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For a mobile laptop, what's more important to you?
Portability 51%  51%  [ 29 ]
Screen resolution 49%  49%  [ 28 ]
Total votes : 57
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PostPosted: Mon May 14, 2012 8:25 pm 
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I was reflecting on the laptops I have used since almost exactly 10 years ago, and realized that I have come full circle in one way. In the first several years, I was obsessed with reducing my travel weight while not caring at all about screen resolution, culminating in the Toshiba Portege R100 (2.38 lbs, 12.1" 1024x768). Then I discovered the advantage of high-res displays and so I gradually learned to tolerate heavier/larger laptops in exchange for more real estate. At the peak of my "resolution phase", I was willing to lug around my 5.4-lb T42 with 14.1" 1600x1200 and occasionally even my nearly-6lb T43p with 15.0" 2048x1536. Eventually I decided I would rather not deal with the T43p's super high DPI and so I sold it, and shortly afterward the T42 died. Presented with this opportunity to start over, I gave lighter laptops another try, starting with the 4.7-lb Sony Z1A, then the 3.34-to-3.55-lb Y-Series Toughbooks, and last month I shattered my "lightest laptop" record twice: the 2.23-lb Dell Latitude E4200 first, and then the 1.82-lb Sony X505ZP. The E4200 is only 1280x800 and the X505ZP is only XGA, but now I value portability over productivity while on the road, like I used to.

For a mobile laptop that goes outside your home (as opposed to a desktop replacement that stays mostly on a desktop), what do you find more important: portability (which can be either weight or size) or screen resolution?. I know that these aren't always mutually exclusive -- for instance the Sony Z2 Series offers 13.1" 1920x1080 at a weight of only 2.6 lbs -- but they usually are. I am just curious which one is more important to most people.

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Last edited by pianowizard on Sun Jul 15, 2012 3:35 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Tue May 15, 2012 1:38 am 
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Depends how mobile it should be. My opinion is that one should have at least one specimen of each. :)

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PostPosted: Tue May 15, 2012 3:06 am 
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If I take a notebook somewhere, it's my X220i. The R60e rarely leaves the house.

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PostPosted: Tue May 15, 2012 7:12 am 
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At first, I wasn't sure how to vote, since I value both almost equally. Or, so I thought. Then I got to thinking about it, and realized that I carry my X40 with me almost every day, in my brief bag, because of portability. I sacrifice a lot of performance and screen rez for portability. My flexview ThinkPads hardly ever leave the house. So the bold type in pianowizard's first post pointed me to my answer.

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PostPosted: Tue May 15, 2012 8:05 am 
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Nice topic. :D

I've gone from huge and low resolution to now having a T61 14" widescreen SXGA at home to a Nook Color "rooted" tablet for travelling. I even have a 4" Samsung Galaxy player (it's everything but a phone) to replace my Palm TX. Works great and fast!

I never went "tiny" ................as in resolution....................

I just want to read the screen.

These are all for pleasure and not for work so I'm satisfied for now.

Ron

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PostPosted: Tue May 15, 2012 9:45 am 
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I just bought a SUPER-lightweight Panasonic CF-R6 for a very good friend of mine.
It has a 10" XGA screen. The darned thing weighs only 930 grams!
Now THAT's what I call portability!
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PostPosted: Tue May 15, 2012 11:48 am 
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RealBlackStuff wrote:
I just bought a SUPER-lightweight Panasonic CF-R6 for a very good friend of mine.
It has a 10" XGA screen. The darned thing weighs only 930 grams!
Now THAT's what I call portability!


In my book, 10", XGA, < 3 pounds, is the sweet spot.
Unfortunately, only two such Thinkpads were ever built, over a decade ago.
(Tablets with TrackBalls don't count).

I'm surprised the OP doesn't have a Sony Vaio P series, which so far, takes the prize for weight:resolution, though the pointing stick is sloppy and the keyboard, while much better than average, suffers from Sony-Style-over-substance.

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PostPosted: Tue May 15, 2012 12:32 pm 
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I can't stand laptops with inadequate vertical resolution. My UXGA T60p may weigh "too much" but them's the breaks. To live with a silly 16:9 machine with a few hundred vertical pixels boggles the mind.

