Progress does not stand still, not so long ago, one of the best hybrid tablets on Chrome OS appeared on the market – the Lenovo Chromebook Duet. The device costs about 22 thousand rubles; however, it is good not only for its price.
In the Chromebook Duet, we get an impressive 64GB / 128GB of eMMC storage. Basically, the device can be thought of as a 10.1-inch tablet with a keyboard stand. Even though there is only one USB 2.0 Type-C port on the case and no 3.5mm headphone jack, this is a full-fledged Chromebook. From easy typing and smart navigation gestures to viewing the content in high quality, it has everything you need.
Price and configuration
Our review model retails for $ 279 for a 2GHz MediaTek Helio P60T dual-core processor, ARM G72 MP3 GPU, 4GB of RAM, and 64GB of eMMC flash. For $ 299, you get 128GB of internal storage. The difference between these two configurations does not exceed $ 50, so we would recommend an upgrade.
We stacked a Lenovo Chromebook Duet outfitted with a MediaTek Helio P60T processor and 4GB of RAM, 24 Google Chrome tabs. Among them was a tab that played YouTube recordings (1080p) and opened Google Docs. There was the main minor postpones when Duet stacked another Chrome tab, yet when we began composing into Google Docs, we were astonished that there was no stoppage – section by passage, no slacks.
With 5,526 purposes of by and large execution in Geekbench 4, Duet beat its rivals: the HP Chromebook x360 12b (3400), furnished with an Intel Celeron N400 with 4GB of RAM, and the HP Chromebook 14 (2733), which is controlled by Intel Celeron N3350 processors with 4 GB of RAM. Two-part harmony likewise outperformed the Chromebook normal of 5,293.
Let’s start with a tablet. On its own, with no stand cover and detachable keyboard, the Lenovo Chromebook Duet is a humble tablet with thick bezels by modern standards. The back of the tablet comes in two colours: grey and light blue. You will also find the unassuming black Chrome logo. The 8MP primary camera is located in the upper right corner of the tablet. In the top left corner, you will see “Lenovo” printed in black on a small rectangular silver plate.
The upper part of the tablet is equipped with two speakers and microphones; the lower part is equipped with Pogo contacts for attaching the keyboard. The top display bezel hides a 2MP front-facing camera. The tablet is becoming a real haven for fingerprints, so we’d recommend putting on the magnetic stand cover to avoid getting it dirty. The stand lid has a fairly business-like design that emphasizes Duet’s professional aesthetics.
You can connect more than just a stand cover for this tablet. Once you pair it with an edge-to-edge dark grey keyboard, you have a miniature laptop. You can always fold your laptop like a book, and others will be amazed at the speed at which the small laptop disappears. The Lenovo Chromebook Duet is a lightweight machine that fits easily into the small compartment of my travel bag. The entire kit, including the stand and keyboard, weighs just 900 grams. The Duet weighs less than the competing Samsung Chromebook 3 ( 1.1kg ) and the HP Chromebook x360 12b ( 1.2kg ).
Lenovo Chromebook Duet with keyboard and stand cover measures 243.8 x 170.2 x 17.8 mm, while the tablet separately measures 238.8 x 160 x 7.5 mm. The miniature laptop with Chrome OS is also smaller than its competitors.
Lenovo Chromebook Duet Tablet display
The maximum brightness of the Lenovo Chromebook Duet is 400 nits; the colours are rich and contrasting. But, the native display resolution of 1920 × 1200 pixels makes the interface elements too small. So I recommend choosing values in the range from 1622-1038 to 831-519. The default resolution is 1080×675, which makes everything look detailed enough without looking small.
Features and capabilities
The keyboard doesn’t feel small – the distance between the Q and P keys is 17.8 cm – but the auxiliary buttons on the right, like a comma and a period, are half the size of letters, and it takes some getting used to. According to Lenovo, the key travel is 1.3mm, while most other laptop makers go for 1.5mm.
On the Lenovo Chromebook Duet, the keyboard is surprisingly comfortable for typing, although it is more suitable for writing notes and emails than articles or novels. The same can be said about the display – after all, its diagonal is only 10.1 inches.
Nevertheless, there are many opportunities here. In addition to launching apps through the Google Play Store, the Chromebook Duet is capable of pairing with Android smartphones to unlock the tablet. In turn, you can type messages on the Duet keyboard – however, this will only work with the Google Messages application, and not with standard messages.
Lenovo Chromebook Duet is equipped with a 10.1-inch panel with a resolution of 1920 x 1200 pixels, expressively colourful panel. However, thick screen bezels can put you off as they have nothing to do with modern design.
However, the Duet is an inexpensive Chromebook so that we can accept the lack of thin bezels as a trade-off. The screen remained satisfactory. We could see beads of sweat on the protagonist’s forehead, bulging veins in the temples. In close-up scenes with the protagonist’s face, you can even make out the pores on the forehead. The Duet showed vibrant colours when a yellow ship appeared in the trailer, sailing among the raging waves.
The Duet screen offered the best shading array, covering 106% of the sRGB shading extent. The Samsung Chromebook 3 is all together more constrained (63%), and the HP Chromebook x360 12b has 79% sRGB inclusion. The shade of the Duet screen is additionally out in front of the classification normal (78%).
