Lenovo ThinkPad T14 & T14s Owners Thread

Discussion in 'Lenovo' started by Ramzay, Aug 2, 2020.

  1. Ramzay

    Ramzay Notebook Connoisseur

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    Price/performance does matter, hence the dissatisfaction with many higher-priced machines.

    ThinkPad X1 does cost a lot, and you're paying for the form factor (much like the new XPS series). It's why I'm mostly quite happy with the Inspiron 5505 I got - given what I paid for it, it performs fairly well. I'm even happier with my old E7440 Latitude - I bought it used/refurbished for $300 CAD 3 years ago, swapped out the 8GB of RAM for 16GB and it works just fine. A machine that was solidly built. Also why the IdeaPad 5 is so popular - it's good value.

    And you're right, you don't need a Ryzen 7 for working on spreadsheets. Nor a Ryzen 5 for that matter. I really just need a CPU that's "fast enough", though I like power-efficient CPUs for better battery life and better noise/cooling. Truth is, a lot of the laptops being sold are far more powerful than they need to be for the average user, which results in worse thermals and battery life.
     
  2. Scollurio

    Scollurio Notebook Guru

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    Truth in all what you say.

    Remember 2011ish? If you wanted great battery life and thin and light, you got a MacBook Air. It was reasonably priced, had a **** screen, low specs, but it was the "use it all day" Laptop and basically started the whole thinner and lighter things. If you wanted a decent everyday-machine you just got a MacBook and for heavy lifting a MacBook Pro. There was a clear differentiation there and the MacBook Pros around 2011/2012 weren't paperthin yet and had decent ports.

    Now looking at the convoluted Lenovo Lineup of machines, it's really hard to get a decently priced machine with "not too much power" as to not overwhelm the chassis ability to cool it down for let's say simple typing a novel or working with spreadsheets. Again I feel like a Ryzen 3 quadcore option is missing across the board. Of course one could also go for the lower specs Intel chips, which at this point is ridiculous because you'd be paying more for less and thermals are actually even worse, the only thing saving the thermals is the fact, that they are just not as fast/there are just not as many cores. I'd gladly go with a thicker chassis, like a P1 or P14s and their dual-fan and quad-heatpipe setup, or even better yet, with a Legion's vapor chamber. I feel like the R7 would really need that kind of cooling and if you'd boost it up to it's full 25W potential, I don't think ANYONE would ever need (until the next die shrink) any other processor for heavy lifting.

    The R7 in my T14s get's around 25200 multicore score in Geekbench. While a synthetic test it's still an indicator. The Intel based P1 from last year, a workstation class machine, get's 24000.

    Crazy times.

    I'll need some more time to make up my mind, but at the moment I'm leaning towards a T14 with R5 in the hopes of better thermals.

    Fell in love with the ThinkPad Keyboards, hard to use anything else now...
     
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  3. Starlight5

    Starlight5 Yes, I'm a cat. What else is there to say, really?

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    I personally am stuck with Thinkpads because of input devices. Their keyboard is great, and trackpoint is simply unmatched. There are other things to love, but also quite a few things to hate about Thinkpads. Regardless, I feel there is no choice for me, and it's very disappointing.

    I considered getting a Surface Laptop 3 AMD and making a custom lower shell for it to accommodate Thinkpad Compact USB keyboard, but it is a terrible waste of my time, effort and money, and I would be stuck with soldered slow 802.11ac wifi adapter which is pretty much a deal-breaker for me. Surface Laptop 4 AMD is not out yet, and will definitely cost an arm and a leg with maxed out RAM, because it's soldered - while other AMD-powered machines are no better than Thinkpads.

    Recent Thinkpads would be fantastic... if Lenovo offered WQHD/4K with Ryzen CPUs. FHD displays suck - the resolution is too low, and they are traditionally inferior to most 4K & WQHD displays in other aspects. Intel CPUs suck - they are far less secure by design than AMD, even without the constant stream of new vulnerabilities - but only they are offered with high-res displays in current Thinkpad lineup.

    I don't think I can wait another year for next update cycle in hopes Lenovo finally makes an AMD Thinkpad with high-res display, will have to settle for something now...
     
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  4. FusionR86

    FusionR86 Notebook Enthusiast

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    Might be a weird question, but would it be possible to replace the screen in a a T14 (AMD) with the 4k screen from the T14i? Not sure if they use the same connectors, and I wouldn't know where to look that up.
     
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  5. Starlight5

    Starlight5 Yes, I'm a cat. What else is there to say, really?

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    No. The motherboards of AMD Thinkpads have 2-lane* EDP, meaning 1920x1280 or something along the lines is max they can handle. They definitely can't do WQHD or 4K.

