Having used a T60 Flexview for few weeks I'd like to share my experiences with you.
Solid build quality, the T60 15 inch SXGA+ Flexview x1300 model seems to be indestructible. It feels more indestructible than the T40 Flexview (see my T42 very short review
), but does not have the great finish or view of the T4x. The battery is really solid integrated, in contrast to the x60 large battery models I used before. It does not come near the build quality of the x301 (see my x301 review
) which really is superb. Overall I'd give it a 9 out of 10 in build quality, and this only as the x301 needs to have a superior rating here. This notebook is heavy - even if I made it around 0,3 kg lighter by removing the installed sata hdd. Its chicony keyboard is very good and I can place my hands completely on the palm rest which is nice for me. Unlike the x6 or x300 series where the palms lay down between notebook and table.
Really good display, it uses IPS with said 500:1 contrast and is mostly viewable from all sides. You can only compare it to external display panels. Its contrast and viewing angles are of course not as good compared to my eizo PVA panel of 1500:1 contrast, but it is good. IPS is known for having great viewing angles, sucks on your battery and has great colors where PVA panels are known for their great contrast. Todays TN panels that are build in any actual thinkpad with exception of the tablets (these use IPS) do not have any advantages other then that they are cheap and use less battery life, please correct me if I am wrong here. This notebook is great for watching videos. However this display really needs lots of power and you tend to dim it because of that when on the road. When using the office suite, you need to distinguish the text from the background (so you need contrast). When dimming the display the contrast decreases remarcably. Only if it is that dark you want to turn on thinklight, the lowest backlight option is right. I much prefer the 15 inch 4:3 display over a 14 inch 4:3 display for work.
NOISE & TEMPERATURE
There was a high pitch noise coming from the cpu which is called cpu whining but you can turn it off by using additional software like rmclock. I put the sata hdd out and left the first hdd bay empty. I put my somewhat melted pata ssd
into a pata hdd ultrabay connector which works great
, I'd be happy to turn the ultrabay hdd green light indicator off as it turns on and off all the time. I turned the fan completely off with the software tpfancontrol until 85 celsius. I can work for half an hour and the fan does not turn on even when docked in. I installed the newest bios upgrade - said to be not so good for a silent computer: The lowest fan level 1 has around 3000 RPM, that is loud. The GPU is making the fan turn on
, the CPU is always 10 celsius colder. I am thinking about replacing my t60 ati motherboard with a 300€ t60 intel gpu motherboard that is wwan capable
. That would help with both temperature and battery life.
SPEED & BATTERY LIFE
System is running vista (with aero disabled) fine with its 2 GB RAM, I do not see any speed improvements to my some years old 1 GB RAM desktop system. Battery life is short with around 2.5 hours with the 6 cell battery on vista with energy saving modus, wlan enabled and near full brightness display. The display here is by far an extreme battery sucker and if you could live with inferior contrast by dimming its display back as far as it goes, you get an additional hour of battery life. The T6 series uses the same batteries and docking solutions like the actual T400 / T500 / W500 series. Batteries tend to loose the capable power within time even if they are not used and brand new. As much as i know lenovo stopped producing any more batteries for the T4 series. So this alone could be a great argument for mobile users whether to buy a T4 or T6 model.
ADVANCED MINI DOCK
I use this thinkpad on an advanced mini dock which provides me with dvi and all my home environment - keyboard, mouse, printer, lan - is connected to the docking. The dock is much easier to use than the dockings for the T4 series. However keyboard and mouse are not responsible when plugged into the dock
, I need to put them into the thinkpads usb ports all the time I plug in my notebook. That's really a downside and it seems there are no efforts from lenovo to resolve this bug. When working home, I do not need wireless lan which is usually activated when on the road. I'd really like to see an indicator that wlan is activated. Having the closed thinkpad docked in, I neither see the wlan led indicator nor can easily take a look on the wireless switcher on front of the thinkpad. I'd also like to have sound always activated when the system is docked but disabled when on the road
. There is no solution for this. The sound off button from the keyboard is controlling the bios directly: If you turn off the sound and dock the thinkpad in, there is no other solution than to open the display of the docked thinkpad and press the sound button of the keyboard to activate the sound. The T61 series does not control the sound any more over bios.
This is a heavy notebook. It has a great display and great keyboard. And that counts if you want to work. I really thought about how to make this notebook lighter, but that is not possible as the weight is really thought of: The display and computer are safe with the good build case that has to have some weight. To make it lighter, I put out the first hdd and its heavy hdd enclose and do not use a notebook case at the moment which safes weight. The system itself does feel solid enough. Anyway, when on the road, if you arrive and put out your t60 to work with, you'll instantly know that the weight is worth the great display.