Notebookcheck

Lenovo ThinkPad X260 (Core i7, FHD) Subnotebook Review

Sascha Mölck, Stefanie Voigt (translated by Bernie Pechlaner), 06/10/2016

Mobile Office. Lenovo's small subnotebook is noteworthy for its very decent keyboard and long battery life. An LTE modem allows access to the Internet while on-the-go. All things considered, the ThinkPad X260 is a solid offering.

Working For Notebookcheck

Are you a techie who knows how to write? Then join our Team!

Currently wanted: 
News Editor - Details here

For the original German review, see here.

A few weeks ago we reviewed the entry-level version of the Thinkpad X260. This time around, we are taking a look at the top model in the series. The subnotebook comes equipped with a Core i7 processor, 512 GB SSD, LTE modem, and IPS Full-HD display. Competitors are the HP Elitebook 820 G3 and the Dell Latitude 12 E7250.  

Since we've reviewed the series before, we won't revisit the sections on the chassis, connectivity, the input devices, and the speakers. For details and more information, please check our review of the X260 with Core i5.

Please note: the pictures below were taken from the review of the i5-version of the notebook.

Lenovo ThinkPad X260-20F6007RGE (ThinkPad X260 Series)
Graphics adapter
Intel HD Graphics 520, Core: 300-1000 MHz, Single-Channel, 20.19.15.4331
Memory
8192 MB 
, DDR4-2132, Single-Channel, one slot (in use)
Display
12.5 inch 16:9, 1920 x 1080 pixel 176 PPI, Lenovo N125HCE-GN1, IPS, glossy: no
Mainboard
Intel Skylake-U Premium PCH
Storage
Liteonit LCH-512V2S, 512 GB 
, 430 GB free
Soundcard
Realtek ALC293 @ Intel Skylake High Definition Audio Controller
Connections
3 USB 3.0 / 3.1 Gen1, 1 HDMI, 1 DisplayPort, 1 Kensington Lock, 1 Docking Station Port, Audio Connections: 3.5 mm audio combo-jack, Card Reader: SD, 1 SmartCard, 1 Fingerprint Reader, Brightness Sensor, TPM 1.2
Networking
Intel Ethernet Connection I219-V (10/100/1000MBit), Intel Dual Band Wireless-AC 8260 (a/b/g/n/ac), Bluetooth 4.2, Huawei ME906s LTE, LTE, GPS
Size
height x width x depth (in mm): 20.3 x 305.5 x 208.5 ( = 0.8 x 12.03 x 8.21 in)
Battery
46 Wh Lithium-Ion
Operating System
Microsoft Windows 7 Professional (64 Bit) + Windows 10 Pro (64 Bit)
Camera
Webcam: HD webcam
Additional features
Speakers: Stereo, Keyboard: Chiclet, Keyboard Light: no, MS Office 365, 36 Months Warranty
Weight
1.44 kg ( = 50.79 oz / 3.17 pounds), Power Supply: 290 g ( = 10.23 oz / 0.64 pounds)
Price
1999 Euro
Note: The manufacturer may use components from different suppliers including display panels, drives or memory sticks with similar specifications.

 

The ThinkPad X260 - a classic Lenovo design
The ThinkPad X260 - a classic Lenovo design
The docking port on the bottom
Ageless chassis design
As usual: two sets of mouse controls
The small 12.5-inch notebook is supposed to be ...
... the perfect mobile companion.
The touchpad could use another revision.
The thin hinges open very wide.
With careful attention ...
... the chassis can be opened up.
The internal battery ...
... as well as the WLAN module and the RAM are replacable.
The fan is also accessible for cleanings.

Connectivity

WLAN Speed

The Thinkpad is equipped with a WLAN module from Intel that is based on the 8260 chip. The module supports the faster 802.11 ac standard and can - according to Intel - transfer data at a maximum rate of 867 Mbit/s. Even under ideal circumstances, our measurements fell short of the advertised rate: we measured 620 Mbit/s for reads and 488 Mbit/s for writes, respectively. For this module, these rates are about average. For our test, we placed the Thinkpad one meter (about 3.3 feet) away from the router (Linksys EA8500). The server is a PC equipped with Gigabit LAN. All other WLAN devices in the vicinity were turned off during the test if at all possible. 

Card Reader

The card reader is capable of fairly high transfer rates - we measured 83.5 MB/s when transferring larger data blocks. 250 jpg files (5 MB each) copied at a speed of 63.2 MB/s. For this test, we use a reference SD card from Toshiba (Exceria Pro SDXC 64 GB UHS-II). 

Display

Subpixel array
Subpixel array

While the X260 we reviewed  a while ago was equipped with an HD display with a resolution of 1366 x 768 pixels, our review notebook shipped with a Full-HD panel. Both the brightness (322.2 cd/m²) and the contrast (1053:1) are quite decent. Positive: at no time did we observe PWM flickering. Because of the higher brightness and the lack of flickering, we much prefer the Full-HD display over the HD version.

