by Daniel A. Begun — Monday, March 08, 2010
Toshiba Satellite E205-S1904 WiDi Laptop Review
Design and Build Quality
The E205 measure 1.22 x 13.7 x 9.57-inches (HWD), weighs 5.1 pounds, and comes in a sleek and stylish chassis with softly rounded corners. The top of the lid has what Toshiba refers to as a "fusion finish in metallic blue," which is another way of saying it is very shiny, dark blue, has a cool diamond pattern, and attracts fingerprints like a squirrel collects nuts in the autumn. Unless you handle the E205 with white cotton gloves or you lack sweat glands in your hands, expect to leave difficult-to-buff-out smudges and streaks on the lid. The E205 comes with a microfiber cleaning cloth--but we're not sure if the cloth is meant for cleaning the display or the lid.
Opening the cover reveals a full-sized keyboard set back on a 3.4-inch wrist rest that includes a 3.2x1.6-inch multi-touch touchpad that is flush with the bezel. The bezel around the keyboard area has the same pattern as the cover, but is instead a darker charcoal color. The left and right touchpad buttons are flush with the bezel and are rather large, but still a comfortable size--the buttons are blue in color so that they stand out against the black bezel. The keyboard is backlit and includes a healthy collection of function keys for typical functions such as brightness, volume mute, and video output options. There is also a dedicated button for disabling the touchpad when you need to do lots of typing. A strip of dedicated function buttons runs down the right side of the keyboard, including enabling/disabling the Toshiba ECO Utility (for additional power savings), launching the Intel Wireless Display app, and the requisite play/pause button.
The 14-inch diagonal LCD uses an LED backlight and has a native resolution of 1366x768 (16:9). The LCD is flush with a plain black bezel, giving it a simple understated look that won't add any distractions when viewing content on the screen. Above the display is a 0.3-megapixel webcam and a microphone.
The only control on the front of the E205 is a small physical slider for turning the Wi-Fi radio on and off. Also along the right side of the front edge of the laptop are status lights for things such as power, battery, and hard disk activity. The left side of the unit includes a single USB port, a pair of headphone and microphone jacks, and an exhaust vent.
The backside of the laptop houses the power plug, 10/100Mbps Ethernet jack, VGA port, and a lock slot. The right side of the E205 is where you'll find the slot-loading DVD+/-RW drive, card-reader slot, HDMI port, USB port, and an eSATA port that can also be used as a third USB port--this "combo" port also supports "sleep and charge," so you should be able to charge your devices even when the laptop is sleeping or powered down (you have to enable sleep and charge in software before you can start using it). The bottom of the E205 hides the stereo speakers behind a set of grills, and this is also where you'll find the removable, 5,800mAh, 6-cell, Li-Ion battery. There is no easy access to the hard drive, so it is not easily user upgradable.
Tags: Toshiba Satellite, Intel WiDi, Intel Wireless Display technology, Intel Core i5, integrated Mobile Intel HD Graphics, mainstream laptop, thin-and-light laptop, Best Buy Blue Label, Netgear-Push2TV WiDi Adapter
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