Official Laptops Review Thread

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buwish

Judicious
Moderator
-Brand:Dell
-Model:XPS 12
-Bought From/Price:Dell Online for $1400
-OS:Windows 8 Pro
-CPU:Intel Core i7 3517U (1.9GHz or 3Ghz Turbo)
-GPU:Intel HD Graphics 4000
-Resolution:1920x1080
-RAM:8GB @ 1600Mhz
-Usage (Gaming, Internet, Office Apps, etc…):Mainly Office Apps, Internet, Work
-Real World Battery Life (in your estimation): About 3 Hours
-Your Rating (out of 10):8.9/10

For most, $1400 is probably a bit much for a 3.5 lbs 12-inch convertible laptop, but I suppose that's the price one pays for being an early adapter. Nor did I want to mess with the RT version of Windows 8, mainly due to worries over compatibility with some older programs I use. It'll probably take sometime before Windows 8 catches on, but having been a beta tester, I couldn't resist getting a touch screen to really see what W8 could do. Based upon my experience with W8 in the beta program, I'll be the first to tell you that it is truly for machines with touchscreen capabilities. Navigating around W8 with a mouse is burdensome if you want the full experience, but in desktop mode the good old fashioned mouse works great. Now, onto the machine itself.

For starters and for those who are unfamiliar with this laptop, it is actually a convertible laptop/tablet, i.e. it turns into a tablet from a laptop and vice-versa. You simply flip the screen and fold down- that's all. There is no delay what so ever. I find that it is solidly built, i.e. the screen is solidly in place when in laptop mode and the screen itself is fairly thick. I don't really haul it around that much, so the weight (3.5lbs) doesn't really bother me. I didn't expect the screen to be very crisp due to its 12 inch size, but at 1920x1080, everything is crystal clear and the colors are vibrant. The touch capabilities are spot on in the sense that there are no delays and it is an overall smooth experience. It does take some time to get used to, but after a few days, it'll feel like second nature. One issue though is that the touch pad is highly sensitive and take some time to get used to as well, so you may want to turn it down in the settings. The chiclet keyboard is great, as the keys are firm and very tactile.

Performance/Spec-wise, a key selling point for me was the 128GB solid state drive (in reality, 104GB). Compared to Windows 7, Windows 8 (and BIOS) and a solid state drive boot in less than 20 seconds. The i7 3517u, even though an ultra-mobile, is rather quick and runs cool (about 35C on a hard, flat surface) thanks to the 22nm lithography of Ivy Bridge. It rates a 7.2 on the WEI, so it's no lightweight. For gaming though, combined with the weak Intel 4000 GPU (a 5.4 on the WEI), I'm not sure if this is the machine for you. The only major downside for those who like to haul their laptops around is the fact that the battery is only good for roughly 3 hours, even on power saver mode. But I suppose that is the price you pay for added performance.

Here are the full ratings of the WEI:
Processor: Core i7 3517U- 7.2
RAM: 8GB @ 1600Mhz- 7.9
Graphics: Intel 4000- 5.4
Gaming Graphics: 6.4
Primary Hard Disk: 128GB SSD- 8.1

Overall, for my use, i.e. Internet, Office Apps, etc..., I like the XPS 12. Again, keep in mind that it does take some getting used to, as well as Windows 8, but I don't think you'll be disappointed so long as your not playing any hardcore games.
 

amir13499

Honorable
Feb 16, 2013
1
0
10,510
0

 

neodymium

Honorable
Mar 4, 2013
52
0
10,630
0
Sony Vaio FW series

Brand: Sony
Model: VGN-FW351J
Cost: $999.99 @ Best Buy (on sale) in January 2009 (late mid 2008 model)
OS: Windows Vista 64 Home Premium (aka Windows Crap that was put together at the last minute to make lots of profit), Ubuntu 12.04 LTS custom distro (Gnome)
CPU: Intel Core 2 Duo T6400 @ 2.00 Ghz
GPU: Intel G45 w/ Intel GMA 4500mHD
Resolution: 1600x900 (900p)
Ram: 4 gb
Usage: All the things! (except gaming, it sucks at that)
Real World Battery Life: 3 years ago=2hrs, 2 years ago=1hr 45min, 1 year ago=1hr, today=20min
Rating: 8 of 10

This laptop has served me well for the 4 years I have owned it, and I don't expect to be writing an obituary amendment to this review anytime soon, if not at all. It still looks aesthetically pleasing compared to some of today's laptops and has a magnesium alloy lid:



Note that my keys are white, not black like in the sample pic, because it was the model bought in stores and not from sony directly
(Borrowed from wikipedia, too lazy to take my own pic)
The battery life has progressively gotten worse, but what do you expect from a five year old lithium ion battery anyway? My only complaint about this laptop is that the Intel GMA is too !&@\^? slow. It is so slow, that when I play games, my cpu has to wait for the graphics card to catch up. It doesn't even deserve to be called a graphics card in the first place! However, the Blu-ray and the existence of a modem makes up for that fault, but I am still relatively unsatisfied.
 

