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IBM ThinkPad R51
Lenovo (since 2005)
ThinkPad is a line of laptop computers designed, developed and sold by IBM but now produced by Lenovo. They are known for their boxy black design, which was modeled after a traditional Japanese lunchbox. Lenovo purchased IBM's personal computer business and acquired the ThinkPad brand in 2005.
ThinkPads are popular with large businesses and schools. Older model ThinkPads, especially IBM branded models, are revered by technology enthusiasts, collectors and power users due to their design, relatively high resale value, abundance of aftermarket replacement parts and sheer durability. The ThinkPad has also been used in space, and is the only laptop certified for use on the International Space Station.
IBM introduced the ThinkPad line in 1992.
The name "ThinkPad" is a product of IBM's corporate history and culture. Thomas J. Watson, Sr, had first introduced "THINK" as an IBM slogan in the 1920s. For decades IBM distributed small notepads with the word "THINK" emblazoned on a brown leatherette cover to customers and employees. The name ThinkPad was suggested by IBM employee Denny Wainwright, who had a "THINK" notepad in his pocket. The name faced disagreements from the IBM corporate naming committee because the nomenclature system for the IBM computers was then numerical; however, the brand name "ThinkPad" was kept as the press showed appreciation for the title.
The first three ThinkPad models introduced were the 700, 700C, and 700T, which debuted in October 1992. The 700C had 25 MHz 486SLC processor, 120 MB hard disk drive, the industry's first 10.4" TFT color display, 2.2 in (56 mm) × 11.7 in (300 mm) × 8.3 in (210 mm) dimension, and 6.5 lb (2.9 kg) weight, cost US$ 4,350. The design of the commercial versions differed significantly from the prototype's keyboard-less tablet design. The bright red TrackPoint, a kind of pointing stick embedded in the keyboard, enabled the notebook to be used on an airline tray table without a mouse. The first ThinkPads were very successful, and soon collected more than 300 awards for design and quality.
Traditionally black, ThinkPads have commonly featured magnesium, carbon fiber reinforced plastic or titanium composite cases. The ThinkPad has introduced innovations, including the TrackPoint pointing device, the ThinkLight, a LED keyboard light at the top of the LCD screen, the Active Protection System, an accelerometer sensor which detects when a ThinkPad is falling and shuts down the hard disk drive to prevent damage, roll cage design to minimize motherboard flex, stainless steel hinges, a biometric fingerprint reader, Client Security Solution, which improves security using a built-in Trusted Platform Module (TPM) and facilitates deployment in corporate environment, the ThinkVantage Technologies suite of computer management applications, and drain holes to help reduce damage to the keyboard and components from accidental spillage.
The original design was a collaboration between Tom Hardy, corporate head of the IBM Design Program, Italian-based designer Richard Sapper (noted for the design of classic products such as the Tizio lamp for Artemide, office chair for Knoll, kitchenwares for Alessi and ballpoint for Lamy) and Kazuhiko Yamazaki, lead notebook designer at IBM's Yamato Design Center in Japan. Sapper proposed a design inspired by the Shōkadō bentō, a traditional black-lacquered Japanese lunch box.
The fold-out butterfly keyboard, which appeared in the ThinkPad 701 series, is widely considered a design masterpiece and is on display at the Museum of Modern Art in New York. The ThinkPad 760 series also included an unusual keyboard design; the keyboard was elevated by two arms riding on small rails on the side of the screen, tilting the keyboard to achieve a more ergonomic design.
The 755CV featured another design quirk: the screen could be separated from the lid, allowing it to be used to project the computer display using an overhead projector, before data projectors were commonplace.
The Lenovo ThinkPad was the PC Magazine 2006 Reader's Choice for PC based laptops, and ranked number 1 in Support for PC based laptops. The ThinkPad Series was the first product to receive PC World's Hall of Fame award.
The ThinkPad X Tablet-series was PC Magazine Editor's Choice for tablet PCs. The 3.5 lb (1.6 kg) ThinkPad X60s was ranked number one in ultraportable laptops by PC World. It lasted 8 hours and 21 minutes on a single charge with its 8-cell battery. The Lenovo ThinkPad X60s Series is on PC World's Top 100 Products of 2006. The 2005 PC World Reliability and Service survey ranked ThinkPad products ahead of all other brands for reliability.
In the 2004 survey, they were ranked second (behind eMachines). Lenovo was named the most environment-friendly company in the electronics industry by Greenpeace in 2007 but has since dropped to place 14 of 17 as of October 2010.
Lenovo ThinkPad T60p received the Editor's Choice award for Mobile Graphic Workstation from PC Magazine.
