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Best Lenovo Miix 320 Black Friday Deals 2021
Initially, the keyboard and tablet of the Lenovo IdeaPad Miix 320 (starts at $199.99; $299.99 as tested) are so well-integrated that you may not even understand that that is a detachable 2-in-1. A simple Windows 10 laptop, it really is transformed right into a 10-inch tablet by detatching its magnetically attached keyboard. As may be the case using its budget-price ilk, it is best fitted to light-duty tasks instead of media creation or gaming, either for a comparatively undemanding user or for someone buying a second computer for the street. Still, you get yourself a USB-C port and a lot more than 13 hours of battery life so that it is an Editors’ Choice for convertible laptops.
Laptop or Stealth Tablet
Measuring just 0.4 by 9.8 by 7 inches with keyboard attached and weighing 2.2 pounds (1.2 of these being the tablet itself), the Miix 320 is small and lightweight. It isn’t as light as a few of its competition, though: The Acer Switch 3 weighs 1.98 pounds, and the Asus Transformer Mini is a feathery 1.75 pounds using its keyboard cover. Its sleek matte-silver frame feels reasonably sturdy, and you could easily think the it had been solely a notebook computer until you explored it for some time.
As a detachable hybrid, you will find a hinge on the keyboard part of the device with two magnetized tabs that match holes in the tablet portion’s edge and securely contain the screen set up. You can adapt your viewing angle to 125 degrees by swiveling the screen in the hinge, just as you’ll with a one-piece laptop. The screen is straightforward enough to pull clear of the keyboard with somewhat of pressure when you wish to go tablet-only, but you’re unlikely to accidentally detach it. Unlike some models, like the Asus Transformer Mini (T102HA-D4-GR), you can’t insert the tablet backward to fold it back along with the keyboard.
The Miix 320 has two cameras, a 2-megapixel front-facing selfie camera and a 5MP rear camera for conventional shooting. Unsurprising considering its 10-inch screen, the keyboard is a bit more compressed than your typical 13-inch laptop, with slightly less space between your chiclet-style keys. The letter keys are full-size and run almost to the edge of the laptop’s frame, making as full use as possible of the 9.8-inch width. Although my typing experience wasn’t quite as comfortable since it usually is on a more substantial keyboard, I quickly got used to it. The touchpad is responsive, and its own left- and right-click zones in the bottom are set to react to a comfortable pressure.
The model I tested sports a 10.1-inch screen with native WXGA (1,280-by-800) resolution. That is clearly a common resolution for a detachable hybrid; the Asus Transformer Mini, Lenovo IdeaPad Miix 310, and HP Pavilion x2 (10-n123dx), to mention a few, have the same. The aspect ratio is 16:10, just a little taller than widescreen models, offering more vertical space for office-type documents. (Higher-end versions of the Miix 320 use WUXGA (1,920-by-1,080) native resolution displays.) The screen is fairly bright and the audio system is of decent quality and really should be ideal for a tiny room.
The 320 runs Windows 10 Home. Beneath the hood on our review unit, there’s a 1.44GHz Intel Atom x5-Z8350 processor, integrated Intel HD Graphics, 4GB of RAM, and 128GB of eMMC flash storage up to speed. (The $199 base model has half the storage and memory.) The left and right side of the keyboard each have a USB 2.0 port. On the left side (when mounted on the keyboard) of the tablet will be the power socket, an on-off button, and a volume-control rocker. Although also you can control the quantity from the microphone icon in your tray or from the keyboard if it is attached, the physical volume control is a good convenience, particularly if you’re using the 320 in tablet mode.
On the proper side, there exists a tiny hole for the built-in microphone, a headphone socket, a mini HDMI port, and, most significant, a USB-C port. (Of the systems mentioned here, the HP Pavilion x2 may be the only other someone to include this connector.) Along the tablet edge that connects to the hinge, and hidden from view when the 320 is in notebook computer mode, is a microSD card slot.
A Laptop for Light-Duty Tasks
The combo of the Intel Atom x5-Z8350 processor and Intel integrated graphics produced benchmark scores typical of the 320’s ilk, rendering it best for emails, web surfing, business documents, and media consumption. In PCMark 8 Work Conventional, which measures overall system performance in a number of tasks, the 320 scored 1,451 points, at the reduced end of an exceptionally narrow selection of scores (up to at least one 1,478). Its scores in multimedia tests were in what I’d expect. It narrowly earned the very best score (106) in CineBench R15, which measures hardware and processing performance, and had an intermediate score in the Handbrake video encoding test. It took a lot more than 17 minutes to complete our Photoshop test, but so did the others of our comparison systems. You will not be doing video production with it, or using it in your image studio, but at least it could run Photoshop, which some budget laptops cannot do.
OBSERVE HOW We Test Laptops
Needlessly to say for low-priced detachable hybrids, 3D gaming is not a strong suit. When I tested it on both Heaven and Valley at medium detail settings and 1,366-by-768 resolution, it turned in rates of only 4 and 5 fps (fps), respectively, while we consider 30fps the threshold for smooth gameplay. At 1,920 by 1,080 with high detail enabled, it limped in at 2 and 3fps, respectively. In fairness, though, the other budget detachable hybrids submit equally dismal scores.
We expect an extended battery life from detachable hybrids, and we weren’t disappointed with the 320, which played our test video for 13 hours, 25 minutes before shutting down. Though it falls short of the Lenovo Miix 310, which turned in a phenomenal 16:26, and the Asus T102HA, which we timed at 14:14, it’s outmatched in the category, substantially outlasting the HP Pavilion x2’s 10:39.
SUCCESSFUL on Value and Features
Detachable hybrids will be the Transformers of the computer world, in the home as the tablet or a laptop, as needed. For high-end detachable hybrids including the Microsoft Surface Book , performance is king and price is no object. Budget detachables are in the other end of the spectrum, where good deal and good user experience are paramount, and a slightly better feature set could make a large difference.
During testing, my experience with the Lenovo IdeaPad Miix 320 was smooth and enjoyable, despite its small keyboard. A strong feel and good magnetic connection between keyboard and tablet increase its appeal. It really is substantially improved from last year’s Miix 310, with an increase of memory and storage, in addition to the addition of a USB-C port. That also sets it aside from our previous top pick, the Asus T102HA, which is practically $100 more costly and adds a stylus and keyboard cover to the mix, but lacks the 320’s USB-C port. USB-C permits you to connect, via an adapter, with multiple sources simultaneously including HDMI, VGA, DisplayPort, USB 2.0 and 3.0, and even Ethernet. That along using its cheap are enough to help make the Miix 320 our new Editors’ Choice budget detachable hybrid tablets.