Notebookcheck

Panasonic Toughbook CF-33 (i5-7200U, QHD) Convertible Review

Sascha Mölck, 👁 Sebastian Jentsch, Felicitas Krohn (translated by Mark Riege), 12/20/2017

Robust. Panasonic's Toughbook is well-protected against dust, liquids, and falls. In addition to a robust case, the 12-inch detachable offers powerful hardware and many connections. The battery life is good.

For the original German review, see here.

With the Toughbook CF-33, Panasonic is delivering a robust 12-inch detachable, which is meant for use in rough surroundings. The computer is driven by a Kaby Lake processor, but companies that need a Windows-7 system can also order it with a Skylake CPU. The competitors include devices such as the Dell Latitude 14 7414 Rugged Extreme, the Dell Latitude 14 Rugged 5414 and the Bullman Dirtbook S12 Touch.

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Panasonic Toughbook CF-33 (Toughbook CF Series)
Graphics adapter
Intel HD Graphics 620, Core: 3000-1100 MHz, Dual-channel, 22.20.16.4749
Memory
8192 MB 
, DDR4-2133, dual-channel, soldered-in storage, no storage slots
Display
12 inch 3:2, 2160 x 1440 pixel 216 PPI, capacitive, 10 touchpoints, native pen support, Manufacturer unknown, ID: TMA1200, IPS, 3:2, glossy: yes, detachable screen
Mainboard
Intel Kaby Lake-U iHDCP 2.2 Premium PCH
Storage
Toshiba SG5 256GB THNSNK256GVN8, 256 GB 
, 182 GB free
Soundcard
Realtek ALC256 @ Intel Sunrise Point-LP PCH - High Definition Audio Controller
Connections
1 USB 2.0, 3 USB 3.0 / 3.1 Gen1, 1 VGA, 1 HDMI, 1 Kensington Lock, 1 Serial Port, 1 Docking Station Port, Audio Connections: audio combo, Card Reader: MicroSD + SD, NFC, Brightness Sensor, Sensors: Acceleration sensor, TPM 2.0
Networking
Intel Ethernet Connection I219-LM (10/100/1000/2500/5000MBit/s), Intel Dual Band Wireless-AC 8265 (a/b/g/n = Wi-Fi 4/ac = Wi-Fi 5), Bluetooth 4.2, Sierra Wireless EM7305 4G LTE, LTE, GPS
Size
height x width x depth (in mm): 46.1 x 313 x 288.4 ( = 1.81 x 12.32 x 11.35 in)
Battery
44 Wh, 3980 mAh Lithium-Ion, removeable, 2 batteries of 22 Wh, hot-swap capable, 11.1 V, Battery runtime (according to manufacturer): 11 h
Operating System
Microsoft Windows 10 Pro 64 Bit
Camera
Webcam: HD
Primary Camera: 8 MPix LED flash
Secondary Camera: 2 MPix + IR cameras for Windows Hello
Additional features
Speakers: Stereo, Keyboard: Chiclet, Keyboard Light: no, MS Office 365, 36 Months Warranty, ruggedized
Weight
2.8 kg ( = 98.77 oz / 6.17 pounds), Power Supply: 567 g ( = 20 oz / 1.25 pounds)
Price
4500 Euro
Note: The manufacturer may use components from different suppliers including display panels, drives or memory sticks with similar specifications.

 

Case and Connectivity

The case of the Toughbook is made of plastic and metal. Panasonic uses black and silver colors here. It should not be surprising that the robust case does not offer any reason for complaint in terms of its workmanship and stability. Panasonic has not build-in only one, but two batteries (22 Wh and 3 cells each) which are both in the tablet section. The batteries can be replaced while the device is running, with one LED telling you which battery should be replaced. There is no battery in the keyboard dock, and you cannot insert one either.

There is no lack of connections. However, the potential buyers are not limited to Panasonic's selection of connections. Some slots can also be selected optionally, such as a SmartCard reader. The slots are protected from dust and moisture by lockable flaps.

The device has two storage card readers: one microSD reader in the tablet section and one SD reader in the keyboard dock. The latter is very slow. When copying large data blocks it achieves a maximum transfer rate of 29.1 MB/s, and 250 JPG files (about 5 MB each) are transferred with a speed of 27.5 MB/s. We are testing the storage card readers using a reference card, the Toshiba Exceria Pro SDXC 64 GB UHS-II. The competitors from Dell prove that significantly higher speeds are possible.

The WLAN module in the Toughbook has an Intel chip (Dual Band Wireless-AC 8265), which in addition to the 802.11a/b/g/n WLAN standards also supports the fast ac standard. The transfer speeds that we measured under optimal conditions (no other WLAN devices in close proximity and close distance between notebook and server PC) turned out below average. The Intel chip remains significantly short of its capabilities. Its transfer rates can be three times as fast.

