What's hot: Very good audio, the screen has wide viewing angles.
What's not: Display looks a bit washed out.
Reviewed April 26, 2010 by Tong Zhang, Senior Editor
In a large collection of Fujitsu laptops, the LifeBook NH570 is a giant among many ultra-thin and light notebooks. The NH570 is an 18.4” desktop replacement model that competes with laptops like the Toshiba Qosmio X505. The Fujitsu LifeBook NH570 has the latest Intel Core i5 CPU, dedicated graphics and a large hard drive. It’s also one of the thinnest and lightest 18-inchers currently on the market. Fujitsu also keeps the LifeBook NH570 price low by offering a single configuration with no upgrade options. For folks who are looking for a desktop replacement, the LifeBook NH570 will give you the power to run most applications including demanding games.
The Fujitsu LifeBook NH570 runs on the Intel Core i5 CPU at 2.26GHz with 3M L3 cache and 1066MHz FSB and Mobile Intel HM55 Express Chipset. The LifeBook comes with 4GB memory, a 500GB hard drive and a dual-layer multi-format DVD writer. The laptop has an 18.4” screen with a 16:9 aspect ratio and it has built-in Wi-Fi 802.11 BGN (Atheros), Bluetooth v2.1, an HDMI port and a card reader. The LifeBook NH570 comes with Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit.
Design and Ergonomics
The Fujitsu LifeBook NH570 has a large shiny body. The piano black surface covers most of the notebook except the bottom and it has a metallic mix that glitters in sunlight. It’s not as stand-outish as the Toshiba Qosmio X505 that has bright red mixed with patterned black, but the Fujitsu looks dignified and professional. With the same size screen, the Fujitsu NH570 is noticeably thinner than the Qosmio X505 measuring 17.20 x 11.26 x 1.19 (without the rubber feet) and it’s a lot lighter at 7.9 pounds (vs. Qosmio’s 9.7 pounds). The Fujitsu’s 18.4” display has 1680 x 945 pixel native resolution. That’s the same native resolution as the Toshiba Qosmio X505 but lower resolution than the HP Envy 15 which has 1920 x 1080 resolution that plays 1080p content natively. The Fujitsu’s display is not super bright and it looks a bit washed out: the colors are balanced but they are paler versions of their true selves. Viewing angles however are excellent on the LifeBook NH570, so a few people can gather around the notebook to view photos and videos.
The Fujitsu NH570 has a roomy keyboard that’s spill resistant. This means if you spill coffee on the keyboard, you can turn the notebook upside down and drain the liquid and wipe the keyboard clean without worrying about water damage to the internal circuits. The keyboard has decent travel and the dedicated number pad has full sized keys. The multi-touch trackpad and the mouse buttons are slightly off center to the left, and a row of small LED lights sit above the keyboard. Stereo speakers also live above the keyboard, and the audio via these speakers is very loud and full. The LifeBook NH570 has another feature that will not only please tidy users but also can help extend the notebook’s life: there is a dust filter on the bottom. It’s easy to take the filter out and clean out the dust and pet hairs before it chokes your machine.
Horsepower and Performance
For users who hate the confusion of notebook customizations the Fujitsu LifeBook NH570 has a simple answer: currently there is only one configuration. Fujitsu told us that they do this to keep the cost down and the price low, and for the price you get a competitive system that has good specs and handles most applications with ease. The Fujitsu NH570 runs on the Intel Core i5-430M at 2.26 GHz with 2.53 GHz Turbo Boost. The notebook has two SODIMM slots that can take a maximum of 8 gigs DDR3 1066MHz memory. It comes with 4 gigs but it’s very easy to upgrade to the max as the DIMM slots are just under a small screwed on door on the bottom. For video jockeys and FPS gamers, the Fujitsu offers NVIDIA GeForce GT 330M with 1GB dedicated graphics memory. This means you can play games like Call of Duty Modern Warfare 2, Wolfenstein and other graphically demanding games on the Fujitsu. We will show you the gaming performance below. The Fujitsu LifeBook NH570 comes with a 500GB, 5400 rpm SATA drive, and since this is the only configuration, there are no SSD or 7200 rpm options.
