Fujitsu T4215 mini review

Image courtesy Fujitsu

To cut to the end, this laptop is an excellent piece of work. It doesn’t have all the flash that some other laptops have. It’s not as good looking as the HP TX1120 but where it lacks in flash it more than makes up for with solid behavior as a tablet PC.

I won’t reproduce the specs because you can find those with a simple Google search. Instead, I’ll list the things I like about the laptop and a few of the things that I don’t, in no particular order.

First, the fingerprint reader works very well and was easy to train. I really like the ability to log onto the machine just by swiping my finger across the sensor. My only complaint is that the feedback window has strange corrupted-looking horizontal lines going through my finger print. That may be normal and it certainly doesn’t seem to interfere with the ability to properly read my fingerprint. Also, being able to use the reader as a scroller is a really nice touch.

There’s an extra level of security on startup using the tablet buttons to enter an unlock code. This is optional and at first took me by surprise since I hadn’t read the manual before using the computer. Manual? What’s that? When you turn the computer on a lock icon will appear in the LCD tablet status window and the computer waits at a black screen for the code to be entered using the tablet buttons. Enter the proper code and the machine boots up normally. Fujitsu obviously was thinking about security when designing this laptop.

Battery life is excellent compared to the C3500, I can easily squeeze 3.5hrs out of the battery It’s difficult to test continuous usage because I have yet to get into a situation where I can use the laptop non-stop until it dies without then needing portability while recharging.

This thing is so quiet that I sometimes think it’s not running at all. Even in a perfectly quiet area I can barely hear any kind of sound coming from it. I’ve never heard the fan at all. Some of this is due to the fact that I run RM Clock in either Power Saving or Performance on Demand modes pretty much exclusively so that the processor is usually running at minimum speed.

The shock sensor is a nice feature. I don’t really know how much good it’s doing me but I can only imagine that it’s a good thing for my data when a notice occasionally appears that the heads are being parked because of an excess of vibration or movement. There’s a simple to use calibration tool included which graphically shows the sensed movement. Shake the laptop gently and you can see the graph change. There’s also a silly 3D application that shows a simple world you can move around in by moving the laptop.

A "parking spot" for pen when in slate mode would be nice. When I’m in slate mode I tend to use the tablet so that the buttons are in the upper right and that puts the pen silo either at my stomach or very close my body so that it’s awkward to put the pen back. Unfortunately this doesn’t leave me with a convenient place to stick the pen when I need to put it down for a moment. I wish there were either a full silo on the opposite side of the laptop or a small slot that I could rest the tip of the pen in. On the other hand, I am using the tether and at least that leaves me the option of just letting go of the pen without losing it.

The wireless lan connection doesn’t always restart after hibernation. I’ve had this happen a few times while using the laptop at home. I’ll bring it out of hibernation and it won’t reconnect to my wireless router. I’m using the latest drivers from Fujitsu’s support site so I know it’s not a matter of getting the "latest code" although it’s just occurred to me to go fishing on Intel’s web site. It’s a minor annoyance so far but if it continues I’ll have to find a solution.

Voice recognition is a bit spotty but that may improve with more training and microphone tweaking. At the moment that feature’s more of a toy since I don’t often have time alone where I feel a need to speak to the computer. I tried writing some of this mini review with the speech software and it just mangled my words, so I ended up going back to traditional keyboard entry.

I could go on and on I’m sure but in closing I’ll say that if you’re looking for a solid tablet PC, you couldn’t go wrong by buying the Fujitsu T4215.

Oh, one more note. The unit I have runs Windows XP. Based on my experience using the HP TX1120 running Vista I’d have to highly recommend using XP on any current model of tablet PC. Vista is a major memory and processor hog even with the bells and whistles turned off. While not perfect, at least XP has had most of the rough edges smoothed down over the last several years of beta testing. Get XP. You and your laptop will just be happier.

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Published by

Michael Harrison

Husband, Programmer, Irish dancer, tinkerer, astronomer, layabout (as much as possible)

2 thoughts on “Fujitsu T4215 mini review”

  1. No, not YOU. These people: Tracy Hooten Warner Crocker Eric Mack OK, I don’t really hate them. I’m jealous. With the exception of Tracy they get to play with new gadgets all the time and the latest making-me-drool gadget isn’t the iPhone but the Leno

  2. I tested this camera for a client. I didn’t have the light running for more than 15 minutes. The battery lasted approximately 6 hours before recharging. The LCD, however, had a few dead pixels – never saw this before. Tried returning for exchange and had to put up quite a fight. Anyone else seen this?

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