Blog log - 1st half of 2022
Last update : 17/2/2023
Well, it is quite some time since I've blog-logged, but real-life has kept me away from updating the site. So, there's plenty of updates here (at least for the site).
Thinkpad T470 early impressions
First, I'll start with some good news (at least for me). The cousin who asked for my help in Minecraft 2 years ago dropped me a Thinkpad T470 that his family no longer use, preferring to keep it used by someone well-known rather than gathering dust in some cabinet. My thanks to them aside, here's a few things that I immediately experience from using the T470 :
- The display I got is nice, but glossy (instead of matte, which is pretty common for pretty much all of my laptops, except for the touchscreen-toting Inspiron 5485). It's still 60hz, but the blame goes to the industry for not putting HRR displays on non-gaming laptops (until now).
12/1/2023 Update : The display I got broke, so I switched to a LP140WF3 SP D1 (which was apparently used by Razer Blade 14 RZ09-0130). It has matte finish & decent colors, but the whites are a bit warm compared to the last one.
- As for the keyboard... this thing's so good (I think it's somewhat better than the X220) that I got addicted to using it. Maybe the only bad thing I could think about it is the lack of backlight (or some ThinkLight stuff found on the X220 which shines a light from the top bezel onto the keyboard), but then again I usually type when the light's up (whether that be sunlight or lamp light), so not a major loss for me.
To clarify : There are keyboards with inbuilt backlight for the T470, but the one I got doesn't have it.
- Trackpad seems a bit less tightly fit compared to the X270. Still works like what I'd expect, but then the less tight fit worsens it IMO (which actually is caused by a loose screw).
- For I/O, pretty much a minor upgrade over the X270, with the sole USB-C port now being a Thunderbolt 3 (which will never be used to full potential as it will only be plugged to either a USB-C charger or a flash drive), and an extra USB-A that also relegates the HDMI port to the right side. There are concerns regarding the Thunderbolt port where its driver would kill itself by a software bug. Headphone jack is mounted on the right, which might not be the best for those who uses headphones with cable on left earcup, including me when I use my M50X on this laptop.
- I still haven't got used to the trackpoint (and unfortunately will never be), so I can't say much on the matter.
- The battery's pretty good at the time I got it, but there were 2 batteries - external & internal. Personally, the internal battery should be removed for a bigger external battery and/or added storage.
- Upgradeability & repairability is better than X270 - but not by much.
- For upgradeability, not much has changed except for an additional SODIMM slot, allowing it to go up to 64GB (using 2 32GB sticks) of 2400MHz DDR4 RAM (which is pretty much absurd, especially since T470 isn't going to be a gaming laptop without additional cooling, an external GPU stuck to its Thunderbolt 3 port, and maybe a high refresh rate monitor). The storage system is mostly unchanged compared to X270, except this time I get the version that uses 2.5' SATA instead of a caddy for an m.2 drive that fits the SATA drive slot.
- As for repairability, unscrewing the 2 screws (instead of having to pretty much disassemble the computer) found around the middle of the bottom shell frees the T470's keyboard & trackpoint after detaching some clips & connectors. 4 more screws & the entire back can be removed as well, revealing the motherboard that still has every port (except for Lenovo's proprietary slimtip charging port) soldered to the motherboard. It's not the Framework Laptop, but then again Framework still solders ALL of their USB-C ports, although those soldered ports are going to be used for Framework's USB-C based port extensions, so there's that as well.
In a nutshell, the T470 is a bigger & better X270. At least I don't have to replace its display & keyboard outright.
- As of 1/5/2022, I will pause the site's development, at least until I am done reviewing Forza Horizon 4 & 5 (maybe just 5). I need to take care of some real-life stuff as well, so there's that.
- Attempted to try me_cleaner on the X220, which backfired on me pretty spectacularly. The X220 no longer boots at the moment (I plan to get it fixed eventually). As a result, no me_cleaner usage is done on the X270, which I believe is too unfortunate.
- On the other hand, the keyboard & display replacement on the X270 is a mixed bag. While the new 1080p display is flawless (except for the somewhat unexpectedly small UI which I got used to quicky), the keyboard's pretty rocky - the replacement had a wobbly backspace & distorted G button. However, at the end of the day, at least the keyboard's not bad for a laptop keyboard. While I could debate the X220 has a better keyboard, the palmrest creaks as I type, so there's that as well.
As for the trackpad, it's just better, at the cost of a very unresponsive TrackPoint (which doesn't matter much to me anyway as I don't like using it IMO, but then again I had zero experience with them prior to the X220)
- Obtained a X270 & looking forward to try me_cleaner on it (with a SOIC-8 clip) as soon as I could. This also means I will eventually apply me_cleaner on my X220 (but not the G531GD as I couldn't find its SOIC chip)
Side note : My X270 unfortunately came with a busted space button, so I'll be replacing the keyboard while using me_cleaner on it whenever possible.
- App testings are currently paused, pending a revision in an attempt to make it more consistent & reproducible.
Initial blog-log post for 2022 (BTW happy new year, even though I'm >48 hours late). Not much to expect in 2022 (except another Greek letter probably abused sometime in the future).