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Ultra Wide Band USB and WiMAX

W500/510/520 and W700/710 series specific matters only
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Ryushin
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Ultra Wide Band USB and WiMAX

#1 Post by Ryushin » Sun Oct 05, 2008 2:42 pm

I ordered a W500 about a week ago and it's scheduled to be shipped the 8th. However, after reading that UWB USB and WiMAX are going to be included later in 2008, I'm considering waiting. I assume that the Intel 5350 WiMAX card will be an upgradeable feature in the W500 by just changing out the mini-pci card. But what about UWB USB? Can I upgrade the laptop to UWB or do I have to get it integrated?

tinkererguy
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#2 Post by tinkererguy » Tue Oct 07, 2008 9:48 pm

Same questions about W700. Anybody? How about EVDO cards, can they possibly be used instead of Wimax in the same slots (I realize Hardware Maintenance Manual doesn't mention EVDO)?
2757CTO Lenovo W700 with 17"1920x1200, NVIDIA Quadro FX3700M
C: UltraBay Intel X25-M 80GB SSD, Windows 7 x64 SP1
D: ST9500420ASG Seagate Momentus 7200.4 500GBx2 Software RAID0
http://tinkertry.com/thinkpadw520saga

tinkererguy
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#3 Post by tinkererguy » Wed Oct 08, 2008 11:37 am

tinkererguy wrote:Same questions about W700. Anybody? How about EVDO cards, can they possibly be used instead of Wimax in the same slots (I realize Hardware Maintenance Manual doesn't mention EVDO)?
Hmm, nevermind, it would seem WiFi and WiMAX are on same module/antenna assembly, so that'd leave EVDO as a different antenna type I would guess. I just thought I'd ask anyway. Seems strange that W700 would leave EVDO option out though, given they did bother to include nascent WiMAX ability.

Here's a WiMAX article
http://www.pcmag.com/article2/0,2817,2332147,00.asp
2757CTO Lenovo W700 with 17"1920x1200, NVIDIA Quadro FX3700M
C: UltraBay Intel X25-M 80GB SSD, Windows 7 x64 SP1
D: ST9500420ASG Seagate Momentus 7200.4 500GBx2 Software RAID0
http://tinkertry.com/thinkpadw520saga

tinkererguy
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#4 Post by tinkererguy » Wed Oct 08, 2008 11:41 am

Then again, page 96 of the hardware maintenance manual for the W700
http://forum.thinkpads.com/viewtopic.php?t=66020
refers to a slot with antenna lead, called
"PCI Express Mini Card for wireless LAN or Intel Turbo Memory card"
that is separate from the WiFi/WiMAX slot, which is separate from the UWB slot as well, this is all a bit confusing...
2757CTO Lenovo W700 with 17"1920x1200, NVIDIA Quadro FX3700M
C: UltraBay Intel X25-M 80GB SSD, Windows 7 x64 SP1
D: ST9500420ASG Seagate Momentus 7200.4 500GBx2 Software RAID0
http://tinkertry.com/thinkpadw520saga

QFoam
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#5 Post by QFoam » Thu Oct 09, 2008 6:15 pm

As you know, Lenovo is as of today offering WiMAX with SOME of the ThinkPads (lower-end models: SL-500, T400, etc.), but not the higher-end ThinkPads such as the W500 and W700. Press releases say they'll offer it with higher-end models sometime before the end of the year.

I've had Lenovo salespeople tell me that a user can't add the WiMAX 5350 card after-the-fact to the W700, but I tend to doubt the truthfulness of that. As has been said here, the antenna assembly is most likely the same.

But here's the problem with adding it after the fact. Let's say that you shell out your $50 or so to buy a 5350 card from newegg or whatnot, and then put it into your W700. It won't work. That's because the W700's BIOS knows that it didn't come from Lenovo. Lenovo apparently has some difference in the serial number for cards that they provide. You will be able to buy the card separately from Lenovo itself, but they'll likely charge you over $200. At least, that's what they're doing with Intel's 4965AGN card (last year's WiFi card from Intel).

