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FSC Esprimo Mobile V5515 review

A cheap laptop that packs a punch

Our Verdict

Solid and reliable with a great keyboard, but let down by poor battery life

For

  • Robust build quality
  • Good keyboard
  • Powerful for a cheap laptop

Against

  • Basic screen
  • Poor battery life

The Fujitsu Siemens Esprimo Mobile V5515 (£370 inc. VAT) is aimed at the business user looking for a budget priced machine, either to roll out to a large team, or to use as a basic portable laptop.

The screen is a standard 15.4-inch TFT panel instead of a Super-TFT screen. This means that you won’t find a glossy coating, which is great if you intend to use your laptop out and about for long periods at a time.

FSC builds a sturdy notebook

The display has a slight haze to it, but we found it had an even  tone and images looked satisfactory.

The build quality is reassuringly tough.  While the lid and main body are made from plastic, it’s thick and solid to the touch.  

We found little or no flexing of the system as we used it out and about. The screen is held in place by a single bar that runs the length of the casing and fixed with two robust hinges. This resulted in little or no screen buffeting as we typed.  

Not the most portable laptop

With an overall weight of 2.6kg, you’ll be able to carry the Esprimo without too much trouble. Sadly, when it comes to using it for mobile meetings, the battery life isn’t exactly ideal.

Lasting a mere 89 minutes this wasn’t enough for this system to register a MobileMark score.  

What really stands out about this machine is the quality of the keyboard, which sits squarely in the middle of the main body. The keys are individually mounted and have a solid touch to them as you type. The touchpad is small, as are the mouse buttons, but we found them responsive and easy to use.  

Quite a powerful machine

Powered by an Intel Core Duo processor, his machine has a considerable clock speed. Being a dual-core chip, you’ll find running more than one application at the same time is more than possible.

The remainder of the configuration is very much in keeping with most of its peers, so the 1024MB of memory is sufficient to run the Windows Vista Business Edition operating system, while the 120GB hard drive is average.  

When it comes to extras, you’ll find three USB 2.0 ports, all fitted on the right- hand side of the case. It would have been better if they had been spread around the case to make it easier to add peripherals.  

Cheap but basic

To keep the price down, you won’t find a modem, but there is Ethernet and Wi-Fi, as well as a VGA-out port.  

The Fujitsu Siemens Esprimo Mobile V5515 offers sufficient power for every day tasks, but the poor battery life does make it better suited to use on a desk than on the road.