Starting an IBM ThinkPad Collecton on a Budget?

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gfuller
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Starting an IBM ThinkPad Collecton on a Budget?

#1 Post by gfuller » Sun Nov 12, 2017 8:14 pm

I'm new to the ThinkPads forums. I currently have a ThinkPad T420 which I use as my "daily driver", but I'd like to eventually expand my collection to include older IBM ThinkPads?

What is the best way to start a ThinkPad collection on a budget? I've tried going to my local resell shops (like Goodwill) but they have nothing. It seems like Missouri is a black hole for old computers.
ThinkPads: T420

Thinkpad4by3
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Re: Starting an IBM ThinkPad Collecton on a Budget?

#2 Post by Thinkpad4by3 » Sun Nov 12, 2017 8:30 pm

Want an XP machine? T4x, especially the T42p and T43p 15"
Want W2000/98? A31p.
Want a Nt4/98? 600E or 600X? (770 good too)
Want 95 fast? 760 series (760E,760X,and 765 are best) (385 and 380 are also good)
Want 95/DOS? 755 series.

These will run you the least amount of cash. Don't bet your heart on a s30 or 750P, they come very little and fetch good prices. I recommend get a pretty universal A31p. It has the most expandability, best screen, most options and supports a wide variety of OS's. Want a pure DOSBOX, a 755C will run you nothing and it works great. I scavenge eBay like a hawk and if you do too, you can pick up machines like my 755CDV for next to nothing.

Little trick for the older machines(1996-pre), look for models with one slider control on the display. If it has 2, run for the hills(except on select 755C models. Any 365C and 755 machine and prior will have an 's' in the name like 755Cs or 365CsD. This has a junk screen that is impossible to use.
Welcome to the jungle, we have FrankenPads
If you want it you're going to bleed, but that is the price to pay
And you're a very rare mobo, very hard to get
You can see the blinky lights, but you won't get them for free.

gfuller
Posts: 10
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Location: Warrensburg, Missouri

Re: Starting an IBM ThinkPad Collecton on a Budget?

#3 Post by gfuller » Sun Nov 12, 2017 8:43 pm

Thinkpad4by3 wrote:
Sun Nov 12, 2017 8:30 pm
Want an XP machine? T4x, especially the T42p and T43p 15"
Want W2000/98? A31p.
Want a Nt4/98? 600E or 600X? (770 good too)
Want 95 fast? 760 series (760E,760X,and 765 are best) (385 and 380 are also good)
Want 95/DOS? 755 series.

These will run you the least amount of cash. Don't bet your heart on a s30 or 750P, they come very little and fetch good prices. I recommend get a pretty universal A31p. It has the most expandability, best screen, most options and supports a wide variety of OS's. Want a pure DOSBOX, a 755C will run you nothing and it works great. I scavenge eBay like a hawk and if you do too, you can pick up machines like my 755CDV for next to nothing.

Little trick for the older machines(1996-pre), look for models with one slider control on the display. If it has 2, run for the hills(except on select 755C models. Any 365C and 755 machine and prior will have an 's' in the name like 755Cs or 365CsD. This has a junk screen that is impossible to use.
Thanks for your quick response! I'm stuck between W2000/98 or XP. I have a HP Pavilion that runs Windows XP which I'd like to replace with an older IBM ThinkPad (pre-Lenovo, thus pre-2005) machine for portability. Plus the HP Pavilion has capacitors that are failing. It will see minimal use (it's only used for Windows XP-specific programs.)

Since I already planned on buying a IBM ThinkPad, I thought why not just knock out two birds with one stone.
ThinkPads: T420

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Re: Starting an IBM ThinkPad Collecton on a Budget?

#4 Post by Thinkpad4by3 » Sun Nov 12, 2017 8:56 pm

Welcome to the jungle, we have FrankenPads
If you want it you're going to bleed, but that is the price to pay
And you're a very rare mobo, very hard to get
You can see the blinky lights, but you won't get them for free.

gfuller
Posts: 10
Joined: Wed Nov 08, 2017 11:20 pm
Location: Warrensburg, Missouri

Re: Starting an IBM ThinkPad Collecton on a Budget?

#5 Post by gfuller » Sun Nov 12, 2017 9:22 pm

Thinkpad4by3 wrote:
Sun Nov 12, 2017 8:56 pm
Get it while it's hot! https://www.ebay.com/itm/Ibm-T42p/322823210914?
Unfortunately, right now I'm short on cash. I am planning to start saving to purchase a computer to replace the XPavilion and start an IBM ThinkPad collection. :wink:

Do deals like the aforementioned occur a lot?
ThinkPads: T420

Thinkpad4by3
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Re: Starting an IBM ThinkPad Collecton on a Budget?

