I recently replaced my IBM / Lenovo Thinkpad T60 with a Lenovo Thinkpad T430. The T60 was a great all around laptop for school and basic productivity tasks and it was by far my favorite laptop of 2016. If you just need a cheap beater laptop (I bought mine for 10 USD off eBay) then look no further than the IBM T60.
However, my work flow is changing and I needed to change up my hardware to accommodate my increasingly mobile production environment. I bought a Lenovo T430 off ebay for $125, it came equipped with 4GB DDR3 RAM, an Intel i5 3230m dual core processor, 1366×768 TN display, and Intel HD 4000 integrated graphics. This is a great base configuration for a high end office machine but it’s just not enough for video editing.
In this video I am going to be upgrading this laptop with a quad core Intel I7 3612qm processor, 1600×900 tn display, back-lit keyboard, 9-cell battery, and I also attempted to upgrade the laptop with 16GB of DDR3 but unfortunately that did not go as planned. When all was said and done, I had a powerful and portable editing rig.
I know that I could have bought a new laptop with what I paid for the Thinkpad and all of these upgrades but that is not what I wanted. I wanted something that would last, something that will actually survive the day to day abuses of being thrown and smashed around inside a backpack. I wanted a Thinkpad, and that’s what I got.
If anyone is curious about how much I paid in total here is a quick list: 8GB of DDR3 from friend (I am returning the other stick) $30, Intel i7 $107, 9-cell battery $69, 1600×900 display $28 + $7 shipping, backlit keyboard $24, base laptop $125. Total = $390 Keep in mind that this is not the net cost to me because I am taking the old parts and reselling them on ebay, so I do make some money back (approx. $100 back).
Parts links and link to T430 seller:
8GB DDR3 (it worked, I just could not use it because of the RAM slot fiasco):
Amazon Affiliate link:
eBay partner link: