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Lenovo Intros the Monstrous ThinkPad W700 275

Engadget recently got their hands on an early delivery of Lenovo's new powerhouse of a laptop, the W700. Aimed at graphic artists and photographers, this beast is designed to really pack a punch. No word on how much for the extra fusion generator to power it for longer than 20 minutes. "Containing enough computational artillery to level a small village, this for-creatives-only behemoth is designed for sheer pixel pushing ... and little else. The system packs in two features aimed at graphic artists and photographers which are fairly unique to a laptop: a built in Wacom digitizer just to the right of the trackpad, and an on-board color calibrator. But what's happening under the hood you ask? Well, for starters the 17-incher sports the first-ever Intel Quad Core Extreme CPU in a laptop (no word on speeds at this point) as well as the first showing of NVIDIA's Quadro FX 3700 graphics chipset (with a hefty 1GB of memory on-board). The workstation also serves up dual hard drive bays configurable as RAID 0 or 1 (SSD or traditional disk, naturally), up to 8GB of DDR3 RAM, and an optional Blu-ray burner. Of course, that's fully kitted out -- the W700 starts at $2,978 and moves skyward from there."
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Lenovo Intros the Monstrous ThinkPad W700

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  • Yes but.... (Score:4, Funny)

    by TechnoBunny ( 991156 ) on Tuesday August 12, 2008 @07:28AM (#24566045)
    ...can it run Vista/Linux/?
  • by Joe The Dragon ( 967727 ) on Tuesday August 12, 2008 @07:30AM (#24566059)

    Apple needs to step up and try to match this.

  • by EvanED ( 569694 ) <evaned@NOspAM.gmail.com> on Tuesday August 12, 2008 @07:36AM (#24566099)

    The Wacom tablet is on the right of the trackpad, a very inconvenient place for us left-handers. Just another example example of the man trying to keeps us down.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Urkki ( 668283 )

      Indeed. So where would you put the Wacom on this laptop, assuming you still have to be able to sell a lot of them to make it worth making them in the first place?

      (This is a serious question. Is there a solution?)

      • by 1u3hr ( 530656 )
        Indeed. So where would you put the Wacom on this laptop

        In the middle. Delete the trackpad. It has the traditional ThinkPad Trackpoint "nipple" in the keyboard: that, plus trackpad + Wacom = 3 pointing devices. I have an old ThinkPad X24 with only a Trackpoint, it's fine for running most software as-is.

        I don't see a slot for the Wacom pen, surely there should be a slot it clips into?

        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by Gr8Apes ( 679165 )

          I agree - why is there a trackpad? Surely that's redundant given the wacom tablet? But that's the least of this beasts problems.

          It weighs in at a minimum 8.3 pounds. Battery life is not stated, but, given the alienware "desktop replacement laptop" I'd bet a 2 hour battery life will cause this to weigh in at over 10#s easy.

          So, for comparison, a MBP 17" with same screen resolution and a 7200 rpm drive starts at about 2900. And you get 2-5 hours battery life (depending on what you're doing) at 1.5#s less weigh

      • Indeed. So where would you put the Wacom on this laptop, assuming you still have to be able to sell a lot of them to make it worth making them in the first place? (This is a serious question. Is there a solution?)

        How about leaving the track pad out completely, and using the nipple for mouse duties, or combining the track pad with the digitizer surface?

      • Re:Discrimination (Score:5, Insightful)

        by mrchaotica ( 681592 ) * on Tuesday August 12, 2008 @08:57AM (#24566767)

        So where would you put the Wacom on this laptop...

        Oh I don't know, on the screen [lenovo.com], maybe? You know, like a normal Tablet PC, which is exactly what this is except that Tablet PCs have bigger digitizers and work better because the strokes appear where the user actually drew them.

        I mean really, what kind of idiot would want this?! It's like getting a really tiny Intuos [wacom.com] when you could have had a nice big Cintiq [wacom.com] for less!

        • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

          by Urkki ( 668283 )

          I kinda think touch-sensitive displays are not an option for serious drawing... They'd start to wear out really really fast. And even a little visible wear on the display would be a show-stopper annoying for anybody doing serious graphics stuff... Not to mention all the fingerprints etc.

          Now if anybody here does serious visual work on a touch-sensitive display and knows fingerprints and wear are not a problem, feel free to correct me...

          • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

            by icegreentea ( 974342 )
            No. Cintiqs are used for serious drawing. The thing about Cintiqs is that they aren't touch screens. They're tablets with a LCD screen built you. You have to use a Wacom stylus. If they built the monitor like a Cintiq on a laptop, it would not be like a tablet PC at all. Stylus only. It would also make it a bitch to draw on. Screen would have to lock at angles, and you would have to counterweight the keyboard so when you press on the screen it doesnt flip over.

            In any case, serious artists use whatever tool
          • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

            by mrchaotica ( 681592 ) *

            Obviously this [wacom.com] is a figment of my imagination, then.

