Calguns.net  

Home My iTrader Join the NRA Donate to CGSSA Sponsors CGN Google Search
CA Semiauto Ban(AW)ID Flowchart CA Handgun Ban ID Flowchart CA Shotgun Ban ID Flowchart
Go Back   Calguns.net > GENERAL DISCUSSION > Technology and Internet
Register FAQ Members List Calendar Mark Forums Read

Technology and Internet Emerging and current tech related issues. Internet, DRM, IP, and other technology related discussions.

Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1  
Old 09-30-2019, 6:56 AM
Romeo_alpha01's Avatar
Romeo_alpha01 Romeo_alpha01 is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2017
Location: Fairfield, CA
Posts: 1,117
iTrader: 27 / 100%
Default Rugged Laptops: Panasonic Toughbook vs General Dynamics

In the market for a one and done laptop. I have a tendency to fumble and run equipment hard. I’m looking for something I can continually upgrade and retrofit to keep up with newer features. This is strictly a no frills work laptop.

In my research I’ve narrowed it down to the Toughbook CF series but I also came across the GD8200 laptops. Specs seem to meet my needs. I use the toughbook at my work right now, but I have zero experience with General dynamics.

Seeing these two laptops are in use with military and first responders, what would you choose and why?
__________________
Reply With Quote
  #2  
Old 09-30-2019, 6:57 AM
MJB's Avatar
MJB MJB is online now
CGSSA Associate
 
Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: San Diego
Posts: 4,433
iTrader: 0 / 0%
Default

Tagged
__________________
One life so don't blow it......Always die with your boots on!
Reply With Quote
  #3  
Old 09-30-2019, 8:39 AM
Dragunov's Avatar
Dragunov Dragunov is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2008
Location: TEXAS and FREEDOM!!
Posts: 1,544
iTrader: 0 / 0%
Default

I'd go with the Panasonic. Simply because of the parts availability if you need to replace something. They're much more common.
Reply With Quote
  #4  
Old 09-30-2019, 11:29 AM
ibanezfoo's Avatar
ibanezfoo ibanezfoo is offline
Calguns Addict
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: Wimberley, TX
Posts: 7,079
iTrader: 2 / 100%
Default

Really depends on what you are doing with it. You will be paying a crapton of money for a computer with average specs. We use 2 variations of the latoptops from Trimble, which are really just reboxed Panasonics from what I can tell. Our price on those is about $9000... but that includes GPS, Trimble radios for the robots, etc... Those are definitely rugged. Our guys have dropped them off multi story buildings and they have survived. Dell makes a few different ones. I got to go to their rugged testing lab and throw some laptops off ladders and stuff, as well as see all their testing machines... sand blasters, rain simulators, etc. If you are ever in the Austin area its a worthwhile trip to see if you can check it out. Anyway, Dell has a tablet which is nice and durable, but expensive. They also have a laptop that has a touchscreen that flips around to the front. Its very weird. It is meant specifically for police and fire (the PD helped develop it). It was really expensive and we couldn't find a use for it. Its meant for vehicles. Supposedly works in up to 200deg heat or something.

Anyway, these rugged things are not really "one and done" type machines... they are generally purpose built for cars, construction, or whatever... For standard laptops that are a little more durable we've had good luck with the metal Dell Precisions, the old thick plastic IBMs...actually those are about the only ones that I've seen dropped off cars and stuff that have survived.
__________________
"A rational mind does not work under compulsion; it does not subordinate its grasp of reality to anyone’s orders, directives, or controls; it does not sacrifice its knowledge, its view of the truth, to anyone’s opinions, threats, wishes, plans, or “welfare.” Such a mind may be hampered by others, it may be silenced, proscribed, imprisoned, or destroyed; it cannot be forced; a gun is not an argument."

