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Whitieiii
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Cheap ThinkPad suggestions

#1 Post by Whitieiii » Sat Feb 29, 2020 8:11 am

Looking for an absolute cheap ThinkPad preferably under $100 usd that will do 1080p video streaming, support 64bit os and has 14 inch (or 15 inch display without numb pad) I'm trying to replace a c2d machine from 06/07 that is only 32 bit and doesn't even do 720p video streaming well with something better for as cheap as possible... Any suggestions?
My Collection:
A30 Pentium 3 512MB ram 60GB HDD Win 98SE
HP 8460p 2nd gen i7 8GB ram 500GB HDD Radeon 6470m Win 7
T440p 4th gen i7 12GB ram GT 730m 1TB SSD Win 10
X1 Extreme Gen 2 16GB ram 1650 M-Q 1TB SSD Win 10
x260 6th gen i-series
Mum's T440s 4th gen i5 8GB ram 300GB SSD Win 10

kfzhu1229
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Re: Cheap ThinkPad suggestions

#2 Post by kfzhu1229 » Sat Feb 29, 2020 1:11 pm

Seeing that you have a Core duo machine, you probably wanna upgrade to something after the core 2 duo era.
Something like T510, T520 and T530 (T410, 420, 430, X210, X220, X230 for smaller form factors) would be your obvious choice then.
The T5xx series obviously supports far better screens but may be a little chunky for many road warriors.
Alternatively if you want get a little more out of your buck for any business machines, the Dell Latitude and HP Elitebooks are generally cheaper than the ThinkPads (they don't hold onto their value as well).
Dell Lat CP MMX-233 64mb 40gb W2k
600 PII-266 416mb 40gb WXP
T23 PIII 1.13ghz 1gb W7
Lat D830 X9000 8gb 128gb WSXGA+ Ultrasharp fp W10
T530i 15.6" i7 16gb fp W10
UXGA:
A30p PIII 1.2 1gb W7 (IDTech)
T43p 2.26 2gb fp W10 (Sharp)
Lat C840 P4-2.5 2gb 60gb W7 (Ultrasharp)

wujstefan
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Re: Cheap ThinkPad suggestions

#3 Post by wujstefan » Mon Mar 02, 2020 5:00 pm

Well I can't tell what's going on the American market, but getting a T430 around $100 is a no-problemo task in Europe. If you hunt well, T530 may also smile at you. This is, of course, if you're not looking for a like-new or top-end unit :D

Elitebooks/Dells for some reason are more expensive here than their black counterparts. Maybe due to high popularity?
Too many thinkpads not enough time!
(stable under reduction)

kfzhu1229
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Re: Cheap ThinkPad suggestions

#4 Post by kfzhu1229 » Mon Mar 02, 2020 5:47 pm

Hmm locally in Toronto, Canada (local classifieds is much better than eBay for these things in Canada), I see Latitude E6430 (which is the direct competitor of ThinkPad T430, same 14" Ivy bridge stuff) generally going for like $20-30 cheaper. Maybe because over here businesses bought more of these HP and Latitude counterparts because the businesses got better offers for them when they were new.
It is more dramatic for the likes of a ThinkPad T61. Not even talking about 4:3 T61's (those are extremely inflated in price), a widescreen one without HDD, caddy, battery and charger (C$65) costs about twice as much as what I paid for for my Latitude D830 (C$35, and you get a nice IPS-like WSXGA+ display too over the standard WXGA)
Dell Lat CP MMX-233 64mb 40gb W2k
600 PII-266 416mb 40gb WXP
T23 PIII 1.13ghz 1gb W7
Lat D830 X9000 8gb 128gb WSXGA+ Ultrasharp fp W10
T530i 15.6" i7 16gb fp W10
UXGA:
A30p PIII 1.2 1gb W7 (IDTech)
T43p 2.26 2gb fp W10 (Sharp)
Lat C840 P4-2.5 2gb 60gb W7 (Ultrasharp)

Klivlend
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Re: Cheap ThinkPad suggestions

#5 Post by Klivlend » Mon Apr 20, 2020 1:44 am

By the way, I came across Latitude - there is a lot of marriage there, so I'm not sure that overpaying for Thinkpad would be such a stupid solution.

