Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon Gen 10 review: all business

Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon Gen 10

MSRP $1,680.00

“The Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon Gen 10 is not a performer, but excels in battery life and security.”


  • Solid construct quality
  • Dizzying array of display options
  • Excellent keyboard
  • Above-average battery life
  • Good business support


  • Touchpad is simply too small
  • Expensive for the performance

A laptop needs to be fairly refined by the point it’s hit its tenth generation. That’s particularly true with one as iconic because the Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon, the corporate’s marquee business-oriented thin and lightweight laptop.

Lenovo didn’t mark the X1 Carbon’s tenth generation with a spectacular reworking. As a substitute, it further refines the celebrated design with a couple of small but meaningful refinements, because it’s been doing in every generation since its launch.

These small tweaks, alongside an update to Intel’s Twelfth-gen CPUs, leave this premium business laptop at the highest of its game, even when its price still doesn’t make it a very realistic mainstream consumer option.

Price and configurations

Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon Gen 10 rear view showing lid and logo.Mark Coppock/Digital Trends

I reviewed a $1,680 configuration with a Core i7-1260P CPU and a 14-inch 16:10 UXWGA (1920 x 1200) low-power IPS display.

In fact, Lenovo provides several other configuration options with the ThinkPad X1 Carbon Gen 10. CPUs range from the 28-watt, 12-core/16-thread Core i5-1540P to the 28-watt 14-core/20-thread Core i7-1280P with vPro. As we’ll see within the display section below, there are a dizzying variety of display options that make it possible (if difficult) to dial in exactly the specified efficiency and display resolution and quality.

Regarding pricing and using Lenovo’s configurator, things start at $1,320 for a Core i5-1540P, 8GB of LPDDR5 RAM, a 256GB PCIe SSD, and a 14-inch 16:10 WUXGA (1920 x 1200) low-power, anti-glare IPS display. On the high end, you’ll spend $2,595 for a Core i7-1280P with vPro, 32GB of RAM, a 2TB PCIe 4.0 SSD, 4G LTE, and a 14-inch 16:10 WQUXGA (3840 x 2400) anti-reflective, anti-smudge touch display.

These are steep discounts from the retail prices, and so they aren’t out of line for the business audience that’s more likely to be most desirous about the ThinkPad X1 Carbon Gen 10. By way of price, it’s inexpensive than the more powerful Apple MacBook Pro 14 and around the identical price as a similarly configured Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Yoga Gen 7.


Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon Gen 10 front angled view showing display and keyboard deck.Mark Coppock/Digital Trends

The ThinkPad X1 Carbon Gen 10 enjoys the identical thin and lightweight chassis as before, constructed of magnesium alloy within the chassis and carbon fiber within the lid. It’s subjected to the same old military testing for robustness as all ThinkPads. Still, like most laptops with magnesium and carbon fiber, there’s some bending within the lid and flexing within the keyboard deck.

Within the ThinkPad’s case, though, it’s very minor and most of the people won’t notice it, however it doesn’t quite live as much as the standards of more solid machines just like the Dell XPS 15 and the MacBook Pro 14. The hinge is perfectly balanced, light enough to open the lid with one hand but stiff enough to carry the display in place.

The magnesium and carbon fiber do bring a meaningful profit by way of the ThinkPad’s weight, which is available in at just 2.48 kilos. It’s also thin at 0.60 inches, with larger bezels for a contemporary laptop and thus more width and depth than some.

What can I say? The most recent ThinkPad X1 looks precisely like a ThinkPad.

By comparison, the solid aluminum MacBook Pro 14 with a 14.2-inch display weighs 3.5 kilos and is 0.61 inches thick, while being just barely thinner and shallower despite the larger panel. The MSI Prestige 14, then again, is a little bit wider and a little bit shallower while weighing a whopping 4.64 kilos and coming in at 0.63 inches thick. The ThinkPad X1 Carbon Gen 10 is considered one of the lighter 14-inch laptops around while being reasonably sized in all dimensions.

Aesthetically, what can I say? The ThinkPad X1 Carbon Gen 10 looks precisely like a ThinkPad — all-black chassis, minimalist lines and angles, red LED do on the stylized ThinkPad X1 logo on the lid and red TrackPoint nubbin in the midst of the keyboard. It’s a conservative, iconic design that’s recognizable from a distance. Ultimately, it’s more striking than simplistic machines just like the Prestige 14 and Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Yoga Gen 7, while being less elegant than the MacBook Pro 14. But no person can be embarrassed taking it right into a business meeting.

Ports and connections

Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon Gen 10 left side view showing ports.

lenovo thinkpad x1 carbon gen 10 review right side

Connectivity is generally solid for a 14-inch machine, with two USB-C ports with Thunderbolt 4 support, two USB-A 3.2 Gen 1 ports, a full-size HDMI 2.0b port, and a 3.5mm audio jack. There’s no SD card reader, which is disappointing.

