Fujitsu Lifebook T902 13.3" (320 GB, Intel Core i7 3rd Gen., 2.9 GHz, 2 GB) Notebook - FPCM1124K

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Most likely the best TabletPC for artists on the market

Feb 19, 2013
Review by  
Rated a Very Helpful Review
  • User Rating: Excellent

  • Ease of Use:
  • Quality of Tech Support:

Pros:Screen resoultion, expandability, Wacom digitizer, build quality

Cons:Driver issues, heat issues, price, battery life

The Bottom Line: This is the best laptop for artists due to its Wacom digitizer, expandability to 16 gb of RAM, and high resolution screen. Too bad it's incredibly expensive.


This Fujitsu T902 is one of the rare laptops these days with 
1) a Wacom digitizer
2) memory expandability to 16gb
3) Core i7
4) high resolution screen (1600x900 in this case) 

Most people don't need all those features, especially the Wacom digitizer. Most people will probably balk at the price and wonder who would buy one. This laptop is not meant for most people -- if you're reading this review, you're probably not a typical user.

Although Fujitsu doesn't market it as such, this laptop is the best thing out there for digital artists for 3 reasons: 1) it has a Wacom digitizer with 256 levels of pressure sensitivity, 2) accepts up to 16gb of RAM, and 3) has a fairly high performance modern CPU.

The Wacom digitizer works very well -- it doesn't have as many levels of pressure sensitivity as Wacom's standalone tablets or Cintiq line, but it is good enough for a lot of work. The stylus has two buttons on the side, along with an eraser on the top. There are a few driver quirks -- some combinations of settings (enabling press and hold for right click, for example) break pressure sensitivity in some apps (like Photoshop), but there are workarounds for the most part. The pen tracking is very good.

The panel also supports 10 point capacitive multitouch, but Windows 7 and most apps don't take very good advantage of it. I basically have the touch disabled.

The CPU is either an i7 3520m, running at 2.9ghz but capable of going up to 3.6ghz, or an i5 3320m at 2.6ghz capable of 3.3 ghz. The i7 is fast enough for most needs -- it's certainly fast enough for most Photoshop tasks and some moderate video editing work. This outperforms my 4 year old desktop with a quad core AMD processor.

The RAM is easily expandable to 16 gb, which I did the week I bought it. Upgrading the RAM only requires removing a single screw and small access panel on the bottom of the laptop. Likewise, the hard drive is also easily upgradable through an access panel attached by two screws.

The screen is very good. It has fairly wide viewing angles and has an anti-glare coating to reduce reflections. The screen does exhibit the typical slight fuzziness due to the anti-glare coating, but it's no worse than most displays. This isn't a wide gamut display, but based on my eyes and comparison to other displays, the colors are quite good.

Build quality is pretty good -- keyboard is nice and firm, the LCD hinge has the right amount of resistance, and there is no flex in the LCD or lid. There is some flexing above the modular drive bay (where the DVD-RW drive is), and the LCD leans slightly to the left, but these are minor issues.

The T902 has 2 USB 3 ports, 2 USB 2 ports, an Ethernet port, HDMI, headphone and mic jacks, an SD card reader, and a smart card reader. The smart card reader isn't very useful since I don't have a smart card, and I wish a firewire port and/or expresscard slot was included. One nice feature is that the SD card reader is connected via PCI express, so you can get very high speeds reading off the card (I saw 50 MB/s on one of my cards).

Battery life is decent -- I get about 4.5 hours in normal usage with just the main battery. There is a modular bay battery that will probably add another hour.

The fan is relatively quiet and unobtrusive most of the time, though it will ramp up and be noticeable under heavy load. Note that under heavy GPU loads, the GPU will clock down severely, which slows down any sort of graphics intensive application like games.

The laptop weighs a bit over 4 lbs. I do wish it was a bit lighter, but it's actually impressively light given its specifications. 

I think the keyboard is good; it's similar in feel to most Apple keyboards I've used. The trackpad is mediocre, but not a huge issue since you have both touch and pen inputs as well.

Summary
A pressure sensitive stylus is a huge plus for digital artists and designers. However, these users need to have lots of RAM and good processors in order to run applications like the Adobe Creative Suite. Very few laptops have a Wacom digitizer, and even fewer can be expanded to 16gb of RAM. This laptop also has the added bonus of a 1600x900 resolution, which works pretty well for a 13.3" display.

The only other alternative is the Lenovo x230t, which has been plagued by quality issues, poor LCD screens, and a strange accuracy problem with the digitizer. It also has a smaller, lower resolution screen.

For artists and other people that would benefit from having a pressure sensitive pen input, this is pretty much the best you can buy right now. If you don't need the built-in pen input, you're probably better of with a normal laptop and perhaps a separate Wacom tablet. 


Recommend this product? Yes


Amount Paid (US$): 1850
Operating System: Windows
Processor: Other
Processor speed: over 1000
Screen Size: 13 inches
RAM: More than 256
Internal Storage: DVD
Hard Drive (GB): Over 50


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