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W530 Still?

W530/W540/W541/W550 Series
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Brad
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W530 Still?

#1 Post by Brad » Thu Apr 22, 2021 9:55 am

Using a W530 for a while like since sometime in 2013.

Still does the job for me.

Not bad for a ThinkPad released in June of 2012.

Who else?

Let me hear...your praises...or?

Brad
Long Island New York
T43p 2669-Q1U, A22p's UTU A21p HXU
Transnote, 770's 8AU, 600, 701CS, 755CD

atagunov
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Re: W530 Still?

#2 Post by atagunov » Thu Apr 22, 2021 12:40 pm

I got two T520-s at home and they're working just fine. Not since 2012/2013 though, buying new is too rich for my blood :) I've had them for 5-7 years I guess. I'm not swapping them for anything else, except.. I'm probably upgrading to T530/W530 with T520 keyboards. Still got some hardware swapping to do, will keep keyboards, possibly try to keep the body of one of the T520-s and the screen too - we'll see how well T530 mobo fits into T520 body. One thing I'm missing on T520-s are 4-core CPU-s and I'm going to run them one way or another. Otherwise, yeah, I'm definitely staying with T520/T530/W530-classic keyboard camp. The 1080p panel on W530 that I just got is just gorgeous (small whitish blemish around centre 3mm in diameter not withstanding), 32Gb RAM is the biggest RAM amount I ever had. Or course you got to rock at least 16Gb RAM on these and 4-core CPU won't hurt.. Or course you absolute have to run an SSD.

I think there is a word to be said for T530 without nVidia - for a Linux developer's machine that is sometimes used with an external monitor that's probably better. They should be running cooler and have longer battery life; no need to toggle graphics in BIOS when docking. Under Windows drivers solve the issue I understand but under Linux it's a smoother ride to only have Intel graphics - unless you actually want nVidia omph and don't mind proprietary drivers; or unless you never use external monitor and are happy to switch nVidia off in BIOS.
X220, 2 *T520

Brad
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Re: W530 Still?

#3 Post by Brad » Thu Apr 22, 2021 1:39 pm

Thanks for the reply.

I bought used W530's along the way. One of the first W530's was from a forum member here in the first half of 2013.

Since then collected a few more along the way as backups.

Using the 3940XM CPU, K2000M GPU with 4 x 8Gb and an SSD the W530 serves my needs well.

Replaced the keyboard on the current example more than once (PRO TIP: only keep one or two ThinkPads out at the same time. They are black and wife can't tell the difference)

The ac adapter has been replaced several times too becoming intermittent at the plug end from bending all the time.

As long as the W530 continues to suit my needs its here to stay.

I have more than one P series workstations that will be re-homed after upgrades that are very nice and very fast, very very fast with more CPU, GPU, RAM and SSD.

Brad
Long Island New York
T43p 2669-Q1U, A22p's UTU A21p HXU
Transnote, 770's 8AU, 600, 701CS, 755CD

DiagonalArg
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Re: W530 Still?

#4 Post by DiagonalArg » Fri Apr 23, 2021 2:52 am

I'm still using mine! Along with a T530, W520 and T520.

The XX30's are where I stop. I'm not going for locked BIOS's.

My next machine: RISC-V & Coreboot! :)

m11k
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Re: W530 Still?

#5 Post by m11k » Mon Apr 26, 2021 5:04 pm

Recently switched from an aging desktop PC to a W530 on a dock as my daily driver. The W530 has double the RAM that my desktop had (32GB). Aside from running a little warm, it runs like a champ! Very usable.
atagunov wrote:
Thu Apr 22, 2021 12:40 pm
I think there is a word to be said for T530 without nVidia - for a Linux developer's machine that is sometimes used with an external monitor that's probably better. They should be running cooler and have longer battery life; no need to toggle graphics in BIOS when docking. Under Windows drivers solve the issue I understand but under Linux it's a smoother ride to only have Intel graphics - unless you actually want nVidia omph and don't mind proprietary drivers; or unless you never use external monitor and are happy to switch nVidia off in BIOS.
I completely agree with this. I wish they had a W530 without nvidia graphics, that way I could coreboot it easily and still have 32GB of RAM. I'm currently running Debian 11, and fortunately the nvidia 460 drivers work well without any problems. Video issues on my desktop PC, which also has an nvidia card (under nouveau), were part of the reason I switched to the W530.
atagunov wrote:
Thu Apr 22, 2021 12:40 pm
32Gb RAM is the biggest RAM amount I ever had.
Me too for a personally owned PC. At my work I recently evaluated an AMD EPYC system that had 64 cores (128 threads), 1TB of RAM, and 12TB of NVMe storage. I think that's the most powerful system I've ever logged onto.
DiagonalArg wrote:
Fri Apr 23, 2021 2:52 am
My next machine: RISC-V & Coreboot!
I can't wait for this either!

