GCN Lab Review: Panasonic Toughbook 19
- By John Breeden II
- Nov 11, 2008
THE TOUGHBOOK LINE has become almost synonymous with rugged
laptop PC use in government. And the Toughbook 19 continues this
fine line in the form of a convertible tablet computer. Most people
will probably use the Toughbook 19 as a tablet, but they will have
the security blanket of a keyboard along for the ride.
In terms of ruggedness, almost nothing can beat the Toughbook
19, which is a real feat given that in its tablet format, its huge,
10.4-inch glass pane faced directly at the plywoodover- concrete
floor when dropped from 48 inches. After the drops, the Toughbook
never blinked, and in the end, it was the plywood that ended up
worse for wear.
IMAGE: Panasonic Toughbook 19
It also conquered the GCN rain forest environment, in which
temperatures averaged 120 degrees Fahrenheit and the humidity was
near 100 percent most of the time. It came out dripping wet, but
with no damage at all.
The Toughbook 19 has a good form factor at 10.7 inches long by
8.5 inches wide. It's 1.9 inches thick when the screen is
folded down over the keyboard in tablet mode. The system weighs 5.1
pounds, not counting the power cords.
It was not perfect, however. Its Intel Core Duo U7500 Processor
backed by 1G of SDRAM was able to score only 323.7 on the Passmark
Performance Test benchmarks, which is a little slow. You might
notice files taking a bit longer to load than you are used to in
some cases, though not by a huge amount.
Also, an optical drive does not come standard with the Toughbook
19, though an external one is available as an accessory. We would
prefer to see the optical drive placed inside the protective
Toughbook 19 shell. Finally, the keyboard is a little on the small
side ' though this isn't really much of an issue
because this is more for backup on the convertible tablet.
The Toughbook 19 might not win any performance races, but if
your job requires a tablet computer that can survive in a harsh
area, you won't find a tougher piece of equipment.
Panasonic Computer Solutions, 888- 223-1012,
John Breeden II is a freelance technology writer for GCN.