Lenovo IdeaPad Miix 630-12Q35 looks the same as other 2-in-1 laptops with Windows 10. This device is not installed with an Intel processor or Snapdragon. The “Windows on ARM” architecture should combine the advantages of the energy efficiency of smartphone iron with the functionality of laptops. The test results turned out to be so-so: the battery life of the hybrid device is really excellent, but its poor performance entails serious limitations.
Lenovo IdeaPad Miix 630-12Q35 test and review
The idea itself is good: in many Android smartphones, Snapdragon processors from the manufacturer Qualcomm provide the highest performance when using demanding applications and mobile gaming. Thus, on the surface lay the idea of embedding mobile “hardware” not only in smartphones and tablets but also in laptops, in order to benefit from the long duration of battery life. It was for this purpose that Microsoft made its Windows operating system compatible with Snapdragon processors and called the experiment “Windows on ARM” technology.
The hybrid tablet and laptop Lenovo IdeaPad Miix 630-12Q35 (81F1000QGE) is just one of these innovative devices. Inside the tablet module, the Qualcomm Snapdragon 835 is installed, that is, a mobile processor with eight nominal cores and an Adreno 540 graphics chip. This hardware is identical to what can be found in the Samsung Galaxy Tab S4, currently, the best tablet based on our test results. But the IdeaPad Miix 630 is not an Android device, but a regular laptop with Windows 10 S.
“2 in 1” device with “Windows on ARM”: innovation with dirty tricks
In practice, the disadvantages of the “Windows on ARM” architecture are beginning to manifest themselves. In fact, it is the reason why the lightweight and performance-optimized version of Windows 10 S is installed on the Lenovo device: only this way the IdeaPad Miix 630 reaches an acceptable power level. The results of the launch of benchmarks are hard to compare with the indicators of other devices of our respective rating, since many utilities on this system do not function at all. According to the results of measurements on the remaining benchmarks, the IdeaPad Miix 630 can boast only a third of the performance of devices with Intel Core processors.
The pre-installed Windows 10 S operating system allows you to install applications only from the Windows Store. Then they also function flawlessly, especially in areas such as office work and text editing. Otherwise, however, will have to endure strong limitations. Lenovo offers IdeaPad Miix 630 customers a free upgrade to Windows 10 Pro. Theoretically, the transition makes the device in the format “2 in 1” a full-fledged laptop, but at the same time, it seriously loses in performance.
In general, application compatibility with ARM architecture suffers greatly. Customized Microsoft’s own applications, such as Edge browser or Office, work without problems. But non-optimized x86 applications must be emulated by the processor, which significantly affects the speed. 64-bit applications on the ARM architecture basically do not function, and all hope is only their 32-bit variants. In addition, if the user wants to connect peripherals to the Lenovo IdeaPad Miix 630, he will need the appropriate ARM drivers. All this can quickly get boring.
Lenovo IdeaPad Miix 630-12Q35 test and review: an amazing experiment 2 in 1Lenovo IdeaPad Miix 630 with “Windows on ARM”: revolutionary endurance has a downside
Outstanding battery life
But the biggest advantage of mobile equipment is its low power consumption. Lenovo advertises 20 hours of battery life for the IdeaPad Miix 630. In fact, with the device we tested, we were able to schedule 15 hours and 50 minutes of continuous video playback until the battery becomes empty. When surfing the web, the battery was able to last 12 hours and 03 minutes. This is an impressive battery life and it clearly demonstrates what mobile technology is capable of. Nevertheless, the question remains as to what the benefits of the fact that the device can work all day long, but it has such limitations in operation.
However, there is nothing that the Lenovo IdeaPad Miix 630 could find fault within the field of ergonomics. The tablet part and keyboard dock are ideally connected to each other. By itself, the device boasts good workmanship, and thanks to the metal case looks expensive. However, the “elegant” look of this “2 in 1” format cannot be called. Dimensions of the tablet with its 293×210 mm are standard among hybrid devices. Since the dock does not have its own battery, the Lenovo device is a bit flatter. Thanks to the powerful magnets under the cradle, the tablet is connected to the keyboard securely.
Lenovo IdeaPad Miix 630-12Q35 test and review: an amazing experiment 2 in 1Lenovo IdeaPad Miix 630: good workmanship and easy operation
Tablet with a good touch Full-HD-display
12.3-inch touchscreen display It has a maximum resolution of 1920×1280 pixels. The IPS-LCD panel covers 100 percent of the sRGB color space and gives the image a pleasant clarity. The maximum brightness measured by us at 357.6 cd / m2 is only average compared with other devices in the 2-in-1 format. In the field of chess contrast, the indicator is also quite low – 112: 1. But in general, the image quality is very good. The touch function of the display and the included stylus functions flawlessly.
On the hardware, Lenovo saves: in the dock, there are no interfaces, but at least the tablet has USB Type-C ports with support for the Thunderbolt protocol and DisplayPort 1.2 for charging the battery and connecting peripheral devices. On board, there is also a slot for memory cards of standard Micro-SD, and a slot for Nano-SIM-card. All devices with “Windows on ARM” technology imply that the LTE module is responsible for communication. In addition to him, the user will have WLAN and Bluetooth 4.1. The choice of Lenovo offers models with 128- and 256-gigabyte flash drives.
The biggest disadvantage of devices with “Windows on ARM”, which are still on the market, is their high cost. It is significantly higher than that of comparable devices with “notebook” processors from Intel or AMD. The same goes for the Lenovo IdeaPad Miix 630: the 128-gigabyte version costs about 70,000 rubles (with delivery, you can buy it here), and the 256-gigabyte version is about 7,000 rubles more. In the ranks of the hybrids of tablets and laptops, there are much more affordable alternatives, including even among the usual Lenovo IdeaPad-Miix assortment.
Generally speaking, it should be recognized that the “Windows on ARM” architecture, while offering interesting and innovative approaches, but the long battery life alone cannot compensate for all weaknesses. 2-in-1 devices with Snapdragon processors remain primarily a niche product for a limited target audience. Even Microsoft itself creates competition for its idea of “Windows on ARM” and sells “2 in 1” in the person of Surface Go at a “combat” price of about 500 euros. The Intel Pentium Gold dual-core processor in the Windows-10-S device provides approximately the same level of performance as the Snapdragon 835 in the IdeaPad Miix 630, and the Surface Go battery lasts about 9 hours.
At the moment, the technology “Windows on ARM” needs more time to develop and get rid of “childhood diseases”. Many manufacturers are working on their devices with Snapdragon processors and the operating system from Microsoft, partly in the cheaper market segment. Along with this, growing and stimulating the development of compatible applications. Only then can all the benefits of an energy-efficient revolution manifest themselves. In the current form of the model on the technology “Windows on ARM” to compare with conventional devices is difficult. That is why we did not endow the IdeaPad Miix 630 with any final grade and did not include this model in the 2-in-1 device rating.