Lenovo ThinkCentre M58 review
Lenovo primarily makes PCs for business, and the M58 is no exception. It's covered by a generous three-year onsite warranty, which is great for this price.
The case is around the size of a biscuit tin, so it takes up very little space. Getting inside the M58 is easy: simply press a button and swing the top of the chassis up to reveal the interior. You can fit an additional 2GB of RAM for a maximum of 4GB. You'll have to use compact laptop memory, but the replaceable DVD writer and hard disk are standard desktop components. Due to the limited space, there's no room for additional internal storage devices. The 320GB hard disk looks meagre compared with the 500GB disks that dominate this Labs, but it's more than enough for office files. There are no PCI Express slots at all, though.
The M58 has an integrated Intel GMA 4500 graphics chip, which can't cope with 3D games. The M58 was near the bottom of the table in our application benchmarks, but it's not a slow PC - it suffers in comparison with the more powerfully equipped competition.
The M58's strength is its energy efficiency. It consumed a meagre 19W when idle and just one watt more when running our demanding suite of benchmarks. In comparison, Mesh's faster Matrix II 920 Nero used 120W when idle and 168W when running our benchmarks.
The M58 is usually sold without a monitor, but you can also buy it with a Lenovo 19in widescreen display. Its 1,440x900 resolution isn't as high as the 1,680x1,050 of monitors supplied with other £650 PCs, but it's fine for working on most office documents. Despite the VGA interface, image quality was acceptable.
Lenovo's ThinkCentre M58 is ideal if you want a money-saving, energy-efficient PC for office work. It's relatively expensive for the specification but has a long onsite warranty. If you can live without the warranty and the dual-core processor, Novatech's Ion is just as power efficient but cheaper at just £263.
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