Notebookcheck

Lenovo ThinkPad T580 (i7-8650U, FHD) Laptop Review

Steve Schardein, 👁 Allen Ngo, 08/14/2018

Size matters. Lenovo’s 15-inch isn’t quite up to par with its smaller business offerings, but perhaps today’s configuration—a Core i7-8650U, 16 GB RAM, FHD anti-glare touch display, and NVMe SSD—can help to bridge the gap. We’ll find out in our full review!

While smaller notebooks are all the rage these days, some business users still demand a larger display and accompanying numeric keypad. Machines incorporating these venerable features may be thinning further with each new hardware generation, but Lenovo still provides a mainstream, top-end ThinkPad for the task: the 15.6-inch T580. A few months back, we evaluated a high-end T580 configuration featuring a Core i7, GeForce MX150 graphics, and a UHD display. This particular setup retails for close to $2,400 as of this writing—and while we were convinced overall by the quality of our test unit, we specifically regretted the heavy power consumption (and associated high heat and weak battery runtimes) as well as a lackluster overall performance from the UHD display.

But what if a dedicated GPU and an ultra-high-resolution display aren’t critical requirements? Perhaps a system with everything but those items (and correspondingly a smaller external battery) makes more sense for the average business user. That’s precisely what we’ll be exploring with today’s configuration, which swaps the dedicated GPU for vanilla integrated Intel UHD Graphics and the display for an FHD embedded touch panel. Elsewhere, the CPU has actually been bumped up to a Core i7-8650U and the RAM has doubled to 16 GB. The price with these options currently comes in at $1,887; is this the 15-inch business notebook to own?

Lenovo ThinkPad T580-20L9001AUS (ThinkPad T580 Series)
Graphics adapter
Intel UHD Graphics 620, Core: 300 - 1150 MHz, Memory: 1200 MHz, 23.20.16.5018
Memory
16384 MB 
, DDR4-2400
Display
15.6 inch 16:9, 1920 x 1080 pixel 141 PPI, yes, embedded on-cell touch panel, B156HAK02.0, IPS, glossy: no
Mainboard
Intel Sunrise Point-LP
Storage
Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB512HAJQ, 512 GB 
Soundcard
Realtek High Definition Audio
Connections
3 USB 3.0 / 3.1 Gen1, 1 USB 3.1 Gen2, 1 Thunderbolt, 1 HDMI, 1 Kensington Lock, 1 Docking Station Port, Audio Connections: 3.5 mm combo audio, Card Reader: 4-in-1 SD card reader, 1 Fingerprint Reader
Networking
Intel Ethernet Connection I219-LM (10/100/1000MBit), Intel Dual Band Wireless-AC 8265 (a/b/g/n/ac)
Size
height x width x depth (in mm): 20.2 x 365.8 x 252.8 ( = 0.8 x 14.4 x 9.95 in)
Battery
56 Wh Lithium-Ion, removeable, (32 Wh internal + 24 Wh external)
Operating System
Microsoft Windows 10 Pro 64 Bit
Camera
Webcam: 720p / ThinkShutter privacy filter
Primary Camera: 1 MPix
Additional features
Speakers: 2 x 2 Watt, bottom-mounted, Keyboard: ThinkPad AccuType chiclet-style, Keyboard Light: yes, 36 Months Warranty
Weight
1.958 kg ( = 69.07 oz / 4.32 pounds), Power Supply: 356 g ( = 12.56 oz / 0.78 pounds)
Note: The manufacturer may use components from different suppliers including display panels, drives or memory sticks with similar specifications.

 

Preliminary Notes

Since the overall design, connectivity, and input devices haven’t changed since the last review, we’ll be skipping directly to what’s new in this article. To quickly summarize our thoughts on these matters from previous reviews, however, we found that the build quality of the device—bolstered by the glass-fiber reinforced plastic—was very good overall, albeit a notch below the smaller Tx80 series machines (a trend we’ve found often holds true across most other business notebooks as well). The keyboard and touchpad are great (as expected), and plenty of connectivity options exist via the conveniently-organized side-mounted ports and standardized USB-C charging interface. Finally, as always, we appreciated the dual-battery “ThinkPad Power Bridge” design, which was convenient for quick hot swaps of the external battery in a pinch without having to power down or plug in.

One other note specific to today’s review unit: as you’ll see below, we recorded uncharacteristically low wireless transmit speeds, far below those of the previous test unit. This is very likely a bad antenna, however, as it clearly is a peculiarity of today’s machine.

For much more information on any of the preliminary items, don’t miss our previous review of the T580 from April or our T570 review.

SDCardreader Transfer Speed
average JPG Copy Test (av. of 3 runs)
Dell Latitude 5590
  (Toshiba Exceria Pro SDXC 64 GB UHS-II)
178.2 MB/s ∼100% +137%
Dell XPS 15 9570 i7 UHD
  (Toshiba Exceria Pro SDXC 64 GB UHS-II)
174 MB/s ∼98% +132%
Lenovo ThinkPad T580-20LAS01H00
  (Toshiba Exceria Pro SDXC 64 GB UHS-II)
77.8 MB/s ∼44% +4%
Lenovo ThinkPad T580-20L9001AUS
  (Toshiba Exceria Pro SDXC 64 GB UHS-II)
75.1 MB/s ∼42%
Average of class Office
  (10.2 - 191, n=232)
60.8 MB/s ∼34% -19%
maximum AS SSD Seq Read Test (1GB)
Dell Latitude 5590
  (Toshiba Exceria Pro SDXC 64 GB UHS-II)
203.3 MB/s ∼100% +141%
Dell XPS 15 9570 i7 UHD
  (Toshiba Exceria Pro SDXC 64 GB UHS-II)
192 MB/s ∼94% +127%
Lenovo ThinkPad T580-20LAS01H00
  (Toshiba Exceria Pro SDXC 64 GB UHS-II)
85.4 MB/s ∼42% +1%
Lenovo ThinkPad T580-20L9001AUS
  (Toshiba Exceria Pro SDXC 64 GB UHS-II)
84.5 MB/s ∼42%
Average of class Office
  (9.5 - 255, n=209)
78 MB/s ∼38% -8%
Networking
iperf3 Client (receive) TCP 1 m 4M x10
Lenovo ThinkPad T580-20L9001AUS
Intel Dual Band Wireless-AC 8265
664 MBit/s ∼100%
Lenovo ThinkPad T580-20LAS01H00
Intel Dual Band Wireless-AC 8265
638 MBit/s ∼96% -4%
Dell XPS 15 9570 i7 UHD
Killer Wireless-n/a/ac 1535 Wireless Network Adapter
525 MBit/s ∼79% -21%
Average of class Office
  (5 - 688, n=174)
458 MBit/s ∼69% -31%
Dell Latitude 5590
Intel Dual Band Wireless-AC 8265
328 MBit/s ∼49% -51%
iperf3 Client (transmit) TCP 1 m 4M x10
Dell XPS 15 9570 i7 UHD
Killer Wireless-n/a/ac 1535 Wireless Network Adapter
575 MBit/s ∼100% +364%
Average of class Office
  (34 - 688, n=174)
425 MBit/s ∼74% +243%
Dell Latitude 5590
Intel Dual Band Wireless-AC 8265
250 MBit/s ∼43% +102%
Lenovo ThinkPad T580-20LAS01H00
Intel Dual Band Wireless-AC 8265
162 MBit/s ∼28% +31%
Lenovo ThinkPad T580-20L9001AUS
Intel Dual Band Wireless-AC 8265
124 MBit/s ∼22%

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Display

While our previous review unit packed a UHD display, today’s machine trades it for an FHD (1920x1080) embedded touch panel. As with other embedded (also called “on-cell”) touch displays, today’s panel remains legitimately anti-glare, which is a huge boon for business users who can’t afford to wrestle with disruptive reflections while on the move. Unfortunately, apart from that notable positive, most everything else about the display fails to impress: colors subjectively appear washed-out, brightness is middling at best, and contrast seems rather weak.

