06-22-2011 05:21 PM
The main reason why I chose the x220 tablet was for school purpose. Most of my classes are notes you buy from the teacher (40-50$ a booknote) or powerpoints which I have to print out (Around 800 powerpoint pages, 400 papers per class). So thread is a good thread for all the students out there.
I was a big fan of Asus for their good quality hardware and for their EEE pc brand. I had a netbook, with a 10 hours battery life. So battery was my main concern at that time. I was bringing it in the lab and loved it for its small size and long life battery. Then one day, I saw a new product from Asus at CES 2010, the ep121. I was like “wow, that tablet would be great for school!” I then did some research to find out more about it. That’s where I found the poor 3 hours battery. So I continued my research to find a tablet that would fill in this job. That’s when I found out about lenovos thinkpad tablet. I was impressed about the overall laptops but the x220 tablet stood out… 19 hours battery? I couldn’t find anything better. So I ordered it.
For all the students who think 1300$ is expensive, let me tell you this. How much do your texts books cost? From my experience, I spend 1-2 reference book, 3 text book and lots of prints out a semester. My spending would be around 200-300 $ every semester. Right now, with my tablet, I’m not buying or printing anything for school. I borrow my friend’s books, scan them (process that takes haft an hour per text book) and put them into one note. I can assure you that a tablet pc will save you money. After 3 years, my laptop is going to be paid from my school expenses; you also get a great laptop.
My experience up until now with the x220 tablet:
Taking notes with the laptop is great, the handwriting is awesome and very precise. There is some issues with the edges of the screen when you write but it’s not a biggie.
The battery life is okay… Im very disappointed with lenovos publicy where they say it could go up to 9 hours. My previous experience with Asus was truthful, when they said 10 hours, it was 10 hours. Right now, with my tablet, I get around 5-6 hours battery life which is still good but don’t expect more if you’re not getting the extra battery slice (200$).
The speed of the computer is very good. I have a desktop with a AMD phantom II 3,0 Ghz and this laptop can compete with it. I has a slow start, but as soon as it’s ready, it loads everything I need very quickly.
The fan noise is really good, I can barely hear it. This means the computer can sit on my lap for 5 hours without overheating! Good move Lenovo. As expected, if you enable turbo boost, the computer heats up very fast and drains the battery.
The overall touch experience is better than I thought, I use googletouch browser and go through pages very fluently.
Here’s some stuff I don’t like about the laptop…
· The screen resolution
· The multiple bugs with the touch screen and screen rotation
· The touchpad… Why put buttons under it? Useless… you have the buttons from the red track pad
· The touch on the edges
· The charger wire, feels loose…
· The keyboard is GREAT! Except for 1 thing… The Fn button should be where the Ctrl is… very annoying…
As you can see, there’s not much about this laptop I dislike. Some improvements could be applied.
Overall, I recommend this laptop for any students in university.
06-22-2011 06:19 PM
Thanks for the student's perspective. I'm currently waiting for mine and plan on using it in class as well. My previous setup was an SL410 with a Wacom Bamboo, so I can appreciate how awesome it is to cutout the paper from note taking process. I didn't progress quite as far as you with scanning textbooks though... baby steps I guess.
As for the Fn key, I read that you can change that in the BIOS. I'm sure someone more computer literate has already outlined exactly how to do this on the X220t. Not sure if the keys themselves are swappable though...?
06-25-2011 08:59 PM
Thanks for posting this. As a student, I almost bought the x220t, but instead went with the T420 because of three things 1) screen resolution, 2) 3yr Thinkpad protection for x220t was $200 more than all other Thinkpads, 3) outdoor screen is still unavailable.
You can probably disable the touchpad buttons in software if you don't like them.
You didn't mention anything about the IPS screen. Do you like it?
06-25-2011 09:33 PM
nibs, not sure what types of classes you are in but if you ever need to add tablet capabilities to your T420 then I highly recommend a Wacom Bamboo. I used it for Organic Chemistry and Linear Algebra and it worked awesome. The sunken TP keyboard lets you rest the Bamboo right on top of it so that you're not taking up any additional desk space in class.
matpl89, did you ever sort out the battery issue you were having? I was hoping to get upwards of 5 hours with OneNote, but that would suck to get <4 right out of the box.
06-26-2011 11:31 PM
I think the battery issue out of the box was from overusing it for a 20 hours straight on high performance. The system couldnt cooldown and was overheating. I bought 2 x220t, one for me and one for my GF. Were both in premed and all our classes are powerpoints. We use note and a PDF editor. As for the battery right now, it goes up to 6 hours 7 max (if wifi is off and brigthness is at 20%).
If I could chose between multitouch and the other screens, i would go for multitouch. When I use my laptop in tablet mode, i like to use my thumb to change between softwares (I put the desktop taskbar on the left).
I am planning to buy the extra battery slice in case of emergency when I need to use it! who knows I might do a longer shift at the hospital and need to use my laptop longer without a plug.
Right now my GF laptop gets a thermal sensor error every 3-4 days (that can be fixed by going into bios and removing battery) but I am planning on giving it back next time it does it... not very usefull.
06-26-2011 11:34 PM
If I could add to something I dislike about the computer... It would be the plastic rectangle they put on the area wheres the thinkvantage, mic, volume buttons. Im sorry to tell lenovo... but the plastic IS VERY CHEAP! It makes alot of noises when you touch it and feels cheap, I wonder whats under it.
06-27-2011 02:05 AM
Pubert, thanks for recommending the Wacom. I do not think it would be useful for me; however, it may be for others. I am in my final year as a law student. My desire for the x220t was because when I was in undergrad I mainly took notes on a Dell Axim x30 PDA because I enjoyed being able to write on the screen or draw things out when I needed. If I were to get a tablet, I want to be able to draw on the screen, like with Wacom's Cintiq. I also appreciated the PDA due to the long battery life and almost instant turn on compared to my Thinkpad at the time, a 14.1" PIII 500 Mhz A20m.
The other reason I considered the x220t was the 12.5" form factor allowing for a full sized keyboard and that I would not have the screen as a barrier in meetings, since I could use the it in tablet mode. Normally, I take a legal pad to meetings because I feel having a screen between the person I am meeting with is awkward. I also thought the x220t might be nice for causal reading of websites instead of having to balance a laptop on my knees on the couch. Finally, I wanted the outdoor screen as I like to work on things outside when we have sunny days here. I can manage on the T400 with brightness all the way up in the shade, but just barely. The T400 is mainly my other half's machine, which is why I ended up ordering the T420.
I think my ideal computing device would be an x220t with a higher resolution screen and an outdoor screen. Perhaps with a slightly slower and lower voltage processor so that the battery lasts longer. Since the outdoor screen is still not for sale I felt that I was better off taking care of some great deals on the T420 (HDD upgrade (plan to use as an external backup), RAM upgrade, extra 5% off in addition to education discount) for now. I hope when I am looking to purchase my next laptop in 3-4 years that the x220t has evolved into an outdoor readable screen version with a higher resolution screen, because I am sure I will still want a tablet.
06-28-2011 07:45 PM - edited 06-28-2011 07:47 PM
All I can say is that if I could afford something like this in college, I would've been extremely happy. It's excellent for notetaking purposes. I use it for meetings, field investigations, and writing reports at work.
I recommend getting some sort of screen protector to preserve the life of the screen. Photodon has some screen protectors for the X220T for sale. It takes some patience to apply, but it noticeably reduces glare and still works perfectly with both pen and touch input.