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T490 vs E490?

T430 and later, plus T530 and later series specific matters only
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GreyGnome
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Joined: Thu Aug 08, 2019 10:30 am
Location: Oak Park, IL

T490 vs E490?

#1 Post by GreyGnome » Thu Aug 08, 2019 10:37 am

Hello,
I am looking to replace my old T430s with a new machine. I was leaning heavily to the T490 but then the E490 caught my eye. It's so much cheaper! I don't really care about the CPU or graphics card- what matters to me are:
* The excellent Thinkpad keyboard (which I should get in the E490, I think).
* 32GB of RAM, at least. Both machines have it.
* A 1920x1080 screen with better quality than my barely-passable T430s screen. I don't care if it's super bright; the brighter settings hurt my eyes anyway. But color, contrast, and reasonable off-axis viewing are important.

If I can get all that in the E490, I don't see the need to pay the Thinkpad premium. Has anyone seen the two machines side-by-side, and especially compared the displays? I'm thinking about the low-power T490 display. Would the IPS panel on the E490 be decent, or does it really suck?

Thanks.
-GreyGnome

MikalE
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Location: Marissa, Illinois

Re: T490 vs E490?

#2 Post by MikalE » Thu Aug 08, 2019 11:56 am

Home use or on-the-go business use?
T500 T9600 2055-BE9
T510 i5 4384-DV7
T510 i7 4349-A64
T520 i7 4242-4UU(CTO)


T520: i7-2760QM(2.40GHz),16GB, 500GB SSD/250GB SSD, 1600x900, 1GB NVIDIA, DVDRW, Smartcard, media card, FPR, Win7 Pro64, XP Pro64 whitelist BIOS, N 6300 AGN, German KB, BT 4.0.

GreyGnome
Posts: 3
Joined: Thu Aug 08, 2019 10:30 am
Location: Oak Park, IL

Re: T490 vs E490?

#3 Post by GreyGnome » Fri Aug 09, 2019 3:59 pm

Home use mostly. I take the laptop on the train every day and write programs, watch educational videos, things like that. No gaming. I run Linux, so I do a little OpenOffice stuff.

I have a few terminals open with old-school green-on-black displays.

MikalE
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Joined: Sun Sep 13, 2015 9:51 pm
Location: Marissa, Illinois

Re: T490 vs E490?

#4 Post by MikalE » Fri Aug 09, 2019 4:42 pm

For on the go business use you will probably wish you had the build quality of the T series rather than the low end E consumer series. The T series is more robust and built better than the E series.

If you're going to leave it on a desktop and use it as that or take it to the living room while watching TV I'd say go for the E series.
T500 T9600 2055-BE9
T510 i5 4384-DV7
T510 i7 4349-A64
T520 i7 4242-4UU(CTO)


T520: i7-2760QM(2.40GHz),16GB, 500GB SSD/250GB SSD, 1600x900, 1GB NVIDIA, DVDRW, Smartcard, media card, FPR, Win7 Pro64, XP Pro64 whitelist BIOS, N 6300 AGN, German KB, BT 4.0.

theterminator93
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Joined: Fri Oct 11, 2013 7:45 pm
Location: North Ridgeville, Ohio, United States

Re: T490 vs E490?

#5 Post by theterminator93 » Fri Aug 09, 2019 11:36 pm

E series aren't really ThinkPads in my book - despite the product branding. They are a consumer market product that Lenovo released as the "Edge" series a number of years ago, as a product line under the L/SL series (the equivalent to the old R series). The L series is a pretty big step up in terms of quality over the E series, and the T series is yet another step up from the L series (although IMO the difference between E and L is much more apparent than L and T).

Essentially, E series = consumer product; L series = entry level business product; T series = mainstream business product.

When I took over a handful of client accounts I was having my teams buying E series (E550, E560, E570...) but we were seeing lots of "stupid" quality issues. E.g. video and video output issues on an entire series. So we've been deploying L and T series now - T/L480 and T/L490s so far mostly. Granted we haven't had as many out there for as long as the Es, but no such issues have cropped up so far.

The L series has a price break of usually a couple hundred bucks over a similarly configured T series. The E is usually another couple hundred less than the L. Considering my perceived quality steppings, the L series is a pretty good bang for the buck. I say skip E series and focus on L or T.

The el cheapo HD+ TN screens are just that... basic. If you spend a lot of time in front of it, you'll appreciate having the better screen - truly. If it was me and I could afford a T series but only with the basic screen option, or an L series with an IPS FHD... I'd get the L series.
Daily: T25 | W520 i7-2860QM·Quadro 2000m·IPS FHD | T420 i7·NVS·IPS FHD | X220 i7·IPS FHD | T601F T9900·NVS·LED UXGA
Wife's: T61p T9500·FX570m·WUXGA | X220T i7-2640M
Others: T61p·61·43·42p|X41T·24·23·22|G41|A31p·22m|i1200|TransNote|380D|365XD|701C|755C|760EL

w0qj
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Joined: Fri Jun 11, 2004 9:53 pm
Location: Hong Kong

Re: T490 vs E490?

#6 Post by w0qj » Sat Aug 10, 2019 9:55 am

Hey theterminator93, well said!

And congrads on your #1000th posting!!
Daily Driver: X1 Extreme 1st Gen (X1E1): i7 | 16GB | 1TB | IPS
Current Thinkpads: X1E1 | X1C4 | X1C3 | X250 | X230 | T410
Retired Thinkpads: T42 | 560 (circa 1996)
~~IBM Thinkpad era computer bag !

GreyGnome
Posts: 3
Joined: Thu Aug 08, 2019 10:30 am
Location: Oak Park, IL

Re: T490 vs E490?

#7 Post by GreyGnome » Thu Aug 15, 2019 9:19 pm

Thanks for the replies! They were helpful.

What do you think of the Yoga 730? I saw one at Best Buy today and it seemed really solid, with a nice 15" screen and a good keyboard feel.

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