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which is more reliable/ better value: t540p or w541?

2015-03-13, 0:47 AM

Which of the following configurations is a better value and/or is more reliable

1) T540p with:

-4th Gen Intel® Core™ i5-4330M (3MB Cache, up to 3.50GHz)

-Windows 7 Professional 64-bit (either originally or via downgrade rights from windows 8.1)

-15.6" FHD (1920x1080) With WWAN

-NVIDIA GeForce GT 730M 1GB (1GB? game-debate lists this as a 2GB card)

-4GB PC3-12800 DDR3L SDRAM 1600MHz SODIMM (planning on upgrading to 16GB later)

-ThinkPad TrackPad No Fingerprint Reader

-No Camera

-500GB Hard Disk Drive, 7200rpm, 2.5"

-DVD Recordable 8x Max Dual Layer

-No Smart Card Reader

-6 Cell Li-Ion Cylindrical Battery 56.16Wh

-65W AC Adapter - AG

-ThinkPad Wireless 2 x 2 BGN with Bluetooth

-Integrated Mobile Broadband upgradable

-1 Year Depot or Carry-in Warranty

Ports: Mini DP, VGA, 2 x USB 3.0 (1x always-on), 2 x USB 2.0, Ethernet, Combo jack,

Audio: Dolby® Advanced Audio™

Web Price:$1314.00




2) W541 with:

-Intel Core i7-4710MQ Processor (2.5GHz, up to 3.5 GHz, 6MB, 47W)

-Windows 7 Professional 64 preinstalled through downgrade rights in Windows 8.1 Pro 64

-Thinkpad W541 15.6" FHD (1920 x 1080), with WWAN

-W540 NVIDIA Quadro K1100M 2G (or W540 NVIDIA Quadro K2100M 2G[add $250.00])

-4GB PC3-12800 DDR3L SDRAM 1600MHz SODIMM (planning on uprgading to 16 or 32GB later)

-Thinkpad W541 No Fingerprint Reader, 3+2BCP (not sure what that is, but....)

-720p HD Camera

-Internal RAID - Not Enabled to Not RAID Capable

-500GB Hard Disk Drive, 7200rpm, 2.5"

-16GB M.2 Solid State Drive Double

-DVD Recordable

-6 Cell Li-Ion Cylindrical Battery 56.16Wh

-Country Pack AG with Line cord & 170W AC adapter

-Intel Dual Band Wireless 7260AC with Bluetooth 4.0

-Integrated Mobile Broadband upgradable

-1 Year Depot or Carry-in Warranty


Ports: Thunderbolt, 2 USB 3.0, 2 USB 2.0, VGA, RJ-45, 4-in-1 card reader, Express Card, Smart Card (optional) (??? I didn't see the option, but oh well...), headphone/mic combo

Audio: Stereo with Dolby® Home Theater®

Web price: $1639.00


Which is a better system/performance for the money? Which is better for moderate (2013 and earlier) gaming, video editing, XP mode, etc?

Is the performance upgrade of the w541 over the t540p worth the money upgrade?

Which will hold out better for 5-10 years? No CAD usage foreseen.  Would 32GB be necessary for the w541, or would 16GB be enough?

The camera is something I would gladly do without; its presence is a drawback. Same for fingerprint reader.



(Edited to add)

PS: If the t540p is the way to go, does it make sense, for a $55.00 price increase, to upgrade from a i5-4330m to an i7-4700mq? At that point, is the graphics card (Nvidia GT 730m) bottlenecking the processor, game, etc. so much that the CPU upgrade is a waste of money?

-----------IBM T40: XP PRO SP3, 14.1" 4:3 display, 512MB DDR RAM, 40GB HDD, ThinkLight, DVD.
Lenovo Ideacentre H215: AMD Athlon II X2 215, 500GB HDD, 4GB DDR3 RAM, 64-bit Win7, AMD 760G.
P50 i7, M2000M, 1x16GB RAM, 1080p, 512GB SSD, 500GB HDD, Backlight, 7Pro.

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Re: which is more reliable/ better value: t540p or w541?

2015-03-14, 10:06 AM

I have the T540p with the i7-4700. It is a strong machine and a CPU upgrade to the 4700 is worth the $50. A 4700 will perform the same in either laptop.
Grqphics cards are always the bottle neck. The GT730M can't do much so if graphics are a concern it's the W541. The W541 also has the new touch pad & thunderbolt, a bigger power supply and more of a workstation feel. That is attractive to me, but, if all you plan to do is spreadsheets and surf the T540p will go right through it.

If it didn't break the budget I would do the W541 with the i7-4810 cpu and the K2100M. I would complain about the price but I think I'd be happier with that config over the next three years.
Sixteen gig of memory should be good & focus on a fast boot drive.
If you call in the order they may give a $50 discount, if you ask.

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