Lenovo ThinkPad X60 is the PC Magazine Editor's Choice among ultra-portable laptops.
The Lenovo ThinkPad T400-Series was on PC World's Top 100 Products of 2009.
NASA purchased more than 500 ThinkPad 750 laptops for flight qualification, software development, and crew training.
Laptops used aboard the space shuttle and International Space Station feature safety and operational improvements for the weightless environment they must operate in. Modifications include velcro tape to attach to surfaces, upgrades to the CPU and video card cooling fans to accommodate for the lack of gravity (hotter air doesn't rise) and lower density of the cabin air, and an adapter to the station's 28 volt DC power.
The ThinkPad 750 flew aboard the Space Shuttle Endeavour during a mission to repair the Hubble Space Telescope on December 2, 1993. The ThinkPad 750C's task was to run a NASA test program which determined if radiation inherent in the space environment causes memory anomalies in the 750C or generates other unexpected problems.
Throughout 2006, a ThinkPad A31p was being used in the Service Module Central Post of the International Space Station and seven ThinkPad A31p laptops were in service in orbit aboard the International Space Station. As of 2010, the Space Station was equipped with 68 ThinkPad A31 computers along with 32 new Lenovo ThinkPad T61p laptops plus a dedicated IP phone which also has limited video phone capabilities. Work incorporating those laptops into the station's LAN continued into June 2011. All laptops aboard the ISS are connected to the station's LAN via Wi-Fi and are connected to the ground at 3 Mbit/s up and 10 Mbit/s down, comparable to home DSL connection speeds.
In 2005, Lenovo purchased the IBM personal computer business and the ThinkPad brand along with it.
The T Series is the premier line, with high-end features, such as the magnesium alloy rollcage, 7-row keyboard, screen latch, Lenovo UltraBay, and ThinkLight. Models included the 14.1" and 15.6" screens, along with thin and lighter models.
The W Series was introduced in 2008 to replace the p-suffixed performance T Series (e.g. T61p), and are geared towards CAD users, photographers, hardcore gamers, and others, who need a high-performance system for demanding tasks.
The current model is the W530, released in June 2012. Minimum specifications include an Intel Core i5 (or i7) CPU, 15.6" HD screen, Nvidia Quadro K1000M graphics processor and 4 DIMM slots capable of running 32 GB memory.
Previously available are the W7xx series (17" widescreen model), the W500 (15.4" 16:10 ratio model), the W510 (15.6" 16:9 ratio model), and W520 (15.6" 16:9 ratio model). The W700DS and the W701DS both had two displays: a 17" main LCD and a 10" slide-out secondary LCD. The W7xx series were also available with a Wacom digitizer built into the palm rest. These high-performance workstation models offer better screens and faster components, such as quad core CPUs and higher-end workstation graphics compared to the T-series, and are the most powerful ThinkPad laptops available. These retain the ThinkLight, Ultrabay, roll cage, and lid latch found on the T-series. The W7xx line has been discontinued.
The X series is the main ultraportable ThinkPad line, offering a lightweight, highly portable laptop with moderate performance. The 12" X200-series carries all the high-end ThinkPad features like a ThinkLight, 7-row keyboard, and rollcage. The 11.6" x100e/x120e though are all plastic, lacks both the latch and the ThinkLight, and uses a variant of the island keyboard (known as chiclet keyboard) found on the Edge series. The x100e was also offered in red in addition to blue, and white in some countries. Those were more like high-end netbooks, whereas the x200 series were more like full ultraportables, featuring Intel i series CPUs rather than AMD netbook CPUs. The 12.5" X220 features a roll cage, Thinklight, 7-row keyboard, and an optional premium IPS display, the first IPS display on a Thinkpad since the T60p. However, it lacks lid latch (which the previous X201 and X200 had). A 13.3" thin and light line was offered (the X300/X301), though it has been discontinued. A slim 12" line (X201s) with low voltage CPUs and high resolution displays was also offered, though they were also discontinued.
The X Series tablet is a variant of the 12" X Series models, with low voltage CPUs and a flip-screen tablet screen. These include the traditional ThinkPad features, and have been noted for using a higher quality AFFS-type screen with better viewing angles compared to the screens used on other ThinkPads. A 12.5" X220T model is available.
The ThinkPad X100e is an entry-level ultraportable notebook. The X100e is available in standard non-glossy black, red, or white outer cases. It contains unusual features like the presence of three USB 2.0 ports, VGA port, Ethernet LAN port, 4-in-1 card reader, headphone and mic combo jack. Features an AMD Athlon Neo X2 Single-Core MV-40 (1.60 GHz, 512 KB) CPU, support for up to 2 GB 667 MHz DDR2 memory. It comes with ATI Radeon HD 3200 IGP 128 MB graphic cards, 11.6in HD AntiGlare (1,366 x 768-pixels) display and six-cell lithium-ion. Unlike most Thinkpads, it uses the chiclet keyboard of the Thinkpad Edge series.
