Does the E320 a standard 2.5" Hard Drive? I've heard in a few places that it uses a thin 2.5" drive (7-9mm thick), and that a normal-height 2.5" HDD won't fit.
Lenovo ThinkPad Edge E320 (129834M) business laptop
A business laptop with good speed, strong build quality and an excellent keyboard
- Stylish and well built
- Excellent keyboard
- Battery life
- Touchpad and screen could be better
- Keyboard not backlit
- No USB 3.0
It may have a plain design, but Lenovo's ThinkPad Edge E320 is so nice even Mac fans can appreciate it. It's a business laptop with an excellent keyboard and it costs well under $1000 in its standard configuration. However, it could use a better touchpad and screen, and we'd also like a USB 3.0 port instead of eSATA.
Price$ 772.00 (AUD)
Buy now (Selling at 21 stores)
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The ThinkPad Edge E320 (129834M) is a 13.3in, Intel Core i3-based laptop that's designed for small business users. However, it's a great model for home users and students to consider as well: it has a decent features list, long battery life, it's very comfortable to use and it even looks good. There's not much wrong with this laptop at all, although we think its touchpad and screen could be better and we wish it came with USB 3.0 and a solid state drive as standard (a 128GB SSD is an option).
Design and user comfort
The Edge E320 is made out of hard plastic that feels soft and rubber-like, yet also quite smooth (and around 10 per cent of the laptop is constructed from recycled material). The unit has an understated design, and even the most determined Lenovo haters (Mac fans) in our office thought it looked good. We think it's one of the better looking Lenovo products and we're glad Lenovo hasn't gone overboard with its design. It's not the same as the first Lenovo ThinkPad Edge that we saw back in Fenruary 2010, but there are similarities, especially with the keyboard.
It's a laptop that feels good to use and it's comfortable to handle. At 1.8kg, it's not super-light, but it also doesn't feel heavy when you carry it around or use it in your lap. It ships with a power adapter that's around 100mm long and 30mm thick, so the whole package provides good portability. The 13.3in screen is held in place by strong hinges and it has a grey trim around the edges, just to make it stand out a little.
With the screen closed, the Edge E320 is about 28mm thick, but the base itself is around 21mm at its thickest point. You won't find an optical drive in the base, but you will find an HDMI port, VGA, Gigabit Ethernet, an SD card slot, a combination headphone and microphone port and three USB 2.0 ports (one doubles as an eSATA port and two of them can be used to charge devices even when the laptop is off). The right side of the base has a vent with a visible, thick copper heat sink and a fan is installed to keep things cool. The fan makes a slightly annoying whirring noise even when the laptop is being used to just browse the Web, and it gets a little louder when the CPU is under a full load.
It has a solid (and spill resistant) keyboard that is one of the best in the Australian laptop market. The keys are large and soft, they possess good travel and bounce, and they don't make too much noise when you hit them. There are a couple of keys in unusual positions though: the Delete key is three spots in from the top-right corner and the Control key is two positions in from the bottom-left corner. The BIOS allows you to swap the position of the Control and Function keys, allowing Control to become the corner key.
Other things that we like about the keyboard include the dedicated Print Screen key, the little Page Up and Page Down keys, which sit just above the left and right arrow keys; the reversed F-keys, which allow you to change brightness and volume and other system functions without having to press the Function key — this can be changed in the BIOS if you don't like it.
In addition to the keyboard, there are many other little details about this laptop's design that we appreciate. The power LED is inconspicuous as it doubles as the dot in the 'i' of the palmrest's ThinkPad logo. There aren't any bright LEDs on this laptop and it's a joy to use at night. However, we do wish that the keyboard was backlit — the spacebar actually has a backlight (or keyboard light) logo on it, but nothing happens when you press it in conjunction with the Function key — it's such a tease. There is no backlight option with this model.
The bottom panel of the Edge E320 comes off easily and we love the fact that the screws are designed to stay with the panel — you'll never lose them. The overall layout of the laptop is clean and all components are easy to access — you can even replace the CPU without too much trouble. There are two memory slots (one free), one 2.5in hard drive bay, a Wi-Fi module (a dual-band Broadcom 2x2 11a/b/g/n Wireless LAN PCI Express Half Mini Card Adapter) and a Mini PCI Express slot. The Mini PCI Express slot can be used to accommodate a solid state drive.
The construction of the ThinkPad Edge E320 is neat and it's a unit with easy-to-access components.
Next page: Performance, battery life and conclusion
You'll need a 7mm thick drive for the E320. You can remove a spacer from some SSDs (eg Crucial M4) to make it fit.
Jan is correct, the E320 will only fit 7mm thick drives.
Please, stop talking about removing the trackpoint from thinkpads or Lenovo will do it and that would be a great shame! Some people prefer it to the touchpad (me including) - once you get used to it, you find that it is much better than the touchpad :)
I agree with Earwik... The TrackPoint is, in my opinion, a far superior pointing device to a trackpad, and one of the reasons I keep coming back to Thinkpads again and again.
Lenovo, if you're reading this: please keep the trackpoint, a real competitive edge for a segment of the market (and a stylish dot of colour on the keyboard for everyone else).
FYI I bought an E320 in July and the attachment of the screen to the case has started disintegrating already, after about five months of usage. Not an adviseable laptop, basically it's a piece of shit. Too bad, otherwise it's great, but this just kills it.
I bought E320 from Thailand and had similar experiences as benjaminmarkus. The hinges got loose after few months. I tried to get it fixed by the Lenovo support but they said they will not do it.
I got the Lenovo because I trusted that the company creates great Thinkpads. Now I know not to get one of their products again. I'll also tell people to select something else.
I'm very, very disappointed customer.
I am posting on my E320 right now and it travels around with me and generally cops a beating bouncing around in the car/plane etc and is performing amazingly. the only thin I have changed on my laptop is the addition of an SSD which I had to dismantle slightly to get it to fit and a bit more ram. I have also disabled the trackpad in favour of the red dot as it saves mis-presses when you are typing and I just prefer it that way.
keep up the good work, there will always be a few people that talk negative about everything....
- battery life, weight
- trackpad is very unreliable
- • • •
Its mostly easy to use, battery life is great, light-weight. Great processor i5 for the price. However the trackpad is terrible, often does not respond to a single tap so need to tap again, however from forums I now find that other E320 users have the same issues and if they get it replaced on RMA the replacement is just as bad. OK the price was $500 but you get better trackpads on $250 netbooks so that is no excuse. Some people use the trackpoint instead so I may have to train myself to use that.
- you can play games, and use loads of software for buisnesses!
- lack of usb 3.0, intergrated graphics card so you can't upgrade that and a hard to use mouse
- • • •
This laptop is the best I have ever had so i recommend everyone else getting this laptop if they want a mac book but with windows xp/vista/7/8
- Fenruary :D
- Fenruary :(
- • • •
please correct Fenruary 2010 :D
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