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X230 Tablet worth it in this day and age?

X230 and later series specific matters only
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swallman
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X230 Tablet worth it in this day and age?

#1 Post by swallman » Mon Jul 23, 2018 3:21 pm

So I recently sold my X230 (non-tablet) and have been trying to find a replacement. I really liked the size and performance of the X230 but really wanted to get a tablet format device (mainly for when laying in bed surfing the web, watching media while riding the bus, etc.)

I recently picked up a Yoga 710 (11.6") and while it's nice and slim and works as a tablet, I loathe the keyboard on it (and miss the trackpoint). Budget is tight so something like the 260/370/380 Yoga's are sort of out of the picture.

So now thinking maybe I should look at the X230 tablet? Plenty of nicer ones on Ebay at decent prices, but just wondering if they're worth it?

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I'm thinking about a non-tablet for that very reason

#2 Post by SurrealMustard » Tue Jul 24, 2018 5:16 pm

swallman wrote:
Mon Jul 23, 2018 3:21 pm
So I recently sold my X230 (non-tablet) and have been trying to find a replacement. I really liked the size and performance of the X230 but really wanted to get a tablet format device (mainly for when laying in bed surfing the web, watching media while riding the bus, etc.)

I recently picked up a Yoga 710 (11.6") and while it's nice and slim and works as a tablet, I loathe the keyboard on it (and miss the trackpoint). Budget is tight so something like the 260/370/380 Yoga's are sort of out of the picture.

So now thinking maybe I should look at the X230 tablet? Plenty of nicer ones on Ebay at decent prices, but just wondering if they're worth it?
I'm thinking of picking up an X230 with many of the same activities in mind. I'm actively seeking a non-tablet, however, since I don't perform much stylus-based annotation. The thinner and more compact nature of the standard X230 appeals to me for portability and tablet-less tabletability. The only disadvantage is that you aren't guaranteed an acceptable ("Prem.") screen with the non-tablet, as so many of them were sadly banished to a life of crummy LCD panels. If I do find it necessary to mark up some photos, then I'd probably just get an old cheap (outboard) Wacom gadget.

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Re: X230 Tablet worth it in this day and age?

#3 Post by ZaZ » Wed Jul 25, 2018 1:19 am

swallman wrote:
Mon Jul 23, 2018 3:21 pm
I really liked the size and performance of the X230 but really wanted to get a tablet format device
Your and my definition of worth may vary, perhaps widely, but I think that's an answer to your question.
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swallman
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Re: X230 Tablet worth it in this day and age?

#4 Post by swallman » Wed Jul 25, 2018 3:33 pm

ZaZ wrote:
Wed Jul 25, 2018 1:19 am
swallman wrote:
Mon Jul 23, 2018 3:21 pm
I really liked the size and performance of the X230 but really wanted to get a tablet format device
Your and my definition of worth may vary, perhaps widely, but I think that's an answer to your question.
Thanks (I think lol)...

I'm about 95% certain I'm getting an X230T - just waiting for my current Yoga to sell on eBay.

PS - nice to see another Minnesota person on here.

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Re: X230 Tablet worth it in this day and age?

#5 Post by Dekks » Thu Jul 26, 2018 8:24 am

IMO next to my X32 the one of the best TPs i've had, and that's after using a 220T for the last 6 years at work till it finally started to fail, i kinda miss the 220 kb but it's just as hardy and withstands the abuse on a daily basis
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SurrealMustard
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Took the plunge...

#6 Post by SurrealMustard » Tue Jul 31, 2018 8:43 pm

Well, I pulled the trigger on an X230 since writing that post and have had mixed feelings; mostly positive. Performance, battery life, the keyboard, the (IPS) screen, and design/portability are all top-notch, but the trackpad lives up to its notoriety for being bad (we're talking 50-60% as efficient as a good trackpad or mouse). Initially, the TrackPoint frustrated me too. I gave up, highly discouraged, on the night after purchasing the machine and just shut the PC down and went to bed sad. The next day, I did some research and found out how to turn the TrackPoint sensitivity down to make it usable. It's now about as good as the X200 (60-85% as efficient as a good trackpad/mouse) and at least tolerable, but scarcely better than the Yoga 2 Pro that I gave up on for its intolerably-bad trackpad acceleration that is baked into the software. Maybe I'm just out of practice. And yes, I am a stickler for screens and pointing devices on all computing gear.

I've got to say, I do like the compact and efficient of the design of the non-tablet model a lot more than the tablet though. You can't beat getting the M-class processor in such a compact case.

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Re: X230 Tablet worth it in this day and age?

