Lenovo ThinkStation E31 review

Lenovo has squeezed the high-end Xeon processors and NVIDIA Quadro 600 graphics into a small-form-factor workstation. It makes for a powerful, but noisy machine.

Price
£871
ITPRO Recommended award

Dozens of companies produce what purport to be business PCs, but only the biggest firms have the clout and ability to design bespoke systems that cater to the corporate world.

Lenovo is one of the big players and its latest system, the ThinkStation E31, aims to maintain the firm's high standards, but does it succeed?

Small and intricately formed

This particular ThinkStation E31 is a small-form-factor model, and much like the last Lenovo workstation which we impressed us the ThinkCentre M90. It's designed in much the same way: press a spring-loaded clip on the rear of the system and the lift lids up to reveal the guts of this diminutive machine.

Lenovo has done well to fit so much practicality into the E31. The processor and motherboard are hidden behind a plastic shroud, the optical drive is held inside a metal cage that handily tilts up to a 90 degree angle, and the hard disk is stored in a purple plastic caddy that can be used without tools.

Lenovo ThinkStation E31 - Open

The E31 is easily accessible which makes servicing and upgrading easy

It makes accessing the variety of components relatively simple. The plastic shroud above the motherboard can be removed with four screws and, when it's pulled out of the way, the LGA 1155 processor socket, four memory slots with two vacant and a pair of empty PCI sockets are laid bare. The motherboard has a PCI-Express x1 slot free, too, although its PCI-Express x16 slot is occupied.

The optical drive's cage lifts up with the removal of a single clip, and the hard disk cage is similarly simple to use pull a tab at the end and it moves up on a couple of hinges. Two smaller tabs can be pulled to allow for hard disk removal, and hard disks are held in place on metal pins rather than screws that require tools.

Featured Resources

The ultimate law enforcement agency guide to going mobile

Best practices for implementing a mobile device program

Free download

The business value of Red Hat OpenShift

Platform cost savings, ROI, and the challenges and opportunities of Red Hat OpenShift

Free download

Managing security and risk across the IT supply chain: A practical approach

Best practices for IT supply chain security

Free download

Digital remote monitoring and dispatch services’ impact on edge computing and data centres

Seven trends redefining remote monitoring and field service dispatch service requirements

Free download

Recommended

Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Titanium Yoga review: Slim, light, but only alright
Laptops

Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Titanium Yoga review: Slim, light, but only alright

28 Sep 2021
Lenovo and VMware collaborate on resilient edge computing
Network & Internet

Lenovo and VMware collaborate on resilient edge computing

7 Sep 2021
Lenovo IdeaPad Flex 5 Chromebook review: A dependable workhorse
Laptops

Lenovo IdeaPad Flex 5 Chromebook review: A dependable workhorse

30 Jun 2021
Lenovo launches new workstations for the hybrid working environment
Hardware

Lenovo launches new workstations for the hybrid working environment

17 Jun 2021

Most Popular

Best Linux distros 2021
operating systems

Best Linux distros 2021

11 Oct 2021
HPE wins networking contract with Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games
Network & Internet

HPE wins networking contract with Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games

15 Oct 2021
Veritas Backup Exec 21.3 review: Covers every angle
backup software

Veritas Backup Exec 21.3 review: Covers every angle

14 Oct 2021