Computers & Electronics

New Laptop Advice Needed - Thinkbook Or Switch To Mac?

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[OP]
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Jul 31, 2017
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New Laptop Advice Needed - Thinkbook Or Switch To Mac?

It is time to replace my Thinkpad, but I cannot decide which way to go so I am hoping for some advice please.

I am not the most technically adept person in the world, and use my laptop primarily for work (I'm a prof), school (finishing my PhD in a Humanities subject), and general web surfing. I am not a gamer nor a power user.

I am seriously considering this Thinkbook:

https://www.lenovo.com/ca/en/laptops/th ... 20WC000AUS

But at the same time I am also considering making the switch to a Mac and picking up one of the Macbook Air models with the new M1 chip:

https://www.apple.com/ca/shop/buy-mac/macbook-air



Is it worth switching to Mac? Is it better to stick with Windows since that is all I know? Which of these is likely to be better in the long run (I am thinking the Mac, plus it will have resale value when I next upgrade)? Is there anything else I should consider when making the decision on a new laptop?

Basically just looking for some guidance here as I am getting lost in this decision and am going back and forth.
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Nov 16, 2008
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SkynyrdsInyrds wrote: It is time to replace my Thinkpad, but I cannot decide which way to go so I am hoping for some advice please.

I am not the most technically adept person in the world, and use my laptop primarily for work (I'm a prof), school (finishing my PhD in a Humanities subject), and general web surfing. I am not a gamer nor a power user.

I am seriously considering this Thinkbook:

https://www.lenovo.com/ca/en/laptops/th ... 20WC000AUS

But at the same time I am also considering making the switch to a Mac and picking up one of the Macbook Air models with the new M1 chip:

https://www.apple.com/ca/shop/buy-mac/macbook-air



Is it worth switching to Mac? Is it better to stick with Windows since that is all I know? Which of these is likely to be better in the long run (I am thinking the Mac, plus it will have resale value when I next upgrade)? Is there anything else I should consider when making the decision on a new laptop?

Basically just looking for some guidance here as I am getting lost in this decision and am going back and forth.
We made the switch to Mac in 2013, and still have our mid-2013 MBP. Still runs extremely well, no reall learning curve and best of all no Windows to drive me crazy. You will likely get a half and half mix of comments on here, so you have to debate what you want most. The M1 Air's are getting great reviews
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May 11, 2009
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How old is your current thinkpad? What's your budget? Your tasks don't sound very demanding, though I can understand wanting to move on to something newer - NVMe drives and these newer gen chips are stupid fast.

Just a heads up: Thinkbooks are not thinkpads, most models outside the Thinkpad P, T, and X series are mediocre consumer-grade laptops with average to below-average build quality. In most cases I'd honestly stick with an older thinkpad over a newer non-thinkpad IMHO.

The newer Macs look promising, though I'm not a fan of Mac OS or the apple ecosystem in general. If you are existing iPhone user the integration with Mac is almost seamless and the hardware/experience does feel premium... and you pay for it handsomely.
"I possess a device, in my pocket, capable of accessing the entirety of information known to man. I use it to look at pictures of cats and get in arguments with strangers"
[OP]
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Jul 31, 2017
748 posts
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M1K3Z0R wrote: How old is your current thinkpad? What's your budget? Your tasks don't sound very demanding, though I can understand wanting to move on to something newer - NVMe drives and these newer gen chips are stupid fast.
I can't remember. Definitely more than five years.

My budget is $1500 max.

Just a heads up: Thinkbooks are not thinkpads, most models outside the Thinkpad P, T, and X series are mediocre consumer-grade laptops with average to below-average build quality.
Yes, I was aware of that.

In most cases I'd honestly stick with an older thinkpad over a newer non-thinkpad IMHO.

I've had to reload Windows a couple of times, and the battery isn't lasting that long any more. It isn't on its last legs yet, but I need something completely reliable for work and school.


The newer Macs look promising, though I'm not a fan of Mac OS or the apple ecosystem in general. If you are existing iPhone user the integration with Mac is almost seamless and the hardware/experience does feel premium... and you pay for it handsomely.
The only Apple product I own is AppleTV.
[OP]
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Jul 31, 2017
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I should also mention that the Surface Laptop 4 is an option as well.
Member
Jan 23, 2013
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You can't go wrong with any of the laptops you mentioned. I would recommend a 14 inch Lenovo laptop as the keyboards on the 13 inch models aren't as comfortable to type on. I would recommend the following $886 model.

https://www.lenovo.com/ca/en/perkopolis ... XTBXTMA400

Password: Perkp0p0l1$

Imo the perfect laptop around the $1k range. Aluminum build. Ryzen 4500u is more than enough and will be relevant for years to come. 16GB and touchscreen (anti-glare!) are really nice additions. The only downside IMO is the battery life which is around 8 hours of office use with battery saver on. 8 hours is very respectable but falls short compared to the bigger batteries in macs/XPS etc. Although those are nearly x2 as expensive.

