Toshiba has unveiled a new unit in its notebook range, the touchscreen Satellite P845T Windows 8 notebook. The Satellite P845T plumps for a surfboard-shaped style; the aluminum and plastic metal features rounded-off corners and tapering edges, thickish around the middle. In total the Satellite P845T extends 348mm x 233mm and sits 29mm proud of its perch. It all weighs 2160g. Workmanship is flawless throughout.
Inside Satellite P845T notebook we get an Intel Core i5-3317U ticking over at 1.7GHz with Intel’s HD4000 integrated graphics for visuals, with 6GB RAM (expandable to 8GB) assisting the CPU. Toshiba has supplied us with a 5400rpm 750GB spinning disk for storage. That is possibly the P845T’s weakest link, as the cost savings mean data transfer is very average. File transfer speeds – combined data read and write averages – came in at 69MB/s. And for smaller files an average burst data transfer speed of 121MB/s. An extra few seconds per day for the average user, all told.
Connectivity options are excellent for a notebook priced in the lower mid-range. VGA and HDMI interfaces, three super-quick USB-3 sockets, and 9-in-1 card slot at the ready. There’s wide-bandwidth 5GHz WiFi a/b/g/n connectivity, and again Toshiba have kicked Bluetooth connectivity into touch – whether for cost or security reasons. For the screen we get a 14-inch 10-point touchscreen panel, perfectly capable of supporting the standard gesture commands – pinch-to-zoom, swipes, double swipes, three-fingered taps, you name it. Brightness lands up at 197 cd/m2, and with deep tones the P845T manages a 0.88 candela showing. Comparing the brightest and darkest tones gives a contrast ratio of 224:1 – fine. But coverage of the sRGB palette comes in at 52%, so professional artists won’t be in the market for this as their primary work machine.
The non-backlit island-style keyboard offers a slightly spongey typing experience. But the P845T has a double-button trackpad measuring a roomy 100mm x 64mm and it obeys gestures quickly and accurately. The Satellite P845T has a 1MP cam out front for video calls – once again, par for the course.
In StarCraft 2 with medium settings the Satellite P845T chalked up 28fps at native 1366 x 768 resolution. Elsewhere, the Satellite P845T mustered 35 frames per second at low settings in Guild Wars, with the resolution at 1366 x 768. These frame rates mean the latest demanding titles are only playable at low settings, but for everything else in the average person’s daily workload – office software, multi-tab browsing, spredsheet editing – it’s child’s play for the Toshiba P845T notebook.
Users are assured of hours of moderate usage thanks to the 48W 4200mAh battery. Under undemanding conditions – emailing, document edits, light browsing – battery life should be around 7 hours, and it turns in 2:03 hours of flat-out use.
Please read our full Windows 8 review!
The Satellite P845T is already on sale. OK, so file transfer is not lightning quick, and dedicated typists would probably complain about the lack of solid feedback from the keys. But the touchscreen more than makes up for it. Intel’s HD4000 means current titles are only playable at low settings, but heck, touchscreen Windows 8 laptop for $700 – anyone looking for an inexpensive mid-ranger needs a good excuse not to opt for the P845T. For $700 there’s hardly a better notebook on the market.
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