Size Comparison

356 mm / 14 inch 247 mm / 9.72 inch 52 mm / 2.05 inch 3.7 kg8.14 lbs347 mm / 13.7 inch 243 mm / 9.57 inch 44.4 mm / 1.748 inch 3 kg6.5 lbs328 mm / 12.9 inch 277 mm / 10.9 inch 40.8 mm / 1.606 inch 2.5 kg5.51 lbs313 mm / 12.3 inch 288.4 mm / 11.4 inch 46.1 mm / 1.815 inch 2.8 kg6.17 lbs

Connections

Left side (dock): power connection, SD card reader, HDMI, USB 2.0 (Type A), VGA port; left side (tablet): HDMI, USB 3.1 Gen 1 (Type A), audio combo, microSD card reader, Gigabit-Ethernet
Left side (dock): power connection, SD card reader, HDMI, USB 2.0 (Type A), VGA port; left side (tablet): HDMI, USB 3.1 Gen 1 (Type A), audio combo, microSD card reader, Gigabit-Ethernet
Right side (dock): Serial connections, Gigabit-Ethernet, 2x USB 3.1 Gen 1 (Type A), Slot for a cable lock; right side (tablet): power connection, input pen, slot for a cable lock
Right side (dock): Serial connections, Gigabit-Ethernet, 2x USB 3.1 Gen 1 (Type A), Slot for a cable lock; right side (tablet): power connection, input pen, slot for a cable lock
SDCardreader Transfer Speed
average JPG Copy Test (av. of 3 runs)
Dell Latitude 14 Rugged 5414
  (Toshiba Exceria Pro SDXC 64 GB UHS-II)
155.7 MB/s ∼100% +466%
Dell Latitude 14 7414 Rugged Extreme
  (Toshiba Exceria Pro SDXC 64 GB UHS-II)
136.2 MB/s ∼87% +395%
Panasonic Toughbook CF-33
  (Toshiba Exceria Pro SDXC 64 GB UHS-II)
27.5 MB/s ∼18%
maximum AS SSD Seq Read Test (1GB)
Dell Latitude 14 7414 Rugged Extreme
  (Toshiba Exceria Pro SDXC 64 GB UHS-II)
237.5 MB/s ∼100% +716%
Dell Latitude 14 Rugged 5414
  (Toshiba Exceria Pro SDXC 64 GB UHS-II)
234 MB/s ∼99% +704%
Panasonic Toughbook CF-33
  (Toshiba Exceria Pro SDXC 64 GB UHS-II)
29.1 MB/s ∼12%
Bullman Dirtbook S12 Touch
 
19.2 MB/s ∼8% -34%
Networking
iperf3 Client (receive) TCP 1 m 4M x10
Dell Inspiron 15 7000 7577
Intel Dual Band Wireless-AC 8265
654 MBit/s ∼100% +232%
Lenovo ThinkPad E570-20H6S02M00
Intel Dual Band Wireless-AC 8265
521 MBit/s ∼80% +164%
Dell Latitude 14 7414 Rugged Extreme
Intel Dual Band Wireless-AC 8260
492 MBit/s ∼75% +150%
Panasonic Toughbook CF-33
Intel Dual Band Wireless-AC 8265
197 MBit/s ∼30%
iperf3 Client (transmit) TCP 1 m 4M x10
Dell Latitude 14 7414 Rugged Extreme
Intel Dual Band Wireless-AC 8260
661 MBit/s ∼100% +196%
Lenovo ThinkPad E570-20H6S02M00
Intel Dual Band Wireless-AC 8265
650 MBit/s ∼98% +191%
Dell Inspiron 15 7000 7577
Intel Dual Band Wireless-AC 8265
522 MBit/s ∼79% +134%
Panasonic Toughbook CF-33
Intel Dual Band Wireless-AC 8265
223 MBit/s ∼34%

Input Devices

Panasonic has equipped the device with a chiclet keyboard. The flat, roughened keys have a medium stroke and a clear pressure point. The key resistance could have been a bit crisper for our tastes. The keyboard does not bend while typing. Overall, Panasonic delivers a decent keyboard here that should be able to handle the demands put on it. We are missing a keyboard backlight. However, it is available optionally. 

The multitouch-capable touchpad has a footprint of about 7.9 x 4 cm (~3.1 x 1.6 in). The smooth surface allows the fingers to slide easily. Below the pad are two separate mouse keys, which offer a short stroke and a clear pressure point.

The touchscreen display did not give us any problems. It reacts promptly to input and supports 10 touch-points. The touchscreen can be operated with your fingers (this also works when wearing gloves) as well as the included input pen. 

