How Many ThinkPads Are Too Many?

This article is a transcript of a video that you can watch by clicking the thumbnail below. Hence, certain statements may not make sense in this text form, and watching the video instead is recommended.


We say we buy ThinkPads because we do not have to keep upgrading to newer machines every other year, but then we waste all that money we save otherwise on ThinkPads we would probably never need. Everyone starts with only one ThinkPad, but many fall into the loop of acquiring machines they'd never need but one just can't have enough, can you? There's a fine line between "just enough" and "too many", but who's the best judge there?

How Many Are Too Many?

So how many are too many? I guess that depends on the person you're asking. If you ask me, a typical user can cover their entire computing needs with just a couple of machines, each serving a very specific purpose. By the way, I know ways to do that by spending less than what one would on a single machine. But then the diversity in features and characteristics of different machines can complicate the equation.

Problem with Having Spare ThinkPads

ThinkPads are amazing machines, and to me, they're more than just a computer. But then if you have spare ThinkPads that you barely ever use, it's a clear indicator that you do not need them in your fleet.

The way I maintain my fleet is that every one of them is configured identically to the other, so no matter which one I'd pick up for the day, I wouldn't have to worry about what software is available on the machine, and whether or not my data is synced. It's all taken care of. Sometimes though, major changes to my software configuration become a chore to sync across all machines to make sure I do not get unexpected behavior later on when I pick that machine sitting in the corner after a month. I also do not let a machine sit for more than a few weeks without warming it up and moving the battery charge level, ensuring it has a reasonable battery level before putting it back.

Then you'd need enough space to store them in a cool, dry place that's also dust-free. I usually do not prefer stacking them one over the other so that the chassis isn't under constant stress for long periods.

Also, the sight of too many ThinkPads in one corner isn't a usual one for most people, so that's another question that I have to come up with an answer for literally every single time it gets asked by a friend when they step down into my basement.

How I'm Downsizing

I'm downsizing my fleet immediately by only leaving the machines that I'd need for a reason:

  1. As we talked about in the last video, the X220 has to go in favor of my recently acquired X230. It isn't an easy decision for me, but I cannot own it all, at least at the same time.
  2. The W530 will leave in favor of the T15g Gen 2. The only thing I'll lose there is the optical drive, which I thankfully have in the Ultrabase X6 dock for my X61s, and the high-gamut screen that I can live without.
  3. The X1 Tablet Gen 3 will go as well, as my belief that a tablet would be a great complement to the X1 Nano didn't go far. I know I'll lose the stylus and digitizer touchscreen, but I think I can live with an external drawing pad. The X1 Nano is just too good to pick up any other machine for an on-the-go computing job.

The X61s will stay because it's the most unique ThinkPad I've ever owned, and I'd prefer to keep it for longer, preferably for the rest of my life.

So the X1 Nano is the primary machine, the X230 is for long typing sessions, the T15g Gen 2 is for serious firepower, and the X61s is for nostalgic light-weight computing. I think this is a well-balanced fleet and I'd like to focus on other things now.

ThinkPads I Wish to Own One Day

There are a few models that I'm still interested in owning someday, one of which is the X41 Tablet, and the other could be any AMD-based ThinkPad as I've never had one. I'm not in a hurry though, and I'd wait for a good deal, or an opportunity to rescue a neglected or abandoned machine and give it a new life.


I'm really grateful to God for blessing me with more computers than I need, but now it's time to lose the extra baggage and send these to people who can put them to good use.


That's all that I have for this video. Thanks for watching it till the end, may the maker watch over you, see you in the next video! And yes, "Free Palestine!".