Wi-Fi 6E and Bluetooth 5.2 provide the newest in wireless connectivity, and a Nano SIM slot is optional supporting 4G LTE WWAN.

Keyboard, touchpad, and webcam

Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon Gen 10 top down view showing keyboard and touchpad.Mark Coppock/Digital Trends

The ThinkPad X1 Carbon Gen 10’s keyboard has barely modified from the usual ThinkPad version. The keycaps are squared off, giving a more streamlined appearance and, in my view, a greater feel. The switches seemed a bit lighter than many ThinkPads I’ve tested, and that’s an improvement in my book. I’ve normally found ThinkPad keyboards to require an excessive amount of force. There’s still loads of travel and a precise, snappy bottoming motion, making it a wonderful keyboard for long typing sessions. Lenovo also built air intake holes into the keyboard to enhance thermal performance, and waterproof seals maintain the keyboard’s spill resistance. The layout stays the identical, including the odd swapping of the left Fn and Ctrl keys.

The touchpad is wider than previous models and still hosts two buttons to support the red TrackPoint nubbin in the midst of the keyboard. That makes the touchpad barely larger than up to now but still smaller than you’ll find on many competitive 14-inch laptops. Its glass surface is smooth and provides reliable support for Windows 11 multitouch gestures. And the TrackPoint works in addition to ever for those ThinkPad diehards preferring it.

Windows 11 Hello passwordless support is provided by a fingerprint reader built into the ability button embedded within the deck above the keyboard. The ability button’s placement helps avoid by chance pressing the unsuitable key, and the fingerprint reader worked quickly and reliably in my testing.

Finally, the webcam is Full HD (1080p) and has a webcam privacy shutter. The webcam provides excellent video quality in normal and low-light environments and will meet anyone’s videoconferencing needs. There are alternatives for a Full HD webcam with infrared for facial recognition and one other with Lenovo’s Computer Vision technology.


Intel’s Twelfth-gen Core i7-1260P is our most-reviewed CPU during the last several months. It’s popular amongst thin and lightweight laptops just like the Carbon X1 Carbon, and we’ve seen some stratification within the chip’s performance. As a 28-watt, 12-core (4 Performance and eight Efficient), 16-thread processor, the Core i7-1260P has provided a minimum of solid productivity performance, but some laptops have performed higher than others. The Acer Swift 3 2022 and MSI Prestige 14 are two laptops that provided overall superior performance than the common, while the ThinkPad X1 Carbon Gen 10 is amongst those providing significantly less performance.

That’s not a surprise given how previous models in the road have handled performance. This ThinkPad was particularly slow in our CPU-intensive benchmarks in comparison with competitors, including video encoding in Handbrake and the 3D rendering benchmark in Cinebench R23. The laptop’s PCMark 10 Complete result, a measure of a mixture of productivity, multimedia, and inventive tasks, was also lower than the common and even fell behind the ninth generation model with a Core i7-1165G7.

Performance didn’t live as much as this CPU’s potential.

Oddly enough, I used Lenovo’s thermal management utility, and it performed worse in some tests in performance mode than in balanced mode.

Despite having a better wattage chip inside, the ThinkPad X1 Carbon Gen 7 performed more just like the Dell Inspiron 14 2-in-1 with a 15-watt, 10-core (two Performance and eight Efficient), 12-core Core i7-1255U. I can’t say that the ThinkPad suffered from any unusual issues with throttling, a minimum of not more than the remainder of the thin-and-light field, however it didn’t perform as much as this CPU’s potential.

In fact, that doesn’t mean you’ll notice. It’s still a quick enough laptop for demanding productivity tasks, and it’s faster than Intel’s Eleventh-gen equivalents generally. However the ThinkPad’s ability to handle heavier tasks in creative applications is significantly lower than with another competitive machines.

