On its underside, the Satellite L450 provides easy access to the two memory slots and the Realtek 802.11n wireless card. The 250GB Sata hard drive, which ticks along at 5400rpm, is also accessible through a flap of its own. A circular grille allows the laptop fan to draw air in – this is then expelled via the large vent on the left side of the chassis.
Underneath, full access to the memory, hard drive and wireless card
This fan regularly fired up during testing, even when the laptop was idle. Fortunately, it's reasonably quiet and shouldn’t be a cause of irritation. It also seems to do a good job of keeping everything cool, with the trackpad being the only section that got slightly warm after extended periods of use.
In terms of ports and sockets, there are no surprises. HDMI, VGA and three USB ports are joined by Ethernet - but 10/100Mb/s, not Gigabit - audio in/out and a multi-format card reader, while a bog-standard DVD writer sits on the right. There’s no PC Card or ExpressCard slot, but you do get a volume wheel at the front.
No surprises among the port array
Released earlier this yet, the Celeron T3000 CPU that’s charged with powering the Satellite L450 has just 1MB of L2 cache at its disposal. However, it is a dual-core chip, with each core running at 1.8GHz. In PCmark Vantage, it achieved an overall score of 3248. We were also impressed at how the Celeron T3000 fared during general Windows 7 tasks, and even with multiple applications open simultaneously it coped admirably.
PCMark Vantage Results
Longer bars are better
If you want to compare it to laptops we’ve tested with PCmark05, it clocked up an overall score of 3479 and a CPU score of 4310.
Intel = OpenGL fail
No not a Intel video chip again. Oh please no. The moment the users install anything requiring OpenGL they're gonna find they're dead in the water without an oar to paddle with.
Okay I guess Intel is giving them away for nothing or something. Trouble is if you can't run your programs with them what's the point of the laptop cheep even as it is?
Re: Not that cheap.
Yes, but for £30 extra I'd rather have the Toshiba. I've seen how Dell treat their customers when things go wrong.
Not that cheap.
right now Dell are flogging entry level Inspiron 15s with a very similar spec and 4GB of RAM for £350.
A Warning from History?
Bought someone an L350D Toshiba. The 'D' meant it uses an AMD chip, not Intel. More bang for the buck, better overall specification of laptop for similar price.
Toshiba UK have support forums, so before you buy this model, if I were you I would go check there first to see what typical issues you may encounter.
Sturdy laptop, very sold, good keyboard, typical Toshiba traits. However:
1) Certain laptops, AMD or Intel, seem to have very poor ventilation design, so can overheat when playing a game or using other CPU intensive tasks. Not sure if dust is a problem, but it's suggested dust blocks the vents on the forum, although I still think it's an overall bad design after research.
2) These laptops seem to still come generally with Vista. Put XP on, and although there are all the relevant XP drivers on Toshiba's website, some things are strange. The rubbish realtek WLAN adapter is USB unbelievable, not mini-PCI, and has an on/off switch on the front. With WPA1 or 2 PSK it just doesn't connect properly. A basic quick-fix for this (XP remember) is to use WEP (yes, we all know the security issues there.) The network icon does not always show the wireless network is connected, but you can still do everyday internet-tasks fine. It is indeed a very strange one, and I can only put it down to a combination of XP, bad driver design, and the fact the WLAN adapter is USB.
The limited WLAN connectivity with strange icons is a quick-fix that worked after a BIOS update of the laptop.
Those were just my experience with this laptop I had bought for somebody. From Toshiba forums there are a whole host of other problems, some ridiculous and user-caused; but some not. I think XP should be expected to work fine on t hese laptops, but really you want an intel, not realtek, WLAN adapter, and make sure you give it a thorough going over before your return-to-shop period is up.
If anybody has any questions about any of these cheaply priced Toshibas, check out Toshiba forums, where it will already have been answered. If you own a Toshiba laptop in these ranges, update the BIOS first, to see if that makes a difference.
feels very rough when running your finger around the edges
[Tommy Cooper] "I went to the doctor, I said 'Doctor, it hurts when I do this'. He said ' Don't do it then'. [/Tommy Cooper]