My Review: Lenovo ThinkPad X120e

Discussion in 'Laptops' started by s_anuj, Mar 13, 2012.

  1. s_anuj
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    s_anuj Privileged Users

    It’s black, not shiny and built tough… that’s a Thinkpad for you. For those who’ve valued features in a laptop, ThinkPads have always held a special place.

    However, there are two problems when you want to buy a ThinkPad in India.
    1. They are quite expensive
    2. You can't find them for a individual purchase.. ANYWHERE!!!

    So, imagine my surprise when I finally found a ThinkPad on FlipKart.com & that too for under Rs 21K. I promptly placed an order with Flipkart considering the pricing was less than the listing on Amazon.com. For the uninitiated, laptop costs on an average are 20-30% higher in India for the same config.

    The ThinkPad X120e I ordered was sporting an AMD E-350 processor, 2 GB RAM, 320GB Harddrive, 11.6†1366x768 screen along with webcam, 3 usb ports and a HDMI port. I placed an order for an extra 2GB DDR-3 1333 as well.

    Two days later I had theThinkPad box inside another flipkart box lined with bubble wrap! You can never have too much protection I guess.

    The Unboxed experience:

    The box didn’t really contain too much. A ThinkPad charger that works with all ThinkPads (tested successfully on an X220 & X301), a 6-cell battery and the laptop itself. There was minimal documentation & not like I’d read it anyway.

    The Laptop itself did not come with Windows. Which is awesome cause that meant no bloatware. Yay!

    Initial reactions:
    • The build quality is splendid
    • I’ve always liked the ‘ThinkPad Black’. This one doesn’t disappoint.
    • The keyboard has a good feel to it
    • It has a matte screen. I’ve always disliked the glossy ones.

    Next post ... setting it up… Will post on how that goes…

    Content replicated from unboxedninja.blogspot.com (Mods please let me know if this is a problem)
  2. b_naresh
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    b_naresh Privileged Users

    Congrats! I'm a Ideapad Y460 user since the last 1.5 years. I fully agree with the matte screen observation. That has been my main gripe with my laptop, the other being slow hard disk. If Lenovo came up with a 14 inch gaming laptop with matte screen and a fast hard disk(7200 rpm or SSD), I'm sure it would find a lot of takers.
  3. sunny27
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    sunny27 Stig's Indian Cousin!!!

    Good review add pictures. I will be reviewing the x120e later as well.
  4. Sub
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    Sub Privileged Users

    This laptop has ridiculous value for money. Maybe the very best in the entire tech world. Look forward to reading more of your review.
  5. s_anuj
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    s_anuj Privileged Users

    All, thanks for the encouraging words.

    HD playback & 3D performance Review:

    This part of the review was requested by @ev1lb0ygen1us [​IMG]

    I got a few queries on the overall performance of the system. So I thought I'd run a quick check on how it fares in the video playback & 3D graphics space. 3D gaming probably uses the most resources in a consumer PC & playing a full HD (1080p) movie easily draws a line on what's the bare minimum one should expect in a PC/laptop today.

    When it was first launched, the ThinkPad X120e had some issues playing HD video. (See Laptopmag's review). However, with the updated BIOS & drivers that issue was supposed to be sorted out. So was it?

    Full HD playback review:

    I was relieved to see that Lenovo's updated drivers/BIOS have sorted out the initial hiccups.

    The first test I ran was the movie Hero running 1080i resolution on media player classic. The CPU usage hovered around 30% and the video ran without a stutter.

    [​IMG]

    Next test was the IronMan (1080p resolution) on the same player. This time the CPU usage was between 22%-30%.

    [​IMG]

    Overall video playback verdict: The ThinkPad X120e was able to handle high resolution videos without any problems and with enough CPU bandwidth to spare. The speakers however weren't great, if you are planning on watching movies on this use headphones or external speakers.

    3D performance:

    Now for gaming performance. Well I don't plan to game on the X120e (I have my desktop for that) so I ran some synthetic benchies.. 3Dmark05.

    In the tests I compared 3 machines I have.

    Machine 1: Gaming Desktop running Intel quadcore Q6600, AMD HD4850, 4GB DDR2 Ram, 2TB+500GB HDD

    Machine 2: Old Desktop running AMD athlon 3000+, Nvidia Geforce 6600GT, 1GB DDR1 Ram, 160 GB HDD

    Machine 3: ThinkPad X120e running AMD E-350, AMD Radeon HD 6310, 4GB DDR3 Ram, 320GB HDD

    First the overall 3Dmark score:

    [​IMG]

    Game FPS scores 3DMark05:

    [​IMG]
    Nothing surprising when compared to the gaming desktop. The laptop gets smoked. But what's surprising is it scored lower than a 2006 desktop.​

    Overall 3D performance verdict: This laptop config is not really for hardcore gaming. Simple games however should be able to run ok.

