Here is everything you ever wanted to know about the Lenovo ThinkPad. Which model is the best for you? Find out with this definitive guide!
Searching for a new computer can be such a pain in the rear, especially when you need to use one for work. Recently, I dropped my laptop as I was walking up a flight of stairs.
It tumbled down the stairs and hit each one on the way down. I watched, horrified, as my only work computer was destroyed. I dreaded the thought of comparing computers, but then my friend told me about the Lenovo Thinkpad.
The Lenovo Thinkpad is a line of laptops and tablets that make working and playing online easy. The best part is they have a model for everyone!
How We Reviewed
In writing this review, a thorough check of each Lenovo ThinkPad model was done, including the product specifications and marketing copy of each series model, reviews left by customers on the Lenovo ThinkPad website, and the opinions of other reviewers.
Price Range of Lenovo Products
Prices for the Lenovo ThinkPad models range widely. Some models sell for less than $400 to more than $1,700. Price differences are due in part to the types of processors used, with Celeron processors being more affordable while the latest Pentium i7 processor brings the prices up.
Those laptops that are meant to withstand anything from extreme heat to freezing temperatures are also pricier.
Further, laptops with higher specs, more storage, and the Thunderbolt support are more expensive. Additionally, the Yoga versions are similarly costlier than the traditional laptop forms. These 2-in-1 devices have prices starting at $479.00 to $2,000.
Lenovo's Top Products
Here are some of Lenovo's top products.
Lenovo 14" ThinkPad X1 Yoga 3rd Gen Touchscreen LCD 2 in 1 Ultrabook...
Lenovo has completely redesigned the ThinkPad X1 and came up with a 13-inch tablet that uses Windows 10. The ThinkPad X1 is the company's answer to Microsoft's Surface Pro. With its i5 or i7 processor, it has the speed and performance that is equal to the Surface Pro.
The ThinkPad X1 works with the ThinkPad Pen Pro, allowing you to use the device as a canvas for your artworks and as a digital notepad for your doodles. It also comes with a detachable keyboard that works just as well as laptop keyboards.
The ThinkPad X1 has two Thunderbolt 3 ports, which provides for data transfer speeds of up to 40 Gbps, connection for two Ultra HD displays, and audio and video outputs. With support for HDMI 2.0 and 10GbE networking, it gets an overall rating of 4.0 out of 5.0 stars on Lenovo's online store.
The third iteration of the ThinkPad X1 does suffer from two significant weaknesses. First is its short battery life, giving you a maximum of only 9.5 hours before needing to recharge. That's okay for a laptop but not for a tablet.
Furthermore, it is quite expensive: the third generation ThinkPad X1 sells for between $1,459 and $1,777.
The L-Series gives you a somewhat affordable laptop that allows you to be productive without busting the bank. Depending on the model you choose, starting prices for the L-Series costs between $731 to $732.
It comes with three screen sizes: 13.3 inches, 14.0 inches, and 15.6 inches. Because these are entry-level laptops, the L-Series uses the least powerful Intel processors: Celeron, Core i3, and i5. It runs on Windows 10.
When it comes to the display, there are L-series laptops that have a lower screen resolution of 1366 pixels by 768 pixels. If you want something with better screen quality, you can opt for the 1920 pixel by 1080 pixel screens. You can also choose from two memory options: 4 GB or 8 GB. And you can choose between a 32 GB solid state or 500 GB storage.
Ratings for the L-Series from the company's online store:
For simple business workloads, you cannot go wrong with the Lenovo ThinkPad L-Series. On top of solid performance, it also gives you a longer lasting battery. However, if you don't like old-looking laptops, you will be disappointed to learn that these come in either black or silver colors.
The ThinkPad 11E is made for students to be able to carry it around in their backpacks. Designed to be lightweight, the 11E Series weigh as little as less than 3 pounds. That is roughly like lugging around an apple pie or a thick hardbound novel. The ThinkPad 11E is also very handy, measuring 11.81 inches by 8.27 inches, or around the size of a letter-sized bond paper.
Earlier versions have the Google Chrome OS, but the series' fifth-generation devices now have Windows 10 as the operating system. Even with their small dimensions, these laptops and Chromebooks have an 11.6-inch 768-pixel display. Plus, their batteries can give you up to 12 hours of usage.
