Lenovo ThinkPad Twist review

Price when reviewed

Convertible tablets are nothing new in the business sector, but convertible Ultrabooks certainly are: the ThinkPad Twist is the first we’ve come across.

However, those expecting the usual ThinkPad build quality are likely to be disappointed. The Twist is plasticky, the central hinge is far more cumbersome than the Yoga 13’s double-jointed hinge, and when clipped into the base in tablet mode, the two halves separate at the slightest provocation.

Lenovo ThinkPad Twist

That’s a shame, since the touchscreen is responsive, the 1,366 x 768 IPS panel’s viewing angles are superb, and colours are accurate. The measured brightness of 337cd/m2 keeps the glossy panel legible outdoors, and the contrast ratio of 702:1 is excellent by any standards.

Connectivity strikes just the right balance for business use, too. With two USB 3 ports, mini-DisplayPort, mini-HDMI, an SD card reader, Gigabit Ethernet and a SIM slot for the model with 3G, the Twist is better served than most of the Ultrabooks and hybrids we’ve seen.

Lenovo ThinkPad Twist

As well as a buttonless touchpad there’s also a red trackpoint set in the centre of the Scrabble-tile keyboard. Typing is a joy, but the buttonless touchpad isn’t great – we found the cursor was jittery and prone to jumping across the screen, so we disabled it and used the trackpoint instead.

Performance lowers the tone once again. The Core i5-3317U CPU is no weakling, but the sluggish 500GB hard disk struggles to keep Windows 8 feeling as responsive as SSD-equipped models. With a score of 0.53 in our Real World Benchmarks, and a result of only 5hrs 16mins in our light-use battery tests, the Twist is neither quick nor particularly long-lasting.

Lenovo ThinkPad Twist

Apart from an excellent display and generous connectivity, then, the ThinkPad Twist provides little in the way of excitement. The pricier £999 model, which adds 3G and a speedier SSD, makes the Twist more viable for businesses, but it’s still no award-winner.


Warranty1 yr return to base

Physical specifications

Dimensions313 x 236 x 20mm (WDH)
Travelling weight1.9kg

Processor and memory

ProcessorIntel Core i5-3317U
Motherboard chipsetIntel HM77
RAM capacity4.00GB
Memory typeDDR3
SODIMM sockets free1
SODIMM sockets total2

Screen and video

Screen size12.5in
Resolution screen horizontal1,366
Resolution screen vertical768
Resolution1366 x 768
Graphics chipsetIntel HD Graphics 4000
HDMI outputs1
DisplayPort outputs1


Hard disk usable capacity466GB
Spindle speed5,400RPM
Optical drivenone
Replacement battery price inc VAT£0


Wired adapter speed1,000Mbits/sec
802.11a supportno
802.11b supportyes
802.11g supportyes
802.11 draft-n supportyes
Integrated 3G adapterno
Bluetooth supportyes

Other Features

Wireless hardware on/off switchno
Wireless key-combination switchyes
3.5mm audio jacks1
SD card readeryes
MMC (multimedia card) readeryes
Pointing device typeTouchpad, trackpoint, touchscreen
Integrated microphone?yes
Integrated webcam?yes
Camera megapixel rating0.9mp

Battery and performance tests

Battery life, light use5hr 16min
Overall Real World Benchmark score0.53
Responsiveness score0.56
Media score0.62
Multitasking score0.40

Operating system and software

Operating systemWindows 8 Pro 64-bit
OS familyWindows 8
Recovery methodRecovery partition

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