#7 Post by Dekks » Wed Aug 01, 2018 3:41 am

SurrealMustard, Windows or Linux?
Home Win10/i5 Arch//i3-gaps T61//GNOME 3/X230 Tablet //Spectrwm X61 Bunsenlabs 9.4/X32/X201i
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swallman
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Re: X230 Tablet worth it in this day and age?

#8 Post by swallman » Wed Aug 01, 2018 4:42 pm

Well, I have an X230T arriving tomorrow so hopefully I'm not too turned off by the bulk of it. Of course if I am, I'm sure I can sell it and there's plenty of X230's (non-tablet) out there. :)

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Windows!

#9 Post by SurrealMustard » Wed Aug 01, 2018 7:17 pm

swallman wrote:
Wed Aug 01, 2018 4:42 pm
Well, I have an X230T arriving tomorrow so hopefully I'm not too turned off by the bulk of it. Of course if I am, I'm sure I can sell it and there's plenty of X230's (non-tablet) out there. :)
Not necessarily with acceptable screens, but yes, there are plenty.
Dekks wrote:
Wed Aug 01, 2018 3:41 am
SurrealMustard, Windows or Linux?
Windows.

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Re: Windows!

#10 Post by Dekks » Thu Aug 02, 2018 2:13 am

SurrealMustard wrote:
Wed Aug 01, 2018 7:17 pm
Windows.
Never had any issues with the Trackpoint on my work Windows machine, works just like any other Thinkpad. But i disable the trackpad on every one i have.
Home Win10/i5 Arch//i3-gaps T61//GNOME 3/X230 Tablet //Spectrwm X61 Bunsenlabs 9.4/X32/X201i
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Retired T60/X30/X31/X61S RIP R61/T400/T21/T43/X61T/X200T

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The same, yet different

#11 Post by SurrealMustard » Fri Aug 03, 2018 11:38 pm

Dekks wrote:
Thu Aug 02, 2018 2:13 am
SurrealMustard wrote:
Wed Aug 01, 2018 7:17 pm
Windows.
Never had any issues with the Trackpoint on my work Windows machine, works just like any other Thinkpad. But i disable the trackpad on every one i have.
I've been comparing it with the X200, and it does feel different somehow, but I can't exactly pinpoint how. I think that it's got to be the buttons; they do feel more concise on the X200. I do feel even more confident with it now, however, having switched caps from "soft rim" to "soft dome." I was also able to switch the Trackpoint sensitivity back to the driver's default using registry editor. I'm now able to get a consistent 11-14 (out of a real-world max of about 17 that can be achieved with a decent mouse) using an objective mouse accuracy test, which puts it awfully close to a decent trackpad.

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Re: X230 Tablet worth it in this day and age?

#12 Post by TPFanatic » Sun Aug 05, 2018 1:27 pm

As well as key action and feel being different across the different keyboard manufacturers, trackpoint and its buttons are also affected.
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Enable 2 finger scroll on any Synaptics touchpads with registry: http://forum.thinkpads.com/viewtopic.php?f=2&t=122612

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Re: The same, yet different

#13 Post by Dekks » Sun Aug 05, 2018 4:47 pm

SurrealMustard wrote:
Fri Aug 03, 2018 11:38 pm
I've been comparing it with the X200, and it does feel different somehow, but I can't exactly pinpoint how. I think that it's got to be the buttons; they do feel more concise on the X200. I do feel even more confident with it now, however, having switched caps from "soft rim" to "soft dome." I was also able to switch the Trackpoint sensitivity back to the driver's default using registry editor. I'm now able to get a consistent 11-14 (out of a real-world max of about 17 that can be achieved with a decent mouse) using an objective mouse accuracy test, which puts it awfully close to a decent trackpad.
the guy who writes the libinput driver did aseries of blog posts how poor the new combi trackpoints/trackpads are in that they use same hw and interrupts and it's a mess to work out how they have been prograammed.
Home Win10/i5 Arch//i3-gaps T61//GNOME 3/X230 Tablet //Spectrwm X61 Bunsenlabs 9.4/X32/X201i
Work - Win7/X220T BunsenLabs 9.4 T60p
Retired T60/X30/X31/X61S RIP R61/T400/T21/T43/X61T/X200T

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Similarity to the old way of doing things

