updated 12:00 am EST, Tue February 23, 2010
Lenovo pro notebook gets faster USB
Lenovo as part of its launches today updated its highest-end ThinkPad W series with a few company firsts. The W701 is the first ThinkPad with USB 3.0 and should now support the 5Gbps standard for very fast external hard drives and future peripherals down the line. Its large case also now supports as much as 16GB of DDR3 RAM (up from 8GB) and should handle even very demanding visual editing.
The system still tops out at a quad-core 2GHz Core i7 and can be outfitted with as much as a Quadro FX 3800M for pro-level 3D rendering. Storage varies from a 160GB hard drive to a 128GB SSD. Lenovo still gives the notebook its signature palmrest tablet and in the W701ds has its slide-out 10-inch secondary screen. Either's main 17-inch display is 100 percent color-accurate in certain spaces and has a color sensor that automatically calibrates to different lighting environments.
A standard W701 starts at $2,199 for a quad 1.73GHz Core i7 and a Quadro FX 2800M. Moving up to the W701ds lifts the price to $3,799.
The lone desktop of the current pro offerings is the ThinkServer TS200v. Superficially a tweak to the regular TS200, it's the first Lenovo server with Intel's Active Management Technology (AMT) and gives IT administrators much more control over systems on a network. Systems can be checked outside of a fully active state, even when fully off; they can be recovered in the event of a failed OS without needing to have special software and will automatically fence off systems thought to be carrying malware.
The mini-tower itself is one of Lenovo's cheapest servers and starts below $400 with just a 2.26GHz Celeron. Hard drive and RAM capacities aren't available, but upgrades bring choices of a 2.8GHz Pentium and most of the Core i3 and i5 desktop range, including the 3.46GHz i5.