Today is the 25th Anniversary of the iconic ThinkPad laptop, launched as the ThinkPad 700c on October 5th, 1992 by IBM. ThinkPad became a brand of the Lenovo portfolio when the China-headquartered company acquired IBM’s personal computer division in 2005.
To celebrate the 25th birthday of its commercial laptops brand, Lenovo organized an event at the Yamato Labs in Japan, where the 700c was born and unveiled the ThinkPad Anniversary Edition 25, a 25th Birthday limited-edition which is a “modern incarnation of the classic design”.

Price and availability

The new retro ThinkPad will be available on October 5th for $1,899 in limited quantities in a few countries. Lenovo will offer an exclusive discount on Lenovo.com on October 5th.

Overview by Kevin Beck from Lenovo:

Specs Highlights

Processor: Intel Core i7-7500U CPU
GPU:
Nvidia GeForce 940MX
Display 14”
Touch-screen full HD (1920×1080)
Extras: 
7-row backlit Classic Keyboard
Price:
$1899 (exclusive discount on Lenovo.com on Oct 5th)
Operating system:  Up to Windows 10 Pro
Memory: 16GB DDR4 RAM, 512GB PCIe SSD
Battery: 48Wh, up to 13.9 hours

Industrial Design (Retro, Iconic, great keyboard)

The design of the Anniversary Edition 25 is reminiscent of the original ThinkPad 700c released on Oct 5th 1992.

Original inspiration and  the red TrackPoint
Inspired by the Japanese bento box, the first ThinkPad was designed by Richard Sapper who was the brain behind the iconic red TrackPoint, a feature that the fans cannot live without . I have a friend who fits that profile, however, I am not able to use it effectively. The color of the TrackPoint was the topic of an internal debate between the corporate ID team who wanted a black system color and famous designer Sapper who insisted on keeping it red. They compromised on a magenta tone, which became a little redder with each iteration.

Classic Keyboard (very good)
Besides the TrackPoint, the keyboard is ThinkPad’s most famous and unique feature, beloved by the fans for good reasons. Lenovo revived the backlit 7-row Classic keyboard for the Anniversary Edition 25, which the manufacturer replaced in 2012 by an island-style design in its new ThinkPad T-series lineup. The ThinkPads are well-known for their keyboard quality that delivers great tactile feedback.
Additionally, the efficient key layout and the unique convex form factor helps professional type faster. Keyboard aficionados can read more detailed information in the classic keyboard vs. new 2012 design in the Laptopmag comparison review.

Brand logo
Lenovo brought back the original product logo, with the RGB color system, at the right corner of the computer, a placement that still lives in today’s ThinkPad latest models.

Iconic design, made for space
The ThinkPad 700C won tons of awards a few months after its launch, starting at COMDEX 1992 (the ancestor of CES) in Las Vegas. The device was sold out and U.S. President H. W. Bush gave a call to the CEO office to request a unit for his wife for Christmas.
ThinkPad laptops are famous for their durability and sturdiness. The next model, the 750C made it to space in the space shuttle Endeavour with the mission to repair the Hubble Telescope. The ThinkPad was loaded with photos of different telescope parts to help identification and repair.  Several hundred Thinkpads were used in various space missions since then.

ThinkPad laptops are famous for their durability and sturdiness. The next model, the 750C made it to space in the space shuttle Endeavour with the mission to repair the Hubble Telescope. The ThinkPad was loaded with photos of different telescope parts to help identification and repair.  Several hundred Thinkpads were used in various space missions since then.

Display (regular)

The original 4 by 3 aspect-ratio did not make it to the Edition 25, however, the 14-inch display gets a regular full HD resolution, an upgrade from the original 10.4” TFT display with VGA resolution (640×480).

Hardware & Performance (could use a better GPU)

The system features an Intel Core i7-7500U (15W TDP) main CPU with an entry-level GeForce 940MX discrete Graphics Processor Unit. This Core i7 CPU is often considered to be the best choice for both performance and battery life. Intel has a faster option with the Intel 7700HQ but that CPU has a 45W TDP, which means that it potentially consumes a lot more power (TDP is about thermal dissipation, but it correlates with power consumption).

The NVIDIA 940 MX delivers better performance than the Intel integrated graphics solution, however, it is less powerful than the newer GeForce 1050, or the new entry-level mobile GeForce 150MX (40% faster), the 2017 successor of the 940MX. Both GPUs are OK for most apps and 2D applications, but the performance gap will be visible with recent games and GPU apps such as video compression, physics and other heavy computing tasks.

It is important to note that the decision to design the 25th anniversary limited-edition device was made back in 2015, it could be the explanation why it features a 2016 mobile GPU model instead of the latest one in the same category.

Work in progress, this article will be updated with more information in the coming hours and days…

Filed in Breaking >Computers >Events >Reviews. Read more about Lenovo, thinkpad.

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