I have to admit, I am slightly tempted by the Purism Librem 14, running coreboot out of the box. I don't know if I can get by without a trackpoint though...
Daily Driver: W530
Regular Rotation: T601F (Intel), T601F (NVidia), Corebooted X230 & T430, X1C 5th gen
Spares: T450, T460s
For fun: 600X w/ 850MHz CPU, 390E

Brad
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Re: W530 Still?

#6 Post by Brad » Tue Apr 27, 2021 5:12 am

If your W530 is running warmer lately try re-pasting.

Lowered my temps considerably.

Not sure of the before temps but now feels much cooler and monitored temps have not exceeded 60c.

Brad
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TPFanatic
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Re: W530 Still?

#7 Post by TPFanatic » Tue Apr 27, 2021 7:52 am

It's not a W-series but I've been contentedly running a T420 since the end of 2019, when my previous Nvidia T430s died of GPU death, I believe I overheated it. :oops: My T420 has QHD IPS, 16GB, and mSATA+SATA drives, I use it for everything, from HD video editing to encoding+burning+ripping optical media. Even eSATA sees use from time to time. USB 3.0 would be nice to speed up transfer speeds with my phone, just haven't bothered to install my Expresscard adapter yet.

Only thing it can't do is modern graphics/gaming. I have an eGPU but my install of Windows doesn't like talking to it. :roll: So it's largely unused as I haven't wound up gaming as much I thought...

I'm a stickler for the 7 row and ThinkLight, and QHD IPS is an incredible and worthwhile upgrade. Think three full-size documents open side-by-side. Looks like T420/30(s) is the end of the road for me.
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
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Re: W530 Still?

#8 Post by olddog » Tue May 04, 2021 11:08 am

I run a W530 at home and a newly acquired W541 at work. Both run a little hot and need re-pasting, which I will do soon, but apart from that they perform flawlessly and there is little to choose between them except for the useful numeric keypad on the latter.
I will only change them when they die.

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Re: W530 Still?

#9 Post by rkawakami » Tue May 04, 2021 1:34 pm

Well, I'll be the old fart in this conversation... :)

After years and years of using A31p and T23 laptops as my go-to systems, I've settled on a group of W520 for my everyday usage. It was the last of the "old style" or "classic" keyboards, which is the main reason I like them. They are running W7-64, i7 quad-core CPUs, FHD displays, have at least 20GB of memory and 500GB spinning platters. They are fine for what I'm doing with them; the hardest they are pushed is when I need to do some video editing or format conversions. As long as I keep them in sleep mode, instead of shutting them down or using hibernate, they are quick to respond. Otherwise, if I have to cold boot them, it takes several minutes before Windows becomes responsive again. None of them get what I would consider overly warm, even when doing video work. I've never taken them apart for cleaning or replacing/upgrading hardware (besides memory) so I'm guessing that the fan and thermal paste are still factory. All of them are eBay graduates. I've never paid list price for a Thinkpad and therefore have never been an original owner.
Brad wrote:(PRO TIP: only keep one or two ThinkPads out at the same time. They are black and wife can't tell the difference)
Kind of hard to fool the wife when my office closet shelves are full of Thinkpads, along with the stash underneath my desk and the three dozen or so systems lined up on the spare bed. I've covered them up with empty boxes and packing material but I don't think it's helping to mask the number of laptops that are taking up space.
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X22 X24 X31 X41 X41T X60 X60s X61 X61s X200 X200s X300 X301 Z60m Z61t Z61p 560 560Z 600 600E 600X T21 T22 T23 T41 T60p T410 T420 T520 W500 W520 R50 A21p A22p A31 A31p
NOTE: All links to PC-Doctor software hosted by me are dead. Files removed 8/28/12 by manufacturer's demand.

firefly6240
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Re: W530 Still?

