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Any good newer thinkpads? Time to replace my T530

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wrybread
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Any good newer thinkpads? Time to replace my T530

#1 Post by wrybread » Thu Dec 05, 2019 7:16 pm

I love my T530, but it's a bit slow for some coding projects I'm working on, and it's getting a bit worn out in general.

I don't imagine anyone has any recommendations for a good replacement, Thinkpad or otherwise? Something with a useable good touchpad, good keyboard, and huge screen?

Or maybe I'll wind up buying another T530 off ebay, but would be nice to try something new.

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Re: Any good newer thinkpads? Time to replace my T530

#2 Post by RealBlackStuff » Fri Dec 06, 2019 1:25 am

Put in a quad-core CPU, 16GB RAM, SSD and a new NMB 7-row keyboard from the xx20 series, and you'd be good for a few more years.
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Re: Any good newer thinkpads? Time to replace my T530

#3 Post by wrybread » Fri Dec 06, 2019 1:38 am

I've got the SSD, but good idea on maxing out the RAM. I've got 8 gigs, guessing will have to buy all 16 gigs to upgrade it. Is there some RAM people have found works well for cheap on these?

Does the CPU upgrade make a big difference? And how hard and expensive is it to do?

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Re: Any good newer thinkpads? Time to replace my T530

#4 Post by jursky » Fri Dec 06, 2019 3:55 am

What CPU you have now in it?
W530 i7-3840QM (K2000M, 32GB RAM, WCG (Wide Color Gamut) FHD LCD (AUO B156HW01 V.4)) and one X230 i7-3520M (with Nitrocaster mod Rev.6 + FHD 13.3" 99% sRGB IGZO IPS panel LC133LF2L01).

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Re: Any good newer thinkpads? Time to replace my T530

#5 Post by wrybread » Fri Dec 06, 2019 4:04 am

Intel Core i5-3320M CPU @ 2.60GHz

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Re: Any good newer thinkpads? Time to replace my T530

#6 Post by wrybread » Fri Dec 06, 2019 10:41 pm

I went and got a shiny "new" T530 from eBay. Amazing the deals that are there, with a little patience can get a basic one for under $100 shipped.

I went with the whiz bang model:

https://www.ebay.com/itm/401963033750

16 gigs of RAM
Dual Graphics NVIDIA NVS 5400M - Intel HD 4000
Samsung 128gb SSD
Backlit keyboard (love those backlit thinkpad kbs)
6 cell battery (I think that's the big one? hope so)
Win7 (whoo hoo! Makes for an awesome dual boot with Mint)

Interestingly the auction says this: "3rd Generation Intel Core i5 - Ivy Bridge 3630QM Processor with Hyper-Threading Technology 2.60Ghz Base & ( up to 3.30GHz MAX Turbo!)" Are they talking about overclocking? If so, thoughts on overclocking it?

And hopefully it's in immaculate condition so I can be the one to scuff it up, ha. The seller's reviews are excellent.

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Re: Any good newer thinkpads? Time to replace my T530

#7 Post by wrybread » Fri Dec 06, 2019 11:17 pm

I'm sort of wishing I got this one:

https://www.ebay.com/itm/Lenovo-ThinkPa ... 0167.m2940

But I guess there's always going to be one slightly better.

I wonder how much difference it's i7 processor makes.

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Re: Any good newer thinkpads? Time to replace my T530

#8 Post by dr_st » Sat Dec 07, 2019 1:39 am

The i5 to i7 is just a small clock boost. Now if you get a T530 with a quad-core CPU (or change the existing CPU for a quad-core), it may make a big difference in certain workflows.
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Re: Any good newer thinkpads? Time to replace my T530

#9 Post by wrybread » Sat Dec 07, 2019 1:52 am

Very interesting. How much does that upgrade cost typically?

Any tips on where to get it?

And how hard is it to install?