Renzel Hirt

Honorable
May 5, 2013
36
0
10,530
0
hi there im new here,,... i cannot find samsung brand ,,,thread so sad...




-Brand: SAMSUNG
-Model: SF-410
-Bought From/Price: i dunno what the price in dollars but i bought it on ph peso about ( 50.000 )
-OS: WINDOWS 7 64BIT / UBUNTU 12.04
-CPU: INTEL CORE I5 460 M (FIRST GEN HOW SAD )
-GPU: INTEL HD3000 / NVIDIA GEFORCE 310M 1 GB (VIA OPTIMUS
-Resolution: 1366X768 HD LED
-RAM: 4 GB DDR3
-Usage (Gaming, Internet, Office Apps, etc…): DAILY MID-GAMING , INTERNET , SCHOOL (PROGRAMMING) .MOVIES
-Real World Battery Life (in your estimation): ON SAMSUNG OPTIMIZE I GET -3 HRS AND 30 MINS
POWER SAVER 3 HRS 10MINS HIGH PERFORMANCE 2HRS
-Your Rating (out of 10): 8 OF 10






this laptop is my first ..... gear on mid- gaming very thankful i brought an i5 even do its 1st version .. so far this laptop serves me well when im gaming....nvidia optimus... helps me a lot!!! ... give a little boost maintaning league of legends in 60 fps all medium settings,.....also battery rocks!!.. only downside,,, is this not capable of ssd drives (dunno) and also video card if they equip this with an gtx im...so happy with that.....recovery.....sucks,... i replace 2 hdd last 2012... 2 dead hdd in one year....

so far..... im happy with it...

please let me now if i can equiped this with an SSD DRIVE...
 

Christopher Benson

Honorable
Jun 25, 2013
1
0
10,510
0
-Brand: SAMSUNG
-Model: CHROMEBOOK
-Bought From/Price: AMAZON/$249
-OS: CHROME
-CPU:
-GPU:
-Resolution: 1366 x 768 pixels (good for the 11.6in screen)
-RAM: 2GB memory and 100GB of free Cloud Drive storage for 2 years
-Usage (Gaming, Internet, Office Apps, etc…): Everything internet and cloud related
-Real World Battery Life (in your estimation): 6-7 hours
-Your Rating (out of 10): 9 (for what most people use their laptops for)

For most of our everyday laptop uses, the Samsung Chromebook gives you the best bang for your buck. At $249 brand new, you can't ask for a better price. It's thin, lightweight, very fast and has a very long battery life. It's ideal for anybody who spends all their time on their laptop on the internet, personal or business. It's not ideal for people who do a lot off-line as it doesn't run off a traditional OS, but rather the internet and a Chrome browser...which is why it functions so highly. It's not cluttered with apps and programs that are growing obsolete. For more information, check out my Squidoo lens for the Samsung Chromebook. http://www.squidoo.com/workshop/why-every-internet-user-needs-a-chromebook
 

alina002

Honorable
Sep 8, 2013
1
0
10,510
0
Toshiba Satellite S50t-A-118
Key Features: 15.6-inch 1366x786 touchscreen display; 2.6kg; Intel i7 4700MQ 2.4GHZ Quad Core CPU; 6GB RAM; 1TB 5,400rpm Hard Drive; GeForce GT740M Graphics
Manufacturer: Toshiba