    <Content replicated from unboxedninja.blogspot.com>
  6. letmein
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    letmein Privileged Users

    Hey, could you take a picture of the laptop from the side? I want to see how much the battery sticks out.
  7. s_anuj
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    s_anuj Privileged Users

    Here you go mate... Hope this helps

    [​IMG]
  8. F3niX
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    F3niX TechH0LiC

    Awesome laptop!!

    I am actually suggesting all my friends to go for X130e.! Its too good for price!

    Still waiting!!

    Used the X120e(my Friend's) and Was actually so angry with my XPS 15, that I was about to ditch it!

    But took lite!
  9. s_anuj
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    s_anuj Privileged Users

    Here's what i understand about the X130e.. Thou it's the same size (11.6"), it's heavier at 1.8Kg vs the 1.5kg for the X120e. Think it's due to reinforced lids & casing. That would make it a bit thicker as well. So it loses some of its mobility.
  10. Sei
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    Sei Privileged Users

    Some comment on the battery life [​IMG]
  11. s_anuj
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    s_anuj Privileged Users

    Getting a little over 6 hours with normal usage.. i.e. wifi always on, surfing, MS office etc. This is on Win 7 64 ultimate.

    Get the ThinkPad power manager... It got good options + something called battery stretch. When the battery drops below a pre-defined point, it automatically turns off radios, lowers refresh rate & brightness of the screen and a few other things to give you a precious few additional minutes.
  12. sunny27
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    sunny27 Stig's Indian Cousin!!!

    Keep an eye over battery wear level. Install HWMonitor to check out on the wear level. Each and every laptop/mobile battery looses its capacity over prolonged use/charge and discharge cycles. Use the Thinkpad Power manager to check on the health of the battery and perform battery resets after every 9 -10 charge/discharge cycles. The options to reset it are within the Power manager.

    Thinkpad batteries are expensive although frequency of the wear level is considerably lower than other laptops.

    @x120e owners : FInd the make of your laptop battery - Apparently Toshiba made batteries don't last long. Check Notebookreview forums for additional details/tweaks/modifications as well the best driver combinations to improve your x120e.
  13. mh09ad5578
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    mh09ad5578 the aRchiTect!

    hi sunny maybe a bit OT here, but any pointers regarding the same for the HP dmz1?...am a bit concerned coaz i just charge the lappy keep using it on the batttery and then when is out of juice just plug it in(on line of a mobile phone) any pointers on how to use it here.!!!!
  14. sunny27
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    sunny27 Stig's Indian Cousin!!!

    I used the Hp dm1z from May 2011 to Dec 2011 - its a very good laptop and the battery holds its capacity nicely. When I sold it the battery was worn by 8%. Hp Dm1z batteries are cheap. Read up on Notebookreview forums to get to know how to tweak the laptop for battery/performance. I did the same.
  15. kekerode
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    kekerode Privileged Users

    #s_anuj

    Can you please post a side view pic of X120e showing maximum tilt angle of screen? Is it 180 degree like X220?
  16. s_anuj
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    s_anuj Privileged Users

    Interesting question... I didn't think about this.

    The laptop tilts to about 160 degrees... It can go a 180 but is blocked by the extended battery.

    [​IMG]
  17. kekerode
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    kekerode Privileged Users

    thanks [​IMG] ... my problem is solved ... getting X120e [​IMG]
  18. Metalspree
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    Metalspree Privileged Users

    I am about to pick up the X120e from sulekha. Would be nice if some one can answer the below questions

    1) Does it run hot ? , been reading a lot about the same,

    2) Also any issues with screen flickering ?

    Really worried to pick it up after reading this thread http://forums.lenovo.com/t5/X-Serie...Lenovo-X120e-issues-and-solutions/td-p/390061

    Also what is the difference between X120e and X130e

    #s_anuj and #sunny27 some help here please.
  19. sunny27
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    sunny27 Stig's Indian Cousin!!!

    @ metalspree - it doesn't run hot. i would say it runs cooler after the bios upgrade.its a thinkpad - so the build quality is very good. I have been using the x120e which belongs to a colleague who got it off sulekha.com. it has a 5400rpm hdd vs the 7200rpm drive that comes with the x120e from flipkart. you can drop in an ssd if you want. the battery life is 6-7 hours under moderate to heavy usage.

    The screen flickering can be dealt with by upgrading to the latest drivers from AMD's website.
  20. s_anuj
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    s_anuj Privileged Users

    Got [font=arial, sans-serif]screen flickering once in the beginning but nothing since then. The Drivers + Bios probably fixed it.[/font]

    [font=arial, sans-serif]For the diff between x130 & X120... Not much change in the internals... see [/font]http://www.laptopmag...130e.aspx#specs

    but the weight goes up from 1.5kg to 1.7-1.8kg as it's supposed to be more durable. The extra padding results in a larger footprint as well: 293.4mm x 216.0mm x 32.8m (X130e) compared to 282mm x 210mm x 15.6 - 29.5mm (x120e)

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