Fujitsu LifeBook T4220 Tablet PC User Review

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  1. thaluckyspoon

    thaluckyspoon Scribbler - Standard Member

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    by Tyler Robertson

    Fujitsu LifeBook T4220 Tablet PC User Review

    After about three months of waiting for the Santa Rosa platform and two months of searching, I finally decided on the Fujitsu T4220.  Unlike my experiences with the other two companies I was contemplating I received no shipping delays, and no double orders.  Fujitsu is a great company and it shows in the design and build of the T4220.

    [​IMG]
    The Fujitsu LifeBook T4220 converting into tablet mode. (view large image)

    Fujitsu LifeBook T4220 Tablet PC Specs as reviewed (tested price $2,000)


      CPU: Intel Core 2 Duo 2.0GHz T7300
      OS: Windows Vista Business
      Ram: 4GB DDR2 667 MHz SDRAM
      Graphics: Intel GM965 Express Chipset, GMA X3100 graphics
      Audio: Integrated speakers
      Hard Drive: 80GB S-ATA 5400 rpm
      Optical Drive: Modular Dual-Layer Multi-Format DVD Writer
      Ports: 3 x USB, 1 x VGA, 1 x microphone in, 1 x headphone in, 1 x Smart card, 1 x SD card
      Communication: Intel Wireless 4965A/G/N, 10/100/1000 Ethernet, Multinational  56K  V.90 modem
      Dimensions: 11.5" x 9.3" x 1.1/1.4"
      Weight: 4.3 lbs
      Battery Power: 6-Cell Primary + Additional 6-Cell Modular

      Reasons for Buying

      I am entering my first year of college in a couple of weeks and I am studying electrical engineering. Although typing advanced mathematical and physics equations seemed like loads of fun, I would much rather write them with a tablet. 

      At first I wanted a gaming tablet that was lightweight, small and powerful. This posed a problem since such a tablet does not exist yet.  Eventually I looked around in my room and noticed my three gaming consoles and began wondering… ‘Why don’t I just play on these?' I came to my senses and realized I would rather have the fastest lightweight tablet money can buy than an 8lb hog. The Fujitsu T4220 seemed to fit the bill the best. It was one of the only ones available with a fully fledged Core 2 Duo processor on the Santa Rosa platform. Fujitsu also offers enough customization options to make Sonic Drink founders jealous.

      The other two tablets I was considering were the X61 from Lenovo and the C-140x from Gateway. Both are nice tablets, just not right for me.

      Design and Build

      The T4220 is solid in design and construction. The lid is matte black, which looks great while hiding fingerprints. The bezel is light silver and accented by a white keyboard. The keyboard being white won’t hide much dirt, but it sure does look great next to the silver. One thing I really liked about the design is the pen placement. Some people complain that it is ugly and in the way, but I think the exact opposite. I never have to worry about the silo scratching the pen, forgetting if the pen is in the silo or buying a replacement pen that won’t fit in the silo. All of those problems cease to exist with the T4220’s pen placement.  Another great feature is the bi-directional hinge, which will get heads turning. It is so nice to be able to turn the screen right or left depending on who is sitting next to you and wants to see. I will also rest a little easier knowing that my brother or sister can’t accidentally try to force the screen in the wrong direction and damage the hinge.

      My best efforts to produce ripples were laughed at by the very durable tablet screen. I doubt I could produce a ripple even if I stood on it. (By the way there is actually a video of someone demonstrating this on the Internet somewhere. Crazy!)

      [​IMG]
      The T4220 in notebook mode. (view large image)

      I didn't notice any screen wobble on this tablet. If I poke hard enough with my stylus the tablet will lift off the ground though. Rotating into tablet mode is easy and the screen snaps into place with no problems  There is a little bit of a gap (about 1 cm) between the back of the screen and the keyboard while in tablet mode.  If you are in a car you may notice it jostling about a tiny bit. 

      Walking around with the T4220 is a breeze. I am used to an 8lb beast, so it is nice to have this lightweight machine. It has many great features, but I really liked the modular bay drive because if you ever need to double your battery life or lose half a pound just flip the switch. 