Quick Glance
Display 16.6
Resolution 1366 x 768
Processor Intel Core i7-4700MQ
Processor Speed Standard 2.4
Memory (RAM) 6
Hard Disk Drive (HDD) 1000
Type Other Laptop
Processor, Memory & Storage
Processor Intel Core i7-4700MQ
Processor Speed Standard 2.4
Memory (RAM) 6
Hard Disk Drive (HDD) 1000
Hard Disk Drive Speed 5400
DVD Optical Drive Yes
Graphics & Sound
3D NVIDIA GeForce GT 740M
Display 16.6
Resolution 1366 x 768
Communication
Ethernet Gigabit Ethernet LAN 10BASE-T/100BASE-TX/1000BASE-T
Wi-Fi 802.11b/g/n (up to 150Mbps)
Bluetooth Yes
Webcam Yes
Connectivity
HDMI Yes
Audio Connections Headphone-out
Data
USB 2.0 1
USB 3.0 2
Card Reader 1
Software
Operating System Other OS
Physical Specifications
Weight (With Battery) 2.6
Dimensions Width 377.5
Depth 244
Height 30.3
Other
Type Other Laptop
Battery life 2.5
Battery lithium-ion (prismatic), 4 cell
Warranty (Years & Type) 1 year European Carry-in incl. local Pick-up & Return in the UK & Ireland.
Toshiba Satellite S50t-A-118 – Screen Quality
So where are the specifications different? The most obvious point is the screen, where the S50t's 15.6-inch screen has a 1366x768 resolution compared to the £1,000 Satellite’s 1920x1080. Unfortunately the higher resolution screen wasn’t a great selling point in the pricier model, and this has the same problems only a lot more blocky.

Toshiba Satellite S50t-A-118

The brightness is okay, but it’s not sharp at all, with the blurry meshy quality you get in cheaper touchscreens making things even less sharp, especially text. The colours are a little washed out too, though it’s far from being the worst offender we’ve seen coming through our doors.

On the bright side, touch functions mostly work well, and a surprisingly positive knock on effect from the lower resolution is that things become that bit easier to touch in desktop mode. It feels slightly less responsive than the P50t, but there’s not a great deal in it.
Best Laptops
 

akinola taiwo

Honorable
Nov 11, 2013
10
0
10,510
0
ASUS Republic of Gamers G75VW-AS71 17.3-Inch Gaming Laptop

So I noticed some weak reviews for this product and am quite disgusted. I bought this unit from Best Buy and have so far been impressed. I typically am a desktop user, in fact, I normally custom build my own rigs. I was in the market for a laptop, and didn't want to frustrate myself with custom building one so I shopped around a lot. For the price, it will be difficult to beat this machine. The only laptops that will come close (Dell XPS, AlienWare, and MSI) would all likely cost and extra $500-$1000. Every game I have played so far (Portal 2, Skyrim, etc) have ran on ultra settings with extremely great frame rates. Now for the Pros and cons:

Pros: Great heat displacement, it has two large exhaust ports on the backside of the machine. This keeps the heat off of the bottom and allows for "lap-top" computing. Processing speed is amazing. Cost is low, but shop around, I got it at Bust Buy for $200 cheaper (though the build is not exact to this model make your own decisions as to what you need). Back-lit key board is extremely neat. Large vibrant HD screen. Its not loaded down with a bunch of bloatware and demos. GTX 660M is a great GPU for most all (with the exception of the have to have the most expensive and overkill, melt your face GPU) users. Additional port for secondary HDD. Easy access for upgrades to HDD an memory. Ivy Bridge! This thing has blistering fast multi-app processing power!

Cons (and the reason for 4 stars): The biggest drawback for me is the 1TB HDD, as it is slow (5400 RPM). For this reason alone Windows Experience Index rated it a 5.9. All other ratings were mid to upper 7's. Shame on you Asus. For $130 buy a 128GB SSD from Amazon and up your computing potential. Just use the 1TB as a slave. It is bulky, but to be expected as it is a gaming lappy. Good luck trying to find a case that fits it.Lastly the power brick is enormous and the battery is lucky to give you 1.5 hrs unplugged. Again, this is a gaming laptop so this is to be expected.

PRODUCT SPECIFICATION
Screen Size 17.3 inches
Max Screen Resolution 1920*1080 pixels
Processor 2.4 GHz Core i7-3630QM
RAM 8 GB DDR3
Hard Drive 750 GB
Graphics Coprocessor Nvidia GTX 660M 2G GDDR5
Wireless Type 802.11bgn
Number of USB 3.0 Ports 4
Average Battery Life (in hours) 2 hours
Expand
Other Technical Details
Brand Name Asus
Series G75VW
Item model number G75VW-AH71
Hardware Platform PC
Operating System Windows 8
Item Weight 8.7 pounds
Item Dimensions L x W x H 16.30 x 0.90 x 12.60 inches
Processor Brand Intel
Processor Count 1
Computer Memory Type DDR3 SDRAM
Hard Drive Interface Serial ATA
Hard Drive Rotational Speed 7200 RPM
Optical Drive Type DL DVD±RW/CD-RW
Power Source Battery
Batteries: 1 Lithium ion batteries required. (included)

 

Brynn

Honorable
Jan 23, 2013
30
0
10,530
0
-Brand: Samsung
-Model: ATIV Book 7
-OS: Win8.1 (came with 8)
-CPU: i5
-GPU: Radeon 8500M HD
-Resolution: 1920x1080, 13.3"
-RAM: 4GB
-Usage (Gaming, Internet, Office Apps, etc…): Work/personal
-Real World Battery Life (in your estimation): 6-7h (wifi) / 9-10h (no wifi)
-Your Rating (out of 10): 9

I would give it a 10 if it wasn't for the stupid Catalyst Center crashing all the time and f*cking up my screen brightness controls. This seems to have been a common problem for years, I have read similar complaints from 2011 on all kinds of laptops with Radeon cards. Maybe it's time AMD did something about it???