We put the Fujitsu LifeBook NH570 through PCMark Vantage X64 benchmark tests and provide the score comparison with the Toshiba Qosmio X505-Q860 which runs on the same CPU but has NVIDIA GeForce GTS 360M graphics. The X505-Q860 is a higher end model than the Fujitsu’s GTS 330M. We also ran 3Dmark 06 on both systems and provide scores for comparison. The third set scores are the Windows 7 Experience Index numbers.
PCMark Vantage Benchmark Results:
Fujitsu LifeBook NH570:
PCMark Suite: 5196
Memory Suite: 2913
TV and Movie Suite: 3635
Gaming Suite: 4671
Music Suite: 4344
Communication Suite: 4158
Productivity Suite: 4620
HDD Test Suite: 3156
Toshiba Qosmio X505-Q860:
PCMark Suite: 6195
Memory Suite: 4536
TV and Movie Suite: 3672
Gaming Suite: 5688
Music Suite: 6292
Communication Suite: 4617
Productivity Suite: 5202
HDD Test Suite: 4076
3DMark 06 Benchmark Results:
Fujitsu LifeBook NH570: 6999 (Benchmarked at resolution: 1280 x 800 pixels)
Toshiba Qosmio X505-Q860: 10,300 (Benchmarked at resolution: 1280 x 800 pixels)
The Windows 7 Experience Index: (on a scale of 1.0 to 7.9)
All productivity software runs smoothly on the Fujitsu LifeBook NH570, and web surfing using IE8 is fast. Third party software like iTunes works fine and the dual-layer DVD drive plays movies and copies files smoothly. Streaming movies from Netflix over Wi-Fi played at 25 fps which is very watchable, but Hulu streamed at 14 fps and playback was very jerky.
As you can see in the benchmarks the GTS 330M is notably slower than the GTS 360M, and our gaming tests confirmed that. However the Fujitsu played Call of Duty Modern Warfare 2 smoothly at the max native resolution and churned out 22-37 fps. The new Wolfenstein game also played smoothly averaging over 30 fps. The only game that gave the Fujitsu some trouble is Crysis which isn’t a big surprise. Crysis played at about 14 fps in some missions with all quality settings at High. Here is a video demo showing how the machine is handling these games and we also provide the settings at which the Fujitsu played these games for your reference:
CoD Modern Warfare 2 settings:
Resolution: 1680 x 945
Aspect Ratio: Auto
Screen Refresh Rate: 60 Hz
Sync Every Frame: No
Specular Map: Yes
Depth of Field: Yes
Soften Smoke Edges: Yes
Bullet Impacts: Yes
Texture Quality: Automatic
Resolution: 1680 x 945
Anti-aliasing quality: Off
Objects Quality: High
Shadows Quality: High
Physics Quality: High
Shaders Quality: High
Volumetric Effects Quality: High
Game Effects Quality: High
Postprocessing Quality: High
Particles Quality: High
Water Quality: High
Sound Quality: High
Resolution: 1680 x 945
Refresh Rate: 60
Machine Performance: High
Shadow Quality: High
Post Process Quality: High
Detailed Maps: Enabled
Texture Filtering: Anisotropic (middle setting)
The Fujitsu LifeBook NH570 runs quite cool. The CPUs hover mostly at 40-42 degrees Celsius and the GPU at 41 degrees Celsius when running productivity tools, surfing the web and watching DVDs. After hours of running games like Crysis, Modern Warfare 2 and Wolfenstein, the CPUs get up to 49 degrees Celsius and the GPU to 52 degrees Celsius with the GPU fan 100% deployed. The machine’s large body and internal copper heat pipe help keep the laptop cool, and Intel’s Core i5 is a relatively cool running CPU.