The bottom of the display on our review unit exhibited fairly minor backlight bleed noticeable only on dark screens (see our photo below).

Subpixel array, ThinkPad T580
Subpixel array, ThinkPad T580
Minor backlight bleed
Minor backlight bleed
238.5
cd/m²
243.8
cd/m²
243.7
cd/m²
238.4
cd/m²
254.5
cd/m²
239.5
cd/m²
225.6
cd/m²
239.4
cd/m²
220.8
cd/m²
Distribution of brightness
X-Rite i1Pro Basic 2
Maximum: 254.5 cd/m² Average: 238.2 cd/m² Minimum: 2.77 cd/m²
Brightness Distribution: 87 %
Center on Battery: 254.5 cd/m²
Contrast: 943:1 (Black: 0.27 cd/m²)
ΔE Color 4.58 | 0.4-29.43 Ø6.2, calibrated: 4.34
ΔE Greyscale 3.3 | 0.64-98 Ø6.5
55% sRGB (Argyll 3D) 35% AdobeRGB 1998 (Argyll 3D)
Gamma: 2.403
Lenovo ThinkPad T580-20L9001AUS
B156HAK02.0, IPS, 15.6, 1920x1080
Lenovo ThinkPad T580-20LAS01H00
NV156QUM-N44, IPS LED, 15.6, 3840x2160
Dell Latitude 5590
NV15N42, IPS, 15.6, 1920x1080
HP EliteBook 850 G4-Z2W86ET
AUO35ED, TN LED, 15.6, 1920x1080
Dell XPS 15 9570 i7 UHD
LQ156D1, IPS, 15.6, 3840x2160
Response Times
-31%
-52%
2%
-28%
Response Time Grey 50% / Grey 80% *
33.2 (15.6, 17.6)
51.2 (24.4, 26.8)
-54%
53.2 (26.8, 26.4)
-60%
47.2 (26.8, 20.4)
-42%
46.4 (22.8, 23.6)
-40%
Response Time Black / White *
27.6 (14.8, 12.8)
29.6 (17.2, 12.4)
-7%
39.6 (23.2, 16.4)
-43%
15.2 (10, 5.2)
45%
32 (18, 14)
-16%
PWM Frequency
952.4 (99)
1000 (98)
199.2 (50)
980.4 (25)
Screen
36%
-6%
-52%
41%
Brightness middle
254.5
310
22%
243
-5%
338
33%
494
94%
Brightness
238
283
19%
234
-2%
341
43%
457
92%
Brightness Distribution
87
87
0%
83
-5%
90
3%
88
1%
Black Level *
0.27
0.24
11%
0.19
30%
0.81
-200%
0.34
-26%
Contrast
943
1292
37%
1279
36%
417
-56%
1453
54%
Colorchecker DeltaE2000 *
4.58
3.1
32%
6.6
-44%
10.9
-138%
5.2
-14%
Colorchecker DeltaE2000 max. *
17.99
7.6
58%
22.3
-24%
18.7
-4%
17.5
3%
Colorchecker DeltaE2000 calibrated *
4.34
2.2
49%
5
-15%
Greyscale DeltaE2000 *
3.3
2.3
30%
5.2
-58%
13.3
-303%
2.7
18%
Gamma
2.403 92%
2.21 100%
2.24 98%
2.11 104%
2.1 105%
CCT
6355 102%
6876 95%
6990 93%
16030 41%
7038 92%
Color Space (Percent of AdobeRGB 1998)
35
59.1
69%
39.2
12%
53.8
54%
71.2
103%
Color Space (Percent of sRGB)
55
90.1
64%
60.8
11%
83.4
52%
98.8
80%
Total Average (Program / Settings)
3% / 25%
-29% / -13%
-25% / -43%
7% / 29%

* ... smaller is better

Our measurements corroborate our initial thoughts. With an average brightness of just 238.2 cd/m² across the panel (over 40 cd/m² below the UHD panel’s 282.9 cd/m²) and a merely decent contrast ratio of 943:1 (versus 1292:1 on the last review unit), there isn’t much to get excited about here. For basic office use, these values are fine, but in brighter lighting the inadequacies quickly prove evident.

Color coverage is, in turn, even worse than previously. While the UHD panel turned in a disappointing (but still acceptable) 90.1% of sRGB, today’s panel can hardly muster 55%. Correspondingly, only 35% of the AdobeRGB spectrum is covered, which is vastly inferior to the HP Elitebook 850 G4 and Dell XPS 15 displays (53.8% and 71.2% of AdobeRGB respectively). It’s too bad that a better FHD panel doesn’t exist for those uninterested in splurging for 4K resolution but hoping for adequate brightness and color reproduction nonetheless, but unfortunately, this appears to be a trend across nearly all ThinkPad T-series machines.

vs. sRGB
vs. sRGB
vs. AdobeRGB
vs. AdobeRGB
vs. ThinkPad T580 UHD
vs. ThinkPad T580 UHD
vs Latitude 5590
vs Latitude 5590

Color accuracy is better, with DeltaE values of just 4.58 and 3.3 for ColorChecker and Greyscale respectively, pre-calibration. The CCT Average of 6355 and total gamma measurement of 2.403 are also very good values.

Color analysis (pre-calibration)
Color analysis (pre-calibration)
Saturation sweeps (pre-calibration)
Saturation sweeps (pre-calibration)
Grayscale analysis (pre-calibration)
Grayscale analysis (pre-calibration)
Color analysis (post-calibration)
Color analysis (post-calibration)
Saturation sweeps (post-calibration)
Saturation sweeps (post-calibration)
Grayscale analysis (post-calibration)
Grayscale analysis (post-calibration)

Display Response Times

Display response times show how fast the screen is able to change from one color to the next. Slow response times can lead to afterimages and can cause moving objects to appear blurry (ghosting). Gamers of fast-paced 3D titles should pay special attention to fast response times.
       Response Time Black to White
27.6 ms ... rise ↗ and fall ↘ combined↗ 14.8 ms rise
↘ 12.8 ms fall
The screen shows relatively slow response rates in our tests and may be too slow for gamers.
In comparison, all tested devices range from 0.8 (minimum) to 240 (maximum) ms. » 58 % of all devices are better.
This means that the measured response time is similar to the average of all tested devices (25.6 ms).
       Response Time 50% Grey to 80% Grey
33.2 ms ... rise ↗ and fall ↘ combined↗ 15.6 ms rise
↘ 17.6 ms fall
The screen shows slow response rates in our tests and will be unsatisfactory for gamers.
In comparison, all tested devices range from 0.9 (minimum) to 636 (maximum) ms. » 21 % of all devices are better.
This means that the measured response time is better than the average of all tested devices (41 ms).

