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Thinkpad T580 FHD vs UHD version or something else?

T430 and later, plus T530 and later series specific matters only
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Joined: Sun Jun 10, 2018 7:06 am
Location: Berlin, Germany

Thinkpad T580 FHD vs UHD version or something else?

#1 Post by japanworm » Sun Jun 10, 2018 7:12 am


I've been looking for a good successor of my Thinkpad T510 for ages now.
I like how sturdy it was build and it still works great after 8 years, but I can't upgrade anymore and with only 4GB of RAM it's simply not up-to-date anymore.

What I use it mainly for:

- photo editing for web / blogs (photos will be re-sized to 600 x 400 px mainly)
- Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, watching videos via Windows Media Player
- Web surfing, blogging, Microsoft Office
- desktop replacement
- mobility not so important, but I do drive home every other weekend and take the laptop with me, so a PC desktop solution is currently not an option

I already know that I need 16 GB of RAM.
I want a comfortable keyboard, 3 years of warranty and a sturdy built notebook. Usually those are the premium business notebooks. However. they usually come with really bad displays.

In January I tested the Lenovo Thinkpad L570. The display wobbled whenever I typed and it was making me dizzy, so I sent it back immedialtey. I knew I need something sturdier.

Currently I'm testing the Thinkpad T580 (FHD, i5-8250U), HP Elitebook 850 G5 (FHD, i58250U) and the Dell XPS 15 (FHD i7-7700HQ).

My favorite is the T580.

It's ugly as always, but I'm so used to the great keyboard (from my old T510), I like that it has an exchangable external battery and it's strangely enough the fastest one among the ones I mentioned, although the Dell is quite fast as well.
The only real issue I have is the bad color range in the FHD display. It's probably only around 65% and some colors are just so wrong (I almost ordered something based on the wrong colors that were displayed ... phew...).

Yes, there's the UHD version of the T580, but it's extremely expensive and I don't want such a high resolution. Like I said I re-size my photos usually to around 600 px. That's already heavy on the eyes on FHD, but UHD would be killing it .......

The HP Elitebook 850 G5 is great and has a beautiful FHD display with 89% sRGB!
However, it is extremely slow and I don't know why. It has the exact same specs as the T580, but it boots slower, opens photos and folders, videos, websites etc. much slower. It's almost as slow as my old T510 and that's just not ok!!
Not sure if I simply got a bad module or if that's a general problem with this line.
It might be worse ordering another model just to see if it has the same issues.

The Dell XPS 15 is not a business laptop and only comes with a 1 year warranty.
The keyboard feels cheaper than on the HP and Thinkpad ... I'm currently typing on it.
The screen is brilliant though with around 98% sRGB and great brightness.
I'm worried about how long it will last. I rather trust Thinkpad as my current one has lasted for over 8 years and it's still running.

Or a completely different approach could be to get an external (21-24 inch) display with good color range and attach the laptop to it.
I don't have much space for this, though. And it's probably the most expensive option.
Also, I then should consider buying a 13 inch instead of a 15 inch laptop which is just as powerful to save place and to have something tiny in case I ever take it with me when travelling (which doesn't really happen at all though). Unfortunately there's no 13-inch Thinkpad in the T series. Not sure if the 14-inch one would be too big for this solution.

What suggestion do you have?

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