Basically, Lenovo and the other manufacturers don't realize that we're buying laptops meant to last 4 years or so. And that there's a big advantage to having a built-in card that uses the built-in antenna in the display housing. I've seen people get 3x the WiFi connection speed by using such an antenna, vs. using the tiny antenna in a dongle or external add-on card. So, from an informed buyer's standpoint, it's irrelevant that a WiMAX network won't be available in your area until next year.

I've got a W700 on order, and am waiting for it to ship. I've been told that, if Lenovo offers the 5350 card for the W700 before my order ships, then I'll be able to add it to my configuration over the phone. So I called Lenovo's business sales line today, and told the salesperson precisely why I want the 5350 card. And I told him that I'd hate to have to cancel my order due to something so silly as the fact that they have the cards but simply won't put them in the W700. He typed in what I said and told me he would submit it to his manager. I told him that people in forums across the web are canceling or holding back their W500, W700, etc. orders due to this issue.

I suggest that you call Lenovo sales and tell them the same thing. Preferably talk to business sales. And specifically ask the salesperson to tell their manager of your request. Then perhaps something will sink in and we'll be able to get the WiMAX cards in the machines sooner rather than later.

tinkererguy
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#6 Post by tinkererguy » Tue Oct 14, 2008 1:24 pm

Then there's Gobi support, for seamlessly roaming across 3G networks:
http://www.qctconnect.com/products/gobi.html
Wondering when Lenovo will offer it, and antenna pre-reqs, etc...
2757CTO Lenovo W700 with 17"1920x1200, NVIDIA Quadro FX3700M
C: UltraBay Intel X25-M 80GB SSD, Windows 7 x64 SP1
D: ST9500420ASG Seagate Momentus 7200.4 500GBx2 Software RAID0
http://tinkertry.com/thinkpadw520saga

CommSoft
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Any updates?

#7 Post by CommSoft » Mon Nov 03, 2008 11:31 am

Anyone have any idea when the UWB and WiMax options will actually be available on the W700? I'm not so focused on WiMax, but I'm actually holding off on an order due to the UWB thing (and thinking about a Dell M6400 instead in the interim).

tinkererguy
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#8 Post by tinkererguy » Tue Nov 04, 2008 1:07 am

Well, I did notice that my W700, that has no UWB or WiMax, still already had a yellow antenna lead in the mini-pci spot that the UWB card could go into someday. So doesn't appear to be a big deal to do an upgrade later. WiMax, it would seem would replace the current WiFi module with it's 3 antenna leads. So perhaps this isn't a big deal, but haven't researched it very well though.

See my pix here, looking carefully at the dead-end yellow wire near CPU fan at top left:
http://picasaweb.google.com/tinkererguy ... 0423539746
2757CTO Lenovo W700 with 17"1920x1200, NVIDIA Quadro FX3700M
C: UltraBay Intel X25-M 80GB SSD, Windows 7 x64 SP1
D: ST9500420ASG Seagate Momentus 7200.4 500GBx2 Software RAID0
http://tinkertry.com/thinkpadw520saga

comptiger5000
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#9 Post by comptiger5000 » Wed Nov 05, 2008 10:53 am

Does anybody know if the W500 has the antenna lead for UWB installed? I doubt mine does, as the invoice lists "no uwb antenna" as an option. How hard would it be to install later (if possible without replacing display case)?

QFoam
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Re: Any updates?

#10 Post by QFoam » Wed Nov 05, 2008 11:17 am

CommSoft wrote:Anyone have any idea when the UWB and WiMax options will actually be available on the W700? I'm not so focused on WiMax, but I'm actually holding off on an order due to the UWB thing (and thinking about a Dell M6400 instead in the interim).
I actually saw Ultra-Wideband show up in Lenovo's educational configurations for the W700 for only one or two days in the beginning of October. So, at that time, I looked up UWB devices on Amazon, and found only:

http://www.amazon.com/Iogear-GUWH104KIT ... B000UU46W8
http://www.amazon.com/D-Link-Certified- ... B000VINUOE

and these, which are slight variations of the same product:

http://www.amazon.com/Belkin-F5U301-Cab ... B000LP9RQC
http://www.amazon.com/Belkin-Certified- ... B000UYWTWS
http://www.amazon.com/Belkin-Wireless-U ... B000WM5HUO

People who bought them said that the useful range was about 7-10 feet. Plus they said that you absolutely have to have an unobstructed line-of-sight between the antennas of the two pieces of equipment that are communicating via UWB. If someone so much as walks between the two, you lose communication.

