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PostPosted: Wed May 11, 2011 7:56 am 
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Joined: Wed May 11, 2011 7:36 am
Posts: 1
Location: aichi, japan
Hi, I'm new in this forum and I'm thinking of upgrading my old X41. I want bigger screen so I'm thinking upgrading to ThinkPad L420. But I heard some say that L series is not "fully ThinkPad" in terms of build quality.

1. I saw in the promotional videos of L420/L520 it uses zinc alloy hinges as opposed to metal hinges. As far as I know, zinc alloy is also called as pot metal which is usually found in toy car. I love metal hinges on X41, is this zinc alloy hinges also offers the same (at least close) durability compared to metal hinges?

2. As far as I know, L series does not have ThinkLight (little light on top of the display). Is this true?

3. How about the durability? Because I heard that L series also do not have roll cage casing. Have anyone accidentally dropped it?

All response are welcome especially if you have experienced in using L or SL series ThinkPad

Thanks.


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PostPosted: Thu May 12, 2011 1:06 pm 
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Junior Member
Junior Member

Joined: Tue Aug 28, 2007 7:39 pm
Posts: 498
Location: graz, austria
Hello and welcome to the forum.
Not having seen an L series ThinkPad myself, i doubt that Lenovo would make any compromises in build quality with these notebooks. The reason why the X and T series are more expensive, is that they use more expensive materials in order to save weight. I have no reason to doubt that the zinc alloy hinges, which are used in the L series, are reliable and durable. I can confirm that L series ThinkPads don't have a ThinkLight. If you need a 14" notebook with ThinkLight, you might want to consider a T420 or an Edge E420s. Between these two, i suppose that the displays of the T420 models reflect less light - they have a matt surface, the displays on the E420s models have been said to be somewhat glossy. Considering the price premium, that the T series commands, i believe the L series to be an interesting alternative.


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PostPosted: Sun May 15, 2011 9:25 am 
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Sophomore Member

Joined: Fri Jul 02, 2004 8:23 pm
Posts: 183
Location: Elgin IL
I have an SL410. I previously had a T42.
The SL410 is great in terms of bang for the buck. It is a bit thicker and heavier than the T42, but not to the point where it is a major issue. I sometimes miss the think light, and I still prefer the T42s key layout, but I am getting used to the SL410.

The Keyboard on my SL410 may have even better feel than the T42, despite the slight changes in the layout.

Overall I am happy with the machine. If money was no object I may have purchased the T series again, but this SL unit was less than 1/2 the price.

_________________
SL410 2842FBU 4G RAM, 500G HDD

Previously T42 2378-DUU, 2G Ram 320G HDD


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PostPosted: Sun May 15, 2011 12:11 pm 
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Senior ThinkPadder
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Joined: Wed May 20, 2009 9:54 am
Posts: 2342
Location: near RTP, NC
The price difference between the L420 and T420i is so small that I can't help but think that you'd be better served by simply springing for the T420i. You'll get a much more sturdy machine (the L420 isn't horrible or anything, but it's no T series) and plenty of power for a few bucks more.

_________________
Need help with Linux or FreeBSD? Catch me on IRC: I'm ThinkRob on FreeNode and EFnet.
Code:
Current laptop: X200s/X201 hybrid
Current workstation: none


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PostPosted: Thu Jun 09, 2011 9:12 pm 
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moderator
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Joined: Thu May 06, 2004 11:01 am
Posts: 1508
Location: Forney, Texas
Finally got my hands on an actual L420. Our school is issuing them this year to those of us who had the oldest R60 machines that they issued. So, here is my my admittedly "off-the-cuff" impression of them. My sense is that they are a fitting follow up to a long line of "secondary" level machines going back to the, 300 Series vs. the 600, "A Series" as related to the original Ts, followed by the "R Series" vs. the Ts of that generation. Meaning a very similar level of performance without the extra level refinement both in terms of detailed features and build sophistication necessary for folks who carry their machines through airports on a daily basis. Of course that's what you save in that two/three hundred dollar difference.

Personally, I love that extra level of refinement, so that's what we've always used at home (or X Series machines), but fully understand that its really a very nice "compromise" machine for a public entity like a school district. At least this time, they didn't make the mistake of CTOing the machines down to save a few bucks and thus crippling them! They bought our R60s with 512Mb of RAM, and 40Gb HDDs! Needless to say, that I did an "unauthorized" RAM upgrade within the first week of issue.

But back to your OP; it seems to be a very nicely put together piece that will last through lots of daily use for the next 4 years or so. I really like the KB and the general layout of the machine a lot, much more than the R60. The screen looks better as well, but I must say that my R60 had the worse screen I've ever seen on a ThinkPad! Things I don't like? The low resolution is a bummer. Don't like not having latches either. The styling along the sides reminds me a little bit of the "i Series" that were trying too hard to look like a "real ThinkPad", plus it's a bit thick for my taste. :D

_________________
Family Daily Drivers- X1, T500 (2), T400, ThinkPad Android Tablet, iPad Air, iPad Mini 2, iPad Mini
Work- L420
Wife's Classroom Computers/Mini-Network Project- MacBook, PowerBook G4, iPad 2 (2), iPad Mini
Other Projects- R60, A31 Server
Historic Retired ThinkPads- T42p, X20, A31p, 701c, 760XD


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