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Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon 2019 with Full HD laptop review: Brighter and longer battery life

Andreas Osthoff, 👁 Andreas Osthoff (translated by Stephanie Chamberlain), 09/13/2019

The better display for mobile use. After the ThinkPad X1 Carbon 2019 with the matte WQHD display, we now take a look at the matte low-power 1080p panel with an advertised brightness of 400 nits.

We already knew the matte WQHD panel of the ThinkPad X1 Carbon 2019 from the predecessor, but the cheaper entry-level panel with Full HD resolution and a brightness of 400 nits is likely to be the more exciting option for many users, even when it comes to battery life. Our review device is a Campus model called ThinkPad X1 Carbon 2019-20QES01L00 that costs 1,499 Euros (~$1,672). In this update we'll focus on the display and the battery life. For further information about the device, please refer to our reviews of the ThinkPad X1 Carbon from 2019 or 2018 and its different display versions:

Note: Actually, WWAN is not retrofittable with the ThinkPad X1 Carbon 2019. If you don't order it directly during the ordering process, the SIM slot on the back is missing and no antennas are laid. However, the Campus model is an exception, because WWAN is set up here. The SIM slot is available, and the antennas are also integrated. In theory, you could simply install an LTE module, but you can't buy a corresponding module yet. This mess is anything but customer-friendly, and in our opinion, all versions should be WWAN-ready.

The following photos of the case come from the X1 Carbon 2019 with the matte WQHD display.

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Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon 2019-20QES01L00 (ThinkPad X1 Carbon 2019 Series)
Graphics adapter
Memory
16384 MB 
, LPDDR3 2166, dual-channel, on board
Display
14 inch 16:9, 1920 x 1080 pixel 157 PPI, LP140WF9_SPF1, IPS, glossy: no
Mainboard
Intel Cannon Lake-U PCH-LP Premium
Storage
WDC PC SN720 SDAQNTW-512G, 512 GB 
, 447 GB free
Soundcard
Intel Cannon Lake-LP - cAVS
Connections
2 USB 3.0 / 3.1 Gen1, 2 USB 3.1 Gen2, 2 Thunderbolt, 1 HDMI, 2 DisplayPort, 1 Kensington Lock, 1 Docking Station Port, 1 Fingerprint Reader
Networking
Intel Ethernet Connection I219-V (10/100/1000/2500/5000MBit/s), Intel Wireless-AC 9560 (a/b/g/n = Wi-Fi 4/ac = Wi-Fi 5), Bluetooth 5.0
Size
height x width x depth (in mm): 14.9 x 323.5 x 217.1 ( = 0.59 x 12.74 x 8.55 in)
Battery
51 Wh, 3321 mAh Lithium-Ion
Operating System
Microsoft Windows 10 Pro 64 Bit
Camera
Webcam: 720p ThinkShutter
Additional features
Speakers: Dolby Atmos, 2x 2W, 2x 0.8W, Keyboard: chiclet, Keyboard Light: yes, 65-watt power adapter, ThinkPad Ethernet extension adapter Gen2, 36 Months Warranty
Weight
1.113 kg ( = 39.26 oz / 2.45 pounds), Power Supply: 366 g ( = 12.91 oz / 0.81 pounds)
Price
1499 Euro
Note: The manufacturer may use components from different suppliers including display panels, drives or memory sticks with similar specifications.

 

Display

Subpixel array
Subpixel array

The Full HD panel in our review device is the standard model for the ThinkPad X1 Carbon. As we've already discovered, Lenovo uses panels from a total of four different suppliers; in this case it comes from LG Philips. In terms of metrics, the LG Philips panel sits behind the Innolux, but it's ahead of the two other versions. Unfortunately, there's no way to know in advance which panel was used. A detailed overview with the measurements of all four options can be found in our special article.

With the exception of the resolution, the Full HD panel doesn't have any disadvantages compared to the WQHD display. Quite the contrary, it's even ahead in regard to the brightness and contrast ratio. The subjective impression is very good, and the 1080p resolution on the 14-inch panel is likely to be sufficient for many purposes too. There's only minimal screen bleeding in both top corners, but this is not bothersome in practice. PWM is not used.

