Top positive review
101 people found this helpful
on 25 February 2014
Having grown up in a household of clumsy and ham-fisted cavemen, I succeeded in continuing the family tradition of witless destruction by damaging my laptop beyond repair. The old bastard's departure caused little grief, however, as the machine was starting to remind me of my father; incompetent, slow and obnoxiously loud. Fortunately, laptops are not like unwanted fathers, in that they can be easily replaced (I've tried adoption, believe me).
After hours browsing, (and the realisation that I was much too tight-arsed for a macbook) I settled on this little cretin for my web-browsing and time-wasting needs. Delivery was swift and competent, which is more than can be said for many of Amazon's deliverers (S***tylink, I'm looking at you). More importantly, the computer was neatly packaged in sturdy corrugated cardboard, and came completely unblemished.
But the real juicy bits came when I whipped it out and gave it a wangle. And boy did it wangle. Part metallic, part plastic, the build of this chump is sturdier than a body-building ox in a brick s***house. The only gripe I have is that the keyboard bends ever so slightly when typing.
The screen is bright and crisp as a clear winter's dawn. It's not quite a thousand suns, but it's certainly bright enough (with the minor issue of power saving when unplugged - but this can be easily turned off). There is quite a chunky margin (not distractingly so, but there nonetheless), but I suppose this comes with having a touch screen. Speaking of which, the touch is responsive and smooth, like running your fingers through warm cream or swimming in the Greek Mediterranean.
If you have apprehensions over windows 8, I don't think the touch could really work without it. Thankfully this baby comes with 8.1 installed, meaning you have a simple 7-style desktop once you navigate past the "start" menu. Operating 8.1 is best likened to undoing a woman's bra - unnecessarily fiddly at first, but with practice one hand is all you need. Once you get to grips with the whole affair, things really do show themselves to be intuitive and clumsily fun. I'm usually more cynical than a depressed librarian, but I must say I'm being slowly won over by this latest entry by Microsoft. Whether this speaks for the machine rather than the OS, I simply cannot say as I have avoided Win 8 like the plague up until now.
The three "modes" lenovo offers may all have their uses for others, but in my experience the "tent" mode is a pointless distraction. Moreover, the tablet mode does leave the keyboard exposed, but I shouldn't think this will be a problem - this sweetheart is built to take a pounding.
Web browsing is fast, especially considering the snail-pace internet that BT so gracefully provides to us country bumpkins. One annoyance I had was Macaffee, which proved itself to be the fat cousin on a family walk, slowing everything down and pissing me off to no end. As with slow cousins, I recommend immediate culling of Macafee to speed things up considerably.
Finally, a few quick points to round things off and bring an end to this dull prose:
-The speakers surprised me with their quality, which was quite pleasant as I hadn't intended for anything too brilliant. They function well even though mounted on the underside.
-Does get a little warm, and I'm sure the speaker outlets are the only cooling outlets. Stood on a desk on its little rubber feet, this machine should be fine, but I would stick to browsing if it's perching on your lap (no HD pornos or gaming sessions).
-Keyboard can be a little tight if coming from a desktop, but this is a little baby; size considering, the keys are well spaced.
-Trackpad isn't the best, but with the touchscreen navigating is a breeze.
Overall, this bullet bastard is a real cracker. Sturdy, powerful and at the price of 499, well worth the money. I have no doubt that, as the name suggests, this sleek chap will bend over backwards for you.
EDIT (12th April 2014):
As with most products, the true pros and cons of this laptop have become apparent after some weeks' usage. I'll aim to give a comprehensive list of the problems and unexpected benefits of this laptop in the two lists below:
- I have come to notice that, especially when using Google Chrome, black squares will appear in the display when the mode is switched, e.g. from tablet to laptop. This is not enough to make it a nuisance, and they pop out fairly quickly.
- The trackpad can be bloody annoying. The cursor will sometimes drift or not follow what you want it to do. Seeing as the laptop mode is what I mostly use it for, this can be annoying. Be aware, however, that the times this has happened are few and far between (once or twice a week).
- There are a few niggling features that I had to turn off, but then I am an impatient and simple minded man. For one, I had to turn off some mouse pad features, such as swiping (when swiping in from the right of the mouse pad, a settings menu will appear on the right side of the screen. This is mostly the OS's fault)
- The keyboard is one of the best I've typed on, for a laptop (certainly does not beat a good mechanical keyboard, which are one of the most gracious inventions on God's otherwise sh**ty earth). It is almost as good as a Mac laptop keyboard.
- THERE ARE LIGHT SENSORS AT THE TOP OF THE SCREEN. When I discovered this feature I was giddy as a little boy. They cause the screen to adjust brightness depending on the ambient lighting - dark, and the screen will darken, bright and the back-light will get brighter to counter-act this. As I say I am simple minded, so I found this space age tech some what awe inspiring.
- Tablet mode is as sexy as ever. Easy to use, except for small buttons like the close or minimise ones, but a stylus will help with that.
Overall I would still recommend the little chum, and my score of 9/10 still stands. Maybe 8.8. I dunno.