The Good The Lenovo ThinkPad X230 fits a full-power third-gen Intel Core i5 processor in a 12.5-inch 3-pounder, and has great battery life and an improved keyboard.
The Bad A bulky, throwback design, tiny touch pad, and a high price tag throw off the equation.
The Bottom Line There may not be a better full-fledged business ultraportable than the ThinkPad X230, but more efficient, less expensive, and thinner ultrabooks are the real future of this category.
Lenovo ThinkPad X230
The time of year has finally come for Intel's latest Ivy Bridge processors to flood into mainstream laptops, after first appearing in high-end quad-core systems. The Lenovo ThinkPad X230 wins the prize for being the first laptop we've seen in 2012 to incorporate a new third-gen Intel Core i5 processor.
Gone is the old Lenovo ThinkPad keyboard: not just here, but in all new ThinkPad models. Instead, a clean raised island-key backlit keyboard has taken its place. Don't worry, this keyboard has been well-tested in other Lenovo laptops already.
This is your cleaner, more modern ThinkPad: not a new ThinkPad, really, but a slightly better and more refined one. It's every bit the high-performing, ever-so-slightly thick road warrior as ever, but in a changing world where MacBook Airs and tinier ultrabooks are gaining ground, one can't help but wonder how much longer laptops like the X230 will be around.
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