However it's not a dealbraker. In all other respects the laptop is great.
+ Battery: It lasts for ages. With wifi on, installing and uninstalling games, updating to Win8.1 over wifi etc. I couldn't kill it in 5 hours. With normal usage (wifi/videos) it lasts for over 6h. Without wifi it lasts for 9-10h easily. Takes about 2.5h to charge (while being used).
+ Keyboard/touchpad: best I've ever tried. The keys are so light, it feels like I'm typing on clouds! Also very nice in size, comfy, well placed, the secondary controls (sound, keyboard backlight, etc.) are easy to find and use.
+ Responsive touchscreen.
+ Super easy to carry around: it's only 1.5kg and is as large as an A4/letter sheet.
+ Crystal clear display: I was surprised how nice the display is, it's sharp as a retina display and you can decrease font size on menus etc to the minimum you can still see everything clearly due to the nice resolution.
+ Workmanship: overall it's a very well made laptop, with a sturdy, elegant case. I like that it doesn't look overly fancy or ostentatious, but you can tell it's not your average plastic notebook that bends everywhere. Clean, elegant desing. Comes in two colours: metal ash black (dark blueish metal) and silver metal.
+ Decent speakers.
+ Extremely silent due to SSD, you can't hear anything even if you listen closely.
+ Excellent thermal system: even after 5-6h usage you can barely detect any heating on the bottom.
- What I mentioned above: the screen brightness controls stop working when you switch between power plans (high performance to balanced, for example). There appears to be no solution for this problem yet. It's not really Samsung's fault though, you might run into this problem with any other laptop with a Radeon card.
 

bllizzard91

Honorable
Jan 19, 2014
1
0
10,510
0
-Brand: MSI
-Model: GT-70 2OD
-Bought From/Price: Newegg Price $2399
-OS: Windows 8
-CPU: Intel Core i7 4700MQ (2.40GHz or 3.4 GHz Turbo)
-GPU: Intel HD Graphics 4600 and Nvidia GeForce GTX 780M 4GB DDR5
-Resolution: 1920x1080
-RAM: 24GB @ 1600Mhz
-HDD: 2x128GB SSDs + 1 TB HDD
-ROM: BD Burner
-Usage (Gaming, Internet, Office Apps, etc…): Gaming, Photo and Video Editing, Coding and Running Memory hogging apps
-Real World Battery Life (in your estimation): About 2 Hours of gaming, On battery saver mode ~ 4 hours
-Your Rating (out of 10): 10/10
REF http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16834152396
http://www.msi.com/product/nb/GT70-2OD.html#overview

Amazing laptop, been using it a lot. Only beef you would have with it would be the weight...it is heavy! but i love it. I got a Targus Demolition Pack(http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=03V-005H-00075) which is big enough to carry my laptop and Cooling Pad(http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16834982203), and then leave some room for my books and bicycle ulock. I bike to college so this huge thing adds to my workout which is awesome for me. The audio quality will blow your mind, speakers are really loud and crystal clear quality. Needless to say the graphics card is awesome, playing Battlefield 4 on Ultra Settings @70FPS. The keyboard is full with numpad, like a regular keyboard which is one of my requirements, since i didnt want a small laptop keyboard. The customisable backlight on keyboard is nifty. The touchpad is nice and responsive. There is a small touchpad disable button for disabling the touchpad when u type which is really helpful. The touchpad also supports multi-touch pinch to zoom stuff, two finger scroll, etc which is helpful when i read ebooks. The laptop boots up really fast cause of the SSDs. Had to remove a few bloatware apps from MSI but the hybrid power app is really nice and i kept it. The only down thing is that the hand rests next to the keyboard/touchpad are glossy so they might get sweaty and dirty so gotta keep it dry and clean. All in all really nice laptop if you can get it.
 