Last edited by ibanezfoo; 09-30-2019 at 11:31 AM..
Reply With Quote
  #5  
Old 09-30-2019, 1:21 PM
Romeo_alpha01's Avatar
Romeo_alpha01 Romeo_alpha01 is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2017
Location: Fairfield, CA
Posts: 1,117
iTrader: 27 / 100%
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by ibanezfoo View Post
Really depends on what you are doing with it. You will be paying a crapton of money for a computer with average specs. We use 2 variations of the latoptops from Trimble, which are really just reboxed Panasonics from what I can tell. Our price on those is about $9000... but that includes GPS, Trimble radios for the robots, etc... Those are definitely rugged. Our guys have dropped them off multi story buildings and they have survived. Dell makes a few different ones. I got to go to their rugged testing lab and throw some laptops off ladders and stuff, as well as see all their testing machines... sand blasters, rain simulators, etc. If you are ever in the Austin area its a worthwhile trip to see if you can check it out. Anyway, Dell has a tablet which is nice and durable, but expensive. They also have a laptop that has a touchscreen that flips around to the front. Its very weird. It is meant specifically for police and fire (the PD helped develop it). It was really expensive and we couldn't find a use for it. Its meant for vehicles. Supposedly works in up to 200deg heat or something.

Anyway, these rugged things are not really "one and done" type machines... they are generally purpose built for cars, construction, or whatever... For standard laptops that are a little more durable we've had good luck with the metal Dell Precisions, the old thick plastic IBMs...actually those are about the only ones that I've seen dropped off cars and stuff that have survived.
It’s simply just a work computer at best, mostly word documents, graphing, data display, internet. Occasionally I’d like to use it for diagnostic work (which I already do with a Toughbook at work when diagnosing heavy equipment). I don’t need it for video editing, and I don’t think I’ll really require any GPS features unless I’m convinced I really need that feature. I’ll be using this everywhere, including a shop environment (think cars and reloading bench).

I realize electronics become obsolescent in short order, so if I can get a rigged laptop where I can change out memory and hard drives on the fly, or upgrade the CPU, that would be great. At work I currently use the older CF-30 with the Core Duo. The general dynamics and more expensive newer toughbooks use the i7 which is what I used to have in the surface pro 3.
__________________
Reply With Quote
  #6  
Old 09-30-2019, 8:06 PM
ibanezfoo's Avatar
ibanezfoo ibanezfoo is offline
Calguns Addict
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: Wimberley, TX
Posts: 7,079
iTrader: 2 / 100%
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Romeo_alpha01 View Post
It’s simply just a work computer at best, mostly word documents, graphing, data display, internet. Occasionally I’d like to use it for diagnostic work (which I already do with a Toughbook at work when diagnosing heavy equipment). I don’t need it for video editing, and I don’t think I’ll really require any GPS features unless I’m convinced I really need that feature. I’ll be using this everywhere, including a shop environment (think cars and reloading bench).

I realize electronics become obsolescent in short order, so if I can get a rigged laptop where I can change out memory and hard drives on the fly, or upgrade the CPU, that would be great. At work I currently use the older CF-30 with the Core Duo. The general dynamics and more expensive newer toughbooks use the i7 which is what I used to have in the surface pro 3.
I haven’t seen any ruggedized laptops that are also able to easily swap out parts because they are typically sealed up pretty well for their IP certifications. Laptops in general aren’t all that upgradable. You can always swap out the hard drives and swap RAM, but the max RAM is typically fairly limited and the CPUs are almost never swappable without removing the motherboard. For that type of thing you are looking more at the gaming type machines as there’s usually just a single panel to pop off and get at that stuff, or 1 screw that holds the HD in that slides out the side. At any rate, out in the field you almost always see the Panasonic’s exclusively, as far as rugged goes. (Or the Trimble which is the same thing). We tested the Dells in house, and they were nice, but just too expensive for what they were. Check out their rugged extreme series. They are pressure sealed. We threw them off ladders and sprayed them with high pressure hoses in the lab. Can’t kill them. Well, shooting them kills them, they also test them at the range. Putting ball bearings on the screen and running them over with an f150 does not kill them.
__________________
"A rational mind does not work under compulsion; it does not subordinate its grasp of reality to anyone’s orders, directives, or controls; it does not sacrifice its knowledge, its view of the truth, to anyone’s opinions, threats, wishes, plans, or “welfare.” Such a mind may be hampered by others, it may be silenced, proscribed, imprisoned, or destroyed; it cannot be forced; a gun is not an argument."
Reply With Quote
  #7  
Old 10-01-2019, 11:25 AM
Romeo_alpha01's Avatar
Romeo_alpha01 Romeo_alpha01 is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2017
Location: Fairfield, CA
Posts: 1,117
iTrader: 27 / 100%
Default

