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I don't even want to think about how much time I've spent these last few months, trying to find my next Laptop workhouse. Ask any IT Professional what they think of their current laptop and you're sure to get a passionate response, regardless of the sentiment! I'm a pretty demanding user who prioritizes power over portability and will not compromise screen and keyboard quality for distracting eye candy. After using the Dell Lattitude 830, the laptop provided by my employer these last several years, I knew I was looking for similar heft and build quality. I was told by more than a few people that I should go radical and sexy – maybe even go for the oh so trendy Apple Macbook Pro. After putting the Macbook Pro through its paces, and other laptops including the Dell Lattitude E5510 and HP Envy 15. In the end, reports of a stunning screen, blazing performance and a best-in-class desktop replacement experience sealed the deal for me and late last night I pulled the trigger on a fully loaded Lenovo Thinkpad W510. What pushed me over the finish line was coming across a coupon code (CAPSAVEINOCTOBER) online that gave me an additional 25% off! That meant an additional $589.75 off an already $479 limited time topseller discount direct from lenovo.com. Tack on free shipping and this was a deal I had to take…

To be perfectly honest, the discounts cancelled out the “Thinkpad price premium” that had up to now, kept me away. For me, getting a machine like this for under $1800 made this almost a no brainer. See for yourself – this is what I will be getting:

ProcessorIntel Core i7-720QM Processor (1.6GHz, 6MB L3,1333MHz)
Operating systemGenuine Windows 7 Professional (64 bit)
Operating system LanguageGenuine Windows 7 Professional 64 – English
Display type15.6″ Full HD (1920 x 1080) 16:9 aspect 95% colour gamut Anti-Glare display with LED backlight and WWAN antenna
System GraphicsNVIDIA Quadro FX 880M with 1GB DDR3 Memory
Pointing deviceUltraNav (TrackPoint and TouchPad) with Fingerprint Reader
Total memory4 GB PC3-10600 DDR3 SDRAM 1333MHz SODIMM Memory (1 DIMM)
KeyboardUS English Keyboard
Camera2.0M Pixel Camera
Storage SubsystemInternal RAID – Not Enabled
Hard drive500GB Hard Disk Drive, 7200rpm
Optical deviceDVD Recordable, Ultrabay Enhanced
System expansion slotsExpress Card Slot & 5 in 1 Card Slot
Battery9 cell 2.8Ah Li-Ion Battery – Dual Mode
Power cord135W AC Adapter – North America, Latin America (2pin)
BluetoothIntegrated Bluetooth PAN 2
Integrated WiFi wireless LAN adaptersIntel Centrino Ultimate-N 6300 AGN
Integrated mobile broadbandIntegrated Mobile Broadband – Upgradable

With 4 DIMM slots, 3 of which will be open, and easy to follow instructions on upgrading memory, I'll be able to get 16GB into this thing at some point later. I am also excited about the 1920×1080 FHD panel with 95% colour gamat. From the testimonials and reviews, I expect to be blown away. For a machine that I plan on using when I kick off my consulting gig in the new year, and being in front of for 50-60 hours most weeks…this is the type of rig I need.
For those who are wondering about the other competitors I took a look like – I can tell you that I really liked the Apple Macbook Pro – the problem is when running Windows 7, it ran hot and battery life dropped to half compared to when running Apple OS 10. It was also not nearly as fast a performance screamer as the W510, and oh by the way, would have cost over $600 more than the Lenovo. Sorry Steve, too steep a price to join the club. As for the Dell, performance was also unimpressive and the travel on the keyboard keys did not provide much tactile response for a 90+ WPM typer who still tends to pound away on his keyboard like he did on his Smith Corona electric typewriter back in the late 80's….
So now I'm counting the days….will consider doing an official “unboxing” segment to share with everyone my first look and impressions with my new “partner”…. the geek in me can't wait.
Have a great week and stay tuned for some follow up posts to the ME.Brand journey! Keep Making IT Work! and would love to hear from others on what laptops they swear by to help them do what they do best!
Cheers – Pedro

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Jim Love, Chief Content Officer, IT World Canada

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