In shootout, Apple’s 13-inch MacBook Pro destroys Lenovo ThinkPad T440s

“Apple’s MacBook and Lenovo’s ThinkPad T-Series are two of the strongest dynasties in the computing space. Both have been built continually for at least seven years, both come in several different varieties, and both have repeatedly received high marks,” Matt Smith reports for Digital Trends. “Each line offers its own take on the small, ultra-portable notebook form factor. Apple’s entry is the MacBook Pro 13 with Retina, while Lenovo’s alternative is the 14-inch ThinkPad T440s. These systems are roughly the same size, have similar hardware, and are almost identically priced when equipped with identical specs. Either will serve a traveling professional well – but which is the best?”

“When put up against the Lenovo, it’s clear that Apple wins on curb appeal… The T440s is thicker, heavier and less attractive than its rival. The carbon fiber and magnesium body boasted by the ThinkPad may be durable, but it feels and looks a bit cheap, a problem most buyers will notice at first touch,” Smith reports. “You might expect the ThinkPad to make up for its aesthetic issues with improved functionality, but you’d be wrong.”

“Display: There’s not much room for argument here; the MacBook Pro 13 with Retina wins, end of story. The Mac’s 2560 x 1600 display offers more pixels, brilliant color and excellent contrast. While the T440s also has a quality screen, it simply can’t match the MacBook,” Smith reports. “An entry-level T440s sells for $950, which is $350 less than the MacBook Pro 13 with Retina. The base model lacks a 1080p display or a solid state drive, however, and has a slower processor. Upgrading the ThinkPad to parity with the Mac increases its price to over $1,400; a $100 premium over the entry level MacBook Pro 13 with Retina.”

“And that’s really the final nail in the ThinkPad’s coffin. Though it’s certainly not a bad laptop, it clearly falls short of the MacBook in design, display quality and overall performance,” Smith reports. “Apple’s current MacBook Pro lineup is surprising because there no longer seems to be an “Apple tax” applied to the price. Instead, the company is offering laptops that are not only well built, but also less expensive than the alternatives. Even the best PC laptops struggle to keep up with this latest Pro, and the merely good ThinkPad T440s can’t hope to compete.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: And Smith didn’t even mention that only Apple Macs can run all the world’s software while crappy Windows PCs are limited to a mere subset.

Related articles:
T3 reviews Apple’s 13-inch MacBook Pro with Retina display: ‘The Apple laptop to beat’ – November 8, 2013
The Register reviews Apple’s 15-inch MacBook Pro with Retina display: ‘Very much at the top of its class’ – November 6, 2013
Apple’s new MacBook Pro 15 with 4-channel PCIe offers blazing SSD performance – November 4, 2013
Apple unveils new MacBook Pro with Retina display featuring latest processors, faster graphics and longer battery life – October 22, 2013


    1. still, unfortunately, quite useful in many corporate boardrooms… which is why ANY serious Macbook traveller carries a vga port with them… in the form of a dongle. forget the dongle and your machine is a brick.

      Different strokes, different folks

      1. Dude, what board rooms are you going into. All our projectors have DVI or other connections. I guess I work at a place that isn’t stuck in the 90’s.

        Having adapters for our laptops or iPad, iPhone is a much better answer then strapping hardware advancement down to the lowest common denominator. I’ll bet you still resist using an HDMI cable for TV’s or surround sound systems also.

        Stick to your PC. I’m sure you are happy with a laptop made in the 90’s.

        1. In my experience (a couple dozen offices across four continents) if you walk into any boardroom in the world you *might* find a DVI or HDMI connection but you will always find VGA. If it’s sensible to carry a VGA adapter for your laptop then it’s sensible to have the port built right in there. One less thing to carry/mess around with/lose.

          Ad hominem attacks cheapen your point, btw.

  1. He also didn’t mention the spectacularly crap operating system on the stinkpad. A definite deal breaker for anyone enjoying life outside of the ever dwindling corporate IT doofus circlejerk.

  2. There was never an Apple Tax, only a perception given by unsustainable business models. Most of the computers the Mac’s were being compared to when people talked of the Tax were being sold at a loss by the company making them causing a perceived Tax of Apple products. But look at the state of those companies now i.e. Dell.

  3. The reviewer forgot to note that the Thinkpad is a PC and can run all versions of Windows as well as a plethora of Linux distributions and other operating systems. If you’re comfortable being locked in by MacOS, sure, the Macbook is the better choice. For a general-purpose computer, get the Thinkpad.

    1. Are you really that clueless that you are unaware that Apple notebooks can run all flavors of Microsoft Windows as well as all flavors of Linux, in addition to being a world class UNIX trademarked workstation in addition to being Apple OSX? Apparently you are.

      Perhaps you are also unaware it can do that all simulaneously WHILE still running OSX?

      1. Perhaps you’re unaware that pretty much any computer can do the exact same thing?

        There is no Mav versus PC. Macs are PCs. Thinkpad is a Lenovo machine, not a Windows machine and MacBook is an Apple machine, not a MacOS machine.

        1. Try and put OSX on a just any BIOS based laptop. . . try running OSX in a sandbox inside Windows of any flavor. . . or Linux. . . or any of those simultaneously with Windows.

        2. It is a hard enough to put OSX on a desktop not designed for it, much less a notebook. Then you want people to believe once you’ve accomplished that, it’ll be easy to get Virtual Machines to work on your Frankenstein laptop? Where are you going to find the correct drivers that will work and intercommunicate? Get UNIX certification? You reveal you monolingual ignorance by discussing MacOS . . . an operating system that last ran natively on Apple computers that stopped being shipped with it as the native booting OS TWELVE years ago, were discontinued EIGHT years ago and even emulation support of the MacOS end-of-lifed seven years ago. The Apple operating system is Apple OSX.

  4. Lenovo makes a pretty rock solid computer that can be worked hard, chucked out of a building and blasted into LEO.

    It’s to bad that the reviewer compared a list of specs instead of the actual computers…

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