Fujitsu LifeBook U904: ultrabook with docking station

Mar

6

2014

The Japanese company Fujitsu is one of the largest but also one of the oldest IT companies in the world. The group was founded in 1935 and now has 170,000 employees in 70 countries in which it operates. The company has close ties with the German company Siemens, a joint venture that began in 1999 for his computer activities. In 2009, Fujitsu Siemens’ took part of the collaboration, and that last name was dropped and remained Fujitsu.

It is perhaps surprising that this introduction is needed for a reputable company like this, but that is because it is the first time that Tweakers a laptop Fujitsu test. The reputation of the company in this area is not large, partly because the organization focuses on the business market and the market share there is not as great as that of, say, HP or Dell.

What does not help the reputation, is not too sexy look of the laptops from Fujitsu. They looked decent, but also boring and old fashioned. This Fujitsu LifeBook U904 is trying to cope. With that image The ultrabook has on paper some impressive features that the system distinguishes itself from many competitors. Looking at the specifications, we also expected a pleasant introduction to the brand. Appearance and impression

The Lifebook makes a good first impression. We have been given the necessary ultrabooks and get the idea that many thin laptops and manufacturers alike are often inspired by each other’s designs. Fujitsu sail his own course and has opted for a flat, but distinctive design.

The thickness of the laptop is 19mm, and there is no question of a wedge, which tapers to the front striker. It is a laptop with a 14 “screen and with dimensions of 330x231mm, the model is also larger than competing 13.3” models. The weight is 1.4 pounds, however, very low and this is mainly due to the material of the housing: aluminum and magnesium.

Fujitsu LifeBook U904

The cover and the bottom of the laptop are black, the sides and the area around the keyboard are gray. The manufacturer has chosen remarkably little fuss. On the cover shines like a silver logo and unfortunately Intel, Ultrabook and bluetooth stickers are not lacking. Fortunately, Fujitsu has chosen matte surfaces, which fingerprints and other stains do not catch the eye, unless the device is picked up. With very oily hands

Unfortunately, it can not be said for the same. Of the screen That is huge mirror, which may be at work with incident light. Particularly disturbing The glass plate that covers the touch screen from edge to edge, reinforces this effect. Also, the sides of the screen remarkably reflective and there is a small mirror in the top left corner of the cover. This corner of plastic must contribute to a good wifi reception.

Fujitsu LifeBook U904

The laptop feels solid and if your LifeBook folded grabs or for example on the surface around the keyboard, the system gives a robust impression. Fold open mode does fall directly on the screen is quite flexible and the keyboard is pressing. Sharply in the middle

While typing this would only be a problem for the people who hold firmly mashing buttons, except that the keys to ‘soft’ types of attacks do not always register. You are therefore inclined buttons harder to press than usual, making it meeveren the surface comes into play. It makes the keyboard feels a bit cheap and that can not be right for a laptop in this price range. The keyboard has a backlight with three positions: off, normal and bright.

The touchpad is nice and large and has a nice surface, which provides a good combination of rough and smooth. He will therefore not likely to irritate the fingers. Also, there are no edges that irritate the swipe gestures for example, to call the Charms bar of Windows 8, the touch-sensitive surface flows seamlessly into the palmrests.

Fujitsu has lines on the touch pad affixed to indicate where the user must click. The integrated buttons have a good click, not too deep and not too light. On the touchpad, we are therefore much more to talk about than the keyboard.

Fujitsu LifeBook U904

Hardware

The processor of the LifeBook U904 is powerful on paper. It is the Core i7-4600U, a fuel-efficient dual-core with a clock speed of 2.1 GHz and a turbo boost of 3.3 GHz. This would be the chip than the Core i7-4500U, which we usually encounter in high-end ultrabooks this time a bit faster, which combines a clock speed of 1.8 GHz with a turbo 3GHz.

The processor supports hyperthreading, has 4MB L3 cache, is produced in 22nm and has a TDP of 15W. The GPU is the HD Graphics 4400. This is a GPU with not much graphics power, so Fujitsu has not chosen. An Intel chip with powerful Intel Iris GPU For a business laptop that is not necessary.

