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Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon (2018, 2019) - An overview of all rumours, dates, configurations, and reviews

The ThinkPad X1 Carbon is Lenovo’s flagship for business users and enthusiasts who have the highest expectations of their ultra-portable laptops. This article covers all important information about the current ThinkPad X1 Carbon 2018 and any speculations or rumours about successors.
Benjamin Herzig (translated by Alex Alderson), 🇩🇪

Changelog

10.09.2018: Current information about the Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon 2019 added.

Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon 2019 (expected) (ThinkPad X1 Carbon 2019 Series)
Processor
Intel Core i7-8650U 4 x 1.9 - 4.2 GHz, Kaby Lake Refresh
Graphics adapter
Memory
16384 MB 
, LPDDR3
Display
14 inch , 2560 x 1440 pixel 210 PPI, LTPS-HDR, glossy: no
Storage
up to 1 TB PCIe-SSD
Battery
Lithium-Polymer
Operating System
Microsoft Windows 10 Pro 64 Bit
Additional features
Keyboard Light: yes, 36 Months Warranty
Note: The manufacturer may use components from different suppliers including display panels, drives or memory sticks with similar specifications.

 

Rumours, Dates & Release

Lenovo released the ThinkPad X1 Carbon in 2012 and marked the introduction of the first true “Ultrabook” in the venerable ThinkPad series. Since then, the X1 Carbon has been at the cutting edge of the ThinkPad series’ ultra-portable offerings and is now on its sixth iteration. 

Lenovo launched the sixth generation of the ThinkPad X1 Carbon in spring this year, shortly after announcing the device at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in January 2018. 

The timing of the sixth generation’s announcement is typical of X1 Carbon launches too. Lenovo has announced all previous iterations of the device at CES except for the first generation, so it would make sense for the seventh X1 Carbon to be announced at CES 2019 in January next year. Speculatively, we expect to see Lenovo unveil the X1 Carbon 2019 in Las Vegas between January 8-11, 2019.

Concrete rumours about the connectivity of the next X1 Carbon are still scarce. Lenovo will likely equip the device with a choice of Intel’s latest “Whiskey Lake” generation processors, probably either the Core i5-8265U or the Core i7-8565U. Notably, these 15 W CPUs will pick an integrated Wi-Fi module, the first Intel Core processors to do so.

Aside from a probable CPU upgrade, Lenovo could also introduce a new design. Lenovo last redesigned the X1 Carbon in 2017, with the 2018 model being more of an updated X1 Carbon 2017. It could be possible that we see another iteration based on the 2017 design, but Lenovo has until now never relied upon the same X1 Carbon design for more than two years. Hence, it is time for a newly designed X1 Carbon.

Current Rumours

Rumor

The Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon 2021?

ThinkPad X1 Yoga & X1 Carbon 2021 leak: Renders supposedly show the new ThinkPad flagships with 16:10 screens

Through the Chinese site Baidu, we may have gotten the first pictures and spec-info on the next gen ThinkPad X1 Carbon Gen 9 and ThinkPad X1 Yoga Gen 6. Both appear to be redesigned and are apparently featuring 16:10 screens.
Benjamin Herzig, Tue, 06 Oct 2020 00:50:00 +0200
A snippet of the full T15g Gen 1 PSREF. (Source: Lenovo)

Lenovo posts a full product specs reference for the ThinkPad T15g Gen 1 with the possible configurations available on its launch

The anticipated first-gen T15g is currently thought of as the "gamer's ThinkPad", due to the RTX 20-series graphics that, as some leaks have attested, is destined for this machine. Its maker Lenovo may have put this beyond a doubt...
Deirdre O'Donnell, Sat, 05 Sep 2020 20:43:00 +0200
Lenovo ThinkPad: X1 Titanium, X1 Nano & ThinkPad X12 leak on Verizon's website

Lenovo ThinkPad: X1 Titanium, X1 Nano & ThinkPad X12 leak on Verizon's website

We knew before that Lenovo has three upcoming ThinkPad devices this fall: The ThinkPad X1 Titanium, ThinkPad X1 Nano and ThinkPad X12. All three have been leaked again today - by Verizon.
Benjamin Herzig, Wed, 02 Sep 2020 13:00:00 +0200
Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Next & ThinkPad X1 Nano: What is Lenovo planning?

Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Next & ThinkPad X1 Nano: What is Lenovo planning?

We could soon see Lenovo ThinkPads powered by the Ryzen 4000 APUs.

Lenovo ThinkPad X13 and ThinkPad T14 powered by AMD Ryzen 4000 APUs may be around the corner

Lenovo ThinkPad 2019 leak: Data-sheets of the redesigned ThinkPads T490, T490s & T590 have been leaked (Pictured: ThinkPad T490 Healthcare Edition)

Lenovo ThinkPad 2019 leak: Data-sheets of the redesigned ThinkPads T490, T490s & T590 have been leaked

Lenovo ThinkPad P1: Additional pictures of the upcoming workstation have surfaced

Lenovo ThinkPad P1: Additional pictures of the upcoming workstation have surfaced

Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Extreme: Upcoming XPS 15 competitor has been leaked (pictured is the ThinkPad X1 Carbon)

Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Extreme: Upcoming Dell XPS 15 competitor has been leaked

Lenovo wants to release a new 15-inch ThinkPad without a numblock (pictured: ThinkPad T530)

Lenovo wants to release a new 15-inch ThinkPad without a numpad

Lenovo: ThinkPad A285 / A485 with Ryzen Mobile will likely be released in the third quarter (pictured: ThinkPad A275)

Lenovo: ThinkPad A285 / A485 will likely be released in the third quarter

Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon 2018 Reviews

The X1 Carbon 2018 has been reviewed extensively, being one of the most attractive models in the ThinkPad series. We have currently reviewed two variants of the device; the base model with an Intel Core i5-8350U processor and a Full HD display along with the Core i7-8550U and QHD HDR display equipped flagship model.

Historically, the X1 Carbon has had excellent input devices. The sixth generation excels in other ways too, particularly with its robust yet lightweight case and its plentiful ports. The X1 Carbon 2018’s selection of ports is even more impressive too considering that it is a 14-inch notebook.

Moreover, the 2018 edition has numerous displays options including a Full HD touchscreen option and the excellent, albeit gloss, QHD HDR display. The device makes good use of its processors too, while the ample battery life leaves little room for criticism. There are drawbacks though like the awkwardly placed microSD card slot, the absent WWAN ready option and the lack of a full-size RJ45 Ethernet port. We also criticised the Core i7-8550U model for its high temperatures under load and its overzealous fan. By contrast, the Core i5-8350U equipped model has neither of these issues.

Notebookcheck reviews

Jul 24
Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon 2020 Business-Laptop Review: 4K display costs battery runtime

86% Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon 2020 Business-Laptop Review: 4K display costs battery runtime

More pixels including PWM flickering. Lenovo also offers the 2020 ThinkPad X1 Carbon with an optional glossy 4K screen, which is supposed to reach a brightness of 500 nits and also supports HDR contents. but how does the panel affect the battery runtime of the compact business laptop?
Intel Core i7-10510U | Intel UHD Graphics 620 | 14" | 1.1 kg
Andreas Osthoff, Fri, 24 Jul 2020 12:28:00 +0200
Jul 7
Dell Latitude 7410 Laptop Review: The Lenovo X1 Carbon Has Met Its Match

89% Dell Latitude 7410 Laptop Review: The Lenovo X1 Carbon Has Met Its Match

Getting down to business. Dell's latest 14-inch business subnotebook feels like the most refined Latitude laptop in years. But for what you're paying, we think it could use a little more auxiliary features to better reflect the high price.
Intel Core i7-10610U | Intel UHD Graphics 620 | 14" | 1.4 kg
Allen Ngo, Tue, 07 Jul 2020 18:46:00 +0200
Jul 3
ThinkPad X1 Carbon 2020 Review: Familiar business laptop with a new power adapter

