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The new Lenovo ThinkPad sports the latest specifications and is easy to use as it comes pre-installed with a Lenovo Care software that give users total control over their notebook. It is perfect for SMBs that need a sturdy and reliable notebook for their daily liaisons with clients.


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The ThinkPad SL500 features the latest Intel Centrino 2 chipset, which means that this unit will perform faster and last much longer than its predecessors. It also comes pre-installed with Windows Vista Business with SP1 and sports an Intel Core 2 Duo processor P8600 running at 2.4GHz, 2GB of RAM, an Nvidia GeForce 9300M GS video card (256MB), and 250GB of storage space.

While appealing for some, the notebook’s glossy piano black lid is something business users may not fancy as it gets dirty easily. Lenovo has included various connectivity ports on the SL500, which includes a Firewire port, an SD/MMC card reader, HDMI-out port, four USB ports, headphone and microphone jacks, an Expresscard slot, as well as modem and Ethernet ports. The unit also comes with four (wireless, Bluetooth, battery, sleep) icons up front that notifies a user of the current status of the notebook.

The latchless design makes it easy to open the notebook, which reveals a well-spaced keyboard, the familiar Trackpoint nub and buttons, a trackpad, fingerprint reader and multimedia keys. This is in addition to its built-in web camera and microphone, and 15.4-inch antiglare TFT screen with a native resolution of 1650×1050.

 


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The unit is pre-installed with a couple of programs like Microsoft Office, Adobe Reader 8, Microsoft SQL Server 2005, PC-Doctor 5 for Windows, McAfee Install, and Roxio Creator Small Business Edition to get things started.

But in order to make things easy, the company has loaded the SL500 with its Lenovo Care software that acts as your 24/7 tech support. This program comes with functions like auto system updates, wireless configurations (find networks, power wireless on/off), device configuration, security and recovery programs (backup, restore, manage passwords and fingerprint), multimedia management, and provides a “Lenovo expert” to help you in case of emergency.

This software is easy to follow: just about any task you click on takes you to a proprietary interface that does all the work for you. Of course, if you know what you are doing, you can skip this program altogether and tinker around with the Windows settings yourself. But for users who are not technologically inclined, this program can very well do the job.

 


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The SL500 lasted for 93 minutes in our DVD test (with all settings set to maximum), which is normal for a notebook this size. But in order to fully maximise the battery life of the ThinkPad, users should set the battery setting to power saving mode.

The audio quality during our music and video test is nothing to write home about, but it certainly is not bad either. The screen is not reflective, which is a good thing as it does not cause viewing problems such as glare in well-lit areas.

Overall, the Lenovo SL500 is the perfect 14-incher for business users. It is easy to configure, features the latest Intel technology, and can withstand a hit, a splash, and even shocks to the hard drive. It is available now with an RRP of $1,499.

See page over for product specifications and pricing.

 

Lenovo ThinkPad SL500 274634M Product Specifications:

Software:
Adobe Acrobat Reader, ThinkVantage Rescue and Recovery, PC-Doctor diagnostics, InterVideo WinDVD Creator Business Edition and MYDVD, InterVideo WinDVD, ThinkVantage System Update, Sun JRE, Lenovo Care

Other applications:
McAfee VirusScan Plus with 30 days of virus definitions, ThinkVantage Fingerprint Software   

Operating System: Windows Vista Business

Display: 15.4-inch WXGA VibrantView TFT
Maximum Resolution: 1280×800   
Video card: NVIDIA GeForce 9300M Graphics Chipset (256MB)

Processor: Intel Core 2 Duo Processor P8600 Processor (2.40 GHz)
Memory: 2GB

Hard Disk Drives: 250GB

Optical Devices: Optical Drive Type DVD Recordable (Dual Layer) DVD Speed 8X Max
Network Card: Fax/modem 56K V.92 designed modem, Realtek Gigabit Ethernet (RTL8111C) Wireless Networking: 802.11n
Bluetooth: Version 2.0

Dimensions:
Height: 37mm
Depth: 260mm
Width: 358mm

Weight: 2.88kgs

Battery Type: 6-cell Lithium-Ion Battery

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Lenovo ThinkPad SL500 | Starts at $1,249 |  | www.lenovo.com.au

For: Tough construction; good keyboard layout; Non-reflective screen; Security software; Lenovo care for easy set-up and computer maintenance; Abundance of ports
Against: Piano black finish.
Conclusion: The perfect notebook clearly designed for SMBs.

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