So, what I'm wondering is, if Amazon basically has only three pieces of equipment that use UWB, and if its operation is so frail, then is it really going to be worthwhile? Plus it constitutes a noise source for other nearby wireless communications.

Regarding WiMAX, I found some documentation from Lenovo saying that you CAN add it to your laptop yourself! Here are the details:

http://www.buy-a-thon.com/reviews/W700- ... .htm#wimax

That's despite the fact that a Lenovo salesperson told me that you can't. BTW, three weeks ago, Lenovo sales told me they'd begin offering WiMAX as a configuration option for the W700 in a couple of weeks.
W700 T9600 @2.8GHz Vista64
8GBram 2GBTurbo 160GB+320GB @7.2k
17" 1920x1200 QuadroFX 3700M/1GB
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tinkererguy
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#11 Post by tinkererguy » Wed Nov 05, 2008 12:42 pm

QFoam, fantastic information, thank you so much for sharing your research with us!
2757CTO Lenovo W700 with 17"1920x1200, NVIDIA Quadro FX3700M
C: UltraBay Intel X25-M 80GB SSD, Windows 7 x64 SP1
D: ST9500420ASG Seagate Momentus 7200.4 500GBx2 Software RAID0
http://tinkertry.com/thinkpadw520saga

tinkererguy
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#12 Post by tinkererguy » Fri Dec 19, 2008 7:54 am

This Mobile Broadband Connection Manager download:
http://www-307.ibm.com/pc/support/site. ... MIGR-70946

sure seems to hint 3G support is coming to the W700, or perhaps they just mean it as a mechanism to get started using your WiMax:
http://www.buy-a-thon.com/reviews/W700- ... .htm#wimax

However, I have a 5350 installed (in place of original 5300 WiFi module), same 3 antenna leads, easy to do. Vista 64 Device Manager shows WiMax module, but it's disabled, despite making sure it's enabled in BIOS. Don't have WiMax subscription anyway.

I am still hoping someday that my T61p's EVDO Sierra MC5725 will be somehow usable in W700 w/new BIOS (now doesn't show as an option in BIOS at all), perhaps in the 5300/5350 slot (loosing WiFi), or one of the other available mini PCI slots someday (antenna leads an issue of course).
2757CTO Lenovo W700 with 17"1920x1200, NVIDIA Quadro FX3700M
C: UltraBay Intel X25-M 80GB SSD, Windows 7 x64 SP1
D: ST9500420ASG Seagate Momentus 7200.4 500GBx2 Software RAID0
http://tinkertry.com/thinkpadw520saga

tinkererguy
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#13 Post by tinkererguy » Fri Dec 19, 2008 8:21 am

It would seem AT&T Ericsson MOBILE BROADBAND MODULE F3507G.
http://forum.thinkpads.com/viewtopic.ph ... 1da166d2b7

might be the only EVDO for W700 out there currently: this site claims works on W700:
http://cgi.ebay.com/NEW-ATT-3G-Broadban ... 7C294%3A50

still hard to guess if antenna can be added to LCD after manufacture though (no reference in Hardware Maintenance Manual), but would be nifty if perhaps the UWB antenna can be used for EVDO, running it to the turbo memory slot (it's long enough), but that still leaves AUX connector empty:
http://picasaweb.google.com/tinkererguy ... 3601340706
2757CTO Lenovo W700 with 17"1920x1200, NVIDIA Quadro FX3700M
C: UltraBay Intel X25-M 80GB SSD, Windows 7 x64 SP1
D: ST9500420ASG Seagate Momentus 7200.4 500GBx2 Software RAID0
http://tinkertry.com/thinkpadw520saga

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