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Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Extreme GEN 4 16" Laptop (2021)

MSRP 2099 EURNEX score 85%

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Product Overview

Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Extreme GEN 4 is a premium 16-inch ultra-portable laptop powered by 11th-gen Intel Tiger Lake processors up to i9 and NVIDIA RTX 30-series graphics up to RTX 3080.
Unlike the previous X1 Extremes, the GEN 4 model adopts the 16:10 aspect ratio. This change allows Lenovo to offer a larger viewing area in a chassis that is more compact. As it has always been the case, the new X1 Extreme shares the same chassis with the ThinkPad P1 GEN 4. While it keeps ThinkPad's classic deep black, there is an optional exposed woven carbon fiber design on the top cover.
An implication of the change in aspect ratio is that the new X1 Extreme drops the OLED display option but receives a WQUXGA / 4K+ IPS panel with 100% Adobe RGB coverage in its place. It also adds optional 5G WWAN wireless connectivity, which is a first for the X1 Extreme series. WiFi 6E and Bluetooth 5.2 are also part of the upgrade.
Last but not least, FHD webcams finally make their way to ThinkPad X1 series in both conventional and Hybrid IR (for Windows Hello) guises.

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Ratings

What we found**

Pros
  • Great performance for a 15-inch laptop
  • Bright 16:10 display with Dolby Vision
  • Comfortable keyboard
  • Good battery life
Cons
  • Not as powerful as the XPS 15

What external reviewers found***

NEX score: 85% (not directly comparable across industries)
Pros
  • Excellent build quality
  • Fantastic 1080p webcam
  • Great speakers
  • Great battery life
Cons
  • Poor battery life
  • Poor webcam privacy
  • No IR camera option
  • No Thunderbolt 3 port
  • High power consumption
  • No USB Type-C ports
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Price Comparison (incl. referral links)*

Specifications

Variants:
WQUXGA
WQXGA

Connectivity

Ports
2x Thunderbolt 4 + 2x USB 3.2 Gen1 + 1x HDMI 2.0/2.1 + 1x SD + 1x Audio combo
Wireless Connectivity
WiFi 6/6E + Bluetooth 5.2 + NFC + optional 5G / 4G LTE WWAN

Construction

Battery | Capacity
90 Wh
Camera | Front
FHD camera with webcam privacy shutter, optional FHD hybrid IR camera with webcam privacy shutter
Colors
Deep Black, optional Carbon-Fiber Weave on top cover
Microphone
Dual far-field mic
Speakers
User-facing Dolby ATMOS Speaker System

Dimensions

Size | Depth
253.8 mm / 9.99"
Size | Height
17.7 mm / 0.78"
Size | Width
359.5 mm / 14.13"
Weight
From 1.814 kg / 3.999 lbs

Display

Aspect Ratio
16:10
WQUXGABrightness
600 nits
WQXGABrightness
400 nits
Display Diagonal
16"
Display Type
IPS matte or touch, low blue light
WQUXGAGamut
100% Adobe
WQXGAGamut
100% sRGB
Resolution
WQXGA / QHD+ (2560x1600) or WQUXGA / UHD+ (3840x2400)

Function

Fast Charging
Rapid Charge
Graphics
Integrated Intel UHD, NVIDIA RTX 3050 Ti, RTX 3060, RTX 3070, or RTX 3080
WQUXGAHDR
HDR400, Dolby Vision HDR
Keyboard Backlight
Yes
Operating System
Windows 10
Processor
Up to 11th-gen Intel Core i9 Tiger Lake
Security
DTPM 2.0, Touch Fingerprint Reader, Self-healing BIOS, Webcam privacy shutter, optional Windows Hello
SIM
Optional 4G LTE or 5G
Touchpad
Redesigned TouchPad (115mm x 61mm / 4.53" x 2.40")

Performance

Battery Life
Up to 10.7 hours
Durability
MIL-STD-810G
Key Travel
1.5 mm
Memory | Capacity
Up to 64 GB (2x SO-DIMMs)
Memory | Type
DDR4 3200 MHz
Power Supply
135, 170, or 230 W
Storage
Up to 4TB total, 2x M.2 NVMe PCIe Gen4 SSD

