September 25, 2022


At 10.1 inches, the Panasonic Toughbook G2 ($2,999 alone; $3,594 with keyboard) is significantly smaller than most different Home windows tablets just like the 12.3-inch Microsoft Floor Professional 7 or Lenovo ThinkPad X12 Removable, but it is a lot heavier at 2.9 kilos. However, strive taking a type of tablets out in pouring rain or dropping it from shoulder top, and you will be sorry. With its removable keyboard, the G2 qualifies as a rugged laptop computer for first responders and discipline staff, capable of shrug off great abuse. It can be fitted with non-obligatory modules—Panasonic cites 36 potential mixtures—starting from a barcode reader to a thermal digital camera that lets firefighters discover hidden hotspots in a smoldering construction. It simply misses Editors’ Alternative honors, partly as a result of we predict its 12-inch Toughbook 33 sibling is simpler to learn, but it surely’s a formidable ally for troopers, police, and emergency crews headed into hurt’s manner.

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There is a Slate That Leads a Lifetime of Hazard…

The Toughbook G2 is a top-to-bottom overhaul of a 2013 pill referred to as the Toughpad G1, with a tenth as a substitute of third Technology Intel Core i5 processor and 16GB as a substitute of 2GB of RAM. (You’ll be able to exchange its Core i5-10310U vPro CPU with a Core i7-10810U, improve its 512GB solid-state drive to a 1TB unit, and double its reminiscence to 32GB when ordering.) Our check unit got here with the $595 backlit keyboard. A Philips screwdriver helps you to set up the top-edge enlargement modules—Panasonic calls them “xPAKs”—which vary from $65 for an extra USB port to $1,050 for the thermal digital camera.

Panasonic Toughbook G2 left angle


(Picture: Molly Flores)

Panasonic Toughbook G2 barcode reader


(Picture: Molly Flores)

Measuring 1.1 by 11 by 7.4 inches, the pill is constituted of magnesium alloy with ABS and elastomer edges. The closest competitor we have examined, the 11.6-inch Dell Latitude 7220 Rugged Excessive Pill, is 0.96 by 12.3 by 8 inches and weighs about the identical. Snapping the Toughbook G2 into its keyboard dock will increase system dimension to 2.1 by 11.3 by 9.3 inches and weight to 4.9 kilos.

Panasonic Toughbook G2 rear angle


(Picture: Molly Flores)

The Panasonic’s IP65 ingress safety means it is impervious to dust, mud, and pressurized water jets, although not immersion in water. A sliding privateness shutter covers the 1080p webcam above the display. There’s additionally an 8-megapixel digital camera on the again for snapping pictures at job websites. The webcam helps face recognition, however after I tried utilizing Settings > Accounts > Signal-in Choices to register my face with Home windows Hi there, the system activated the rear digital camera as a substitute.

Under the show you may discover the facility button, quantity up and down buttons, a Home windows key, and a display rotation button. Two buttons beneath the display and one to the appropriate are programmable for capabilities equivalent to launching a utilities menu, turning off the show, or taking an image. Behind a latched door on the appropriate edge are USB 3.1 Sort-A and Sort-C ports and an Ethernet port; the AC adapter connector is behind a sliding door at decrease left. A tethered stylus snaps right into a holder at proper. 

Panasonic Toughbook G2 bezel buttons


(Picture: Molly Flores)

The keyboard has its personal energy connector and USB-A and USB-C ports, in addition to an undocking latch and a pull-out carrying deal with that serves as a kickstand to maintain the heavy pill from toppling backward when used as a laptop computer. There isn’t any HDMI port, however you are not prone to be utilizing the system at a desk with an exterior monitor or giving shows from it. Wi-Fi 6 and Bluetooth are commonplace; 4G LTE cell broadband with GPS, suitable with the FirstNet first responders’ community, is non-obligatory.

