The Bottom Line
- Strong Performance
- Great Battery Life For Six Cell Battery
- Excellent Range Of Peripheral Ports
- Runs Hot And Loud
- Keyboard Could Use Improving
- Intel Core i5-520M Dual Core Mobile Processor
- 4GB PC3-8500 DDR3 Memory
- 320GB 7200rpm SATA Hard Drive
- 8x DVD+/-RW Dual Layer Burner
- 13.3" WXGA (1366x768) LED Backlit Display With 1.3 Megapixel Webcam
- Intel GMA 4500MHD Integrated Graphics
- Gigabit Ethernet, 802.11a/g/n Wireless, Bluetooth
- Three USB 2.0, eSATA, HDMI, VGA, ExpressCard/54, Fingerprint Scanner, 3-in-1 Card Reader
- 12.4" x 9" x 1" @ 3.2 lbs.
- Windows 7 Professional, Office Starter, Norton Internet Security
Guide Review - Toshiba Portege R700-S1320 13.3-inch Ultraportable Laptop PC
Sep 17 2010 - Toshiba's Portege line of laptops have always been full featured yet extremely compact. The latest R700 series laptops drops the aluminum clad exterior of the previous version for a more traditional looking black clad magnesium alloy. This keeps the weight very low but it feels very sturdy with no noticable flex throughout the chassis.
Rather than using a new ultra-low voltage processor to extend running times, Toshiba has elected to use a standard Intel Core i5-520M dual core laptop processor. This provides it with some outstanding performance in an ultraportable. This combined with the 4GB of DDR3 memory let this system run just about any type of application one can think of.
Unlike many other ultraportables with such small dimensions, the Portege series laptops have always included internal optical drives. The Portege R700 features a tray loading dual layer DVD burner that is a boon for anyone who wants to watch a DVD while on the road. The hard drive sacrifices some storage space by using a 320GB hard drive in favor for a faster 7200rpm desktop spin rate compared to most laptops 5400rpm drives. This is a decent size but at its price it would be nice to see a bit more space.
The Portege R700 comes equipped with an anti-glare coating on its 13.3-inch display unlike many that now use glossy coatings. This is definitely a key feature for those looking to use the laptop outdoors or in certain difficult indoor lighting conditions. Blacks tend to look a bit washed out but colors are bright and vibrant. The graphics are handled by the standard Intel GMA 4500MHD integrated graphics. This is certainly fine for standard graphics work or HD video streaming. It doesn't have any real performance for 3D graphics for even casual PC gaming.
One surprising aspect of the Portege R700 is the battery life. It uses a standard Core i5 processor and a six cell battery pack. One would assume this would yield relatively mediocre battery life. In DVD playback tests, it is able to achieve a very strong four and a half hours before going into standby mode. This is very strong for such a powerful and compact system. Users should expect roughly six hours of more typical usage which is closer to what many ultra-low voltage laptops with much lower performance.
The Portege R700 uses a fairly typical isolated keyboard layout that has been popular with manufacturers but for some reason the keyboard just doesn't work that well compared to many less expensive laptops. The system can also get quite loud due to its cooling fans dealing with such high performance parts. These can be serious issues for anyone considering this as their primary laptop system and not just a travel laptop.