Toshiba Satellite A305-S6845 Notebook

Introduction and Product Specifications

Long gone are the days when the primary differentiating factors between competing laptops models were just battery life and weight. Don't be mistaken---battery life and weight are still important; but with so many folks now using a laptop as their only computer, laptop manufacturers have stepped up their efforts on the very look of their notebook designs, as well as piling on enough features to make you never miss a desktop PC. Apple, of course, leads the charge with the sleek designs and user-friendly interface of its MacBook line of laptops. Dell and Lenovo have also had success with their updated designs. Recently, long-time computer manufacturer, Toshiba, has done a complete refresh of its Satellite line of laptops, and we had the opportunity to take an in-depth look at an example of this new look and feel with the Toshiba Satellite X305-S6845.

Unlike the Toshiba Satellite X205-SLi4 with its SLI-based graphics and 17-inch display, which we looked at in March, the A305-S6845 is not meant to be a gaming rig. That being said, The A305-S6845's 2.1GHz Intel Core 2 Duo T8100 processor, 3MB of DDR2-667 memory, dual 200GB hard drives, ATI Mobility Radeon HD 3650 GPU, and 15.4-inch screen don't necessarily preclude it from being a candidate for that market either. It has some powerful components under its hood and an aesthetic that should appeal to those looking to make the move over to a notebook and leave your desktop PC behind. In the following pages, we walk you through the design and features of the A305-S6845, and show you if its performance is strong enough to meet your needs.

Toshiba Satellite A305-S6845 Notebook
System Specifications - As Reviewed

Operating System
Windows Vista Home Premium (32-bit)

Processor: 2.1GHz Intel Core 2 Duo T8100
Front Side Bus: 800MHz

Intel PM965

3,072MB PC5300 DDR2 667MHz SDRAM

Display Size: 15.4" widescreen
Display Type: WXGA with TruBrite Technology
Display Resolution: 1,280x800, supports 720p content

Graphics Engine: ATI Mobility Radeon HD 3650
Graphics Memory: 1,279MB total: 512MB DDR discrete memory + up to 767MB shared memory w/ATI HyperMemory technology

Primary Hard Drive: 200GB, 5,400rpm
Secondary Hard Drive: 200GB, 4,200rpm
Optical Drive: DVD-SuperMulti (+/-R double layer) with LabelFlash drive supporting up to 11 formats

1.3-Megapixel webcam and microphone built into LCD bezel

Input Devices
TouchPad pointing device
86 key US keyboard
CD/DVD Buttons (Play/Pause, Stop, Prev Track, Next Track)
Internet Launch button
Finger Print Reader

Intel Wireless WiFi Link 4965 AGN (802.11a/g/n)
53kbps Modem
10/100 Ethernet LAN
No Bluetooth (No Antenna)

Audio engine: Realtek High Definition Audio
Speakers: harman/kardon stereo speakers
AC Adapter
120W (19V 6.3A) Auto-sensing, 100-240V / 50-60Hz input

Battery Type
Li-Ion, 6,000mAh, 9-cell

1-ExpressCard Slot
5-in-1 Bridge Media Adapter
4-USB (2.0) ports
1-i.LINK IEEE-1394 mini-connector
1-Regza Link (HDMI-CEC) port
1-DB-15 video connector
1-TV-out (S Video)
1-Modem port
1-Ethernet port
1-Headphone jack (stereo)
1-S/PDIF output port (shared with headphone port)
1-Microphone jack (mono)

TOSHIBA ConfigFree
TOSHIBA Face Recognition
Norton 360 All-In-One Security (60-day Trial)
TOSHIBA Games Console, designed by WildTangent
Microsoft Works Version 9.0
Google Picasa
TOSHIBA Disc Creator
TOSHIBA Speech System
Microsoft Office Trial Home and Student 2007 Edition (60-day trial)
Ulead DVD MovieFactory 5 for Toshiba

7.5 pounds laptop; 1.26 power brick & cable

Fusion finish with Horizon pattern

1-Yr Parts and Labor, 1-Year Battery

Price as configured: $1,249.99 MSRP 

The A305-S6845 is part of Toshiba's Satellite A300 series of 15.4-inch laptops. Prices range from $949.99 MSRP for the entry-level A305D-S6831 up to $1,249.99 MSRP of the A305-S6845, reviewed here. All four models come with Windows Vista Home Premium, 3GB of RAM, a double-layer DVD-/+RW drive, 802.11a/g/n wireless networking, and a built-in webcam. The differences between the models are processing power, hard drive storage capacity, and GPU power (the two lower-end models are powered by an AMD Turion 64 X2 Dual-Core TL-64 processor, while the two higher-end models use an Intel Core 2 Duo T8100 CPU). Additionally, the A305-S6845 is the only A300 model to come with a 6,000mAh Li-Ion battery (the other three models have 4,000mAh batteries), integrated fingerprint reader, and HDMI output. While the four models represent standard SKUs that are available from multiple sources, the two top-end systems of the A300 line can be custom configured from

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