Here's a $1189 model of the Yoga 7i 14" Intel model that comes with a much larger battery: https://www.lenovo.com/ca/en/perkopolis ... 8YGC701456
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Once you go Mac you never go back. The new M1 processor in Macs are absolute beasts and are a huge leap for apple. I just ordered a mac mini to replace my 8 year old macbook air.
Please respond
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Jul 7, 2020
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Thanks to this topic, it is also time to buy a new laptop for working at the small office.
Budget $1000.
I live in a small city (PEI), so I also concern about warranty policy. Dell, Lenovo or HP, which one is support better?

I like aluminum-built.
I also like AMD Ryzen because of a huge positive responses recently and the price is reasonable.
After digging here, I found some model:
1) Lenovo Ideapad series 5. There is someone here suggested Thinkbook, so the build -quality of Ideapad series 5 and Thinkbook, which one is better?
https://www.bestbuy.ca/en-ca/product/le ... 0/14892782

2) Dell Vostro 5502.
https://www.dell.com/en-ca/work/shop/la ... 2c5111tpca

Any advice, Thanks.
[OP]
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Jul 31, 2017
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CardinalComb wrote: Once you go Mac you never go back. The new M1 processor in Macs are absolute beasts and are a huge leap for apple. I just ordered a mac mini to replace my 8 year old macbook air.

The Ryzen 5 processors are right below the M1 and the Ryzen 7 are better.
[OP]
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Jul 31, 2017
748 posts
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Geoff2 wrote: You can't go wrong with any of the laptops you mentioned. I would recommend a 14 inch Lenovo laptop as the keyboards on the 13 inch models aren't as comfortable to type on. I would recommend the following $886 model.

https://www.lenovo.com/ca/en/perkopolis ... XTBXTMA400

Password: Perkp0p0l1$

Imo the perfect laptop around the $1k range. Aluminum build. Ryzen 4500u is more than enough and will be relevant for years to come. 16GB and touchscreen (anti-glare!) are really nice additions. The only downside IMO is the battery life which is around 8 hours of office use with battery saver on. 8 hours is very respectable but falls short compared to the bigger batteries in macs/XPS etc. Although those are nearly x2 as expensive.

Here's a $1189 model of the Yoga 7i 14" Intel model that comes with a much larger battery: https://www.lenovo.com/ca/en/perkopolis ... 8YGC701456


Thank you very much for that.

I was considering the Surface because of the manufacturer making the hardware and the software thing, but that would be limiting myself.

I was thinking 13" for portability, but was forgetting that A) I will end up doing a lot of typing on this (dissertation); and B) that I wear glasses so eye strain might be an issue with a smaller laptop. Maybe I should be considering 15" models as well.
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Nov 23, 2004
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Ontario
SkynyrdsInyrds wrote: I was thinking 13" for portability, but was forgetting that A) I will end up doing a lot of typing on this (dissertation); and B) that I wear glasses so eye strain might be an issue with a smaller laptop. Maybe I should be considering 15" models as well.
Consider the 14" Thinkbook perhaps!

I have the 13" - I love it, it's the best laptop I've owned. I actually went Mac -> Thinkbook on that purchase (it was just better bang for my buck - really strong performer and I'm getting tired of the Apple luxury price on all their devices these days).
My wife then bought the 14" - I almost wish I'd have gotten that one because it's still a very ultra portable size, but it has a little more connectivity (2x USB-C ports for better future proofing), and it also has a little nicer keyboard too (just a bit more key travel, which I find more comfortable when doing extensive amounts of typing compared to my 13").
My sister then bought the 15" - still a fantastic laptop, but as someone who likes to throw my laptop in my bag and take it places, travel with it, etc. I find there more appeal in the 13" and 14" models for that. I felt the 15" was losing some of that "ultra portable" appeal I was personally looking for (a matter of personal preference here).
[OP]
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Jul 31, 2017
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mindabsence wrote: Consider the 14" Thinkbook perhaps!

I have the 13" - I love it, it's the best laptop I've owned. I actually went Mac -> Thinkbook on that purchase (it was just better bang for my buck - really strong performer and I'm getting tired of the Apple luxury price on all their devices these days).
My wife then bought the 14" - I almost wish I'd have gotten that one because it's still a very ultra portable size, but it has a little more connectivity (2x USB-C ports for better future proofing), and it also has a little nicer keyboard too (just a bit more key travel, which I find more comfortable when doing extensive amounts of typing compared to my 13").
My sister then bought the 15" - still a fantastic laptop, but as someone who likes to throw my laptop in my bag and take it places, travel with it, etc. I find there more appeal in the 13" and 14" models for that. I felt the 15" was losing some of that "ultra portable" appeal I was personally looking for (a matter of personal preference here).


