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Thursday, December 20, 2012
Toshiba Satellite Z830-10U review
On the face of it, the Toshiba Satellite Z830-10U is identical to the Toshiba Portégé Z830-10P. On closer inspection there are some tiny differences to be found save other than the small 'Satellite' logo at the bottom left-hand edge of the keyboard.
It's only when examining the internal components that the differences start to become clear. The key change is the Toshiba Satellite Z830-10U's marginally more powerful processor, an Intel Core i5-2467M compared to the i3-2367M, with a slightly faster clockspeed of 1.6GHz. There is also 6GB of RAM compared to 4GB.
This equates to better performance - we were very surprised to see how much though. The Satellite scored 25 points more than the Portégé in our WorldBench 6 tests. Though we'd expected a performance gap, we hadn't expected it to be so great.
The additional power sips a little more power from the battery; the MobileMark 2007 metrics showed the Toshiba Satellite Z830-10U lasting 6 hrs and 10 mins. That’s still a creditable score, though.
Having been built using exactly the same chassis as the Portégé, the Satellite shares many of its faults - the flimsy lid and screen being the most significant.
However, it has many of its plus points too – the backlit keyboard is very usable, even if its rectangular keys just look wrong.
There are ports aplenty, including full-sized ethernet, VGA and HDMI, as well as three USB ports, one of which is a USB 3.0 for faster backup to compatible drives. This is certainly something that you'll need to consider with only 128GB capacity afforded by the SSD.
The Toshiba Z830 range is also among the lightest of ultrabooks on sale at the moment, at less than 1.1kg. However, you wouldn't want to carry them around without a decent case for protection – they're just too fragile.
We were also pleased by the quiet operation of both of the Toshiba Z830 ultrabooks.