Screen Flickering / PWM (Pulse-Width Modulation)

To dim the screen, some notebooks will simply cycle the backlight on and off in rapid succession - a method called Pulse Width Modulation (PWM) . This cycling frequency should ideally be undetectable to the human eye. If said frequency is too low, users with sensitive eyes may experience strain or headaches or even notice the flickering altogether.
Screen flickering / PWM not detected

In comparison: 53 % of all tested devices do not use PWM to dim the display. If PWM was detected, an average of 8929 (minimum: 43 - maximum: 142900) Hz was measured.

One lone positive over the UHD panel is that today’s FHD display exhibited no PWM at any brightness level.

Outdoors, the display predictably struggles even in spite of its matte finish: brightness is simply overpowered by any degree of sunlight. Viewing angles at least are not a problem in the slightest.

In the sun
In the sun
In the shade
In the shade
Wide IPS viewing angles
Wide IPS viewing angles

Performance

The ThinkPad T580 is configurable with CPUs ranging from the dual-core Core i5-7200U up to the quad-core Core i7-8650U alongside dual-channel RAM configurations up to 32 GB in total capacity. GPU options include either the conventional Intel UHD Graphics 620 or dedicated NVIDIA GeForce MX150 (with 2 GB GDDR5 VRAM). Whereas our review unit a few months ago included a Core i7-8550U with 8 GB RAM, today’s candidate bumps it up to a Core i7-8650U and doubles the RAM to 16 GB. However, today’s machine trades the dedicated MX150 GPU for on-chip Intel UHD Graphics 620.

Before we get to our performance benchmark results, we should mention that we experienced only a slight reduction in processing speeds while operating unplugged (a drop to 1807 in 3DMark 11 versus 1966 while on AC power), as well as no issues with DPC Latencies even with all wireless radios active.

CPU-Z CPU
CPU-Z CPU
CPU-Z Caches
CPU-Z Caches
CPU-Z Mainboard
CPU-Z Mainboard
CPU-Z Memory
CPU-Z Memory
CPU-Z RAM SPD
CPU-Z RAM SPD
GPU-Z
GPU-Z
JetStream
JetStream
LatencyMon
LatencyMon

Processor

Cinebench R15
Cinebench R15

The Intel Core i7-8650U in today’s review unit is a quad-core SoC with a clock rate ranging between 1.9 GHz and 4.2 GHz. As with all of the other CPU options (both 7th and 8th-generation Intel Core i5/i7), it carries a TDP of 15 W, but as we’ve seen in the past, with regard to the Kaby Lake Refresh CPUs, more expensive is not necessarily better (depending on the implementation, power provisions, thermal headroom, and particular firmware of the device).

That’s unfortunately precisely what we discovered with today’s review unit, where the Core i7-8650U actually performed below that of the previous T580 (equipped with the Core i7-8550U), even with the latest BIOS installed. While single-core operation is essentially neck-and-neck (and on par with the average of recorded scores in our database for all Core i7-8650U-equipped devices), Cinebench R15 multi-core scored today’s unit just 605 points, which is 9% below the 660 points of the previous unit and also slightly (1%) below the current average for that CPU.

To be fair, the Core i7-8550U T580 could only have been described as an overachiever, as it outstripped its corresponding CPU average by a whopping 14% in the multi-core test. But contributing further to this slight disappointment is the fact that—as before—we once again witnessed what appeared to be an 80 °C long-term temperature limit (after the initial 95 °C sprint is finished), but unlike last time, the machine fails to recover to normal performance once performance drops in today’s review unit. As our graph below illustrates, the tenth run of Cinebench R15 multi-CPU in our sustained performance test sees a considerable drop to the 448 – 478 range of scores, nearly 20% below the initial highest score of 590. All subsequent runs remain in this range.

Thus, unless other variables are in play, it seems that the i7-8650U-equipped T580 we’re reviewing today possesses no true CPU performance advantages over the previous configuration. In light of that, we’d recommend saving your money and springing for the i7-8550U instead.

Cinebench R15
CPU Single 64Bit
Dell XPS 15 9570 i7 UHD
Intel Core i7-8750H
175 Points ∼80% +5%
Average Intel Core i7-8650U
  (137 - 178, n=14)
169 Points ∼78% +2%
Lenovo ThinkPad T580-20L9001AUS
Intel Core i7-8650U
166 Points ∼76%
Lenovo ThinkPad T580-20LAS01H00
Intel Core i7-8550U
163 Points ∼75% -2%
Dell Latitude 5590
Intel Core i5-8250U
145 Points ∼67% -13%
HP EliteBook 850 G4 Z8W50EA
Intel Core i5-7200U
129 Points ∼59% -22%
Average of class Office
  (20 - 178, n=478)
108 Points ∼50% -35%
CPU Multi 64Bit
Dell XPS 15 9570 i7 UHD
Intel Core i7-8750H
1251 Points ∼29% +107%
Dell XPS 15 9570 i7 UHD
Intel Core i7-8750H
1215 Points ∼28% +101%
Dell Latitude 5590
Intel Core i5-8250U
696 Points ∼16% +15%
Lenovo ThinkPad T580-20LAS01H00
Intel Core i7-8550U
660 Points ∼15% +9%
Lenovo ThinkPad T580-20L9001AUS
Intel Core i7-8650U
605 Points ∼14%
Average Intel Core i7-8650U
  (447 - 675, n=16)
599 Points ∼14% -1%
HP EliteBook 850 G4 Z8W50EA
Intel Core i5-7200U
329 Points ∼8% -46%
Average of class Office
  (36 - 1050, n=482)
318 Points ∼7% -47%
Cinebench R15 CPU Single 64Bit
166 Points
Cinebench R15 CPU Multi 64Bit
605 Points
Cinebench R15 OpenGL 64Bit
97.8 fps
Cinebench R15 Ref. Match 64Bit
47.63 %
Help
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Cinebench R15 CPU Multi 64 Bit

System Performance

Fortunately, a strong CPU result isn’t the sole constituent of a fast machine, and our PCMark synthetic performance results are evidence of that—where today’s T580 (helped along by its lower-resolution display, in fairness) bests the previous configuration and tops most of the performance charts across both PCMark 8 and 10. Subjectively, we never encountered any notable performance stutters or hangs, either.