316
cd/m²
315
cd/m²
306
cd/m²
328
cd/m²
337
cd/m²
317
cd/m²
333
cd/m²
331
cd/m²
317
cd/m²
Distribution of brightness
X-Rite i1Pro 2
Maximum: 337 cd/m² Average: 322.2 cd/m² Minimum: 3 cd/m²
Brightness Distribution: 91 %
Center on Battery: 333 cd/m²
Contrast: 1053:1 (Black: 0.32 cd/m²)
ΔE Color 5.71 | 0.4-29.43 Ø6.3
ΔE Greyscale 5.15 | 0.64-98 Ø6.5
65.62% sRGB (Argyll 3D) 42.38% AdobeRGB 1998 (Argyll 3D)
Gamma: 2.38

Independent journalism is made possible by advertising. We show the least amount of ads whenever possible but we intentionally show more ads when an adblocker is used. Please, switch off ad blockers and support us!

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: 52 % of all tested devices do not use PWM to dim the display. If PWM was detected, an average of 8773 (minimum: 43 - maximum: 142900) Hz was measured.

As shipped, the DeltaE deviation for colors is 5.71, which means that the panel misses the target value (DeltaE < 3). A calibration didn't change the result much with the deviation only decreasing to 4.33. The graylevels were much improved though with better balance and lower deviation from the ideal values. The display has no bluish tint. The display can't adequately cover the professional color spaces AdobeRGB at 42.4 % and sRGB at 65.2 %.

Thinkpad vs. sRGB
Thinkpad vs. sRGB
Thinkpad vs. AdobeRGB
Thinkpad vs. AdobeRGB
CalMAN - Color Checker
CalMAN - Color Checker
CalMAN - Graylevels
CalMAN - Graylevels
CalMAN - Saturation
CalMAN - Saturation
CalMAN - Color Checker (calibrated)
CalMAN - Color Checker (calibrated)
CalMAN - Graylevels (calibrated)
CalMAN - Graylevels (calibrated)
CalMAN - Saturation (calibrated)
CalMAN - Saturation (calibrated)

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
27.2 ms ... rise ↗ and fall ↘ combined↗ 12.4 ms rise
↘ 14.8 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. » 57 % of all devices are better.
This means that the measured response time is similar to the average of all tested devices (25.6 ms).
       Response Time 50% Grey to 80% Grey
32.8 ms ... rise ↗ and fall ↘ combined↗ 15.6 ms rise
↘ 17.2 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. » 20 % of all devices are better.
This means that the measured response time is better than the average of all tested devices (41 ms).

The Full-HD display is based on IPS technology and therefore features high viewing angle stability - which is also true for the HD display. Both panels remain readable from nearly all positions. Our X260 is perfectly suited for outdoor use, although bright sunlight is best avoided.

Outdoor use
Outdoor use
Viewing angles
Viewing angles
Lenovo ThinkPad X260-20F6007RGE
IPS, 1920x1080
Lenovo ThinkPad X260-20F60041GE
IPS, 1366x768
HP EliteBook 820 G3
TN LED, 1366x768
Dell Latitude 12 E7250
TN-LED, 1920x1080
Microsoft Surface Pro 4, Core i5, 128GB
IPS, 2736x1824
Response Times
-15%
-42%
-28%
Response Time Grey 50% / Grey 80% *
32.8 (15.6, 17.2)
42.8 (18.8, 24)
-30%
58 (24.8, 33.2)
-77%
46 (17.2, 28.8, plateau, spikes in between)
-40%
Response Time Black / White *
27.2 (12.4, 14.8)
27.2 (12.4, 14.8)
-0%
29.2 (12, 17.2)
-7%
31.2 (6, 25.2, Spikes in between)
-15%
PWM Frequency
220 (90)
50 (50)
Screen
12%
-38%
-10%
22%
Brightness middle
337
262
-22%
244
-28%
360
7%
413
23%
Brightness
322
251
-22%
240
-25%
330
2%
396
23%
Brightness Distribution
91
88
-3%
84
-8%
81
-11%
87
-4%
Black Level *
0.32
0.26
19%
0.6
-88%
0.53
-66%
0.36
-13%
Contrast
1053
1008
-4%
407
-61%
679
-36%
1147
9%
Colorchecker DeltaE2000 *
5.71
3.55
38%
9
-58%
5.58
2%
3.09
46%
Colorchecker DeltaE2000 max. *
15.39
5.85
62%
15.73
-2%
Greyscale DeltaE2000 *
5.15
3.36
35%
9.48
-84%
3.98
23%
3.92
24%
Gamma
2.38 92%
2.39 92%
2.44 90%
2.21 100%
2.3 96%
CCT
6881 94%
5985 109%
11116 58%
6192 105%
7333 89%
Color Space (Percent of AdobeRGB 1998)
42.38
45.9
8%
37.18
-12%
42.2
0%
61
44%
Color Space (Percent of sRGB)
65.62
58.63
-11%
97
48%
Total Average (Program / Settings)
-2% / 7%
-40% / -38%
-10% / -10%
-3% / 13%

* ... smaller is better

Performance

Lenovo's Thinkpad X260 is a 12.5-inch notebook designed for business use. As such, it features a docking port, TPM 1.2, and a fingerprint reader. An LTE modem is optional. Our configuration is the top model and retails for about 2000 Euro (~$2240). Other versions start at roughly 1300 Euro (~$1450).

