Panasonic’s Thinner, Lighter Toughbook 54 Can Take a Beating

Panasonic’s new 14-inch semi-rugged touch-screen laptop can survive harsh environments and duties.


Panasonic today announced the availability of its new Toughbook 54 laptop, made for work outdoors and other spots where they’re expected to endure extra wear-and-tear damage.

Panasonic claims it is the thinnest (1.2 inches) and lightest (4.2-4.6 pound) 14-inch semi-rugged laptop thus far.

The Toughbook 54 (AKA CF-54) is a spill-resistant, magnesium alloy-clad laptop running Windows 8.1 Pro (with a Windows 7 Professional downgrade option). It is certified MIL-STD-810G (for drops and environmental extremes), IP5x (ingress by physical objects like dust), as well as Energy Star and EPEAT Bronze certified. It’s got neat features that will help it survive semi-rugged use, like inpolice SUVs patrolling Arctic Circle Airbases, or videographers editing after a day in the Sahara.

Panasonic Toughbook 54The system is equipped with a fifth-generation Intel Core i5-5300U processor, up to 16GB of memory, and dual drives. The primary drive is a quick release one, so laptops can be shared or data can be secured away from the system. A 500GB 5,400rpm drive is the base configuration, but that can be replaced by a 128-256GB SSD or 1TB drive. The second, technician-accessible drive bay can be equipped with a 128GB or 256GB SSD. Both drive bays come with integrated heaters for reliable use in cold environments.

Panasonic claims better than all-day battery life, at 11 hours, along with 7 more hours with an optional second battery pack. The battery packs are hot-swappable so you don’t have to power down to keep going. 802.11ac and Bluetooth are standard, while 4G LTE (through AT&T or Verizon) with GPS is an option.

Screen options are numerous: Gloved multi-touch 1,920-by-1,080 (1080p) screens are rated at 1000 nits for outdoor use. The Performance model comes with a 1080p non-touch screen, while the Prime and Light models come with a 1,366-by-786-resolution non-touch screen.

Look for the Panasonic Toughbook 54 this month from authorized Panasonic retailers, starting at $1,499, with a three-year warranty.