Fujitsu Siemens Lifebook S6410 notebook review

3.5 out of 5
£900

For

Great screen, good battery life

Against

Not the most powerful of machines

When it comes to notebooks, large machines tend to be the most popular as they offer more in the way of power but if you need to carry your machine around with you, opting for an ultraportable makes sense. The Fujitsu Siemens Lifebook S6410 walks a fine line between these two ideas, being portable but without having a tiny screen and keyboard.

The design is boxy and business-like but the body is solid and robust and certainly felt sturdy on the go. Weighing in at 1.8kg, this is an ultraportable notebook that is great for on the move. True, it’s not the lightest of machines but with a 13.3-inch Super-TFT display there is no real compromise between weight and the amount of information you can view on the screen.

As you’d expect, the graphics are an integrated solution, so this isn’t a portable gamer but it’s good enough for DVDs and multimedia presentations.

Where this machine really impressed whilst mobile was in terms of battery life. We managed to get in excess of 5 hours from the standard battery pack, which is great if you need to work for long periods, as well as catch a movie.

The size of the screen also helps with the size of the keyboard and you’ll find the Lifebook S6410 has a good-sized keyboard in place. In use, we found it comfortable to use and while there was a slight bounce as we typed, which became an annoyance when using it on the commute, when typing at a desk, was more than acceptable. The only real problem with this portable machine is the use of white keys, which gather dirt a little too quickly.

Alongside the keyboard you’ll find media buttons that allows quick changes to your system, allowing you to lock it down, switch power mode on the fly, or simply access Vista’s mobile power settings.

Where this machine perhaps didn’t live up to expectations was in the power department. The Intel Core 2 Duo T7300 processor is a 2GHz chip and with 1024MB of memory, it handles Windows Vista Business Edition competently but the system did feel sluggish at times. The 80GB hard drive is sufficient, but for the price we were expecting more.

When it comes to staying in touch, Fujistu Siemens seem ahead of the game, as it doesn’t tie your machine in with any one telco. This means you can choose to go with your current provider if needs be. The SIM card slots in under the battery and Fujitsu Siemens own 3G Watcher software configures it. We found getting a connection was easy but depending on where you’re using mobile broadband depends on the strength of signal.

Verdict

The Fujitsu Siemens Lifebook S6410 proved a mixed bag in terms of performance, delivering an impressive battery life that most people will be more than satisfied with, while the processing power leaves a little to be desired. On the whole, if you need a machine for use on the road, this more than lives up to expectations.