The Lenovo M73 Tiny is a compact PC (commonly shortened to SFF / Small Form Factor PC) which is designed primarily for enterprise usage, but has also become popular among home server and lab enthusiasts. It is a high-performance option that is widely available for a very good price on the second hand market.
The Lenovo M73 is getting a bit long in the tooth now, having first appeared in 2014, what that means is you can find these all-in-one computers on eBay for dirt cheap! With prices ranging from around $50 to $100 on average, depending on the specifications.
What some may not be aware of is that the M73 Tiny comes with a standalone and therefore easily upgradeable CPU, which means you can update them to be a serious powerhouse for a home lab environment.
Officially supported Lenovo M73 Tiny CPU Upgrade options
According to the official ThinkCentre M73 Tiny Platform Specifications these are the following supported CPU options.
Intel Celeron, Intel Pentium, or 4th Generation Intel Core™ i3 / i5 / i7 Processors
|Celeron G1820T||2 / 2||2.4 GHz||2 MB||DDR3-1333||Intel HD|
|Celeron G1840T||2 / 2||2.5 GHz||2 MB||DDR3-1333||Intel HD|
|Pentium G3220T||2 / 2||2.6 GHz||3 MB||DDR3-1333||Intel HD|
|Pentium G3240T||2 / 2||2.7 GHz||3 MB||DDR3-1333||Intel HD|
|Pentium G3420T||2 / 2||2.7 GHz||3 MB||DDR3-1600||Intel HD|
|Core i3-4130T||2 / 4||2.9 GHz||3 MB||DDR3-1600||HD 4400|
|Core i3-4150T||2 / 4||3 GHz||3 MB||DDR3-1600||HD 4400|
|Core i5-4460T||4 / 4||1.9 GHz / 2.7 GHz||6 MB||DDR3-1600||HD 4600|
|Core i5-4570T||2 / 4||2.9 GHz / 3.6 GHz||4 MB||DDR3-1600||HD 4600|
|Core i5-4590T||4 / 4||2 GHz / 3 GHz||6 MB||DDR3-1600||HD 4600|
|Core i7-4765T||4 / 8||2 GHz / 3 GHz||8 MB||DDR3-1600||HD 4600|
|Core i7-4785T||4 / 8||2.2 GHz / 3.2 GHz||8 MB||DDR3-1600||HD 4600|
Unofficially supported Lenovo M73 Tiny CPU Upgrade options!
If you’re feeling adventurous, there are numerous CPU upgrade options available for your Lenovo M73. Given that the M73 has been around for a while, people have experimented with numerous CPU options beyond the officially supported ones.
Scouring online forums, we have found threads where people have successfully ran standard desktop CPUs as well as Xenon’s in their M73s. However, we don’t recommend trying this unless you’re an experienced user. In most cases, the officially supported CPUs will be more than adequate for home lab setups.
The sweet spot is any of the i5 CPUs, which offer 4 cores and 4 threads, without being prohibitively expensive like the i7’s.
How to upgrade the Lenovo M73 Tiny CPU
If you have experience upgrading processors or building a PC, then upgrading the CPU on a Lenovo M73 should be relatively straightforward.
Despite its small size, the M73 has a relatively standard installation process, as demonstrated in the video below.
What CPU do you have in your M73?
The benefits of being able to upgrade the CPU in your Lenovo M73 include the ability to increase performance and extend the useable life of your computer. It’s also a more cost-effective solution than purchasing a new computer, as you can simply purchase a new CPU rather than an entirely new system.
Whilst we think these M73’s make a decent choice for home labs, 4th generation intel CPU’s are starting to show their age and we would probably recommend a more modern Lenovo Tiny.
Which CPU have you tried in your Lenovo M73 Tiny?