Keyboard dock
Keyboard dock
Input pen
Input pen

Display

Pixel grid
Pixel grid

The reflective 12-inch touchscreen display of the Toughbook has a native resolution of 2160x1440 pixels. Panasonic uses a model in the 3:2 format here. The brightness (571 cd/m2) and contrast (5.191:1) are excellent. Unfortunately, the display shows PWM flickering at a frequency of 685 Hz. However, this high value should not lead to headaches or eye problems even for sensitive people.

554
cd/m²
556
cd/m²
568
cd/m²
584
cd/m²
571
cd/m²
531
cd/m²
567
cd/m²
548
cd/m²
520
cd/m²
Distribution of brightness
Manufacturer unknown, ID: TMA1200
X-Rite i1Pro 2
Maximum: 584 cd/m² Average: 555.4 cd/m² Minimum: 10 cd/m²
Brightness Distribution: 89 %
Center on Battery: 571 cd/m²
Contrast: 5191:1 (Black: 0.11 cd/m²)
ΔE Color 22.7 | 0.6-29.43 Ø6
ΔE Greyscale 13.6 | 0.64-98 Ø6.2
67.02% sRGB (Argyll 3D) 42.5% AdobeRGB 1998 (Argyll 3D)
Gamma: 5.51
Panasonic Toughbook CF-33
IPS, 2160x1440, 12
Dell Latitude 14 7414 Rugged Extreme
IPS, 1366x768, 14
Dell Latitude 14 Rugged 5414
IPS, 1920x1080, 14
Bullman Dirtbook S12 Touch
IPS, 1280x800, 12.1
Response Times
-36%
-53%
Response Time Grey 50% / Grey 80% *
30 (11, 19)
43 (20, 23)
-43%
49 (17, 32)
-63%
Response Time Black / White *
29 (11, 18)
27 (17, 10)
7%
36 (14, 22)
-24%
PWM Frequency
685
200 (20)
-71%
198 (90)
-71%
Screen
-42%
-67%
-37%
Brightness middle
571
493
-14%
1152
102%
310
-46%
Brightness
555
456
-18%
1067
92%
285
-49%
Brightness Distribution
89
81
-9%
86
-3%
85
-4%
Black Level *
0.11
0.53
-382%
1.08
-882%
0.38
-245%
Contrast
5191
930
-82%
1067
-79%
816
-84%
Colorchecker DeltaE2000 *
22.7
11.08
51%
10.04
56%
5.81
74%
Colorchecker DeltaE2000 max. *
34.14
15.11
56%
19.43
43%
Greyscale DeltaE2000 *
13.6
11.99
12%
10.47
23%
4.68
66%
Gamma
5.51 40%
4.03 55%
2.42 91%
2.44 90%
CCT
6998 93%
10872 60%
5576 117%
5764 113%
Color Space (Percent of AdobeRGB 1998)
42.5
36
-15%
35
-18%
33.7
-21%
Color Space (Percent of sRGB)
67.02
56
-16%
63
-6%
53
-21%
Total Average (Program / Settings)
-39% / -40%
-60% / -64%
-37% / -37%

* ... smaller is better

Screen Flickering / PWM (Pulse-Width Modulation)

To dim the screen, some notebooks will simply cycle the backlight on and off in rapid succession - a method called Pulse Width Modulation (PWM) . This cycling frequency should ideally be undetectable to the human eye. If said frequency is too low, users with sensitive eyes may experience strain or headaches or even notice the flickering altogether.
Screen flickering / PWM detected 685 Hz

The display backlight flickers at 685 Hz (Likely utilizing PWM) .

The frequency of 685 Hz is quite high, so most users sensitive to PWM should not notice any flickering.

In comparison: 51 % of all tested devices do not use PWM to dim the display. If PWM was detected, an average of 9375 (minimum: 43 - maximum: 142900) Hz was measured.

The color reproduction is uninspiring. In the state of delivery, we are measuring a DeltaE-2000 color deviation of 22.7, with the target being a value smaller than 3. The display does not suffer from a blue tint.

CalMAN - ColorChecker
CalMAN - ColorChecker
CalMAN - Grayscales
CalMAN - Grayscales
CalMAN - Saturation
CalMAN - Saturation

Display Response Times

Display response times show how fast the screen is able to change from one color to the next. Slow response times can lead to afterimages and can cause moving objects to appear blurry (ghosting). Gamers of fast-paced 3D titles should pay special attention to fast response times.
       Response Time Black to White
29 ms ... rise ↗ and fall ↘ combined↗ 11 ms rise
↘ 18 ms fall
The screen shows relatively slow response rates in our tests and may be too slow for gamers.
In comparison, all tested devices range from 0.8 (minimum) to 240 (maximum) ms. » 68 % of all devices are better.
This means that the measured response time is worse than the average of all tested devices (24.9 ms).
       Response Time 50% Grey to 80% Grey
30 ms ... rise ↗ and fall ↘ combined↗ 11 ms rise
↘ 19 ms fall
The screen shows slow response rates in our tests and will be unsatisfactory for gamers.
In comparison, all tested devices range from 0.9 (minimum) to 636 (maximum) ms. » 18 % of all devices are better.
This means that the measured response time is better than the average of all tested devices (39.7 ms).