(single / multi)
Cinebench R23
(single / multi)
PCMark 10
Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon Gen 10
(Core i7-1260P)
Bal: 1,531 / 8,209
Perf: 1,580 / 8,342
Bal: 133
Perf: 138
Bal: 1,538 / 6,993
Perf: 1,538 / 6,783
Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon Gen 9
(Core i7-1165G7)
Bal: 1,327 / 5,201
Perf: 1,556 / 5,490
Bal: 170
Perf: 190
Bal: 1,469 / 4945
Perf: 1,463 / 4,968
MSI Prestige 14
(Core i7-1260P)
Bal: 1,505 / 10,041
Perf: 1,477 / 10,604
Bal: 114
Perf: 97
Bal: 1,553 / 8,734
Perf: 1,567 / 10,450
Acer Swift 3 2022
(Core i7-1260P)
Bal: 1,708 / 10,442
Perf: 1,694 / 10,382
Bal: 100
Perf: 98
Bal: 1,735 / 9,756
Perf: 1,779 / 10,165
Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Yoga Gen 7
(Core i7-1260P)
Bal: 1,650 / 8,080
Perf: 1,621 / 8,544
Bal: 116
Perf: 120
Bal: 1,587 / 7,682
Perf: 1,611 / 8,078
MSI Summit E14 Flip
(Core i7-1260P)
Bal: 1,485 / 7,732
Perf: 1,472 / 10,276
Bal: 152
Perf: 94
Bal: 1,536 / 6,793
Perf: 1,536 / 9,124
Dell Inspiron 14 2-in-1
(Core i7-1255U)
Bal: 1,703 / 6,520
Perf: 1,685 / 6,791
Bal: 153
Perf: 141
Bal: 1,729 / 6,847
Perf: 1,773 / 7,009
Asus Zenbook S 13 OLED
(Ryzen 7 6800U)
Bal: 1,417 / 6,854
Perf: 1,404 / 7,223
Bal: 112
Perf: 111
Bal: 1,402 / 8,682
Perf: 1,409 / 8,860

The ThinkPad X1 Carbon Gen 10 utilizes Intel’s Iris Xe graphics, and it was a mean performer in each the 3DMark Time Spy benchmark and Fortnite at 1200p and epic graphics. You’ll need to limit your gaming to older titles and esports.

Time Spy
(1080p/1200p Epic)
Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon Gen 10
(Intel Iris Xe)
Bal: 1,816
Perf: 1,820
Bal: 17 fps
Perf: 16 fps
MSI Prestige 14
(RTX 3050)
Bal: 4,438
Perf: 4,451
Bal: 23
Perf: 26
Acer Swift 3 2022
(Intel Iris Xe)
Bal: 1,967
Perf: 1,967
Bal: 19 fps
Perf: 19 fps
Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Yoga Gen 7
(Intel Iris Xe)
Bal: 1,899
Perf: 1,886
Bal: 17 fps
Perf: 16 fps
MSI Summit E14 Flip
(Intel Iris Xe)
Bal: 1,740
Perf: 1,959
Bal: 15 fps
Perf: 19 fps
Dell Inspiron 14 2-in-1
(Intel Iris Xe)
Bal: 1,492
Perf: 1,502
Bal: fps
Perf: fps
Asus Zenbook S 13 OLED
(Radeon graphics)
Bal: 2,110
Perf: 2,213
Bal: 19 fps
Perf: 19 fps

Display and audio

Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon Gen 10 front view showing display.Mark Coppock/Digital Trends

Lenovo offers a mind-boggling assortment of display options for the ThinkPad X1 Carbon Gen 10. There are seven 14-inch 16:10 panels to pick from, differentiated by an alphabet soup of acronyms. First, there are three WUXGA (1920 x 1200) LP (low-power), AG (anti-glare) panels, one non-touch and two touch-enabled. One in all the WUXGA displays with touch includes Lenovo’s Privacy Guard feature. Next is a 2.2K (2240 x 1400) AG IPS screen, followed by a 2.8K (2880 x 1800) OLED AGARAS (anti-glare, anti-reflection, anti-smudge) display. Finally, there are two WQUXA (3840 x 2400) IPS displays, one LP AG non-touch and one LP AOFT (Add-on Film Touch) AGARAS touch.


My review unit was equipped with the WUXGA LP AG touch display, which seemed effective during my testing. It was plenty brilliant, colours seemed dynamic without being oversaturated, and blacks were deep for an IPS panel.

My colorimeter confirmed my subjective experience. The display hit 411 nits of brightness, which is well above our 300-nit threshold and greater than brilliant enough for any indoor lighting condition you’re more likely to face. Its contrast was also excellent at 1660:1, well concerning the 1000:1 we prefer to see in premium displays. That resulted in true blacks, for instance, text that pops on a white background (my personal standard) and lots of detail in dark images.

Colours hit the premium laptop average of 98% of sRGB and 76% of AdobeRGB, although I’ve seen more displays currently falling within the 80s for AdobeRGB. Color accuracy was okay at a DeltaE of 1.96, below the two.0 mark that’s the minimum for creative work but still higher than I prefer to see. The MSI Summit E14 Flip and Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Yoga Gen 7 had wider and more accurate colours.

This is a wonderful display for productivity staff and media consumers, however it falls in need of what creators are searching for. Nevertheless, Lenovo offers so many display options that definitely anybody can dial in a display that can meet their needs.