#10 Post by firefly6240 » Fri May 21, 2021 7:39 pm

I actually just upgraded to a W530 believe it or not.
moved to it from my trusty T410 a few months ago.

I've done most of the upgrades I can think of, put a lot more money into it than I imagine most people would deem worth it.
I realize I easily could have spent the money on a good newer laptop but they really dont make them like this anymore, after a ton of research I got this one very specifically.
It took me a long time to decide to move from my T410 but I think the W530 is where I'll be for a long time to come.

I have the I7 3840QM (this is really the only thing I can think of left to upgrade, but from what I hear its one of the best balanced options for price/mobility/performance, other options favor one area or another, I might do it someday though)
32GB ram
a 1TB Samsung Evo 870 SSD in the main drive bay (with slackware current installed)
an SK Hynix 1TB SSD in the ultrabay (with Windows 10 installed)
and a dogfish 256gb drive in the Msata bay (with freeBSD installed
I have the full HD 1080P screen,
Fingerprint reader.
Custom bootloader
Wireless AC card
backlit keyboard (also have the non backlit, they do feel slightly different)

I dont have the color collaborator
also dont have the smart card reader.

Slackware is my main OS and hands down gets the most use, I use anydesk to remote into my work desktop when working from home since the office uses mostly microsoft.
Windows just gets booted when I want to play newer games.
and freeBSD is mostly just for fun.

Honestly I upgraded for future proofing only, there isnt really much this laptop cant do even today.
it ran circles around the laptop they gave me at work even with the 8GB ram and old 500GB intel SSD it came with.
I cant recommend this workstation enough. I'm a very casual gamer so cant speak to that part so much but it handles everything I've thrown at it from Linux and windows.

Brad
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Re: W530 Still?

#11 Post by Brad » Sat May 22, 2021 6:03 am

That is a nicely configured W530 that has quite a bit of onboard storage.

My W530 has been getting along nicely for several years running W7P on a Samsung Lenovo FRU 512Gb 2.5" SSD.

Haven't needed much more than this one SSD. I am not editing or storing video on board. Just mostly work related storage.

Still happy with this W530 so no changes on the horizon that I can think of.

Oh I have changed the keyboard several times and even the chassis too but all have been W530's.

Over time I have managed to prepare at least one complete spare W530 with almost all brand new parts as a backup and have more than one in several states of repair or you may say disrepair.

I am continued to be amazed that that this ancient a ThinkPad has remained relevant, at least for me, for such a long time.

Let the villagers rejoice! Long live the W530!

Brad
Long Island New York
T43p 2669-Q1U, A22p's UTU A21p HXU
Transnote, 770's 8AU, 600, 701CS, 755CD

firefly6240
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Re: W530 Still?

#12 Post by firefly6240 » Sat May 22, 2021 3:21 pm

wow is replacing the chassis as hard as it looks?
I just took apart my W530 last night to replace the fan and clean all the vents from the inside. (original fan was grinding and off balance, which was how I got it fairly cheap)
when I got this one I noticed a few units on ebay that were really cheap because of chassis damage, I was just curious how hard actually swapping one is.
Brad wrote:
Sat May 22, 2021 6:03 am
That is a nicely configured W530 that has quite a bit of onboard storage.

My W530 has been getting along nicely for several years running W7P on a Samsung Lenovo FRU 512Gb 2.5" SSD.

Haven't needed much more than this one SSD. I am not editing or storing video on board. Just mostly work related storage.

Still happy with this W530 so no changes on the horizon that I can think of.

Oh I have changed the keyboard several times and even the chassis too but all have been W530's.

Over time I have managed to prepare at least one complete spare W530 with almost all brand new parts as a backup and have more than one in several states of repair or you may say disrepair.

I am continued to be amazed that that this ancient a ThinkPad has remained relevant, at least for me, for such a long time.

Let the villagers rejoice! Long live the W530!

Brad

Brad
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Re: W530 Still?

#13 Post by Brad » Sat May 22, 2021 7:41 pm

If you are familiar with a screwdriver and have a little patience it can be accomplished successfully.

Brad
Long Island New York
T43p 2669-Q1U, A22p's UTU A21p HXU
Transnote, 770's 8AU, 600, 701CS, 755CD

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