Lenovo Duet 3 Assessment: Extra Than I Anticipated From a Finances Laptop computer


I like low-cost laptops. Extra precisely, I like good low-cost laptops… however these might be arduous to seek out. For each hundred bucks that will get trimmed off a laptop computer’s worth, its options, design and efficiency all sometimes take successful. However once I discover one which rises above Black Friday doorbuster stage, it is one thing to cheer about. 

Should you want a funds laptop computer that appears respectable, has a satisfactory keyboard, is sufficiently small to go anyplace and is versatile sufficient to double as a video-streaming pill, then take a look at the Lenovo Duet Chromebook. It isn’t particularly quick, and the touchpad is not nice, but it surely’s nonetheless the most effective computer systems you should purchase for underneath $400. Simply observe that it makes a greater secondary or journey laptop computer than a major machine — which is one thing I might say about nearly any 11-inch laptop computer. 


  • Features a keyboard cowl
  • Works as a laptop computer or pill
  • Glorious total worth

Do not Like

  • Touchpad is not nice
  • Slower efficiency
  • No headphone jack

At the moment promoting for $379, that is an 11-inch ChromeOS pill with a keyboard cowl and kickstand. Which means it may possibly work as a standalone touchscreen pill, or as a clamshell-like pocket book. In that manner, it is sort of like a less expensive Microsoft Floor 2-in-1. The model examined right here has 64GB of eMMC storage, however the mannequin in shops proper now has 128GB, which is a plus. 

Microsoft already makes a funds Floor, the most-recent model of which is known as the Floor Go 3. It is $400 and runs Home windows as a substitute of ChromeOS, and has an Intel processor as a substitute of the Snapdragon 7c right here. However the greatest sensible distinction to me is that the Lenovo Duet contains its fairly darn good keyboard cowl within the field, whereas Microsoft forces you to purchase its keyboard cowl for an additional $100 to $129, relying on the colour. When buying at this finish of the funds pool, a 25% premium to get the keyboard (which is a must have) makes a giant distinction.

Dan Ackerman/CNET

As a Chromebook, the Duet is much less succesful than a Home windows machine in some respects, however as fashionable Chromebooks can run nearly any Android app, the use circumstances the place this is able to make an actual distinction to you proceed to slim. And head-to-head, a sub-$500 laptop working ChromeOS is often going to really feel speedier and extra responsive than a equally priced Home windows PC, due to the lighter OS. 

Learn extra: Tips on how to Purchase a Finances Laptop computer in 2022

Keyboard and kickstand 

I’ve at all times stated the keyboard cowl design and construct high quality are one of the best issues in regards to the Floor line, and that is true for the Lenovo Duet as effectively. The Lenovo keyboard is equally stable, not flimsy like another clip-on keyboards, and its smallish keys have wonderful depth and a satisfying clacky really feel. The tiny touchpad, in distinction, is the only most annoying factor about this technique — it is usable, however does not really feel as correct or responsive as I might like. 

Here is a fast ChromeOS trackpad tip. If you wish to get a extra acquainted Home windows-like really feel, soar into the system settings, positioned at Settings > System > Touchpad, and ensure tap-to-click and faucet dragging are each enabled. 

For infrequent long-form typing, I might get by with this keyboard cowl. However for critical modifying, which requires navigating throughout a doc with the touchpad, it wasn’t enjoyable. However truthfully that is asking rather a lot from such a cheap machine. 

In contrast to the Floor line, which has a wonderful built-in kickstand, the kickstand here’s a separate again cowl piece that magnetically snaps onto the again of the system, and matches the aesthetic of the keyboard cowl. You possibly can take it off for a extremely stripped-down slate look, however I do not know why you’d trouble. 

Lenovo Duet with kickstand

Dan Ackerman/CNET

A good show 

The show is one other sturdy level, with a 2,000×1,200 display screen decision and an 11-inch (actually 10.9-inch) display screen. Lenovo additionally makes a bigger 13-inch Duet with an excellent higher OLED show that is usually on sale for underneath $500, and that is price a glance in the event you want one thing bigger. The IPS touchscreen right here was greater than acceptable for video streaming and productiveness, with a max brightness of 400 nits. 