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PostPosted: Tue May 15, 2012 1:24 pm 
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my Sig ( below ) says it all !!
I usually always travel with my SonyZ !! > best of both worlds ---- and still YET to give me any greif ( fingures crossed ) altough I keep the other two very close by !! ( next compartment of the rollaway ) ,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,, and I travel A LOT !!!!! so space & weight is major issue for this OLD FART !

Cheers !

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PostPosted: Wed May 16, 2012 10:01 am 
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RealBlackStuff wrote:
I just bought a SUPER-lightweight Panasonic CF-R6 for a very good friend of mine.
It has a 10" XGA screen. The darned thing weighs only 930 grams!


Wow that's 2.05 lbs! My Sony X505ZP is even lighter but I am sure the CF-R6 is much stronger.

elray wrote:
In my book, 10", XGA, < 3 pounds, is the sweet spot.
Unfortunately, only two such Thinkpads were ever built, over a decade ago.


Yep, only the i Series 1124 (which I owned at one point) and some models of the 240Z, and they weighed < 3 pounds only by replacing their original 6-cell batteries with 3-cell ones. The S30 and S31 actually weighed over 3 pounds. The S30 that I had was 3.07 lbs.

elray wrote:
I'm surprised the OP doesn't have a Sony Vaio P series, which so far, takes the prize for weight:resolution


You shouldn't be surprised, since I said that I disliked the high pixel density of my T43p's QXGA screen (171 DPI). The Sony P Series is 8" 1600x768 and thus 222 DPI!!! Nonetheless, a couple years ago I was watching them closely on eBay hoping to snag one for under $200 but that never happened. In fact, after Sony discontinued the series sometime last year, prices have even gone back up.

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PostPosted: Wed May 16, 2012 8:54 pm 
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Whenever I'm out of the office, my ThinkPad is in my briefcase. It's important that it be as light and portable as possible.

When I'm in the office... well, I have a desktop setup with a docking station. 8)

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PostPosted: Thu May 17, 2012 4:38 pm 
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I would say given an absolute minimum of 1024x768 then portability.
However, other considerations have generally eliminated anything less than a 11.5" screen in the last 10 years: I'm not willing to accept a CPU/GPU/max disk capacity less than what I can get in that form factor. Although my first laptop was a 10.4" 640x480 AT&T Globalyst G130 that I thought was great at the time and I also liked my 11.3" 800x600 Toshiba Portege 660CDT. Those are not exactly light though; they're about 2" thick (I still have them both).

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PostPosted: Sun May 20, 2012 3:00 am 
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i voted screen resolution but if there had been a third choice, "Both" i would have chosen it..
i would like a fair balance of at LEAST 1050 pixels vertical.. these 800 and 900 pixels vertical leave me feeling cramped..

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PostPosted: Sun May 27, 2012 12:40 am 
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You really much experience the 2012 Samsung Series 9 1600x900 PLS screen in person for a few days. Nice!

Looking forward to checking out the new ASUS 13.3" 1920x1080 IPS screen.

I am wondering when we'll see another Flexview model.


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PostPosted: Sun May 27, 2012 3:56 am 
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After several weeks of having X220 with 1366x768 I can say the resolution is completely useless for any long-time serious work. I use external 1600x1200 monitor most of the time. The portability is nice when you need to read emails or fix few lines of source code on site. Otherwise 768 vertical pixels is just hell. 12" 1400x1050 is still the best compromise of portability and usability.

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PostPosted: Sun May 27, 2012 6:56 am 
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After using an X220 at work since two months now, while being used to T6x machines with mostly UXGA and SXGA+ privately, i also voted in favor of the screen resolution already a while ago. I fully agree with Puppy's verdict on the X220.

In spite of its internal technical superiority and support of the latest (still unavailable) peripheral gadgets, i have grown to despise the X220 every day a little bit more, mostly due to this completely useless and abysmal screen resolution, which most of the time requires me to scroll the displayed screen contents. The nice IPS of the X220 simply is a complete waste on such a vertically challenged resolution, and definitely does not really help to make it sufficiently bearable for real work.