Panasonic has equipped the Toughbook with an IPS panel with stable viewing angles. Thus the display can be read from any position. The device can also be used outdoors in the sunlight.

The Toughbook outdoors (with the sky being completely overcast)
The Toughbook outdoors (with the sky being completely overcast)

Performance

With the Toughbook CF-33, Panasonic is offering a robust 12-inch detachable, which is meant for use in challenging environments. The price depends on the level of equipment. Our test unit costs between 4000 and 4500 Euros (~$3600 together with the keyboard dock in the US).

Processor

The Toughbook is driven by an Intel Core i5-7300U (Kaby Lake) two-core processor. This is a mid-range ULV model, which offers more than enough computing power for the intended usage environments of the Toughbook. The processor operates at a basic clock speed of 2.6 GHz, which you can increase via Turbo up to 3.5 GHz (both cores). The full Turbo speed is only available in single-thread applications. The multi-thread tests we performed were only running at full speed for a short time, before the CPU was throttled to 3.1 - 3.2 GHz. The behavior is identical in mains and in battery operation.

We test whether the Turbo can also be used constantly, by running the multi-thread test of Cinebench R15 in a constant loop for about 30 minutes. From the first to the second run, the result drops from 335 to 326 points and then stays at that level. So the CPU operates constantly at 3.1 to 3.2 GHz, and you cannot speak about a performance drop here.

0102030405060708090100110120130140150160170180190200210220230240250260270280290300310320330340Tooltip
Cinebench R15 CPU Multi 64 Bit
Cinebench R10 Rendering Single 32Bit
5534
Cinebench R10 Rendering Multiple CPUs 32Bit
12072
Cinebench R10 Shading 32Bit
9036
Cinebench R15 CPU Single 64Bit
140 Points
Cinebench R15 CPU Multi 64Bit
336 Points
Cinebench R15 OpenGL 64Bit
42.19 fps
Cinebench R15 Ref. Match 64Bit
97.8 %
Help
Cinebench R15
CPU Single 64Bit
Panasonic Toughbook CF-33
Intel Core i5-7300U
140 Points ∼64%
Dell Latitude 14 Rugged 5414
Intel Core i5-6300U
125 Points ∼57% -11%
Dell Latitude 14 7414 Rugged Extreme
Intel Core i5-6300U
111 Points ∼51% -21%
Bullman Dirtbook S12 Touch
Intel Core i5-3337U
75 Points ∼34% -46%
CPU Multi 64Bit
Panasonic Toughbook CF-33
Intel Core i5-7300U
336 Points ∼8%
Dell Latitude 14 7414 Rugged Extreme
Intel Core i5-6300U
310 Points ∼7% -8%
Dell Latitude 14 Rugged 5414
Intel Core i5-6300U
308 Points ∼7% -8%
Bullman Dirtbook S12 Touch
Intel Core i5-3337U
187 Points ∼4% -44%
Cinebench R10
Rendering Single 32Bit
Panasonic Toughbook CF-33
Intel Core i5-7300U
5534 Points ∼51%
Dell Latitude 14 Rugged 5414
Intel Core i5-6300U
4728 Points ∼44% -15%
Dell Latitude 14 7414 Rugged Extreme
Intel Core i5-6300U
4715 Points ∼44% -15%
Bullman Dirtbook S12 Touch
Intel Core i5-3337U
2829 Points ∼26% -49%
Rendering Multiple CPUs 32Bit
Panasonic Toughbook CF-33
Intel Core i5-7300U
12072 Points ∼18%
Dell Latitude 14 7414 Rugged Extreme
Intel Core i5-6300U
10575 Points ∼16% -12%
Dell Latitude 14 Rugged 5414
Intel Core i5-6300U
10571 Points ∼16% -12%
Bullman Dirtbook S12 Touch
Intel Core i5-3337U
6498 Points ∼10% -46%
Geekbench 3
32 Bit Multi-Core Score
Panasonic Toughbook CF-33
Intel Core i5-7300U
7603 Points ∼9%
Dell Latitude 14 7414 Rugged Extreme
Intel Core i5-6300U
6196 Points ∼8% -19%
Dell Latitude 14 Rugged 5414
Intel Core i5-6300U
6093 Points ∼8% -20%
Bullman Dirtbook S12 Touch
Intel Core i5-3337U
4553 Points ∼6% -40%
32 Bit Single-Core Score
Panasonic Toughbook CF-33
Intel Core i5-7300U
3487 Points ∼72%
Dell Latitude 14 7414 Rugged Extreme
Intel Core i5-6300U
2853 Points ∼59% -18%
Dell Latitude 14 Rugged 5414
Intel Core i5-6300U
2758 Points ∼57% -21%
Bullman Dirtbook S12 Touch
Intel Core i5-3337U
1892 Points ∼39% -46%
Geekbench 4.0
64 Bit Multi-Core Score
Panasonic Toughbook CF-33
Intel Core i5-7300U
7915 Points ∼26%
Dell Latitude 14 7414 Rugged Extreme
Intel Core i5-6300U
6756 Points ∼22% -15%
Dell Latitude 14 Rugged 5414
Intel Core i5-6300U
6614 Points ∼22% -16%
64 Bit Single-Core Score
Panasonic Toughbook CF-33
Intel Core i5-7300U
4096 Points ∼68%
Dell Latitude 14 Rugged 5414
Intel Core i5-6300U
3547 Points ∼59% -13%
Dell Latitude 14 7414 Rugged Extreme
Intel Core i5-6300U
3532 Points ∼59% -14%
Geekbench 4.4
64 Bit Multi-Core Score
Panasonic Toughbook CF-33
Intel Core i5-7300U
8266 Points ∼14%
Dell Latitude 14 7414 Rugged Extreme
Intel Core i5-6300U
7043 Points ∼12% -15%
64 Bit Single-Core Score
Panasonic Toughbook CF-33
Intel Core i5-7300U
4219 Points ∼67%
Dell Latitude 14 7414 Rugged Extreme
Intel Core i5-6300U
3652 Points ∼58% -13%
JetStream 1.1 - Total Score
Panasonic Toughbook CF-33
Intel Core i5-7300U (Edge 41)
241.75 Points ∼69%
Dell Latitude 14 Rugged 5414
Intel Core i5-6300U (Edge 38)
207.07 Points ∼59% -14%
Dell Latitude 14 7414 Rugged Extreme
Intel Core i5-6300U (Edge 40)
206.94 Points ∼59% -14%