hemanigill

Reputable
Feb 19, 2014
3
0
4,520
2
-Brand: HP laptop
-Model: HP Laptop 15-G004AU
-Bought From/Price: Rs.24999 from http://www.lotuselectronics.com/Product-Laptops-86
-OS: windows 8.1
-Processor:APU Dual Core
-GPU: AMD Radeon HD 8210
-Resolution:1366X768 pixel
-RAM:2 GB DDR3 RAM
-Usage (Gaming, Internet, Office Apps, etc…): can be used for for editing, video editing along with business use
-Real World Battery Life (in your estimation): 4hour of
-Your Rating (out of 10): 7 out of 10

other than the other mentioned above bullet point my laptop also excel in other features also that includes:

  • HP True Vision HD Webcam as the web camera
    Touch pad with Multi-touch Gesture Support as a pointer device
    comes with a security "Kensington Lock Slot" lock port
    with a perfect screen size of 15.6 inch and has HD Bright View LED Backlit Display as its screen type
    Has 64 bit system and OS architecture and has an 8 GB expandable memory.
other than the above mentioned technical specification the laptop has a awesome operating speed and just second to start with quick start and get shutdown in 2 second and provides me a perfect experience whatever program i am using

 

Claymoresama

Honorable
May 3, 2013
173
0
10,680
0
-Brand: Sony Vaio E Series
-Model: SVE14125CXB
-Bought From/Price: 500
-OS: Windows 8
-CPU: i5-3210m 2.5ghz & turbo: 3.2ghz
-GPU: Intel HD 4000
-Resolution: 1366x768
-RAM: 4gb
-Usage (Gaming, Internet, Office Apps, etc…): Light gaming, mostly school
-Real World Battery Life (in your estimation): 4, maybe 5 hours if doing light tasks on low brightness
-Your Rating (out of 10): 0

What can I say about this computer. Well for starters it is my reasoning for never EVER purchasing a Sony Vaio computer ever again. I purchased this computer in April of 2013 and it hasn't worked properly at all. Right out of the box, when I came home from Frys I noticed some keys felt funny, but by the time I started noticing keys falling off it was past the return time. So first keys were falling off so I had Sony send a representative out to replace it. Then after having the machine for maybe 2 months it started having this odd issue where my disk usage would jump to 100% randomly even if nothing was open or running in the background. So it gradually grew worse and worse as the days progressed and eventually it crippled my laptop to the point where opening a word file was hard to do. Finally I spend probably close to 10 hours on the phone with tech support trying to resolve this. Now let's fast forward to today, March 1, 2014. I have sent my computer to Sony 4 TIMES to receive a repair. Pretty much every time I sent it in they just wiped the hdd and sent it back. I am battling Sony over receiving a refund because I have been royally ripped off. As a college student it is very irritating to have to be stuck with a desktop when I'm always out and about. My word to anyone looking at a Sony computer is this.... DON"T BUY IT. Sony is a terrible computer company and I would consider this purchase the worst mistake I have ever made in my entire life. I don't know if I was cruel to puppies in another life to deserve this sort of punishment, but I'll let you know that I didn't even scratch the surface of all the "fun" times I've had dealing with Sony.
 

Herobrine

Honorable
Nov 2, 2013
114
0
10,710
18
LOL Business laptop for gaming, internet and watching HD movies.
-Brand:Lenovo
-Model:B590
-Bought From/Price:Lenovo Exclusive Store ~700$
-OS: Originally FreeDOS now Windows 8.1 Pro x64
-CPU:Intel Core i5 3230M
-GPU:nVidia GT 720M
-Resolution:1366x768 @60Hz
-RAM:8Gb 1600Mhz DDR3 (2x4Gb Dual-Channel)
-Usage:Gaming, Internet, Movies
-Real World Battery Life: Around 2-3 Hours browsing Internet or watching movies or 30 min playing games
-Your Rating (out of 10):For gaming 5 For everything else 9 (except UHD video editing might take ages)

It's very good laptop. But the "s" key won't work unless pressed harder. For gaming it's surprisingly good (if you keep AA off on newer games c: ) On League of Legends @ nearly max settings (shadows @ low and AA off) it gets solid 60FPS, TES V: Skyrim @ medium-high gives around 30FPS outside and 60FPS inside. Nope Battlefield 4 won't work on settings greater than medium :D. For internet it's great but nVidia's beta drivers are quite unstable (they're beta so...). Fast Wi-Fi, fast 1Gbit Ethernet, Wi-Di always crashes :( , good Bluetooth but just 2 USB 3.0 and 2 USB 2.0 ports and 1 DVD+R DL. Well basically it's one very good laptop for the money. RAM extendable up to 16Gb. But GPU can get very hot (90°C) without external fan. Just the monitor lacks vivid colors and the keyboard is kind of slow or not very responsive it's good laptop. :D
 

