Toshiba Satellite Pro L830-10G review

Toshiba sets out to prove business laptops don’t have to be expensive, with this £400 Satellite Pro. Mike Jennings takes a look at whether this 13.3in model is able to provide the performance to match the budget price.

Upgrades and optionsToshiba's Satellite Pro L830 family includes four other models if you'd like a little more power, although the range of components on offer isn't as extensive as you'll find on the average Dell notebook.

The only improved processor available is the i3-2377M, which merely boosts the clock speed to 1.5GHz, and it's only possible to upgrade to a maximum of 4GB. The hard disk can be boosted from 500GB to 750GB, but there's no sign of screen or graphics improvements. At least the top-end L830 model is still cheap, costing 395.

A handful of accessories are available direct from Toshiba. A small port replicator with four USB 2 ports, a 10/100 LAN socket, DVI-I output and audio jacks costs 80, and a larger device with both USB 3 and USB 2 sockets, as well as the ability to drive two displays from its HDMI and DVI-I outputs, costs 108. Extra memory can also be purchased, with a two gigabyte module priced at 17 and a four gigabyte SO-DIMM at 47.

Overall

Toshiba's Satellite Pro isn't without its issues: the suffocating software make for a slow, unresponsive machine, the screen is mediocre, and the Core i3 chip means performance isn't great even with software turned off or uninstalled and that's not to mention the lack of business features, the middling build quality or the unremarkable keyboard and trackpad.

At just 344 exc VAT, though, we can excuse certain faults, and it means the Toshiba is a potential bargain if you're looking for a low-end laptop that's light enough to be carried around day-to-day. Just remember to turn off the crapware first.

Verdict

The Satellite Pro L830-10G doesn’t have much going for it aside from its extremely low £344 exc VAT price: average build quality, screen and ergonomics combined with a low-end processor and software that makes Windows 7 feel more sluggish and unresponsive than it has any right to be. The low price, though, makes it a reasonable bargain for those after a small business laptop on a budget.

OS: Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit PROCESSOR: 1.4GHz Intel Core i3-2367M RAM: 2GB DDR3 STORAGE: 500GB HDD SCREEN: 13.3 in 1,366 x 768 CONNECTIVITY: 802.11n WiFi, Gigabit Ethernet, Bluetooth 4.0 PORTS: 2 x USB 3, 1 x USB 2, HDMI, D-SUB, SD card reader, 2 x audio OPTICAL DRIVE: DVD writer DIMENSIONS: 329 x 221 x 27mm (WxDxH) WEIGHT: 1.8kg/2kg WARRANTY: 1yr RTB warranty

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