01-06-2018 10:40 AM - edited 01-09-2018 01:14 PM
Shortly before Christmas Lenovo sent me a pre-production test model of the new mechanical side dock ThinkPad Pro Docking Station along with the new Thinkpad T480s for me to review. Review items are not packaged for sale. Often they arrive without instructions and/or without one or more production model components. Future reviews on production models will be more comprehensive.
ThinkPad Mechanical Side Dock Docking Station
The new side dock connects by just that: a slide-to-connect mechanism. According to specs the dock is designed to accommodate most 12, 14 and 15-inch ThinkPad laptops, I have not had a chance to try it with anything other than the T480s. More reviews will be coming in the future.
The following ports available:
Considering the dock’s compact size, compared with other brands’ older models that I’ve owned, this dock would be fairly easy to travel with for anyone needing to connect mouse, network, power, printer, and other peripherals. Similar to older Lenovo Pro docking stations, a lock is also included.
Pictured above is the ThinkPad T480s in silver. One nice thing I’ve noticed so far regarding the exterior, is that the paint seems to be more durable than the silver paint on my Lenovo YOGA 900 that has scratches caused by my moving it between various surfaces. As I was attempting to seat and secure the ThinkPad into the mechanical dock I wondered if the paint on the bottom would show any marks, but much to my surprise it is still as clean as when it was unwrapped from shipping.
Undocked the following basic Input/Output Ports are available on the T480s:
1 x Intel® Thunderbolt™
3 1 x USB-C
2 x USB 3.0
1 x 4-in-1 Micro SD card reader (SD, MMC, SDHC, SDXC)
1 x headphone and microphone combo jack
1 x HDMI
Additional specs on the model that I received:
Processor and Memory: 8th generation (Kaby Lake) Intel® Core™ i7 with vPro™ ( 2.10 gigahertz / 8650U)
256 kilobyte primary memory cache
1024 kilobyte secondary memory cache
8192 kilobyte tertiary memory cache
Multi-core (4 total)
Hyper-threaded (8 total)
Operating System: Windows® 10 Pro 64-bit Windows version 1709, Build 16299.125
Graphics and Display: Intel® HD Graphics 620 Display Adapter, NVIDIA® GeForce® MX150 with 2GB, GDDR5, Wide viewing angle & High density FlexView Display 2560x1440 Monitor (13.9” vis)
Camera: (without ThinkShutter) 720p IR Camera with dual-array microphone
Total memory slots 2
Used memory slots 1
Free memory slots 1
Storage 476 GB
Battery: Preliminary marketing specs for the T480s show up to 13.5 hours. For my quick tests I did not get that many hours of power, but taking into consideration that this was only a demo model and that battery life varies with settings, usage, and other factors, that is to be expected.
Audio: Dolby® Audio Premium™
Security: Touch fingerprint reader, IR Camera facial recognition, 2.0 Smart card reader, Kensington® lock slot
Display: 14" FHD IPS, FHD IPS touch, WQHD IPS Dimensions (W x D x H) mm: 331 x 226.8 x 18.45 inches: 13.03 x 8.92 x 0.72 Resolution: 1280x720 pixels
Weight: 1.32 kg / 2.90 lbs
WLAN: Intel® Dual Band Wireless-AC (2 x 2) AC Bluetooth® 4.1
WWAN: Integrated Global Mobile Broadband PTE-A (CAT9) Sierra Wireless EM7565 with Qualcomm® Snapdragon™ X16 LTE Modem
Watch this CES 2018 board for later reviews, and feel free to post questions.
I am not employed by Lenovo or Microsoft. I am a volunteer.
01-10-2018 11:20 AM - edited 01-10-2018 11:28 AM
Seeing the slim tip there is bewildering since it's gone from the 2018 laptops -- although it's still not clear what happens to the P machines since the USB C standard tops at 100W. Is this a harbinger of Lenovo going nuts and charging via two USB C ports?? Or they will simply continue using a different dock for the P series.
I see a USB C port; is that a Thunderbolt 3 chain port or does this thing just use USB C? Intriguing minds *really* want to know!
02-11-2018 12:24 PM
I believe the answer is negative; although there are two USB C ports, only one is used for display the other is used for data and the Ultra dock is still an MST hub.
You'd need a Thunderbolt-to-dual-display adapter like the tbt3-dp2x from Plugable and a full Thunderbolt implementation which is indeed the Carbon (in the 2018 lineup Lenovo shows whether Thunderbolt is x2 or x4, only x4 can drive two displays).
02-20-2018 12:12 AM - last edited on 02-20-2018 07:39 AM by zoltanthegypsy
Does anyone use a T480S already and can tell about the temperatures when the CPU is utilized heavily? Does it get hot? Is it noisy?
Moderator note: added post to existing T480s review thread. Subject edited to match thread. Was: How hot and noisy does a T480S get?
04-29-2018 02:33 PM
Does this new dock work with older thinkpads? I know that bottom port is removed on T480 but does dock have a bottom plug so I can connect T460p on this new dock? And then swap it for T490 latter and not change dock?
09-19-2018 12:51 PM
Has anyone successfully used this dock with a T480s drive multiple LCD screens via display port connections? I ask because I'm on my second device, and either there is a quality control problem at Lenovo, or I am doing something that is not supported.
09-19-2018 04:03 PM
What's the model of the dock? IIRC there are 3 side docks. Are you using direct DP to DP cables or perhaps DP to HDMI adapters?
The reason I ask: the Basic dock uses a USB-C to DP pass-through connection. If using an HDMI adapter, it must be active, not passive.
AFAIK this is not a problem with the Pro and Ultra versions. Acive or passive adapters can be used.
The large print: please read the Community Participation Rules before posting. Include as much information as possible: model, machine type, operating system, and a descriptive subject line. Do not include personal information: serial number, telephone number, email address, etc.
The fine print: I do not work for, nor do I speak for Lenovo. Unsolicited private messages will be ignored - questions and answers belong in the forum so that others may contribute and benefit. ... GeezBlog
09-19-2018 04:14 PM