I am an avid ThinkPad collector, having owned (at one point or another) more than 50 ThinkPads as of December 2014. The one that stands out as having the cleverest engineering is the 701c. This is because of the butterfly keyboard. As its name implies, they managed to fit a full-sized keyboard in the laptop, which folds up when the lid is closed. This was needed back then, since widescreen laptops didn’t hit ThinkPads until the Z Series in 2006. The butterfly keyboard was used in the film GoldenEye, and was easily distinguishable in coffee shops for the next few years. Quality-wise, the build isn’t the greatest – the 701’s are known for battery corrosion, board separation, and (worst of all) a CMOS battery that requires Torx screws to get at. However, it is really neat to open and close the laptop (although that resulted in the hinges breaking on 1 of my 2 butterflies). The 701c model had an active-matrix screen; the 701cs had a dual-scan, passive-matrix (DSTN) screen which was inferior. Both screens had a whopping 640×480 resolution.

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Category: IBM

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