Panasonic Toughbook G2 keyboard latch


(Picture: Molly Flores)


Cannot Make a Dent in It

I did not torture the Panasonic to the boundaries of its endurance, however I dropped it from three to 4 ft onto a carpeted ground, each as a pill alone and with the pill docked with the keyboard. A number of occasions, no much less. No hurt achieved.

I additionally put it within the kitchen sink and doused it with the sprayer. Aside from Home windows’ contact keyboard and a magnifying utility popping up when water hit the display, nothing occurred.

Panasonic Toughbook G2 right angle


(Picture: Molly Flores)

The pill’s contact display is greater than vivid sufficient to be seen in out of doors daylight. It is rated at 1,000 nits, and it offers good distinction and wealthy, well-saturated colours. On the minus aspect, 10.1 inches is puny—even the smallest Chromebook screens normally measure not less than 11.6 inches diagonally—and the Toughbook G2’s panel put me within the unprecedented place of wishing a show had decrease decision. At 1,920 by 1,200 pixels, the extra-sharp display makes textual content too tiny to learn even at Home windows’ default 150% scaling. Relying on the app, I discovered myself choosing 175% and even 200% to make issues legible. 

A minimum of the contact display labored flawlessly, as a result of I additionally discovered myself counting on it reasonably than the two-button touchpad on the keyboard dock. The pad is just not solely too small, however—like others I’ve tried designed to be used with gloved palms—annoyingly skipped or ignored swipes when used with a naked finger.

Panasonic Toughbook G2 keyboard and touchpad


(Picture: Molly Flores)

The keyboard fares higher, although it places the Delete key on the underside row as a substitute of its correct place at prime proper. You should pair the small cursor arrow keys with the Fn key within the absence of devoted Residence, Finish, Web page Up, and Web page Down keys, however the typing really feel is tolerable—a bit stiff, however snappy—and the keys are comfortably sized and spaced. Even the brightest of the 4 key-backlight settings is not very sunny, nevertheless. 

The cameras seize pretty well-lit and colourful photos with minimal noise. Sound from the bottom-mounted speaker is loud however harsh and hole, with tinny overtones and no trace of bass or overlapping tracks. The Home windows 10 Professional working system is freed from bloatware, with a helpful settings utility that permits you to optimize the contact display for pen or glove use or moist situations.

Panasonic Toughbook G2 left keyboard ports


(Picture: Molly Flores)

Panasonic Toughbook G2 right keyboard ports


(Picture: Molly Flores)


Testing the Toughbook G2: A Tank, Not a Race Automotive 

At this writing, the one different rugged PC to finish our brand-new benchmark suite is the G2’s 14-inch laptop computer stablemate, the Panasonic Toughbook 55 Mk2. So I rounded out our efficiency comparisons with two bigger, non-rugged detachables, the Lenovo ThinkPad X12 Removable and the 15-inch Microsoft Floor Ebook 3. That left one slot, which I full of a standard-issue Core i5 convertible, the Lenovo IdeaPad Flex 5i 14.

Productiveness Checks 

The principle benchmark of UL’s PCMark 10 simulates a wide range of real-world productiveness and content-creation workflows to measure total efficiency for office-centric duties equivalent to phrase processing, spreadsheeting, internet looking, and videoconferencing. We additionally run PCMark 10’s Full System Drive check to evaluate the load time and throughput of a laptop computer’s storage. (See extra about how we check laptops.) 

Three benchmarks deal with the CPU, utilizing all accessible cores and threads, to price a PC’s suitability for processor-intensive workloads. Maxon’s Cinebench R23 makes use of that firm’s Cinema 4D engine to render a fancy scene, whereas Primate Labs’ Geekbench 5.4 Professional simulates well-liked apps starting from PDF rendering and speech recognition to machine studying. Lastly, we use the open-source video transcoder HandBrake 1.4 to transform a 12-minute video clip from 4K to 1080p decision (decrease occasions are higher). 