      However there are a couple of things I think could have been improved. The built in vibration sensor is a little annoying. I know it is designed to protect the hard drive in case of fall, but if the tablet is on my thigh and I tap my foot the alarm goes off. Even on the most relaxed setting the alarm goes off. I ended up just turning it off completely… way too sensitive. I also wish there was some dedicated volume buttons or a volume scroll somewhere on the body of the machine. Not an issue, but something they could have included.

      Display

      Wow! That is the first thing that came out of my mouth when this machine was powered on. This is my first tablet so I was expecting a little graininess, but there was none present. The T4220 display looks almost exactly like a regular notebook, which wasn’t something I was expecting. The colors are rich and vibrant and movies like Terminator 2 look fabulous.

      One thing I was worried about was the XGA resolution being too cramped for me, but I love it. It is the perfect size for me and I couldn’t imagine a higher resolution. Nothing is cramped and as I write this I have four windows open not including iTunes. 

      [​IMG]
      The T4220 in tablet mode. (view large image)

      I didn’t go for the indoor/outdoor screen, but I did get the wide viewing angles. If you plan on using this in direct sunlight often I would opt for the outdoor screen because it becomes virtually useless under the sun. Under the lights or in the shade it looks great and works flawlessly, not too reflective at all. The viewing angles are great… so great it is kind of worrisome. I don’t want a nosy neighbor at Starbucks seeing whatever I have going on. 

      Using the screen in tablet mode is easy. It gives you some friction so it feels like you are actually writing on paper instead of glass which is neat. The screen automatically orients itself when you flip into tablet mode and the rotate buttons work like they are supposed to. There is also a small LCD screen, which displays the status of the machine (battery life, wireless, etc).

      Speakers

      The speakers are well placed at the front of the tablet, but aren’t the most powerful. The sound is crisp and clear and if you increase to max volume you don’t get much distortion. Volume gets pretty loud… a lot louder than I expected those little speakers to go.  As I was watching Minority Report, my sister was sleeping in the next room over and I woke her up. If you want better sound quality there is a very convenient headphone jack on the front.

      Processor and Performance

      The system I have came with an Intel Core 2 Duo T7300 processor, a 80GB 5400 rpm HDD, and 4GB Ram (2 x 2GB). It is fast. I am coming from a slow laptop and a custom built gaming desktop, so the T4220 is a major improvement. Beyond the superior graphics card of the desktop this machine gives it a beat down. Did I mention it is so fast! I tried slowing this system down, but I don’t even have enough programs installed yet to tax it fully. I am extremely impressed with the performance so far.

      Booting up is quick. It takes less than a minute from pressing the power button for me to be fully productive. Restarting is just as quick. 

      I haven’t tried too many games. F.E.A.R. ran on the lowest settings possible, but it ran. The only other game I have tried is Rise of Nations and it ran perfectly fine without changing any settings. I can’t say I’m too impressed with the X3100 graphics, but I’m optimistic about the driver updates boosting my performance.

      Benchmarks

      Comparison Results for PCMark05

      PCMark05 measures the systems performance as a whole:

      NotebookPCMark05 Score
      Fujitsu LifeBook T4220 (Intel Core 2 Duo 2.0GHz, GMA X3100 graphics)3,911 PCMarks
      HP Compaq 2710p (Intel Core 2 Duo ULV 1.2GHz, GMA X3100 graphics)2,453 PCMarks
      Lenovo ThinkPad X61 (Intel Core 2 Duo 1.6GHz, GMA X3100 graphics)3,473 PCMarks
      Fujitsu LifeBook T4220 (Intel Core 2 Duo 2.2GHz, GMA X3100 graphics)4,171 PCMarks
      Gateway E-155C (Intel Core 2 Duo ULV 1.06GHz, Intel GMA 950 graphics)2,205 PCMarks
      LG C1 (Intel Core Duo 1.2GHz, Nvidia Go 7300)2,568 PCMarks
      Toshiba R400 (Intel Core Duo ULV 1.2GHz, Intel GMA 950 graphics)2,187 PCMarks
      HP tx1000 (AMD Turion X2 2.0GHz, Nvidia Go 6150)3,052 PCMarks
      Asus R1F (1.66GHz Core Duo, Intel GMA 950 graphics)2,724 PCMarks
      Lenovo ThinkPad X60t (1.66GHz LV Core Duo)2,860 PCMarks
      Panasonic ToughBook T4 (Intel 1.20GHz LV)1,390 PCMarks
      Toshiba Tecra M6 (1.66GHz Intel T2300E, Intel GMA 950)2,732 PCMarks