Production

Accessory
Optional ThinkPad Pen Pro with Wacom AES 2.0 pen support
Availability
2021-08
Debut
2021-06 (MWC 2021)
Made In
China

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External Reviews

arstechnica[1]

Sentiment Score 84%
Reviewers from arstechnica have found the following***:
Lenovo publishes a detailed, illustrated service manual for the laptop, just as Dell does for the XPS 15 9510. Both laptops weigh about the same, but the ThinkPad has a slightly larger screen and includes full-size USB-A and HDMI ports. You have to choose between peak performance and lower temperatures by toggling Windows’ power mode.
Find the original article here.
Pros
  • Comfortable keyboard and touchpad
  • Comfortable 16:10 screen
  • Good battery life
Cons
  • More expensive than the XPS 15 9510
  • No IR camera option

gizmodo[2]

Sentiment Score 93%
Reviewers from gizmodo have found the following***:
The ThinkPad X1 Extreme was already a great system for people who needed a powerful and sturdy mobile workhorse. For this year's refresh, Lenovo has made pretty much everything better while still cutting down on thickness and giving the laptop a big boost in performance. Lenovo's new line of Lenovo Go accessories will begin rolling out in July, starting with Lenovo's wireless mice.
Find the original article here.
Pros
  • Gorgeous new design
  • Lots of connectivity options
  • Great battery life
Cons
  • No 4k OLED display

digitaltrends[3]

Sentiment Score 75%
Reviewers from digitaltrends have found the following***:
The ThinkPad X1 Extreme Gen 4 has a 90 watt-hour battery, which is a lot. The 16-inch WQXGA display should get better battery life than the UHD+ version, but the components aren't terribly energy-efficient. The Dell XPS 15 is a solid alternative in terms of its aesthetic and build quality.
Find the original article here.
Pros
  • Beautiful 16-inch WQXGA display
  • Excellent keyboard and touchpad
  • Excellent build quality
Cons
  • Poor battery life
  • Poor webcam privacy

laptopmag[4]

Sentiment Score 93%
Reviewers from laptopmag have found the following***:
The ThinkPad X1 Extreme Gen 4 is designed for professional workloads. It has enough horsepower to handle some gaming, too. The webcam renders color impressively well, picking up on different reddish tones. The laptop market is awash with 720p webcams, so it was a breath of fresh air.
Find the original article here.
Pros
  • Fantastic 1080p webcam
  • Comfortable keyboard and touchpad
  • Good battery life
Cons
  • Lacks a lot of bloatware

notebookcheck[5]

Sentiment Score 79%
Reviewers from notebookcheck have found the following***:
The X1 Extreme G4 does not have any temperature problems during everyday tasks and light workloads. We can measure more than 50 °C at hotspots on the bottom and the temperatures are even a bit higher during gaming, where the fan speed is a bit lower. The battery runtime clearly suffers from the high power consumption of the 4K panel and the results are once again comparable to the ThinkPad P1 G4. The cooling solution is definitely the limiting factor here.
Find the original article here.
Pros
  • Matte 4K display
  • Very good battery life
  • High-quality case
Cons
  • High power consumption
  • No Thunderbolt 3
  • No USB Type-C ports

notebookcheck[6]

Sentiment Score 82%
Reviewers from notebookcheck have found the following***:
The ThinkPad X1 Extreme 2021 is the first ThinkPad with a 16-inch display. The new model is clearly better for working because the screen is simply more spacious. Other improvements include the speakers, which are located on the top now, and the 1080p webcam. A specific problem of the 4K touch configuration that we reviewed is also the below-average battery life.
Find the original article here.
Pros
  • High-quality 4K UHD display
  • Improved keyboard and touchpad
  • Good battery life
Cons
  • Below-average CPU performance
  • Only one USB Type-C port

pcmag[7]