Contrast sRGB gamut AdobeRGB gamut Accuracy DeltaE
(lower is healthier)
Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon Gen 10
411 1660:1 98% 76% 1.96
MSI Prestige 14
317 1820:1 97% 72% 3.67
Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Yoga Gen 7
386 1900:1 100% 81% 0.78
MSI Summit E14 Flip
516 1320:1 100% 89% 1.10
Lenovo Yoga 9i 14 Gen 7
406 28380:1 100% 95% 0.87
Lenovo IdeaPad Slim 7 Carbon
397 27590:1 100% 96% 0.88

Two downward-firing speakers put out a surprising amount of volume, and the standard was higher than I expected. Together with clean mids and highs without distortion, I heard a touch of bass. The speakers were strong enough for Netflix binging sessions and informal music listening, although a superb pair of headphones will still provide the very best quality.

Battery life

Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon Gen 10 side view showing lid and ports.Mark Coppock/Digital Trends

My review unit used a 28-watt CPU and a low-power WUXGA (also often called Full HD+) display. Its 57 watt-hours of battery capability is a little bit light for a 14-inch laptop, especially in comparison with the Lenovo Yoga 9i Gen 7 with its 75 watt-hour battery. I wasn’t expecting all-day battery life.

After running our suite of battery benchmarks, I got here away mostly impressed. Its 7.5 hours in our web browsing test that cycles through a series of complex web sites is about half an hour lower than we prefer to see, however it was competitive amongst our comparison group. The Yoga 9i Gen 7 lasted longer, as did the Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Yoga Gen 7 (with 71 watt-hours) and the AMD-equipped Asus ZenBook S 13 OLED with a power-hungry display. Even so, the ThinkPad did okay. In our video test that loops a neighborhood Full HD Avengers trailer, it lasted for 14.5 hours, a robust rating likely due to its low-power display. And at last, within the PCMark 10 Applications test that’s the very best indication of productivity battery life, the ThinkPad X1 Carbon Gen 10 made it to 10.75 hours, an above-average result.

Overall, the ThinkPad’s battery life is pretty good, promising a full day’s work unless you push the CPU. You’ll get less out of a few of the available higher-resolution displays in addition to the OLED option, but follow this display and also you won’t have to carry your charger with you.

Web browsing Video PCMark 10
Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon Gen 10
(Core i7-1260P)
7 hours, 39 minutes 14 hours, 34 minutes 10 hours, 42 minutes
MSI Prestige 14
(Core i7-1260P)
5 hours, 11 minutes 6 hours, 2 minutes 7 hours, 2 minutes
Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Yoga Gen 7
(Core i7-1260P)
10 hours, 10 minutes 16 hours, 12 minutes 10 hours, 33 minutes
MSI Summit E14 Flip
(Core i7-1260P)
7 hours, 23 minutes 9 hours, 0 minutes 7 hours, 54 minutes
Lenovo Yoga 9i 14 Gen 7
(Core i7-1260P)
9 hours, 10 minutes 12 hours, 45 minutes 8 hours, 32 minutes
Dell Inspiron 14 2-in-1
(Core i7-1255U)
6 hours, 42 minutes 11 hours, 6 minutes 8 hours, 43 minutes
 Asus Zenbook S 13 OLED
(Ryzen 7 6800U)
8 hours, 4 minutes 13 hours, 13 minutes N/A

Our take

The Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon Gen 10 is a well-built and highly configurable laptop with options for the type of management and security that companies crave. For that audience, it’s a solid offering at a good price.

For anyone else, the ThinkPad’s performance is lacking and it doesn’t offer as much to justify its high price. ThinkPad fans will adore it, but other mainstream buyers should do their shopping first.

Are there any alternatives?

Dell’s Latitude 7430 is a possible alternative for the business market, offering similar management and security and an identical pricing scheme. It doesn’t offer the identical breadth of display offerings because the ThinkPad.

Lenovo’s Yoga 9i Gen 7 is a robust competitor for the mainstream market, offering a more stunning design, the flexibleness of a 2-in-1, higher performance, and similar battery life. It costs a bit less as well.

Finally, Apple’s MacBook Pro 14 is a compelling option that’s exceptionally well-built and offers superior performance and battery life. It offers only one display option, however it’s nearly as good as anything Lenovo has to supply. You’ll spend a bit more on the high end, though.

How long will it last?

The ThinkPad X1 Carbon Gen 10 is well-built and will last for years of typical abuse. Its components are fully updated and can keep Windows 11 humming along. I’m glad to see the three-year warranty, which needs to be included with all business class and premium laptops.

Must you buy it?

Yes, when you’re a businessperson who will profit from plugging into an enterprise environment or a ThinkPad fan who’s searching for the newest and best.

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