PCMark 10
PCMark 10
PCMark 8 Home Accelerated
PCMark 8 Home Accelerated
PCMark 8 Work Accelerated
PCMark 8 Work Accelerated
PCMark 8
Work Score Accelerated v2
Lenovo ThinkPad T580-20L9001AUS
UHD Graphics 620, 8650U, Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB512HAJQ
5038 Points ∼77%
Average Intel Core i7-8650U, Intel UHD Graphics 620
  (3926 - 5200, n=7)
4822 Points ∼74% -4%
Dell Latitude 5590
UHD Graphics 620, 8250U, SK hynix SC311 M.2
4670 Points ∼72% -7%
Dell XPS 15 9570 i7 UHD
GeForce GTX 1050 Ti Max-Q, 8750H, Toshiba XG5 KXG50ZNV512G
4418 Points ∼68% -12%
Lenovo ThinkPad T580-20LAS01H00
GeForce MX150, 8550U, Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB512HAJQ
4063 Points ∼62% -19%
Average of class Office
  (1226 - 5428, n=303)
3953 Points ∼61% -22%
Home Score Accelerated v2
Average Intel Core i7-8650U, Intel UHD Graphics 620
  (3216 - 4103, n=9)
3768 Points ∼62% +1%
Dell Latitude 5590
UHD Graphics 620, 8250U, SK hynix SC311 M.2
3757 Points ∼62% +1%
Lenovo ThinkPad T580-20L9001AUS
UHD Graphics 620, 8650U, Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB512HAJQ
3728 Points ∼61%
Dell XPS 15 9570 i7 UHD
GeForce GTX 1050 Ti Max-Q, 8750H, Toshiba XG5 KXG50ZNV512G
3631 Points ∼60% -3%
Lenovo ThinkPad T580-20LAS01H00
GeForce MX150, 8550U, Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB512HAJQ
3145 Points ∼52% -16%
Average of class Office
  (1169 - 4458, n=355)
3009 Points ∼49% -19%
PCMark 10
Digital Content Creation
Dell XPS 15 9570 i7 UHD
GeForce GTX 1050 Ti Max-Q, 8750H, Toshiba XG5 KXG50ZNV512G
5605 Points ∼56% +84%
Lenovo ThinkPad T580-20LAS01H00
GeForce MX150, 8550U, Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB512HAJQ
3116 Points ∼31% +2%
Lenovo ThinkPad T580-20L9001AUS
UHD Graphics 620, 8650U, Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB512HAJQ
3050 Points ∼31%
Dell Latitude 5590
UHD Graphics 620, 8250U, SK hynix SC311 M.2
2953 Points ∼30% -3%
Average Intel Core i7-8650U, Intel UHD Graphics 620
  (2117 - 3174, n=9)
2846 Points ∼29% -7%
Average of class Office
  (320 - 3503, n=97)
2524 Points ∼25% -17%
Productivity
Dell XPS 15 9570 i7 UHD
GeForce GTX 1050 Ti Max-Q, 8750H, Toshiba XG5 KXG50ZNV512G
7037 Points ∼73% +3%
Lenovo ThinkPad T580-20L9001AUS
UHD Graphics 620, 8650U, Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB512HAJQ
6809 Points ∼70%
Average Intel Core i7-8650U, Intel UHD Graphics 620
  (5271 - 7142, n=9)
6433 Points ∼66% -6%
Dell Latitude 5590
UHD Graphics 620, 8250U, SK hynix SC311 M.2
5940 Points ∼61% -13%
Average of class Office
  (1444 - 7142, n=97)
5372 Points ∼55% -21%
Lenovo ThinkPad T580-20LAS01H00
GeForce MX150, 8550U, Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB512HAJQ
5079 Points ∼52% -25%
Essentials
Dell XPS 15 9570 i7 UHD
GeForce GTX 1050 Ti Max-Q, 8750H, Toshiba XG5 KXG50ZNV512G
8429 Points ∼79% +6%
Lenovo ThinkPad T580-20L9001AUS
UHD Graphics 620, 8650U, Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB512HAJQ
7951 Points ∼75%
Average Intel Core i7-8650U, Intel UHD Graphics 620
  (6877 - 8733, n=9)
7827 Points ∼73% -2%
Dell Latitude 5590
UHD Graphics 620, 8250U, SK hynix SC311 M.2
7459 Points ∼70% -6%
Lenovo ThinkPad T580-20LAS01H00
GeForce MX150, 8550U, Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB512HAJQ
6891 Points ∼65% -13%
Average of class Office
  (2683 - 8787, n=97)
6799 Points ∼64% -14%
Score
Dell XPS 15 9570 i7 UHD
GeForce GTX 1050 Ti Max-Q, 8750H, Toshiba XG5 KXG50ZNV512G
4966 Points ∼64% +26%
Lenovo ThinkPad T580-20L9001AUS
UHD Graphics 620, 8650U, Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB512HAJQ
3933 Points ∼51%
Average Intel Core i7-8650U, Intel UHD Graphics 620
  (2403 - 4066, n=9)
3642 Points ∼47% -7%
Lenovo ThinkPad T580-20LAS01H00
GeForce MX150, 8550U, Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB512HAJQ
3425 Points ∼44% -13%
Average of class Office
  (803 - 4269, n=98)
3134 Points ∼40% -20%
Dell Latitude 5590
UHD Graphics 620, 8250U, SK hynix SC311 M.2
2469 Points ∼32% -37%
PCMark 8 Home Score Accelerated v2
3728 points
PCMark 8 Work Score Accelerated v2
5038 points
Help

Storage Devices

Much of our subjective experience noted in the previous section is thanks to the very fast internal Samsung PM981 NVMe SSD included in our review unit, which is in fact the same drive that was found in last April’s test unit. And just like last time, the drive is installed via a bay adapter in the 2.5-inch SATA drive bay, which effectively limits its speeds to those of PCIe x2. While it’s not ideal, in spite of this, overall performance is nonetheless sufficiently fast that it should never prove noticeable as a bottleneck to the user during typical use.

Dual storage is indeed possible if a second M.2-2242 SSD is installed in the WWAN slot, which also in fact doubles as a PCIe 3.0 x4 slot. We didn’t test this configuration, but it’s specified in Lenovo’s technical documentation.

AS SSD
AS SSD
CrystalDiskMark
CrystalDiskMark
Lenovo ThinkPad T580-20L9001AUS
Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB512HAJQ
Lenovo ThinkPad T580-20LAS01H00
Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB512HAJQ
Dell Latitude 5590
SK hynix SC311 M.2
HP EliteBook 850 G4 Z8W50EA
Samsung PM961 NVMe MZVLW512HMJP
Average Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB512HAJQ
 
AS SSD
-3%
-69%
13%
-26%
Score Total
3587
3548
-1%
912
-75%
3789
6%
3864 (2348 - 4771, n=21)
8%
Score Write
1564
1515
-3%
326
-79%
1291
-17%
1646 (147 - 2147, n=21)
5%
Score Read
1336
1342
0%
385
-71%
1681
26%
1473 (896 - 2125, n=21)
10%
Access Time Write *
0.035
0.033
6%
0.047
-34%
0.031
11%
0.1586 (0.027 - 2.52, n=21)
-353%
Access Time Read *
0.047
0.059
-26%
0.111
-136%
0.037
21%
0.049 (0.029 - 0.073, n=21)
-4%
4K-64 Write
1325.22
1277.8
-4%
212.7
-84%
1016.96
-23%
1392 (96.2 - 1866, n=21)
5%
4K-64 Read
1139.74
1153.13
1%
305.96
-73%
1381.53
21%
1239 (735 - 1823, n=21)
9%
4K Write
106.22
110.86
4%
73.54
-31%
120.64
14%
101 (1.76 - 134, n=21)
-5%
4K Read
50.78
51.47
1%
29.03
-43%
49.34
-3%
49.3 (31.7 - 58, n=21)
-3%
Seq Write
1324.07
1261.74
-5%
392.95
-70%
1538.13
16%
1534 (487 - 1991, n=21)
16%
Seq Read
1453.55
1373.14
-6%
503.09
-65%
2496.9
72%
1850 (1099 - 2469, n=21)
27%