Ports and Slots
The Fujitsu LifeBook NH570 has plenty of ports including 3 USB 2.0 ports, a VGA out, an Ethernet jack and an eSATA port. For multimedia, the Fujitsu offers an HDMI port, a mic in and a headphone /SPDIF combo jack. For expansion, the LifeBook NH570 has an ExpressCard slot (34mm/54mm) and a multimedia expansion card slot that works with Memory Stick, Memory Stick Pro and SD cards. There is also a security lock slot and a 1.3 megapixel webcam. The laptop doesn’t have a fingerprint scanner.
The Fujitsu LifeBook NH570 comes with a standard 8-cell battery that’s 5200 mAh in capacity, and that’s not a beefy battery for a laptop this size. The notebook lasts over 3 hours running productivity apps, web surfing and checking emails at default power settings. In our real life battery tests with power management set to Power Saver, the notebook lasted 2:15 hours streaming Hulu and 2 hours playing a DVD. For a notebook this size we don’t expect users to be away from a power outlet often, but if you need extra battery power, you can get an extra standard battery from Fujitsu for $149. The Fujitsu LifeBook NH570 comes with an auto-sensing 100-240V AC charger that’s not nearly as big as the one that comes with the Toshiba Qosmio X505, and the LifeBook charges quite fast – about a couple of hours to fully charge.
The Fujitsu LifeBook NH570 comes with Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit and Microsoft Works. There is a minimal software bundle from Fujitsu that includes a driver update app and utilities. Third-party software includes CyberLink YouCam, CyberLink PowerDVD and Power Director, CyberLink MakeDisc and Roxio Disc Creator. Trial software includes a Microsoft Office Home and Student 2007 60-day trial and Norton Internet Security 2010.
The Fujitsu LifeBook NH570 has competitive specs and pricing. For most home computer users who want the luxury of a desktop-sized screen but also want to be able to move their computer around occasionally, the LifeBook NH570 can handle most tasks with ease including video streaming (except streaming Hulu) and DVD playback. It can handle most demanding games just fine, though for weekend LAN partygoers who require more graphics power and have the cash, the Toshiba Qosmio X505 offers more expensive models with more CPU and graphics power and even the similarly priced X505-Q860 has a superior GPU. We like the audio quality, the wide viewing angle and the spill resistant keyboard on the Fujitsu, and it’s thinner and lighter than the Toshiba Qosmio X505.
Pro: Very good audio, the screen has wide viewing angles.
Display: 18.4” widescreen TFT LCD display, 220 nits, 1680 x 945 resolution, 16:9 aspect ratio, native support for 720p content. VGA port onboard. NVIDIA GeForce GTS 330M with 1GB discrete graphics memory.
Battery: 8-cell 5200 mAh Lithium Ion battery, 14.4V. Power supply: 100W (19V DC, 5.27A) Auto-sensing, 100-240V.
Performance: Intel Core i5-M430 at 2.26 GHz (2.53GHz with Turbo Boost Technology), 3MB L3 cache, 1066 MHz FSB. 4GB DDR3 1066MHz memory, 8 gigs max. Two main memory slots, both may be occupied. 500GB Serial-ATA drive, 5400 rpm.
Size: 17.20 x 11.26 x 1.19 (1.80 with rubber feet) inches. Weight: starts at 7.9 pounds.
Drives: Dual-layer multi-format DVD writer.
Networking: 10/100 Ethernet (Atheros), WiFi 802.11b/g/n (Atheros) and Bluetooth v2.1. 1.3 megapxel webcam with built-in mic.
Ports and Slots: 3 USB, eSATA port, VGA, Ethernet RJ45, mic input port, headphone and S/P DIF combo jack, HDMI port, multimedia reader and ExpressCard 34mm/54mm slot.
Audio: Stereo speakers, Dolby Home Theater.
Software: Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit Edition OS. Microsoft Works 9 included. 3rd party software includes Adobe Reader, CyberLink YouCam, Roxio Creator, 2010, CyberLink MakeDisc, CyberLink PowerDirector and CyberLink PowerDVD. MS Office 2007 60-day trial software and Norton Internet Security 2010 30-day trial included.