The 11E is also very rugged and durable. Because it is meant to be carried around with you, it has rubber bumpers as well as strengthened hinges and ports. It can also survive getting dropped from three feet.
Even so, Lenovo has kept the prices low, with starting prices ranging from $518 to $519. Moreover, the Lenovo Thinkpad 11E series devices have gotten very high ratings from customers on the Lenovo online store:
Nobody could deny just how rugged the 11E series is. If you are the type that brings his or her laptop everywhere, then this should be a good choice for you. However, you might need to pay more for a better processor as the lower-priced 11E models have a slower Celeron or an N500 processor.
Imagine this: the ThinkPad X has gone through several durability tests and quality checks, including 12 military-grade certifications.
All of these certify that the X Series devices can handle desert storms, freezing temperatures, and even the inevitable drops. Unless you deliberately slam your Lenovo ThinkPad X1 against the wall or run over it with a truck, it would probably stay with you for years. Lenovo even released a stress test video showing that the X Series can survive fire, ice, dust, and drops.
It is fun to watch, but we strongly recommend not trying it at home! Certainly not when these devices have price tags starting at $1,850 to more than $1,851 for the third-generation X1 Yoga.
The X Series is also very portable, just an inch bigger than the 11E series. The biggest X series measures 13.11 inches by 9.01 inches. Aside from its durability, the X series delivers top performance when you fit it with a Pentium i7 with vPro processor.
These devices have at least 1080p true HD, and some of them come with a 14-inch 1440p screen. Battery juice lasts up to 15 hours. You would be hard-pressed to find something to complain about this gem. Maybe except for the fact that with its high price, the audio and the Web camera are somewhat mediocre.
Customers really like the computer, leaving generally positive reviews and ratings for X Series devices:
Critics and customers have given the X Series their sea of approval, making it one of the best that Lenovo has to offer.
The Lenovo ThinkPad E Series is yet another line of affordable laptops. With prices ranging from $890 to $891, there is nothing that the E Series sacrifices. The business laptop has top-notch and built-in security technologies and 1080p HD resolution for the monitor. You can also opt for fast processors such as the Intel i5 or the Ryzen 7.
The E Series models do get high ratings from Lenovo customers:
It could, however, improve by having a battery that lasts longer than the current 9 to 13 hours of running time. What's more, the E Series laptops also have a basic Webcam that delivers only 720p. It might be a little too noisy, and it is weightier than other ThinkPad devices, too.
The ThinkPad A Series distinguishes itself from all other ThinkPad lines because it features an AMD processor. All laptops in this series boast of top-notch manageability and security features, as well as a wallet-friendly price.
Starting prices for the ThinkPad A Series laptops range from $820 to $821. The Series also delivers a longer battery life, with the A275 and the A475 giving you more than 15 hours of battery juice.
You have the option to use AMD Pro A12 as your processor and get a 1080p screen.
If you are going to use your laptop for work, then the Lenovo ThinkPad A Series is your best bet.
However, some complaints include the fact that these laptops can sometimes be slow. That downside, however, is trumped by the build quality, battery life, and display.
Lenovo ThinkPad P71 17.3'' Mobile Workstation Laptop (Intel i7 Quad...
If you prefer laptops with the best and fastest performance more than anything else, then you should get one of the laptops under the ThinkPad P Series.
The ThinkPad P Series has the speediest processing and graphics out of all ThinkPad devices. Curious to see how the different models stack up with each other? Here are their ratings from customers on the Lenovo online store.
The ThinkPad P Series is perfect for those workloads that require a lot of power. Need to create a graphic on Adobe Photoshop? Or create a CAD mockup of your house? These laptops are up for the job!
They can even help you create virtual reality content or high-fidelity audio files.
Pricing for the P Series ranges from $2,620 to $2,621. That might seem too much for a laptop, but if you consider that you get a whole range of superlatives with the
ThinkPad P Series, you will see that the price is warranted. This price gives you a big display measuring either 15.6 inches or 17.3 inches. You also get up to 128 GB DDR4 memory and 6 TB of storage.