Lenovo Chromebook Duet
The Lenovo Chromebook Duet likewise flaunts high shading constancy with a close flawless 0.2 Delta-E rating (the more like 0, the better). In any case, the Samsung Chromebook 3 indicated a similar rating (0.2), while the HP Chromebook x360 12b fell behind with a rating of 0.3. Two-part harmony likewise beats the Chromebook average of 12.61. The Lenovo Chromebook Duet doesn’t offer the most splendid showcase, crushing out just 372 nits of splendour, however this little 2-in-1 sparkles more brilliant than the opponent Samsung Chromebook 3 (259) and HP Chromebook x360 12b (216). The Duet show additionally outflanked the normal brilliance for Chromebooks (270 nits).
With the most recent Chrome 81 update, Google incorporated a few new touchscreen signals that we tried different things with effectively on Lenovo Chromebook Duet, including swiping and holding to dispatch split-screen mode.
The power of the Lenovo Chromebook Duet is a moot point. On the one hand, the performance is sufficient for most everyday tasks like surfing the web, watching videos or playing something not too demanding. On the other hand, Chromebooks with ARM processors are inferior to models with x86 chipsets.
Here we get an eight-core MediaTek Helio P60T processor clocked at 2.0GHz and is one of the slowest Chromebooks on the market. If you launch several videos or tabs in the browser at the same time, the device will start to slow down noticeably. There are 4 GB of RAM and 128 GB of internal storage, which, unfortunately, cannot be expanded via memory cards. Lenovo Hybrid Device supports 802.11ac Wi-Fi and Bluetooth 4.2 wireless.
In benchmarks, the Chromebook Duet is noticeably weaker than its competitors, the HP Chromebook x360 and Lenovo Chromebook C340-11, which have an Intel Celeron processor. The only good thing about this model is battery autonomy. One charge can easily handle a full day, plus an evening of YouTube.
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So you want to know more about Duet ports? We’d ditch the plural right away – the little Chromebook only offers one USB Type-C port, which supports plug-in, data-transfer, DisplayPort and USB on the go.
There’s no headphone jack, though Lenovo has been careful enough to include a USB Type-C to 3.5mm headphone adapter with the Duet.
There is a major issue with this removable Lenovo Chromebook Duet keyboard. But first, let’s talk about the good. Attaching the magnetic keyboard is easy enough; the keys have a nice click and a decent tactile response.
And this is where we come to the disadvantage. Typing on the Duet’s cramped keyboard in the test, my typing speed dropped by almost twenty words per minute, which is very significant from a performance standpoint. The reason for such a severe drop in writing speed? Lenovo has cut the size of some of the keys in half, so it’s not easy to adapt to the Duet’s closed keyboard design.
Personally, we don’t see ourselves using this laptop as a work machine – the cramped keyboard isn’t good for extended use. We would have preferred the Duet as a laptop to take with us. This miniature Chromebook is very convenient to use at the airport, where you can access some projects in the cloud without having to carry a large laptop with you.
The 86.3 x 48.2 mm touchpad responded perfectly to Chromebook gestures, including two fingers to return to a previous page, three fingers down to open all active windows.
Sound and cameras
Speakers on small tablets rarely sound outstanding. Although they are relatively good on the Lenovo Chromebook Duet if set up correctly. Out of the box, the sound coming out is too soft, and distortion appears at maximum volume. But, after some manipulation of the settings, you can achieve decent results, albeit with a lack of low frequencies and not the purest final quality.
The 1600 x 1200 pixel webcam captures vivid and surprisingly detailed shots – great for video calls, even in low light. The main camera with a resolution of 3264 × 2448 has the excellent quality, fast autofocus and a rich set of captured colours.
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The Lenovo Chromebook Duet is equipped with a keyboard that many early adopters of the device loved. Despite the fact that it has a key journey reduced to 1.3 mm (for most devices this figure is 1.5 mm). This affected typing convenience in the best way.
At the same time, it does not seem small. The distance between the letters Q and P is 17.8 cm. A small disadvantage is that a number of auxiliary keys (comma, period) are half the size.
Most owners of this gadget agree that the optional accessory is well suited for writing emails or notes. However, articles and stories on this keyboard can also be typed.
Lenovo Chromebook Duet alternatives
For comparison, prices for Microsoft Surface Go 2 start at 30 thousand. And a complete assembly with a Type Cover keyboard case can cost more than 60 thousand rubles. Yes, the Surface Go 2 comes with a Core m3 processor and a much faster 128GB solid-state drive. But it seems a bit overpriced compared to Lenovo’s device. Other alternative models include the Apple iPad, which with 128GB of storage and a Smart Keyboard will cost over 45,000. Again, the price difference is huge.
In terms of value for money, the Lenovo Chromebook Duet performs well. This tablet with a keyboard, which is much cheaper than competing devices.
- Works very long on a single charge;
- Comes with a keyboard stand;
- Colourful and bright display;
- Decent performance for your money;
- Ultra-portable design;
- A very affordable laptop;
- The keyboard is cramped;
- No headphone jack;
Should you buy it?
Overall, Lenovo’s new Chromebook Duet is a great learning solution at a relatively reasonable price point. The tablet looks stylish and will be comfortable for Android users, while the cameras and display are of high quality. Of course, the processor is rather weak, but the device is quite suitable for basic tasks.
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