Lenovo ThinkPad X40 Notebook Reviews


Within the notebook downsizing race, IBM finally catches to the competition using the new ThinkPad X40. The skinny wedge-formed unit weighs in at just 3.2 pounds and measures 1.3 inches tall in the hinges. Fujitsu and Compaq overcome that territory a lengthy time ago with sub-3-pound versions from the LifeBook and Evo, correspondingly. However this is IBM's thinnest and lightest notebook yet, that ought to excite ThinkPad fans. And also the X40 likes one huge trump card total other ultraportables: It features a great keyboard.

Lenovo ThinkPad X40 

The $2299 X40 remains in keeping with the ThinkPad feel and look with similar trademark black situation, red eraserhead, blue Enter key, and tidy group of audio buttons which help cutting corners. Although the screen is just 12.1 inches, it's vibrant and crisp. However the real star from the show may be the keyboard. It's by necessity smaller sized than the usual standard notebook's keyboard, yet still it feels full-size. The X40's secret's an almost full key stroke and pitch: 2.5mm and 18.5mm, correspondingly, in comparison with 3mm and 19mm for a lot of other models, based on IBM. This is an amazing task thinking about that on other ultraportables we struggle together with typing that feels cramped, shallow, or both.

The X40 ought to be simple to upgrade, another minor miracle within the ultraportable world. It arrives with 256MB of RAM built-in, while offering one accessible slot, situated inside a bottom compartment. The 40GB hard disk, guaranteed just by one bottom screw, is particularly simple to achieve, as possible pull it from the front from the situation by its cover. The X40 is 802.11b Wi-Fi ready (with Bluetooth also a choice) and includes an Sdcard slot, a little but potentially handy extra feature.

Size comes with its restrictions, though. Connections are sparser than you are on the ThinkPad X31, which provides coverage for all of the bases and more having a FireWire port, CompactFlash slot, along with other features. The X40 is restricted towards the basics: a few USB 2. ports, a monitor connection, fundamental audio, and network and modem jacks. Like its predecessor, the three.6-pound X31 (still being offered), the X40 is really a one-spindle notebook--it's no built-in optical drive--also it provides just one pointing device, IBM's TrackPoint eraserhead, that will dissatisfy touch pad fans.

To include an optical drive towards the X40, you are able to go 1 of 2 ways. IBM sells USB 2. models (up to and including $499 multiformat DVD burner), however they need a second source of energy to lose dvds. (Plugging one in to the X40's proprietary optical-drive power outlet around the left side from the situation supports only read mode.) Or choose the $199 X4 UltraBase Pier, a light-weight 1.3-pound slice that snaps onto the foot of the notebook and it has a modular bay for any combination drive. The pier also works as a simple port replicator and adds a couple of connections the notebook does not have, together with a parallel port along with a third USB 2. port. However, you still do not get TV-out or FireWire.

The X40's speed and battery existence are pretty good, but they are restricted to the X40's size. The quickest processor readily available for this notebook may be the ultra-low-current 1.2-GHz/600-MHz Pentium M. With this CPU, the X40 gained a WorldBench 5 score of 55, 6 % greater compared to average of ultraportables we have examined.

In battery tests, our unit's standard four-cell battery survived just 2.6 hrs, far in the five to seven hrs some standard notebook computers now deliver. You are able to strengthen the X40's battery existence often, but be ready to covering out some dollars. The easiest upgrade is IBM's $199 eight-cell substitute battery, which bending battery existence within our tests. Standard in certain X40 designs, it weighs in at in regards to a half-pound greater than the 6.6-ounce four-cell battery and protrudes one inch within the back. Plus there is the Extended Existence battery, single-pound $199 slice that utilizes the pier link with offer an additional 3.5 hrs for as many as 10 hrs, based on IBM. (We didn't test drive it.) Another possible configuration is mixing an eight-cell battery around the notebook having a $189 UltraBay Slim lithium polymer battery placed in to the dock's modular bay, for approximately 7.5 hrs.

If you are rough in your laptop, the X40's Active Protection System for notebook computers may buy some reassurance. Created by IBM this past year, it provides a group of built-moving sensors that identify movement, for example inside a disappear a desk, and spin lower the hard disk which means you don't lose data. It's tough to check this type of feature, however the utility didn't decelerate our work also it could prove useful, so what is the injury? Another offbeat feature may be the ThinkLight, available on most ThinkPads. An Brought baked into the lid and controlled with a combination key stroke, the ThinkLight stands out a pale light around the keyboard, assisting you enter in the dark.

The ThinkPad X40 might not be an ideal ultraportable, however it comes with a lock around the perfect ultraportable keyboard. The laptop keyboard quality might be enough that will help you forget you are spending $2299 around the X40 and it is docking station, without getting some business programs, a touch pad, lengthy battery existence, or all of the latest connections.