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Re: Any good newer thinkpads? Time to replace my T530

#10 Post by RealBlackStuff » Sat Dec 07, 2019 1:56 am

There is no such thing as a "Core i5 - Ivy Bridge 3630QM".
This is hopefully a typo and should have been "Core i7-3630QM".

The first link also has some interesting battery info: it ships with a 6-, 8- and/or 9-cell battery.
Apart from that, the unit is overpriced in my eyes.

To install a new CPU you need the HMM, 2 screwdrivers (PH0 and flat) plus some decent thermal paste like Kryonaut.
15-20 minutes should do it.
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Re: Any good newer thinkpads? Time to replace my T530

#11 Post by wrybread » Sat Dec 07, 2019 2:42 am

Thanks for that.

Hopefully there's not some shinanigans with the specs, if there is I've found Paypal pretty good with refunds when an item "is not as described".

And do you think the $250 one is pricey too?

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Re: Any good newer thinkpads? Time to replace my T530

#12 Post by keithsketchley » Tue Dec 17, 2019 2:42 pm

Certainly could use a good comparison table, which may be somewhere on Lenovo's churned-never-better web site.


Beware that some recent models have fixed RAM such as 8GB, no easy upgrade. Some have half soldered and a module slot, as some older Thnkpads had.
And may have limitations on HDD/SSD upgrade.
Presumably to lower weight and cost.


Does anyone know the difference between no-suffix, p-suffix, and s-suffix on recent models? (Meaning seems to have varied over the years.)

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Re: Any good newer thinkpads? Time to replace my T530

#13 Post by RealBlackStuff » Wed Dec 18, 2019 1:21 am

As an (older) example:
T530 no suffix: Thinkpad standard model
T530i i-suffix: initial (idiot's)/illiterate's) version of that model
T530s s-suffix: slim(mer) version of that model
T530p p-suffix: premium (souped up) version of that model.
W530 no suffix: Workstation version of that model. (Replaced with Pxxx Series)

As a (newer) example:
T490 no suffix: Thinkpad standard model
A495 a-prefix: AMD-CPU version of that model
i-suffix: AFAIK no longer used
T490s s-suffix: slim(mer) version of that model
p-suffix: AFAIK no longer used.
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Re: Any good newer thinkpads? Time to replace my T530

#14 Post by axur-delmeria » Wed Dec 18, 2019 2:14 am

^ The A series have been folded into main Thinkpad lines.

There's no A495-- it's the T495 now. Likewise, A495s --> T495s, and A395 --> X395
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Re: Any good newer thinkpads? Time to replace my T530

#15 Post by RealBlackStuff » Wed Dec 18, 2019 2:27 am

Last I saw they had the A485, so I figured next one up is the A495... ah well :evil:
Jeez, I can't (and also no longer want) to keep up with this awful letter-soup that Lenono is concocting.
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Re: Any good newer thinkpads? Time to replace my T530

#16 Post by axur-delmeria » Wed Dec 18, 2019 3:33 am

Lenovo's introducing a new naming scheme, with the E14 (succeeding the E490) and E15 (following the E590), and the T14 and X13 have already been announced: https://www.notebookcheck.net/Lenovo-Th ... 044.0.html
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Re: Any good newer thinkpads? Time to replace my T530

#17 Post by RealBlackStuff » Wed Dec 18, 2019 4:00 am

Does that mean in nine years we will have T14 Gen 9, or T14 9th Gen, or T14 G9, or T14 Canine?

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Re: Any good newer thinkpads? Time to replace my T530

#18 Post by wrybread » Mon Jan 06, 2020 4:22 pm

Well I got the T530 from the auction above, and it had some pretty hilarious issues: the ad clearly said it had the backlit keyboard, but it didn't. The ad clearly said it had the 9 cell battery, but it had the 6 cell. The ad said it had a Samsung SSD, but it had an Intel. The ad said they'd put Win7 on it if requested, which I did, but it arrived with Win10. The seller offered to let me return it for a refund, but that's a lot of wasted time, so I asked for $50 instead, and they countered by offering to just mail me a backlit kb, 9 cell battery and Samsung SSD with Win7 on it. Accepted!

