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Looking to Upgrade from a T500 - Need something with the 2 buttons below touch pad

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SudoHacks
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Looking to Upgrade from a T500 - Need something with the 2 buttons below touch pad

#1 Post by SudoHacks » Mon May 11, 2020 5:37 pm

Hey Folks,

I've been a loyal Thinkpad user since the T23. I have a senior client on a T500 that I need to find a replacement/upgrade laptop for.

My client has some usability needs, I'm looking to go lighter but retain the 15.6" screen, but what is also really important is the 2 buttons below the touch pad. My client can't get the hang of the nub, and needs the 2 buttons below the touchpad. This will basically be a web surfer and word processor, so probably not much need for high end GPU etc...

My client wanted brand new but I've been going through Laptop models on the Lenovo site and the only thing I've found that has the 2 buttons below the touch pad is the Legion Y540 15". Is the Legion Y540 a decent option? I don't really know Lenovo products beyond the T/W Thinkpad lines. Alternatively, if needed I could go refurbished. What's better than a T500 but still has those touchpad buttons? I'm currently using a W520, which is great, but too heavy and power hungry.

Appreciate any suggestions.

Thanks.
Current Line Up: W520, T500, T61, T43, T23...

atagunov
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Re: Looking to Upgrade from a T500 - Need something with the 2 buttons below touch pad

#2 Post by atagunov » Mon May 11, 2020 6:54 pm

SudoHacks wrote:
Mon May 11, 2020 5:37 pm
I'm currently using a W520, which is great, but too heavy and power hungry.
T430 with a T420 keyboard? Or plain T430. Lighter than 15", got buttons, a little less power-hungry than W520.
T520 is horribly heavy. You could throw away CD drive and go for a smaller battery.. But no other way to make it lighter comes to my mind

Thinking out of the box: one could probably fit a wireless mouse adapter internally somewhere and just carry around a modern Thinkpad + a wireless mouse?
X220, 2 *T520

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Re: Looking to Upgrade from a T500 - Need something with the 2 buttons below touch pad

#3 Post by TPFanatic » Mon May 11, 2020 8:53 pm

T520 is actually reasonably light in my experience, the GFRP base saves a bit of weight compared to the CRFP in T510 and T500. If your client needs 15.6" I'd recommend going for T520 or T530. The screens are good quality.

If they will accept 14", you get options in the T420, T430, T420s, and T430s, which are quite a bit lighter than T500, the -s models especially; however, their screens are garbage without pricey IPS mods.
lenovo T420 i5 2520m 16GB QHD w/ eGPU GTX 960
lenovos T520 i7 2720qm 8GB FHD, T420s i5 3320m 8GB QHD, T430 i5 3320m 8GB FHD, T430 i5 3320m 8GB FHD w/ Optimus, S1 Yoga i7 4600u 8GB FHD
IBM X601 Tablet L7500 8GB SXGA+
Enable 2 finger scroll on old Synaptics touchpads.

SudoHacks
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Re: Looking to Upgrade from a T500 - Need something with the 2 buttons below touch pad

#4 Post by SudoHacks » Mon May 11, 2020 9:33 pm

Yeah I think the 15.6" screen is pretty key as well, eyesight is poor and I'll be having to scale the resolution up at least 150%. Looks like a T520/30 might be a good bet. Refurbed models on ebay seem to be pretty reasonable, considerably cheaper than something new that's for sure. I don't think I'd get buy in on an external mouse. I don't know why they got rid of the touchpad buttons, I have one Thinkpad that doesn't have the buttons and it makes me crazy, don't blame my client for not getting around it either.

Thanks for the suggestions
Current Line Up: W520, T500, T61, T43, T23...

kfzhu1229
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Re: Looking to Upgrade from a T500 - Need something with the 2 buttons below touch pad

#5 Post by kfzhu1229 » Tue May 12, 2020 12:35 am

SudoHacks wrote:
Mon May 11, 2020 9:33 pm
Yeah I think the 15.6" screen is pretty key as well, eyesight is poor and I'll be having to scale the resolution up at least 150%. Looks like a T520/30 might be a good bet. Refurbed models on ebay seem to be pretty reasonable, considerably cheaper than something new that's for sure. I don't think I'd get buy in on an external mouse. I don't know why they got rid of the touchpad buttons, I have one Thinkpad that doesn't have the buttons and it makes me crazy, don't blame my client for not getting around it either.

