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Lenovo T61 15" laptop

Lenovo T61 think vintage button

ThinkVantage Rescue and Recovery

Most Windows computers require you to press an F-key such as F8 to access the bios or boot in Safe mode. With the T61 and other ThinkPads, you hit the blue ThinkVantage button during startup. A whole menu of help, troubleshooting and support systems load to assist you: rescue files, access BIOS, diagnose hardware, boot from another device, use Norton Antivirus, open a Web browser, and more. This is highly superior to the typical two choices PC users get: boot to BIOS or start in some type of Windows mode (safe, safe with networking, etc.). Wonderful!

Graphics card

When shopping for a laptop, you might find yourself choosing between a motherboard with an integrated graphics or dedicated graphics cards/chipset. The summary of this is that integrated graphics uses less power resulting in longer battery life, but you may see jumpy video and slower drawing of images. In contrast, dedicated graphics uses more power, using up batteries faster. But for gamers, there is no practical choice other than dedicated graphics: it's a must have. Also, you will get no jumpy mouse while playing video. With current laptops with integrated graphics cards, you will see a jumpy mouse. The T61 has a dedicated graphics interface, and throughout our tests, all graphic display scenarios were fully responsive, without any perceptible delay.

Battery life

So then, what about that battery life issue? Here is the test environment we ran from a full charge: First, ThinkVantage's Power Manager lets you control various ways of reducing system-wide power consumption, and we had none of it enabled. So for example, the screen was set to never dim. Specifically, here is what we ran: 40 minutes of video, HD spinning 100% of the time, because emails come in once every few minutes, and I'm saving my work, etc. Other applications open: Word, Excel, Messenger, Outlook, Acrobat Reader, Internet Explorer. It was a total of 77 processes running, with only about two or three infrequently using greater than 5% CPU utilization. The rest of the time and for the rest of the processes: 0%. This is a fairly typical scenario. Much less frequently, users will be running very processor-intensive applications. Also much less frequently, users will run just one smaller application with few running background processes.

Test results

Using two batteries, the standard built-in battery and the Ultrabay battery: 3 hours, 33 minutes until 3% battery life remaining. One battery, only the the standard built-in battery: 2 hours, 30 minutes. If you need to get more battery life, turn off various power-using programs and settings.

Lenovo T61 Finger Print Reader

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