       

      Super Pi

      In the below results of Super Pi, where the processor is timed in calculating Pi to 2 million digits:

      NotebookTime to Calculate Pi to 2 Million Digits
      Fujitsu LifeBook T4220 (2.0GHz Core 2 Duo)1m 2s
      HP Compaq 2710p (1.2GHz ULV Core 2 Duo)1m 39s
      Lenovo ThinkPad X61 (1.6GHz Core 2 Duo)1m 10s
      Fujitsu LifeBook T4220 (2.2GHz Core 2 Duo)54s
      Gateway E-155C (1.06GHz ULV Core 2 Duo)1m 58s
      LG C1 (1.2GHz Intel Core Duo)1m 49s
      Toshiba R400 (1.2GHz ULV Core Duo)2m 10s
      Asus R1F (1.66GHz Core Duo)1m 20s
      Lenovo ThinkPad X60t (1.66GHz LV Core Duo)1m 24s
      IBM ThinkPad X41t (1.5GHz LV Pentium M)2m 02s
      HP TC4400 Tablet PC (2.0GHz Core Duo)1m 13s
      Dell Latitude X1 (1.1 GHz ULV Pentium M)2m 40s
      Dell Latitude D420 (1.06GHz Core Solo ULV)2m 11s
      Toshiba Portege M400 (1.83GHz Core Duo )1m 19s

       

      Comparison Results for 3Dmark05

      3DMark05 tests the overall graphic capabilities of a notebook, and overall the T4220 did about average.

      Notebook3D Mark 05 Results
      Fujitsu LifeBook T4220 (2.0GHz Core 2 Duo, GMA X3100 graphics)841 3DMarks
      HP Compaq 2710p (1.2GHz ULV Core 2 Duo, GMA X3100 graphics)634 3DMarks
      Lenovo ThinkPad X61 (1.6GHz Core 2 Duo, Intel GMA X3100 graphics)812 3DMarks
      Fujitsu LifeBook T4220 (2.2GHz Core 2 Duo, Intel GMA X3100 graphics)925 3DMarks
      Gateway E-155C (1.06GHz ULV Core 2 Duo, Intel GMA 950)500 3DMarks
      LG C1 (1.2GHz Intel Core Duo, Nvidia Go 7300)1,392 3DMarks
      Fujitsu LifeBook S2210 (1.6GHz AMD Turion 64 X2 TL-52, ATI x1150)810 3DMarks
      PortableOne UX (2.0GHz Core 2 Duo, Intel GMA 950)590 3DMarks
      Toshiba Satellite A135 (1.73GHz Core Duo, Intel GMA 950)519 3DMarks
      Lenovo ThinkPad T60 (2.0GHz Core Duo, ATI X1400 128MB)2,092 3DMarks
      Fujitsu n6410 (1.66 GHz Core Duo, ATI X1400 128MB)2,273 3DMarks

       

      HDTune Results

      Below are the results from running the HDTune benchmark that tests hard drive performance:

      [​IMG]

      Heat and Noise

      On AC power or if the system is ever on high performance it gets a little hot on the bottom. The suede patches help, but it is still noticeably warm. It isn’t uncomfortably hot, but it is warm to the touch. The air being pumped out of the vent however is HOT. I wouldn’t recommend holding the tablet where the vent is blocked… you are asking for it to overheat. 

      Fan noise is not an issue. I don’t ever hear it running unless I put my ear up to the machine. Obviously when I ran the benchmarks the fan kicked it up a notch, but it is still hardly audible. 

      The modular drive is loud. It spins loud, but I think most do. If you are in a crowded library I wouldn’t recommend utilizing the drive. I can’t think of a reason I would be using the drive in a crowded/quite environment but nevertheless. Overall the machine is quite and although there is some heat it really isn’t an issue.

      Keyboard/Touchpad/Pen

      I like the keyboard. It has a little bit of flex, but that really softens the keys up, which is my personal preference. If you prefer a rigid keyboard it might annoy you a bit. The keys are white, so they will get dirty. I wipe mine off with a cloth after every use so hopefully I can keep them as "new" looking as long as possible. One thing I really wish Fujitsu would have included is easy access buttons above the keyboard… or anywhere. I don’t like having to control the volume through the speaker icon. 

