Our test configuration features a 10.6in wide-aspect screen with a crisp, 1,280x768-pixel native resolution that creates quite a bit of screen real estate, though text looks small. The screen shone so brightly that we could work in a sunny breakfast nook.
The mostly black plastic shell measures 261 by 35 by 199mm, placing it at the bulkier end of the ultraportable spectrum. The LifeBook P7010D weighs 1.5kg on its own and 1.9kg with the AC adaptor; that's the same as the more expensive Panasonic ToughBook Y2, which features a bigger form factor and a 14.1in screen.
The notebook's quiet and responsive keyboard is also small and crowded -- in particular, the comma and period keys are half-width (although the Windows key is full size), and the spacebar is only about four letters wide. Still, we found the P7010D light and small enough to carry in one hand while typing and working the cursor with the other. One minor criticism: the lid lacks a clasp and could become floppy with wear.
One of the LifeBook P7010D's more notable features is a biometric fingerprint reader. You can set it up so that you no longer have to type in passwords on Web sites or log in to the OS, but rather you can stroke your finger across the scanner for access. Setting up the included Softex OmniPass fingerprint-reading software went smoothly for us, but we found the sensor rather fussy: the system would balk if we didn't carefully run a finger in an exactly perpendicular motion down the reader.
The LifeBook P7010D is loaded with features and connections -- you'll find just about everything a full-size notebook would have, including three slots for Secure Digital/Memory Stick, CompactFlash, and Type II PC cards; a four-pin FireWire, an S-Video, and two USB 2.0 ports; Ethernet, modem, and an external switch to turn the a/b/g Wi-Fi transceiver off (to conserve power); and a CD-RW/DVD-ROM drive in a hot-swappable bay.
However, with the main battery monopolising the laptop's back edge, a well-connected LifeBook P7010D will have a lot of messy wires poking out from the sides. (We think it's worth the mess.) Our test unit came preloaded with Microsoft Windows XP Pro and included Microsoft Works 7.0 and Sonic Solutions' Record Now for burning CDs and DVDs.
The Lifebook P7010D has unremarkable components, but Fujitsu has tuned them well. Our test model featured a 1.1GHz Pentium M, 512MB of DDR memory, a 60GB hard drive spinning at 4,200rpm, and an integrated Intel graphics controller.
In our tests, the Fujitsu sped ahead of the more pricey Sony VAIO X505, which is similarly endowed but half a kilo lighter. The LifeBook P7010D also fared well against Panasonic's thin-and-light ToughBook Y2. In the battery life test, the Fujitsu chugged along for almost five hours -- about twice as long as the VAIO X505, but a few minutes shy of the ToughBook Y2's awesome 5 hours 18 minutes.
||BAPCo MobileMark 2002 performance rating|
||BAPCo MobileMark 2002 battery life in minutes|
Fujitsu LifeBook P7010D
Windows XP Professional; 1.1GHz Intel Pentium M; 512MB DDR SDRAM 333MHz; Intel Extreme Graphics 2 For Mobile (up to 64MB); Fujitsu MHT2060AT 60GB 4,200rpm
Panasonic ToughBook CF-Y2
Windows XP Professional; 1.3GHz Intel Pentium M; 256MB DDR SDRAM 266MHz; Intel Extreme Graphics 2 For Mobile (up to 64MB); Toshiba MK4025GASL 40GB 4,200rpm
Sony VAIO X505
Windows XP Professional; 1.1GHz Intel Pentium M; 512MB DDR SDRAM 266MHz; Intel Extreme Graphics 2 For Mobile (up to 64MB); Toshiba MK2004GAL 20GB 4,200rpm
Edited by Justin Jaffe
Additional editing by Nick Hide