add the battery slice and it’s meant to be good for up to 18h away from the wall socket combined with the regular 6-cell battery pack. Both models can also be fitted with an optional UltraBase with a built in optical disc burner.

There might be some changes to these specifications, especially in the case of the X220 Tablet model, as some of it doesn’t appear to be quite the final version as there are some discrepancies in the text with regards to the battery life and some of the features. That said, this looks like a solid new range of ultra-portable ThinkPad’s from Lenovo, although we’d expect them to be as suitably expensive as the current range.S|A

PDF link to the X220 spec sheet and the X220 Tablet spec sheet

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