#6 Post by Thinkpad4by3 » Sun Nov 12, 2017 9:39 pm

I search eBay about 3 times a day looking for old computers. If you want, if I see a TP that fits your range of models you would like, I can send links your way.

Refer to thinkwiki.org to find models to look out for.
Welcome to the jungle, we have FrankenPads
If you want it you're going to bleed, but that is the price to pay
And you're a very rare mobo, very hard to get
You can see the blinky lights, but you won't get them for free.

kfzhu1229
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Re: Starting an IBM ThinkPad Collecton on a Budget?

#7 Post by kfzhu1229 » Sun Nov 12, 2017 9:49 pm

gfuller wrote:
Sun Nov 12, 2017 9:22 pm
Unfortunately, right now I'm short on cash. I am planning to start saving to purchase a computer to replace the XPavilion and start an IBM ThinkPad collection. :wink:

Do deals like the aforementioned occur a lot?
Well, if you want the beauty IPS display that ppl love about for those computers in a functional shape, you have to spend $100+ or build yourself. Also, if you want that, stay away from 14.1" as none of those offer IPS.
Also, those aren't very, very common on eBay as the survival rate of IPS displays aren't that good, and I wouldn't call that a budget deal. I've seen listings of those for $50 because they do not know about the IPS display. Same applies for the motherboard, though it is much more rare. It is next to impossible to find a T4xp motherboard or A3xp motherboard.
If you want a cheap and smaller pre-2005 XP machine and do not value IPS all that much, go with the 14.1" models. I have a 14.1" T42 and 14.1" T43 (all with SXGA+ display), and I'd pretty much sell them for no more than $50 each.
Patience, boys. All good things to those who wait. – Mother Gothel (Tangled)
_________________________________
T23 PIII 1.13ghz 1gb W7
2xT43 14.1" 2.26 SXGA+ 2gb 1*fp W10
T530i 15.6" i7 16gb fp W10
Flexview UXGA:
A30p PIII 1.2 1gb W7 (IDTech)
T43p 2.26 2gb fp W10

gfuller
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Joined: Wed Nov 08, 2017 11:20 pm
Location: Warrensburg, Missouri

Re: Starting an IBM ThinkPad Collecton on a Budget?

#8 Post by gfuller » Sun Nov 12, 2017 10:24 pm

Thinkpad4by3 wrote:
Sun Nov 12, 2017 9:39 pm
I search eBay about 3 times a day looking for old computers. If you want, if I see a TP that fits your range of models you would like, I can send links your way.

Refer to thinkwiki.org to find models to look out for.
That would be greatly appreciated.
kfzhu1229 wrote:
Sun Nov 12, 2017 9:49 pm
gfuller wrote:
Sun Nov 12, 2017 9:22 pm
Unfortunately, right now I'm short on cash. I am planning to start saving to purchase a computer to replace the XPavilion and start an IBM ThinkPad collection. :wink:

Do deals like the aforementioned occur a lot?
Well, if you want the beauty IPS display that ppl love about for those computers in a functional shape, you have to spend $100+ or build yourself. Also, if you want that, stay away from 14.1" as none of those offer IPS.
Also, those aren't very, very common on eBay as the survival rate of IPS displays aren't that good, and I wouldn't call that a budget deal. I've seen listings of those for $50 because they do not know about the IPS display. Same applies for the motherboard, though it is much more rare. It is next to impossible to find a T4xp motherboard or A3xp motherboard.
If you want a cheap and smaller pre-2005 XP machine and do not value IPS all that much, go with the 14.1" models. I have a 14.1" T42 and 14.1" T43 (all with SXGA+ display), and I'd pretty much sell them for no more than $50 each.
That seems ideal. I'm not looking for anything super fancy. I want something that works, runs Windows XP programs fairly well, and possibly some web surfing. Nothing too major, and the web surfing part would be mostly used for sites that don't have too much modern crap.

EDIT: Since I need a machine that can be used with WiFi, which "IBM-era ThinkPad" machine works best with WiFi and some (minimal) web browsing? My current XP Machine is used mainly for converting MIDI files to FMOD files using Bleeper Music Maker. I may run OpenMPT and/or other free softsynths that will run under Windows 98/2000/XP without too many quibbles. I currently run BMM and OpenMPT on my HP Pavilion (which has an AMD Sempron 3000+ @ 1.81GHz, 384MB RAM) and they run fairly well.

