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Thinkpad X300 Specs Leaked 372

Posted by Zonk
from the little-tiny-thinker dept.
Kyokushi writes "Gizmodo reports that some specifications of a new ultralight Lenovo X300 have been leaked. 'It appears that Lenovo have themselves a new ultralight X300 series Thinkpad — and outside of the price and release date, we have all of the specs that you need to know. At a glance, some of the major features include: a 13.3-inch LED backlit 1440X900 screen, an ultralight 2.5 pound form factor, and Intel Merom Santa Rosa Dual Core CPU (2.0 Ghz / 880 Mhz ), a 64 GB SSD, up to 4GB of DDR2 PC2-5300 memory, and 4 hours of battery life.' If this is true, then Lenovo looks to have some heavy competition for the Macbook Air." Update: 01/20 22:55 GMT by S : Corrected Gizmondo->Gizmodo.
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Thinkpad X300 Specs Leaked

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  • Light? (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Sunday January 20, 2008 @02:26PM (#22118746)
    But does it run OS X?
  • by Jim Hall (2985) on Sunday January 20, 2008 @02:29PM (#22118774) Homepage

    This sounds really interesting, but I'm waiting to hear more about video and wireless card. Thinkpads have been very good for me in running Linux, but Linux on laptops these days often comes down to the video card, modem, and the wireless card. Modems are usually winmodems, which are hard to support - but I haven't used a modem in years. Anyone have other details to point to?

  • by ScrewMaster (602015) on Sunday January 20, 2008 @02:33PM (#22118812)
    Apple also has OSX, and Lenovo has Windows. The difference in operating systems is more than branding (I don't own a Mac, but let's face it, Microsoft is still playing catch-up.)
  • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday January 20, 2008 @02:36PM (#22118836)
    Yeah, someday Microsoft may hope to sell more copies of their software than Apple does. Catch up indeed.
  • FunctionForm (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Tainek (912325) * on Sunday January 20, 2008 @02:37PM (#22118844)
    I still cannot understand the rabid obsession with thinness the most people have, the two most importent things for me are weight and battery life, the laptops thickness is its least problomatic dimension. i would rather have this over the Air, this should also be tougher than the Air, which cannot be too tough. This also has 4G Ram, which is a must for any media work. The Air is more of a fashion accessory than a serious laptop IMO
  • by drtsystems (775462) on Sunday January 20, 2008 @02:41PM (#22118878)
    Why do all thinkpads look like they are from 1995? I know they are targeting businesses, and are great laptop's, but seriously, that laptop looks the same as my 300mhz Pentium 2 thinkpad
  • by ScrewMaster (602015) on Sunday January 20, 2008 @02:46PM (#22118930)
    Yes, but we aren't talking about the relative financial success here: we're talking about the usability and sophistication of the product itself. And there Microsoft is way behind. Make no mistake ... I don't like Apple, I don't like Jobs, and it's unlikely I'll ever own an Apple product again (the last one was an Apple ][.) So I'm not defending Apple Computer, per se, but as a Windows programmer I'm more than familiar with the shortcomings of that particular OS.

    Catch up, indeed.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday January 20, 2008 @02:47PM (#22118934)
    Spoken like a true fanboy. When all else fails, pull out the Market Share card. I'll use it too.

    Hey, everybody, the Ford Escort is higher quality car than a Porsche Carrera GT. Want proof? There are more Escorts on the road!
  • Target Market (Score:3, Insightful)

    by konohitowa (220547) on Sunday January 20, 2008 @02:48PM (#22118946) Journal
    It's only competition for the Airbook (yes - I know it's a "MacBook Air") if the intent of the Airbook was to lure droves of Windows users. As to the idea that it was "leaked" - please - this was nothing more than a press release in the guise of a leak. It was stunningly reminiscent of the Windows "yeah - we've got that too - next week! - so don't go anywhere" tactic.
  • by phoxix (161744) on Sunday January 20, 2008 @02:57PM (#22119024)
    Why do all thinkpads look like they are from 1995? I know they are targeting businesses, and are great laptop's, but seriously, that laptop looks the same as my 300mhz Pentium 2 thinkpad

    Ugly?

    Some of us think the black boxy design is incredibly sexy. The design behind the Thinkpad is based of the elegant design of the Japanese Bento Box [quickspice.com]. One of think Thinkpads is even on permanent display at New York Museum of Modern Art!

