The new addition of Panasonic’s Toughbook line of laptops catches the attention of market in the form of the CF-54 with a broad range of customization and good specs. Using the advanced techniques to create a laptop two pounds lighter and half an inch thinner than the than competing devices, The CF-54 has a weight of 1.99kg and a thickness of 29.8 mm. It is 50% lighter and 25% thinner than the competition. It is available in various models including performance model, multi-touch model and prime and lite models. CF-54 is the only laptop in its class that offers dual drives.
Panasonic Toughbook CF-54 is a semi-rugged notebook that ensures more protection than a standard notebook, even though it is not bulletproof. As all the four sides of the laptop, full keyboard and display area are plated with magnesium, it can prevent maximum impacts. The honeycomb-style bonnet is also a special feature that offers protection. As there is a built-in-hard disk warmer for both HDD and SSD models included as standard, it can be operated in temperaturs as low as 10 degree Celsius. Drop protection up to 76cm, spill resistance of 200ml on the keyboard and touchpad, dust resistance of IP5x and US military Department of Defence ((MIL-STD 810g) vibration resistance are the prime features regarding safety.
Toughbook CF-54 designed based on “honeycomb” design philosophy has the lid made from a very thick and pleasingly rugged-feeling silver plastic. This new device can withstand a weight of 100 kg spread over the surface of the lid. Even though the laptop looks rugged, it is amazingly light. While the basic full HD touch screen model without any extra hardware weighs 2.1 kg, the non-touchscreen edition weighs only 1.9 kg. So, CF-54 is a perfect companion for mobile workers.
The spill-resistant keyboard of the laptop has comfortingly curved keys with grippy coating top and high contrast design that makes the white letters stand more projected. The touchpad, even though fairly small, is very great and sensitive to pick up our taps, drags and swipes without fail. As the physical buttons below the touchpad are separated, you are rarely hitting the wrong key.
Panasonic Toughbook CF-54 features 14-inch full-HD IPS display with 1080X1920 pixels. The bright, clear and vivid touchscreen is great from a purely qualitative standpoint. The antiglare coating on the screen makes it able to view when outside or in the sunlight. The optional stylus also helps the users to click and tap in Windows 7 accurately. We can also draw and write signatures very easily using it. Toughbook CF-54 allows you to switch the touch screen into a hyper-sensitive mode so that the users can use it wearing protective gloves. CF-54 has Inter high definition audio compliant with integrated speakers. We can also control the keyboard volume. The option for mute is also available.
Panasonic Toughbook CF-54 is equipped with the new fifth-generation (Broadwell) Intel Core TM i5-5300U vProTM processor, 2.3GHz up to 2.9GHz with Intel Turbo Boost Technology. IT also has 4GB RAM that can be expanded upto 16GB. Those, who want to do graphics intensive works like computer-aided design (CAD), can add an AMD FirePro M5100 graphics card. But a slightly thicker base plate should be installed for this purpose, even though it increases the thickness of the laptop from 29 mm to 39 mm. Optional smart card reader, fingerprint reader, VGA, PC Card, USB and other ports are the other spec of Panasonic Toughbook CF-54. There is a list of connections in CF-54 such as LAN, VGA, HDMI True Serial port, USB 2.0, USB 3.0 and SD. It also supports Bluetooth 4.0 and wireless LAN, However, some of these features are optional. For example, we can choose between a PC card slot, a USB key or a smart card reader. The device can be further customized with integrated ports, dedicated GPS, 3G and more. The laptop possesses an expansion zone in the bottom, which has space for all types of connectors including common interface, PCI, PCI-E, Display Portand USB.
Panasonic Toughbook CF-54 has a primary battery of 4200mAh found in the standard version. The secondary battery in the device is very low capacity. Its main aim is to power the laptop, while the user is switching between primary batteries. Turn the laptop over, if the green light is on, the hot-swap battery is charged. So you can safely remove your primary battery without the laptop switching off, by holding down the battery removal switch after turning the laptop over. The third battery of 2960mAh is placed in the slot on the left side of the laptop. It boosts estimated battery life from 11 hours to 18 ours. You get about one minute for this switching process before this second battery runs out.
Toughbook CF-54, the latest addition of Pakasonic Toughbook series in India is priced at Rs 1, 30, 000. Panasonic offers warranty of three years for parts and labor. To conclude, with a wide range of integrated options like dedicated GPS, antenna pass through and contactless smartcard readers as well as the semi-rugged design, Panasonic Toughbook CF-54 suits every need with its four different models.
Suja is a post graduate in Communication and Journalism having several years of writing experience in Technology and Consumer Electronics.