I may also use the machine for personal website coding (HTML/CSS), which it should have no issues with at all.

I've also thrown the idea around in my brain that I may experiment with dual-booting the machine with some sort of Linux distro. (I currently run Linux Mint on a desktop, which I use as a file server and for TiMidity++.) But I'm not sure how a machine of that age will handle dual-boot. (Any input?)

I've found that most people/collectors have had fairly good luck with the Txx (specifically T4x and T6x) series, but I've heard that the A61p is fairly popular for an entry-level collector machine that can still be used for simple things.
ThinkPads: T420

kfzhu1229
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Re: Starting an IBM ThinkPad Collecton on a Budget?

#9 Post by kfzhu1229 » Wed Nov 15, 2017 4:11 pm

gfuller wrote:
Sun Nov 12, 2017 10:24 pm
EDIT: Since I need a machine that can be used with WiFi, which "IBM-era ThinkPad" machine works best with WiFi and some (minimal) web browsing? My current XP Machine is used mainly for converting MIDI files to FMOD files using Bleeper Music Maker. I may run OpenMPT and/or other free softsynths that will run under Windows 98/2000/XP without too many quibbles. I currently run BMM and OpenMPT on my HP Pavilion (which has an AMD Sempron 3000+ @ 1.81GHz, 384MB RAM) and they run fairly well.

I may also use the machine for personal website coding (HTML/CSS), which it should have no issues with at all.

I've also thrown the idea around in my brain that I may experiment with dual-booting the machine with some sort of Linux distro. (I currently run Linux Mint on a desktop, which I use as a file server and for TiMidity++.) But I'm not sure how a machine of that age will handle dual-boot. (Any input?)
Well, I never tried Linux Windows dual boot before, but I tried quad booting with Windows NT 4.0 SP6a, Windows 2000 Prof, Windows 2003 and Windows 7 and my T42 and T43 have no trouble doing that (provided that you have enough hard drive space).
gfuller wrote:
Sun Nov 12, 2017 10:24 pm
I've found that most people/collectors have had fairly good luck with the Txx (specifically T4x and T6x) series, but I've heard that the A61p is fairly popular for an entry-level collector machine that can still be used for simple things.
Well, it is A31p that is popular, as it is the last A series machine ever made. I personally liked the A30p better than A31p because of how much cooler PIII-M is compared to P4-M. And no, it is not an entry-level collector machine as it is rare to find these days and I don't see anyone will sell any of these p computers with IPS displays and stuff anytime soon, unless you want to upgrade a non-p one to p one yourself.
As for T4x and T6x, they are very easy to find for cheap, and they are very good, so that is the reason why most folks here have one of those. The p model is hard to find, again. I had to literally personally build my T43p and A30p from parts to get the full p experience.
T4x is better in terms of build quality, while T6x is better in terms of speed and futureproofing, relatively speaking.
I personally still use my T43p for portable use. For what I am doing, I don't need anything more powerful than this, and at the same time this is a good machine to keep your computer unbloated and have more patience at times.
Patience, boys. All good things to those who wait. – Mother Gothel (Tangled)
_________________________________
T23 PIII 1.13ghz 1gb W7
2xT43 14.1" 2.26 SXGA+ 2gb 1*fp W10
T530i 15.6" i7 16gb fp W10
Flexview UXGA:
A30p PIII 1.2 1gb W7 (IDTech)
T43p 2.26 2gb fp W10

gfuller
Posts: 10
Joined: Wed Nov 08, 2017 11:20 pm
Location: Warrensburg, Missouri

Re: Starting an IBM ThinkPad Collecton on a Budget?

#10 Post by gfuller » Wed Nov 15, 2017 9:43 pm

kfzhu1229 wrote:
Wed Nov 15, 2017 4:11 pm
gfuller wrote:
Sun Nov 12, 2017 10:24 pm
EDIT: Since I need a machine that can be used with WiFi, which "IBM-era ThinkPad" machine works best with WiFi and some (minimal) web browsing? My current XP Machine is used mainly for converting MIDI files to FMOD files using Bleeper Music Maker. I may run OpenMPT and/or other free softsynths that will run under Windows 98/2000/XP without too many quibbles. I currently run BMM and OpenMPT on my HP Pavilion (which has an AMD Sempron 3000+ @ 1.81GHz, 384MB RAM) and they run fairly well.