    The day these machines stop being black and boxy is the day many of us stop buying them.

  • by eMartin (210973) on Sunday January 20, 2008 @03:05PM (#22119108)
    I agree, but one thing i don't like is the cluttered keyboard.

    My Macbook Pro's keyboard does all that I need in both OS X and Windows, and doesn't have all of the extra keys and extra writing on them that the Thinpads do.
  • by asc99c (938635) on Sunday January 20, 2008 @03:09PM (#22119158) Homepage
    Lenovo do have some nicer looking laptops with glossy coatings everywhere. One thing I've noticed though, is that the Lenovo / IBM look is a very durable look. The nearly black, matte mottled surface doesn't show fingerprints, scratches or grime and the plastic is the same colour underneath the surface.

    My laptop is about a year old and only travels occasionally. It looks great except for all the scratches, discolouration, chips etc. Unless you always store your laptop in a padded laptop bag, in a separate compartment from the power adaptor and other accessories it will only stay pretty a few months.

    You can just throw a Lenovo in the boot every day and a couple years later it will come out looking the same - see your comment above :)
  • by markdavis (642305) on Sunday January 20, 2008 @03:27PM (#22119318)
    Looks like a fantastic machine, could compete very well with the Sony TX ultra-small, full-powered laptops (models I have used for several years). The only thing obviously missing is the option to buy it with no OS and/or with Linux. Before someone cries about "Linux isn't ready" or "Linux isn't mainstream", I would stress the word *OPTION*. Let consumers decide what they want, if it means no OS, so be it... Lenovo doesn't HAVE to offer Linux support, although that would be even more courageous.

    MS-Windows can be preinstalled but licensed separately, meaning there only has to be a single packaging, model, inventory, etc. They could even choose a free, redistributable Linux distro and install that too and the user can have a working machine in minutes, even if they opt to not spend money on Vista. Initialization of the machine can automatically remove the space consumed by either, based on the user's choice.

    I kinda doubt Microsoft would allow such competition, though... but it seems a reasonable objective to combat such restrictions based on an anti-trust lawsuit.
  • Re:FunctionForm (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Phat_Tony (661117) on Sunday January 20, 2008 @03:30PM (#22119342)
    I agree that I don't understand the super obsession with size (size doesn't matter, right?) but clearly to some people it does. I guess that, as a luxury product, it's just cool and sexy to have something really sleek and thin.

    To me, the Thinkpad looks like a better laptop than the Macbook Air, because it's got an optical drive, three USB ports instead of one, built-in ethernet, and a faster processor. But why even compare these two laptops, instead of comparing a Macbook or Macbook Pro to whatever model of competing Thinkpads there are, unless size is one of your primary criteria? If size wasn't a primary consideration, you shouldn't be shopping for or comparing either of these two laptops, because you'd get more laptop for your money in something that isn't aimed specifically at being tiny.

    And for those for whom it's all about size, the Apple's graduated to a different league than this Thinkpad. They're about the same footprint, but the Air tapers from .16" to .76", where the Thinkpad tapers from .73" to .92". The Air's thickest part is almost as thin as the Thinkpad's thinnest part. Assuming they're both 9" deep and that the cross-sectional area of these laptops were right trapezoids, which they're not quite, the Macbook's cross sectional area is 4.14 square inches, and the Thinkpad's is 7.43. It's a big difference.

    Again, it's a difference that I, and probably most people on Slashdot don't really care about, but apparently some people do, and as I said, why compare ultra-slim notebooks at all if you aren't going to give them points for how ultra-slim they are? If there weren't a lot of people in the US willing to pay a thousand or more dollars extra for something slightly slimmer, Dynamism [dynamism.com] wouldn't have been around for all these years.

    I think the lack of ports on the Air are a huge drawback, but I think it's Apple's attempt to start dragging us into a wireless future, and it's a future I don't think technology's ready for now, but will be in a few years. Once there's a decent wireless peripheral interface with broad support (wireless USB or whatever), and there's wireless charging, and maybe some new batteries that last much longer and last for many more recharging cycles, they can just make 0-port hermetically sealed laptops. That would be a cool future. I'd also want my Wi-Fi integrated such that it's functional at the BIOS level, so one could do OS upgrades and netboot and emergency recovery over WIFI. Apple's trying to nudge us this way, and so to them it's a "feature" that they took nearly all the ports off the computer, although it's a feature that would currently make my world a much more difficult one.