Luckily my employer supports a BYOD scheme ("Bring You Own Device"), and therefore i will finally switch from using the X220 to a much more useful customized T61 8895-WFJ equipped with a sufficuently fast T9300, 2x2=4GB of RAM, a brandnew Intel G2 X25-M SSD, and most importantly a much needed SXGA+ display resolution. Therefore i will happily renounce in favor of an older, but not at all obsolete machine which easily is up to the required tasks, and which has a much more real world usage oriented display.

In comparison to the X220 the T61 may have almost 1 kg more weight, only a few hours of usable battery life, a rather crappy TN display, but it surely has enough RAM for its intended use, a suitable SSD to match the still pretty capable Penryn CPU, and is offering the possibility to use an additional Ultrabay battery or HDD in place of the nowadays rather superfluous optical drive.

I have no need for real portability, as i don't have to carry the machine around more than a few times and just a few hundred of meters a day from and to public transport between home and the work place, and just a few times changing rooms a day within the office. An electric outlet and a suitable charger is always available on any desk in the office, and the only real performance requirement is not expected from the machine used at work, but only from the person which is located between its keyboard and the chair in front of the desk. In fact, the T61 described above is much more suitable to support my own productivity and performance than the X220 ever could.

The only downside may be the absence of valid warranty and support of the T61, but as they are very cheap nowadays i already have a complete replacement unit in case of loss or accident. Since i can also easily repair my machines all by myself, and much faster than any support technician would be able to show up, i even feel rather privileged using my good old T61 for work.

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Last edited by rumbero on Sun May 27, 2012 8:56 am, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Sun May 27, 2012 7:38 am 
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Puppy wrote:
After several weeks of having X220 with 1366x768 I can say the resolution is completely useless for any long-time serious work. I use external 1600x1200 monitor most of the time. The portability is nice when you need to read emails or fix few lines of source code on site. Otherwise 768 vertical pixels is just hell. 12" 1400x1050 is still the best compromise of portability and usability.


Agree with this 100%. Most of the time I have my T420 (which has 1600x900) hooked to a 24 inch s-ips HP monitor at 1920x1200. When I use my brothers E420 at 1366x768 with Eclipse to try it out, it's frustrating after only a few minutes. I worked a whole summer with an X61 at 1024x768 and you learn to get adjusted, but still didn't like the experience for development.

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PostPosted: Sun May 27, 2012 12:26 pm 
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wolfman wrote:
When I use my brothers E420 at 1366x768 with Eclipse to try it out, it's frustrating after only a few minutes.
Yep, I use Microsoft Visual Studio 2010 and even with Courier New 9 font and using auto-hide windows to reserve the most of the poor resolution for source code editor, the productivity is about 20% only.

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PostPosted: Sun May 27, 2012 3:01 pm 
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Depends on how good my docking stations are and where they are. :D

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PostPosted: Sun May 27, 2012 3:25 pm 
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This is true. I held off on buying a dock for myself at home for a while as I was struggling to justify the cost. However, got a descent deal on one on the outlet and oh boy, will not have a problem springing for one in the future. It's very nice to use the laptop like a desktop when at home and be an eject away from going on the road with the machine. I've used one at work for years, but when I tried to make the switch from using mainly the desktop to the laptop, the dock really helped.

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PostPosted: Sun May 27, 2012 6:20 pm 
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Puppy wrote:
After several weeks of having X220 with 1366x768 I can say the resolution is completely useless for any long-time serious work. I use external 1600x1200 monitor most of the time. The portability is nice when you need to read emails or fix few lines of source code on site. Otherwise 768 vertical pixels is just hell. 12" 1400x1050 is still the best compromise of portability and usability.


I have expressed my contempt for 1366x768 countless times but if a laptop with this resolution is extremely light, then I still wouldn't mind owning such a laptop. To me, the X220 is way too heavy for a 12.5" machine, with a starting weight of 2.97 lbs. The Sony VPC-X series is also 1366x768, but since it weighs only 1.6 lbs, it's much more appealing than the X220.

