Fujitsu Lifebook U772 review: Fujitsu Lifebook U772

Typical Price: $2,488.00
3 stars

CNET Editors' Rating

The Good Aggressive, attractive design. 3G WWAN module. Gigabit Ethernet. Good performance.

The Bad Uninspiring screen. Terrible keyboard. Keyboard isn't backlit. Creates quite a whine under load.

The Bottom Line Despite admirable performance and good battery life, an uninspiring screen, terrible keyboard and high price keeps us from recommending the U772 to either consumers or businesses.

6.0 Overall

The only company to come later to the ultrabook game than Sony, was Fujitsu — and even with the Lifebook U772, the Japanese company is tentative about stepping into the space.

Not that you could tell from the brazen metallic red outer shell of its Lifebook U772, along with its black rim and aggressive brushed black metal interior. The closest design analogue, really, is "sports car".

Connectivity

  • USB 3.0: 2
  • USB 2.0: 1
  • Optical: None
  • Video: HDMI
  • Ethernet: Gigabit
  • Wireless: Dual-channel 802.11n, Bluetooth, 3G WWAN module

The screen is a little bit flexible, but bendable enough to be a concern — and while there's a remnant wobble after opening, the screen stays reasonably still while typing.

It's here that we come across our two biggest problems: the display is uninspiring and the keyboard leaves a lot to be desired. Sure, the fact that the 14-inch, 1366x768 is matte is a good start, and the range of motion of the lid is flexible enough that you can approximate the best viewing angle for your height. The colours, though, never seem properly saturated or vibrant, and blacks are more of a dark grey, depending on where your head is. Whether it's the panel or the anti-glare coating, it's not a good result.

The keyboard is simply too shallow to be comfortable, and quite unpleasant to type on. While you can adjust, the lack of tactile feedback is jarring, occasionally resulting in dropped letters. Don't expect a keyboard backlight here, either; Fujitsu is wary of its impact on battery life.

Like the MacBook Air and Asus ZenBook, the U772 also "buzzes" with electrical charge if you run your fingers across the surface of the wrist rest while the power is plugged in. It's not a deal breaker, but can be disconcerting.

With those complaints out of the way, the rest of the machine is passable. The touchpad is a stock-standard Synaptics, there are two USB 3.0 ports, a single USB 2.0 port, a headphone jack, SD card reader and a custom gigabit Ethernet port, that plugs into a supplied adapter. As a pleasant surprise, it is Intel controlled, as is the 2.4GHz/5GHz 802.11n.

Bluetooth is included thanks to Broadcomm's BC20702, and the whole thing runs off Intel's Core i5 3427U @ 1.8GHz, with 4GB of RAM, a 500GB hard drive and 32GB SanDisk i100 SSD for caching. There's a docking connector on the bottom for a port replicator, adding another four USB 3.0 ports, DVI, VGA, DisplayPort and gigabit Ethernet.

Application performance

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