Lenovo ThinkPad T60

Lenovo ThinkPad T60

Summary: The premium you pay is worth it: the ThinkPad T60 delivers a sturdy design, a complete range of network connectivity, top-shelf performance, long battery life, and just enough ports for the typical business user.

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The premium you pay is worth it: the ThinkPad T60 delivers a sturdy design, a complete range of network connectivity, top-shelf performance, long battery life, and just enough ports for the typical business user.

Lenovo ThinkPad T60 Front Angle

The first new iteration of the ThinkPad T series since Lenovo bought the ThinkPad business from IBM, the ThinkPad T60 retains its trademark design but adds in the latest components, including Intel's Core Duo chipset and a handful of new features. Unlike its more consumer-focused thin-and-light counterpart, the wide-screen ThinkPad Z60t, the ThinkPad T60 is built for large-enterprise business customers, incorporating a deep supply of connectivity features but few multimedia extras.

With a starting price of AU$2,699, the ThinkPad T60 is considerably more expensive out of the gate than competing models, such as the Dell Latitude D620, but offers a sturdier design and superior configuration options, as well as excellent performance and a comprehensive array of features. As we did with the ThinkPad T-series model before it, we recommend the T60 to any serious business that can't afford to scrimp on its laptop fleet.

Design
Depending on how you configure it, the ThinkPad T60 weighs approximately 2kg and runs 255mm deep, 311mm wide, and about 25mm thick -- virtually the same dimensions as the previous ThinkPad T43 model. The extended 9-cell battery included with our unit brought its weight to 2.8kg and added 20mm to its depth; its compact AC adaptor added just over 450 grams. There are many more-portable laptops on the market, even within Lenovo's portfolio, but the ThinkPad T60 is light enough for occasional travel and movement around the office.

Lenovo Thinkpad T60 FrontThe ThinkPad T60 is extremely well designed and features thoughtful touches such as sturdy steel hinges, drain holes for accidental spills onto the keyboard, and -- new to the T series -- a shock-mounted hard drive and internal roll cage that holds components in place. The excellent keyboard offers a comfortable layout and features the traditional red eraser-head pointing stick, as well as a sufficient-size touch pad, each of which has a set of mouse buttons. Above the keyboard are three handy external volume controls -- the extent of the ThinkPad T60's dedicated multimedia controls -- and a blue ThinkVantage button, which summons Lenovo's excellent system support and help utility.

Like the ThinkPad T43, the ThinkPad T60 can be configured with either a 14.1-inch or 15-inch standard-aspect display and a variety of native resolutions. Our test unit, featuring a 15-inch display with a fairly fine, 1,400x1,050 SXGA+ native resolution, looked crisp, clear, and reasonably bright; still, we prefer the wide-aspect display found on the ThinkPad Z60t. As with most business-focused systems, the ThinkPad T60's speakers sounded clear but, even when maxed out, soft and relatively flat.

Features
Lenovo Thinkpad T60 SideWhen it comes to ports and connections, the ThinkPad T60 keeps it basic. You get a VGA port, headphone and microphone jacks, slots for Type II PC Cards and ExpressCards, and three USB 2.0 ports -- one more than the ThinkPad T43 but still short of the Latitude D620's four -- and a DVD burner in its swappable bay.

On the other hand, the ThinkPad T60 has basically all of the networking connections a businessperson could want: Gigabit Ethernet, 56Kbps modem, Bluetooth, 802.11a/b/g wireless, and EV-DO WWAN. A handy switch on the front edge turns all wireless radios on and off. The built-in WWAN chip -- the first of its kind in Australia -- is particularly impressive, as it enables users to access the Internet from anywhere they can get a mobile phone signal. The notebook currently only supports the Vodafone network, and just behind the battery is a slot for you to enter a Vodafone 3G SIM card.

Using the pre-installed "Vodafone Mobile Connect" software, provided you've got a data service enabled on your SIM card, you're able to connect to the vendor's 3G network and send/receive email, MMS and SMS, as well as surf the Web through your regular browser. The functionality is very similar to that of a 3G data card, however, a major benefit of the T60's implementation is that you don't need to add an external card -- the WWAN chip is built into the notebook at the factory. Our performance observations regarding this Internet service can be found under "Performance".

The ThinkPad T60 lacks a number of multimedia connections, such as FireWire, S-Video, and a media card reader -- features that aren't crucial to typical productivity work, but which are found on other business-class thin-and-lights. Security features abound, however, including a fingerprint reader and an Embedded Security Subsystem -- a hardware security feature that is similar to a Trusted Platform Module.

Prices

There are currently no prices available for this product.

Topics: IBM, Hardware, Laptops, Mobility

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3 comments
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  • Sounds great, but Only Vodaphone?????

    Give me a break. If there is one thing I am sick and tired of it is Telco Bundling. We are a Thinkpad shop for notebooks because most of our execs travel internationally and they are the only model that survives the punishment over time, but we change Telco's every year so this idea of only working on Vodaphone is a joke! Not only will we have to buy an Optus card anyway which is unneccesary extra cost, but if the internal card interfears with the Optus 3G card, then we can no longer buy Thinkpads.
    It doesn't make any sense??? No upside and high risk for Lenovo. Why restrict your market of potential buyers to customers of a single Telco?
    stuart4-1dcee
  • ThinkPad T60 WWAN

    Something doesn't seem right in this review regarding the T60's WWAN connectivity. The article talks about built-in EV-DO capability but then talks about Vodafone Mobile Connect. Vodafone only uses a GSM-based network - that is: 2G GSM / 2.5G GPRS / 3G WCDMA (and soon will introduce 3.5G HSDPA).

    EV-DO is only used in Australia by Telstra and is part of the CDMA 'family' (2G CDMA / 2.5G 1xRTT / 3G 1xEV-DO) and does not use SIM or USIM cards. Telstra are phasing out their CDMA technology and, using the same 850MHz frequency as the CDMA network, expanding their GSM-based network including rolling-out HSDPA.

    Telstra are also currently offering a bundled deal with the T60 for EV-DO access but they supply an external USB modem to provide the connection. All customers with EV-DO data cards will be given 'free' HSDPA cards when the new network is ready.

    (I don't work for Telstra; I used to but got outsourced and then my job got offshored!)
    sean.kenny
  • Maybe not

    I've heard you can call Lenovo, accept you won't get any more support on the topic of internal WWAN and they'll pass you the unlock code, to allow any sim card be used.
    anonymous