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Newer thinkpads, can one learn to cope with it?

W530/W540/W550 series specific matters only
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nedenom
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Newer thinkpads, can one learn to cope with it?

#1 Post by nedenom » Wed Jul 20, 2016 7:56 am

So, I'm coming from a T500 which I've had for many years and loving it, but even upgraded to the max the specs have become too outdated and I just bought myself a P50 to step it up, which I received two days ago. And I am so disappointed, not with the specs but with the usability of it. I know this might sound like a rant but I really want to hear if you experienced the same and if you learned to cope with the newer Thinkpads and maybe even start to like it after a while.

My main issues are:

* The display: my old T500 display was so smooth and I could work hours and hours in front of it and not go tired in the eyes. But with this new P50 display, the eye strain is really terrible and even when taking regular breaks I suffer from headaches and nausea after a couple days usage. Not sure if this will go away after getting used to it.

* The dreaded numpad, which offsets the normal keyboard from the center: So I moved all my applications to the far left side of the screen to be positioned in the center of me. So effectivly I can only use about 3/4 of the working area. But another consequence is that there is too little space on the left to rest my palm on, and it wants to slide of the edge all the time.

* The touch pad: I like to vary between using the track point and the touch pad, depending on what I do, so I want to keep it enabled. But the trouble is that it's simply to large, so when I'm typing the palms tend to touch the pad, causing the mouse cursor to jitter all over the place and occasionally do random mouse clicks and disturbing my typing. And especially, when I click the upper buttons when using the track point, my palm always touches the pad, making the mouse pointer jump up as I try to click something.

I could of course get a separate screen and keyboard, but I need to be mobile with it and use the built-in interfaces and that's kinda of the point of buying a laptop isn't it?

Yes, it was kind of a rant, but can any of you bring me any hope? As an alternative I do consider returning it or sell it, and maybe get a refurbished T530 or something, which at least doesn't have this stupid center offset numpad keyboard, no so sure about the display though.

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Re: Newer thinkpads, can one learn to cope with it?

#2 Post by RealBlackStuff » Wed Jul 20, 2016 8:49 am

Can't give you any encouraging, other than return it for a full refund ASAP.
Before you buy your next laptop, read up about it on forums like ours and Lenovo's.
You'd be surprised at the slew of negative posts about the P50.
Look for a used W530 with FHD non-touch screen if you need loads of RAM.

Thanks to some ingenious forum members, you can even put a classic keyboard (as in X220/T420/T520/W520) on the W530.
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Re: Newer thinkpads, can one learn to cope with it?

#3 Post by MikalE » Wed Jul 20, 2016 12:09 pm

Do they fit without modification?
T500 T9600 2055-BE9
T510 i5 4384-DV7
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Re: Newer thinkpads, can one learn to cope with it?

#4 Post by RealBlackStuff » Wed Jul 20, 2016 1:22 pm


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Re: Newer thinkpads, can one learn to cope with it?

#5 Post by Cigarguy » Wed Jul 20, 2016 6:23 pm

There's a reason I refuse to buy any Thinkpads beyond the T420/520 Sandbridge eras. The screen on those were pretty bad those compared to my T500. I could never get used to the quality and 16:9 format of my T420 so I gave it away. My favourite overall and daily beater is the T/X60 series.

For daily laptop use I don't need a lot of power. Durability, good ergonomics and a good screen is more important. I have 2 desktops built with the latest Intel processors, 64 GB ram, some nice 27" monitors, etc for serious computing. Best of all the desktops each have an IBM Model M keyboard attached to them.

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Re: Newer thinkpads, can one learn to cope with it?

#6 Post by hhhd1 » Wed Jul 20, 2016 6:59 pm

RealBlackStuff wrote:Look for a used W530 with FHD non-touch screen if you need loads of RAM.
+1

The FHD on the W530/T530 have some eye straining issues, which are easily resolved via either color calibration, or just lowering the saturation.

Performance wise, the quadcores used in the *30 generation, or even the *20 are still quite good and not that far off when compared to currently available in newer laptops.
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Re: Newer thinkpads, can one learn to cope with it?

#7 Post by nedenom » Thu Jul 21, 2016 4:36 am

Well, I am back at my T500 again to give my eyes a little break, because the eye strain is killing me. I am not sure what the problem is with the display on the new P50 (FHD display). Is it only psychological, just something to get used to, bad calibration or is it really something about the quality of the display? I know my eyes are quite sensitive, especially to flicker, but I read that the P50 FHD shouldn't have any PWM issues.

What about the T/W520 or 530, are their displays more like the T500 or more like the P50? I know I have to give up the 16:10 aspect ratio anyway.

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Re: Newer thinkpads, can one learn to cope with it?