* ... smaller is better

Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB512HAJQ
CDM 5/6 Read Seq Q32T1: 1772 MB/s
CDM 5/6 Write Seq Q32T1: 1714 MB/s
CDM 5/6 Read 4K Q32T1: 374.8 MB/s
CDM 5/6 Write 4K Q32T1: 293.9 MB/s
CDM 5 Read Seq: 810.6 MB/s
CDM 5 Write Seq: 825.7 MB/s
CDM 5/6 Read 4K: 44.61 MB/s
CDM 5/6 Write 4K: 122.1 MB/s

GPU Performance

Of course, the retreat from the NVIDIA GeForce MX150 in the previous model back to integrated Intel UHD Graphics 620 in today’s unit means vastly weaker graphical performance. The MX150-equipped configuration manages scores up to five times higher (depending on the benchmark)—so if GPU performance is important, consider that option instead. For everyone else, the Intel UHD Graphics option will save you some money and reduce power consumption and heat (and therefore improve battery life). And at least in context with other similarly-equipped machines, the T580 fares well.

3DMark Fire Strike
3DMark Fire Strike
3DMark Cloud Gate
3DMark Cloud Gate
3DMark 11
3DMark 11
3DMark 11
1280x720 Performance Combined
Dell XPS 15 9570 i7 UHD
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 Ti Max-Q, 8750H
8877 Points ∼49% +523%
Lenovo ThinkPad T580-20LAS01H00
NVIDIA GeForce MX150, 8550U
4000 Points ∼22% +181%
Average Intel UHD Graphics 620
  (959 - 3031, n=105)
1509 Points ∼8% +6%
Lenovo ThinkPad T580-20L9001AUS
Intel UHD Graphics 620, 8650U
1424 Points ∼8%
Dell Latitude 5590
Intel UHD Graphics 620, 8250U
1299 Points ∼7% -9%
HP EliteBook 850 G4 Z8W50EA
Intel HD Graphics 620, 7200U
1176 Points ∼6% -17%
Average of class Office
  (169 - 4566, n=602)
1127 Points ∼6% -21%
1280x720 Performance GPU
Dell XPS 15 9570 i7 UHD
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 Ti Max-Q, 8750H
9079 Points ∼18% +404%
Lenovo ThinkPad T580-20LAS01H00
NVIDIA GeForce MX150, 8550U
4392 Points ∼9% +144%
Lenovo ThinkPad T580-20L9001AUS
Intel UHD Graphics 620, 8650U
1802 Points ∼4%
Average Intel UHD Graphics 620
  (1235 - 3203, n=105)
1694 Points ∼3% -6%
Dell Latitude 5590
Intel UHD Graphics 620, 8250U
1619 Points ∼3% -10%
HP EliteBook 850 G4 Z8W50EA
Intel HD Graphics 620, 7200U
1423 Points ∼3% -21%
Average of class Office
  (185 - 4967, n=603)
1222 Points ∼2% -32%
3DMark
1920x1080 Fire Strike Graphics
Dell XPS 15 9570 i7 UHD
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 Ti Max-Q, 8750H
7428 Points ∼18% +564%
Lenovo ThinkPad T580-20LAS01H00
NVIDIA GeForce MX150, 8550U
3291 Points ∼8% +194%
Lenovo ThinkPad T580-20L9001AUS
Intel UHD Graphics 620, 8650U
1118 Points ∼3%
Average Intel UHD Graphics 620
  (557 - 2495, n=85)
1099 Points ∼3% -2%
Dell Latitude 5590
Intel UHD Graphics 620, 8250U
954 Points ∼2% -15%
Average of class Office
  (138 - 4109, n=430)
941 Points ∼2% -16%
HP EliteBook 850 G4 Z8W50EA
Intel HD Graphics 620, 7200U
810 Points ∼2% -28%
1280x720 Cloud Gate Standard Graphics
Lenovo ThinkPad T580-20LAS01H00
NVIDIA GeForce MX150, 8550U
18916 Points ∼10% +111%
Lenovo ThinkPad T580-20L9001AUS
Intel UHD Graphics 620, 8650U
8948 Points ∼5%
Average Intel UHD Graphics 620
  (6910 - 14880, n=94)
8922 Points ∼5% 0%
Dell Latitude 5590
Intel UHD Graphics 620, 8250U
8065 Points ∼4% -10%
HP EliteBook 850 G4 Z8W50EA
Intel HD Graphics 620, 7200U
7002 Points ∼4% -22%
Average of class Office
  (1208 - 27117, n=474)
6562 Points ∼4% -27%
1920x1080 Ice Storm Extreme Graphics
Average Intel UHD Graphics 620
  (30939 - 59483, n=28)
45012 Points ∼6%
Dell Latitude 5590
Intel UHD Graphics 620, 8250U
43661 Points ∼6%
Average of class Office
  (8473 - 86732, n=113)
39528 Points ∼5%
HP EliteBook 850 G4 Z8W50EA
Intel HD Graphics 620, 7200U
36381 Points ∼5%
3DMark 11 Performance
1966 points
3DMark Cloud Gate Standard Score
8240 points
3DMark Fire Strike Score
1015 points
Help
BioShock Infinite
1920x1080 Ultra Preset, DX11 (DDOF) (sort by value)
Lenovo ThinkPad T580-20L9001AUS
UHD Graphics 620, 8650U, Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB512HAJQ
8 fps ∼3%
Lenovo ThinkPad T580-20LAS01H00
GeForce MX150, 8550U, Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB512HAJQ
32.5 fps ∼12% +306%
Dell Latitude 5590
UHD Graphics 620, 8250U, SK hynix SC311 M.2
7.7 fps ∼3% -4%
HP EliteBook 850 G4 Z8W50EA
HD Graphics 620, 7200U, Samsung PM961 NVMe MZVLW512HMJP
6.2 fps ∼2% -22%
Dell XPS 15 9570 i7 UHD
GeForce GTX 1050 Ti Max-Q, 8750H, Toshiba XG5 KXG50ZNV512G
74.6 fps ∼28% +833%
Average Intel UHD Graphics 620
  (4.5 - 24.9, n=88)
8.96 fps ∼3% +12%
Average of class Office
  (2.54 - 54.8, n=210)
10.2 fps ∼4% +28%
1366x768 High Preset (sort by value)
Lenovo ThinkPad T580-20L9001AUS
UHD Graphics 620, 8650U, Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB512HAJQ
22 fps ∼6%
Lenovo ThinkPad T580-20LAS01H00
GeForce MX150, 8550U, Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB512HAJQ
85.2 fps ∼25% +287%
Dell Latitude 5590
UHD Graphics 620, 8250U, SK hynix SC311 M.2
24.1 fps ∼7% +10%
HP EliteBook 850 G4 Z8W50EA
HD Graphics 620, 7200U, Samsung PM961 NVMe MZVLW512HMJP
19.7 fps ∼6% -10%
Dell XPS 15 9570 i7 UHD
GeForce GTX 1050 Ti Max-Q, 8750H, Toshiba XG5 KXG50ZNV512G
187.8 fps ∼54% +754%
Average Intel UHD Graphics 620
  (8.1 - 68.8, n=95)
26.5 fps ∼8% +20%
Average of class Office
  (8.1 - 128, n=303)
25.8 fps ∼7% +17%
1366x768 Medium Preset (sort by value)
Lenovo ThinkPad T580-20L9001AUS
UHD Graphics 620, 8650U, Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB512HAJQ
27 fps ∼7%
Lenovo ThinkPad T580-20LAS01H00
GeForce MX150, 8550U, Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB512HAJQ
107.5 fps ∼29% +298%
Dell Latitude 5590
UHD Graphics 620, 8250U, SK hynix SC311 M.2
29.5 fps ∼8% +9%
HP EliteBook 850 G4 Z8W50EA
HD Graphics 620, 7200U, Samsung PM961 NVMe MZVLW512HMJP
22.9 fps ∼6% -15%
Dell XPS 15 9570 i7 UHD
GeForce GTX 1050 Ti Max-Q, 8750H, Toshiba XG5 KXG50ZNV512G
214 fps ∼57% +693%
Average Intel UHD Graphics 620
  (11.5 - 80.2, n=95)
31.6 fps ∼8% +17%
Average of class Office
  (10.8 - 145, n=323)
29.7 fps ∼8% +10%
1280x720 Very Low Preset (sort by value)
Lenovo ThinkPad T580-20L9001AUS
UHD Graphics 620, 8650U, Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB512HAJQ
60 fps ∼14%
Lenovo ThinkPad T580-20LAS01H00
GeForce MX150, 8550U, Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB512HAJQ
184.9 fps ∼43% +208%
Dell Latitude 5590
UHD Graphics 620, 8250U, SK hynix SC311 M.2
48 fps ∼11% -20%
HP EliteBook 850 G4 Z8W50EA
HD Graphics 620, 7200U, Samsung PM961 NVMe MZVLW512HMJP
40.1 fps ∼9% -33%
Dell XPS 15 9570 i7 UHD
GeForce GTX 1050 Ti Max-Q, 8750H, Toshiba XG5 KXG50ZNV512G
297 fps ∼68% +395%
Average Intel UHD Graphics 620
  (18.3 - 138, n=95)
59 fps ∼14% -2%
Average of class Office
  (12.2 - 204, n=324)
52.6 fps ∼12% -12%
low med. high ultra
BioShock Infinite (2013) 6027228fps