cpsuperprosecrets

Honorable
Dec 16, 2013
71
0
10,640
4
Brand: Lenovo
Model:U410 Touch
Bought from/ Price: Amazon £699
OS: Windows 8
CPU: Intel Core i7 3517U @2.00GHZ
GPU: Intel HD 4000/ Geforce 710M
Resolution: 1366 by 768
RAM 4GB
Usage: Schoolwork, gaming and internet use
Real World Battery Life: 4-5 Hours
Your Rating: 9 out of 10. The Wireless card is a bit disappointing, and keeps cool even when playing WarThunder
 

Calaphos

Reputable
Apr 3, 2014
16
0
4,520
1
-Brand: Lenovo
-Model: Thinkpad t61
-Bought From/Price: originally 200$
-OS: windows 7 porfessional (originally vista)
-CPU: Intel T7300 (2*2hgz)
-GPU: Nvidia Nvs 140m
-Resolution: 1280*800
-RAM: 4gb (originally 2 gb)
-Usage (Gaming, Internet, Office Apps, etc…): some light gaming, office, web surfing)
-Real World Battery Life (in your estimation): 2h (9 cell battery)
-Your Rating (out of 10): 7

The laptop is now arround 7 years old and im a bit surprised that it still works really well with borwsing / office.
Its solind like a brick - and as heavy as one. You wont find any flexing on the base unit adn the keyboard is one of the ebst ones i ever had. BUt the battery life is quite bad, despite the 90 wh battery (which adds to the wheight quite signifincantly). I think the fan is also breaking, it started making weared noises some weaks ago, so im getting a replacement. BUt if your consider that the laptop is now arround 7 years old and its still perfectly usable for office and still able to run light games i could really recommend it to someone who needs an reliable notebook for work, just make sure you can charge it where you use it, the power usage is quite high. I think there are several on ebay for arround 200 $...
 

Haleemakhan42

Reputable
Mar 28, 2014
3
0
4,510
0
I’m planning to go with Lenovo B50 or G50. Both laptops packed with 4th generation processors. I also heard these laptops will come with Core i7 processor and Nvidia GeForce 820M Graphic. Both laptops will way cheaper than other laptops, starring from $399 only.

Lenovo B50 Specification
15-inch 1366×768 Pixel Resolution Touchscreen Display
4th-Generation Core i7 Processor/AMD A8 Processor with integrated Graphics
Nividia GeForce 820M Graphics Chip/AMD Radeon R5 M230
1TB of HDD or Hybrid SSD
Built-in Fingerprint scanner
Dolby Advanced Audio V2
2 USB 3.0 ports, 1 USB 2.0 Port
HDMI Slot
Ethernet Port, Audio Jack
4-in-one Card Reader
 

Bacon_Party

Reputable
May 9, 2014
16
0
4,510
0
-Brand: Toshiba
-Model: Satellite L55-A5299
-Bought From/Price: $539
-OS: Windows 8.1
-CPU: Intel Core i7-4700MQ @ 2.4GHz
-GPU: Intel HD Graphics 4600
-Resolution: 1366x768
-RAM: 8GB
-Usage (Gaming, Internet, Office Apps, etc…): Multimedia (Light gaming, movie/tv watching, minor photo/video editing)
-Real World Battery Life (in your estimation): 5 hours
-Your Rating (out of 10): 7/10

To preface this, I am an avid programmer and for me the keyboard is paramount in a system, and I trust Toshiba products and have never encountered and hardware issues with them, until now.

Starting off with the good, I would say in terms of performance the Toshiba Satellite L55-A5299 shines, with its' 4th generation core i7 and 8GB of ram for such a low price. It handled anything I threw at it with ease and never suffered a single second of lag and never hesitated to quickly open programs. It also had an impressive array of ports, one USB 2.0, two USB 3.0, a VGA out, an HDMI out, an SD card reader (interestingly enough placed on the front of the system), a DVD drive, and an audio and mic out (not sure why this isn't commonplace anymore but those combo jacks are just stupid). It was clad in a glossy silver plastic on the top and armrests with black glossy plastic surrounding the matte chiclet keyboard and screen, a classic PC look that I enjoy, and the silver coloration helps deter from fingerprints. The cooling is also very effective as the fan rarely activates, on an already quiet computer and the right side of the keyboard only ever feels slightly warm.