Fujitsu LifeBook U904

The LifeBook boasts a whopping 10GB of memory, so multitasking and working with many large files should be no problem. Initially we were only an 8GB bar of Hynix memory detect 2GB but turned out to be. Soldered on the motherboard

The SSD is the Micron C400, which most will know as the Crucial M4. The storage capacity of the drive is 256GB, the interface is SATA 600 and the specified read and write speeds amounts to 500MB / s and 260MB / s respectively. This SSD is a bit older, but it is a proven fast drive. It is striking that it is a 2.5 “SSD is it makes the SSD at least easy to replace. Instead of an mSATA or M.2 model.

Before the bottom of the laptop must be removed, but in order to access the screws first rubber pads should be removed at the bottom. Once that job is done, then it is replaced no problem, the LifeBook then has direct access to the SSD and memory.

Fujitsu LifeBook U904

Next page (Connectivity – 4/11)
Connectivity

The Gigabit Ethernet connection is provided by the Intel I218-LM. Ethernet connections are so thick that they at ultrabooks are a problem, and manufacturers were seeking more solutions with proprietary interfaces and gender adapters or down folding flaps. Fujitsu comes up with a creative solution in the form of a retractable tray, which are also open to clap is. It feels pretty solid, but you will anyway have to be careful.

Fujitsu LifeBook U904 Fujitsu LifeBook U904

The wireless connectivity is provided by the Wireless-N 7260 AGN 2×2 HMC, which as the name suggests, a dual-band model and unfortunately does not support WiFi ac. Of course, there is Bluetooth 4.0 support.

Nice is that there is support for 3G and 4G is available. Even in business laptops we do not always see the possibility of using mobile Internet, allowing the user to do it. Dongles or tethering with a sim card The mobile internet access is provided by the Sierra AirPrime EM7305: a card with HSPA + – and LTE support PCI-E M.2 form factor.

Fujitsu LifeBook U904

On the front speakers and the status LEDs. The sound quality of the speakers should have no name. The cover is incidentally not snap and does not 100 percent.

Fujitsu LifeBook U904

Sitting at the back no interfaces or jacks.

Fujitsu LifeBook U904

Right down the SD card reader, USB 3.0, HDMI, Ethernet port and, behind the flap, a tray for SIM card.

Fujitsu LifeBook U904

Links are the power connector, Kensington Lock connection, a USB 3.0 port and a combined audio input and output for example headsets. Fujitsu provides a Kensington cable with it, which is a nice plus. Many connection options, the LifeBook U904, but expansion is possible via the docking station, where the connection is on the bottom.

Fujitsu LifeBook U904

The optional docking station offers four USB 3.0 ports, Ethernet, DisplayPort, DVI and VGA, bringing the total number of connection options considerably increased. We are strongly in favor of the possibility of ultrabooks, combine with a docking station. Their minimum of gates, The Lifebook is easy to put on and easy accessory again stand arm. The docking station or port replicator Fujitsu as these calls will cost 89 euros.

Fujitsu LifeBook U904

Noteworthy is the presence of the fingerprint scanner. This security functionality that most manufacturers forgotten in business ultrabooks. Fujitsu sees the happy as belonging to the standard package of business features, like an rpm and other support for Intel’s vPro platform.

Fujitsu LifeBook U904

Benchmarks

We took our regular series of benchmarks to measure in hand. Performance of the Core i7-4600U
Cinebench 11.5 – Single
System Name Processor In points, higher is better
Asus UX301LA Core i7-4558U
*******
1.45
Sony Vaio Pro 13 – i7 Core i7-4500U
******
1.33
Acer Aspire S7-392 Core i7-4500U
******
1.32
HP Spectre 13 Core i7-4500U
******
1.29
Fujitsu LifeBook U904 Core i7-4600U
******
1.24
Sony Vaio Pro 13 – i5 Core i5-4200U
******
1.16
Sony Vaio Duo 13 Core i5-4200U
******
1.15
Samsung Ativ Book 9 Plus Core i5-4200U
******
1.15
Cinebench 11.5 – Multi
System Name Processor In points, higher is better
Asus UX301LA Core i7-4558U
*******
3.44
Acer Aspire S7-392 Core i7-4500U
*****
2.67
Sony Vaio Pro 13 – i7 Core i7-4500U
*****
2.66
Samsung Ativ Book 9 Plus Core i5-4200U
*****
2.50
Sony Vaio Duo 13 Core i5-4200U
*****
2.50
Microsoft Surface Pro 2 Core i5-4200U
*****
2.49
Fujitsu LifeBook U904 Core i7-4600U
*****
2.25
Lenovo Yoga 2 11 ” Pentium N3520
****
1.76

