[SOLVED] ThinkStation P330 experience/advice?

cteno

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The Lenovo ThinkStation P330 series has been shipping for more than a year, yet there seem to be very few reviews. None of the stores within driving distance (including Best Buy, Staples and Micro Center) carry the product for an in-store look. So I'm hoping that someone here can help.

I'm seeking two or three small Win10 office machines. No gaming (though we do want to show - not edit - some 4k videos); heaviest processor loading is currently from Photoshop. Current Win7 Lenovo K430 Core i7 systems seem overpowered for most of our needs - always run at minimum power setting, with no issues (and minimal fan noise). Space is a major factor, so the P330 mini-tower (6.5” x 12.9” x 14.8”) or SFF (3.6” x 12" x 13.5”) are attractive. The SFF design would just about contain needed HDDs, etc., where the mini-tower looks like an easy fit.

Can anyone please comment on the built quality of this new series, Lenovo support, or any other aspect? We were going to get custom builds, but it looks like the P330 offers more capability for slightly less money and in a smaller case than anything the usual builders offer.

Thanks in advance for any guidance.
 

hang-the-9

Titan
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Any modern card can run a 4k screen for standard use, question is if these are office computers why are you going to be using 4k screens on them? For a 4k screen you want something larger for higher end work, which would mean a higher end system with a better video card. For standard use, 1080 or maybe 1440 is fine. I can't think if any IT person that would pick a system to run two 4k displays and use a system that can't hold a decent video card, so if use requires using several 4k monitors you may want to get a system that is setup for using them or get a lower res monitor.
 
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hang-the-9

Titan
Moderator
The Lenovo hardware is on the top tier of the OEM systems, we use their small form factors at work. Support is as good as any company, you get better service with a corporate account as with pretty much all of the companies.
 

cteno

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Very much obliged for this guidance, hang-the-9. I am mystified by the lack of public reviews, but will trust the experience of a Titan!

Since you provided a link to a nice TH article about graphics cards, might I ask your (or anyone's) thoughts about the minimum I could use? I don't mind spending more, but am worried about power when only a 260W supply is available in the P330-SFF model. The "lightest" cards offered are NVIDIA Quadro P400 or P620 2GB low-profile. For normal business use (including displaying 2/4k video, but no gaming or other real-time rendering) with dual monitors, should the P400 suffice?

I called Lenovo to ask why they only offer up to 2TB HDD; got no answer. Guess I'll use NAS for extra data, most of which is rarely accessed.

Thanks again for the help!
 

hang-the-9

Titan
Moderator
Any modern card can run a 4k screen for standard use, question is if these are office computers why are you going to be using 4k screens on them? For a 4k screen you want something larger for higher end work, which would mean a higher end system with a better video card. For standard use, 1080 or maybe 1440 is fine. I can't think if any IT person that would pick a system to run two 4k displays and use a system that can't hold a decent video card, so if use requires using several 4k monitors you may want to get a system that is setup for using them or get a lower res monitor.
 
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cteno

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Another helpful reply - much obliged!

Short answer: I have no idea why we'd need 4k for anything in the near future, and we don't currently have any screens bigger than 28" diagonal anyway. (And this poster has eyes that probably couldn't see the difference.) But someone insisted that we should have at least one PC with the capability for two reasons: in case we ever need to screen technical videos at that resolution, and to get inexpensive future-proofing in case we ever have to edit high-res video clips. Personally, I suspect that someone plans to watch sports (or ?) after hours.

I'm going to buy the cheapest video card just to have it ready, but might wind up hooking two 1080 LCDs to the main board.

Thanks again.
 

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