The Thinkpad X120e is an entry-level ultraportable notebook. It is available in black to consumers and white, black, and red in certain markets. It contained the same ports as the x100e except for an added HDMI port. It features either the AMD Fusion E240 (1.5 GHz single-core) or E350 (1.6 GHz dual-core) CPUs (both of which are Zacate), along with integrated Radeon 6310 graphics. AMD calls this configuration an APU, or Accelerated Processing Unit. It also supports 4 GB of DDR3 1333 MHz memory, though many users have reported that it actually supports 8 GB (which is the limit of the chipset). It also uses the new chiclet keyboard design like the x100e and Thinkpad Edge.
The line is being continued with X130e now consists of both AMD E-series and Intel i3-series based versions. External features are kept identical with motherboard being the only difference between these editions. Memory support is officially expanded to 8 GB, other features are very close to it predecessor.
Includes the X60 and X61, with their associated s and Tablet series. The X60 is the first X-Series ThinkPad to feature Intel chips using the Intel Core architecture. The Core Duo L2400 (Low Voltage) CPU on the X60s model achieves 7+ hours of battery life on standard benchmarks, and can reach around 10 hours under light use, when using the extended-life battery. This model lacks a built-in optical drive, unlike the larger T60. The X61, like the T61, also is the first X-series ThinkPad to use Intel's Santa Rosa platform and to be available with a 3G WWAN option. This series includes the Thinkpad Reserve Edition, a 5,000-model limited edition laptop designed for executive class professionals. It was clad in hand-stitched leather, and came with a three-year 24/7 service warranty.
Codenamed "Kodachi". Released February 26, 2008. Distinguished from other ultraportable laptops by its usage of LED backlighting, removable battery, solid state drive, and integrated DVD burner, it is the flagship model for the X-series. The ThinkPad X300 used the small form factor Intel GS965 chipset, instead of the standard GM965 along with Intel Core 2 Duo L7100 low voltage CPU with only 12 W TDP. Its successor, the ThinkPad X301 uses the Intel Centrino 2 mobile platform with GS45 chipset and an ultra low voltage CPU. It also integrates GPS, WWAN, and a webcam in the top lid. The thickest part of the laptop is 0.92 in (2.3 cm) and the thinnest part is 0.73 in (1.9 cm).
Successor to the X60-series, the ThinkPad X200 laptop leverages the new technology from the X300, including the options of a Solid State Drive (SSD), an optional integrated camera, 12.1" widescreen display, optional 3G WWAN, a new 9-cell battery for extended running time up to 9.8 hours, weight as low as 2.95 lb (1.34 kg), and CPU up to 2.66 GHz Intel Core 2 Duo. The X200s is a newer model of the X200 which is lighter and thinner, and has the option of a WXGA+ screen with LED Backlighting for increased battery performance. The X200 series included Tablet PC models.
An addition to the lightweight X series, weighing between 1.36 kg to 1.72 kg depending on configuration. It was the thinnest ThinkPad laptop to date at 16.5 (front) and 21.5 mm (rear). The screen is a 13.3-inch (340 mm) LED-backlit HD inifinity panel with 1366 x 768 (WXGA) resolution. Base configuration uses an Intel Sandy Bridge 2.5 GHz Core i5-2520M (up to 3.20 GHz) with 4 GB of RAM (up to 8 GB), SATA or SSD hard drive, Intel Integrated HD Graphics, USB 3.0, backlit keyboard, 802.11 b/g/n WiFi and an average of eight hours of battery life. A 13.3" X1 ThinkPad was announced to be available in the UK on June 7, 2011.
The L Series replaced the former R Series, and is positioned as a mid-range Thinkpad offering with second generation Core i3/i5/i7 CPUs. The L Series as launched had two models, the 14" L412 and the 15.6" L512. In March 2011, Lenovo revamped the series to launch the 14" L420/L421 and the 15" L520/L521.
The Edge Series was released early in 2010 as small business and consumer-end machines. The design was a radical departure compared to the traditional black boxy ThinkPad design, with glossy surfaces (optional matte finish on later models), rounded corners, and silver trim. They were also offered in red, a first for the traditionally black ThinkPads. Like the SL, this series was targeted towards small businesses and consumers, and lack the roll cage, Ultrabay, lid latch, and ThinkLight of traditional ThinkPads (though the 2011 E220s and E420s had ThinkLights). This also introduced an island-style keyboard with a significantly different layout.
