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Reviewing the Lenovo Horizon 27" AIO table PC

, 30 Sep 2013 CPOL
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Experiencing the Lenovo Horizon 27" AIO during the Honey Moon Phase

Introduction

It has been 10 days since I received the AIO. As with any new gadget we get, we all go through a honey moon phase where we can't seem to put it down. This post will elaborate on my experience while on the honey moon phase of this particular device (keep in mind it's difficult to really point out the bad and ugly while one is still in love). I've been tweaking and testing the unit to see how far on both sides of the performance spectrum I can push this AIO. This is the time I learn the insides and out of my gadget, showcase it and watch jaws drop. This AIO has been a hit everywhere I bring it.

Background


The AIO table PC being reviewed here is a PC in a class of its own known as table PC. The pioneers of this new category of PCs is Lenovo. The Lenovo Horizon AIO table PC is quite the eye catcher with its bright HD 27" touch screen. This model features an Intel Ivy Bridge i5 3337U CPU @ 1.80GHz, 8.0 GB of RAM, and Windows 8 64-bit operating system. The graphics are beautifully rendered by NVIDIA GeForce GT620M 2GB and Intel HD 4000 Graphics cards. Along the right side you have your audio jacks, 2 USB 3.0 ports, HDMI port, 8-1 card reader, and charger port. Along the bottom right side of the screen, you'll see touch sensitive volume controls, screen brightness, and screen orientation controls. A wireless keyboard and mouse are provided, but this will use up one of your 2 USB ports to plug the dongle receiver in.

Using the Device

The driving force behind the table PC concept is its 10 point multi-touch input capabilities which allows multiple users to interact with the AIO at one time. This is especially good during multiplayer games such as Air Hockey. For gaming the AIO brings peripherals such as the e-dice, 2 paddles, and 2 suction cup joystick. These peripherals will further improve the gaming experience on the AIO table PC giving users that hands-on arcade style feeling. To further capitalize on these features, Lenovo developed a multi-user interface called Aura. It's very nice and fun to play with while showcasing but I'm not finding any practical use for it. I don't see myself using Aura to look through my pictures and videos as the first go-to program. This is where Lenovo has a lot of room for improvement. They need to find more practical uses to implement into Aura if they want this to become a true hit.

For best table top gaming, I either place it down on a rolling table as pictured above with a perfect waist high level top. Each player can comfortably stand around the AIO. I will also lay it down on my bed for Indian-style sitting or laying while gaming. 

I love the sleekness of this table PC. I sit it on the couch or my lap and use it as an oversized tablet. The included wireless keyboard and mouse are also very thin, light weight, and sleek. With the key board, I can set up the PC on a cart next to my bed and use the keyboard very comfortably while laying down (as shown in the first picture). The mouse is a laser mouse with 1400 dpi precision I believe. This is a very exceptionally good sensitive mouse, very sought after by designers and gamers who need the precision. 

The integrated battery is very useful. I enjoy the mobility this AIO PC offers. The battery will last up to 2 hours of work time but can be tweaked to last close to 3 hours of just normal web browsing. The built in Dolby speakers offer great crisp sound. I watch a lot of online streaming content so good sound is a must. 

Even without a SSD, this AIO boots up pretty fast. I recommend removing McAfee Internet Security software as this will almost half the boot time. For some reason, McAFee was stalling the booting process. The 1TB hard drive offers a lot of storage room and at 5400 rpm it is very fast and silent.

The Broadcom 11b/g/n WiFi card gives great coverage. I noticed an increase in radio signal strength in comparison to my other devices from the same position. It is also picking up more signals from routers in the neighborhood which are further away. 

On the Windows Experience Index, this AIO scored very well. Its base scare was a 5.8. The processor score a 6.9, Memory scored a 7.4, graphics scored 5.8, gaming graphics scored 6.4, and the primary hard disk scored 5.9. Overall, this PC is one of the higher scoring devices I have (not the highest). Of course, tweaking the settings to suit your needs will impact the score in a positive or negative way. The drivers including are out of date and buggy when it comes to graphics. An instant update is recommended from Microsoft's, Lenovo's (maybe), Intel's and NVIDIA's websites. Once you're updated, all is well. 

In the packaging came a carrying bag, or a temporary carrying bag as I would call it. Its made of a soft cloth-like recyclable material that may be ripped upon getting snagged on a jagged edge. The stiching on the handles are not strong enough for every day use. After 3 days I noticed the string coming loose on the handles so I recommend getting yourself a needle and some heavy duty string to re-sow it for added durability (so far so good). Finding an inexpensive carry bag for this big AIO is pretty difficult so I may be using this temporary bag for a while.  

Final Thought

The IdeaCentre Horizon Table PC is great for practical every day use and gaming. Especially good for bringing the family together around the table for a fun game. This may not be your work horse replacement, but that doesn't mean it can't handle it. Microsoft Visual Studio loads up pretty fast and it can handle multiple instances of Studio running simultaneously while having imaging software and many tabs open on your web browser of choice without suffering any performance loss or bottlenecks.

The large 27" HD touch screen is mesmerizing. You will definitely turn heads and invite small talk when you pull this monster of a AIO PC out. I have a lot of devices to which I can compare and relate to while taking this AIO for a spin, but I can definitely say this will be my go-to desktop PC and I will definitely be carrying it around with me for the duration of the honey moon phase.

History

This post is the first of a 2 part series. The 1st part consists of the Honey Moon Phase which can last up to 3 months where a user is struck by cupids arrow. The 2nd part will be written during the Logic Phase where we can really get into the pros and cons after the lust is gone and the toy is no longer shinny and new (when logical thinking and feelings set in).

License

This article, along with any associated source code and files, is licensed under The Code Project Open License (CPOL)

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About the Author

KillBot Project
Software Developer
United States United States
Has currently a solid 15 years of experience developing software. Studied Computer Science at Temple University. His experience started at the high school level creating apps in c++ and JAVA for use in teachings and was also a senior developer in the creation and launching of the schools official website.
 
Angels strongest skill set lies with C, C++, C# and the .Net Framework, JAVA and PHP. He has always believed its best to be proficient in more than one programming language. He looks at the strengths and weaknesses of each language and uses that knowledge to chose an angle of approach when starting on a project.
 
In the last 2 years with the help of his team mates he entered the mobile app development world. Creating apps such as for example QuickTape and QuickLevel, two apps which are basicaly a virtual measuring tape and a virtual construction level, he quickly learned how to use sensors in smartphone app development.
 
He currently works for a large company developing and maintaining SQL databases, and providing IT support to all staff. On his off time he likes to devote time developing software enhancement apps, exploring artificial intelligence techniques and algorithms for use in task automation apps, and small games using the DirectX Direct2D SDK with his team.

Comments and Discussions

 
GeneralMy vote of 5 PinprofessionalRanjan.D27-Sep-13 8:27 

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