Lenovo unveiled a trio of cool new products at CES: two new all-in-ones and a 24-inch capacitive multitouch display. Impressively, the low-end IdeaCentre C310 brings two-finger multitouch to PineTrail-equipped nettops for less than five hundred dollars. Check out our video hands-on!
The Chinese OEM giant is really stepping up its game, especially as regards the design of new products. They’ve finally realized that their staid, conservative looks are keeping them pretty strictly within the business realm, at least here in America. It’s similar to the awakening Dell had several years ago, before starting upon their current concerningly downward trend.
The most stylish of the new additions is the IdeaCentre A300, which Lenovo (somewhat cheatingly) calls the thinnest all-in-one in the industry–since it doesn’t count the actual computer part of the desktop. Still, it cuts a striking figure with a 21.5-inch, LED-backlit 1080p display sitting on a lit-up, off-centered mounting pole.
The guts of the computer sit in the thin pancake below the panel. Within are a range of Intel Core 2 Duo processors, optional TV tuners, a ton of ports, 802.11n wi-fi and more—in short, a competitively powerful all-in-one in one of the most interesting packages we’ve seen.
One new product we haven’t heard much about before was their new capacitive multitouch monitor, coming in at a whopping 24 inches. The Lenovo L2461X (it rolls so easily off of the tongue) costs a wallet-busting $650, which is pretty pricey when looking at alternatives from HP and Dell. Of course, they use optical touch recognition instead of capacitive, but in usage scenarios like this, I’m not sure it matters. The L2461X brings built-in stereo speakers, webcam, and a full range of capacitive touch sensors along the bottom of the display. The buttons can be changed to launch your internet browser as well as other apps. Additionally, like the HP TouchSmarts, there’s an LED light bar along the bottom of the display that can be switched to whatever color you like by swiping your finger alonger a sensor. It’s very neat, but I’m not sure if the price is at-all worth it.
The Lenovo IdeaCentre C310 is an update to the Atom-based nettop C300 that we’ve reviewed in the past. Lenovo mentioned today that this unit will be PineTrail-based, but all of their press materials are listing an Atom 330 (in addition to a price point $150 higher than what they discussed).
The multitouch is nice, but at $650 the C310 is something of a conundrum – neat features, but just like the L2461X, it’s pretty expensive.
Finally, Lenovo is also introducing a performance-oriented consumer desktop in the form of the IdeaCentre K320—a first for their efforts in the American market. It will use an Intel Core i3 CPU and start at around $600, but like actual gaming systems from other companies, that price can shoot dramatically upward with the addition of high performance components such as an ATI Radeon HD5970 graphics card, faster CPU and Blu-ray capabilities. It’s a fairly stylish desktop for Lenovo, and it’s interesting to see whether they can compete in the performance segment of the market. It’s certainly a new direction for the company, and only time will tell if it’s the right move.
That does it for new Lenovo desktops from CES! Be sure to check out our sister site NotebookReview.com for coverage of Lenovo’s mobile efforts, and don’t forget to check back here for the latest from CES 2010 in Las Vegas.