CPU-Z
CPU-Z
CPU-Z
CPU-Z
CPU-Z
GPU-Z
HWInfo
LatencyMon

Processor

Our review notebook is the current top-of-the line version in the series and comes with one of the most powerful ULV processors available from Intel at the time of writing. The dual-core Core i7-6500U (Skylake) CPU operates at a base speed of 2.5 GHz, although the Turbo can overclock two cores to 3 GHz and a single core to 3.1 GHz. The most important difference between the i7 and the Core i5-6200U CPU - which powered the previously-tested X260 - is the slightly higher base clock speed and the higher Turbo rates the former CPU is capable of. The result: the Core i7 offers about 10 - 15 % more performance. This advantage  is only really noticeable when CPU-intensive applications are running; during normal operations, the difference is negligible. The CPU maintains its maximum performance no matter if the notebook is plugged in or running on battery.

Cinebench R10 Shading 32Bit
8094
Cinebench R10 Rendering Multiple CPUs 32Bit
11019
Cinebench R10 Rendering Single 32Bit
4859
Cinebench R11.5 OpenGL 64Bit
35.51 fps
Cinebench R11.5 CPU Multi 64Bit
3.57 Points
Cinebench R11.5 CPU Single 64Bit
1.47 Points
Cinebench R15 Ref. Match 64Bit
97.8 %
Cinebench R15 OpenGL 64Bit
38.53 fps
Cinebench R15 CPU Multi 64Bit
324 Points
Cinebench R15 CPU Single 64Bit
128 Points
Help
Cinebench R15
CPU Single 64Bit
Lenovo ThinkPad X260-20F6007RGE
HD Graphics 520, 6500U, Liteonit LCH-512V2S
128 Points ∼100%
HP EliteBook 820 G3
HD Graphics 520, 6300U, Samsung SM951 MZVPV256HDGL m.2 PCI-e
123 Points ∼96% -4%
Microsoft Surface Pro 4, Core i5, 128GB
HD Graphics 520, 6300U, Samsung MZFLV128 NVMe
122 Points ∼95% -5%
Dell Latitude 12 E7250
HD Graphics 5500, 5300U, Samsung PM851 Series MZMTE256HMHP
114 Points ∼89% -11%
Lenovo ThinkPad X260-20F60041GE
HD Graphics 520, 6200U, Seagate ST500LM000 Solid State Hybrid Drive
112 Points ∼88% -12%
Dell Latitude 12 E7275
HD Graphics 515, 6Y75, Samsung SSD PM871 MZNLN256HCHP
96 Points ∼75% -25%
CPU Multi 64Bit
Lenovo ThinkPad X260-20F6007RGE
HD Graphics 520, 6500U, Liteonit LCH-512V2S
324 Points ∼100%
HP EliteBook 820 G3
HD Graphics 520, 6300U, Samsung SM951 MZVPV256HDGL m.2 PCI-e
311 Points ∼96% -4%
Microsoft Surface Pro 4, Core i5, 128GB
HD Graphics 520, 6300U, Samsung MZFLV128 NVMe
306 Points ∼94% -6%
Lenovo ThinkPad X260-20F60041GE
HD Graphics 520, 6200U, Seagate ST500LM000 Solid State Hybrid Drive
289 Points ∼89% -11%
Dell Latitude 12 E7250
HD Graphics 5500, 5300U, Samsung PM851 Series MZMTE256HMHP
264 Points ∼81% -19%
Dell Latitude 12 E7275
HD Graphics 515, 6Y75, Samsung SSD PM871 MZNLN256HCHP
172 Points ∼53% -47%
Cinebench R11.5
CPU Single 64Bit
Lenovo ThinkPad X260-20F6007RGE
HD Graphics 520, 6500U, Liteonit LCH-512V2S
1.47 Points ∼100%
Microsoft Surface Pro 4, Core i5, 128GB
HD Graphics 520, 6300U, Samsung MZFLV128 NVMe
1.4 Points ∼95% -5%
Dell Latitude 12 E7250
HD Graphics 5500, 5300U, Samsung PM851 Series MZMTE256HMHP
1.33 Points ∼90% -10%
Lenovo ThinkPad X260-20F60041GE
HD Graphics 520, 6200U, Seagate ST500LM000 Solid State Hybrid Drive
1.32 Points ∼90% -10%
Dell Latitude 12 E7275
HD Graphics 515, 6Y75, Samsung SSD PM871 MZNLN256HCHP
1 Points ∼68% -32%
CPU Multi 64Bit
Lenovo ThinkPad X260-20F6007RGE
HD Graphics 520, 6500U, Liteonit LCH-512V2S
3.57 Points ∼100%
Microsoft Surface Pro 4, Core i5, 128GB
HD Graphics 520, 6300U, Samsung MZFLV128 NVMe
3.4 Points ∼95% -5%
Lenovo ThinkPad X260-20F60041GE
HD Graphics 520, 6200U, Seagate ST500LM000 Solid State Hybrid Drive
3.19 Points ∼89% -11%
Dell Latitude 12 E7250
HD Graphics 5500, 5300U, Samsung PM851 Series MZMTE256HMHP
2.94 Points ∼82% -18%
Dell Latitude 12 E7275
HD Graphics 515, 6Y75, Samsung SSD PM871 MZNLN256HCHP
1.94 Points ∼54% -46%
Cinebench R10
Rendering Single 32Bit
Lenovo ThinkPad X260-20F6007RGE
HD Graphics 520, 6500U, Liteonit LCH-512V2S
4859 Points ∼100%
Microsoft Surface Pro 4, Core i5, 128GB
HD Graphics 520, 6300U, Samsung MZFLV128 NVMe
4656 Points ∼96% -4%
Lenovo ThinkPad X260-20F60041GE