    This new Thinkpad isn't trying to be visionary, and it isn't radically thinner. It's just the regular old incremental improvement, not much different in magnitude from the past 10 generations of thin Thinkpads in how much different it is from its predecessors. While I personally prefer its specs over the Air's, I prefer nearly any new Laptop's specs over the Air's, and I'm surprised people consider it news, because it looks to me like the slightly smaller, slightly faster future we're all used to on notebook revisions, while the Air was a much smaller, intentionally low-on-ports different vision of the suture that is sort of newsworthy.
  • by setirw (854029) on Sunday January 20, 2008 @03:31PM (#22119352) Homepage
    I'm personally not a fan of ultraportable laptops with the footprints of ordinary laptops. If a laptop is going to be minimalistic, its manufacturer ought to go all the way. A subnotebook will never replicate the functionality of a typical 14" computer, so it's pointless to give it the footprint of one. I'd much rather see a diminished footprint than a minuscule thickness. I would personally prefer an updated version of my Thinkpad S30 [nifty.com] than this MacBook Air competitor.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday January 20, 2008 @03:53PM (#22119542)
    ...that's what I call it. Apple is into "cosmetic computing", which isn't actually about computing at all. It's about being able to sell someone something for little to nothing of actual design cost just by making the "thing" look more eye appealing. Steve Jobs is not into what computer science geeks are about, he's into the somewhat lucrative market of art. Steve has managed to move Apple into the upper class. He's not selling to coach fliers. He wants his products to be used by people who drink wine with their dinners, while discussing the paintings of the art scene and Prada.

    I've also noticed that a lot of what Apple does now is "output only". Many of Apples latest products are all about getting you to buy media, not create it. For example, the Apple iPod line could very well have a built in stereo A/D converter for high-end audio, like the Roland EDIROL R-09 recorder, but nooo, that would be "enabling" the customer, which we just can't allow. Also, Apple it seems just doesn't want their devices to become general "computing" devices that the public can control with their own software. yuk spit.
  • by gnuman99 (746007) on Sunday January 20, 2008 @03:56PM (#22119574)
    Apple doesn't have the panacea of the OS world. And I own a Mac. Seriously, Vista is not that bad and can be comparable to Apple. The annoying popups shouldn't actually be experienced in properly written software for end-users anyway.

    Windows API/ABI at least is stable. Apple's new OS is less so. I wander how long it will take for 10.0 apps to be unusable. The only "problem" with 64-bit Vista is you can't run Windows 3.1 apps anymore. :)

    I know you can argue that manifests are nasty and all that, but at least the overall situation with manifests is a little better than the old DLL-hell we used to experience. Apple has a better solution from user standpoint, though it has its shortcoming (ie. app bundles).

    But if you are speaking from a programming world (as someone that writes software for all 3 OS - OS X, windows and Linux), Linux's userland is way ahead in the programmer friendliness. Stuff just works. Tools just work. Automation just works. In this light and my experience, both X and Windows are light-years behind.
  • by Simon Brooke (45012) <stillyet@googlemail.com> on Sunday January 20, 2008 @04:13PM (#22119740) Homepage Journal

    Is that it has both GPS and WIMAX on board. That is what makes it a more interesting and forward looking design than Mac Air. Physically, it's boring. The cornucopia of ports is boring. Laptops have these things. It looks so like every other Lenovo laptop that there's nothing 'must have' about the appearance. But I am convinced that the next killer application will be location sensitive and require ubiquitous mobile connectivity. WiFi doesn't have it and 3G isn't very fast.

    Steve Jobs isn't going to lie awake tonight kicking himself because Lenovo have brought out yet another dull black corporate laptop. He's going to be kicking himself about the GPS and the WIMAX.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday January 20, 2008 @04:15PM (#22119758)

    My IT employees carry around a tiny WiFi router to all clients. It's secure, easy to use, and works great. Ethernet for us is now unnecessary.


    That's nice - where does the WiFi router get its network connectivity? Magic?

    You're an idiot.