Stress Test

In typical Kaby Lake Refresh fashion, during full CPU synthetic stress, the CPU initially rockets upward toward max turbo speeds—though in this case it only ever reaches around 3.8 GHz under load—before soon subsiding to 2.7 GHz and later 2.4 GHz after temperatures climb back above 80 °C. GPU stress, on the other hand, easily provokes near-max turbo clock rates of 1100 MHz under stable temperatures of 80 °C.

Combined stress results in immediately throttled CPU clock rates of just 1.3 GHz and accompanying (prioritized) GPU frequencies of around 950 MHz on average. Temperatures remain stable at 75 °C.

Full CPU stress
Full CPU stress
Full GPU stress
Full GPU stress
Combined CPU + GPU stress
Combined CPU + GPU stress
CPU Clock (GHz) GPU Clock (MHz) Average CPU Temperature (°C) Average GPU Temperature (°C)
Prime95 Stress 2.4 - 80 -
FurMark Stress - 1100 - 80
Prime95 + FurMark Stress 1.3 950 75 75

Emissions

System Noise

While idling, the T580 is completely silent—a fairly typical trait in business notebooks. Introduce some stress, however, and it soon becomes noticeable; we measured 37.4 dB(A) of noise (against 28.6 dB(A) ambient levels) on average under load, up to a maximum of 40 dB(A). These values are right in line with the Dell Latitude 5590 and well below the XPS 15, but they’re far above the HP EliteBook 850 G4, which hardly makes its presence known even under the most severe stress.

We noticed a very slight electrical hiss emanating from today’s review unit, but it’s hard to hear in all but the most silent of conditions, so we would only consider this a minor problem.

Noise Level

Idle
28.6 / 28.6 / 28.6 dB(A)
Load
37.4 / 40 dB(A)
  red to green bar
 
 
30 dB
silent
40 dB(A)
audible
50 dB(A)
loud
 
min: dark, med: mid, max: light   BK Precision 732A (15 cm distance)   environment noise: 28.6 dB(A)
Fan noise profile
Fan noise profile
Lenovo ThinkPad T580-20L9001AUS
UHD Graphics 620, 8650U, Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB512HAJQ
Lenovo ThinkPad T580-20LAS01H00
GeForce MX150, 8550U, Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB512HAJQ
Dell Latitude 5590
UHD Graphics 620, 8250U, SK hynix SC311 M.2
HP EliteBook 850 G4 Z8W50EA
HD Graphics 620, 7200U, Samsung PM961 NVMe MZVLW512HMJP
Dell XPS 15 2018 i5 FHD 97Wh
GeForce GTX 1050 (Laptop), 8300H, Lite-On CA3-8D256-Q11
Noise
-1%
-2%
2%
-5%
off / environment *
28.6
29.3
-2%
29
-1%
30.3
-6%
Idle Minimum *
28.6
29.3
-2%
29
-1%
30
-5%
30.3
-6%
Idle Average *
28.6
29.3
-2%
29
-1%
30
-5%
30.3
-6%
Idle Maximum *
28.6
31.8
-11%
31.3
-9%
30
-5%
30.3
-6%
Load Average *
37.4
35.8
4%
36.6
2%
33.2
11%
37.1
1%
Load Maximum *
40
38
5%
40.9
-2%
34.2
14%
43
-8%
Witcher 3 ultra *
35.8
43.3

* ... smaller is better

Temperature

As we’d expect, since the cooling fan doesn’t engage while idling, temperatures under these circumstances are noticeably above ambient levels. With a room temperature of 20 °C, we measured idle averages of 26.4 °C / 31.1 °C on top/bottom respectively. That’s enough to become bothersome to even the most tolerant of users, with hot spots of 28.2 °C on the top and 34.2 °C on the bottom (8.2 °C / 14.2 °C above ambient levels, respectively). Fortunately, the Lenovo Vantage software can be used to customize cooling behavior by either enabling Intelligent Cooling (which dynamically adjusts cooling performance to keep the device cooler while being held versus resting on a stable surface) or explicitly toggling the Cool & quiet power profile therein, which reduces CPU performance to help lower surface temperatures and negate the need for fan operation.

Load values aren’t much of a problem with averages of 32.7 °C / 39.4 °C on top/bottom, but two particular hot spots on the bottom—56 °C in the center and 46.4 °C in the upper-right—suggest that more could have been done to balance out temperatures.