HD Graphics 520, 6200U, Seagate ST500LM000 Solid State Hybrid Drive
4408 Points ∼91% -9%
Dell Latitude 12 E7250
HD Graphics 5500, 5300U, Samsung PM851 Series MZMTE256HMHP
4341 Points ∼89% -11%
Dell Latitude 12 E7275
HD Graphics 515, 6Y75, Samsung SSD PM871 MZNLN256HCHP
3817 Points ∼79% -21%
Rendering Multiple CPUs 32Bit
Lenovo ThinkPad X260-20F6007RGE
HD Graphics 520, 6500U, Liteonit LCH-512V2S
11019 Points ∼100%
Microsoft Surface Pro 4, Core i5, 128GB
HD Graphics 520, 6300U, Samsung MZFLV128 NVMe
10558 Points ∼96% -4%
Lenovo ThinkPad X260-20F60041GE
HD Graphics 520, 6200U, Seagate ST500LM000 Solid State Hybrid Drive
9728 Points ∼88% -12%
Dell Latitude 12 E7250
HD Graphics 5500, 5300U, Samsung PM851 Series MZMTE256HMHP
9103 Points ∼83% -17%
Dell Latitude 12 E7275
HD Graphics 515, 6Y75, Samsung SSD PM871 MZNLN256HCHP
6136 Points ∼56% -44%
Geekbench 3
32 Bit Multi-Core Score
Microsoft Surface Pro 4, Core i5, 128GB
HD Graphics 520, 6300U, Samsung MZFLV128 NVMe
6419 Points ∼100% 0%
Lenovo ThinkPad X260-20F6007RGE
HD Graphics 520, 6500U, Liteonit LCH-512V2S
6395 Points ∼100%
Dell Latitude 12 E7275
HD Graphics 515, 6Y75, Samsung SSD PM871 MZNLN256HCHP
4078 Points ∼64% -36%
32 Bit Single-Core Score
Microsoft Surface Pro 4, Core i5, 128GB
HD Graphics 520, 6300U, Samsung MZFLV128 NVMe
3085 Points ∼100% +4%
Lenovo ThinkPad X260-20F6007RGE
HD Graphics 520, 6500U, Liteonit LCH-512V2S
2956 Points ∼96%
Dell Latitude 12 E7275
HD Graphics 515, 6Y75, Samsung SSD PM871 MZNLN256HCHP
2492 Points ∼81% -16%
Sunspider - 1.0 Total Score
Dell Latitude 12 E7275
HD Graphics 515, 6Y75, Samsung SSD PM871 MZNLN256HCHP
138.7 ms * ∼100% -57%
Dell Latitude 12 E7250
HD Graphics 5500, 5300U, Samsung PM851 Series MZMTE256HMHP
109.1 ms * ∼79% -24%
Microsoft Surface Pro 4, Core i5, 128GB
HD Graphics 520, 6300U, Samsung MZFLV128 NVMe
104.5 ms * ∼75% -18%
Lenovo ThinkPad X260-20F60041GE
HD Graphics 520, 6200U, Seagate ST500LM000 Solid State Hybrid Drive
91.8 ms * ∼66% -4%
Lenovo ThinkPad X260-20F6007RGE
HD Graphics 520, 6500U, Liteonit LCH-512V2S
88.3 ms * ∼64%
JetStream 1.1 - 1.1 Total Score
Lenovo ThinkPad X260-20F6007RGE
HD Graphics 520, 6500U, Liteonit LCH-512V2S
217.28 Points ∼100%
HP EliteBook 820 G3
HD Graphics 520, 6300U, Samsung SM951 MZVPV256HDGL m.2 PCI-e
188 Points ∼87% -13%
Dell Latitude 12 E7275
HD Graphics 515, 6Y75, Samsung SSD PM871 MZNLN256HCHP
127.93 Points ∼59% -41%
Mozilla Kraken 1.1 - Total Score
Dell Latitude 12 E7250
HD Graphics 5500, 5300U, Samsung PM851 Series MZMTE256HMHP
2585 ms * ∼100% -134%
Dell Latitude 12 E7275
HD Graphics 515, 6Y75, Samsung SSD PM871 MZNLN256HCHP
1684.9 ms * ∼65% -52%
Lenovo ThinkPad X260-20F60041GE
HD Graphics 520, 6200U, Seagate ST500LM000 Solid State Hybrid Drive
1282.7 ms * ∼50% -16%
HP EliteBook 820 G3
HD Graphics 520, 6300U, Samsung SM951 MZVPV256HDGL m.2 PCI-e
1202.6 ms * ∼47% -9%
Microsoft Surface Pro 4, Core i5, 128GB
HD Graphics 520, 6300U, Samsung MZFLV128 NVMe
1178 ms * ∼46% -6%
Lenovo ThinkPad X260-20F6007RGE
HD Graphics 520, 6500U, Liteonit LCH-512V2S
1106.7 ms * ∼43%
Octane V2 - Total Score
Lenovo ThinkPad X260-20F6007RGE
HD Graphics 520, 6500U, Liteonit LCH-512V2S
32256 Points ∼100%
Microsoft Surface Pro 4, Core i5, 128GB
HD Graphics 520, 6300U, Samsung MZFLV128 NVMe
29991 Points ∼93% -7%
HP EliteBook 820 G3
HD Graphics 520, 6300U, Samsung SM951 MZVPV256HDGL m.2 PCI-e
29020 Points ∼90% -10%
Lenovo ThinkPad X260-20F60041GE
HD Graphics 520, 6200U, Seagate ST500LM000 Solid State Hybrid Drive
26857 Points ∼83% -17%
Dell Latitude 12 E7275
HD Graphics 515, 6Y75, Samsung SSD PM871 MZNLN256HCHP
19923 Points ∼62% -38%
Dell Latitude 12 E7250
HD Graphics 5500, 5300U, Samsung PM851 Series MZMTE256HMHP
12123 Points ∼38% -62%
Peacekeeper - ---
Lenovo ThinkPad X260-20F6007RGE
HD Graphics 520, 6500U, Liteonit LCH-512V2S
3001 Points ∼100%
Microsoft Surface Pro 4, Core i5, 128GB
HD Graphics 520, 6300U, Samsung MZFLV128 NVMe
2998 Points ∼100% 0%
Dell Latitude 12 E7275
HD Graphics 515, 6Y75, Samsung SSD PM871 MZNLN256HCHP
1974 Points ∼66% -34%

