What is the Dell equivalent of a Thinkpad T-Series?
July 9, 2006 7:04 PM   Subscribe

What is the Dell equivalent of a T-series Thinkpad?

I need to replace my T41 and I can't make sense of the offerings on Dell.com. Inspiron is "Versatile", Latitude is "Professional". What I want is the super-small-but-not-X-series-small, ~14" super high-res screen. Most Dells I see around are either huge "desktop replacements" or the really, really small ones. Are any basically like a T-series?
posted by jeb to Computers & Internet (19 answers total)
Why not get a T43 or Lenovo T60? I've never considered anything, Dell or otherwise, up to the T-series reputation if you're looking for "the" business laptop.
posted by kcm at 7:06 PM on July 9, 2006

$1375 for a T60(!) and you're considering a Dell?

To each his own. sorry for the non-answer.
posted by Kwantsar at 7:16 PM on July 9, 2006 [1 favorite]

Or $1249. last post, I promise
posted by Kwantsar at 7:31 PM on July 9, 2006

Dell XPS M1210 is pretty similar.
posted by parallax7d at 7:53 PM on July 9, 2006

Response by poster: Kwantsar-- I'll probably end up getting another T, I just want to see what Dell's got. I'm also not really happy with the build quality of the last batch of these we got.
posted by jeb at 8:04 PM on July 9, 2006

The Latitude D620 is close.
posted by blue mustard at 8:22 PM on July 9, 2006

I'm also not really happy with the build quality of the last batch of these we got.

And you want to consider Dell as an alternative? Honestly, the only consideration that makes Dell attractive is on price.
posted by Mr. Six at 8:40 PM on July 9, 2006

I've got a Dell Latitude 9300, and it's by far the best laptop I've ever had. It's got this enormous 17" 1920x1200 screen, on which you can work on two document pages side by side.

You're right -- it's a desktop replacement -- but it's really quite light. Everyone looks at it in shock and then I ask them to lift it. I picked one of them up once I noticed about half of this group of consultants I work with was already using them.

Best way to shop Dell, btw, is to go through eBay. Anything else takes a few weeks.
posted by effugas at 8:42 PM on July 9, 2006


You really can't discount "Warranty of the Gods", i.e. "Onsite within 24 hours worldwide for three years".
posted by effugas at 8:43 PM on July 9, 2006

Best way to shop Dell, btw, is to go through eBay.

No. The best way to buy a dell is through their factory store, where you can get brand new machines for half the price you'd pay anywhere else.

In fact, most of those eBay Dells are just re-sells from the factory store. A lot of people use proxies to game Dell's inventory system, buy cheap and sell for a bit under MSRP.
posted by Civil_Disobedient at 9:23 PM on July 9, 2006 [1 favorite]

Oh, yeah, Blue Mustard is right, indeed. Check out this review that compares the T60 to the D610, which seems to be the 620's predecessor.

And I always thought that patience and fatwallet were the essential ingredients for saving money on a Dell.
posted by Kwantsar at 10:25 PM on July 9, 2006

I have an Inspiron 9300 with the lower-res 17" screen, and if you can handle the size, the weight's not bad. The one I have is very fast, and the newer 9400s are significantly faster. For all intents and purposes, you really can't tell you're even on a laptop. Because they're so big, they're absolutely unsuitable for use on an airplane, but perfect for a hotel room.

I don't think, however, that it's built like the T series used to be... my T20 is still chugging along after something like 5.5 years. The Dell feels a bit flimsy in comparison, but ... well, nothing has broken yet, which is a good sign. And it's fast enough to even play games on. And it was relatively cheap.

All Dell come loaded with crapware, though, so be prepared to do a lot of removing.
posted by Malor at 11:18 PM on July 9, 2006

I wasn't clear enough... they're not as light as the Ts, and they're much larger, but they're not particularly onerous to carry. If it's the WEIGHT that puts you off, the 9400s should be fine. If it's the SIZE, they'd be a bad choice.
posted by Malor at 11:21 PM on July 9, 2006

Dell makes awful laptops. Everyone I know who has had one has had problems.

I got my T41 from NewEgg for a couple hundred bux cheaper than IBM's website.
posted by radioamy at 11:42 PM on July 9, 2006

I've had 4 dell laptops and never a problem. I just got a XPS M1210 delivered last week and love it.
posted by Mick at 7:45 AM on July 10, 2006

I've got two 14.1" T42p laptops. I'll definitely be getting another Thinkpad. After seeing the D610/D620 in person I'd never buy one. The build quality is very poor on these.

I do recommend the 14.1 over the 15" Thinkpad as it's more compact.
posted by jeblis at 1:32 PM on July 10, 2006

I concur with everyone who says "buy an IBM" instead of Dell. Having owned both, I still have an 8 year old 380 series (!), a 5 year old T20, and a 2 year old T41p that still run great. I've had various Dell Inspirons and Latitudes over the years, and work in IT for a university that is exclusively Dell. Steer clear of Dell. If you must, don't get a consumer class notebook. Get the buisness class level. As an aside, if you buy IBM/Lenovo, get the onsite warranty. Lenovo's 3rd party repair contract (Solectron) sucks beyond belief.

IBM = Winner
posted by richter_x at 4:31 PM on July 10, 2006

The newer Dell Inspirons are better than they used to be. I just got a 14", 6lb Insprion (marketed in the UK as 630M, but the exact models are different in North America - this looks close), and I'm impressed with its solidity so far (2 months - but I'm rough on computers). I chose Dell to get the accidental insurance (I'm REALLY rough on computers), but I'm finding it already much tougher than I expected and as tough feeling as IBM laptops I have used.

If you go with a Dell, buy through their small business website, not the home one. I saved £100 that way (though I didn't get an inferior colour printer I didn't really want).
posted by jb at 5:46 PM on July 10, 2006

All my Dell laptops have been tough. They've survived some direct liquids into the keyboard by immediately turning them off, taking them all apart, and letting them dry. Not to mention a half dozen semi-serious droppings. They seem to match Thinkpads on the here-to-last aspect in my experience.
posted by sled at 2:38 PM on July 11, 2006

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