That's it for the good, now on to the bad. First I'll start with my biggest complaint, the keyboard. There's no sugarcoating it, it just sucks, and if I had the chance to use it before I bought it, I never would have. The keys have absolutely zero travel and you have to hit them dead on to get any kind of response, which leads to many missed strokes and having to essentially type things twice. The touchpad took a little getting used to, it's roomy, but at the same time your finger doesn't glide and moving the cursor to the other side of the screen can't be accomplished with one swipe. This can be remedied by just breaking the touchpad in, as it becomes much smoother after a few hours use and tweaking the settings a bit, but I don't think you should have to. The sound quality and screen is average, but at that price point I wasn't expecting any more. All in all, the specs are impressive, but as I learned you get what you pay for, and where the computer shines in power it lacks in usability, and to be fair this was the first mid-range laptop I purchased from Toshiba, all others I've purchased have been high end.
 

TonyL2591

Reputable
Jul 10, 2014
1
0
4,510
0
Thanks for your review on this laptop. I was look at purchasing one. Can you tell me where you bought it for $539? Also, are you concerned at all about it not having a removable batter?

Thanks!




 

Spac3nerd

Distinguished
Oct 20, 2011
41
0
18,540
4
-Brand: Dell
-Model: Precision M4700
-Bought From/Price: From Dell outlet for $1050 in August 2013
-OS: Windows 7 Pro stock, replaced with Fedora 18 64-bit with KDE immediately after purchase.
-CPU: Intel i7 3740QM
-GPU: AMD FirePro M4000 with 1GB GDDR5
-Resolution: 1920 x 1080
-RAM: 4GB(2xGB) stock, upgraded to 12GB(2x4GB, 2x2GB(stock mem))
-Usage (Gaming, Internet, Office Apps, etc…): Software development and a few games.
-Real World Battery Life (in your estimation): 2 - 3 hours
-Your Rating (out of 10): 8.5

I will divide this review into several sections. A few things to note before starting. The chassis and general shape of the laptop is identical to the Precision M4600 to the M4800 with similarities to the M4500. With that in mind, any notes I make about build quality and finish should be applicable to the M4600-M4800.
Before I begin, I would like to state why I purchased this machine and what my use case it.
I purchased this machine to be used for work(software developer) and to also be my desktop replacement. I typically run Fedora with KDE on it while I work, but I also keep a harddrive with Windows 7 for the times I need to run other applications or occasionally play a game.
What drew me to this laptop was the performance and features I got for the price I paid. Weight and convenience were not big factors, although I do haul it around in college, it is not too cumbersome.
Note that I bought this machine from Dell's outlet, it was a refurbished laptop(hence the lower price), but warranty support was the same as if I bought it new.

Build quality(8/10):
I would rate the build quality as being good. There are a few minor defects with the product, but overall it is quite well built and thought out. The display hinge has a bit of play in it, but nothing too serious. I only use the point stick, and the finish wore off of the point stick buttons. I would almost say that the trackpad buttons are of a higher quality than the point stick ones.
The palm rests are coated with some sort of rubber, which are very comfortable, but I suspect that it will wear down with time. The main frame is composed of a metal of some sort, as is the top of the lid, but the top of the lid is prone to dents.
Those are my only minor complaints about the build quality of this machine, everything else on it is on par to what you would expect from a workstation, in that parts fit together well and there is no significant flex on the chassis.


Display(8/10):
Not much to say here besides that the display is your slightly better than average 1080 display. I would have preferred it to have a 16:10 display, as the laptop chassis can accommodate it and the extra vertical space would have been nice.

External ports(10/10):
two USB 3.0 ports, Three USB 2.0 ports(one is a USB/eSATA combo)
A 54mm ExpressCard slot
A 10 in 1 card reader
One DisplayPort
One HDMI port
One VGA out
One RJ-45
One 1394 port(M4800 doesn't have this I believe)
One eSATA(USB/eSATA combo)
3.5mm audio out and microphone in
A docking port

This laptop has everything covered. Every mobile workstation should have these connectivity options. There are other self-proclaimed workstations that have missing features. The only negative thing to say is that not all USB ports are USB 3.0, but that has been rectified in the M4800.

Internal slots and upgrade-ability(9/10):
The back cover is easily removed with two screws, and everything you need is easily accessible. There are 4 RAM slots, two under the back cover and two under the keyboard.
Removing the screws that hold the harddrive caddy in place can make harddrive replacement fairly quick, but you have to remove the battery in order to release the latch, an external release would have been great.
You have three options for storage devices. The main harddrive slot, the mSATA slot and the optical drive which can be replaced by a hard-drive caddy. So in terms of storage options, the user has quite a few choices.