* ... smaller is better

System Performance

The system runs smoothly and without any lag. Windows boots quickly thanks to the combination of powerful CPU and fast SSD. This combination is also responsible for the very decent PC Mark benchmark results. The comparison table below reveals that the Core i5 version scores very similar to the i7 model in the PC Mark 8 benchmark test. The reason for the near-identical performance has to do with the SSD cache of the hybrid hard drive, which improves the results in this particular synthetic benchmark. The type of storage comes much more into play when running the PC Mark 7 benchmark. Here, the review notebook scored significantly better. The overall performance of the Thinkpad can't be improved any further -  all tunings options have been exhausted already.

PCMark 7 Score
5194 points
PCMark 8 Home Score Accelerated v2
3284 points
PCMark 8 Creative Score Accelerated v2
3945 points
PCMark 8 Work Score Accelerated v2
4341 points
Help
PCMark 8 - Work Score Accelerated v2
HP EliteBook 820 G3
HD Graphics 520, 6300U, Samsung SM951 MZVPV256HDGL m.2 PCI-e
4581 Points ∼100% +6%
Lenovo ThinkPad X260-20F6007RGE
HD Graphics 520, 6500U, Liteonit LCH-512V2S
4341 Points ∼95%
Lenovo ThinkPad X260-20F60041GE
HD Graphics 520, 6200U, Seagate ST500LM000 Solid State Hybrid Drive
4335 Points ∼95% 0%
Microsoft Surface Pro 4, Core i5, 128GB
HD Graphics 520, 6300U, Samsung MZFLV128 NVMe
3697 Points ∼81% -15%
Dell Latitude 12 E7275
HD Graphics 515, 6Y75, Samsung SSD PM871 MZNLN256HCHP
3235 Points ∼71% -25%
PCMark 7 - Score
Microsoft Surface Pro 4, Core i5, 128GB
HD Graphics 520, 6300U, Samsung MZFLV128 NVMe
5229 Points ∼100% +1%
Lenovo ThinkPad X260-20F6007RGE
HD Graphics 520, 6500U, Liteonit LCH-512V2S
5194 Points ∼99%
Dell Latitude 12 E7250
HD Graphics 5500, 5300U, Samsung PM851 Series MZMTE256HMHP
4662 Points ∼89% -10%
Dell Latitude 12 E7275
HD Graphics 515, 6Y75, Samsung SSD PM871 MZNLN256HCHP
4379 Points ∼84% -16%
Lenovo ThinkPad X260-20F60041GE
HD Graphics 520, 6200U, Seagate ST500LM000 Solid State Hybrid Drive
3777 Points ∼72% -27%

Storage Devices

The Thinkpad is equipped with a 2.5-inch SSD with a capacity of 512 GB, of which 430 GB are available to the user. The rest of the space is occupied by the recovery partition and the Windows OS. We can't find a fault with the performance - the transfer rates are very good.

Liteonit LCH-512V2S
Sequential Read: 499.6 MB/s
Sequential Write: 403 MB/s
512K Read: 322.9 MB/s
512K Write: 372.4 MB/s
4K Read: 27.22 MB/s
4K Write: 83.55 MB/s
4K QD32 Read: 316.5 MB/s
4K QD32 Write: 273.1 MB/s

GPU Performance

Lenovo doesn't offer models with a dedicated GPU. All X260s make use of Intel's HD Graphics 520 graphics cards. The GPU supports DirectX 12 and operates at 1000 MHz. The results of the 3D Mark Benchmark test are at the expected level for this type of GPU. It's not possible to increase the performance with a second RAM module (= dual-channel mode), since the Thinkpad only has one slot.