Models included 12.5"(E220, E220s) 13.3" (Edge 13), 14"(Edge 14, E420, E420s), and 15.6" (Edge 15, E520) sizes. An 11.6" Edge 11 model was offered, but not available in the United States.
The Japan-only ThinkPad 235 (or Type 2607), was the progeny of the IBM/Ricoh RIOS project. Also known as Clavius or Chandra2, it contains unusual features like the presence of three PCMCIA slots and the use of dual camcorder batteries as a source of power. Features an Intel Pentium MMX 233 MHz CPU, support for up to 160 MB of EDO memory, and a built-in 2.5 in (64 mm) hard drive with UDMA support. Hitachi marketed Chandra2 as the Prius Note 210.
The ultraportable ThinkPad 240 (X, Z) started with an Intel Celeron processor and went up to the 600 MHz Intel Pentium III. In models using the Intel 440BX chipset, the RAM was expandable to 320 MB max with a BIOS update. With a 10.4 in (260 mm) screen and an 18 mm (0.71 in) key pitch (a standard key pitch is 19 mm (0.75 in)). They were also one of the first ThinkPad series to contain a built-in Mini PCI card slot (form factor 3b). The 240s have no optical drives and an external floppy drive. An optional extended battery sticks out the bottom like a bar and props up the back of the laptop. Weighing in at 2.9 lb (1.3 kg), these were the smallest and lightest ThinkPads ever made.
The 300-series (300, 310, 340, 350, 360, 365, 380, 385, 390 (all with various sub-series)) was a long-running value series starting at the 386SL/25 processor, all the way to the Pentium III 450. They were lower specified versions of the ThinkPad 700 series, available at a lower price.
The 500-series (500, 510, 560 (E, X, Z), 570 (E)) were the main line of the ultraportable ThinkPads. Starting with the 486SX2-50 Blue Lightning to the Pentium III 500, these machines had only a hard disk onboard. Any other drives were external (or in the 570's case in the UltraBase). They weighed in at around 4 lb (1.8 kg) and are still in use today.
The 600-series (600, 600E, and 600X) are the direct predecessors of the T series. The 600-series packed a 12.1 in (310 mm) SVGA or a 13.3 in (340 mm) XGA TFT LCD, Pentium MMX, Pentium II or III processor, full-sized keyboard, and optical bay into a package weighing roughly 5 lb (2.3 kg). IBM was able to create this light, fully featured machine by using lightweight but strong carbon fiber composite plastics. The battery shipped with some 600-series models had a manufacturing defect that left it vulnerable to memory effect and resulted in poor battery life, but this problem can be avoided by use of a third-party battery.
The 700-series (700, 701, 720, 730 (tablet), 750, 755, 760, 765, 770 (many with sub-models)) were the cutting-edge Intel-based ThinkPads. They featured the best screens, largest hard drives and fastest processors available at the time. This was the first successful ThinkPad introduced in 1992 (the first ThinkPad was a tablet PC without a keyboard and a mouse).
The ThinkPad 800-series (800/820/821/822/823/850/851/860) were unique in that they were based on the PowerPC architecture, rather than the Intel x86 architecture. They all used the PowerPC 603e CPU, at speeds of 100 MHz, or 166 MHz in the 860 model. The 800 may have used a 603, and it is unclear if the 800 was experimental or not. All units used SCSI 2 instead of IDE hard disks. The units are believed to have all been extremely expensive, as the 850 cost upwards of $12,000. The 800-series can run Windows NT 3.5 (probably 4.0 as well), OS/2, AIX 4.14, Solaris Desktop 2.5.1 PowerPC Edition, and Linux.
This is the first ThinkPad laptop to feature a widescreen (16:10 aspect ratio) display. The Z-Series is also the first ThinkPad equipped with a titanium lid (on some models). Integrated WWAN and/or webcam also found on some configurations. The series includes, as of 2006, the Z60 (Z60m and Z60t) and Z61; the latter of which is the first Z-Series ThinkPad with Intel "Yonah" Dual Core Technology. The processor supports Intel VT-x; this is disabled in the BIOS but can be turned on thanks to a BIOS update. Running fully virtualised operating systems via Xen or VMware is therefore possible.
The SL Series was launched in 2008 as a low-end ThinkPad targeted mainly geared toward small businesses. These lacked several traditional ThinkPad features, such as the ThinkLight, magnesium alloy roll cage, Ultrabay, and lid latch, and use a 6-row keyboard with a different layout than the traditional 7-row ThinkPad keyboard. Models offered included 14" SL410 and 15.6" SL510. A 13.3" model (SL300) was previously offered, but discontinued.
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