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PostPosted: Sun May 27, 2012 7:25 pm 
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pianowizard wrote:
The Sony VPC-X series is also 1366x768, but since it weighs only 1.6 lbs, it's much more appealing than the X220.
I'm just reading the review. Well it is light but the chasis flex shown on pictures is way too much for my taste :)

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PostPosted: Mon May 28, 2012 10:56 am 
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all this "weight discussions" ............... so I got curious :idea:
>>my z2 = 2.5lbs , and with Dock + spare battery = 4.2lbs (weight with laptop bag @Airport check counter) :banana: :thumbs-UP:

near DOUBLE weight (with same bags etc) the X220T+ Battery = 6lbs ! :cry:

Sad sad world when you need to travel light and have the best best configs.. :roll: thinkpads ..pfff!! :(

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PostPosted: Sun Jun 03, 2012 3:22 am 
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Screen resolution is more important to me. I can't live on a tiny resolution these days. Anything less than 1280x1024 and I'll struggle.

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PostPosted: Sun Jun 03, 2012 3:41 pm 
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BOTH. Balance.

Hence I love my X61T SXGA+ . Funny thing I bought it because it seemed like a good hi res machine and did not use it because font was tiny etc.. Now I love it. :)

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PostPosted: Sun Jun 03, 2012 4:52 pm 
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crashnburn wrote:
BOTH. Balance.

Hence I love my X61T SXGA+ . Funny thing I bought it because it seemed like a good hi res machine and did not use it because font was tiny etc.. Now I love it. :)


While I absolutely, positively love the SXGA+ screen of my X60T, the dimensions of the machine with an extended battery - which is a must IMO for any serious amount of work - take away a lot of its supposed portability factor...sure, it's easier to lug around than a 15" T43p, but weighs more than double when compared to my CF-R6...

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PostPosted: Mon Jun 04, 2012 3:19 am 
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crashnburn wrote:
BOTH. Balance.

Hence I love my X61T SXGA+ . Funny thing I bought it because it seemed like a good hi res machine and did not use it because font was tiny etc.. Now I love it. :)

ajkula66 wrote:

While I absolutely, positively love the SXGA+ screen of my X60T, the dimensions of the machine with an extended battery - which is a must IMO for any serious amount of work - take away a lot of its supposed portability factor...sure, it's easier to lug around than a 15" T43p, but weighs more than double when compared to my CF-R6...


*****Expletives removed by Moderator*****! Just looked it up. Its small. Its too small for me to USE. If I wanted something that SMALL/ LIGHT, I'd probably use the iPad with keyboard for the MOBILITY computing.

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PostPosted: Mon Jun 04, 2012 4:58 am 
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I carry my phone (HTC Desire Z aka G2) around all the time. Anything larger than a phone must go in a bag, and the difference between a 2lbs laptop and a 4lbs laptop on my back isn't that significant.

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PostPosted: Mon Jun 04, 2012 12:53 pm 
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Location: New York
My ideal balance is the 14" SXGA+ found in the T4x/6x, but recently, I've shaded towards higher resolution, given that I've got a FHD 15.6" T520 en route. I don't need extreme portability; really, my bigger concern than portability is the PPI count--whether it's a 15.6" FHD or a 12" SXGA+ (à la X60 Tablet), it starts to become a bit of a strain.

It's funny, I groaned about the $200 premium for the FHD panel in the T520, but I'd have happily paid the same without complaint to get one more 14" SXGA+ machine...it really was the perfect balance, given the small footprint but high vertical pixel count. I really couldn't care less about having the extra ~500 horizontal pixels afforded by a FHD panel over SXGA+, but it drives me crazy to go below 1000 vertical pixels...sigh.

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PostPosted: Mon Jun 04, 2012 8:14 pm 
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Senior ThinkPadder
Senior ThinkPadder

Joined: Sun Feb 25, 2007 11:28 am
Posts: 12432
Location: Albrightsville, Pennsylvania
twistero wrote:
Anything larger than a phone must go in a bag, and the difference between a 2lbs laptop and a 4lbs laptop on my back isn't that significant.


That's all fine and well until you have a *lot* of other stuff in the same bag.

A difference between 15 and 17 pounds gets noticeable after a bit of walking...

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...Knowledge is a deadly friend when no one sets the rules...(King Crimson)

Cheers,

George (your friendly retired FlexView farmer)

Collecting SSDI: A31p, T42p

Abused daily: T60, T61, R60F, R500F

For sale: T61p (4:3), T420, T601 QXGA


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