      [​IMG]
      The T4220 keyboard. (view large image)

      I am so glad Fujitsu decided to go with a touchpad. I am not too fond of trackpoints found on Lenovo’s X61 and HP’s 2710p. Having said that I think it would have been a wise decision to include both and appeal to a wider audience. The touchpad has a nice feel. It is slick enough to move around quickly, but not too slick that your finger slips all over the place. It sort of reminds me of alligator skin.

      The pen input was a lot easier than I expected. I have absolutely horrible hand writing. I am the only one who can read it and a lot of times I find myself saying ‘what the heck does this say.’ Windows Vista hand writing recognition has really impressed me. After about 24 hours of use the machine very rarely missed ANY words I wrote in my chicken scratch. Writing on the screen is also painless and erasing is fun. There is a fair amount of friction to resemble a piece of paper, which is nice. I never found myself slipping around or wishing for more response. It was quite accurate.

      [​IMG]
      The pen input on the T4220. (view large image)

      I absolutely love the pen placement (as stated earlier). The screen sits perfectly in the center of the lid and the pen clicks into the silo on the left. Fujitsu included a tether so you can attach the pen to the tablet, which I did within the first five minutes of use (I lose a lot of things). The pen itself is good, not great but good. They could have put a little more weight on it to resemble a higher quality pen rather than a plastic one.

      Ports

      My first real qualm with the system is the placement of USB ports and locks. There are two USB ports on the back and one on the left. I am right handed so the placement of USB ports kind of annoys me. I have to run a cable to the back to hook up a mouse.  Another thing is the locks. There are two on the right and that is it. There shouldn’t be two in my opinion and if there are going to be two one should be on the left and one on the right. 

      Beyond that there is a nice array of ports to choose from. On the back you get a VGA out, 10/100/1000 Ethernet, 56 k modem, and two USB ports. There is also a 3-in-1 memory card reader on the front.  A cool feature is the silver covers that go over the ports on the back to protect from dust and it adds to the overall look.

      [​IMG]
      Front view of the LifeBook T4220. (view large image)

      [​IMG]
      Left side view of the ports. (view large image)

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      Right side view of the ports. (view large image)

      [​IMG]
      Back view of the LifeBook T4220. (view large image)

      Wireless

      Not much to write home about here. I didn’t opt for any Bluetooth, but it came standard with 802.11 a/g/n. I didn’t have any problems connecting to my secure network or any network like Starbucks or Barnes and Nobles either. I don’t have an N router so I can’t comment on the speed, but once I get to college I will. Signal strength is good; I get five bars wherever I go in my house or backyard. 

      Battery

      Battery life has been a lot better than some have speculated. I managed 4 hours and 53 minutes from 100% to complete shutdown on power saver mode, with wireless on and while Web browsing. I have the modular battery, but I haven’t had enough time to do a thorough drain test. Battery meter shows 4 hours 15 minutes at full charge so if I went by that I could have a grand total of 9 hours battery life. That is more than enough for me and probably everyone else.  

      Recharging from 0% takes a good hour and a half to two hours. I would say an hour for 0% to 80% and another half hour or so from 80% to 100%. Not bad at all in my opinion. 

      Operating System and Software

      I am running Windows Vista Business, which is great because I don’t get the annoying media center. One thing that annoys me a little bit is the sticker. I have a Vista Home Basic sticker. I guess they either don’t make a business sticker or it was a mistake.   Beyond the sticker issue I really like Vista. It has truly been optimized for tablet input. Pen flicks are great for copying, pasting, deleting, scrolling on web pages, etc. You can really tell Microsoft put a lot of thought into designing it to work on a tablet.

      The only software I have installed is Office 2007 Enterprise and a couple of games. Office is great, but when I learned it in high school it was on Office 2000. This looks completely different and will take some getting used to. 

      Fujitsu didn’t add very much bloatware. I only had to remove two or three programs which I didn’t want. The Shock sensor utility is annoying as I stated earlier, but that is about the only quirky Fujitsu software that was factory installed. I appreciate companies that don’t load their products with bloatware and waste consumers time.