90% ThinkPad X1 Carbon 2020 Review: Familiar business laptop with a new power adapter

Minor Update. Lenovo shows the 8th generation of its business flagship ThinkPad X1 Carbon. However, it is just a very small update and it looks like you only get a new Intel Comet Lake-U processor at first. AMD processors are not planned for this generation of the expensive business notebook.
Intel Core i7-10510U | Intel UHD Graphics 620 | 14" | 1.1 kg
Andreas Osthoff, Fri, 03 Jul 2020 15:56:00 +0200
Apr 14
Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Yoga 4th Gen Core i7 Convertible Review: A ThinkPad X1 Carbon in Disguise

90% Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Yoga 4th Gen Core i7 Convertible Review: A ThinkPad X1 Carbon in Disguise

Mar 30
Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon G7 2020 Laptop Review: Same Look, New Processor

89% Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon G7 2020 Laptop Review: Same Look, New Processor

Design & Features – Pictures and Videos

Undoubtedly, the most notable change of the last two X1 Carbon generations compared to previous models has been the dramatically smaller display bezels. The X1 Carbon is currently the most compact 14-inch ThinkPad device that Lenovo sells and weighs 1.13 kg thanks to its use of lightweight and premium materials like magnesium and a carbon fibre plastic composite. The X1 Carbon 2018 is the lightest 14-inch business notebook that we have tested and weighs the same as the smaller 12-inch ThinkPad X280.

Lenovo has particularly focussed on the X1 Carbon’s display options with the release of the sixth generation with previous models typically having disappointingly few display options. The 2018 edition has an impressive 14-inch QHD HDR display that has vivid colours and high maximum brightness, although the panel has a glossy finish. Lenovo also introduced a matte Full HD touchscreen display too.

Business features are also a large focus of the X1 Carbon including an optional WWAN module. All X1 Carbon models have Lenovo’s new mechanical side docking port, which is compatible with the same docking stations as those which the T480s and X280 support.

Model Variants & Pricing

There are two ways for the average consumer to buy a ThinkPad; either directly from Lenovo or one of the many third-party suppliers. Purchasing from Lenovo allows for greater flexibility as you can customise your device, while other suppliers stock just pre-configured devices. Lenovo separates X1 Carbon models by the processors and displays that are used. RAM is also an important consideration though as you cannot subsequently upgrade it; all models have RAM that is soldered to the motherboard. 

However, the M.2-2280 SSD is replaceable, as is the Wi-Fi card. Other differences between models include WWAN capabilities, a Windows Hello infrared camera and case colour; the X1 Carbon 2018 comes in either black or silver.

The X1 Carbon 2018 starts at €1,600 and rises to over €2,500 for the Intel Core i7-8650U model with a QHD HDR display, 16 GB RAM, 1 TB SSD and WWAN capabilities.

Possible Configurations

  • CPU: Intel Core i5-8250U, Core i5-8350U, Core i7-8550U, Core i7-8650U
  • RAM: 8 GB or 16 GB - LPPDDR3 2,133 MHz
  • SSD: 256 GB, 512 GB or 1 TB PCIe M.2-2280 SSD
  • Display: 14-inch IPS LCD – Matte options: Full HD (1,920 x 1,080) Full HD touch or QHD (2,560 x 1,440); each 300 – Glossy option: QHD HDR Low Temperature Polysilicon (LTPS)
  • OS: Windows 10 Home (64-bit) or Windows 10 Pro (64-bit)
  • Warranty: Three-years standard with on-site service, extendable up to five-years

Pricecompare

Pricecompare

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Further Information about the Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon

Oct 12
First business chromebook in blue: The Lenovo ThinkPad C13 Yoga Chromebook

First business chromebook in blue: The Lenovo ThinkPad C13 Yoga Chromebook

Chromebooks with Google's ChromeOS have been enjoying some popularity in the education sector. It seems that Google is making inroads in the business sector as well now, as some companies transition to the simpler Google OS. Lenov...
Benjamin Herzig, Mon, 12 Oct 2020 17:39:00 +0200
Oct 6
The Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon 2021?