384
cd/m²
376
cd/m²
388
cd/m²
372
cd/m²
381
cd/m²
379
cd/m²
368
cd/m²
363
cd/m²
363
cd/m²
Distribution of brightness
LP140WF9_SPF1
X-Rite i1Pro 2
Maximum: 388 cd/m² Average: 374.9 cd/m² Minimum: 3.3 cd/m²
Brightness Distribution: 94 %
Center on Battery: 380 cd/m²
Contrast: 1588:1 (Black: 0.24 cd/m²)
ΔE Color 4.6 | 0.6-29.43 Ø6, calibrated: 1.2
ΔE Greyscale 5.1 | 0.64-98 Ø6.2
95.7% sRGB (Argyll 3D) 60.7% AdobeRGB 1998 (Argyll 3D)
Gamma: 2.52
Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon 2019-20QES01L00
LP140WF9_SPF1, IPS, 1920x1080, 14
Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon 2019-20QE000VGE
LP140QH2-SPD1, IPS, 2560x1440, 14
Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon G6-20KG0025UK
Lenovo LEN40A9 / AUO B140HAK02.3, IPS, 1920x1080, 14
Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon 2018-20KGS03900
B140QAN02.0, IPS, 2560x1440, 14
Average of class Office
 
Screen
-18%
8%
24%
-98%
Brightness middle
381
338
-11%
298
-22%
578
52%
247 (107 - 1152, n=995)
-35%
Brightness
375
315
-16%
287
-23%
533
42%
Brightness Distribution
94
88
-6%
91
-3%
84
-11%
Black Level *
0.24
0.43
-79%
0.2
17%
0.38
-58%
0.935 (0.17 - 207, n=1029)
-290%
Contrast
1588
786
-51%
1490
-6%
1521
-4%
Colorchecker DeltaE2000 *
4.6
4
13%
2.19
52%
1.9
59%
7.94 (1 - 29.4, n=507)
-73%
Colorchecker DeltaE2000 max. *
8.5
7.9
7%
4.39
48%
3.8
55%
14.7 (3.55 - 76.6, n=306)
-73%
Colorchecker DeltaE2000 calibrated *
1.2
1.7
-42%
1.67
-39%
0.8
33%
3.63 (0.7 - 12.7, n=97)
-203%
Greyscale DeltaE2000 *
5.1
6.2
-22%
1.97
61%
3
41%
8.17 (0.8 - 16.8, n=514)
-60%
Gamma
2.52 87%
2.13 103%
2.43 91%
2.14 103%
2.37 93% (1.4 - 4.03, n=513)
CCT
7052 92%
6787 96%
6571 99%
6377 102%
10205 64% (5429 - 27039, n=507)
Color Space (Percent of AdobeRGB 1998)
60.7
68.1
12%
62
2%
88.8
46%
45 (33 - 88.8, n=472)
-26%
Color Space (Percent of sRGB)
95.7
97.8
2%
95
-1%
100
4%
70.3 (52 - 100, n=333)
-27%

* ... smaller is better

CalMAN grayscales
CalMAN grayscales
CalMAN saturation
CalMAN saturation
CalMAN ColorChecker
CalMAN ColorChecker
CalMAN grayscales calibrated
CalMAN grayscales calibrated
CalMAN saturation calibrated
CalMAN saturation calibrated
CalMAN ColorChecker calibrated
CalMAN ColorChecker calibrated

On factory settings, the average deviations in grayscales and colors compared to the sRGB reference color-space are still outside the target (smaller <3). In addition, the color temperature is slightly too cool. However, the values are still perfectly fine, especially for an office laptop. But if you want to tap the display's full potential, you can't avoid calibration. As always, our calibrated profile is available to download freely (link in the display box above). After the calibration, all values are within the target, together with an almost complete coverage of sRGB; image-editing is also possible.

vs. sRGB: 95.7%
vs. sRGB: 95.7%
vs. AdobeRGB: 60.7%
vs. AdobeRGB: 60.7%

Display Response Times

Display response times show how fast the screen is able to change from one color to the next. Slow response times can lead to afterimages and can cause moving objects to appear blurry (ghosting). Gamers of fast-paced 3D titles should pay special attention to fast response times.
       Response Time Black to White
27.6 ms ... rise ↗ and fall ↘ combined↗ 15.6 ms rise
↘ 12 ms fall
The screen shows relatively slow response rates in our tests and may be too slow for gamers.
In comparison, all tested devices range from 0.8 (minimum) to 240 (maximum) ms. » 58 % of all devices are better.
This means that the measured response time is worse than the average of all tested devices (24.9 ms).
       Response Time 50% Grey to 80% Grey
44.8 ms ... rise ↗ and fall ↘ combined↗ 21.2 ms rise
↘ 23.6 ms fall
The screen shows slow response rates in our tests and will be unsatisfactory for gamers.
In comparison, all tested devices range from 0.9 (minimum) to 636 (maximum) ms. » 69 % of all devices are better.
This means that the measured response time is worse than the average of all tested devices (39.7 ms).