The performance of the Core i7-4600U are lower than we expected based on the specifications. We looked at whether there was a power-saving mode is activated, but that was not the case. The laptop appears nevertheless that Cinebench the most out of the processor fetches. The turbo clock speed of 3GHz, the 4600U should be able to load in both cores, but is equally achieved, then the clock speed drops quickly to just under 2GHz.

If we measure the temperatures, we arrive at 65 degrees Celsius for both cores when running multi-test, which again is not so high that throttling is necessary. In the single core test clock speed varies alternately between 2GHz and 3GHz, with short peaks to the maximum of 3.3 GHz. Again, the temperature remains between 60 and 65 degrees swing.

It seems that Fujitsu wants to keep out of fear that the laptop gets too hot and therefore applies throttling. Temperatures within limits Indeed, the laptop stays relatively cool at high load, but it is a great disadvantage that the user should not have the power that he can expect on the basis of the specifications of the processor.
PCMark 8 v2 Home (acc.)
System Name In points, higher is better
Fujitsu LifeBook U904
*******
1818
Lenovo Ideapad Flex 14
******
1582
Acer Aspire V5-122P
******
1513
Samsung Ativ Book 9 Lite
*****
1426
Lenovo Yoga 2 11 ”
*****
1404
Asus Transformer Book T100
*****
1222

In PCMark 8 LifeBook set the highest score down, but this suite, which provides a total score, we use not so long. The other laptops are mainstream and entry-level models, and no match for the Fujitsu.
PCMark 7 – Storage
System Name HDD / SSD In points, higher is better
Asus UX31A 256GB
*******
5370.00
Acer Aspire S7-392 256GB
*******
5351.00
HP Spectre 13 256GB
*******
5230.00
Lenovo X1 Carbon 256GB
*******
5126.00
Fujitsu LifeBook U904 256GB
*******
5089.00
Samsung Ativ Book 9 Lite 128GB
*******
5065.00
Samsung Series 9 (2012) 128GB
*****
3767.00

The Storage suite of PCMark 7 does not know much points to the Micron SSD as newer SSDs, but the drive gets enough points to speak. Proper ssd

Practice Tests

We were wondering if the low Cinebench scores are representative of the performance and use our Adobe tests to work.
Photoshop – Retouch Artist – Tweaked
System Name Processor In seconds, lower is better
Asus UX301LA Core i7-4558U
*****
60.31
HP Spectre 13 Core i7-4500U
******
68.50
Sony Vaio Pro 13 – i7 Core i7-4500U
******
69,45
Acer Aspire S7-392 Core i7-4500U
******
70,90
Fujitsu LifeBook U904 Core i7-4600U
******
73,20
Microsoft Surface Pro 2 Core i5-4200U
*******
80.98
Sony Vaio Duo 13 Core i5-4200U
*******
81.00
Samsung Ativ Book 9 Plus Core i5-4200U
*******
85,50

Indeed, the laptop also scored worse in Photoshop. The paper slower Core i7-4500U handles the operations faster.
Lightroom – Export
System Name Processor In seconds, lower is better
Acer Aspire S7-392 Core i7-4500U
******
106,30
HP Spectre 13 Core i7-4500U
******
109.00
Sony Vaio Pro 13 – i7 Core i7-4500U
******
110,60
Fujitsu LifeBook U904 Core i7-4600U
******
113.30
Microsoft Surface Pro 2 Core i5-4200U
*******
121.97
Sony Vaio Pro 13 – i5 Core i5-4200U
*******
123,60
Samsung Ativ Book 9 Plus Core i5-4200U
*******
124.10