  • by TheRaven64 (641858) on Sunday January 20, 2008 @04:21PM (#22119804) Journal
    USB is okay for a lot of things, but the CPU requirements and the bloated protocol make it unsuitable for high-bandwidth tasks. With an ExpressCard slot you can:
    • Add a(nother) GigE port.
    • Add a discrete GPU and a second monitor port.
    • Add an external disk interface with enough bandwidth to run a RAID array.
    There are probably a few others I haven't thought of.
  • by manekineko2 (1052430) on Sunday January 20, 2008 @04:32PM (#22119908)
    Yow! I think that's just the first time I've ever seen someone not like the keyboards on Thinkpads.
  • by crhylove (205956) <rhy@leperkhanz.com> on Sunday January 20, 2008 @04:40PM (#22120000) Homepage Journal
    For everything I want to do:\

    Firefox
    Watch Movies
    Skype
    Urban Terror
    Audacity
    Thunderbird
    Abiword
    Civilization 2
    Burn CDs
    Play mp3s

    That system is overkill. Don't get me wrong, extra horse power is always a good thing, but aside from burning a cd, a EEE will do everything I want and (I'm sure) is much cheaper and smaller, and easy to carry. I'd like to see more competition in the ultra cheap department, once I can get something of EEE functionality for $150, I'll be considering lots of extra fun little projects.

    I mean, other than running Vista (why would you do that to yourself, anyway?), is there a point to spending more for that much horse power? Ubuntu runs well on a pentium 3 and does 99% of what most people need!!!
  • by Schmool (809874) on Sunday January 20, 2008 @05:54PM (#22120686)
    No, 10/100 Ethernet isn't all that fast. Apple doesn't really want you to use it either, that's why it's offered as an option, for those who absolutely must plug in. Apple wants you to use 802.11n, which at 30MB/ps is quite respectable. Since the standard disk in the MacBook comes straight from the iPod, at 1.8" and 4200rpm, it's not likely to be a great performer in the high speed transfer department anyways, so why bother with Gigabit Ethernet.

    Perhaps more importantly, Apple wants you to keep your multimedia files on separate devices such as Time Capsule and Apple TV, so you won't be needing to transfer large files anyways ;)
  • by darkwhite (139802) on Sunday January 20, 2008 @06:01PM (#22120728)

    Please get rid of the stupid window keys
    Says you. The Windows key is indispensable in Windows and is very useful in Linux. I find myself wishing my old Thinkpad keyboards had them. If you're upset over the smaller Ctrl or Alt, just remap the Windows key to one of them.

    and useless finger print readers
    What's your problem with the fingerprint readers? They cost like 10 dollars extra and you don't have to use them.

    don't ... get rid of the 14.1 (non widescreen) XGA format.
    It's not the aspect ratio but the display quality that matters to most people. I personally have no idea why anyone whose vision is not seriously impaired would use a 1024x768 screen on a 14.1" panel. I'm fine with the lower resolution being there as long as there's a high resolution option, but to call it an aspect of "quality" that people "deserve" is a little silly.

    Dual core CPUs are useless for notebooks and just suck more battery life with little or no returns for average use.
    Now you're just being silly. You probably haven't noticed that single-core CPUs are now fringe low-end bin parts which are actually dual-cores with one core disabled and won't be seen in higher-end laptop designs at all anymore. You also probably don't know that dual-core CPUs consume far less than twice their single-core counterparts; that the two cores are kept plenty busy with an average user's workload; that one core takes over the other's cache while the other is idle; and that by working together to run a bunch of threads that are woken all at once by modern kernels, dual-core designs can significantly improve C3/C4 sleep time compared to single core, reducing overall power consumption.

    Don't ever even even think about getting rid of the red button mouse but DO seriously concider removing the useless trackpad.
    Here we go with the "keep the features I want, remove the features most of the market wants" again. If there's space for the trackpad, what's your problem with it? If there's no space, they have been known to remove it.

    Dual hotswap (Everything is SATA nowadays anyway) HDD slots for redundancy with some sort of release button with optional locking screw - rather than screws to easily swap HDD. I want to be able to replace a failed drive without rebooting.
    Almost nobody wants two HDDs in a laptop; nobody will ever hotswap a failed HDD out of a laptop without rebooting. A lot more people have use for an optical drive for a laptop (I usually don't). No screws = lost structural integrity. Guess what happens when that hotswap HDD cage falls corner first from a table 3 feet high onto the office floor? That said, HDD hotswap in Ultrabay has been possible forever, whether PATA or SATA.