Well after doing more research, I think the CF-31 is going to be my choice. I really cant find much info on the GD8200, and if I choose to upgrade the CF-31, I still have plenty of options.
__________________
Reply With Quote
  #8  
Old 10-01-2019, 12:05 PM
glassparman's Avatar
glassparman glassparman is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2012
Location: Mojave
Posts: 428
iTrader: 5 / 100%
Default

GETAC - many in use with the military for field operations
__________________
"There is no greater feel than to be in control of 56 tons of steel and watching that 105mm round go down range and blow something up."
Reply With Quote
  #9  
Old 10-01-2019, 12:20 PM
Bigdog68 Bigdog68 is offline
CGN/CGSSA Contributor - Lifetime
CGN Contributor - Lifetime
 
Join Date: Feb 2016
Location: Bay Area
Posts: 132
iTrader: 3 / 100%
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by ibanezfoo View Post
I haven’t seen any ruggedized laptops that are also able to easily swap out parts because they are typically sealed up pretty well for their IP certifications...

Yes, you can't open up ruggedized laptops without sending to the factory, and you will probably void the ruggedized certs. These are machines that can be shoved into a dishwasher and still work.

In a shop situation any regular laptop would work. If worried about damaging a machine, just buy the cheapest available. Then if it breaks, it will cost just a few hundred to replace, instead of a multiple thousands. You can always back it up over WiFI, so no data lost.
Reply With Quote
  #10  
Old 10-02-2019, 9:18 AM
Romeo_alpha01's Avatar
Romeo_alpha01 Romeo_alpha01 is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2017
Location: Fairfield, CA
Posts: 1,117
iTrader: 27 / 100%
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by glassparman View Post
GETAC - many in use with the military for field operations
After researching the GETAC, that looks really comparable, although it seems I would have to deal with a third party for any sort of warranty work. Panasonic seems more accessible. That V110 and X500 looks like the bees knees.
Reply With Quote
  #11  
Old 10-03-2019, 4:56 AM
ibanezfoo's Avatar
ibanezfoo ibanezfoo is offline
Calguns Addict
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: Wimberley, TX
Posts: 7,079
iTrader: 2 / 100%
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Romeo_alpha01 View Post
After researching the GETAC, that looks really comparable, although it seems I would have to deal with a third party for any sort of warranty work. Panasonic seems more accessible. That V110 and X500 looks like the bees knees.
For $4000 those are garbage specs on that X500... Those are specs of a $500 normal laptop.
__________________
"A rational mind does not work under compulsion; it does not subordinate its grasp of reality to anyone’s orders, directives, or controls; it does not sacrifice its knowledge, its view of the truth, to anyone’s opinions, threats, wishes, plans, or “welfare.” Such a mind may be hampered by others, it may be silenced, proscribed, imprisoned, or destroyed; it cannot be forced; a gun is not an argument."
Reply With Quote
  #12  
Old 10-03-2019, 5:04 AM
ldsnet ldsnet is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: San Diego, CA
Posts: 1,090
iTrader: 1 / 100%
Default

We have both at work (field environment), of the two, I would get the Toughbook; just for the availability of replacement parts.

I would hate to use one as my regular laptop, large, heavy, poor screens and difficult to connect accessories (the doors and plugs protect the machine, but make connections a real pain. Even plugging in a usb thumbdrive can be a challenge)
Reply With Quote
  #13  
Old 10-03-2019, 7:07 AM
ibanezfoo's Avatar
ibanezfoo ibanezfoo is offline
Calguns Addict
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: Wimberley, TX
Posts: 7,079
iTrader: 2 / 100%
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by ldsnet View Post
We have both at work (field environment), of the two, I would get the Toughbook; just for the availability of replacement parts.