When exporting a sequence of images, we see the same picture. Laptops with Core i7-4500U do better. Fortunately, the processor of the LifeBook Core i5-4200U is still able to.
Premiere Pro CS5
System Name Processor In seconds, lower is better
Asus UX301LA Core i7-4558U
****
298.07
Acer Aspire S7-392 Core i7-4500U
******
380,00
HP Spectre 13 Core i7-4500U
******
390.00
Sony Vaio Pro 13 – i7 Core i7-4500U
******
405,00
Samsung Ativ Book 9 Plus Core i5-4200U
******
411,00
Microsoft Surface Pro 2 Core i5-4200U
******
412.00
Sony Vaio Pro 13 – i5 Core i5-4200U
******
425.30
Sony Vaio Duo 13 Core i5-4200U
******
430.30
Fujitsu LifeBook U904 Core i7-4600U
*******
469.20

Unfortunately, that when encoding a video project in Premiere not the case. The score is very disappointing for a laptop in this price range. We repeated the test more than once, but could not beat the time record.

The reduction of the clock, or throttling of the CPU, provides for the LifeBook not a pretty picture on it. There is a ecomodusknop on the laptop and if we activate, we expect nothing, but if you do not use, you’d still expect better performance. Throttling is often done to create a longer battery life possible, or having to turn on the fan. Less at work Nevertheless, we could hear the fan regularly and also makes a high pitched sound.

Screen

One of the components with which it must excel Lifebook, the screen that comes from Sharp. It is a 14 “touch screen with a resolution of up to 3200×1800 pixels. Windows 8.1 go there now good abilities, but some programs are not optimized, showing very little details at this resolution. However, it may be useful for business users to have a lot of text on the screen because it remains readable.

The viewing angles of the IPS screen are reasonable, though they are hampered by the reflections. We have some properties of the screen is measured.
Screen Brightness
System Name In cd / m², higher is better
Microsoft Surface Pro 2
*******
434
Asus UX31A
******
372
Acer Aspire S7-392
*****
313
Air 13 2013
*****
306
Lenovo Yoga 2 11 ”
*****
299
Chromebook 14
****
243
Fujitsu LifeBook U904
****
237
HP Spectre 13
****
236
Samsung Ativ Book 9 Lite
****
225

The brightness is a setback. 237cd / m², or 237 nits, is not extremely low, but mainly because of the reflective screen would be nice if we could screw up to compensate for incident light brightness.
Contrast (full brightness)
System Name Higher is better
Sony Vaio Pro 13 – i5
*******
1305:1
Acer Aspire S7-392
******
1211:1
Sony Vaio Pro 13 – i7
******
1048:1
Fujitsu LifeBook U904
******
1036:1
Microsoft Surface Pro 2
*****
1023:1
HP Spectre 13
*****
970:1
Lenovo Yoga 2 11 ”
*****
928:1
Samsung Ativ Book 9 Plus
***
494:1

The black value is then perfectly fine, so it provides a good contrast screen anyway.
Average color error (dE2000)
System Name In dE2000, lower is better
Acer Aspire S7-392
*
2.50
Sony Vaio Pro 13 – i7
***
4.40
Samsung Ativ Book 9 Plus
***
5.60
HP Spectre 13
***
5.70
Fujitsu LifeBook U904
***
5.91
Microsoft Surface Pro 2
****
6.60
Lenovo Yoga 2 11 ”
*****
8.70
Samsung Ativ Book 9 Lite
******
10,23
Chromebook 14
*******
12.30

With an average color error of 5.91, the LifeBook an average performer. The Spectre 13 HP and Samsung Ativ Book 9 Plus are high-end ultrabooks with similar scores.

Fujitsu LifeBook U904 color

Fujitsu LifeBook U904 range

The balance shows significant deviations, which have the effect of cold-call at the picture, blue predominates.