            But seriously, the answer is that it depends on the technology used. The pressure-sensitive screens (as on most PDAs) obviously wouldn't be all that durable, but some technologies (such as the Wacom one) allow the screen to be protected by a glass sheet. Scratching is not a problem because the tip of the stylus is made out of a softer material, so you replace the stylus tip when it wears out instead of replacing the screen.

            Incidentally, I own a Thinkpad X6

      • It's called a USB cord, that connects your Wacom tablet so you can use it with your left hand, right hand, or your foot if you want to. Seriously, why the f*ck is there a Wacom next to the trackpad? Who needs that? It's too small for any serious work and it will just get in the way. The last thing I need is to accidentally leave the wacom enabled and push every button on the screen when I rest my wrist on it while typing.

    • The Man ain't trying to keep you down. It's nothing sinister.

    • by tehcyder ( 746570 ) on Tuesday August 12, 2008 @08:54AM (#24566731) Journal

      The Wacom tablet is on the right of the trackpad, a very inconvenient place for us left-handers. Just another example example of the man trying to keeps us down.

      Just turn the machine through 180 degrees, and viola! the tablet is on the left hand side instead. Some further modifications may be needed, of course.

  • Discrimination (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Spad ( 470073 ) <slashdot@spad.[ ]uk ['co.' in gap]> on Tuesday August 12, 2008 @07:36AM (#24566101) Homepage

    a built in Wacom digitizer just to the right of the trackpad

    Ideal unless you're left handed and therefore cursed to spend all your time catching the trackpad while trying to write/draw anything.

    • Re:Discrimination (Score:4, Insightful)

      by Lumpy ( 12016 ) on Tuesday August 12, 2008 @07:44AM (#24566147) Homepage

      Nope not even ideal. I dont know of a single artist that would be caught dead using that tiny digi.

      a 8X10 Wacom is easier to pack in the laptop bag than a mouse... so adding a digi onto the laptop is like having spinner rims on the car.... useless and for show only.

      • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

        by Squapper ( 787068 )
        I am an graphic artist (3d/2d) and a Wacom smaller than A5 is quite useless for serious production.

        Also, i don't see when i would require a portable workstation (for that is what this monster is trying to be). Better to keep the field- and office-work seperate.
        I'd rather have my 24'' monitor too (even though the laptop's panel has quite nice resolution)
        • by Amouth ( 879122 )

          i would like to see them drop the pad they put.. make this more like a tablet PC and use wacom's digital display as the screen.. so you can spin it around and just use the whole laptop as the tablet

          i wish i could afford a wacome screen..

          • i wish i could afford a wacome screen..

            Here's a tip: Tablet PCs are no more expensive than an equivalent laptop and separate Intuos, and a heck of a lot cheaper than a desktop and a Cintiq.

            • by Amouth ( 879122 )

              for a quality tablet with good preformace they are more expensive than an equivalent laptop - most tablets don't have a high res screen and they are no comparison to the Cintiq when drawing on.

    • by Urkki ( 668283 )

      Ideal unless you're left handed and therefore cursed to spend all your time catching the trackpad while trying to write/draw anything.

      The secret, jealously guarded by a sect of IBM laptop fanatics, is of course to disable the cursed trackpad/touchpad frustrator device, and use the laptop the way laptops were meant to be used (in absense of a real mouse anyway), ie. using the red button of happiness.

      Please don't tell me this thing only has touchpad...?

      • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

        by Squapper ( 787068 )
        Red button?
        I guess you refer to "the clitoris".
      • Indeed, some of us also like to *just* disable the trackpad, while keeping the trackpad buttons live (Option "FingerHigh" "320" in xorg.conf). Instant 5-button tracking device! Very handy if you like to reprogram mouse input on your window manager :)
    • Well, a lot of laptops have a simple Fn+F* combination to disable the trackpad completely. I'm sure this laptop would support something like that. If it's not built into the laptop, I'm sure a software work around could be found.
      • Of course, the second I finished writing that post, I found this picture [engadget.com] which from my point of view looks like Fn+F8 is used to switch between the Wacom tablet and the trackpad. I think this would be most necessary anyway, to disable the tablet when you aren't using it, because it's right under where you would be resting your wrists when typing.
  • I'm guessing not many people will want one of these on their lap without heat resistant underpants so are they bundling a few pairs of (Lenova branded) heat-resistant undies?
  • by Evildonald ( 983517 ) on Tuesday August 12, 2008 @07:40AM (#24566121)
    Slashdot would like to thank our sponsors, Engadget.
  • by sakdoctor ( 1087155 ) on Tuesday August 12, 2008 @07:45AM (#24566157) Homepage

    I predict that by the end of this year Thinkpads will be twice as powerful, 10,000 times larger, and so expensive that only the five richest kings of Europe will own them.

  • Dammit! They could've made the first and the only laptop with SLI video card.

    Seriously, why not just attach a carrying handle to a desktop and strap LCD monitor on the side?