SynbiosVyse
Posts: 31
Joined: Sun Mar 19, 2017 1:06 pm
Location: Boston, MA

Re: Cheap ThinkPad suggestions

#6 Post by SynbiosVyse » Thu Apr 23, 2020 8:52 pm

T420 is always the answer, or something around that generation.

cadillacmike68
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Re: Cheap ThinkPad suggestions

#7 Post by cadillacmike68 » Wed Jun 03, 2020 7:53 pm

I can never find systems priced like the ones above. Admittedly I'm usually looking for a fully equipped system with a higher powered CPU and maxed out RAM.

Just a note, My T61s with C2D (2.4 or 2.5GHz) have no trouble with running 1080 on WUXGA or WSXGA+ external monitors. These are 8GB maxed out RAM systems. A T500 would do the same for less, the RAM being less expensive.
600
760LD FUBARd
T21 2647 T22 2647 4@ 900MHz, 1@ 1GHz SXGA+; T23 2647 2@ 1.13GHz, 1@ 1.2GHz SXGA+
T30 2366-88U 2GHz; 2366-83U 1.8G; 5@ 2366-LU0/66U; 2367-KU6 FUBARd
T41 T42 T43
T61 8897 2.4GHz SXGA+; 8898 2.4Ghz; 6463 2@ WSXGA+; 7658 2.5GHz; T61p; 6 more T61s
T500 2
T530 W530

kfzhu1229
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Re: Cheap ThinkPad suggestions

#8 Post by kfzhu1229 » Wed Jun 03, 2020 9:00 pm

cadillacmike68 wrote:
Wed Jun 03, 2020 7:53 pm
Just a note, My T61s with C2D (2.4 or 2.5GHz) have no trouble with running 1080 on WUXGA or WSXGA+ external monitors. These are 8GB maxed out RAM systems. A T500 would do the same for less, the RAM being less expensive.
It depends on what 1080p stuff we are talking about here and with what graphics. the iGPU has no problem with 1080p YouTube that C2D with that C2D being powerful enough to do software rendering on its own and without going through a PCIe slot, but the rendering quality is horrible on my experience with the X3100 iGPU in Windows 10.
However, if you have a discrete graphics card capable of decoding h264 codec, and that it only have 128MB of VRAM (like the NVS 135M on my D830 and the NVS 140M on the T61, note that Dell's version of NVS 140M has 256MB of VRAM instead), many times under modern environments you run out of VRAM and the 667Mhz DDR2 dual channel system RAM is just too slow to be used so you get all sorts of choppiness as the the contents in the VRAM keeps getting dumped onto your system RAM. My D830 with NVS 135M and 128MB of VRAM in Windows 10 with 1080p YouTube on Chrome and H264ify gives 1-2MB of free VRAM in WSXGA+ and chopps all over the place.
This is with 8GB of RAM, X9000 and SSD.
An identically specced Precision M4300 with 256MB Quadro FX 360M has no such issues under WSXGA+ resolutions.
Windows Store Apps are even more VRAM demanding. Running the Facebook Messenger app will basically give my only 10-20MB of free VRAM.
Dell Lat CP MMX-233 64mb 40gb W2k
600 PII-266 416mb 40gb WXP
T23 PIII 1.13ghz 1gb W7
Lat D830 X9000 8gb 128gb WSXGA+ Ultrasharp fp W10
T530i 15.6" i7 16gb fp W10
UXGA:
A30p PIII 1.2 1gb W7 (IDTech)
T43p 2.26 2gb fp W10 (Sharp)
Lat C840 P4-2.5 2gb 60gb W7 (Ultrasharp)

cadillacmike68
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Location: Florida

Re: Cheap ThinkPad suggestions

#9 Post by cadillacmike68 » Wed Jun 03, 2020 10:42 pm

kfzhu1229 wrote:
Wed Jun 03, 2020 9:00 pm
cadillacmike68 wrote:
Wed Jun 03, 2020 7:53 pm
Just a note, My T61s with C2D (2.4 or 2.5GHz) have no trouble with running 1080 on WUXGA or WSXGA+ external monitors. These are 8GB maxed out RAM systems. A T500 would do the same for less, the RAM being less expensive.