Yeah I'm looking at the 14" models now as they seem like a good compromise between my current 15" ThinkPad and the portability of the 13" models. The only problem is that the one I want doesn't ship for more than 12 weeks!
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Have a look at the Lenovo X1 Carbon. Maybe you can find a slightly older model thats within your price range. For your needs you do not need a Mac, they are overpriced and when it comes to repaired you are seriously limited on who can fix what which usually ends up going to an apple store and they tell you that they cant fix it and you need a new laptop. Have a look at some of the videos here - https://www.youtube.com/user/rossmanngroup he is a Mac repair specialist in new york & due to Apple restricting the sale of certain parts he can only fix so much now on newer macbooks.
[OP]
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Jul 31, 2017
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sickcars wrote: Have a look at the Lenovo X1 Carbon. Maybe you can find a slightly older model thats within your price range. For your needs you do not need a Mac, they are overpriced and when it comes to repaired you are seriously limited on who can fix what which usually ends up going to an apple store and they tell you that they cant fix it and you need a new laptop. Have a look at some of the videos here - https://www.youtube.com/user/rossmanngroup he is a Mac repair specialist in new york & due to Apple restricting the sale of certain parts he can only fix so much now on newer macbooks.
Older models won't work as I am pretty much set on an AMD Ryzen processor, preferably the Ryzen 7.
[OP]
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Jul 31, 2017
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The 14" Thinkbook seemed like a good compromise, but delivery is at least 12 weeks away. Because of that, I think I'll go for the 13" version, which actually has the benefit of having an even better Ryzen 7 processor than the 14" version. Since it is actually 13.3" I am not sure I will notice the 0.7" difference.

But I'll think about it for a couple of hours before making my final decision.
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Jan 23, 2013
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SkynyrdsInyrds wrote: The 14" Thinkbook seemed like a good compromise, but delivery is at least 12 weeks away. Because of that, I think I'll go for the 13" version, which actually has the benefit of having an even better Ryzen 7 processor than the 14" version. Since it is actually 13.3" I am not sure I will notice the 0.7" difference.

But I'll think about it for a couple of hours before making my final decision.
Trust me when I say that the difference between the 4500u/4700/u/4800u models is psychological. The marginal difference between the processors will only be realized if you are doing heavy workloads. I strongly recommend a 4500u or Intel i5 11th gen. In my opinion, the 13 inch models aren't worth it if you will be typing a lot.
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Get a Mac. It'll be uncomfortable for 6 months and you'll be annoyed at why there is nothing to tweak, optimize or fix, but post that it is absolutely worth it.

Plus if you don't like, you can always sell it a year later for like 75% of the NEW price
[OP]
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kramer1 wrote: Get a Mac. It'll be uncomfortable for 6 months and you'll be annoyed at why there is nothing to tweak, optimize or fix, but post that it is absolutely worth it.

Plus if you don't like, you can always sell it a year later for like 75% of the NEW price

I had one briefly, but got all technophobic and returned it.

There was some stuff about it that I found really irritating (software included that you cannot delete, hell you can't even change your mouse pointer), but some stuff that I thought was really well thought out.
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I’m probably in the minority, but I prefer Windows - it’s what I used growing up and professionally, and so takes no getting used to. We have some MacBook Pro (I think) from a few years ago and I never use it. Everything else we use is Apple though - multiple iPads and iPhones so go figure.
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SkynyrdsInyrds wrote: I had one briefly, but got all technophobic and returned it.

There was some stuff about it that I found really irritating (software included that you cannot delete, hell you can't even change your mouse pointer), but some stuff that I thought was really well thought out.
See that's the thing. You can't use it, expecting it to behave like Windows. That way you'll be constantly looking for ways to replicate your Windows experience and it 'll never really work. I spent a year trying out Finder replacements (Mac File explorer), just as I wanted Folders to be on Top, like in Windows. Unfortunately all those replacements were buggy and I wasted quite some time there.

Instead you should try to use it like you would a completely new OS and within 6 months, you won't be able to look back.

Also, Mac is technically running a Linux-ish (shoo BSD nerds... shoo) kernel, so one can do whatever. Yes you can even delete whatever App you'd like. Sure OSX may not like and may start to misbehave, but you can.

However, deleting apps, keeping a clean lean system, are Windows things. There is no reason to do them on Mac. It is not slowing your system or unnecessarily takin up resources, as there is no registry. No central DB hogging resources. Just simple plist(preference) files

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