Toshiba Satellite P845t-101 review
The Toshiba Satellite P845t-101 takes everything we loved about the Asus VivoBook S200 and adds an extra dose of raw processing power to the mix. It has a third-generation Intel Core i5-3317U processor running at 1.7GHz, but its Turbo Boost technology can increase this clock-speed to 2.6GHz when it’s within certain thermal limits. It scored 43 overall in our multimedia benchmarks, putting it just three points behind the more powerful Core i7-based Asus Taichi. This makes it plenty fast enough for everyday applications as well as more demanding programs that benefit from multiple cores.
The Core i5’s built-in Intel HD Graphics 4000 GPU provides the visuals, but this laptop performed better than most in our Dirt Showdown benchmark, scoring 19fps at 720p with graphics options set to High and 4x anti-aliasing enabled. This is a much better score than we normally see on other laptops with similar integrated chips, and we only had to lower the settings to Medium in order to achieve a more playable 30fps.
The real highlight of the P845t-101 is its 14in 10-point touchscreen. It’s very responsive, making it a real joy to use regardless of whether you’re browsing the web, scrolling through the Windows Store or zooming in and out of Google Maps. The only slight worry we had was how much it wobbles when we’re tapping icons or using the onscreen keyboard, but it has just enough weight to prevent it rocking on the table if you jab the screen particularly hard.
Of course, the one downside to having a touchscreen is dealing with the fingerprints, but thanks to its glossy finish we found they weren’t very noticeable unless the screen was off or particularly dark. In fact, we had more issues with reflections than fingerprints during day-to-day use, but one of the advantages of having a glossy display is really bright and vivid colours, and it certainly made our solid-colour test images extremely vibrant.
Its full-size Chiclet-style keyboard was very comfortable to type on as well. The well-spaced keys had plenty of bounce and tactile feedback, and a white LED backlight illuminates the keyboard in low light conditions. One thing we didn’t like, however, was how many fingerprints the keyboard picked up. It’s a relatively small complaint, but it was quite easy to see where we’d been typing even after quite a short period of time, and they weren’t particularly easy to clean off.
Its smooth all-in-one touchpad didn’t pick up any fingerprints, and it didn’t get in the way while typing, despite not being quite centralised on the wrist rest. Multitouch gestures such as pinch-zooming were accurate, and we could easily use it to display Windows 8’s Charms Bar and switch between windows. Clicking icons and folder links sometimes sent our cursor jolting upwards due to the buttons being incorporated into the rest of the touchpad, but overall it wasn’t too much of a nuisance.
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