Lenovo ThinkPad Edge 11 review
Lenovo packs genuine power into this small, cheap laptop, and it comes with a choice of specifications
Review Date: 25 Nov 2010
Reviewed By: Tim Danton
Price when reviewed: £505 (£593 inc VAT)
Features & Design
Value for Money
With IT directors eking out every scrap of value from their budget in the coming months, we can expect to see a slew of cheap business laptops. Lenovo's is an 11.6in ultraportable - albeit barely scraping into this category - that prioritises battery life and power over sleekness.
Weighing 1.53kg and measuring 31mm at the rear, it looks and feels distinctly podgy. In fact, it's almost the same chassis as the ThinkPad X100e.
The similarities stretch to the D-SUB out and power socket either side of the protruding six-cell battery, and to their battery life: the X100e gave us 6hrs 34mins of light use; the Edge 11 6hrs 32mins.
The big difference comes inside, with a low-voltage 1.33GHz Intel Core i3-380UM replacing the lacklustre AMD Neo MV-40. And that transforms it. Where the X100e was essentially a netbook rival capable of only basic tasks, the Edge - with its 4GB of RAM - produced a fine 0.89 in our benchmarks.
You could just about use the Edge as a main PC, and its corporate credentials are enhanced by a Gigabit Ethernet port. Note, though, that there's no docking station port: you'll need to slot a USB docking station into one of the three USB 2 ports. One of those ports is powered too, so you can charge accessories even when the Edge 11 is asleep.
Lenovo includes a single 3.5mm jack, so Skype callers wishing to use the webcam should take note that their existing headsets may not work. A little incongruously, there's an HDMI port to go with the memory card slot for SD, MMC and Memory Stick/Pro media.
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