ThinkPad X1 Yoga & X1 Carbon 2021 leak: Renders supposedly show the new ThinkPad flagships with 16:10 screens

Through the Chinese site Baidu, we may have gotten the first pictures and spec-info on the next gen ThinkPad X1 Carbon Gen 9 and ThinkPad X1 Yoga Gen 6. Both appear to be redesigned and are apparently featuring 16:10 screens.
Benjamin Herzig, Tue, 06 Oct 2020 00:50:00 +0200
Oct 5
Barely offers any additional value compared to the predecessor: The ThinkPad X13 Yoga with Comet Lake CPU

ThinkPad X13 Yoga: Intel update wouldn't have been necessary this year

As with the Lenovo ThinkPad X13, the performance increase gained through Comet Lake on the ThinkPad X13 Yoga is marginal compared to its predecessor. Therefore,...
Intel Core i7-10510U | Intel UHD Graphics 620 | 13.3" | 1.3 kg
Mike Wobker, Mon, 05 Oct 2020 21:13:00 +0200
Oct 3
Lenovo ThinkPad X13 Yoga 20SX0004GE

88% Lenovo ThinkPad X13 Yoga in review: Extensively equipped business convertible

Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Nano: Extremely lightweight 16:10 ThinkPad goes up against Dell XPS 13 9310

Update | Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Nano: Extremely lightweight 16:10 ThinkPad goes up against Dell XPS 13 9310

Sep 29
First PC with a foldable screen: Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Fold is pre-orderable now

First PC with a foldable screen: Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Fold is pre-orderable now

Lenovo ThinkPad E14 Gen 2 & E15 Gen 2: First affordable Tiger Lake ThinkPads with Thunderbolt 4

Lenovo ThinkPad E14 Gen 2 & E15 Gen 2: First affordable Tiger Lake ThinkPads with Thunderbolt

Sep 23
Lenovo announces a ThinkPad X1 event for September 29th

Lenovo announces a ThinkPad X1 event for September 29th

Sep 19
Lenovo may have some good prices on X1 Carbons this weekend. (Source: Lenovo)

Deal | Save about US$1000 on a new-ish ThinkPad X1 Carbon

Sep 17
Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Titanium & X1 Nano make an appearance on Youtube

Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Titanium & X1 Nano make an appearance on Youtube

Sep 5
A snippet of the full T15g Gen 1 PSREF. (Source: Lenovo)

Lenovo posts a full product specs reference for the ThinkPad T15g Gen 1 with the possible configurations available on its launch

Sep 3
The Lenovo ThinkPad E14 AMD is the best E ThinkPad till now

The Lenovo ThinkPad E14 AMD is the best E ThinkPad till now

Sep 2
Lenovo ThinkPad: X1 Titanium, X1 Nano & ThinkPad X12 leak on Verizon's website

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Aug 31
Lenovo ThinkPad E14 Gen 2 laptop review: Affordable and fast thanks to AMD Renoir

86% Lenovo ThinkPad E14 Gen 2 laptop review: Affordable and fast thanks to AMD Renoir

Aug 28
Lenovo will release the ThinkPad X1 Fold this fall. (Image source: Lenovo)

The ThinkPad X1 Fold is launching this fall; Lenovo offers a look at the inside of its first folding laptop

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> Notebook / Laptop Reviews and News > Reviews > Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon (2018, 2019) - An overview of all rumours, dates, configurations, and reviews
Benjamin Herzig, 2018-10- 9 (Update: 2019-04-30)
Benjamin Herzig
Editor of the original article: Benjamin Herzig - Editor
In 2010 I started to get more and more involved with technology, especially notebooks have been my passion ever since. Of course I came across the detailed tests of Notebookcheck very quickly. With time I learned more and more about notebooks and started writing small reviews about notebooks in forums and blog pages. To earn some extra money during my studies I turned my hobby into my profession and joined the team of Notebookcheck in 2016. My personal interest is especially in business notebooks.