I got my x61s a couple months ago and the headphone jack was loose. Its only getitng worse. it still functions but slight bumps or wiggilng of the cable will make the sound pop or shut on and off. Some plugs are worse than others but they all go into the "mic" port snugly.
Is there an easy fix for this or am I going to have to ship the laptop off to have this repaired? I'm amost afraid to ship it for the simple fact that since the port still works (mostly) I could get denied warranty. And also that I cannot leave the Hard Drive in the laptop due to personal information on it (I have a spare hard drive I could put in for shipping?)
If the earphone jack has a wiggle and is loose where sound becomes intermittent, it can only mean a bad solder. Since the jack is soldered directly to the motherboard and if you still have a warranty, then it would be wise to send the laptop in for a repair - doing such a repair yourself may indeed invalidate the warranty on the machine.
Regarding the hdd and information stored on your laptop. You should make a backup of all information, remove the personal information from the HDD before sending in the laptop (if this is the course of action you decide to take). Lenovo will not accept a different configuration from that which was originally included in the machine, therefore, it is ill-advised to send a laptop in for repair with different components (aftermarket installations) - again, Lenovo reserves the right to refuse repair service based on this specific point.
If I may offer a suggestion. I would strongly suggest you get yourself a comparable-size 2.5" HDD and an external USB enclosure solely for the purpose of making/storing backups instead of playing around with CD/DVD media (much of these are unreliable for long-term storage). External USB enclosures (which are relatively inexpensive these days) are very portable, thus you may even take those along with you in your travels without worry of added weight - you'll only be gratified for the convenience of extra storage at a very reasonable price. Vantec and Ultra make very good laptop HDD enclosures, both available at any good box store or online (perhaps less expensive).