Max. Load
 32.4 °C
90 F
32.4 °C
90 F
31 °C
88 F
 
 36.8 °C
98 F
39 °C
102 F
32 °C
90 F
 
 29.6 °C
85 F
29.4 °C
85 F
31.8 °C
89 F
 
Maximum: 39 °C = 102 F
Average: 32.7 °C = 91 F
36.4 °C
98 F
39.6 °C
103 F
46.4 °C
116 F
37.8 °C
100 F
56 °C
133 F
37.4 °C
99 F
34.6 °C
94 F
29 °C
84 F
37.2 °C
99 F
Maximum: 56 °C = 133 F
Average: 39.4 °C = 103 F
Power Supply (max.)  37.6 °C = 100 F | Room Temperature 20 °C = 68 F | Fluke 62 Mini IR Thermometer
(±) The average temperature for the upper side under maximal load is 32.7 °C / 91 F, compared to the average of 29.4 °C / 85 F for the devices in the class Office.
(+) The maximum temperature on the upper side is 39 °C / 102 F, compared to the average of 33.9 °C / 93 F, ranging from 21.2 to 62.5 °C for the class Office.
(-) The bottom heats up to a maximum of 56 °C / 133 F, compared to the average of 36.4 °C / 98 F
(+) In idle usage, the average temperature for the upper side is 26.4 °C / 80 F, compared to the device average of 29.4 °C / 85 F.
(+) The palmrests and touchpad are cooler than skin temperature with a maximum of 31.8 °C / 89.2 F and are therefore cool to the touch.
(-) The average temperature of the palmrest area of similar devices was 28.3 °C / 82.9 F (-3.5 °C / -6.3 F).
Thermal profile, top (idle)
Thermal profile, top (idle)
Thermal profile, underside (idle)
Thermal profile, underside (idle)
Thermal profile, top (max load)
Thermal profile, top (max load)
Thermal profile, side (max load)
Thermal profile, side (max load)
Thermal profile, underside (max load)
Thermal profile, underside (max load)

Speakers

The T580 surprises with reasonably good audio, surpassing most other competitors in its class. Volume levels are decent, linearity across the spectrum is good, and only bass is somewhat lacking relative to other frequencies (hardly surprising given the absence of a subwoofer). As compared to the Latitude 5590, the sound is notably more linear and quite a bit more low frequency response is detectable. Subjectively, the sound seems just a bit flat out of the box, but post-processing is available via the Dolby app to further enhance the shape of the audio to meet particular tasks.

Speaker output profile
Speaker output profile
dB(A) 0102030405060708090Deep BassMiddle BassHigh BassLower RangeMidsHigher MidsLower HighsMid HighsUpper HighsSuper Highs2042.437.942.42546.638.546.63144.738.944.74047.439.347.45045.636.445.66347.234.547.28048.233.848.210050.234.150.212551.33351.316056.631.756.620059.73159.725065.930.965.931566.729.366.740064.928.464.950064.927.764.963067.827.167.880075.326.175.3100073.526.173.5125069.725.769.716006825.268200065.524.765.5250061.124.761.1315065.324.565.3400065.324.165.3500064.724.164.7630068.72468.7800066.723.866.7100005923.7591250063.623.663.61600061.123.661.1SPL80.437.580.4N513.151median 65.3median 25.7median 65.3Delta32.9331.131.629.330.531.135.731.133.129.7322633.826.636.625.74023.944.323.843.622.651.122.46120.463.518.964.318.167.917.771.116.776.616.776.416.176.615.774.815.971.615.970.515.974.316.370.316.67016.969.317.263.317.263.517.359.517.463.72984.71.261.4median 17.2median 67.91.75.5hearing rangehide median Pink NoiseLenovo ThinkPad T580-20L9001AUSDell Latitude 5590
Frequency diagram (checkboxes can be checked and unchecked to compare devices)
Lenovo ThinkPad T580-20L9001AUS audio analysis

(±) | speaker loudness is average but good (80.43 dB)
Bass 100 - 315 Hz
(±) | reduced bass - on average 7.6% lower than median
(±) | linearity of bass is average (7.8% delta to prev. frequency)
Mids 400 - 2000 Hz
(+) | balanced mids - only 3.6% away from median
(±) | linearity of mids is average (7% delta to prev. frequency)
Highs 2 - 16 kHz
(+) | balanced highs - only 2.3% away from median
(±) | linearity of highs is average (8.3% delta to prev. frequency)
Overall 100 - 16.000 Hz
(+) | overall sound is linear (10.6% difference to median)
Compared to same class
» 0% of all tested devices in this class were better, 2% similar, 98% worse
» The best had a delta of 8%, average was 21%, worst was 51%
Compared to all devices tested
» 3% of all tested devices were better, 2% similar, 95% worse
» The best had a delta of 3%, average was 21%, worst was 53%

Dell Latitude 5590 audio analysis

(+) | speakers can play relatively loud (84.7 dB)
Bass 100 - 315 Hz
(-) | nearly no bass - on average 17.3% lower than median
(±) | linearity of bass is average (9.3% delta to prev. frequency)
Mids 400 - 2000 Hz
(±) | higher mids - on average 5.4% higher than median
(+) | mids are linear (4.6% delta to prev. frequency)
Highs 2 - 16 kHz
(+) | balanced highs - only 3.4% away from median
(+) | highs are linear (4.5% delta to prev. frequency)
Overall 100 - 16.000 Hz
(±) | linearity of overall sound is average (15.8% difference to median)
Compared to same class
» 17% of all tested devices in this class were better, 3% similar, 80% worse
» The best had a delta of 8%, average was 21%, worst was 51%
Compared to all devices tested
» 20% of all tested devices were better, 4% similar, 76% worse
» The best had a delta of 3%, average was 21%, worst was 53%

Energy Management

Power Consumption

Our power consumption measurements from the T580 depict it as somewhat hungrier than the Latitude 5590 and EliteBook while idling (anywhere between 18% and 23% on average). Load averages are more in line with the 5590 (apart from a much lower maximum reading), but still far in excess of what we recorded from the EliteBook 850 G4, which only required 27.2 W under load on average (versus 47.2 W from the T580 we’re evaluating today). Perhaps the bigger story here though is the reduction in consumption relative to the MX150/UHD-equipped T580 configuration, which demanded an average of 24% to 29% more power under both load and idle conditions, respectively. This isn’t all that surprising, of course, given the higher-powered parts in the preceding configuration, but it ought to justify the use of a much smaller (and lighter) dual-battery configuration such as the one we’re using in today’s setup.

Power consumption, Prime 95 stress
Power consumption, Prime 95 stress
Power Consumption
Off / Standbydarklight 0.34 / 0.65 Watt
Idledarkmidlight 4.7 / 7.9 / 11.4 Watt
Load midlight 47.2 / 48.1 Watt
 color bar
Key: min: dark, med: mid, max: light        Metrahit Energy
Lenovo ThinkPad T580-20L9001AUS
8650U, UHD Graphics 620, Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB512HAJQ, IPS, 1920x1080, 15.6
Lenovo ThinkPad T580-20LAS01H00
8550U, GeForce MX150, Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB512HAJQ, IPS LED, 3840x2160, 15.6
Dell Latitude 5590
8250U, UHD Graphics 620, SK hynix SC311 M.2, IPS, 1920x1080, 15.6
HP EliteBook 850 G4 Z8W50EA
7200U, HD Graphics 620, Samsung PM961 NVMe MZVLW512HMJP, , 1920x1080, 15.6
Dell XPS 15 2018 i5 FHD 97Wh
8300H, GeForce GTX 1050 (Laptop), Lite-On CA3-8D256-Q11, LED IGZO IPS InfinityEdge, 1920x1080, 15.6
Power Consumption
-24%
7%
32%
-17%
Idle Minimum *
4.7
5.3
-13%
3.6
23%
2.4
49%
2.9
38%
Idle Average *
7.9
10.2
-29%
6.5
18%
6.1
23%
5.8
27%
Idle Maximum *
11.4
13.6
-19%
7.2
37%
10
12%
7.5
34%
Load Average *
47.2
58.3
-24%
46.2
2%
27.2
42%
77.5
-64%
Load Maximum *
48.1
65.3
-36%
68.8
-43%
32
33%
107
-122%
Witcher 3 ultra *
47.8
84