#14 Post by SurrealMustard » Tue Aug 07, 2018 6:48 pm

Dekks wrote:
Sun Aug 05, 2018 4:47 pm
SurrealMustard wrote:
Fri Aug 03, 2018 11:38 pm
I've been comparing it with the X200, and it does feel different somehow, but I can't exactly pinpoint how. I think that it's got to be the buttons; they do feel more concise on the X200. I do feel even more confident with it now, however, having switched caps from "soft rim" to "soft dome." I was also able to switch the Trackpoint sensitivity back to the driver's default using registry editor. I'm now able to get a consistent 11-14 (out of a real-world max of about 17 that can be achieved with a decent mouse) using an objective mouse accuracy test, which puts it awfully close to a decent trackpad.
the guy who writes the libinput driver did aseries of blog posts how poor the new combi trackpoints/trackpads are in that they use same hw and interrupts and it's a mess to work out how they have been prograammed.
The X230 doesn't use that "new" system though, does it? I know that it's lumped in with the X240-and-newer ultrabooks here on the forums for some reason, (even though it shares a lot more in common with the X220 series) but isn't its UltraNav more similar to the older architecture?

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Re: X230 Tablet worth it in this day and age?

#15 Post by Dekks » Tue Aug 07, 2018 7:05 pm

The author references older trackpads and shows the maths needed to work out the acceleration etc over the different generations. It shows why the drivers in both Windows & Linux have their oddities.
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swallman
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Re: X230 Tablet worth it in this day and age?

#16 Post by swallman » Fri Aug 10, 2018 11:05 am

Just updating my original post. I did end up purchasing a really nice X230 Tablet. Currently running CloudReady (Chrome OS) in a dual-boot scenario with Windows 10 (and also Windows 7 inside VirtualBox).

What a great little laptop!

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Re: Similarity to the old way of doing things

#17 Post by Dekks » Thu Aug 16, 2018 1:35 am

SurrealMustard wrote:
Tue Aug 07, 2018 6:48 pm
The X230 doesn't use that "new" system though, does it? I know that it's lumped in with the X240-and-newer ultrabooks here on the forums for some reason, (even though it shares a lot more in common with the X220 series) but isn't its UltraNav more similar to the older architecture?
I've gone back through his blogs and on the Linux side they have re-wrote the TrackPoint code in libinput which will apply to the X230.

https://who-t.blogspot.com/2018/06/obse ... -data.html
swallman wrote:
Fri Aug 10, 2018 11:05 am
Just updating my original post. I did end up purchasing a really nice X230 Tablet. Currently running CloudReady (Chrome OS) in a dual-boot scenario with Windows 10 (and also Windows 7 inside VirtualBox).

What a great little laptop!
Nice to see you enjoying - what's it's specs?
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Retired T60/X30/X31/X61S RIP R61/T400/T21/T43/X61T/X200T

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Re: Similarity to the old way of doing things

#18 Post by swallman » Fri Aug 31, 2018 1:58 pm

It's the one with I5-3320M processor, 8 GB of RAM and a 160GB SSD. I really want to upgrade to 16GB of RAM but $$$ has been a little tight lol. Plus I want to add an mSata drive (really wanting to beef the whole thing up!). Plus get the keyboard replaced with a backlit version...

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Re: X230 Tablet worth it in this day and age?

#19 Post by USSS » Sat Sep 01, 2018 12:07 pm

@swallman:

If/when you are ready to add another 8GB of RAM, I just purchased a stick from this vendor for my x230 Tablet. This is the cheapest compatible RAM I've been able to find.
https://www.ebay.com/p/Lenovo-8GB-SO-DI ... /170078897

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Re: X230 Tablet worth it in this day and age?

#20 Post by axmaxwell » Sun Sep 02, 2018 6:36 pm

swallman wrote:
Mon Jul 23, 2018 3:21 pm
So now thinking maybe I should look at the X230 tablet? Plenty of nicer ones on Ebay at decent prices, but just wondering if they're worth it?
I had a 2012 Acer Aspire with an AMD A8 and 6 gigs of RAM, 7460G gpu. I also had it 2015 Dell Inspiron with an AMD A10, 8 gigs of RAM and an R6 kaveri GPU. I sold both of them to get x230t, and while I'm not used to having such a compact laptop, the functionality and being able to have an expanded battery or a docking station, while also having the windows 10 touchscreen capabilities is really awesome. While I miss having a dedicated GPU, I feel like having 16 gigs of RAM capability really makes up for it. There's also a noticeable gain in connectivity having the Intel ultimate N Wi-Fi card.

I looked at newer laptops and I know the problem with them is durability. It's just not there anymore.
e-Machine upgrade : mini ITX, I7-4790K, 16gb ram GTX-1050tiLP
Home Desktop: I5-2500k, R9 390X, 24gb ram, 14tb storage
X230t: I7-3520m, 16gb ram, 128gb msata ssd, 2tb hdd

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