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10-15-2020

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Keyboard replaced -- and I no longer feel I have the excellent laptop I purchased

2020-10-15, 10:34 AM

So. I'm a writer and academic and I bought my ThinkPad X1 Yoga 3rd Gen 2 years ago.

The keyboard, the feel and ease of writing on it, was a massively important factor when I chose this PC. Recently the s-key on my keyboard stopped working, and a technician came to my house to fix it. After he left I discovered that parts of the keyboard no longer retracted properly into the top cover when the laptop was closed or flipped. In fact, it could not be fully closed anymore. He came back, and after that all keys kind of retracted, but I still felt that it was not like it used to be. I registered a new service case with Lenovo, who sent someone out with a top cover in which the keyboard was already integrated. I am now typing on this keyboard, but... it is just *not* the same.

 

I still feel like the keys do not retract as well as they did before when closing and flipping (it seems to close more loosely, not as tightly as before). And the keys are harder to push down. I have to use more force, which matters if you write 8-10 hours in a day (I have a major deadline coming up). I am constantly mistyping as I am used to having to only use the lightest of touches. I did some research and read this: https://www.tomshardware.com/news/lenovo-laptop-quality-control-issues,37510.html 

I asked the Lenovo customer support person for the name of the manufacturer of the keyboard I now have been given. It said DFN, which I have found out is Dafron. I was not able to find out which keyboard I originally had. 

 

Can anyone fill me in on the differences in keyboards/share experiences and preferences? Lenovo has said they have to take my laptop away for up to 10 days to 'fix' my 'technical problem'. But there is no technical problem. I just need a different kind of keyboard. What should I ask for? who should I ask? How can I be sure I get something like the one I had before? 

I worry they might just say 'well you've got a perfectly functioning keyboard!'. But this is my most important work-tool. This very part of the laptop. It's like that article says: I feel like I bought a luxury car and someone came and replaced my sensitive power-steering wheel with an old-fashioned, heavy Volvo-part. It's not the same product then. 

 

Any input is very welcome :) 

Many thanks for your help and advice

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3281 Posts

12-22-2008

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  • Message 2 of 19

Re:Keyboard replaced -- and I no longer feel I have the excellent laptop I purchased

2020-10-15, 15:14 PM

@ EDHuck wrote:
 

I still feel like the keys do not retract as well as they did before when closing and flipping (it seems to close more loosely, not as tightly as before). And the keys are harder to push down. I have to use more force, which matters if you write 8-10 hours in a day (I have a major deadline coming up). I am constantly mistyping as I am used to having to only use the lightest of touches. I did some research and read this: https://www.tomshardware.com/news/lenovo-laptop-quality-control-issues,37510.html 

I asked the Lenovo customer support person for the name of the manufacturer of the keyboard I now have been given. It said DFN, which I have found out is Dafron. I was not able to find out which keyboard I originally had. 

 

Welcome to the forum.

 

Unfortunately this is a common issue. Lenovo (and before them IBM) use parts from a variety of manufacturers, not only for keyboards but also for HDDs, SSDs, RAM, AC chargers, LCD panels, etc. They do this apparently because their large purchasing volume needs can't be met by a single supplier. I imagine this also gives them backup sources if one supplier runs into production problems.

 

For each type of component the part has to meet technical specs. These are objective. Subjective characteristics like feel, look, noise, etc. don't seem to matter. As a result the "same" keyboard may come from several manufacturers, they are interchangeable and yet each one feels different to the touch.

 

Lenovo Support should know who manufactured your original keyboard. I have no idea if they would share that information with you. Even if they did they may not have any replacement keyboards from that company in stock. That might explain why they replaced your keyboard with a different make. If the keyboard is Norwegian then perhaps they don't have as many different suppliers as for example English keyboards. And if the X1 Yoga is now 2 years old and they no longer sell systems with that specific keyboard then their inventory of replacement spares may be further limited to one supplier.


