August 13, 2008

I can has monster laptop?

Lenovo has just trotted out the ThinkPad W700, a new portable (luggable?) machine geared towards pro photographers and graphic artists.  This warlock features:

 

  • Quad-core processor
  • Up to 8GB (!) of RAM
  • Up to three internal hard drives
  • Integrated screen calibrator
  • Mini Wacom tablet (!)
  • Both SD and CompactFlash card slots
  • 17" monitor with 24-bit Dream Color (2.3 million colors)
  • HDMI video output [Thanks to Bob Rose for the correction]
  • NVIDIA Quadro FX 3700

 

Adobe’s Robert McDaniels remarks, "With a 17min battery life and a mere 4" thick and 48lbs case, it also doubles as a space heater, pumping out 52K BTUs per min."  Reminds me of the similarly girthy ThinkPad I named "Battlepig" when I started on the Photoshop team.  I’m pretty fond of the Mac 17-inchers I’ve been rocking ever since then, but I’d love to see Apple answer the challenge (especially from the integrated tablet).  Engadget features more info and a video demo. [Via Tobias Hoellrich, from whom I snatched the subject line as well]

Posted by John Nack at 10:22 AM on August 13, 2008

Comments

  • Bryn — 11:27 AM on August 13, 2008

    Folks are also reporting on dell’s new round of precision notebooks, and while it hasn’t appeared on dell’s pages yet, they are saying that the M6400 will support 16GB of ram (and a 100% adobe RGB gamut LED backlit display)

  • Jonathan Perez — 12:41 PM on August 13, 2008

    Wow! What a true monster! what needs to be looked at is the implications this will have on the future of laptops (hopefully macbook pros). With 64-bit in the semi-mainstream and exiting technologies like Nahalem and Snow Leopard, the ability to add whopping amounts of memory great displays to system is great for creatives. It is funny how The mainstream consumer machine is an lightweight low power machines to get the web and the guys designing the things they see on the web have machines like this. These are good times to be a geek.

  • Andrew Smith — 1:44 PM on August 13, 2008

    But … does it come with a built-in drool tray??? :-P

  • Noel Hurtley — 1:47 PM on August 13, 2008

    My thoughts exactly. It’s an impressive accomplishment by Lenovo but when you demand this kind of performance isn’t it time to purchase a desktop computer and save a grand (or two)?
    Personally I love my MacBook Pro, it handles everything I throw at it with grace and it’s only five pounds and one inch thick. But I’d never do mission-critical work with it’s 15-inch TN panel or any other laptop’s LCD at this point. Let alone pretend it has the horsepower to handle video production.
    By the way, Battlepig is possibly the best name for a computer ever.

  • keith — 4:11 PM on August 13, 2008

    8lbs…
    According to notebooks.com, the good news is that: “But the W700 doesn’t feel as heavy as it looks.”
    And, Lenovo will begin selling the ThinkPad W700 in September with a base price of $2,978. High-end options will push the price north of $5,000.

  • mike smick — 5:35 PM on August 13, 2008

    I like the ‘warlock’ reference. Me thinks I spot a fellow Superbad fan.
    [Damn straight! ;-) --J.]
    On the other hand, Warlock could just be commonly used used to identify laptops over 60 lbs and I wasn’t aware of it.
    This laptop looks very nice.

  • A. Dias — 7:28 PM on August 13, 2008

    Whoever buys that will need a camel to carry it. Light weight is key. MacBook Pros do the job quite well, thank you.

  • Jerry Harris — 9:13 PM on August 13, 2008

    Details on Dell at…
    http://www.reghardware.co.uk/2008/08/13/dell_preps_quad_core_mobile/
    Both have 1 gig of vram for the gpu.
    The Dell has displayport connectors – maybe they support 30 bit color output when connected to their new monitors.

  • Claudius Coenen — 9:33 PM on August 13, 2008

    I wonder why they didn’t integrate the tablet functionality into the screen (like tablets do).
    Even if it can not be converted to tablet, the ability to paint directly onto the screen is awesome?
    I also think that the chosen place for the tablet is a little inconvenient for left-handed people.

  • Lauren — 9:58 PM on August 13, 2008

    Great article, I love your blog!

  • Anthony — 1:58 AM on August 14, 2008

    I notice that the Wacom tablet position is set out for right-handed people.
    [Where would you suggest they put it? --J.]
    Even now, some designers seem oblivious to the fact that a proportion of the world are left handed.
    [Well, I know that Wacom itself doesn't forget. The incidence of left-handedness among their customers is roughly double that of the general population (20% vs. 10%). That's why they include touchstrips and other controls on both sides of their tablets. --J.]

  • Josh Weisberg — 1:13 PM on August 18, 2008

    Having actually used the W700 for the last month, I can tell you that it:
    – Easily gets between 2 and 3 hours of battery life
    – Unlike the MacBook Pro, it doesn’t burn the hell out of your thighs.
    – Weighs a lot less than other 17″ notebooks while carrying a calibrator, tablet, 2nd hard drive, and CF reader
    – I too am a lefty, and the tablet works fine. Lenovo worked hard to make sure that the touch pad could recognize when a lefty was using the Wacom tablet
    – Is blazing fast. I was processing Canon 1Ds Mk III RAW files in CS3, and it was taking about 1 second to convert each image into a 16-bit TIFF.
    Frankly I’m just excited that a computer maker is actually thinking about photographers.

  • Rob McDougall — 3:58 PM on August 19, 2008

    I would trip over myself sprinting to the nearest store / computer with internet access if Apple bought out a MBP with an integrated trackpad.
    Infact, this ThinkPad running OS X would be perfect!

  • Tom — 12:59 PM on August 27, 2008

    Built-in tablet is a good fit for Microsoft, which has pushed the Tablet PC agenda (even though it’s not integrated into the screen).
    Not so much for Apple, which has done comparably little in the area of tablet or touchscreen computing. Apple seems content to live on its halo as far as Mac is concerned, and would much rather capture more of the cellphone market.
    [Given that they control both hardware and software, and given that they're developing all kinds of in-house knowledge of and appreciation for multi-touch interfaces, I continue to expect Apple to do something very cool in this space. (Of course, I have absolutely no inside info on the subject, as if I did I couldn't say anything about it.) --J.]

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