System Performance

The system runs smoothly, and there were no problems. The powerful processor and the fast SSD are paying off here. The very good results of the Toughbook in the PC Mark benchmarks are confirming more than enough computing power for applications from the office and internet areas. An increase of the performance is not possible, and Panasonic has already done all that is possible.

PCMark 8 Home Score Accelerated v2
3518 points
PCMark 8 Creative Score Accelerated v2
4671 points
PCMark 8 Work Score Accelerated v2
4495 points
Help
PCMark 8
Work Score Accelerated v2
Dell Latitude 14 Rugged 5414
Radeon R7 M360, 6300U, Liteonit CV3-8D128
4498 Points ∼69% 0%
Panasonic Toughbook CF-33
HD Graphics 620, 7300U, Toshiba SG5 256GB THNSNK256GVN8
4495 Points ∼69%
Bullman Dirtbook S12 Touch
HD Graphics 4000, 3337U, Samsung SSD 850 EVO 250GB
3237 Points ∼50% -28%
Home Score Accelerated v2
Dell Latitude 14 7414 Rugged Extreme
HD Graphics 520, 6300U, Liteonit CV3-8D128
3655 Points ∼60% +4%
Panasonic Toughbook CF-33
HD Graphics 620, 7300U, Toshiba SG5 256GB THNSNK256GVN8
3518 Points ∼58%
Dell Latitude 14 Rugged 5414
Radeon R7 M360, 6300U, Liteonit CV3-8D128
3507 Points ∼58% 0%
Bullman Dirtbook S12 Touch
HD Graphics 4000, 3337U, Samsung SSD 850 EVO 250GB
2151 Points ∼35% -39%

Storage Solution

A SATA III SSD in the M.2-2280 format by Toshiba serves as the system drive. The SSD has a storage capacity of 256 GB, of which about 182 GB is free in the state of delivery. The rest of the storage space is used for the recovery partition and the Windows installation. The transfer rates of the SSD are good.

