Lenovo T60 - Usability

Moving beyond the specifications and the ports on the T60, we get to honestly one of its biggest selling points - the keyboard.  The keyboard on the T60 is absolutely stellar, with tactile feedback and key positioning among the best in the market.  Much like the T and X series designs of the past, there is a keyboard light that is accessible using the Fn + PgUp keyboard shortcut.  The light is mounted on the frame of the LCD panel and does a decent job of illuminating the keyboard.  The effect is better than having an unlit keyboard, however we do prefer Apple’s fiber-optic lighting system if given an option. 

After Lenovo took over the Thinkpads finally got a Windows key, which had been kept off of their designs by IBM as a way of preserving the size and feel of the left CTRL and ALT keys.  The inclusion of the Windows key results in a mixed bag of feelings, those who didn’t mind mapping it to another key on older Thinkpads will be displeased while those who sorely missed it will be ecstatic beyond belief.  We’re not fond of it, but others may not share our sentiments. 

Also in the usual Thinkpad tradition, there’s a blue ThinkVantage button at the top left of the keyboard that will allow you to interrupt the normal startup of the machine and do anything from restore the entire state of the system back to its factory defaults, change boot devices or access the BIOS.  While the ThinkVantage button was functional, the necessary software wasn’t present to allow us to test the functionality of the pre-boot loader.  We’ll obviously look at ThinkVantage and other similar features once we have final shipping hardware (and software) in our possession. 

Given that it uses a 14.1” 4:3 display, Lenovo had a large enough footprint on the T60 to  include both a trackpad and TrackPoint on the system.  Given how much of a passion users have for one method over the other, including both whenever possible never hurts - especially when you pair it up with an excellent keyboard.  The TrackPoint stick is paired with three buttons, the middle which can be held down to turn the pointer into a virtual scroll wheel.

As with previous T series notebooks, the T60 does feature a fingerprint scanner and software that allows you to simply scan your fingerprint instead of having to type in Windows passwords.  The supplied software will also manage website passwords for you, once again requiring just a finger swipe instead of remembering and typing in your password.  The fingerprint scanner functionality has been on previous Thinkpad notebooks and unfortunately we didn’t have access to the shipping software for this review, so once again we will have to save our evaluation of the technology until a production level notebook is ready. 

All in all the Thinkpad T60 was pretty much what we have come to expect from IBM, which is good to know since it is now manufactured by Lenovo.  From what we’ve seen, the T60 looks to be just as strong as previous Thinkpad notebooks and now armed with Intel’s Centrino Duo platform, it could very well become one of the notebooks to get in 2006.  We’ll reserve final judgment until shipping hardware is available, but so far it is looking promising. 

Lenovo T60 - The Tangible Intangibles
Comments Locked


View All Comments

  • Shark Tek - Thursday, January 5, 2006 - link

    Lets hope that AMD release Turion's X2 with a even more reduced power consumption and DDR2 support that will be really "Sweet".

    Se imaginan un Turion64 X2 o un Core Duo combinado con un x1800 Mobility Radeon eso seria la combinacion perfecta para 'Lan Parties'. Sin la necesidad de andar con equipo pesado.

    Can you imagine a notebook with Turion X2 or Core Duo matched with a X1800 Mobility Radeon. That will be the perfect combination for Lan-Parties. Without the need for carrying heavy parts from your Desktop @ home.

    Just imagine that ....
  • coldpower27 - Thursday, January 5, 2006 - link

    Very impressive.
  • monsoon - Thursday, January 5, 2006 - link

    yeah, me too i'm curious about the Apple products coming with Yonah, and how they stack up to X2 athlons PC Yonah notebooks...

    ...and overclocking !!!

    PS - BTW did you try to overclock the ASUS Yonah notebook ?
  • PeteRoy - Thursday, January 5, 2006 - link

  • Doormat - Thursday, January 5, 2006 - link

    Page loads took forever but the review was interesting.

    I'm still interested to see what Apple does with these chips in their iBooks next week.

    The battery life of the T60 was impressive - 227 minutes for DVD playback. Finally, I can watch an LOTR episode on one battery!

    The release of only 1 single core chip speaks volumes - intel is ditching single core chips when they can. They want to push dual core hard.
  • Calin - Friday, January 6, 2006 - link

    In DVD playback the DVD unit consume some of the power... I wonder if playing a DVD from a virtual drive or from a network would prolong battery life
  • Furen - Thursday, January 5, 2006 - link

    Very lovely power consumption. I suppose power consumption will be a bit higher when both cores are at 100% usage but most of us dont keep our CPU usage pegged at 100% when using a notebook and specially not if we care about power consumption at all. It'd be nice if Intel had decided to go to 90nm on the chipsets but I suppose their power consumption is not that high to begin with and Intel needs a use for its 130nm fabs...
  • Calin - Friday, January 6, 2006 - link

    off course the power consumption will be higher with both cores at 100% usage - but in this case the "work per watt" is greater, as processors don't use all the power in the system.
    Just that people would prefer a laptop that consume a battery charge faster but finish the work much faster than the other way around.
  • cheburashka - Thursday, January 5, 2006 - link

    Intel's chipset shortage problem is because all current MCH's are still on 130nm, which is maxed out in the fabs. They would love to get the 90nm Broadwater/Crestline chips out the door to free up 130nm capacity to build low end parts again.

Log in

Don't have an account? Sign up now