The oddly named Lenovo Mixx 2 8 is a part of that brave new world of inexpensive 8 inch Windows 8.1 tablets that run full Windows on Intel's much faster Atom Bay Trail processor. We recently reviewed the Dell Venue 8 Pro, the first model to hit the shelves with the updated Windows OS and Bay Trail, but Lenovo wasn't far behind. These two are joined by the Toshiba Encore and Acer Iconia W4, and indirectly by the Asus Transformer Book T100 we also reviewed. This is a 0.33", 0.77 lb. tablet that can fit in a large pocket yet it with exe desktop programs like iTunes and Photoshop CS 6. Better yet, it's just $299 for the 32 gig model, though we do suggest the 64 gig model for $30 to $50 more.
So what's inside? A quad core 1.33GHz Intel Atom Z3740 Bay Trail CPU with Turbo Boost to 1.86GHz. It has 2 gigs of DDR3 RAM (not upgradable) and either 32 or 64 gigs of eMMC flash storage. Like the Venue 8 Pro it has a 3.5mm combo audio jack, micro USB 2.0 port (this is a host port that works with USB peripherals but you'll have to buy a micro to full size USB OTG adapter), a micro SDXC card slot but no HDMI. It supports Miracast wireless display and it has dual band WiFi 802.11n as well as Bluetooth 4.0. The Bay Trail is half as fast as the Intel Core i5, but twice as fast as the last generation Intel Atom Clover Trail. It's fine for MS Office (Office 2013 Home and Student Edition is included), iTunes and Photoshop CS6 as long as you don't open several large RAW files at once or expect complex filters to apply in a second.
Like the Dell, the Lenovo has a 1280 x 800 IPS display with a very good 400 nits brightness. The factory auto-brightness is actually too bright, so you might want to turn auto-brightness off to save your retinas and battery life. It's a sharp and colorful touch screen, and I don't think it will send folks running to the more expensive iPad mini with Retina display.
Lenovo offers a flip case and capacitive stylus bundle for $29.99. Nice price but a capacitive stylus isn't nearly as good as a digital pen. Of course, the Dell Venue 8 Pro is available with an optional Synaptics digital pen, but it needs work to be truly usable.
Here's our Lenovo Miix 2 8 video review. Our full written review will follow.