Toshiba SG5 256GB THNSNK256GVN8
Sequential Read: 470 MB/s
Sequential Write: 264.2 MB/s
512K Read: 403.2 MB/s
512K Write: 265.5 MB/s
4K Read: 25.11 MB/s
4K Write: 93.17 MB/s
4K QD32 Read: 384.7 MB/s
4K QD32 Write: 200.9 MB/s
Panasonic Toughbook CF-33
Toshiba SG5 256GB THNSNK256GVN8
Dell Latitude 14 7414 Rugged Extreme
Liteonit CV3-8D128
Dell Latitude 14 Rugged 5414
Liteonit CV3-8D128
Bullman Dirtbook S12 Touch
Samsung SSD 850 EVO 250GB
CrystalDiskMark 3.0
-19%
-12%
-9%
Write 4k QD32
200.9
176.1
-12%
158.2
-21%
205.5
2%
Read 4k QD32
384.7
304.5
-21%
267.8
-30%
214.7
-44%
Write 4k
93.17
60.07
-36%
62.52
-33%
79.41
-15%
Read 4k
25.11
26.98
7%
27.72
10%
39.21
56%
Write 512
265.5
167.2
-37%
185.8
-30%
264.2
0%
Read 512
403.2
265.2
-34%
351
-13%
267.3
-34%
Write Seq
264.2
207.4
-21%
316.7
20%
267
1%
Read Seq
470
474.3
1%
487.7
4%
278.3
-41%

Graphics Card

The Intel HD Graphics 620 graphics core supports DirectX 12 and runs at speeds of up to 1100 MHz. The results in the 3D Mark benchmarks are at a standard level for this GPU. It is positively noticeable here that the storage is running in dual-channel mode, using the graphics core to its full potential and causing it to deliver more performance.

3DMark 11 Performance
1733 points
3DMark Cloud Gate Standard Score
6511 points
3DMark Fire Strike Score
930 points
Help
3DMark 11 - 1280x720 Performance GPU
Dell Latitude 14 Rugged 5414
AMD Radeon R7 M360, Intel Core i5-6300U
2029 Points ∼4% +28%
Panasonic Toughbook CF-33
Intel HD Graphics 620, Intel Core i5-7300U
1583 Points ∼3%
Dell Latitude 14 7414 Rugged Extreme
Intel HD Graphics 520, Intel Core i5-6300U
1369 Points ∼3% -14%
Bullman Dirtbook S12 Touch
Intel HD Graphics 4000, Intel Core i5-3337U
522 Points ∼1% -67%

Gaming Performance

The CPU-GPU combination of the Toughbook brings some games smoothly to the screen - in low resolutions and low quality settings. This goes primarily for games that do not put too many demands on the hardware. The working memory running in dual-channel mode has a positive effect on the frame rates, which turn out higher than in comparable devices whose memory runs in single-channel mode.

low med. high ultra
BioShock Infinite (2013) 45.229.625.48.9fps

Emissions and Power

Noise Emissions

During idle and low loads, the fan often does not run, and the device operates silently. Even when the fan is running at low speeds, it can only be really heard in very quiet surroundings. Under full load, the noise development remains within limits. During the stress test, we registered a noise level of 36.6 dB(A). The device does not produce any other noises. 

Noise Level

Idle
30.3 / 30.3 / 30.5 dB(A)
Load
30.5 / 36.6 dB(A)
  red to green bar
 
 
30 dB
silent
40 dB(A)
audible
50 dB(A)
loud
 
min: dark, med: mid, max: light   Audix TM1, Arta (15 cm distance)   environment noise: 30.3 dB(A)
dB(A) 0102030405060708090Deep BassMiddle BassHigh BassLower RangeMidsHigher MidsLower HighsMid HighsUpper HighsSuper Highs2031.830.830.833.231.82533.430.231.83033.43133.232.934.631.433.24030.231.129.229.930.25033.132.833.738.333.16328.628.327.327.228.68027.227.7272627.21003030.825.726.43012524.225.823.923.824.216024.82423.323.424.820023.724.422.322.523.725023.322.122.221.123.331525.926.32120.425.94002928.62019.92950023.423.219.219.323.463026.926.61918.326.980027.827.318.617.827.8100025.225.817.817.525.2125023.924.417.817.823.9160025.625.617.717.625.6200026.325.617.817.726.3250024.224.51817.724.2315023.923.917.917.823.9400024.32418.11824.3500021.921.918.218.221.9630020.220.218.318.220.2800021.82218.518.421.8100002222.118.618.4221250019.319.318.518.319.31600018.618.518.718.418.6SPL36.736.630.530.336.7N2.72.61.41.42.7median 24.2median 24.4median 18.6median 18.3median 24.2Delta1.91.91.91.21.9hearing rangehide median Fan NoisePanasonic Toughbook CF-33

Temperature

The Toughbook in the stress test
The Toughbook in the stress test

The Toughbook runs through our stress test (Prime95 and FurMark run for at least one hour) in slightly different ways in mains and battery operation. The CPU runs at 1.5 to 1.6 GHz and the graphics core at 900 to 950 MHz. The device does not get particularly warm. During the stress test, the 30-degree Celsius mark (86 °F) was exceeded at a few measurement points.