It depends on what 1080p stuff we are talking about here and with what graphics. the iGPU has no problem with 1080p YouTube that C2D with that C2D being powerful enough to do software rendering on its own and without going through a PCIe slot, but the rendering quality is horrible on my experience with the X3100 iGPU in Windows 10.
However, if you have a discrete graphics card capable of decoding h264 codec, and that it only have 128MB of VRAM (like the NVS 135M on my D830 and the NVS 140M on the T61, note that Dell's version of NVS 140M has 256MB of VRAM instead), many times under modern environments you run out of VRAM and the 667Mhz DDR2 dual channel system RAM is just too slow to be used so you get all sorts of choppiness as the the contents in the VRAM keeps getting dumped onto your system RAM. My D830 with NVS 135M and 128MB of VRAM in Windows 10 with 1080p YouTube on Chrome and H264ify gives 1-2MB of free VRAM in WSXGA+ and chopps all over the place.
This is with 8GB of RAM, X9000 and SSD.
An identically specced Precision M4300 with 256MB Quadro FX 360M has no such issues under WSXGA+ resolutions.
Windows Store Apps are even more VRAM demanding. Running the Facebook Messenger app will basically give my only 10-20MB of free VRAM.


We are definitely doing different things with differently configured systems. You're running W10 , I'm on W7. I have both intel graphics and both types of nvidia GPUs (reg T61 NVS140M and T61p Quadro FX). They are all at 8GB and use 2.4 or 2.5GHz CPUs. 7200RPM HDDs that I keep optimized. Perhaps I'm not taxing the system as much as you are. I have zero interest in the windows store or anything in it and do not do facebarf at all. I mainly playback saved MP4s off the HDD or DVDs off the drive in the ultrabays. I no longer have netflix so can't test that and I have not bothered to watch anything on amazon prime because my 40"+ TVs are in the adjoining rooms.

I used to play DVDs on My T22s and T30s with no real issues that I can remember, but those were on the XGA or SXGA+ screens. The old T30 did struggle with large MP4 files, that I can remember, night and day difference with the T61s.
600
760LD FUBARd
T21 2647 T22 2647 4@ 900MHz, 1@ 1GHz SXGA+; T23 2647 2@ 1.13GHz, 1@ 1.2GHz SXGA+
T30 2366-88U 2GHz; 2366-83U 1.8G; 5@ 2366-LU0/66U; 2367-KU6 FUBARd
T41 T42 T43
T61 8897 2.4GHz SXGA+; 8898 2.4Ghz; 6463 2@ WSXGA+; 7658 2.5GHz; T61p; 6 more T61s
T500 2
T530 W530

kfzhu1229
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Re: Cheap ThinkPad suggestions

#10 Post by kfzhu1229 » Thu Jun 04, 2020 12:01 am

cadillacmike68 wrote:
Wed Jun 03, 2020 10:42 pm
I used to play DVDs on My T22s and T30s with no real issues that I can remember, but those were on the XGA or SXGA+ screens. The old T30 did struggle with large MP4 files, that I can remember, night and day difference with the T61s.
Oh local 1080p video with the likes of the NVS 135M and 140M with 128MB Vram works perfectly fine if you use the likes of vlc player, and it also runs much cooler playing those videos since the CPU is almost idle the entire time, and hardware decoding doesn't really use extensively of GPU compute power.
DVD playbacks are no problem with the T2x devices provided you don't have a Celeron inside one of them and you use software from back in the day like WinDVD.
Are you able to get 720p h264 videos to play smoothly on a T30? I remembered having the A31p and in 720p h264 it did very much the same as my A30p because their CPU multimedia powers are roughly the same, and that they aren't fast enough to do 720p h264 to have the video and audio perfectly in sync without chopping. I have to convert all of them to mpeg4 codec to play at 720p.
However though, with the GeForce4 Go graphics on the Latitude C840, it played 720p h264 video in UXGA LCD resolution perfectly fine even with a low end 1.7Ghz Pentium 4! This does leave me wonder whether it is that the GeForce4 Go graphics doing much more computation than the Radeon 7500 or the FireGL card does. That GeForce4 Go graphics is up to 40% faster so that can make sense (all while providing a world better battery life, and that's why the C840 is the PC Mag editor's choice over the A31p). Swapping the video card with an older GeForce2 Go (C840 graphics is modular) means even with a 2.5Ghz CPU it won't do 720p h264 at all.
This is going out of topic but thought it would be nice for there to be some hard conclusions of playing videos on these old things.
Dell Lat CP MMX-233 64mb 40gb W2k
600 PII-266 416mb 40gb WXP
T23 PIII 1.13ghz 1gb W7
Lat D830 X9000 8gb 128gb WSXGA+ Ultrasharp fp W10
T530i 15.6" i7 16gb fp W10
UXGA:
A30p PIII 1.2 1gb W7 (IDTech)
T43p 2.26 2gb fp W10 (Sharp)
Lat C840 P4-2.5 2gb 60gb W7 (Ultrasharp)

