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Toshiba Portege Z835 Review: The Best Ultrabook Discussion

Discussion in 'Notebook News and Reviews' started by Charles P. Jefferies, Nov 15, 2011.

  1. heavyharmonies

    heavyharmonies Notebook Evangelist

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  2. MidnightSun

    MidnightSun Emodicon Super Moderator

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    Impressive. For that price, I think most would be willing to forgive the Z835's few shortfalls. If you're not going to be intensively writing files to the SSD (probably not a really common usage scenario), it should be a great ultrabook choice. At $699, it's about the same price as an equivalently-specced X220 (granted, the latter does have an IPS display). Still don't really like Toshiba's design language, but the price is unbeatable in this segment.
     
  3. Charles P. Jefferies

    Charles P. Jefferies TG Lead Moderator Super Moderator

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    For $699 that is a fantastic deal; thanks for posting it.
     
  4. Mitlov

    Mitlov Shiny

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    Not to mention, the shortfalls are indeed pretty few (no 900p resolution springs to mind). But it's the lightest ultrabook on the market and it has good build quality...hard to argue with that. For $699, I'm almost tempted to go get one myself. I won't--I love my Vaio F and don't mind carting it around in a messenger bag--but I'm very tempted indeed.

    As for styling, I actually really love its crisp, angular look.
     
  5. MidnightSun

    MidnightSun Emodicon Super Moderator

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    Agreed; the main shortfalls I see are the lack of a higher screen resolution and the relatively slow SSD (the write speeds seem abnormally slow). That, and something about the looks isn't particularly attractive to me, but in any case it is far better than the standard Toshiba look. All of these flaws are easily forgotten when the price is only $699, though--indeed, at that price point, most laptops still only have 1366x768 screen options anyway.
     
  6. sargent75

    sargent75 Notebook Consultant

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    The Z830-2005U is currently the Malaysia or Asia edition. Comes with

    - i5-2467
    - 13.3" LED LCD (semi glossy)
    - Intel HD Graphics
    - Windows 7 32-bit
    - 6GB RAM (not sure why they bundled this as the 32-bit OS will not use more than 4GB)
    - NO Backlight keyboard (a major disappointment, Asus and Acer is a better deal).
    - Too many bloatwares.
    - The 128GB Toshiba SSD is super slow (Asus comes bundled with SATA3 6GBps)
    - Bluetooth 3.0 (Asus comes with Bluetooth 4.0)

    This laptop is over priced and nothing to shout about compared to Asus or Acer which both have better processor, specs and value for the money.

    There is also no 30 days money back guarantee for Toshiba purchased in Malaysia, unlike Dell, HP or IBM.
     
  7. Charles P. Jefferies

    Charles P. Jefferies TG Lead Moderator Super Moderator

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    Depends on where you are in the world, I suppose. Here in the U.S, the Z835 as reviewed is around $700 on sale, $800 normally. Great deal. Interesting that there are versions without the backlit keyboard. I consider that a must on an Ultrabook.

    The SSD I agree however, it is downright pathetic. Slower than many hard drives.
     
  8. sargent75

    sargent75 Notebook Consultant

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    By far, I wouldn't say the Z830 is the best ultrabook.

    Asus came into the market in as a budget product, where Toshiba was the premium tier-1 product and costs alot more.

    Now Asus with the Zenbook UX31 beats the Z830 flat out. With more competitive specs and lower priced.

    e.g.
    The SSD on Zenbook is also a 6Gbps where the Z830 is only 3Gbps.

    Bluetooth 4.0 on Zenbook and Bluetooth 3.0 on Z830.

    Brighter and higher resolution LCD available on the Asus Zenbook i7 with 1600x900 ! Not sure why Toshiba always has the pathetic 1366x768.

    The Z830 Asia edtion comes bundled with 6GB RAM. 4GB is ALOT for an ultrabook and can take alot of heavy office workload. Why waste the addition 2GB RAM. Could have bundled the costs to beef up the keyboard backlight and the Bluetooth 4.0.

    The finishing on the Asus Zenbook is also better even the LCD is almost twice brighter !

    The Japanese are clearly losing out to be competitive. Take for instance Sony. Losses in over 8 years. Samsung and LG beats Sony out flat on pricing with the features/quality.

    The Toshiba is manufacturerd in China, which is cheaper to ship within Asia, Asus as a smaller company managed to do that, and also beat many Tier-1 manufacturers to their game. Toshiba just created too many models out of the same thing with $100-200 difference and they left it to badly managed retailers and distributors (locally).

    Not too long ago, Taiwanese manufacturers are horrible on their bundled software, bad support - left to local retailers or distributors and almost no patch updates, now they have pretty much improved on their software, website updates etc. Most importantly they make much more competitive products of higher quality and also features than Toshiba.

    For casual non-business use. If in Malaysia, given the choice of Toshiba or Asus coz they are almost the same in support services, which are done by distributors. I will opt for Asus.

    For business use. If Toshiba is compared to Dell or HP notebooks. I will definately choose Dell & HP because of their support and Dell's money back guarantee, 1-to-1 swap, accidental damange protection etc. It's clearly shown, Toshiba's market is only to target low-end consumers where other Taiwanese products have already out grown from that market.

    I hope Toshiba realizes this and rectify their product planning flaws. Coz Toshiba WAS one of my favourite after IBM. Customers are better taken care when the direct manufacturers serve the customers instead of leaving it to distributors and retailers !

