Alternative to Lenovo ThinkPad X/T

Discussion in 'What Notebook Should I Buy?' started by Spine, Jul 12, 2018.

  1. Spine

    Spine Newbie

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    Hi, I'm looking for a business class laptop for light weight, general purpose usage in Linux:
    • Web Development
    • Hobby Programming (nothing that takes more than 5 seconds to compile)
    • Web browsing / Chatting etc.
    No need for a dGPU, as I do not plan to do any gaming or editing on my computer. I would like a light-ish and professional looking laptop with changeable (read: not soldered) batties, RAM, and storage. Dual RAM slots and high core counts would be nice for potential VMs. I would also gladly give up weight/thinness for extra ports - USB C charging and Thunderbolt 3 is a must.

    An X or T series ThinkPad would be my first choice, but after the Lenovo scandals in later years, I've decided not to go that route. The closest thing I could find to what I'm looking for is DELL's Latitude 7490. Anyone got alternatives?

    Thanks for your input!


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    General Questions

    1) What is your budget?
    $1500-2000​

    2) What size notebook would you prefer?
    Thin and Light; 13" - 14" screen​
    3) Where will you buying this notebook? You can select the flag of your country as an indicator.
    Norway or Germany​

    4) Are there any brands that you prefer or any you really don't like?
    a. Like: Dell, HP
    b. Dislike: Lenovo, Apple​
    5) Would you consider laptops that are refurbished/redistributed?
    Yes, though would need to be a highly reputable refurb op.​

    6) What are the primary tasks will you be performing with this notebook?
    See OP​

    7) Will you be taking the notebook with you to different places, leaving it on your desk or both?
    Both​

    8) Will you be playing games on your notebook? If so, please state which games or types of games?
    I won't play any games​

    9) How many hours of battery life do you need?
    Having 8 reliable hours of screen-on time would be nice​

    10) Would you prefer to see the notebooks you're considering before purchasing it or buying a notebook on-line without seeing it is OK?
    It would be preferable, but I doubt it would be possible.​

    11) What OS do you prefer? Windows (Windows 7 / 8), Mac OS, Linux, Chrome OS, etc.
    GNU/Linux Debian​

    Screen Specifics

    12) From the choices below, what screen resolution(s) would you prefer? Keep in mind screen size in conjunction with resolution will play a large role in overall viewing comfort level. Everyone is different. Some like really small text, while others like their text big and easy to read. (Scroll down to see screen resolution information.)
    1920x1080. A more square aspect ratio would be welcomed.​

    13) Do you want a glossy/reflective screen or a matte/non-glossy screen? (Scroll down to see explanations.)
    Doesn't matter​

    Build Quality and Design

    14) Are the notebook's looks and stylishness important to you?
    Has to look professional. I'm steering away from workstation class laptops largely because of this.​

    15) When are you buying this laptop?
    In a month (August)​

    16) How long do you want this laptop to last?
    3-5 years minimum​

    Notebook Components

    17) How much hard drive space do you need? Do you want a SSD drive?
    No need for more than 256GB, a fast drive is a must.​

    18) Do you need an optical drive? If yes, a DVD Burner, Blu-ray Reader or Blu-Ray Burner?
    No​
     
  2. 9ac3

    9ac3 Notebook Consultant

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  3. precision4700

    precision4700 Notebook Enthusiast

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    In anticipation of my upcoming workstation refresh, I researched this extensively, and found the following, which I think should provide a more balanced perspective.

    1. Superfish did not affect Thinkpads [1].
    2. Dell has had a similar issue in the past [2].
    3. HP was caught shipping their systems with keyloggers twice [3], [4].

    Basically, Fujitsu seems like the only OEM with a business line that has not had such issues.
     
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  4. Kent T

    Kent T Notebook Virtuoso

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    However, one caveat with Fujitsu machines. Yes, they're well built. They're reliable. Parts and accessories are harder to find for individual users, and the HP EliteBooks also tend to be harder to find same for, both are also much more expensive on those items. Dell for me has been the best alternative with the Latitude line.
     
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  5. precision4700

    precision4700 Notebook Enthusiast

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    Agreed. HP is fairly expensive, and Fujitsu has some really bad configuration options for the price. I have been using a combination of Lenovo and Dell for the past several years, and it has served me fairly well.
     
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  6. ZaZ

    ZaZ Super Model Super Moderator

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    They never got the memo 10 years ago that prices are dropping like a rock.

    I'd add the Latitude 7390 to your list of alternatives.
     
  7. Spine

    Spine Newbie

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    I wasn't aware Dell had been messing with certs aswell, and I hadn't even considered Fujitsu. Maybe I'll have to get off my high horse and just buy the best hardware after all, we'll see. The sources you listed will be useful for sure. I did have a look at the Latitude 7390, but the price, single RAM slot, and the rumour going around that its mobo is prone to wrecking itself made me put the bigger 7490 over it. Thanks for all the input from everyone - I'm going to have to do a 2nd round of research after this!

    I'll post my findings in a day or two in case anyone is interested
     
  8. Kent T

    Kent T Notebook Virtuoso

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    Facts: Fujitsu may not be cheapest. But they're durable, built like few save for Panasonic ToughBooks. And run when very obsolete. If you run laptops for 5 or more years, the Fujitsus are worth considering or run them till they die. If you replace them 2-3 years buy something else.
     
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  9. ZaZ

    ZaZ Super Model Super Moderator

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    I don't recall saying Fujitsus poorly built, only that they are expensive compared to other brands.
     
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  10. precision4700

    precision4700 Notebook Enthusiast

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    For what it's worth, Lenovo is the majority shareholder of Fujitsu's computing division.

    @Spine I would suggest you also consider the T480s.
     
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