ThinkPad T Series
If you need to get the best of what Lenovo has to offer, then you should buy its flagship laptops under the ThinkPad T Series. The T Series has either a 14 inch or 15.6-inch screen and mostly delivers high-definition display resolution. You can get anywhere from 16 GB to 32 GB of memory and up to 30.3 hours of battery life. Prices for the ThinkPad T Series can cost between $767 and $1,952.
These laptops are fast! Load times and bootups take only a few seconds. The T Series is also very durable, passing 12 military-grade requirements, and getting at least 200 quality certifications. It works in any condition and can survive any accident from spilling water over the keyboard, to below freezing temperatures, and even short drops.
The flagship models got some of the highest ratings overall among all Lenovo ThinkPad Series:
These ratings are not surprising, with the T Series models having some of the best features and technologies Lenovo has to offer, along with the durability and ruggedness you see on other series.
What's more, the T Series models are the result of consumer feedback, featuring the tweaks and refinements that Lenovo customers wanted over the course of 25 years.
ThinkPad 13 Chromebook
Apart from all these laptops, Lenovo also has the ThinkPad 13 Chromebook. The Chromebook allows you to be more productive with an Intel Celeron, i3, or i5 processor on board.
What you would love about the ThinkPad 13 Chromebook is the very responsive keyboard that is also comfortable to type on. Its battery life lasts for your entire workday, and it has 180-degree hinges that allow you to adjust the 13.3-inch FHD screen in any angle you want.
However, it does not use Windows as its operating system, so you have fewer apps that you can access. This Chromebook has a rating of 4.5 out of 5.0 stars on the Lenovo online store.
What You Can Expect from Lenovo ThinkPad Devices
Different Lenovo ThinkPad devices have different specifications and even different designs. Still, there are several characteristics that buyers can expect when buying a ThinkPad.
A range of reliable processors
Depending on what device you choose, you can get either an Intel or an AMD processor. If you only use your laptop for study or to work on Microsoft Word documents, you can save more by choosing one with an Intel Celeron processor. It may not deliver a lot of power, but it will cut down the price significantly. Of course, if you need things to zip along or if you have heavy workloads, you can always choose the latest Pentium processors. Aside from Intel, Lenovo also uses AMD processors for fast and snappy performance.
A variety of screen sizes
Lenovo also gives you a choice when it comes to screen size. You can get portable devices with an 11-inch screen, or you can choose to have one with a 15-inch display so that you can see more in one screen. Lenovo takes pride in giving you HD display resolutions, starting at 720 pixels. Most of these have 1080p HD resolutions, with a few having support for HDR.
Four modes of operation
Lenovo ThinkPad devices allow you to interact with it in four different ways. You can go the traditional route and type in everything using the keypad, or you can plug in a mouse. There are also devices that feature a touchscreen display, and there are those that support the ThinkPad Pen Pro, both allowing you to write things directly on the screen instead of typing! For those devices with a touch display, you will appreciate that they are multi-touch and very responsive.
Most ThinkPad devices have decent battery life, which can last over the course of a typical workday. Need more battery juice? You can get the T Series with its dual batteries that last for more than 24 hours!
Every ThinkPad series has a Yoga version. Yoga branded devices have a durable 360-degree hinge, allowing you to fold the ThinkPad unto itself, turning your laptop into a tablet.
Some Lenovo ThinkPad models feature Thunderbolt port support. Thunderbolt port can take the place of six different ports and can deliver faster file transfers than a USB port. Thunderbolt helps you connect more devices to your ThinkPad without making your device unnecessarily bulky.
Secure right out of the box
Lenovo ThinkPad uses a wide range of security technologies that protect your files. As such, the Lenovo ThinkPad is ideal for work because if somebody steals your laptop, they would have difficulty accessing anything on it. Some of these security technologies are:
- Discrete Trusted Platform Module 2.0
- Kensington lock slot
- Fast Identity Online authentication
- ThinkShutter camera cover
- Biometrics security
Lenovo ThinkPad has a range of laptops and tablets that give you anything you need and want. You can choose one that is perfect for you, whether you are planning to use it for your business, for school, or for something that requires more computer power.
You will also love how these devices incorporate the latest technologies, such as support for Thunderbolt ports, touch displays, and the latest processors for speedy performance.