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Lenovo Miix 510

By Joel Santo Domingo December 21, 2016 4:20PM ESTDecember 21, 2016

Editors' Rating: EXCELLENT


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STARTING CONFIGURATION PRICE LOWEST PRICE


$599.99 $599.99

Lenovo $599.99
PROS

Excellent benchmark performance. Includes backlit keyboard cover. Equipped with both USB
3.0 and USB-C ports.

CONS

Active Pen costs extra. Occasional fan noise.

BOTTOM LINE

Lenovo's Miix 510 is an attractive Windows tablet/keyboard combo with top-notch


performance and enough future-proo ng that it can replace your current laptop.

The Lenovo Miix 510 (starts at $599.99; $749.99 as tested) is a


midrange 2-in-1 Windows tablet that gives you both the portability of
a large-screen mobile device and a keyboard cover for use in long
typing sessions. Like the Microsoft Surface Pro 4 $958.99 at Amazon
and the Lenovo IdeaPad Miix 700 $699.99 at Lenovo , it's a true
laptop replacement, giving you the power to do everything you'd
expect from an ultraportable and the convenience of being able to remove the
keyboard when you don't need it. It builds upon the solid framework of its
predecessors, and adds more memory, more storage, and the future-proo ng of
both USB 3.0 (Type-A) and USB-C. The Miix 510 is our latest Editors' Choice for
midrange Windows tablets.

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Design and Features


The Miix 510 $599.99 at Lenovo is one of the many Windows tablets to take its
design cues from the Surface Pro line. Our review unit has a matte silver back
panel and black keyboard cover, though some models come with a black
exterior. It measures 0.6 by 11.8 by 8.1 inches (HWD) alone, and is 0.8 inch thick
with the included keyboard case attached; altogether, the Miix 510 weighs 2.72
pounds. That's a bit larger and heavier than the Miix 700, but comparable to it
and many tablets with keyboard cases, such as the Acer Switch Alpha 12 Best
Price at Amazon .

View All 11 Photos in Gallery

The system is principally a slate tablet with a kickstand so you can prop it up on
a work surface. The kickstand swings smoothly out from the back panel, using a
pair of watch-gear hinges, like those on the agship Lenovo Yoga 910 $1,049.00
at Lenovo . It's functionally the same as the kickstand on the Surface Pro tablets
and competitors, swinging through a 170-degree arc that gives you a wide range
of use whether you're standing, seated, or lying down with the tablet on your
chest.

A keyboard case is included, and as per the norm, it uses a two-stage magnetic
latch and pogo plugs to pass signals to the tablet. It's more secure and
responsive than the Bluetooth keyboards used by many slates, like the Huawei
MateBook $422.90 at Amazon . It also makes the Miix 510 a better deal than the
Surface Pro tablets, which don't sell with keyboard cases. The backlit keyboard
is just as comfortable as any Lenovo Ideapad laptop's, and the integrated
touchpad is responsive and ready to control the cursor anytime you don't want
to use the touch screen.

The 12.2-inch IPS screen is clear and bright, and it has a 1,920-by-1,200
resolution. That's lower than the resolution on the Miix 700 (2,160 by 1,440),
though you probably won't notice the extra pixels on such a compact screen.
Text is sharp enough to be readable in a brightly lit room, and there's plenty of
space for your spreadsheets or website layouts. Touch sensitivity is excellent,
and you can use the optional Active Pen ($39.99) if you need pressure-sensitive
input for drawing or capturing accurate signatures, for example. The Active Pen
comes with a removable plastic nub that connects it to the USB 3.0 port for
storage (and, irritatingly, blocks it from other use), but you can also clip it to your
shirt pocket or use the magnets in the keyboard cover to hold it when you're not
using it. The tablet's included protective cloth pouch has a built-in loop for
holding the Active Pen, so you have multiple places to stow it. The Active Pen
has two side buttons for right-click and erase, but unlike the Surface Pen, it
lacks a shortcut button on the top for opening OneNote or another program.
Sound from the built-in speakers is well de ned and lls a small-to-medium-size
room. It has very little low end, though; as it tends to favor voice over music and
sound effects, it's best suited for video conferencing and spoken-word les like
audio books. Speaking of sound, one of the few nits to pick is the occasional
noise from the Miix 510's cooling fan. It wouldn't be annoying in a noisy caf, but
it's loud enough to be audible in a library or other quiet room.

There is a headset jack on the right side of the Miix 510. On the left, you'll nd
the jack for the AC adapter and two USB ports, one 3.0 and one USB-C. This way,
you're all set for current and future accessories like USB memory sticks, printers,
hard drives, external SSDs, and USB-C docking stations. That's an improvement
over tablets like the Miix 700 and the Surface Pro that lack USB-C. For wireless
connections, there are 802.11ac and Bluetooth 4.0.

The system's 8GB of RAM is more than enough to keep a few dozen browser
tabs open along with your messaging client, word processor, streaming music,
and maybe even an e-sports video stream going all at the same time. And the
256GB SSD is plenty for local storage these days, especially if you store your
personal pictures on cloud-based services like Google Photos or Amazon Prime
Photos. This is double the memory and storage of the Miix 700, and that will
also help the Miix 510 last longer before it seems out of date. The drive has a
few preinstalled programs, but for the most part, it's the standard Windows
10 $119.99 at Microsoft load. Lenovo covers the Miix 510 with a one-year
warranty.

Performance and Conclusions


The Miix 510 comes with an Intel Core i5-6200U processor with
Intel HD Graphics 520. It was among our leaders on the PCMark 8
Work Conventional test (2,820 points), way ahead of tablets like the
Acer Aspire Switch 11 V Best Price at Amazon , the Huawei
MateBook, and the Samsung Galaxy TabPro S Best Price at Amazon . It should
feel fast for several years on day-to-day tasks like editing of ce documents,
video conferencing, and Web browsing. Multimedia test results were also very
good: 3 minutes, 3 seconds on HandBrake, and 5:58 on Photoshop, again ahead
of the Switch 11 V, the MateBook, and the Galaxy TabPro S. But the Surface Pro
4 and the HP Spectre x2 $387.39 at Amazon were better performers on these
tests.

See How We Test Tablets

As expected given the integrated graphics, the Miix 510 had trouble with our 3D
gaming tests, returning less-than-smooth frame rates on our Heaven (17 frames
per second, or fps) and Valley (20fps) tests at 1,366-by-768 resolution with the
graphics quality set to Medium. The top performers (the Switch Alpha 12 and the
Surface Pro 4) were only a little faster on each, so it's not a huge gap. In any
case, you'll be able to play less-taxing games like Minecraft and Diablo III at
moderate quality settings, but you'll probably want to stay away from the latest
AAA FPS titles with all the details cranked up.

Battery life is good: The Miix 510 lasted 7 hours, 49 minutes on our rundown
test. While that's almost enough to qualify as all-day computing (8 hours is our
oor), it is a bit behind other tablets like the Spectre x2 (9:38), the Surface Pro 4
(10:19), and the TabPro S (11:13). Still, the Miix 510 held out longer than the
Switch 11 V and the MateBook, each of which only managed about 6 hours.

The Lenovo Miix 510 offers a good blend of features, performance, and value. Its
fast Intel Core i5 processor makes it a better performer than the Miix 700 across
the board, and it has double the memory and storage. The Miix 700 has a higher-
resolution screen and longer battery life due to its use of a lower-wattage
processor, but otherwise the less-expensive Miix 510 is a better buy.

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