The screen of the Fujitsu should have particular its resolution and good black levels. The color reproduction is also good, but some brightness and white balance, there is room for improvement. Battery life

As mentioned, there is a low power mode that can be activated with a button next to the OFF switch and which should yield a longer battery life. We go with our test of “normal” use, where we show the energy-saving measures into account. We will therefore assume that the user wants to do some processing power is concerned. Not step back

Fujitsu LifeBook U904

As we saw, the processor is already not to the extreme with this laptop. This would have a positive impact on the battery life?
Battery test browsing 2013 (180cd / m²)
System Name Battery Capacity In minutes, higher is better
Sony Vaio Pro 13 – i5 37500 mWh
*******
8 hours 32 min
Sony Vaio Pro 13 – i7 37500 mWh
*******
8 hours 29 min
Asus UX301LA 50616mWh
******
7 hours 16 min
Acer Aspire S7-392 47100 mWh
*****
6 hours 6 min
Lenovo Yoga 2 11 ” 32170mWh
*****
5 hours 57 min
Fujitsu LifeBook U904 45360mWh
****
5 hours 22 min
Battery test video 2013 (180cd / m²)
System Name Battery Capacity In minutes, higher is better
Lenovo Yoga 2 11 ” 32170mWh
*******
5 hours 48 min
HP Spectre 13 52035mWh
******
5 hours 21 min
Acer Aspire S7-392 47100 mWh
******
5 hours 19 min
Fujitsu LifeBook U904 45360mWh
******
4 hours 56 min
Asus Zenbook UX31 44310 mWh
******
4 hours 47 min

The LifeBook puts no records down and that will partly be due to the high screen. For example, we see that Acer and HP their laptops, showing similar high resolutions, a larger battery capacity provided. That pays off, as seen in the rankings. Sony’s show that it might be smarter to go to 1920×1080 pixels. The image is perhaps a little less sharp, but the battery life’s benefit and fewer heavy batteries needed. Incidentally, we have a new video test used, which we do not have many results.

Next page (gallery and specifications – 9/11)
Photo Gallery and Specifications

Fujitsu LifeBook U904 Fujitsu LifeBook U904 Fujitsu LifeBook U904 Fujitsu LifeBook U904 Fujitsu LifeBook U904 Fujitsu LifeBook U904 Fujitsu LifeBook U904 Fujitsu LifeBook U904 Fujitsu LifeBook U904 Fujitsu LifeBook U904 Fujitsu LifeBook U904 Fujitsu LifeBook U904 Fujitsu LifeBook U904 Fujitsu LifeBook U904 Fujitsu LifeBook U904 Fujitsu LifeBook U904 Fujitsu LifeBook U904

Brand and model
Category Laptops
Brand Fujitsu
Series Lifebook
Execution Fujitsu LifeBook U904
Pictures
CPU and motherboard
Processor Intel Core i7 4600U
Speed 2.1 GHz
Max Turbo Frequency 3.3 GHz
Memory
Memory Size 10GB
Memory Type DDR3 (SODIMM)
Storage
HDD Type Solid State Disk
Storage 256GB
Display and graphics
Diagonal 14 ”
Screen 3200×1800
Backlight Led: Edge-lit
Touchscreen Technology Capacitive
Video Chip Intel HD Graphics
Interfaces
Video out HDMI
Connection (Ethernet) Ethernet 1Gbit / s
Connection (wlan) 802.11a, 802.11b, 802.11g, 802.11n
Connection (Bluetooth) Bluetooth (version unknown)
Compound (3/4G) LTE, UMTS
Other specifications
Laptop Type Ultrabook
Multitouch touchpad Yes
Laptop Extras Webcam
Operating system Windows 8.1 Pro
Color Black
Keyboard
Division Qwerty
Dimensions and weight
Height 15.5 mm
Length 229.9 mm
Width 329.9 mm
Weight 1.39 kg
More information
Specs of the manufacturer Product information from the manufacturer
Price
Since no price

Alternatives
Rating: 0 € 1905, – Laptops HP EliteBook Folio 1040 G1 (H5F67EA)
HP EliteBook Folio 1040 G1 (H5F67EA)