Video card(8/10):
This has to be the biggest complaint about the M4700, which is why it gets its own section. Switch-able graphics are not supported for the AMD FirePro. The user is stuck to using the discrete video adapter. Supposedly, removing the AMD card from its slot may force a boot with the Intel adapter, but this is not only inconvenient, but may also void warranty.
Aside from that, the AMD card performs very well, in terms of power it should surpass the more expensive options from Nvidia. My development work relies more on the processor than the video card.
I only play a couple of games, mainly M&B Warband and ARMA II, and the laptop performs well in those games.

Performance for price(10/10):
I am very pleased with the overall performance of the machine given the price I paid for it. It runs the tasks at work very well. I typically run 8 virtual desktops in Fedora along with one or two virtual machines, and it does so without a snag. There isn't much more to say about performance, it runs my demanding tasks quite well, and I'm pleased.

Keyboard(8/10):
Keyboard quality is good, and it's about as good as it gets for laptop keyboard in terms of feel. It is full-sized, but I would have preferred a better layout over the inclusion of the number pad. There is not spacing between the F-keys and they, along with the entire top row, are not full-sized. Also the control keys are placed in a weird format due to space constraints.
The stock point stick cap is next to useless. If you want a better experience, buy the blue caps for the old Dells, they work much better. Mentioned earlier, the quality of the buttons for the point stick is questionable. I can't say too much about the touchpad since I don't use it, except that certain users will complain that it's too small.

Noise and cooling(10/10):
The laptop manages to stay quiet when idle or doing menial tasks, but even under heavy load it does not heat up too much or cause too much noise. The laptop has a two-fan solution that works very well.

Weight and physical dimensions(not applicable):
The laptop weighs over 6lb, and it comes with a heavy 180Watt power supply. The entire package is heavy, but that is not a problem in my case since it spends most of its life on a desk, or being transported in a bag(which I don't find to be heavy). I didn't give a rating since this aspect of a laptop has to be thought about before purchase. Size and weight of a laptop correlates to its indented use, and is more often than not, a user preference so no rating is given here. Don't complain about a performance oriented-laptop not being light enough, it's not a valid argument.

In conclusion, I've been using this laptop daily for nearly a year. I would recommend it to anyone looking for a powerful workhorse laptop.
 

Gamer2886

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Jul 23, 2014
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-Brand: ASUS
-Model: G56JR
-Bought From/Price: Store in Singapore $1600 Singapore Dollars ( $1200 US )
-OS: Windows 8
-CPU: Intel Core i7 4700HQ
-GPU: NVIDIA GTX 760m
-Resolution: 1920x1080 15.6"
-RAM: 8 but upgraded to 16
-Usage (Gaming, Internet, Office Apps, etc…): Heavy gaming and Internet
-Real World Battery Life (in your estimation): Gaming around 2 hours but for general use 4 or 5
-Your Rating (out of 10): 10

Display - It's 15.6" 1920x1080 display lets me watch movies and even play games on FULL HD. 10/10

CPU - Very good 4th-Gen Intel i7 which should fulfill all those heavy-threaded tasks easily.

GPU - The G56JR comes with a great Nvidia GTX 760M, It's not the best but it will give you good fps when you play on medium to high.

Keyboard - The keyboard is just amazing, it feels comfortable at all times and it's backlit.

Storage - The G56JR comes with a 5400 RPM 1TB hard drive, which is probably the slowest of hard drives. I needed to change it fast, so this is what i did:

I had some money leftover from my initial $1500 budget so i decided to use that $300 dollars i had left over to buy a Samsung 240GB SSD, an external dvd player and a optical drive bay caddy.

I replaced the default HDD with my new SSD, I removed the dvd player to put in the optical drive bay with the default HDD. I still needed a dvd player, though. So i bought an external one incase i ever needed it.

So i end up with 240GB SSD as my new primary drive and 1TB HDD as my secondary ( for storage purposes )
 


Ah, sorry for the late answer. I usually play whatever I'm playing on my main PC, but on the GO.

Guild Wars 2, Payday 2, TERA, Euro Truck Simulator 2, GRID 2, DiRT games, etc...

None of them have an issue playing at 1080p with mid+ detail level keeping up 40+ FPS (vsync off, minor stuttering). A faster LED display would come a LONG LONG way for this notebook.

It's been 2 years since I bought it and man, what a great purchase it has been.

Cheers!
 

Bacon_Party

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May 9, 2014
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I wasn't too concerned with the removable battery, as it seems to be commonplace in the laptop market now, and I purchased it with a special in-store pickup sale from microcenter.

 
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