Thursday, 12 July 2018

Lenovo T430 - a dynamite laptop with an attractive price tag

My go to laptop of the last 6 months has been this little beauty. I picked it up cheap and while she ain't much to look at:

The T430 - image from: https://www.lenovo.com/us/en/laptops/thinkpad/t-series/t430/
it's a ripper of a machine. Now I paid under $250AUD for this off a friend. The Windows install was stuffed and needed a full rebuild. Pretty easy right - 2 hours for install and then wait for patches - but she wasn't having a bar of it and bought a shiny, but shite new laptop. And I ended up with a terrific spare laptop that quickly became my number one machine.

The specs of this beast:
  • 3rd generation Intel® Core™ i7-3520M (2.90 GHz, 4MB L3, 1600MHz FSB)
  • 256 GB OPAL SSD
  • 8GB RAM
  • 14.0” HD (1366 x 768) (200 NITS) - look at those NITS!
  • 2.166kg
  I get about 6 hours out of the battery - and this is mostly running the machine flat out. It has a nice bright screen, isn't very heavy and is very robust. The shining feature of this laptop is the keyboard.

The keyboard in all it's awesomeness. Image from: https://kelsusit.com/lenovo-thinkpad-t430s-core-i7-refurbished-laptop/


Lenovo have really done a great job keeping such nice keyboards on their laptops. This one in particular is great to use - a joy in fact. I recently typed a 3000+ word essay on it for Uni and appreciated how good the keyboard was consistently during the process. Compared to the brand new Apple laptop I've written about previously - laptops that are now having huge complaints about the keyboards - this one is great. And Lenovo have kept this quality with other laptops of theirs I've had the opportunity to play with - for example, the E570 and the X1 Carbon. I've actually got a review on the brand new Gen6 X1 to write up - keep an eye out for it.

The reason I write this is to promote the idea that older technology need not be obsolescent. A machine like the T430 is honestly a powerhouse - it smashes desktop work, has a nice sit-in dock available for it, USB3 ports, SSD disk as a standard option and has a very readable and usable screen. I managed to watch 3 episodes of Altered Carbon on it without the battery dying on me. Even better it has an Ethernet port, DVD writer and a top lit keyboard - there is a little LED light in the top of the monitor. Very handy for night work, or working in a roof - which I have done. As a rugged laptop it's great - apparently it's been tested to Milspec, but has shown to me to be resistant to falls (oops!), dust, heat and cold - 40C to 0.5C.

These laptops are available on eBay in price ranges between $100 and $400. Keep an eye out and you might grab a bargain!

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