CF-18 Drivers and Buttons

Discussion in 'Panasonic' started by Zippy-Man, Nov 27, 2008.

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  1. Zippy-Man

    Zippy-Man Notebook Evangelist

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    Ok well since i have had the 29 the 30 the 18 and the 19 i will give some opinions on what i think.

    First off the great thing about the cf-18,19 is the size and weight. It is tiny compared to the cf-29,30. It is super easy to carry around anywhere you go.

    The screen is 500nit or 540 with digitizer. Now it is bright enough for use but in the bright sun it does have it's down fall. It is readable but not as good s 1000nit of course. The cf-30 has 1000nit which is nice for outdoor viewing. The cf-18,19 compared to the cf-29 it is pretty much the same brightness so no change.

    The keyboard does take some getting use to. At first it will annoy you going from a cf-29,30 to a cf-18,19. But after using it for a couple weeks you will begin to become comfortable with it. I have pretty big hands and fingers and i can use it without problems. I do not type 20 page essays on it just to type short things and do a lot of surfing.

    The battery life is about 4-5 hours depending on usage and screen brightness. I run mine at about half brightness all day and with sleep mode it will last me an entire day. If i am on it the whole time it will be around 4-5 hours. There is only one battery with no options for a second MMB battery since there is no bay for an optical drive.

    For drives i use a external dvd rom drive powered by usb and have not had a problem yet. I do not use a drive that much any way so the extra weight and size savings is nice.

    Touchscreen vs Digitizer. I now have a digitizer and LOVE it. Yes using the pen sometimes sucks but it is just so much better of a feel. The handwriting to text is just awesome. I have had all my cf29,30 in touchscreen and yes it is nice but the digitizer just works better for me.

    There is a small slot on the screen that holds the pen so you will not loose it or have to have it dangling down. I use the tether to keep it from going missing and it seems not to bother me. Since it is a tablet it is much better to have handwriting recognition so when you flip it into tablet mode you can just write on the screen to type in an address or word for searching etc. With the touchscreen you loose the keyboard when you flip it into tablet mode. Something to keep in mind.

    The cf-18 was a great machine it is powerful enough to do jut about anything that my cf-29 did. I moved to a cf-19 because i loved the cf-18 so much after using it. I mainly moved over to the cf-19 for EVDO rev.A support as i use sprint.

    The screen is a lot smaller then the cf-29,30 as it is only 10.4" but for most everything i do it is plenty big enough.

    I would recommend a cf-18,19 to anyone it is a great machine.

    The cf-18 went up to 1.2ghz i think on the mk4 and mk5.

    I had a 1.1ghz and that seems to be most of what is on ebay these days. Just watch out for the specs as they can have gps,wwan, and touch or digitizer.

    The major downfall to the cf-18,19 is they only have a standard non lit keyboard or rubber keyboard. My cf-18 had a rubber keyboard and well i hated it. I cannot stand the rubber keyboard there is just no feedback when you hit a key and they are hard to push down and that is a bad thing when you ar already working with a smaller then normal keyboard.

    I would love for panny to have a emissive backlit keyboard for the cf-18,19. HINT HINT panny :)

    -James
     
  2. capt.dogfish

    capt.dogfish The Curmudgeon

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    I've only had mine a few days, and had it working only for a day or so. It was love at first sight! It is only very slightly larger than a CF-m34, but is worlds apart from that. Its made like a real rugged toughbook, and except for the small keyboard (which is a little touchy to use) it is a real computer. Like I said, I won't be selling my CF-30 for office or home on the kitchen table, but when I'm on the road it sits very nicely on the seat next to me waiting to be picked in one hand to check an email or check navigation or look up a number in my contacts or whatever. I guess the big blackberry analogy is a good one, but you wouldn't use your blackberry to read email or surf the web at home, but you would certainly use the CF-18 for that and much more. I have a touch screen which I might like to change for a digitizer if I find myself taking a lot of handwritten notes on the screen. I started with the touch because I got a great deal on eBay, $331 for a complete MK2 with Bluetooth, 4 hour battery, Verizon wwan (may be upgradeable to EVDO) in like new condition, and because our friends in BC Canada pointed out that the digitizer uses up the internal serial port Ohlip uses for his em408 internal GPS hack. I can't remember when I've been so happy with a new purchase. I can't call it a toy because its no toy. Props to Panasonic for this one!
    CAP
     
  3. Toughbook

    Toughbook Drop and Give Me 20!

