fish tacos wrote:I need help deciding between the Toshiba Portege R800 line and the Thinkpad t420. I've done a lot of research and both get great reviews. I've also read this entire thread beginning to end (just providing an example of my dedication to research, although I learned a lot more about the Mac vs. Windows debate than I ever cared).
I'm not into gaming and graphics, so what I'm really after is durability and battery life. From what I've read, the Thinkpad is one of the most durable laptops out there while the Toshiba has superior battery life (at least between these two).
Depending on where I order them, price will be about the same. Pros and Cons essentially boil down to this: The Portege is slimmer/lighter/sleeker/sexier with a better battery, but people have freaked me out about its off-center keyboard and awkward typing experience. This laptop comes with a free Xbox though, which I have to admit is a major plus because I am currently without any type of gaming console. The Thinkpad has worse battery life and won't come with a free Xbox (not at the price I would get it), but is much more durable (I can be rough/clumsy) and provides a typing experience with which I am familiar and comfortable (using a 2007 Thinkpad R61 to write this very post). Thoughts and recommendations? Thanks for taking the time to read.
Get the T420s (slim). Use the Barnes and Noble link I posted above to price it.
It's slimmer than the X220 and noticeably smaller than the regular T420-- it's just slightly larger than the X220 in terms of width and length. However that is a good thing since the major complaint with the X220 is that your hands hang off the bottom of the keyboard ultimately forcing you to hold them up when you type or deal with carpal tunnel O.o
X220 Thickness 1.9cm to 3.46cm
T420S Thicknes 2.1 to 2.6
T420 Thickness 3.1cm
Thinkpad has the best keyboard. That is what you should be concerned with the most for exams. The T420s is pretty durable too given it's svelte package.
If you go with the T420S and want to keep its price down don't upgrade the HD or ram. Buy them on Newegg. I bought the T420s after deciding against a DV6 (bad keyboard but best performance for the buck) and a W520 (long battery life and great performance but a tank). I am pleased that I bought it. PM me if you want pictures of the unit next to everyday household objects so you can get an idea of the size of it.
I find my T420S gets around 3 hrs +15/20 mins hours of battery life with the brightness turned on to the highest but processor turned down. I'm going to buy one of those batteries for the disc drive. I thought I would use a dvd drive with it but with everything being available via download it was a dumb decision on my part to not buy it when it shipped. Plus, the drive and extra battery are hot swappable. It's a no brainier.