    * - while I didn't see the schematics, ODMs design motherboards according to OEMs spec, and since Lenovo didn't plan to put WQHD or 4K displays in AMD Thinkpads, 99.9% the ODM who designed the motherboards didn't put 4-lane EDP instead of 2-lane.

    p.s. if it was possible to just put a 4K or WQHD display from X1C to any AMD Thinkpad, I wouldn't complain and praise Lenovo as the best vendor ever. (=
     
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  6. Scollurio

    Scollurio Notebook Guru

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    I'm also no fan of limited screen selection on AMD machines but to be honest, for MY (yours might differ) usecases I don't see the point of a 4K panel in a 14" frame. Even if it would be a visible difference (which for ME it isn't), I can't think of doing such graphic sensitive work on such a tiny screen for a long enough time the 4K's extra sharpness would benefit my eyes. I use my Laptops on big color accurate monitors for that and only use the built in screen for "quick fixes" when I'm away from home or actual creative writing. 4K panels on anything smaller than a 17" feels like a complete waste of battery life to me. But hey, the option should be there at least.

    Personally I find the sweet spot is something "2Kish" like the MacBooks do, or something around 1440p-ish. But I really don't mind a good 1080p screen, just wish they'd be a bit more color accurate with quicker response times, because "blurry text" when scrolling fast through walls of text for hours on end when editing, is a strain on my eyes!

    As for the current ThinkPad situation, I figure it's the same like with all computers. There's always something better around the corner, if you wait for it, you'll wait forever. Get a Computer that most closely resembles what you need, live with compromises and try to get rid of it when something better comes around and get that instead. Luckily ThinkPads do hold their value a bit longer than your standard Acer thing. Not as well as MacBooks but hey compared to them they don't cost an arm and a leg, even if they are already on the expensive side.

    Tomorrow the TNT guys pick up my returned T14s, as soon as I get my money back I'm getting the T14 with R5 and call it a day. Hope notebookcheck.com will FINALLY upload their ThinkPad AMD reviews... also Lisa Gade's MobileTechReviews Youtube channel should have their reviews up this week.

    PS: Also love the Trackpoint! :)
     
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  7. Scollurio

    Scollurio Notebook Guru

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    For those interested I've written up my experiences with my ThinkPad T14s in detailled review form here. :)
    Today the fedex dude collected my T14s - I did return it because of heat issues. Once I got my money back, I might investigate the T14 with R5. :)
     
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  8. Starlight5

    Starlight5 Yes, I'm a cat. What else is there to say, really?

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    WQHD at 14" @ 100% scaling is the perfect display for me. 4K can be scaled down to match that, while with 1080p I just don't get enough space - especially vertical - and it's not sharp enough at 14". Also, I strongly prefer 3:2 ratio, but there are very few displays with it.
     
  9. Ramzay

    Ramzay Notebook Connoisseur

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    Using almost any other keyboard after using a good ThinkPad keyboard is difficult indeed.

    Definitely wish there was more customization options. I want a 15" ThinkPad with the high-quality keyboard, 400 nits display, AMD Ryzen, a non-fingerprint magnet finish (like the silver finish that was available on some prior ThinkPads) and smaller bezels. But I don't need/want to pay the outrageous premium the T-series commands simply due to...I don't know what, exactly. Certainly not worth 2x the price of an IdeaPad.

    I'd recommend posting that review either directly in the Lenovo forums, or posting and linking to it - currently people will have to read through this entire thread before seeing your post with the link to the review. By this I mean a new thread in the Lenovo forums titled "T14s review" or something like that to make it easy to find.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 12, 2020
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  10. Starlight5

    Starlight5 Yes, I'm a cat. What else is there to say, really?

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    I've dropped and spilled drinks on my X-series Thinkpads, seen others do the same with their T & X Thinkpads, and repaired both business and consumer machines after some more adventurous escapades way too many times to agree with you. Thinkpads are built like tanks and totally worth the extra price. The fact that Lenovo gimps Thinkpads as if on purpose, by putting poor (compared to many Ideapads) displays in them, and making questionable design choices like m.2 SSD slots that are unable to accomodate double-sided drives, doesn't change that.

    Ideapads are in a different league. Just like Macbooks, Microsoft Surface devices, Dell XPS line - and every other consumer & premium consumer laptop or tablet out there, despite whatever great features they may have. For me, laptop is a working tool - not some shiny toy to be pampered with or a gaming device safely sitting at the table - and there is no doubt whether my laptop will be dropped or get liquids spilled on - it definitely will get a fair share of both! Any laptop not designed to withstand such accidents and easily repairable if it does end up damaged, is a a poor choice for me. Same with warranty - if not international & on-site, it's pretty much useless.
     
    Last edited: Aug 11, 2020
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