Senin, 31 Mei 2010
It wasn’t the red one I was hoping to touch. The loaned unit had a black semi-glossy top, with a ThinkPad logo conspicuously placed on the lower right corner.
When you close it and carry it around, people have to turn their heads upside down to read it. The red dot will flash brightly if the notebook has been powered up and blink when the top is closed or it is in the suspend mode.
The ThinkPad Edge Series broke several other ThinkPad’s traditional design elements. For example, this new ThinkPad had slightly rounded corners instead of the sharp 90 degree-edges we have become accustomed to.
So, what’s the lowdown on technical specs? Well, my demo unit had a 13.3-inch screen, but bigger models come with 14- and 15-inch screens. The keyboard was the more current style reminiscent of Apple’s MacBooks.
Its brain? An Intel Core 2 Duo U7300 running at 1.3 GHz, with 2 GB of supplied RAM. The 5400 RPM Hitachi hard disk has a capacity of 250 GB.
Like the ThinkPads before it, it combines TrackPoint and touchpad. The multitouch touchpad allows users to control different things with more than one finger on it.
All the four edges of the ThinkPad Edge 13’s top and bottom were wrapped with aluminum. The ports were nicely distributed on the left and right sides. There were three USB ports — one powered, a VGA-out for connection to a projector, an HDMI port and a five-in-one card reader. The stereo speakers were underneath the palmrest.
There was also one audio port for both the headphone and the microphone, an integrated webcam. The ThinkPad came with the Windows 7 Professional operating system, including Skype.
What’s good about The Edge? It has clearly inherited the sturdy build typical of ThinkPads. That includes the hinges. The Windows Performance Index is 3.4, good enough for everyday tasks as long as you do not include gaming.
Lenovo claims the battery will last around seven hours, but I think it is safe enough to expect it to last five hours, which is also decent enough for today’s standard.
How much will it set you back? US$700. You can opt for the base model, which runs on AMD processors. The prices start at around $540, although for that low price you will also have to sacrifice on hard disk capacity and battery size. The screen is a HD Glare. I liked the display, especially after I set the font size to medium. Colors were vibrant, not soft as the ThinkPads I have looked at in the past.
What were the downsides? First, the Edge Series is aimed at small and medium business users. In this respect, it will be hard for us to choose between the Edge and the commercial line of Lenovo IdeaPad. Personal users are also the target of this new ThinkPad line, but they may be more attracted to sleeker models from other vendors. Keep in mind this notebook runs on an ultra low voltage (ULV) processor, and there are a plethora of competitors out there with similar computing power, including ASUS UL80VT.
The keyboard is good enough, although I still prefer the traditional ThinkPad keyboard. I may like it more as I use it more.
The F-key row is placed rightly on top of the keyboard, but I miss the enlarged Esc key that Lenovo introduced not very long ago in the other ThinkPad models such as the T400s.
The arrow keys could be made larger and placed a bit farther down to make navigation easier. Unfortunately, this model does not have a backlit keyboard, and, unlike the ThinkPads before it, there is no ThinkLight. As the result, typing in the dark is a challenge.
On the positive side, the white characters on top of the keycaps truly stand out on a black surface.
This notebook is categorized as a thin and light. Honestly, it does not really impress me as a true thin and light machine.
Nonetheless, at slightly more than 1.5 kilograms, it still feels OK to lug it around in airport terminals.
There is no integrated DVD-drive for ThinkPad Edge 13, so you’ll have to invest in an external optical drive, although one is included in the 14 and 15 models.
What do I think of the Edge 13? Despite the different look, Lenovo has done a good job to ensure that a ThinkPad is still a ThinkPad. It is definitely not a bad choice if you want a solid notebook with some ThinkPad heritage, and it is still my recommendation for your consideration.
All the four edges of the ThinkPad Edge 13’s top and bottom were wrapped with aluminum. The ports were nicely distributed on the left and right sides.