I would hate to use one as my regular laptop, large, heavy, poor screens and difficult to connect accessories (the doors and plugs protect the machine, but make connections a real pain. Even plugging in a usb thumbdrive can be a challenge)
Thats actually a good point about the USB. I've had to take some thumb drives out of their cases, leaving only the plug and board so they'd fit in there for our guys to get critical data off of.
__________________
"A rational mind does not work under compulsion; it does not subordinate its grasp of reality to anyone’s orders, directives, or controls; it does not sacrifice its knowledge, its view of the truth, to anyone’s opinions, threats, wishes, plans, or “welfare.” Such a mind may be hampered by others, it may be silenced, proscribed, imprisoned, or destroyed; it cannot be forced; a gun is not an argument."
Reply With Quote
  #14  
Old 10-05-2019, 1:29 PM
shotcaller6's Avatar
shotcaller6 shotcaller6 is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: 37°44'16.40" N 121°25'53.28" W aka Tracy, CA. 95376
Posts: 673
iTrader: 88 / 100%
Default Panasonic Toughbook CF-31

Quote:
Originally Posted by Romeo_alpha01 View Post
Well after doing more research, I think the CF-31 is going to be my choice. I really cant find much info on the GD8200, and if I choose to upgrade the CF-31, I still have plenty of options.
The CF-31 is a good choice and contrary to opinions that you can't open them up and work on them, yes you can. I have been inside my CF-19 and CF-31.

Since you are thinking of getting a CF-31 here is a link to the service manual that you can download and check out.

https://elektrotanya.com/panasonic_c.../download.html


I have spare caddy's for mine with Win 7 Pro on one and Linux Mint 19 Tina on the other. I also have a CF-52 that I use for testing with Linux before updating the other machines. The CF-31 is a very stout machine.
Reply With Quote
  #15  
Old 11-19-2019, 6:20 AM
Romeo_alpha01's Avatar
Romeo_alpha01 Romeo_alpha01 is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2017
Location: Fairfield, CA
Posts: 1,117
iTrader: 27 / 100%
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by shotcaller6 View Post
The CF-31 is a good choice and contrary to opinions that you can't open them up and work on them, yes you can. I have been inside my CF-19 and CF-31.

Since you are thinking of getting a CF-31 here is a link to the service manual that you can download and check out.

https://elektrotanya.com/panasonic_c.../download.html


I have spare caddy's for mine with Win 7 Pro on one and Linux Mint 19 Tina on the other. I also have a CF-52 that I use for testing with Linux before updating the other machines. The CF-31 is a very stout machine.
Well I finally bit the bullet and bought a CF-31. Look forward to tinkering with it.

I'm exploring the idea of going to Linux once Win 7 is no longer supported in the coming year. I'm sure this is a separate discussion altogether, but how was the transition and what was involved in installing it?
__________________
Reply With Quote
  #16  
Old 11-19-2019, 7:06 AM
Dragunov's Avatar
Dragunov Dragunov is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2008
Location: TEXAS and FREEDOM!!
Posts: 1,544
iTrader: 0 / 0%
Default

Linux (most varieties) is pretty easy to install. I recommend Linux Mint with the Cinnamon desktop, if you're coming from Windows.

Keep in mind, Linux isn't Windows, and you can't think "Windows" when using it, and it does have a learning curve.
Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump



All times are GMT -8. The time now is 3:31 PM.




Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.9
Copyright ©2000 - 2019, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Proudly hosted by GeoVario the Premier 2A host.
Calguns.net, the 'Calguns' name and all associated variants and logos are ® Trademark and © Copyright 2002-2018, Calguns.net an Incorporated Company All Rights Reserved.
Calguns.net and The Calguns Foundation have no affiliation and are in no way related to each other.
All opinions, statements and remarks made by Calguns.net on this web site and elsewhere are solely attributable to Calguns.net.