Screen Flickering / PWM (Pulse-Width Modulation)

To dim the screen, some notebooks will simply cycle the backlight on and off in rapid succession - a method called Pulse Width Modulation (PWM) . This cycling frequency should ideally be undetectable to the human eye. If said frequency is too low, users with sensitive eyes may experience strain or headaches or even notice the flickering altogether.
Screen flickering / PWM not detected

In comparison: 51 % of all tested devices do not use PWM to dim the display. If PWM was detected, an average of 9365 (minimum: 43 - maximum: 142900) Hz was measured.

X1 Carbon WQHD (left) vs. FHD (right)
X1 Carbon WQHD (left) vs. FHD (right)

Battery life

In our Wi-Fi test, the ThinkPad X1 Carbon 2019 with the Full HD panel lasts around an hour longer than the WQHD model, and with video reproduction, even almost 90 minutes longer. This means that the 2019 X1 Carbon is also a little closer to its predecessor with the larger battery, which still has the edge in the Wi-Fi test.

Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon 2019-20QES01L00
8565U, 51 Wh, 1920x1080
Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon 2019-20QE000VGE
8665U, 51 Wh, 2560x1440
Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon 2018-20KGS03900
8550U, 57 Wh, 2560x1440
Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon G6-20KG0025UK
8350U, 57 Wh, 1920x1080
Battery Runtime
-14%
-13%
3%
H.264
688
586
-15%
566
-18%
657
-5%
WiFi v1.3
562
493
-12%
519
-8%
621
10%
Battery Runtime
NBC WiFi Websurfing Battery Test 1.3 (Edge 44)
9h 22min
Big Buck Bunny H.264 1080p
11h 28min
Load (maximum brightness)
1h 16min

Pros

+ extremely compact and light
+ good matte display with no PWM
+ good system performance
+ quiet fan
+ long battery life
+ very good speakers
+ WWAN-ready
+ extensive warranty
+ still a very good keyboard...

Cons

- ...but worse than with the predecessor
- smaller battery and omission of the microSD reader
- no Wi-Fi 6
- strongly restricted maintenance
- LAN only via (included) adapter

Verdict

In review: Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon 2019. Review device provided by
In review: Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon 2019. Review device provided by

As with some other current ThinkPads, this version of the low-power 1080p display is also able to convince. Although there's the risk of getting one of the two panels with lower response times, it's a big step forward in comparison to last year's standard display. For this reason, one should slightly question the right to exist for the matte WQHD panel. While it offers a somewhat higher resolution, it falls a bit behind in terms of contrast and brightness in return.

Otherwise, the pros and cons that we already described in our thorough review of the ThinkPad X1 Carbon 2019 WQHD naturally apply here too. The only difference is the WWAN module, which is theoretically retrofittable with the Campus model.

Brighter, better contrast ratio and lower energy consumption: The new standard 1080p display of the ThinkPad X1 Carbon is likely to be the best choice for most users. The price premium required for the matte WQHD panel is actually only worth it if you absolutely need the slightly higher resolution. However, this more expensive display doesn't offer any other advantages.

Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon 2019-20QES01L00 - 09/13/2019 v7
Andreas Osthoff

Chassis
90 / 98 → 92%
Keyboard
92%
Pointing Device
95%
Connectivity
72 / 80 → 90%
Weight
74 / 20-75 → 97%
Battery
88%
Display
87%
Games Performance
47 / 78 → 60%
Application Performance
89 / 95 → 93%
Temperature
90%
Noise
98%
Audio
74%
Camera
50 / 85 → 59%
Average
80%
91%
Office - Weighted Average

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> Notebook / Laptop Reviews and News > Reviews > Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon 2019 with Full HD laptop review: Brighter and longer battery life
Andreas Osthoff, 2019-09-13 (Update: 2019-09-15)