Lenovo launches green (and small) desktop

Lenovo launches green (and small) desktop

Summary: Lenovo is claiming that its latest desktop is the smallest, quietest and most energy efficient. Will it be enough to make desktops cool again?

TOPICS: Hardware, Lenovo

Lenovo is claiming that its latest desktop is the smallest, quietest and most energy efficient. Will it be enough to make desktops cool again?

Probably not since most folks are replacing desktops with laptops, but give Lenovo (all reviews) credit for trying.

lenovo1.jpgThe company launched its ThinkCentre A61e, which Lenovo describes as an "ultra small form factor desktop" starting at $399. Relative to my $150 laptop adventure this deal is a sure bet--at least Lenovo can get you the goods.

Lenovo (statement) is obviously going for the green crowd with this PC, it cites designations from the Green Electronics Council in its release. Lenovo also notes that the A61e uses 90 percent reusable material and 90 percent recyclable packaging. It can also be powered by an optional solar panel. The desktop also surpasses the EPA's Energy Star 4.0 criteria.

Among the key specifications:

  • The ThinkCentre A61e has two chip choices, a 45-watt AMD Athlon 64 X2 dual core and AMD Sempron single core processor;
  • The desktop is 25 percent smaller than previous models and weighs in at 8 pounds.
  • The desktop has a single low-speed fan.

The Chinese PC giant also hits hard with the energy savings claims. Lenovo claims that the A61e can cut energy costs in half.

For example, Lenovo says the A61e can save $20 a year in energy costs for a single user--don't laugh that's the "equivalent of the carbon dioxide emissions created by two round-trip plane flights from Boston to New York."

Obviously, these numbers add up the more PCs you deploy. Fifty desktops would save more than $1,000 a year and 20,000 pounds of carbon dioxide emissions and 50,000 desktops would save you $1 million in energy costs.

And if you're wondering how Lenovo cooked up those figures, here's the handy footnote.

The figures are "based on Lenovo and TBR calculations using a single AMD Athlon 64 X2-based processor. Based on a 5% per year increase in electricity rates and on a daily PC usage pattern that includes 70% of time spent in sleep state, 5% of time spent in idle and 25% of time spent in an operational state. Average electricity price based on American 2007 average retail price 8.37 cents per kilowatt hour."

Topics: Hardware, Lenovo

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  • Basis for belief?

    Are you certain that "most folks are replacing desktops with laptops"? Might not the word "supplementing" be better than "replacing"?

    For me, until the cursor pad disappears, replaced by a mouse, the laptop will remain an awkward novelty. And I am, of course, every potential buyer.
    Anton Philidor
    • The trend in sales

      favors notebooks heavily. But you're right they could be supplementing.
      Larry Dignan
    • You are exactly right, Anton.

      I'll ditch my desktop the day I can find a laptop which the size of a regular sheet of copy paper, is no thicker than a DVD case and pops open to a 20" screen.
    • Bluetooth?

      Who uses the trackpad on their laptop anyway? Bluetooth peripherals all the way.
      • Bluetooth peripherals dying?

        Bluetooth peripherals seem to be on the way out. The space bar on my Logitech
        bluetooth keyboard is flaking out, and when I went to get a replacement all the
        cordless PC keyboards I could find at CompUSA required a proprietary USB dongle.
        The only Bluetooth input devices other than a few mice were for Macs.
    • My 2 cents

      I bought a new 17" "desktop replacement" laptop and sold my desktop.
      Use it all the time, like now, except when I use my new desktop with the 24" widescreen monitor running HD-DVD in native resolution or working on a document with more than one page of text, or...... well you get the idea.
      Sometimes bigger is better.
      In my case the desktop supplements the laptop, but the Lenovo desktop won't do what I want a desktop to do.

      PDA size-15.4" for travel 15.4-17" for local use, and a desktop for things laptops can't yet do.
  • Day late and a dollar short?

    This really isn't anything new. The Mac Mini has been out for years, its much much smaller, and also is very energy efficient. Granted it does cost more, but small size does bring prices up.

    However, it is good to see another small form factor PC on the market. The majority of people do not need these big mid tower machines. A smaller, more energy efficient desktop will work fine for them.
    • And.....

      it's another Apple POS, using POSX for an operating system.
      • No, it can run Windows too

        Although my laptop, which I mostly use, is Vista based, my desktop is a Mac Mini. While the primary OS is OSX, I have Parallels running with WinXP Pro on it. It runs just fine. If I wanted to reboot, I could use Apple Bootcamp for free, and then run Windows as if I was on a regular PC. So, your argument that the Mac Mini runs OSX is not completely revealing. I could run Windows primarily on it if I chose to. However, I like OSX, and look forward to the Leopard release coming soon.
    • mini pc at the same time

      and w/ much more options available for the same or lower cost are not hard to find. they've also been around as long as the mini mac, fyi.
  • then we have had these for years...

    and they look alot more sexier. ;-)


    btw, my next computer will be the new imac. or have I mentioned that lately? heh heh heh

    gnu/linux...giving choice to the neX(11)t generation.
    Arm A. Geddon
  • RE: Lenovo launches green (and small) desktop

    More low-end AMD Junk.
  • Most people?

    You say that most people are replacing their desktops with laptops? In my organization, desktops outnumber laptops substantially, and I don't see that changing anytime soon. If someone needs mobility, then a laptop makes sense, but for most people getting less computer for more money doesn't cut it (except for Mac users, of course!). You guys need to get out into the real world more often.

    I am curious about the processor choice, though. My experience with AMD processors is that they run very hot, which doesn't bode well in a small case like this. By the way, the last I noticed, Dell, HP, and Acer also make small formfactor machines.
  • RE: Lenovo launches green (and small) desktop

    Actually the lowest cost for this (In the US) is $449. But it's probably still worth checking out.

    I'd love to see a detailed review.
  • Smaller is neat, or maybe even 'cool'

    Yes, there are other competing ultra-small form factor desktop units out there in addition to those already mentioned from Aopen, System76, and probably others. I look forward to the day when our computers will be credit card sized, or thumb drive size (there is already a Linux-based machine on USB thumb drive size now) and we can take them with us with the ability to plug in to any available monitor with the right corresponding interface.
    By the way, the Lenovo A61e draws only 45 watts. The price posted on the Lenovo site is $449 with an AMD Sempron LE 1150 (2GHz, 256KBL2) The rest of the specs can be found on the Lenovo website.
    If one is looking for an ultra small form factor desktop unit, the A61e is definitely worth consideration. No, I do not work for Lenovo, but I have been investigating small form factor units - thinking seriously about a Shuttle SN68SG2.
  • lol. It looks like a VCR circa 1983!

    Nice going, Lenovo ;-)
  • RE: Lenovo launches green (and small) desktop

    > optional solar panel

    A new reason for homework not turned in:

    - The sun went behind a cloud and I lost my book report
  • You must work for Intel...

    ...I guess
  • would you like some offsets too?

    this crap really gets old after a while. maybe these people would like to buy some carbon offsets w/ their new pc. i have some i'm never gonna use along w/ my old brooklyn bridge i'd sell cheap.