Max. Load
 31.4 °C
89 F
35.1 °C
95 F
30.9 °C
88 F
 
 30.5 °C
87 F
31.8 °C
89 F
29.2 °C
85 F
 
 28.7 °C
84 F
29 °C
84 F
29.3 °C
85 F
 
Maximum: 35.1 °C = 95 F
Average: 30.7 °C = 87 F
26.7 °C
80 F
30.9 °C
88 F
29.9 °C
86 F
25 °C
77 F
28.2 °C
83 F
27.4 °C
81 F
24.7 °C
76 F
25.1 °C
77 F
25.1 °C
77 F
Maximum: 30.9 °C = 88 F
Average: 27 °C = 81 F
Power Supply (max.)  26.8 °C = 80 F | Room Temperature 21.7 °C = 71 F | FIRT 550-Pocket
(+) The average temperature for the upper side under maximal load is 30.7 °C / 87 F, compared to the average of 30.3 °C / 87 F for the devices in the class Convertible.
(+) The maximum temperature on the upper side is 35.1 °C / 95 F, compared to the average of 35.4 °C / 96 F, ranging from 21.8 to 55.7 °C for the class Convertible.
(+) The bottom heats up to a maximum of 30.9 °C / 88 F, compared to the average of 36.5 °C / 98 F
(+) In idle usage, the average temperature for the upper side is 24.8 °C / 77 F, compared to the device average of 30.3 °C / 87 F.
(+) The palmrests and touchpad are cooler than skin temperature with a maximum of 29.3 °C / 84.7 F and are therefore cool to the touch.
(±) The average temperature of the palmrest area of similar devices was 28.9 °C / 84 F (-0.4 °C / -0.7 F).
Heat development, front (load)
Heat development, front (load)
Heat development, back (load)
Heat development, back (load)
Heat development, front (idle)
Heat development, front (idle)
Heat development, back (idle)
Heat development, back (idle)

Speakers

The stereo speakers are in the front of the tablet section, pointing towards the user. They produce a thin, bass-free sound. Voice is produced clearly. 

dB(A) 0102030405060708090Deep BassMiddle BassHigh BassLower RangeMidsHigher MidsLower HighsMid HighsUpper HighsSuper Highs2033.633.233.62532.13032.13132.531.432.54031.229.931.25032.438.332.46327.627.227.68025.82625.810025.526.425.512526.223.826.216028.223.428.220028.422.528.425031.521.131.531538.820.438.840043.819.943.85005219.35263060.218.360.280066.317.866.3100064.617.564.6125069.617.869.6160065.417.665.4200066.517.766.5250065.917.765.9315065.517.865.5400066186650006618.26663006418.264800059.518.459.51000063.918.463.91250055.218.355.21600046.718.446.7SPL77.330.377.3N38.11.438.1median 60.2median 18.3median 60.2Delta12.91.212.935.335.132.931.831.83236.535.132.428.93328.936.328.848.32761.52752.924.860.92462.822.763.32269.521.267.82174.82075.919.472.718.97117.770.117.86917.671.817.668.117.671.417.673.717.670.417.571.617.671.617.669.617.459.717.583.630.662.51.5median 69.6median 17.84.62.4hearing rangehide median Pink NoisePanasonic Toughbook CF-33Apple MacBook 12 (Early 2016) 1.1 GHz
Panasonic Toughbook CF-33 audio analysis

(-) | not very loud speakers (69.5 dB)
Bass 100 - 315 Hz
(-) | nearly no bass - on average 30.4% lower than median
(+) | bass is linear (5.4% delta to prev. frequency)
Mids 400 - 2000 Hz
(±) | higher mids - on average 7% higher than median
(±) | linearity of mids is average (11.8% delta to prev. frequency)
Highs 2 - 16 kHz
(+) | balanced highs - only 4.4% away from median
(+) | highs are linear (4.2% delta to prev. frequency)
Overall 100 - 16.000 Hz
(±) | linearity of overall sound is average (29.9% difference to median)
Compared to same class
» 83% of all tested devices in this class were better, 4% similar, 12% worse
» The best had a delta of 11%, average was 22%, worst was 53%
Compared to all devices tested
» 88% of all tested devices were better, 4% similar, 8% worse
» The best had a delta of 3%, average was 21%, worst was 53%