Our ultimate productiveness check is Puget Programs’ PugetBench for Photoshop(Opens in a brand new window), which makes use of the Inventive Cloud model 22 of Adobe’s well-known picture editor to price a PC’s efficiency for content material creation and multimedia functions. It is an automatic extension that executes a wide range of basic and GPU-accelerated Photoshop duties starting from opening, rotating, resizing, and saving a picture to making use of masks, gradient fills, and filters.

The Toughbook G2 fell simply in need of the 4,000 factors in PCMark 10 that point out glorious productiveness, however you are not going to be crunching giant spreadsheets or performing workstation-style video modifying or 3D rendering on a ten.1-inch rugged pill. Its tenth Technology Core i5 processor trails its eleventh Gen friends, not to mention Core i7 chips, however is greater than highly effective sufficient for the duties it is destined to do. 

Graphics Checks 

We check Home windows PCs’ graphics with two DirectX 12 gaming simulations from UL’s 3DMark, Evening Raid (extra modest, appropriate for laptops with built-in graphics) and Time Spy (extra demanding, appropriate for gaming rigs with discrete GPUs). 

We additionally run two checks from the cross-platform GPU benchmark GFXBench 5, which stresses each low-level routines like texturing and high-level, game-like picture rendering. The 1440p Aztec Ruins and 1080p Automotive Chase checks, rendered offscreen to accommodate completely different show resolutions, train graphics and compute shaders utilizing the OpenGL programming interface and {hardware} tessellation respectively. The extra frames per second (fps), the higher.

Whereas it is gradual by at this time’s gaming laptop computer requirements, the Floor Ebook 3’s Nvidia GeForce GPU destroyed the modest built-in graphics of the opposite methods, and Intel’s eleventh Gen Iris Xe graphics simply beat the older Intel UHD Graphics of the Toughbook G2. Gaming is out of the query for this removable, besides presumably for just a few palms of Solitaire between discipline missions. 

Battery and Show Checks 

We check laptops’ battery life by enjoying a regionally saved 720p video file (the open-source Blender film Tears of Metal(Opens in a brand new window)) with show brightness at 50%. We be certain the battery is absolutely charged earlier than the check, with Wi-Fi and keyboard backlighting turned off. 

We additionally use a Datacolor SpyderX Elite monitor calibration sensor and its Home windows software program to measure a laptop computer display’s coloration saturation—what proportion of the sRGB, Adobe RGB, and DCI-P3 coloration gamuts or palettes the show can present—and its 50% and peak brightness in nits (candelas per sq. meter).

The G2 had a slight however unfair benefit in our battery check as a result of, with no headphone jack to disable the onboard speaker, we muted the sound as a substitute of blasting it at our regular 100% quantity. However even when real-world customers aren’t prone to see the 21 and a half hours of runtime we did, they will belief the pill to maintain working until they’re safely again on the station or barracks. The contact display’s brightness is stellar, even when its coloration constancy falls in need of graphic design or prepress requirements.

Panasonic Toughbook G2 kickstand handle


(Picture: Molly Flores)


Verdict: Are You Powerful Sufficient? Why, Sure

The Panasonic Toughbook G2 is clearly an costly and specialised entry amongst Home windows tablets or 2-in-1s, constructed to go the place Floor Execs and iPads concern to tread. Its petite dimension makes it more durable to learn at a look than the bigger Toughbook 33, although it is half a pound lighter (as a pill; 1.2 kilos lighter with keyboards connected) and has extra modern modular choices. Just like the 33, it is an superior rugged answer that will not allow you to down when issues get tough. Decide whichever you favor, and watch out on the market.

Execs

  • Not technically indestructible, however not removed from it

  • A wide range of enlargement modules and automobile docks accessible

  • Nice battery life

The Backside Line

Panasonic’s Toughbook G2 removable survives drops and splashes, and its enlargement modules are a boon for discipline and manufacturing facility staff, in addition to first responders.

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