    My biggest beef with this design is the small form factor HDD instead of the standard 2.5" form factor and the optical drive bay, which I have a use for but which I'd rather not be there at all to save space for the battery and add rigidity to the chassis.
  • by ScrewMaster (602015) on Sunday January 20, 2008 @06:47PM (#22121074)
    Oh, come on. Five years back when Vista was just a gleam in Bill Gates' eye Microsoft was promising all sorts of fantastic things, things that the Mac eventually came out with (or already had at the time) while Vista has been an ongoing mess of promised features being removed. Like I said elsewhere, I don't own a Mac and don't much care for Apple or it's reality-bending leader, but Vista is a lame-duck product considering how long Microsoft had to work on it. I say that as a software engineer who has to learn and work with Microsoft products (hey, it's a living.)
  • No way Jose (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Schmool (809874) on Sunday January 20, 2008 @08:40PM (#22121944)
    There is no part of the MacBook Air where 0.6 or 0.7 of anything will fit, no matter the width. Remember, the MacBook Air is 0.16 to 0.76 inch thick, including the screen. I measured the base, the thickest it gets is 0.35 inch, near the hinge. On both sides of the computer these spots are already taken; on the left by the power connector, and on the right by micro-DVI, minijack and USB.

    By the way, MacBook Air doesn't want to be your next "dull work notebook" or "corporate workhorse". The MBA is a computer for people with smooth hands. If you need a tricked out notebook meant as desktop replacement, try the MacBook Pro. Just don't compare that ThinkPad to a MacBook. The MacBook is a $1100 consumer laptop, the ThinkPad X61 is a $2000 mammoth tanker.
  • by spotter (5662) on Sunday January 20, 2008 @10:59PM (#22122960)
    people who learn how to use the trackpoint correctly, never go back.

    Having to take your fingers off the keyboard to use the mouse on a laptop is not ergonomic.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday January 20, 2008 @11:31PM (#22123146)
    I would rather be dead than to use anything from Apple. They are simply an evil company. I think they actually care less for their users than Microsoft (maybe).
  • Re:Light? (Score:3, Insightful)

    by mdwh2 (535323) on Monday January 21, 2008 @09:49AM (#22126302) Journal
    No - it doesn't run AmigaOS either. I'm not sure that running or not being able to run another platform's OS affects how much publicity it should get or how good it is. (And I find it ironic if being able to run Windows is now touted as an advantage for Macs...)
  • by RedBear (207369) <redbear@@@redbearnet...com> on Monday January 21, 2008 @04:07PM (#22130598) Homepage

    Some of us think the black boxy design is incredibly sexy.
    I don't think the ugliness I see comes from the black boxy design of the outside, which isn't too bad. It's kind of nice all closed up, except for that stupid multi-colored logo on top. But when you open it up the damn thing is full of various holes, marks and different colored buttons that make it look almost like they forgot to put the final case on it. Personally when I opened the linked article the first thought that came to mind was, "How do they manage to make these things so damn ugly?!" with the next thought being that this fancy new ultra-special, ultra-light laptop looks just like every ugly ThinkPad I've seen for at least ten years. But I guess I may have been corrupted by my iBook and MacBook.

    I know ThinkPads are being marketed mainly to businesses, but business users are still people, and by a large majority most people seem to appreciate cleaner looking designs. It would behoove Lenovo to come up with an alternate design to compete better against the Apple laptops that even business users are buying in droves these days. You can bet your booty there will be a ton of business "frequent flyer" and presenter types that will be buying the new MacBook Air despite all it's technical shortcomings. A large part of their reason for choosing the MacBook Air will be the sleek, uncomplicated design. I don't care how technically awesome and super-light this new ThinkPad is, there are a lot of people like me who would much rather lug around a MacBook Pro than be forced to use something so ugly. The GP post was right, it still looks like it was made in 1995. I can't see how anyone would think that's good marketing. Except for die-hard ThinkPad fans, of course.

    Yes, ugly is in the eye of the beholder. But there is a reason people are buying Macs by the millions, and shockingly the software is only part of it.

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