Review: Heavy Weight Champ

By SmallBusinessComputing Staff | Posted March 01, 2000
by Alan Kay

Fujitsu Lifebook C-5235
Rating 87

Better left at the office is fujitsu PC's C Series mantra. The LifeBook C-5235 is for those who primarily don't travel with their hardware. For the occasional traveler it offers a full plate of features along with top multimedia performance in a notebook, perfect for on the road sales presentations.

With the budget-minded C-5235, Fujitsu has broken away from Intel and offers a fast and affordable option with their AMD 450MHz K6-2 processor-based notebook. Tipping the scales at about 7 pounds, the unit won't win any awards for lightness. However, this chic looking silver laptop offers a 13.3-inch TFT display that delivers a resolution of 1024 by 768 dpi, a built-in CD/DVD drive, speakers, 64MB of SDRAM, and a 6GB hard drive, all for $1,899.

No need to swap components with this model. Everything a user needs (other than the power supply) is built into the C-5235. The CD/DVD and floppy drives, and the RJ-11 telephone connector for the built-in 56k modem are on the right side, two Type II PC Card slots are on the left. On the rear are PS2, monitor, serial, and parallel ports, plus one USB port, as well as the unit's infrared port.

The unit is 11 inches in width, but the cover measures only 10 inches. The extra inch holds a set of five hot keys that can be used to either launch any two applications, access the Internet, or log on to an e-mail account. The C-5235's keyboard is very comfortable. We would prefer the IBM-style TrackPoint, though, to the hard-to-control ErgoTrac, a .75-inch rocker button set in the wrist rest area below the keyboard.

The laptop runs Windows 98. The skimpy software package includes Microsoft Works and last year's version of Quicken, but it does include LapLink remote control software and Netscape Communicator. The warranty is the standard one-year, but toll-free support is available 24/7.

The C-5235 is not for everyone. It will require a strong shoulder to move it around. If you plan to stay in one place for the most part, it is a good option for anyone who needs multimedia performance at their fingertips.

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