      Conclusion

      I am very pleased with my purchase and can’t think of any other machine I would rather have. From the beautiful screen to the solid tablet functionality this is a well built and well designed machine. The weight, battery life and functionality make this one of the best laptops/tablets I have ever seen.

      I would recommend this to any college student or business professional in need of a lightweight powerful machine. The Fujitsu LifeBook T4220 blew away all of my expectations.

      Pros


        Excellent screen, vivid colors and bright display
        Lightweight with great battery life
        Modular bay drive swappable with modular battery
        Full fledged Core 2 Duo processor
        Great inking experience
        Sturdy hinge

        Cons


          Runs a little hot
          Shock sensor utility annoying
          No USB port on the right side (sorry right handed citizens)
          Too many locks
          Modular drive a little on the loud side
     
    Last edited by a moderator: May 18, 2015
  2. chaos120

    chaos120 Pen Pal - Newbie

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    Great review.
     
  3. kureshii

    kureshii Scribbler - Standard Member Senior Member

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    If the heat is an issue, try NHC. While the processor definitely runs hot if you're running an hour-long simulation, on normal/idle usage I can put my hand on the vent somewhat comfortably.

    The suede is warm, but blocking some of those vents accidentally won't be a big problem - the important vents IMO are mainly the CPU vent, and perhaps the HDD vent as well (under the touchpad). The stock Fujitsu HDD I got runs cool enough that I don't worry about it, though.

    As for the USB ports, they're perfectly placed for a left-hander like me ^_^ sure, it would be nice to have one of the USB ports shifted from the rear to the right, but I understand the limitations imposed by the modular bay... and while a lock hole on the left side would be nice, it would probably interfere with the power jack, so that's alright with me too.

    As for the modular drive noise... I've never heard of a silent modular drive before, honestly. The noise is almost expected with any laptop. At least my DVD+RW is still quieter than the home rig's DVD burner ;-)
     
    Last edited by a moderator: May 18, 2015
  4. incomprehensible

    incomprehensible T4220 Owner

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    Excellent review! I just got my T4220 and I love it!

    You can control a few things (sound, brightness, touchpad) by holding the Fn key at the bottom left of the keyboard and pressing F3-F10
     
  5. Smoothcrm7

    Smoothcrm7 Pen Pal - Newbie

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    I have a T4220 and love it and my system gets very very hot with a 2.4 and 4 gigs i was wondering if any of you have done the windows anytime upgrade yet
     
  6. moeman

    moeman Pen Pal - Newbie

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    the shock sensor can have the sensitivity adjusted. Also, I turned of the balloon warnings so it doesn't bother me even when it does go off.
     
  7. thaluckyspoon

    thaluckyspoon Scribbler - Standard Member

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    Yea I adjusted it to the very minimum spec and it was still going off way too much. It was easier to just turn it off.
     
  8. Sassafras

    Sassafras Scribbler - Standard Member

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    I recieved my T4220 on the 31st of July. I am absolutely lovin my computer. I was worried about not getting the SXGA screen on this convertible, but the screen seems larger than my 12.1" Stylistic Slate, which I know is not true but there you have it. I went from a 15.4" WXGA laptop...and I got to say I am not missing the screen size whatsoever. I also thought I would really dislike the pen by the screen...but I find its not nearly the annoyance I thought it would be.

    I had been debating waiting for the Dell, toyed with purchasing the Lenovo or the new fujitsu convertible coming out. But I am superbly happy with my choice. I sure hemmed and hawed enough over it and so I am happy that what I got exceeds my expectations.

    -Sass
     
  9. Zadillo

    Zadillo Pen Pal - Newbie

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    Trying to make sure I understand this. You mean that you got 4 hours 53 minutes just with the main battery....... and when that drained, and you were running just from the modular battery, it had another 4 hours and 15 minutes from that. So you're saying that with the main and modular battery together, you could have gotten 9 hours of battery life?

    Not bad at all.
     
  10. thaluckyspoon

    thaluckyspoon Scribbler - Standard Member

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    I ran my main battery to 0% until it shut down and took it out. I then plugged in the modular battery which was fully charged. I didn't have time to wait around 4 hours for the modular drive so I only went on what windows vista estimated. We all know that isn't always accurate so take that with a grain of salt.
     
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