#8 Post by RealBlackStuff » Thu Jul 21, 2016 8:07 am

Before you make your final decision, read the Display section here: http://www.notebookcheck.net/Lenovo-Thi ... 713.0.html
Then either calibrate your P50 screen, or return it for a refund and go buy from the competition.
In that case, hurry before they charge restocking fees...

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Re: Newer thinkpads, can one learn to cope with it?

#9 Post by pianowizard » Thu Jul 21, 2016 9:49 am

nedenom wrote:Well, I am back at my T500 again to give my eyes a little break, because the eye strain is killing me. I am not sure what the problem is with the display on the new P50 (FHD display).
What is the resolution of the T500? I suspect that things just look too small on the P50's FHD. These are the pixel densities of the resolutions available to the T500:

15.4" 1280x800 = 98.02 DPI
15.4" 1680x1050 = 128.65 DPI
15.4" 1920x1200 = 147.02 DPI

15.6" 1920x1080 on the P50 gives you 141.21 DPI. Of course, if your T500 is 1920x1200, then my hypothesis would be incorrect.
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Re: Newer thinkpads, can one learn to cope with it?

#10 Post by Dekks » Thu Jul 21, 2016 10:58 am

nedenom wrote:So, I'm coming from a T500 which I've had for many years and loving it, but even upgraded to the max the specs have become too outdated and I just bought myself a P50 to step it up, which I received two days ago. And I am so disappointed, not with the specs but with the usability of it. I know this might sound like a rant but I really want to hear if you experienced the same and if you learned to cope with the newer Thinkpads and maybe even start to like it after a while.
Is the BIOS at latest level?
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Re: Newer thinkpads, can one learn to cope with it?

#11 Post by nedenom » Thu Jul 21, 2016 12:33 pm

RealBlackStuff wrote: Before you make your final decision, read the Display section here: http://www.notebookcheck.net/Lenovo-Thi ... 713.0.html
Then either calibrate your P50 screen, or return it for a refund and go buy from the competition.
In that case, hurry before they charge restocking fees...
I ordered it without the color sensor so I don't know how to calibrate, I don't care that much about good color reproduction either as is usually the focus, I just need good eye comfort. I installed a little app (redshift) to change the color temperature to 5500K, which makes the display a little less phosphorus and a tad better. I still have 10 days left to decide... Have been looking at second hand W520 as an alternative, but I read about PWM issues on that one?

pianowizard wrote: What is the resolution of the T500? I suspect that things just look too small on the P50's FHD.
My current resolution is 1680x1050 (which I think is perfect). Yes, that might very well by at least part of the problem, I do find it a bit too small but maybe I can get used to it. I did try to zoom in on the browser for a while, without any noticeable improvement, but I guess I need to test over longer time. Just waiting for the pain behind by eyes to go away first...
Dekks wrote:Is the BIOS at latest level?
Haven't checked yet... is it likely to fix anything like this?

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Re: Newer thinkpads, can one learn to cope with it?

#12 Post by ajkula66 » Thu Jul 21, 2016 8:32 pm

nedenom wrote: Haven't checked yet... is it likely to fix anything like this?
No.
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Re: Newer thinkpads, can one learn to cope with it?

#13 Post by hhhd1 » Fri Jul 22, 2016 4:47 am

As a last try for the P50, try to reduce color saturation significantly, see if it helps or not.
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Re: Newer thinkpads, can one learn to cope with it?

#14 Post by nedenom » Fri Jul 22, 2016 11:03 am

Changing the color temperature to 5500K, brightness about 40%, does seem to have helped a lot with the eye strain. Switching back now to the default setting (6400K), it's like staring close up into an industrial fluorescent lamp even at 40% brightness, no wonder I got snow blind... The 1920x1080 resolution on a 15.6" is still a bit small for me though, but maybe I can get used to it - or start fiddling with zoom and font sizes all over the place. Probably a 17" inch would have been better for me with this resolution, but unfortunately it brings me out of my budget or I'd have to sacrifice something else, plus a 17" is maybe a bit large to drag around.

Regarding the touch pad issues,I am on Ubuntu, but supposedly the Windows driver added some hack to avoid registering the palms touching when typing, does anyone have this problem on Windows?

I'll give it a few more days until I decide whether to keep it or not. Still interesting in hearing how people are "coping" with these machines

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Re: Newer thinkpads, can one learn to cope with it?

#15 Post by RealBlackStuff » Fri Jul 22, 2016 11:26 am

Just do a Google with: Lenovo P50 problems
'Nuff said.

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Re: Newer thinkpads, can one learn to cope with it?

#16 Post by Tim-ANC » Fri Aug 26, 2016 10:08 am

Check your settings on the on the touch pad. My W530 has a Palmcheck setting to reduce pointer movement by incidental palm contact. Probably like you, I never use a mouse.
Tim

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