Sentiment Score 86%
Reviewers from pcmag have found the following***:
The Lenovo X1 Extreme Gen 4 is a sensational desktop replacement for power users. It's not intended to be a gaming laptop, but it's a fine choice for image or video editing. The Dell Inspiron 16 Plus is barely an Editors' Choice because its competition is so formidable.
Find the original article here.
Pros
  • Sleek, light design
  • Excellent battery life
  • High-refresh-rate 1440p screen
Cons
  • No Thunderbolt 3 port

tomshardware[8]

Sentiment Score 87%
Reviewers from tomshardware have found the following***:
The ThinkPad X1 Extreme Gen 4 is a powerful machine with a bright, 16:10 display and surprisingly solid Dolby Atmos audio. It lasted for 7 hours and 50 minutes on our battery test, which browses the web and streams videos. The webcam has a built-in cover, dubbed the ThinkShutter, which covers the lens but doesn't cut power to the camera.
Find the original article here.
Pros
  • Bright, 16:10 display
  • Dolby Vision and Dolby Atmos support
  • Good battery life
Cons
  • Expensive for what you get

wired[9]

Sentiment Score 88%
Reviewers from wired have found the following***:
The X1 Extreme has a new 16-inch display, with its 16:10 aspect ratio. The lack of an OLED panel is disappointing, but the screen I used is fantastic. The Core i7 model I tested features a GeForce RTX 3060 graphics card, 16 gigabytes of RAM, and a 512-gigabyte SSD.
Find the original article here.
Pros
  • Gorgeous 16:10 screen
  • 4K resolution
  • Great speakers
Cons
  • Battery life could be better
  • No full-size SD card slot

User Reviews

References

1. ^ Review: Lenovo’s ThinkPad X1 Extreme Gen 4 is a powerful laptop with heat problems. [arstechnica]. https://arstechnica.com/gadgets/2021/12/review-lenovos-thinkpad-x1-extreme-gen-4-is-a-powerful-laptop-with-heat-problems/. 2021-12-17. Retrieved 2021-12-26.
2. ^ Lenovo's Revamped ThinkPad X1 Extreme Is Now Slimmer and Way More Powerful. [gizmodo]. https://gizmodo.com/lenovos-revamped-thinkpad-x1-extreme-is-now-slimmer-and-1847152706. 2021-06-23. Retrieved 2021-06-24.
3. ^ Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Extreme Gen 4 Review: Fast but not flawless. [digitaltrends]. https://www.digitaltrends.com/laptop-reviews/lenovo-thinkpad-x1-extreme-gen-4-review/. 2021-09-23. Retrieved 2021-09-25.
4. ^ Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Extreme Gen 4 review: Is it better than the Dell XPS 15?. [laptopmag]. https://www.laptopmag.com/reviews/lenovo-thinkpad-x1-extreme-gen-4. 2021-10-31. Retrieved 2021-11-19.
5. ^ Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Extreme G4 Review: The best Multimedia Laptop thanks to Core i9 and RTX 3080?. [notebookcheck]. https://www.notebookcheck.net/Lenovo-ThinkPad-X1-Extreme-G4-Review-The-best-Multimedia-Laptop-thanks-to-Core-i9-and-RTX-3080.588585.0.html. 2021-12-24. Retrieved 2021-12-26.
6. ^ Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Extreme Gen 4 laptop review: Performance flagship with 16:10 touchscreen. [notebookcheck]. https://www.notebookcheck.net/Lenovo-ThinkPad-X1-Extreme-Gen-4-laptop-review-Performance-flagship-with-16-10-touchscreen.578922.0.html. 2021-11-18. Retrieved 2021-11-19.
7. ^ Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Extreme Gen 4 Review. [pcmag]. https://www.pcmag.com/reviews/lenovo-thinkpad-x1-extreme-gen-4. 2021-09-16. Retrieved 2021-09-16.
8. ^ Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Extreme Gen 4 Review: Bigger (Screen) Is Better. [tomshardware]. https://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/lenovo-thinkpad-x1-extreme-gen-4. 2021-09-14. Retrieved 2021-09-16.
9. ^ Review: Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Extreme Gen 4. [wired]. https://www.wired.com/review/lenovo-thinkpad-x1-extreme/. 2021-11-05. Retrieved 2021-11-19.

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