3DMark 06 Standard
8553 points
3DMark 11 Performance
1406 points
3DMark Ice Storm Standard Score
47266 points
3DMark Cloud Gate Standard Score
5321 points
3DMark Fire Strike Score
747 points
Help
3DMark 11 - 1280x720 Performance
Microsoft Surface Pro 4, Core i5, 128GB
HD Graphics 520, 6300U, Samsung MZFLV128 NVMe
1565 Points ∼100% +11%
HP EliteBook 820 G3
HD Graphics 520, 6300U, Samsung SM951 MZVPV256HDGL m.2 PCI-e
1408 Points ∼90% 0%
Lenovo ThinkPad X260-20F6007RGE
HD Graphics 520, 6500U, Liteonit LCH-512V2S
1406 Points ∼90%
Lenovo ThinkPad X260-20F60041GE
HD Graphics 520, 6200U, Seagate ST500LM000 Solid State Hybrid Drive
1332 Points ∼85% -5%
Dell Latitude 12 E7275
HD Graphics 515, 6Y75, Samsung SSD PM871 MZNLN256HCHP
959 Points ∼61% -32%
Dell Latitude 12 E7250
HD Graphics 5500, 5300U, Samsung PM851 Series MZMTE256HMHP
927 Points ∼59% -34%
3DMark
1920x1080 Fire Strike Score
Microsoft Surface Pro 4, Core i5, 128GB
HD Graphics 520, 6300U, Samsung MZFLV128 NVMe
844 Points ∼100% +13%
Lenovo ThinkPad X260-20F6007RGE
HD Graphics 520, 6500U, Liteonit LCH-512V2S
747 Points ∼89%
HP EliteBook 820 G3
HD Graphics 520, 6300U, Samsung SM951 MZVPV256HDGL m.2 PCI-e
711 Points ∼84% -5%
Lenovo ThinkPad X260-20F60041GE
HD Graphics 520, 6200U, Seagate ST500LM000 Solid State Hybrid Drive
688 Points ∼82% -8%
Dell Latitude 12 E7250
HD Graphics 5500, 5300U, Samsung PM851 Series MZMTE256HMHP
599 Points ∼71% -20%
Dell Latitude 12 E7275
HD Graphics 515, 6Y75, Samsung SSD PM871 MZNLN256HCHP
569 Points ∼67% -24%
1280x720 Sky Diver Score
Lenovo ThinkPad X260-20F6007RGE
HD Graphics 520, 6500U, Liteonit LCH-512V2S
3293 Points ∼100%
1280x720 Cloud Gate Standard Score
Microsoft Surface Pro 4, Core i5, 128GB
HD Graphics 520, 6300U, Samsung MZFLV128 NVMe
5853 Points ∼100% +10%
Lenovo ThinkPad X260-20F6007RGE
HD Graphics 520, 6500U, Liteonit LCH-512V2S
5321 Points ∼91%
HP EliteBook 820 G3
HD Graphics 520, 6300U, Samsung SM951 MZVPV256HDGL m.2 PCI-e
5164 Points ∼88% -3%
Lenovo ThinkPad X260-20F60041GE
HD Graphics 520, 6200U, Seagate ST500LM000 Solid State Hybrid Drive
4938 Points ∼84% -7%
Dell Latitude 12 E7250
HD Graphics 5500, 5300U, Samsung PM851 Series MZMTE256HMHP
4633 Points ∼79% -13%
Dell Latitude 12 E7275
HD Graphics 515, 6Y75, Samsung SSD PM871 MZNLN256HCHP
3608 Points ∼62% -32%
1280x720 Ice Storm Standard Score
Microsoft Surface Pro 4, Core i5, 128GB
HD Graphics 520, 6300U, Samsung MZFLV128 NVMe
51010 Points ∼100% +8%
Lenovo ThinkPad X260-20F6007RGE
HD Graphics 520, 6500U, Liteonit LCH-512V2S
47266 Points ∼93%
Lenovo ThinkPad X260-20F60041GE
HD Graphics 520, 6200U, Seagate ST500LM000 Solid State Hybrid Drive
45479 Points ∼89% -4%
Dell Latitude 12 E7250
HD Graphics 5500, 5300U, Samsung PM851 Series MZMTE256HMHP
42996 Points ∼84% -9%
Dell Latitude 12 E7275
HD Graphics 515, 6Y75, Samsung SSD PM871 MZNLN256HCHP
28957 Points ∼57% -39%
3DMark 06 - 1280x1024 Standard AA:0x AF:0x
Lenovo ThinkPad X260-20F6007RGE
HD Graphics 520, 6500U, Liteonit LCH-512V2S
8553 Points ∼100%
Dell Latitude 12 E7275
HD Graphics 515, 6Y75, Samsung SSD PM871 MZNLN256HCHP
6160 Points ∼72% -28%

Gaming Performance

The hardware configuration allows gaming to a certain extent - at least as long as the titles in question aren't too hardware intensive. Examples are Fifa 16, Counter-Strike: GO, and Sims 4. Games like Hitman are out of the question. Even so, the titles still require concessions as far as the resolution and the quality are concerned. The frame rates are only at playable levels if the resolution is set to low and the quality is either low or medium. The maximum Full-HD resolution is not usable for gaming.

low med. high ultra
Tomb Raider (2013) 56.828.118.68.9fps
BioShock Infinite (2013) 37.72218.35.4fps
Battlefield 4 (2013) 36.726.415.84.4fps

Emissions

System Noise

Noise level fan system
Noise level fan system

At idle, the fan of the Thinkpad is frequently not running at all, so the notebook remains completely silent. Under load, the noise level stays within reasonable limits. During our stress test, we measured a maximum of 37.8 dB. Our review system produces slightly more noise under load than the model with core i5.