  • Funniest part? It's creatives who use Macs, exclusively. Having worked for many media companies, they only consider Macs. This beast will maybe find some gamers who like it. The rest--nah...
    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by smallcaps ( 941957 )
      creatives use OSX... which does run on a number of thinkpads already: http://wiki.osx86project.org/wiki/index.php/HCL_10.5.2/Portables#IBM.2FLenovo [osx86project.org]
      • Yes, it may "run" but nobody who works in a Manhattan publishing house (I've worked for two) is going to bother with some off market Chinese crap. They are going to have their company buy Apple Macs. In the new company I worked for, I was stunned and elated to see that even DEVELOPERS are moving to Macs--even if they only desire to run in Windows emulation mode.
        • Actually, most, if not all, of the notebooks and PCs in the world are manufactured in China and other countries of the Pacific Rim. Lenovo, in particular, has been making the IBM Thinkpads for years. It is only recently that they are being sold under the Lenovo brand rather than IBM. Odds are that your Manhattan publishing house friends are using "off market Chinese crap" with an IBM, Apple, HP/Compaq or some other name brand label on it. Oh, yeah, those Macs your developer friends are using were manufactu
    • by dyefade ( 735994 ) on Tuesday August 12, 2008 @08:15AM (#24566383) Homepage Journal

      *Looks around huge creative design agency office with around a 3:1 XP-PC:OSX-Mac split, all running CS3 collaboratively and scratches head.*

  • by ghmh ( 73679 ) on Tuesday August 12, 2008 @07:47AM (#24566183)

    ... (she's a graphic designer):

    "Ooooooh!" (based on in-built Wacom thingie). - Interest level: High

    Seconds later, "But it's not a Mac!" - Interest level: None

    • by J05H ( 5625 )

      Funny when all of the software that a designer uses daily is available on both platforms...

      I actually prefer Photoshop on Windows to the OS X version but YMMV. Blazing fast gaming-GFX card makes a huge difference in performance.

  • In other news, TSA agents are salivating of anticipation.

  • Left-handed users everywhere are cheering the W700, with its digitizer thoughtfully placed on the right so they won't inadvertently jog it when using the trackpad. "It might make more sense to turn the entire area in front of the keyboard into a trackpad/digitizer with software control," said Sandy Sinister of the Southpaw Liberation Army, "but instead they struck a blow for the cause! We're buying ten for our new HQ at Undisclosed Location."

  • by Bastard of Subhumani ( 827601 ) on Tuesday August 12, 2008 @08:33AM (#24566531) Journal

    Anyone interested in a digitiser probably already has one, and a separate one is more flexible and probably better than a fixed one.

    Analyzer schmanalyzer.

    Take those out and you have an OK power laptop.

  • Not sure what the Quad-core Extreme Edition is, maybe it's the latest and greatest, but the X3350 processor in my laptop is good enough for me. It only has 960GB of hard disk, which is a bit gutting, I was hoping for >1TB but they couldn't get the 500GB hard disks.

  • Color Calibration (Score:5, Interesting)

    by mbaciarello ( 800433 ) on Tuesday August 12, 2008 @09:07AM (#24566885)

    I deal with pictures occasionally in my job, and I've had to manually/ocularly calibrate my monitors more than once. Big pain, especially when you don't have adequate lighting in the room.

    The automatic calibration video really struck me as innovative, though nowhere close to game-changing, at least for a portable monitor. However, I don't understand where the system gets color information from.

    The laptop has a camera on top of the LCD, so if there were, say, a tiny mirror near the trackpad it could see the monitor when the lid's down; but I see no reflective surface in the keyboard area--how does it see the monitor ouput?

    Anyone care to share their take (or knowledge) on this? Just curious...

    • Probably will ask you to hold a sheet of paper with diagnostic patterns on it to figure out ambient lighting conditions, and then do a half assed job calibrating from there based on some values stored from the last 'proper' calibration.

      Or maybe it comes with a stack of mirrors to hold.
      • Oops, I forgot to mention the video [blip.tv] which shows (from the outside) how the calibration is done. I'm not sure if this link will work as the URL is a mess, but you can also find it in Notebook.com's original post [notebooks.com].

        No paper: Pantone's huey calibration software is run, the lid is closed and reopened a minute later.

  • High performance notebooks are going the way of the SUV - people are realizing being able to play Call of Duty 4 is largely useless when their laptop lasts an hour before dying. While there always will be people that "plug in", if you have the time to sit down and have a physical power socket nearby, a lot of the time you have the time to truck at the LEAST a monitor and a matx system there too (for only about twice the weight and half the price).

    This is why the EEE and mininotebook segment is succeeding, j

  • Well I was mildly intrigued about this when I read the headline and assumed they had integrated a WACOM screen into the display but that would have been just another tablet laptop with a CINTIQUE built in! Instead they give you the crappiest of WACOM tablets hammered into the right of the trackpad. I don't know anyone that uses a WACOM for anything professional that can stand anything less than the 6x8 size. Having thrown together a 12" WACOM display from an old 14x9 USB Tablet and a 12" HD LCD Display I

  • why is the drawing tablet situated for right-handers?

    most artists are left-handed. What a total fuckup.

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