Two Month Review

March 31, 2006

After two months of daily use I am very satisfied with the Lenovo ThinkPad Z60m. It has been reliable and largely without flows or issues.

Minor Gripes The lack of a powered FireWire (IEEE-1394) port is annoying. What it has is a 4-pin 1394 port instead of a 6-pin. Not paying attention I didn’t realize the significance of the missing two pins until after I bought a plug adaptor to allow me to use a 6-pin FireWire cable for my portable drive. Not really major as I can use the USB 2 ports and get decent transfer speed.

Even after two months I still think this machine is too thick. At 1.5 inches it is only .5 inches thicker than my Powerbook. In a side by side comparison the ThinkPad looks huge and clunky. Apple’s industrial designers really are the best. Still the case is sturdy and has held up will with near daily handling, trips in a case, and being carried around at work. The oil from my hand does leave a mark on the cover where I grip it, but so far that has wiped off easily.

Recently the machine has developed a reluctance to stand-by, even when I use the Fn-F4 key combination. Some of the development software (Eclipse) that I use appears to interfere with the stand-by mode. Quiting the software sometimes allows stand-by to be achieved, but not always. One more than one occasion I’ve had to shut the machine down in order to regain suspend mode. I’m sure there is some obscure driver conflict buried in the depths of the morass of DLLs and registry entries that make up a Windows XP machine, I just don’t have the patience to hunt it down and remove it.

To be fair, the stand-by issue is really the fault of the OS and installed software and not the ThinkPad itself.

Things I like The wide-screen is worth the extra money. Especially with the higher end video card; at 1680 x 1050 maximum resolution I have lots of real estate for the tools I want to use. The 1.86 GB processor is snappy; and the upgrade to 2 GB of RAM makes this machine a great performer.

Would I Buy One Again Yes. Although, if in a year or so the MacBook is openly running Windows OS as well as any non-Apple Intel machine I would be sorely tempted to sell the ThinkPad and get an Apple - just for the form factor.

Overall I’d give the ThinkPad Z60m a 7 out of 10.

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Mark H. Nichols

I am a husband, cellist, code prole, nerd, technologist, and all around good guy living and working in fly-over country. You should follow me on Twitter.