Noise Level

Idle
29 / 29 / 29 dB(A)
Load
35.1 / 37.8 dB(A)
  red to green bar
 
 
30 dB
silent
40 dB(A)
audible
50 dB(A)
loud
 
min: dark, med: mid, max: light   ECM8000 + Voltcraft SL-451 (15 cm distance)   environment noise: 29 dB(A)
Lenovo ThinkPad X260-20F6007RGE
6500U, HD Graphics 520
Lenovo ThinkPad X260-20F60041GE
6200U, HD Graphics 520
HP EliteBook 820 G3
6300U, HD Graphics 520
Dell Latitude 12 E7250
5300U, HD Graphics 5500
Microsoft Surface Pro 4, Core i5, 128GB
6300U, HD Graphics 520
Noise
2%
-1%
-5%
-10%
off / environment *
29
29
-0%
29.2
-1%
Idle Minimum *
29
29.4
-1%
29.2
-1%
29.3
-1%
31.5
-9%
Idle Average *
29
29.4
-1%
29.2
-1%
29.3
-1%
31.5
-9%
Idle Maximum *
29
29.4
-1%
29.2
-1%
29.3
-1%
31.5
-9%
Load Average *
35.1
33.2
5%
35.6
-1%
37.9
-8%
40.5
-15%
Load Maximum *
37.8
33.2
12%
37
2%
42.8
-13%
40.7
-8%

* ... smaller is better

Temperature

The Thinkpad during the stress test.
The Thinkpad during the stress test.

The Thinkpad handles the stress test (Prime95 and Furmark running in parallel for at least one hour) in the same manner no matter if it is plugged in or running on battery power. Both the CPU and the GPU only operate at high clock speeds during the first few minutes before throttling occurs. At that point, the processor runs at 1.5 GHz and the GPU at 950 MHz. The chassis only gets moderately warm and exceeds 40 degrees Celsius only in a few spots.

Max. Load
 47.5 °C
118 F
32 °C
90 F
28.8 °C
84 F
 
 41.1 °C
106 F
39.5 °C
103 F
29.3 °C
85 F
 
 32.3 °C
90 F
30.6 °C
87 F
29.4 °C
85 F
 
Maximum: 47.5 °C = 118 F
Average: 34.5 °C = 94 F
30.6 °C
87 F
32.1 °C
90 F
33 °C
91 F
32 °C
90 F
43.6 °C
110 F
42 °C
108 F
30.8 °C
87 F
32.6 °C
91 F
37 °C
99 F
Maximum: 43.6 °C = 110 F
Average: 34.9 °C = 95 F
Power Supply (max.)  41.8 °C = 107 F | Room Temperature 22.6 °C = 73 F | Fluke 62 Max
(±) The average temperature for the upper side under maximal load is 34.5 °C / 94 F, compared to the average of 30.8 °C / 87 F for the devices in the class Subnotebook.
(-) The maximum temperature on the upper side is 47.5 °C / 118 F, compared to the average of 35.9 °C / 97 F, ranging from 22 to 57 °C for the class Subnotebook.
(±) The bottom heats up to a maximum of 43.6 °C / 110 F, compared to the average of 40.3 °C / 105 F
(+) In idle usage, the average temperature for the upper side is 30.9 °C / 88 F, compared to the device average of 30.8 °C / 87 F.
(+) The palmrests and touchpad are reaching skin temperature as a maximum (32.3 °C / 90.1 F) and are therefore not hot.
(-) The average temperature of the palmrest area of similar devices was 28.7 °C / 83.7 F (-3.6 °C / -6.4 F).
Lenovo ThinkPad X260-20F6007RGE
6500U, HD Graphics 520
Lenovo ThinkPad X260-20F60041GE
6200U, HD Graphics 520
HP EliteBook 820 G3
6300U, HD Graphics 520
Dell Latitude 12 E7250
5300U, HD Graphics 5500
Microsoft Surface Pro 4, Core i5, 128GB
6300U, HD Graphics 520
Heat
5%
14%
-1%
-13%
Maximum Upper Side *
47.5
45.3
5%
39.6
17%
46.7
2%
52.3
-10%
Maximum Bottom *
43.6
48.8
-12%
40.1
8%
56
-28%
51.4
-18%
Idle Upper Side *
34.9
29.3
16%
29.4
16%
30.1
14%
43.2
-24%
Idle Bottom *
35.9
32.4
10%
30.6
15%
33.2
8%
36
-0%

* ... smaller is better

Energy Management

Power Consumption

As far as the power consumption is concerned, the Thinkpad is well behaved. The maximum power consumption at idle is 6.7 watts - a good value. In the first few minutes of the stress test, the X260 consumes a maximum of 42.1 watts before throttling subsequently reduces the power draw to 30.5 watts. The power adapter is rated for 45 watts.

Power Consumption
Off / Standbydarklight 0.2 / 0.55 Watt
Idledarkmidlight 3.5 / 5.5 / 6.7 Watt
Load midlight 28.9 / 42.1 Watt
 color bar
Key: min: dark, med: mid, max: light        Metrahit Energy
Lenovo ThinkPad X260-20F6007RGE
6500U, HD Graphics 520
Lenovo ThinkPad X260-20F60041GE
6200U, HD Graphics 520
HP EliteBook 820 G3
6300U, HD Graphics 520
Dell Latitude 12 E7250
5300U, HD Graphics 5500
Microsoft Surface Pro 4, Core i5, 128GB
6300U, HD Graphics 520
Power Consumption
1%
4%
-23%
-13%
Idle Minimum *
3.5
3.6
-3%
3.5
-0%
4.1
-17%
4.4
-26%
Idle Average *
5.5
5.9
-7%
5.4
2%
8.3
-51%
9
-64%
Idle Maximum *
6.7
6.6
1%
6.2
7%
9.4
-40%
10.7
-60%
Load Average *
28.9
28.5
1%
27.3
6%
31.6
-9%
19.6
32%
Load Maximum *
42.1
36.8
13%
39.5
6%
40.4
4%
19.9
53%

