A VAR Guy Preview: Lenovo’s New IdeaPad U260
Lenovo has graciously loaned us the new IdeaPad U260 for review. Designed to be an ultra-thin and ultra-light 13-inch notebook, what can we expect performance-wise? Here are a few of my first impressions upon unpacking the unit, as well as a few things I’ll be looking at during my review.
I’ve been awfully enamored with my new MacBook Air, and when I unpacked the U260, I noticed it looks like Lenovo might have been, too. The case the U260 came in was nearly a part-per-part clone of the MacBook Air packaging, right down to the foam on the inside top case. The only exception was the color — all black.
After unpacking the unit, I was impressed by the 13-inch U260’s solid build. In fact, its design and density reminds me of a thin, leather-bound volume. The orange (or brown; you can pick) case has a matte, rubbery-like finish that’s pleasing to the touch, and when the machine is opened, a leather palm rest awaits your wrists. It’s pretty, it doesn’t weight too much, and it’s surprisingly well-built and integrated. The bottom of most PC laptops are a mess of ports, vents and screws and covers, but the U260 simply has ventilation slats. Nice job.
But it can’t just look pretty. It has to pass some serious user tests for me to feel really connected to the computer. If the U260 and I are going to go all the way, here’s what I need to find out about it:
- Battery life: Ultra-portalables are all about ultra-battery life. I’m spoiled right now with my MacBook Air 11 inch. I regularly exceed the five-hour mark that Apple boasts. Can Lenovo beat or even meet that?
- Performance: It’s running Windows 7 Home Premium and I’ll be testing responsiveness, speed and maybe a few games here and there.
- Usability: How does the keyboard feel? The trackpad? Buttons? How quickly does the device wake from sleep?
- Quality: Does the device hold up under heavy use, or does it seem likely to need repairs inside the first year of use?
Have anything you’d like me to check out specifically on the U260? Drop a comment and I’ll check it out.