Thanks for the suggestions
Before you go on eBay, might I say I also have a T520 with i7 and FHD screen that I am planning to sell some time and that I am also in Toronto, would you be interested in this offer?
Also, just so you know, the ThinkPad lineup is a very different animal compared to the Lenovo's own in house lineups like Ideapad, the quality of which isn't even near even some of the worst ThinkPads.
While the newest ThinkPads and Elitebooks dropped the two physical touchpad buttons, the Dell Latitude didn't. Even the newest Latitude 5501 has those buttons with the touchpad as well as a pointing stick
Dell Lat CP MMX-233 64mb 40gb W2k
600 PII-266 416mb 40gb WXP
T23 PIII 1.13ghz 1gb W7
Precision M4300 X9000 8gb 160gb WUXGA 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)

SudoHacks
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Re: Looking to Upgrade from a T500 - Need something with the 2 buttons below touch pad

#6 Post by SudoHacks » Tue May 12, 2020 11:35 am

Interesting. I didn't think the rest of the Lenovo line really lived up to the Thinkpad legacy. I'll message you if I end up going for a T520. I've dabbled a little with Dells. The ones I've worked with haven't really impressed me, but a newer Dell could be the right solution for my end user. Thanks.
Current Line Up: W520, T500, T61, T43, T23...

kfzhu1229
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Re: Looking to Upgrade from a T500 - Need something with the 2 buttons below touch pad

#7 Post by kfzhu1229 » Tue May 12, 2020 1:55 pm

SudoHacks wrote:
Tue May 12, 2020 11:35 am
Interesting. I didn't think the rest of the Lenovo line really lived up to the Thinkpad legacy. I'll message you if I end up going for a T520. I've dabbled a little with Dells. The ones I've worked with haven't really impressed me, but a newer Dell could be the right solution for my end user. Thanks.
If you see repair videos on YouTube for the likes of some Lenovo Ideapads and such you can see the internal design is absolutely horrible, while at the same time you don't even see mobo repair videos such as a shorted capacitor or dead SuperIO (Something very, very common for the Lenovo in house laptops to develop) for the newer ThinkPads because they simply don't fail as often. The ThinkPad E and L series still aren't that great in longevity but still better than the Ideapads. My cousin had a Lenovo Ideapad with a Sandy Bridge i5 and it broke catastrophically in 3 years while my T530 and my mum's X220 are still very much fully functional today.
The Dells are very similar in this aspect, perhaps less dramatic because the Inspirons and Vostros are built better than the Ideapads. But that said if you had issues with some Dell Inspirons or Vostros it is perfectly normal as those things don't hold a candle against the likes of Latitude, XPS or Precision in terms of durability.
The Latitudes today are still less elegant as the ThinkPads, being a little bigger and a little heavier, with bland looking black finish and hinges that aren't as elegant as the ThinkPads, but that said the likes of T590 and T490 skimmed down on things like two upgradable DIMM slots (and of course, the lack of the physical trackpad buttons).
Then again, if things like long battery life and slim form factor aren't a problem with your client you might be better served with a T520 or T530 (Don't expect much battery life out of my T520 with its heaty i7-2860qm and NVS 4200M).
Also depending on the specs of your T500 I might be interested in that too if you get the T520 from me and don't need the T500 anymore.
Dell Lat CP MMX-233 64mb 40gb W2k
600 PII-266 416mb 40gb WXP
T23 PIII 1.13ghz 1gb W7
Precision M4300 X9000 8gb 160gb WUXGA 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)

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Re: Looking to Upgrade from a T500 - Need something with the 2 buttons below touch pad

#8 Post by SudoHacks » Tue May 12, 2020 2:25 pm

Great info thanks for taking the time. Once I upgrade, I'll probably hold on to that T500. I put a new hard drive in it a few months ago, and as far as I can tell it was working great. I think my client is just getting impatient, it occurs to me now maybe maxing out the RAM would speed things up enough. The T500s are great for a lot of things still, I've bought a bunch of them over the years and only have one that won't post. I have a T440p as a kitchen surfer right now, the thin-ness and battery life are amazing, but that buttonless touchpad drives me bananas. FWIW it would be very hard for me to give up the touchpad on my W520, love the textured style. I used to be all nub, but now totally converted to the touchpad.
Current Line Up: W520, T500, T61, T43, T23...