I may also use the machine for personal website coding (HTML/CSS), which it should have no issues with at all.

I've also thrown the idea around in my brain that I may experiment with dual-booting the machine with some sort of Linux distro. (I currently run Linux Mint on a desktop, which I use as a file server and for TiMidity++.) But I'm not sure how a machine of that age will handle dual-boot. (Any input?)
Well, I never tried Linux Windows dual boot before, but I tried quad booting with Windows NT 4.0 SP6a, Windows 2000 Prof, Windows 2003 and Windows 7 and my T42 and T43 have no trouble doing that (provided that you have enough hard drive space).
gfuller wrote:
Sun Nov 12, 2017 10:24 pm
I've found that most people/collectors have had fairly good luck with the Txx (specifically T4x and T6x) series, but I've heard that the A61p is fairly popular for an entry-level collector machine that can still be used for simple things.
Well, it is A31p that is popular, as it is the last A series machine ever made. I personally liked the A30p better than A31p because of how much cooler PIII-M is compared to P4-M. And no, it is not an entry-level collector machine as it is rare to find these days and I don't see anyone will sell any of these p computers with IPS displays and stuff anytime soon, unless you want to upgrade a non-p one to p one yourself.
As for T4x and T6x, they are very easy to find for cheap, and they are very good, so that is the reason why most folks here have one of those. The p model is hard to find, again. I had to literally personally build my T43p and A30p from parts to get the full p experience.
T4x is better in terms of build quality, while T6x is better in terms of speed and futureproofing, relatively speaking.
I personally still use my T43p for portable use. For what I am doing, I don't need anything more powerful than this, and at the same time this is a good machine to keep your computer unbloated and have more patience at times.
Sorry, I'm not entirely familiar with the IBM ThinkPad numbering schemes. I'm guessing "p" is for the IPS display, which isn't a necessity. A normal display (as long as it's readable most of the time) will suffice. No money to be picky.

I've found many T4x machines on eBay, so I'm guessing that is what I'll probably end up buying. The T42 which Thinkpad4by3 linked would be great fit, if it wasn't expensive and/or at a bad time. I'm wanting something that is cheap but also in fairly decent condition; many of the cheaper ones I've found have many issues.
ThinkPads: T420

axur-delmeria
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Re: Starting an IBM ThinkPad Collecton on a Budget?

#11 Post by axur-delmeria » Wed Nov 15, 2017 11:51 pm

gfuller wrote:
Wed Nov 15, 2017 9:43 pm
Sorry, I'm not entirely familiar with the IBM ThinkPad numbering schemes. I'm guessing "p" is for the IPS display, which isn't a necessity. A normal display (as long as it's readable most of the time) will suffice. No money to be picky.
IIRC, the p is for Performance. These models usually have the most powerful GPUs in the lineup. For example, T61 can have Intel GMA X3100 or nVidia Quadro NVS 140M (comparable to 8400M), while the T61p has the nVidia Quadro FX 570M with either 128MB or 256MB dedicated VRAM (comparable to 8600M GT).
Daily driver: X220 4291-P79 i5-2520M

In reserve: X61 T7500, X60 T2300
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Re: Starting an IBM ThinkPad Collecton on a Budget?

#12 Post by kfzhu1229 » Thu Nov 16, 2017 3:08 pm

gfuller wrote:
Wed Nov 15, 2017 9:43 pm
I've found many T4x machines on eBay, so I'm guessing that is what I'll probably end up buying. The T42 which Thinkpad4by3 linked would be great fit, if it wasn't expensive and/or at a bad time. I'm wanting something that is cheap but also in fairly decent condition; many of the cheaper ones I've found have many issues.
I have two 14.1" SXGA+ T4x machines that I do not need, as I already have 2 15" T43/p machines.
One of the 14.1" is T42 w/Radeon 7500, and the other one is T43 with Radeon X300.
$50 each (I spent $35 on each SXGA+ LCD)
Or you can see on eBay if you find a better deal or something
Patience, boys. All good things to those who wait. – Mother Gothel (Tangled)
_________________________________
T23 PIII 1.13ghz 1gb W7
2xT43 14.1" 2.26 SXGA+ 2gb 1*fp W10
T530i 15.6" i7 16gb fp W10
Flexview UXGA:
A30p PIII 1.2 1gb W7 (IDTech)
T43p 2.26 2gb fp W10

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