Toshiba's 12-inch, 1.2-Pound dynaPad Tablet is Built for Doodling

LAS VEGAS — Watch out iPad Pro and Surface Pro 4, Toshiba has entered the giant tablet wars with the dynaPad, a 12-inch Windows 10 tablet. It weighs only 1.27 pounds and comes with a Wacom-based stylus. Revealed today at CES 2016, and available for pre-order now (coming to Microsoft Stores in late January), the DynaPad starts at $570. For an additional $99, you get more laptop-like functionality.

We got to play with the dynaPad at Microsof'ts CES device showcase and came away impressed with its svelte design and pressure-sensitive stylus. When we lifted up the tablet, it felt even lighter in the hand than it's already-low 1.27-pound weight would suggest, perhaps because the weight is distritubed so evenly. 

First spotted at IFA 2015, the dynaPad includes the TruPen, which Toshiba says has "professional-grade digital inking technologies" courtesy of Wacom. The metal stylus is in a matching champagne-gold, with fine-tip that has 2,048 levels of pressure sensitivity, which is twice as many as you get with Microsoft's latest Surface Pen. During our hands on, we wrote on the display and noted that lines appeared thicker when we pressed harder and thinner when we used a lighter touch. The pen felt very natural and responsive. It also attaches to a slot on the side of the tablet for easy carrying.

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The dynaPad sports a 12-inch, 1920 x 1280-pixel display that Toshiba engineered for handwriting by bonding two sheets of glass together with a metal mesh sensor. It also features Gorilla Glass 3 with a fingerprint resistant coating. This combination should result in a 2-million-pixel touch-screen thats ideal for artists, hand-writers and laid back doodlers.

Toshiba has powered the dynaPad with an Intel Atom x5 Z8300 processor with up to 4GB of RAM and up to 64GB of flash storage, to make the most out of Windows 10. The tablet features two micro USB 2.0 ports, a microSD card reader that supports cards up to 128GB and a micro HDMI port. In terms of audio and video, this tablet has a 2MP front camera, dual-array mics and an 8MP rear shooter. 

The optional keyboard offers 1.5 millimeters of travel, an amount of depth we hope to find in ultraportable laptop keys. When we tried typing on the keys, they felt deep and snappy. The keyboard attaches with magnets to the clamshell-laptop position, but unlike the Surface Pro 4, you can't adjust the angle of the docked tablet and it's not really meant for lap use. However, you can place the tablet on the keyboard face down and it sticks together as one piece to carry or stick in your bag.

Weighing only 1.28 pounds and measuring 0.27 inches thick, the champagne-gold dynaPad is thinner and lighter than the Surface Pro 4 (1.69 — 1.73 pounds, 0.33 inches) and lighter and just as thin as the iPad Pro (1.59 pounds, 0.27 inches). The dynaPad is also the lightest 12-inch Windows tablet. With its affordable price, light weight and comfortable stylus, Toshiba's new tablet looks like it could be a real winner.

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