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Re: Looking to Upgrade from a T500 - Need something with the 2 buttons below touch pad

#9 Post by TPFanatic » Tue May 12, 2020 6:16 pm

Try giving it an SSD as well, it'll speed up everything.
lenovo T420 i5 2520m 16GB QHD w/ eGPU GTX 960
lenovos T520 i7 2720qm 8GB FHD, T420s i5 3320m 8GB QHD, T430 i5 3320m 8GB FHD, T430 i5 3320m 8GB FHD w/ Optimus, S1 Yoga i7 4600u 8GB FHD
IBM X601 Tablet L7500 8GB SXGA+
Enable 2 finger scroll on old Synaptics touchpads.

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Re: Looking to Upgrade from a T500 - Need something with the 2 buttons below touch pad

#10 Post by 789 » Wed Oct 21, 2020 9:09 am

TPFanatic wrote:
Tue May 12, 2020 6:16 pm
Try giving it an SSD
I did that. Booted from a CD, installed win 2003, but at the first reboot T500 gives me the "disk read error occured" excuse.
On the exact same SSD there is a Linux partition which T500 is willing to see and boot. It seems T500 has a problem with Windows on an SSD.
If I put this SSD into a Dell, win 2003 boots and functions.

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Re: Looking to Upgrade from a T500 - Need something with the 2 buttons below touch pad

#11 Post by MikalE » Wed Oct 21, 2020 10:11 am

Never had a problem with Windows on an SSD in a T500.
A31p P-IV 2Ghz, 2MB, 2653-R6U
T500 T9600 2055-BE9
T510 i5 4384-DV7
T510 i7 4349-A64
T520 i7QM 4242-4UU Highly Modified

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Re: Looking to Upgrade from a T500 - Need something with the 2 buttons below touch pad

#12 Post by kfzhu1229 » Wed Oct 21, 2020 11:02 am

Think it's because of AHCI vs IDE legacy SATA modes. AFAIK Windows 2003 will not support AHCI mode, only Windows vista and up supports it. There should be a toggle like that like there is one in that Dell.
Dell Lat CP MMX-233 64mb 40gb W2k
600 PII-266 416mb 40gb WXP
T23 PIII 1.13ghz 1gb W7
Precision M4300 X9000 8gb 160gb WUXGA 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)

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Re: Looking to Upgrade from a T500 - Need something with the 2 buttons below touch pad

#13 Post by dr_st » Thu Oct 22, 2020 12:47 am

kfzhu1229 wrote:
Wed Oct 21, 2020 11:02 am
Think it's because of AHCI vs IDE legacy SATA modes. AFAIK Windows 2003 will not support AHCI mode, only Windows vista and up supports it. There should be a toggle like that like there is one in that Dell.
There is a toggle in the BIOS indeed, but (a) AHCI mode can be enabled in XP/2003 - you just need to have the correct driver installed. If the installation happens with AHCI enabled, it should already install it by default. (b) the error due to AHCI mode is usually different - typically it's bugcheck 0x7B - inaccessible boot device.
Thinkpad 25 (20K7), T490 (20N3), Yoga 14 (20FY), T430s (IPS FHD + Classic Keyboard), X220 4291-4BG
X61 7673-V2V, T60 2007-QPG, T42 2373-F7G, X32 (IPS Screen), A31p w/ Ultrabay Numpad, A21m 2628-GXU

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Re: Looking to Upgrade from a T500 - Need something with the 2 buttons below touch pad

#14 Post by 789 » Fri Oct 23, 2020 9:01 am

kfzhu1229 wrote:
Wed Oct 21, 2020 11:02 am
Think it's because of AHCI
That would give a blue screen.

Dell is AHCI, T500 is AHCI, 2003 is AHCI.

T500 starts, Lilo gives me the option of Windows or Linux, if I select Windows, T500 comes up with an excuse.

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