In itself the fact that the Lenovo is slender doesn’t matter. However, the compact size of the X300 undoubtedly helps to reduce the weight so it has an indirect effect. There are three parts of the specification that appear to be central to the reduced size and heft of the X300, starting with the slender tray-loading DVD writer that measures less than 10mm in thickness.
Then there’s the screen, which uses LEDs for the backlight to give a brightness of 300cd/m². It’s very thin, reasonably bright and the lid has the unusual ability to open out a full 180° until it lies flat on the desk. Unlike previous IBM and Lenovo ThinkPads, the X300's screen has a widescreen aspect ratio of 16:10 - the resoultion is 1440 x 900 - so if you’re expecting a square-ish 1280 x 1024 you’re in for a surprise. In this respect, Lenovo is catching up with the rest of the laptop market and about time too.
The X300's third neat feature is the 64GB Samsung solid-state drive that sits in place of the usual hard disk. We’ve seen SSDs on some laptops as a scarily expensive option but in this case it’s the only game in town. If you want an X300 you have to swallow the cost and suffer the relatively small amount of storage. Our review machine ran Windows Vista Business Edition and had a modest software package that included the ThinkVantage utilities, WinDVD, PC-Doctor 5 and Diskeeper 9.0 Home Edition. Yes, it seems that you still need to defrag your SSD which makes sense as the file system is unchanged, but it seems like an odd concept to defrag memory.
The 64GB drive had a true capacity of 61GB capacity with 38GB free for your software, music and photos. Cut it how you like, that’s not a huge amount but it’s well worth the pain. For one thing the durability of an SSD compared to a hard drive is huge. Chuck your laptop out of a window, run it over in your car or abuse it in some other way and you may break the chassis of the Lenovo but your data will probably survive. Truth be told, we haven’t tested that particular aspect of the SSD but hard drives are delicate while non-volatile memory is robust.
The direct benefit of the SSD is that the Lenovo is nearly silent. The only noise is the processor cooling fan and as Lenovo has chosen a low-power Intel Core 2 Duo SL7100 that runs at 1.20GHz the cooling doesn’t have to work very hard.
It is genuinely eerie to run Windows on a laptop that is silent and gives an indication of what it will be like when we all drive electric cars and the background noise in our towns and cities drops to a whisper.
OMG, a dub-notebook article that's not written by Tony Smith!!!
Where is he and what have you done with him?
A few things.
First, lauding IBM for "catching up" with a widescreen display? Having recently been given a Dell with such I *really* miss my old 4:3 HP. Same screen width, less height=less screen, the resolution hike doesn't compensate at all. Until documents start being produced in A4 landscape by default rather than portrait, widescreen display will be a hindrance rather than a help on work machines. Even code tends to be long and narrow FFS!
Secondly, "......what it will be like when we all drive electric cars and the background noise in our towns and cities drops to a whisper." The answer to this one is "Bloody dangerous!". I came perilously close to getting "Prius'd" the other day when one snuck up behind me in stealth mode. You don't realise how much you rely on your hearing for threat detection until some SOB invents a way of circumventing it.
Finally, defragmentation. Take a well-used XP box and install a quality defrag product. Now run a full on and offline defrag including the MFT and metadata. Once complete check out the performance hike. I was utterly gobsmacked, and this was on a machine regularly defragged with conventional weapons. NTFS doesn't need defragging in much the same way as computers don't need electricity (i.e. you can do your computing on a hand-cranked Babbage engine, but it ain't going to be quick). Still, maybe that's all fixed in Vista........(not holding breath).
subs start with much smaller formfactor... eg 12" screen. its not all about the thickness of the device...thats an incorrect view spouted by Apple marketing. Toshiba Libretto, Asus Eee900, old classico Apple 12" powerbook... these are all sub-notebook.
notebook is 13.3 to 14" screens
Ermm.. wrong comparison?
Comparing the x300 with a Macbook Air is wrong. Try comparing it with a standard 13" MacBook:
x300 Dimensions: 12.4" x 9.1" x 0.73" - 0.92"
Macbook Dimensions: 12.78" x 8.92" X 1.08" (SLIGHTLY thicker, but not much)
x300 Weight: 3.32lbs
Macbook Weight: 5.0lbs (Nearly double the weight - fair enough!)
x300 processor: 1.20GHz Intel Core 2 Duo
Macbook processor: 2.1GHz or 2.4GHz Intel Core 2 Duo (LOTS faster)
x300 Storage: 64GB SSD
Macbook Storage: 120GB 5400-rpm Serial ATA hard disk drive (LOTS more storage)
x300: Nearly £2000!
I know which one I'd rather buy. In fact, I might buy 2, and still have cash left over for a nice weekend break...