* ... smaller is better

Battery Life

The Thinkpad is equipped with two 23 Wh batteries: one permanently integrated, the other one attaches externally. The latter can be swapped out for a model with 72 Wh, which would more or less double the run times. Even in the standard configuration, we can't really complain about the battery life. During our WLAN test, the Thinkpad ran for 8 hours and 21 minutes before shutting down. Here, a scrip opens a new website every 40 seconds. The display brightness is set to about 150 cd/m² and the balanced profile activated. The X260 does equally well during the video playback test and watching several movies in a row is not a problem. For this test, the short file Big Buck Big Buck Bunny (H.264 codec, 1920 x 1080 pixels) runs in a loop. All wireless modules are deactivated and the screen is once again set to about 150 cd/m².

Interestingly enough, the Full-HD Thinkpad lasted quite a bit longer than its HD sibling, which took us by surprise. We really don't have an explanation, as we would have expected the opposite. The hybrid HDD of the HD model can't explain the difference, as the gap is simply too large. We repeated our tests several times to eliminate possible outliers. The results were all really nearly identical.

Battery Runtime
Idle (without WLAN, min brightness)
15h 53min
NBC WiFi Websurfing Battery Test 1.3 (Edge 25.10586.0.0)
8h 21min
Big Buck Bunny H.264 1080p
7h 46min
Load (maximum brightness)
1h 32min
Lenovo ThinkPad X260-20F6007RGE
46 Wh
Lenovo ThinkPad X260-20F60041GE
46 Wh
HP EliteBook 820 G3
44 Wh
Dell Latitude 12 E7250
52 Wh
Microsoft Surface Pro 4, Core i5, 128GB
38 Wh
Battery Runtime
5%
6%
-4%
0%
Reader / Idle
953
795
-17%
826
-13%
845
-11%
899
-6%
H.264
466
386
-17%
495
6%
402
-14%
WiFi v1.3
501
396
-21%
373
-26%
427
-15%
Load
92
160
74%
144
57%
103
12%
111
21%
WiFi
446

Pros

+ matte IPS display
+ Full-HD resolution
+ excellent keyboard
+ long battery life
+ fast SSD
+ LTE modem
+ 3-year warranty

Cons

- only one RAM slot
- no maintenance cover

Verdict

In review: Lenovo ThinkPad X260. Test model courtesy of campuspoint.de
In review: Lenovo ThinkPad X260. Test model courtesy of campuspoint.de

Lenovo's Thinkpad X260 is a thoroughly executed and solid 12.5-inch business notebook. The X260 we reviewed not long ago was an entry-level machine; the review notebook on the other hand is the top-of-the-line model in the series. The build quality is high and the notebook quite sturdy overall. The CPU provide ample processing power. 

The Core i7 is a little faster than the Core i5 CPU the previously-tested version was equipped with. During daily use, the difference is not really noticeable. Users who do not require the additional processing power should stick with the i5 version and save some money in the process.

Despite the ample processing power and the compact chassis design, the notebook neither gets very noisy nor hot. The fast SSD guarantees a speedy system and - at 512 GB capacity - features ample storage. If so desired, the SSD could be swapped out for an even higher-capacity HDD, even though there isn't a maintenance cover (though the bottom of the base unit is removable). As expected for a business notebook, the X260 comes with an excellent keyboard. The battery life is very decent and can be improved with the optional 72 Wh battery. So equipped, the battery life should almost double.

The Full-HD display is pretty impressive as well. The panel is bright and offers lots of contrast and a great viewing angle stability. There is no question that it is superior to the regular HD display, which is also available on certain models. In addition, the Full-HD display doesn't exhibit any PWM flickering and it is brighter to boot, so it's the much better choice for outdoor use.

Lenovo ThinkPad X260-20F6007RGE - 05/26/2016 v5.1
Sascha Mölck

Chassis
80 /  98 → 82%
Keyboard
92%
Pointing Device
85%
Connectivity
70 / 80 → 88%
Weight
70 / 35-78 → 81%
Battery
90%
Display
88%
Games Performance
54 / 68 → 79%
Application Performance
85 / 87 → 97%
Temperature
88 / 91 → 97%
Noise
95%
Audio
60 / 91 → 66%
Average
80%
87%
Subnotebook - Weighted Average

Pricecompare

Read all 5 comments / answer
static version load dynamic
Loading Comments
Comment on this article
Please share our article, every link counts!
> Notebook / Laptop Reviews and News > Reviews > Lenovo ThinkPad X260 (Core i7, FHD) Subnotebook Review
Sascha Mölck, 2016-06-10 (Update: 2018-05-15)
Bernhard Pechlaner
Bernhard Pechlaner - Review Editor
Ended up in the IT sector in the 90s more or less accidentally and have remained in the industry (as a sysadmin) ever since. Always been interested in laptops - first purchase was - if memory serves correctly - a Toshiba Satellite T2115CS with DX4-75 processor, 4 MB of RAM and 350 MB hard disk drive (and Windows 3.1). To this day, laptops appeal to me - much to the chagrin of my wife, who doesn’t seem understand why we need 5-10 of them at any given time ;-).