A classic ThinkPad, the R61 is full of nice features you don't usually find in a laptop, such as the ThinkLight, an LED that illuminates the keyboard. The R61's 14.1-inch screen and 5.8-pound weight make it an ideal travel companion, too. For a work-oriented notebook decked out with all the trimmings, this model is hard to beat.
The first-rate keyboard includes both a touchpad and an eraserhead nub, as well as dedicated Internet forward and back buttons. An integrated fingerprint reader, located in the right palmrest, makes log-ins a breeze once you set it up. You can hot-swap devices -- the dual-layer DVD drive or an extra battery, among others -- in and out of the right-side modular bay with one hand. On-screen documentation and system recovery utilities are just a button press away.
The 2.2-GHz Core 2 Duo T7500-equipped R61 performed admirably in our speed tests, with a WorldBench 6 Beta 2 score of 80. The R61's 3-hour, 19-minute tested battery life is good.
The $2,004 ThinkPad R61 is a nicely designed machine that deserves consideration as a travel-worthy portable.