Summary: I purchased the W500 Thinkpad when it was released in 2008 and it's still going strong. This was my first Lenovo computer and it's been such a good experience that i just recently purchased the Lenovo Thinkcentre m92p desktop. I now basically always look to buy Lenovo first. I'm a technology worker and i can assure you that i put the w500 through it's paces, running some of the most demanding software on it such as the Adobe CS suite, Microsoft Visual Studio and more.
Summary: Worked well but encountered battery recognition problems with Windows 7. Would recommend if using a BSD, GNU/Linux OS distribution or older Windows version (I have not tested Windows 8 compatibility), otherwise not.
Excerpt: I just needed a cheap back-up laptop to my original Lenovo (not purchased from Staples). However: 1. The battery is bad, goes from 100% to 0% in <20 minutes with nothing open on the desktop, then takes hours to power up again. 2. Came with 2 GB RAM, not 4 GB. Aside from the fact that the description says 4 GB, Win7 just doesn't work adequately on 2 GB. 3.
Cons: Bad Battery, Flimsy Construction, Half The Ram Advertised, Ie Doesn't Work, Unreliable
Excerpt: I have bought returned Lenovo laptops from another source before, and was disappointed. The refurbs from Staples were in excellent shape, however, and work perfectly - comparable to new ones I have purchased directly from Lenovo. These have stickers on the letter keys of the keyboard, my only concern is how long these will last. Overall, an excellent value.
Summary: Don't waist your time. I go to a technology heavy university filled with nerds. Out of over a thousand students with the same school issued laptop not one student has anything good to say about lenevo thinkpads. My class got the w500 and it sucks. The fan has had to be replaced twice now, and the computer still over heats. If you like running creative programs then don't even bother. They randomly turn off, freeze and blue screen like crazy.
Excerpt: The first one we got lasted a week when the battery quit and would no longer charge, the unit itself worked fine while plugged into the wall, contacted staples.com and they promptly sent out a nother one and sent me the paper work for sending back the first onem and credited my account. all in all a smoothe exchange. So far the second one is working well.
Pros: Easy To Set Up, Easy to Use, Nice Unit Looks Like New, Quality Construction
Excerpt: The W500 offers tremendous value for the price point. Like traditional Thinkpads, the W500 has outstanding build quality that make the line a road warrior's dream device. The W500 is a big laptop. Not quite desktop replacement level, but it is heavy and large in size. You won't mistake this for a netbook. In fact, my netbook looks like a toy compared to the W500. The screen is high quality with high resolution support. Glare isn't an issue and view angles are superb.
Summary: Well it is an entry level workstation, but has a professional graphic card not the gaming one. Basically the different are the drivers. I think 15" widescreen is the good balance between portability and getting some work done on a good size screen. The version I ordered from Lenovo is almost max out with the newer technology. I use N draft at home with 5 GHz frequency. When I go to a coffee shop I have no problem connecting to G and B routers.