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98 Posts

11-01-2018

FR

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Re:Keyboard replaced -- and I no longer feel I have the excellent laptop I purchased

2020-10-15, 19:59 PM

Heya EdHuck

 

if you change the X ses in this link to your serial number, and under commodities select C-cover with keyboard it will show which keyboard was built into your machine and what equivalents are possible.

Then you could order it or at least tell them what you want.

 

Ciao, Han

 

https://pcsupport.lenovo.com/fr/en/products/laptops-and-netbooks/thinkpad-x-series-laptops/thinkpad-x1-yoga-3rd-gen-type-20ld-20le-20lf-20lg/20ld/20ldcto1ww/XXXXXXXX/parts/display/as-built

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Re:Keyboard replaced -- and I no longer feel I have the excellent laptop I purchased

2020-10-15, 20:00 PM

Thanks for helping me understand this. Although it is of course not the answer I hoped for, I will do as you indicate, and attempt to find out which keyboard I had originally, and request an identical replacement part. It might be that we have fewer options in Norway, but we also have very strong consumer laws, and I'd be inclined to place a formal complaint against Lenovo if this is not fully and properly resolved. I've read more about this topic this evening, and it seems so many are experiencing similar things that this would be warranted. 

Thank you again!

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98 Posts

11-01-2018

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  • Message 5 of 19

Re:Keyboard replaced -- and I no longer feel I have the excellent laptop I purchased

2020-10-15, 20:05 PM
Let us know if it worked, I am curious.
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  • Message 6 of 19

Re:Keyboard replaced -- and I no longer feel I have the excellent laptop I purchased

2020-10-15, 20:25 PM

Using @han47 's link and changing the country to Norway, I get this Parts List. Select "C-cover with keyboard" from Commodity Type to get just keyboards. FRU 01LX963 is "Ccover,SLV,KBD NO,CBL,DFN-FUYU." The NO is for Norway and DFN you know. I don't know what the other keywords like CBL and FUYU mean.

 

Further down the list is FRU 01YN923, "Ccover, SLV, KBD NO, CBL, CHY-FUYU." The CHY is for Chicony, another keyboard maker. I don't know what the difference is between FUYU and ZS at the end of these strings. The link claims they are "Equivalent." (But then why DFN-FUFU and DFN-ZS, as well as CHY-FUYU and CHY-ZS?)

 

This suggests there are two makers of the Norwegian version of this keyboard. Your experience with the original keyboard suggests it was made by Chicony. You could try to place an order for the CHY keyboard just to confirm that Lenovo has this in stock. Then if they do, you'll have a stronger case for insisting that they replace your DFN keyboard with the CHY.

 

I hope this helps.


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98 Posts

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  • Message 7 of 19

Re:Keyboard replaced -- and I no longer feel I have the excellent laptop I purchased

2020-10-15, 20:28 PM
If he enters his serial it says which keboard was originally mounted
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3281 Posts

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  • Message 8 of 19

Re:Keyboard replaced -- and I no longer feel I have the excellent laptop I purchased

2020-10-15, 20:31 PM

Yes, I realize that. I was just observing that since there appear to be only two manufacturers it's very likely the original one was CHY. Unless of course the FUYU and ZS are significant. However I agree the serial number should be conclusive.


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98 Posts

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  • Message 9 of 19

Re:Keyboard replaced -- and I no longer feel I have the excellent laptop I purchased

2020-10-15, 20:38 PM
The two FRU searched on Lenovo parts sales give no information on disponibility. The price however would be € 265. If I search for my parts it gives 0 or an other number for disponibility. My french backlit keyboard is a Chicony. I am happy with it.
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3281 Posts

12-22-2008

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  • Message 10 of 19

Re:Keyboard replaced -- and I no longer feel I have the excellent laptop I purchased

2020-10-15, 21:55 PM

The US parts ordering site shows both FRUs as "Out-of-stock, Estimated Ship Date 11/14/2020 or 30 days." [The date format is US, so 2020.11.14 in the rest of the planet.] 

 

CHY: https://lenovo.encompass.com/item/11588516/Lenovo/01YN923/

 

DFN: https://lenovo.encompass.com/item/11587985/Lenovo/01LX963/


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