ThinkPadMiami
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Posts: 53
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Location: Miami, FL

Re: Cheap ThinkPad suggestions

#11 Post by ThinkPadMiami » Thu Jun 04, 2020 3:56 pm

I have bought W510s for $100+. That is a really hard deal to beat IMO.
W520 (2960XM, 1000M); W520 (2920XM, 2000M); W520 (2860QM, 2000M); W520 (2720QM, 1000M), W510 (720QM), W510 (720QM), W510 (920XM), W500 (T9600)

kfzhu1229
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Re: Cheap ThinkPad suggestions

#12 Post by kfzhu1229 » Fri Jun 05, 2020 4:26 pm

Well actually here I have something to think about:
My friend's friend's friend is a female in her mid 20s and she never had a laptop ever (yes you heard that right), so I was assigned with a task to find her a suitable laptop under C$200 (US$150).
Here I have a ThinkPad T520 as a spare lying around idle. It could be a great solution to this since I am more than happy to get rid of it as I have an almost identical T530. However, this T520 (and my T530) are some of the highest specced ones with a core i7-2860QM, 8GB RAM, NVS 4200M, FHD AUO display, and 256GB Samsung branded SATA SSD.
Having a quick look online it seems like this kind of specced T520's sell for around C$300-400 which is way above the reach of our "customer" and selling it at C$200 may mean a huge loss to me. Even then she needs to deal with the battery situation as I only have one 6 cell battery between my T520 and T530.
Is there any way that I can bring the price down to around C$200? Perhaps downgrading the CPU? Is downgrading to an i3-2328M a good idea and then sell the i7-2860QM here? I have two of those i3-2328M CPUs lying around one from my T530 and the other from a Sony Vaio
I was originally planning to get a Latitude E6420, E6430, E6520 or E6530 but it seems like even the prices for those things are affected by this pandemic
None of the ThinkPads or Elitebooks from this generation that I can get locally or on eBay even come close to the C$200 mark after I put at least 6GB of RAM and a SSD
Dell Lat CP MMX-233 64mb 40gb W2k
600 PII-266 416mb 40gb WXP
T23 PIII 1.13ghz 1gb W7
Lat D830 X9000 8gb 128gb WSXGA+ Ultrasharp fp W10
T530i 15.6" i7 16gb fp W10
UXGA:
A30p PIII 1.2 1gb W7 (IDTech)
T43p 2.26 2gb fp W10 (Sharp)
Lat C840 P4-2.5 2gb 60gb W7 (Ultrasharp)

cadillacmike68
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Location: Florida

Re: Cheap ThinkPad suggestions

#13 Post by cadillacmike68 » Fri Jun 05, 2020 6:23 pm

You could change the CPU back and put a platter HDD in place of the SSD.

It's not that you would "lose" $200, but rather would "receive" $200 less than you might otherwise. Of course if you let that T520 sit for too long it will lose its value all by itself.
600
760LD FUBARd
T21 2647 T22 2647 4@ 900MHz, 1@ 1GHz SXGA+; T23 2647 2@ 1.13GHz, 1@ 1.2GHz SXGA+
T30 2366-88U 2GHz; 2366-83U 1.8G; 5@ 2366-LU0/66U; 2367-KU6 FUBARd
T41 T42 T43
T61 8897 2.4GHz SXGA+; 8898 2.4Ghz; 6463 2@ WSXGA+; 7658 2.5GHz; T61p; 6 more T61s
T500 2
T530 W530

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