Advertisement
Advertisement

Fujitsu Lifebook S904 review

Kat Orphanides
10 Jun 2014
Our Rating 
Price when reviewed 
1,191
inc VAT

It's not what we'd call pretty, but this business ultraportable gets it right with a 2,560x1,440 screen and tons of features

Advertisement

The Fujitsu Lifebook S904 Touch is a compact wedge-shaped laptop with an 13.3in touchscreen and a massive 2,560x1,440 resolution. While the S904 isn't going to win any prizes for slimness or exciting looks, it's solidly made and comfortable to use and weighs just 1.5kg.

Fujitsu Lifebook S904

The somewhat business-oriented Lifebook has a few features that you won't find on the average laptop, including Windows 8.1 Pro, a fingerprint scanner and smartcard slot, which can be used for extra security when you log in, as well as a 3G SIM slot that makes it easy to take advantage of mobile broadband services.

The keyboard is a standard issue Chiclet-style affair with shallow, flat, widely spaced keys. They're surprisingly comfortable to use: well spaced for accurate touch-typing and easy to use without brushing against the centrally located touchpad. We'd have liked a little more travel, but this is more a matter of personal preference than anything else. The touchpad is slightly recessed, with marked button areas on the touch sensitive surface. It's a little on the small side, but its sizing is appropriate given the position and size both keyboard and the smooth, comfortable wrist rest.

Fujitsu Lifebook S904

The laptop's massively high-resolution 13.3in display did well in our contrast test, with our calibrator measuring its contrast ratio at 923:1 and its black level at a reasonable 0.33cd/m2. Laptop screens typically have inferior colour reproduction to their desktop counterparts, but we were very pleased to find that the screen was measured as able to display 91.7 per cent of the sRGB colour gamut. The display has a glossy finish, but it's not as reflective as some, making it fairly easy to avoid reflections under bright or dark lighting conditions. The gloss finish also gives a rich, vibrant feel to colours and we were pleased to find that Windows 8.1 handled the 2,560x1,440 resolution well, with clearly visible fonts and icons. Only when we opened a command line window did the default settings seem unduly small.

Unlike many lightweight laptops, the Lifebook has a DVD-RW drive. Its hard disk is a generous 500GB SSHD, which uses a built in flash memory cache to give you the fast boot times and responsive desktop experience of an SSD, in combination with the cheaper, higher-capacity storage of a traditional mechanical hard disk.

Fujitsu Lifebook S904

The processor is a 2.3GHz Intel Core i5-4200U. This dual-core model scored a reasonable 47 in our application benchmarks. It's more than powerful enough to run all the latest applications smoothly. Similarly 8GB of RAM is enough to run Windows and most desktop applications well, plus you've got enough memory for virtual machines or editing massive photos or videos.

The processor's on-chip Intel HD Graphics 4400 isn't really built for gaming: there are other, better suited lightweight laptops available if that's your bag. However, the laptop managed a frame rate of 17.8fps in Dirt Showdown at a resolution of 1,280x720 and High quality. When we dropped the quality to ultra low, we got a smooth frame rate of 35.9fps. You'll be able to play most 3D games at their lowest settings, but don't expect to get play the latest titles in their full glory. If you want to connect a second screen or connecting to a large display for presentations or movie-watching, you're in luck: the laptop has HDMI, mini DisplayPort and VGA outputs, making it easy to connect almost anything.

Where the Lifebook really excels is in its battery life. In our light use test the S904 kept going for 14 hours and 17 minutes. Again, that makes it ideal for business users, who typically don't have the most power- or processor-hungry requirements but need to be sure that their laptop will last through a full day and more when they're away from the office. Similarly, a long battery life is great for a personal laptop if you spend a lot of time away from home.

Fujitsu Lifebook S904

The Lifebook has only three USB ports, but they're all USB3. There's a Gigabit Ethernet port and the usual 3.5mm headset port. The built in speaker is quite clear, but is treble heavy, with minimal reproduction of low-end sounds. It's fine for a bit of online video watching or listening to spoken word content, but far too tinny for music.

We were very to pleased to find that the laptop had a built in dual-band 802.11ac wireless adaptor which, along with its built in support for mobile broadband, makes the Lifebook a winner when it comes to keeping you connected.

The S904 is packed with extra business security features and a stunning screen. Its mobile connectivity and battery life all help to make it very good value. It's not as stylish as the Asus Zenbook UX302 or the 13-inch Apple MacBook Air, but if you're after great performance and a massive range of features, this is an ideal business ultraportable.

Basic Specifications

Rating*****
ProcessorIntel Core i5-4200U
Processor clock speed1.6GHz
Memory8.00GB
Memory slots1
Memory slots free0
Maximum memory12GB
Size27x319x215mm
Weight1.5kg
SoundRealtek HD Audio
Pointing devicetouchpad and touchscreen

Display

Viewable size13.3 in
Native resolution2,560x1,440
Graphics ProcessorIntel HD Graphics 4400
Graphics/video portsHDMI, mini DisplayPort, VGA
Graphics Memory1,792MB

Storage

Total storage capacity500GB
Optical drive typeDVD+/-RW +/-DL

Ports and Expansion

USB ports3
Bluetoothyes
Wired network ports1x 10/100/1000
Wireless networking support802.11ac
PC Card slotsnone
Supported memory cardsSDXC
Other portssmartcard slot, 3.5mm headset port, SIM slot

Miscellaneous

Carrying caseNo
Operating systemWindows 8.1 Pro
Operating system restore optionrestore partition
Software includednone
Optional extrasnone

Buying Information

Warrantytwo years RTB
Price£1,191
Detailswww.fujitsu.com
Supplierhttp://www.dabs.com