So after a bit of back and forth I have a new condition T530 with 16 gigs of RAM, the nvidia gpu, 500 gig SSD (I upgraded the 120 they sent me, and added a 1TB regular HD in the DVD bay), a battery that I'm guessing lasts over 5 hours easily (still haven't given it the cafe test), a keyboard and touchpad that I love, and an i5-3320M CPU, all for around $300. And it's a funny bonus that I have a spare non-backlit kb, two 120 gig SSD's and a good condition 6-cell battery. Was a really great experience with the seller, eventually. They made what I think was an honest mistake, probably recycling some old ebay ad copy, and owned the mistake thoroughly.

But of course now I'm wondering if I'd like the W530 even more. I didn't know it existed before, but learning about it more, it sure would be nice to have 32 gigs of RAM... It really is a shame that the T530 doesn't have the second RAM chip bay. And of course the faster i7 processor might be nice.

My T530 now has a really nicely configured Win7 and Linux Mint dual boot, everything configured just the way I like it, and imaged in Acronis. I was considering getting a W530 and putting the image onto that. I know imaging across different chipsets with Windows is generally not a good idea, but I'm wondering if the T530 and W530 are close enough? Thoughts?

Edit: And ha, reading the thread again, RealBlackStuff noticed the errors in the ad. He said "The first link also has some interesting battery info: it ships with a 6-, 8- and/or 9-cell battery." Good catch! Oh well, worked out in my favor in the end.

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Re: Any good newer thinkpads? Time to replace my T530

#19 Post by cadillacmike68 » Fri May 15, 2020 1:36 am

You should be able restore a T530 image to a W530 and vice versa. They use the same Lenovo recovery discs and this includes T430 as well. I'm going to try it this week.
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Re: Any good newer thinkpads? Time to replace my T530

#20 Post by olddog » Fri May 15, 2020 5:00 am

I have a W530, which is magnificent. However, it's not hugely different from the T530, and most people (including myself) would be quite happy with either.

It works with 8 gigs of RAM, but 16 would be better, and I have just acquired two 8 gig modules from Ebay. Mine has a good cpu and a decent SSD and I can't see myself needing (or even wanting, which is a very different thing!) anything else for many years.

The only problem with it is that the cam doesn't work, so if I need to do a Zoom session (it seems we all do, nowadays) I bring out the trusty T430. The cam problem is apparently common, and might also affect the T530, I suppose.

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Re: Any good newer thinkpads? Time to replace my T530

#21 Post by cadillacmike68 » Fri May 15, 2020 10:46 am

olddog wrote:
Fri May 15, 2020 5:00 am
I have a W530, which is magnificent. However, it's not hugely different from the T530, and most people (including myself) would be quite happy with either.

It works with 8 gigs of RAM, but 16 would be better, and I have just acquired two 8 gig modules from Ebay. Mine has a good cpu and a decent SSD and I can't see myself needing (or even wanting, which is a very different thing!) anything else for many years.

The only problem with it is that the cam doesn't work, so if I need to do a Zoom session (it seems we all do, nowadays) I bring out the trusty T430. The cam problem is apparently common, and might also affect the T530, I suppose.
I don't want to hijack the thread, but what do you mean the camera doesn't work? I haven't yet tested the camera on my T530 or W530, but there are no errors / issues in the device manager.
600
760LD FUBARd
T21 2647 T22 2647 4@ 900MHz, 1@ 1GHz SXGA+; T23 2647 2@ 1.13GHz, 1@ 1.2GHz SXGA+
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T41 T42 T43
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Re: Any good newer thinkpads? Time to replace my T530

#22 Post by olddog » Sat Jun 06, 2020 6:19 am

Although the lid has a lens for a webcam, there is no sign that a cam is even fitted (ie nothing is Device Manager to say it exists or isn't working . From memory, people say that the wires are too short and become detached. Because I have a working cam on another computer I have not bothered to trouble shoot this one.

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