Since it is so small and lightweight, lower than 1.2 kilos with simply the display screen (or simply over 2 kilos with the keyboard and again cowl), that is nice for holding one-handed in panorama mode for prolonged studying classes. 

Lenovo Duet as ebook reader

Dan Ackerman/CNET

Efficiency and battery life

As a performer… effectively, this is not on the speedy facet, even amongst current Chromebooks. I positively felt it when hitting a dozen or extra open tabs within the Chrome browser. In benchmark exams, it was center of the pack. 

Nonetheless, working Android apps must be fantastic, because the Qualcomm Snapdragon CPU right here is much like what you may discover in some telephones. From the Google Play retailer, I attempted a few current Android video games with respectable graphics, together with Diablo Immortal. The free-to-play motion RPG performed fantastic, however was restricted to decrease in-game graphics settings, together with a 30fps versus 60fps body fee. 

Lenovo Duet  playing a game

Dan Ackerman/CNET

I additionally tried cloud gaming through Xbox Cloud Gaming. For that, I performed through the Chrome browser. When you’ve got a stable web connection, it may be a really satisfying various to downloaded video games, and cloud gaming is barely going to develop into increasingly mainstream. On this specific case, I had hassle getting my Bluetooth controller acknowledged by the Xbox cloud gaming app, so I hardwired my controller through USB-C. 

You continue to run into occasional compatibility points with Chromebooks. Whereas most apps and cloud providers right here labored as anticipated, I could not get Adobe’s beta cloud model of Photoshop to run, as a substitute getting an incompatible browser message.

And whereas I just like the Duet total, there are a number of different issues that may be a dealbreaker for you. The keyboard cowl is included, however a stylus shouldn’t be. Any USI pen will do, and there is a rubber holder that snaps into the again cowl in the event you determine to get the official Lenovo model, which is $35.  

You’ve got solely acquired two USB-C ports for charging, which might be limiting (but it surely’s additionally the identical as a MacBook Air). And probably most vital, there is no headphone/audio jack. 

If these flaws aren’t deadly, the Lenovo Duet 3 makes an amazing second or journey laptop computer. I might be hard-pressed to make use of it as an all-day, on daily basis machine – but when I solely wished to spend $400 on a laptop computer, I might even be hard-pressed to think about an total higher choice.

Geekbench 5 (multicore)

Asus Chromebook Removable CM3


Longer bars point out higher efficiency

3DMark Slingshot Open GL

Lenovo Ideapad Chromebook Duet 3

Asus Chromebook Removable CM3


Longer bars point out higher efficiency

Google Octane 2

Asus Chromebook Removable CM3


Longer bars point out higher efficiency

JetStream 2

Asus Chromebook Removable CM3


Longer bars point out higher efficiency

System specs

Lenovo Chromebook Duet 3 ChromeOS; 2.55GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon 7c Gen 2; 4GB RAM; 64GB eMMC SSD
Lenovo Chromebook Flex 5 ChromeOS; 3GHz Intel Core i3-1115G4; 8GB RAM;128GB PCIe SSD
HP Chromebook x2 11 ChromeOS; 2.4GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon 7c; 8GB RAM; 64GB eMMC
Asus Chromebook Removable CM3 ChromeOS; 2GHz MediaTek 8183; 4GB RAM; 128GB eMMC SSD
Acer Chromebook 714 ChromeOS; 2.5GHz Intel Core i5-1235U; 8GB RAM; 256GB SSD

The evaluation course of for laptops, desktops, tablets and different computer-like gadgets consists of two components: efficiency testing underneath managed situations within the CNET Labs and intensive hands-on use by our skilled reviewers. This contains evaluating a tool’s aesthetics, ergonomics and options. A remaining evaluation verdict is a mix of each these goal and subjective judgments. 

The record of benchmarking software program we use adjustments over time because the gadgets we take a look at evolve. A very powerful core exams we’re presently working on each suitable laptop embody: Primate Labs Geekbench 5, Cinebench R23, PCMark 10 and 3DMark Hearth Strike Extremely. ChromeOS methods run browser-based exams like Jetstream and Google Octane.

A extra detailed description of every benchmark and the way we use it may be present in our How We Take a look at Computer systems web page. 

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