This EliteBook Folio 1040 is like the Lifebook a 14 “ultrabook for the business market. On paper, the HP has a lesser specification, the resolution is 1920×1080 pixels and there is 8GB instead of 10GB available. However, the laptop has the same processor, and there is a connection for a docking station. In addition, the laptop would withstand drops, shocks, vibration, dust, humidity, altitude, high and low temperatures, and sudden temperature changes.
Rating: 0 € 1592, – Laptops Lenovo Thinkpad X1 Carbon (20A7005LMH)
Lenovo Thinkpad X1 Carbon (20A7005LMH)

Lenovo joins the firm ThinkPad ultraportable. The processor is a Core i5 of the Haswell generation and the resolution is a good 2560×1440 pixels. It weighs only 1.27 kg and the keyboard is the quality that we have the ThinkPad series accustomed.
Rating: 5 € 1514.32 Laptops HP Spectre Pro 13 F1N44EA
HP Spectre Pro 13 F1N44EA

The Spectre Pro contains fewer features than the above mentioned business Elitebook or the Fujitsu Lifebook, but HP focuses are indeed along on the business market and as Windows 8 Pro is present. This model features include a fine, wide trackpad and support for Wi-Fi ac.
Rating: 4.5 € 1399, – Laptops Sony Vaio Pro 13 Black SVP1321X9E
Sony Vaio Pro 13 Black SVP1321X9E

Who with 4GB memory and a 128GB SSD of taking pleasure, has this Vaio Pro a good buy. The model is light and has a long battery life. The resolution is 1920×1080 pixels. Please note, Sony Vaio stop the line, so it is unclear how it is with the support.
link Sony Vaio Pro 13: Flexible lightweight
Rating: 4.5 € 1,739.05 Laptops Apple MacBook Pro 13,3 “(late 2013) 2.6GHz 8GB 512GB
Apple MacBook Pro 13.3

Business users warn OS X long gone and the 13.3 “MacBook Pro is a legitimate alternative Advantages are the solidity, the fine keyboard and touchpad fine the Core i5-4250U also features the HD 5000.. – GPU, which is much more powerful than the HD 4000 Core i7 with which Fujitsu has. Finally, this model has a fast SSD of 512GB and MacBook Pros have a good battery life. Conclusion

We had high expectations of the Fujitsu LifeBook U904. On paper, the specs looked impressive. Partly know where the laptop to the promises, it is a nice slim model with a unique look and a matte finish.

We had never tested an ultrabook with a connection for a docking station, but in our opinion this is a godsend. In their attempts to make the laptops as thin as possible, manufacturers cut the connections. In business environments, it is nice to be so thin to use any laptops but the low number of connections is precisely here a stumbling block. Before the docking station can provide a good solution, though it should be of course added accumulate separately. In the case of Fujitsu for 89 euros.

The screen is another positive point. The resolution of 3200×1800 pixels provides a sharp image and color reproduction is good, though it would have been better if the screen could be brighter put, it is in fact a very reflective. Moreover, the high resolution is likely to lead to a lower than desired battery life. You may wonder whether a matt Full HD screen without touch screen is not enough for business users.

The amount of memory is ample 10GB of SSD and 256GB is fine, but we are talking less about processor performance. The laptop prevents the Core i7-4600U comes to its maximum and still run the fan itself heard at times. Not hot., The laptop The keyboard is what we are concerned substandard, while the touchpad is very fine weather.

The LifeBook U904 has a suggested retail price of 1649 euros excluding VAT, including VAT in 1929. That’s quite a sum for which we can expect. Many However, our first encounter with Fujitsu’s flagship leaves us with mixed feelings. The LifeBook U904 does a few things very well and we would certainly find no punishment a time to work on this ultrabook in combination with the docking station, but at the same time allows Fujitsu important stabbing attack. Here had been more.

Scorecard
Pros

Connection for docking station
Beautiful, own design
High resolution screen
Lots of memory

Downsides

Performance lags behind expectations
Poor keyboard
Highly reflective screen

Tweakers zegt: voldoende

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