* ... smaller is better

Battery Life

Speaking of which, the 32 Wh (internal) + 24 Wh (external) ThinkPad Power Bridge battery configuration of our T580 test unit is barely half of what we got with the MX150 configuration—which also, in turn, was 167 grams heavier than our current machine. Unfortunately, all these weight savings still translate to an abbreviated 4 hours and 12 minutes of total runtime in our standardized wi-fi web surfing battery test, which is hardly enough to get by for most business professionals. By comparison, our previous review unit, with 105 Wh of total battery capacity (internal + external), lasted over twice as long at 8:42 in that same test. Other competitors, such as Dell’s Latitude 5590, still manage nearly twice the runtime with less battery capacity.

Of note: we actually performed this battery runtime test twice to ensure that nothing had gone awry the first time—and received nearly the same results. The bottom line is that we’d probably recommend a slightly larger battery for anyone planning on taking the T580 with them for any reasonable period of time. Fortunately, they’re easy to swap thanks to the dual-battery configuration.

Battery Runtime
NBC WiFi Websurfing Battery Test 1.3
4h 12min
Lenovo ThinkPad T580-20L9001AUS
8650U, UHD Graphics 620, 56 Wh
Lenovo ThinkPad T580-20LAS01H00
8550U, GeForce MX150, 105 Wh
Dell Latitude 5590
8250U, UHD Graphics 620, 51 Wh
HP EliteBook 850 G4 Z8W50EA
7200U, HD Graphics 620, 51.3 Wh
Dell XPS 15 9570 i7 UHD
8750H, GeForce GTX 1050 Ti Max-Q, 97 Wh
Battery Runtime
107%
76%
129%
WiFi v1.3
252
522
107%
444
76%
576
129%
WiFi
501
Witcher 3 ultra
62

Pros

+ excellent input devices
+ numeric keypad
+ relatively straightforward maintenance
+ 3-year warranty
+ fast general performance
+ reasonable noise levels
+ good build quality
+ matte, on-cell embedded touch display
+ possibility for dual-storage configurations
+ convenient battery swap technology

Cons

- poor display with weak brightness and washed-out color
- disappointing CPU performance fails to justify upgrade
- significantly reduced CPU speeds with sustained loads
- short battery life
- high idle temperatures and hot spots on bottom under load

Verdict

In review: Lenovo ThinkPad T580
In review: Lenovo ThinkPad T580

For business notebook traditionalists fixated on the presence of a 15.6-inch display and numeric keypad, the ThinkPad T580 represents one of the few good options still available. It’s true that the smaller machines (14 inch and below) have assumed the ultra-premium roles, with stronger cases/stability and slicker appearances—but the T580 offers most of the same benefits in a slightly larger form factor with the ever-important numeric keypad off to the right. As always, the input devices are first-rate, build quality is very good, maintenance is relatively straightforward, and the 3-year on-site warranty is inherently reassuring. It’s also a very quiet machine that posts strong general system performance results and CPU test scores which are sufficient for the average user (even if they can’t maintain their strength over the longer term). Finally, we do really enjoy the on-cell embedded touch screen technology that we’re beginning to see included in so many business models across the spectrum; our current review unit features such a panel, and it is truly anti-glare in spite of its touch capabilities.

Choose your specs wisely, but apart from the disappointing display and weak battery life, most everything else about the ThinkPad T580 will feel right at home for business machine traditionalists.

There are some definite drawbacks to the T580, however. For starters, as we alluded to above, the CPU performance scores plummet after several minutes of activity (a drop of close to 20%) and never recover subsequently until the machine is given a rest. Performance results from the Core i7-8650U are actually below those of our previous review unit (which included a Core i7-8550U), bringing into question the value of the upgrade. Elsewhere, while today’s unit is substantially cheaper than the previous review machine, the FHD display is dreary and dim in comparison to even the lackluster UHD panel in April’s unit. There are a couple of troublesome hot spots on the bottom of the machine under load, and wireless performance was oddly hamstrung by what seems likely to be an antenna issue (though this is certainly specific to our review unit and not indicative of problems with the model as a whole). And finally, perhaps most perplexingly, battery runtimes are far below what we’d hope to see out of even a 56 Wh-equipped machine, somehow nearly half of what we recorded from our Dell Latitude 5590 review unit (whose battery is actually smaller). Fortunately, batteries are easy to swap on this model thanks to the dual-battery ThinkPad Power Bridge design, so users can pack an extra external battery to help quell any concerns while on the go.

But apart from the EliteBook 840 G5 and Latitude 5590, the $1,887 ThinkPad T580 is one of the only remaining choices for a 15-inch notebook with a numeric keypad that still qualifies as a high-end (but general use) business machine. Without stepping up into workstation territory, only consumer-grade offshoot models (such as the XPS 15) exist elsewhere, and the XPS lacks the keypad. Choose your specs wisely, but apart from the disappointing display and weak battery life, most everything else about the T580 will feel right at home for business machine traditionalists.

Lenovo ThinkPad T580-20L9001AUS - 08/10/2018 v6
Steve Schardein

Chassis
86 / 98 → 87%
Keyboard
94%
Pointing Device
89%
Connectivity
61 / 80 → 76%
Weight
64 / 20-67 → 93%
Battery
76%
Display
84%
Games Performance
58 / 68 → 85%
Application Performance
88 / 92 → 95%
Temperature
85%
Noise
90%
Audio
70%
Camera
40 / 85 → 47%
Average
76%
86%
Office - Weighted Average

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> Notebook / Laptop Reviews and News > Reviews > Lenovo ThinkPad T580 (i7-8650U, FHD) Laptop Review
Steve Schardein, 2018-08-14 (Update: 2018-08-14)
Steve Schardein
Steve Schardein - Review Editor - @othersteve
In grade school, my first computer—an Apple IIGS—started it all for me. Later, in the nineties, if I wasn’t repairing computers for family and friends, I was busy cooking up nifty Visual Basic projects and playing PC games like Command & Conquer and Heroes of Might and Magic. Soon, much of my free time was spent moderating popular gaming forums and covering the industry for various websites. All the while, I never stopped repairing computers, and in 2006, I started a technology consulting company in Louisville, KY—Triple-S Computers—which I have been fortunate to nurture to great success by specializing in not only repairs, but also new machine consultations and purchasing, data recovery, and malware/security. And since 2012, I have proudly contributed many dozens of reviews to Notebookcheck, a site which I have long considered to be the ultimate authority on laptops and related technology. Today, I am truly living my dream: still a child at heart, ever-curious, constantly learning, and thankful to you, our readers.