Apple MacBook 12 (Early 2016) 1.1 GHz audio analysis

(+) | speakers can play relatively loud (83.6 dB)
Bass 100 - 315 Hz
(±) | reduced bass - on average 11.3% lower than median
(±) | linearity of bass is average (14.2% delta to prev. frequency)
Mids 400 - 2000 Hz
(+) | balanced mids - only 2.4% away from median
(+) | mids are linear (5.5% delta to prev. frequency)
Highs 2 - 16 kHz
(+) | balanced highs - only 2% away from median
(+) | highs are linear (4.5% delta to prev. frequency)
Overall 100 - 16.000 Hz
(+) | overall sound is linear (9.3% difference to median)
Compared to same class
» 1% of all tested devices in this class were better, 1% similar, 97% worse
» The best had a delta of 8%, average was 20%, worst was 50%
Compared to all devices tested
» 1% of all tested devices were better, 0% similar, 98% worse
» The best had a delta of 3%, average was 21%, worst was 53%

Frequency comparison (Checkboxes selectable!)

Power Consumption

While idling, the Toughbook appears very energy efficient. We were measuring a maximum use of only 5.15 watts. During the stress test, the value increased only up to 29 watts, since the CPU was throttled a lot. The included power supply is rated at 110 watts.

Power Consumption
Off / Standbydarklight 0.59 / 0.65 Watt
Idledarkmidlight 3.6 / 4.6 / 5.15 Watt
Load midlight 27 / 29.2 Watt
 color bar
Key: min: dark, med: mid, max: light        Metrahit Energy

Battery Life

With a script, our practically relevant WLAN test simulates the load when loading websites. The "balanced" power profile is active, the display brightness is about 150 cd/m², and the power saving functions are turned off. The Toughbook achieved a runtime of 7:55 h, which is a good value. If you compare the battery life with its capacity, the Toughbook offers significantly more runtime per Wh than the competitors from Dell.

But this is not the full extent of it yet. Panasonic optionally offers larger batteries, which have almost exactly twice the capacity. While these batteries would stick out from the tablet segment, you would still be able to insert the tablet into the keyboard dock.

Panasonic uses two batteries which can be replaced on the fly.
Panasonic uses two batteries which can be replaced on the fly.
Battery Runtime
NBC WiFi Websurfing Battery Test 1.3 (Edge 41)
7h 55min
Battery Runtime - WiFi Websurfing 1.3
Dell Latitude 14 7414 Rugged Extreme
6300U, HD Graphics 520, 97 Wh
628 min ∼24% +32%
Dell Latitude 14 Rugged 5414
6300U, Radeon R7 M360, 97 Wh
553 min ∼21% +16%
Panasonic Toughbook CF-33
7300U, HD Graphics 620, 44 Wh
475 min ∼18%
Bullman Dirtbook S12 Touch
3337U, HD Graphics 4000, 57 Wh
197 min ∼7% -59%

Pros

+ robust case
+ relatively light
+ bright, high-contrast IPS display
+ QHD resolution
+ 3:2 format
+ individually configurable
+ runs quietly
+ hardly warms up
+ SSD
+ LTE modem

Cons

- has none of the most up-to-date connections such as Thunderbolt 3, USB Type-C, DisplayPort
- bad color reproduction in the state of delivery
- below-average WLAN speeds

Verdict

The Panasonic Toughbook CF-33, provided by Panasonic Germany
The Panasonic Toughbook CF-33, provided by Panasonic Germany

With the Toughbook CF-33, Panasonic offers a 12-inch detachable for extreme situations. The robust case protects the equipment from dust, moisture, and drops. Nonetheless, the device brings a relatively low weight to the scale.

The built-in Core i5 processor offers more than enough computing power for all the usual applications. Mostly the device runs quietly and hardly warms up. A Solid State Disk ensures a fast system.

The Panasonic Toughbook CF-33 is well-equipped for its intended usage.

The keyboard left a decent impression. However, we are missing a backlight, which is optionally available though. The device offers a good battery life, which can even be increased further with optionally available large-capacity batteries. The bright, high-contrast touchscreen display has stable viewing angles and left a good impression throughout. It can be operated with the fingers as well as with the included input pen.

Panasonic Toughbook CF-33 - 12/15/2017 v6(old)
Sascha Mölck

Chassis
90 / 98 → 91%
Keyboard
71%
Pointing Device
88%
Connectivity
60 / 80 → 76%
Weight
58 / 35-78 → 53%
Battery
90%
Display
80%
Games Performance
57 / 68 → 84%
Application Performance
86 / 87 → 99%
Temperature
95%
Noise
94%
Audio
49 / 91 → 54%
Camera
42 / 85 → 49%
Average
74%
80%
Convertible - Weighted Average

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> Notebook / Laptop Reviews and News > Reviews > Panasonic Toughbook CF-33 (i5-7200U, QHD) Convertible Review
Sascha Mölck, 2017-12-20 (Update: 2017-12-21)