The ThinkPad SL300 range of notebooks from Lenovo runs several editions of Windows Vista and has a range of built-in wireless features: an adapter for connecting to any 802.11 wireless LAN, including 802.11n and an antenna designed for cellular data and GPS.
The SL array belongs to a new family of notebooks from Lenovo targeted at SMBs and comes in three different models namely the SL300, SL400 and SL500, distinguished initially by their screen width: 13, 14 and 15 inches respectively, and ranging in weight from 4.6 to 6.4 pounds.
The SL300 I tested offers a LED-backlight display for a much brighter screen image. The Bluetooth feature is another option that Lenovo has enhanced on this business machine and I must point out that I didn’t have any difficulties transferring files between my Nokia E90 and the SL300.
In fact what I discovered will be useful for SMBs, is that when mobile WiMAX cards become available and widely adopted in the Middle East region, Lenovo will offer this feature as an option for this family of machines.
Like many of its notebook models, Lenovo is leveraging its enterprise notebook reputation, and trying to expand into the SMB and consumer markets with feature rich and resilient business and consumer machines.
All three SL models in this series can be equipped with various models of Intel’s newest Core 2 Duo processors and the Intel Centrino 2 platform. The processor speeds range from 1.8GHz to 2.53GHz. Memory options range from 1 to 4GB, and disk from 80 to 320GB.
I would like to point out that if you are going to load business applications on your SL300, you should spec your memory to at least 3GB, and a hard drive capacity of above 120GB and a processor speed of at least 2.0GHz to get optimal performance.
The SL300 like the others in this family boasts Lenovo’s Active Protection System, which incorporates an accelerometer to sense a sudden drop and lock the heads of the hard drive to avoid damage.
In addition, Lenovo used a number of rugged features to toughen up the SL300 something that is increasingly becoming a norm in conventional business notebooks today.
With this is mind, the SL series has been designed with multimedia use in mind, since SMB customers typically use laptops for business computing by day and personal computing by night. The machine also offers HDMI/VGA support for watching high-definition video, and optional support for high-definition Blue-Ray recordable optical drive. It also comes with an integrated webcam.
What I found very interesting was its wireless signal detection feature which warns you if the signal strength is weakening.
With the SL300 starting at approximately US$800, this is value for money that mobile SMB executives should try out.
Lenovo recently released a trio of ThinkPad notebook PCs for the small to midsize business market, with multiple wireless connectivity options