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    Gol Dangit! Now I have to buy one... You guys JUST couldnt walk away from this could you? ;)

    Jeez Cap... Whatta deal!


    <Mutters something while walking away about buying yet ANOTHER Toughbook to add to the other 20 or so in the house>
     
  4. capt.dogfish

    capt.dogfish The Curmudgeon

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    Rick,
    Don't say we didn't warn you! I promise you will love it, its just right if you know what I mean.
    CAP
     
  5. Doobi

    Doobi ToughBook DeityInTraining

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    @TB... LMAO.. I was thinking EXACTLY the same thing as I was reading their evals when I hit yours! That is funny. Based on their reviews, I might be leading to the digitizer as well, but maybe Teo can chime in on his GPS hack. I would still like the em408, if I get a digitizer, does that mean no go to the em408?
     
  6. Zippy-Man

    Zippy-Man Notebook Evangelist

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    I picked up my first CF-18 for $150 bucks and it was not working. It ended up only being a bad stick of ram that was causing it not to POST correctly. After removing the ram and getting a new batt and HDD i was on the go. There were a few other things i had to replace but all in all i spent around $350 for an upgraded CF-18. :) I got super lucky on that one tho haha

    I am not sure why the CF-18 digitizer does not have a serial port. It is very strange that is does not have one. I know that i read somewhere that a tablet PC OS is not able to see a serial port or something. Maybe that is why i am not sure.

    I do know that the CF-19 has a serial port on both the touchscreen model and the digitizer model. I checked the back of my cf-19 digitizer and it does in fact have a serial connection. I have not used it yet but it is there.

    I think the OS is what limited the serial connection before and now maybe vista can use the tablet functions and have the serial port too i dunno.


    Ya Toughbook you gotta get one. Since you have had all these TB's but never a CF-18,19 you gotta at least try it out i really think you and anyone else will love it.

    Maybe buy a CF-18 first to make sure you like it then if you do move up to a CF-19. This is what i did first just to make sure that it was right for me.

    -James
     
  7. Zippy-Man

    Zippy-Man Notebook Evangelist

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    I am not sure how Teo is doing his EM408 on the cf-18 so cant really say on that but the CF-18 and CF-19 both have daughter boards for the GPS WWAN and bluetooth so you should be able to just go right off of there and do the EM408.

    The GPS in a CF-29 is the exact same as a CF-18 just a different daughter board and bracket that it hooks too. And the cf-18 has a little plastic square bump on the side.

    If you have a daughter board already in there from having WWAN or Bluetooth then you should be able to tap into that just like if you were doing the mod to a CF-29. I am not positive but it seems like this would be the case.


    Maybe ask Teo what he thinks about that first.

    -James
     
  8. Toughbook

    Toughbook Drop and Give Me 20!

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    Yup... I'll try for one tonight... (CF-18)
     
  9. capt.dogfish

    capt.dogfish The Curmudgeon

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    gotcha!
    Cap
     
  10. Alex

    Alex Super Moderator

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    OK a follow-up on my earlier comment on the missing 9 pin serial com port on the cf-18 Digitizer
    This will have no effect on Teo's em408 mod
    Its just missing the port , not the internal connectors
    I really don't know why its done this way on the cf-18, its a mystery as the cf-19 digitizer has the com port
    Its an issue to me as I like to hook up to and external gps the is not usb ,it uses the standard 9pin serial port


    Alex
     
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