Lenovo ThinkPad X13 Gen 1 review: With AMD Renoir the fastest 13-inch ThinkPad laptop

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Ryzen 4000 is currently winning market share for AMD in the laptop space. In this endeavor, the business segment probably plays an important role. A traditional compact subnotebook like the Lenovo ThinkPad X13 Gen 1 can be a great asset in the struggle for the enterprise market.

As Lenovo keeps the tried and tested design of the Lenovo ThinkPad X390 / X395, the AMD Renoir CPU with eight cores is clearly the star of this show. No other ThinkPad laptop with a 13.3-inch screen offers such a fast processor. The Intel version of the X13 and the Dell Latitude 7310 are far away from being competitive with the ThinkPad X13 AMD. The same is true for the GPU performance, which is almost good enough to compete with low-end dGPUs.

Despite the great level of performance, the ThinkPad X13 Gen 1 runs cool and quiet. Other strengths of this Lenovo X13 include the ThinkPad input devices, the amount of ports on the small chassis, the good, matte screen and the robust magnesium case. Compared with the ThinkPad X395, Wi-Fi 6 is notable as a gain.

Meanwhile, most of the problems are taken over straight from the preceding model, like the hard to reach microSD slot or the soldered RAM. Compared with the ThinkPad T14s Gen 1, the X13 has an easily replaceable keyboard but worse battery life and the keyboard is smaller in size. Speaking of the battery life: Aside from the missing Thunderbolt 3 port, this is one of the only small disadvantages compared to the Intel ThinkPad X13.

Subnotebook with a punch: There are not many compact laptops that can offer a similar performance as the ThinkPad X13 Gen 1. The biggest competitors are the bigger ThinkPad cousins and the HP EliteBook 835 G7.

We can recommend the Lenovo ThinkPad X13 Gen 1 with AMD Ryzen 4000 wholeheartedly. If one is searching for a 13.3-inch laptop, there are not many choices that offer the same level of performance. One problem may be the competition with the slightly bigger Lenovo ThinkPad T14s Gen 1 with AMD CPUs. For most users, the T14s could be the better choice.

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