Fujitsu Siemens has had a great couple of years. At one time they were little more than a curious brand with nothing to claim as their own. Now, they’re one of the top five notebook names in Europe and it’s all down to matching great prices with interesting machines.

Interesting then, the P7120 takes its design look straight from the Sony TR Series handbook. So, you get a 10.6-inch Super-TFT screen that comes in a widescreen format, which gives you more screen real-estate than you’d think possible on a machine that weighs in at 1.4kg and can be slipped into your bag without too much trouble.

The fact the P7120 is essentially an upgrade of the P7110, which we here at Pocket-Lint raved over last year, explains its similarity to VAIO as this was the best ultraportable around at the time. That’s not to say the P7120 doesn’t have innovations of its own. You’ll find that a larger battery pack than on the older machine has been incorporated and gives up to 6 hours of battery life between charges. To make this pack fit the design, it protrudes from the back of the case but FSC has placed speakers either side of it, which actually makes the sound-quality better than we expected. To be fair, this protrusion does make the notebook a little more unwieldy but the pay off is in the extra battery life.

Considering its weight, you’ll find a dual-format DVD rewriter is present, so you can watch DVDs whenever and wherever. The keyboard is cramped and smaller than most people will be used to but, once again, due to the widescreen display it feels comfortably spaced. The placing of a Biometric fingerprint scanner between the two mouse buttons is initially distracting but as it’s sunk into the case, it won’t get in the way.

Security is proving a popular choice for corporate machines and the P7120 is no different. The Biometric fingerprint scanner is backed by the Trusted Platform Module (TPM) security chip, which can store token and password information independent of the hard drive, making for a more secure system.

The P7120 uses an ultra-low voltage processor - an Intel Pentium M 753, which runs at 1.2GHz. Fitted with 1024MB of memory, the notebook is responsive but as the processor is designed with battery life and not raw power in mind, you won’t want to run anything to taxing on it. The 60GB hard drive gives enough space for storing your media - plenty of room for MP3 as well as work files. With full Centrino branding, you’ll find an Intel PRO/wireless 2915ABG, which offers 802.11g as well as 802.11a as standard. We were expecting to find high speed Gigabit Ethernet also installed but instead you’ll find the standard 10/100 Base-T, which is fine for connecting to all networks.

Verdict

Fujitsu Siemens has hit a winning streak of late and it's hard to see it ending any time soon if the company keeps releasing machines as user friendly as the P7120. The battery sticking out of the back may compromise the compact nature of the chassis but it does make sense, as you'll get enough battery life to meet your working needs.