    Would it be possible to find a US version of the z835 keyboard and replace it to a Z830 Asia edition? So I can have the LED backlight keyboard ?
     
  9. BigNerd

    BigNerd Notebook Deity

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    Not sure where you are seeing the Asus UX31 cheaper than the Toshiba Z835... must be an outside of US thing.

    Plus the UX31 has a few problems... you can read about them in their threads.
     
  10. sargent75

    sargent75 Notebook Consultant

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    Yup. it's just an Entire Asia which is booming in economy ,thriving and hard working people. Toshiba has forgotten and ignored it's home ground where more than 50% of the populations are. I don't see a reason why they have to make a lesser model for Asia and America gets a better model. This is where manufacturers will fail. Take for instance Apple. They are consistent bin the model.

    One thing odd i find is, Toshiba made in China, but with lesser ones to Asia and better ones (sell cheaper) in the US and ignore the rest.

    This is a typical Japanese idiosyncrasy. Best to avoid an inconsistent brand.
     
  11. ZaZ

    ZaZ Super Model Super Moderator

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    The Z835 has some redeeming qualities. It's inexpensive and has lots of ports. I can live the plastic case and average keyboard, but this machine has two fatal flaws in my opinion - the screen is sub par, at least the one I have is. The blue hue on it throws things out of whack. The viewing angles are like 1° too. Even the side angles are not very good.

    I think I could live with that too, but the fan is on all the time. It's got a grind/hum to it that's really annoying. Personally, I would rather pay for something I like as opposed to settling for something because it's cheap.

    I never understand the fascination with thin either. I think there's a stronger correlation between weight and portability than thinness.
     
  12. sargent75

    sargent75 Notebook Consultant

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    They haven't learned from Apple yet. Being a Japanese origin product. Their designs and models can be very off tangent all of a sudden.

    Just like Sony. Designed one of the best chicklet keyboards back in 2005 (way before Apple Macbook Air), then they dumped it and start fresh with a model that is completely inferior. This is why Sony is reporting losses for the past 8 years ! and Toshiba is no different.

    We have this problem with the local distributors that dictates and controls the market where their marketing team is way below standards and not bothered about the consumer as they think they control the product shares of a brand-name. Stupid decisions to allow only non-backlight keyboards editions by the local distributor in Malaysia, and they don't control / educate the local retailers on their products. e.g. retailers locally (malaysia) all thinks there is keyboard backlight. None that I have checked know about this.
     
  13. sargent75

    sargent75 Notebook Consultant

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    Yes. I just got the Toshiba z830 returned back to Toshiba with a 2 page complain letter on the product and full refund.

    Walking far away from Toshiba if they leave it to a distributor or reseller to handle the product for support & product features planning (no keyboard backlight for Asia and way over priced compared to a much better built Asus Zenbook, HP Folio....)
     
  14. Mitlov

    Mitlov Shiny

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    If you've got such a bias against products where the company happens to be headquartered in Japan, why'd you buy a Toshiba in the first place?
     
  15. sargent75

    sargent75 Notebook Consultant

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    I have always had good thoughts about it since 8 years ago (my last Toshiba), the recent one was an Ultrabook.

    In between that it's always been IBM (pre-Lenovo).

    The Z830 has been return happily to the Dealers and a complain letter to Toshiba's sole/master distributor in Malaysia.

    There are just other better choices out there than what was advertised falsely by Toshiba or it's appointed online agents made an over blown marketing mis-representation of it.

    Am just disapponted and hoping Toshiba will sincerely improve as there's not much of a good quality product like they used to have in those days 10 years ago.

    Just didn't want un-suspecting people to make the wrong decision. They need to be properly informed. Not with marketing hype.
     
  16. jinnijinn

    jinnijinn Newbie

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    My z835-370 arrived today, and so far I'm in love with it. I held off on buying it because of the complaints about the fan, and then read that that'd been fixed...in six hours of use so far (yay for good battery life!), the fan on mine has come on once, for about ten seconds.

    It's peppy, quiet, light, has all my wished-for ports, and I've no quarrel with the screen after making a couple adjustments. I like the keyboard and trackpad a lot, as well. And I like the styling better than the MBA 13".

    I'm very satisfied.
     
  17. przemke

    przemke Notebook Geek

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    I got interested in this model. Can you describe where you read that? was it a bios fix ?

    Has anyone thought of replacing the battery ? getting to it as most other components is actually easy as seen on youtube (with T6 or T7 torx screwdriver for the center screw, not sure) but what about supply for such ? haven't seen it on ebay

    without being able to replace the battery the ultrabook after say 1,5-3 years - depending on use - becomes worth crap! I am suprised no one has raised concern about this here!
     
  18. Charles P. Jefferies

    Charles P. Jefferies TG Lead Moderator Super Moderator

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    A non-replaceable battery is not uncommon these days; Apple has been doing it for years but the Apple fanbois drown out any dissidence.

    Truth is, after ~3 years a personal computer isn't worth much anyway.

    I made a poll to see how many people swap batteries in their notebook: Computer Hardware Forum
    Just representative of NBR of course. This forum tends to collect power users so you'll probably get a higher percentage here than in the general populace.
     
  19. BigNerd

    BigNerd Notebook Deity

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    Yeah... my z835 is just over a year old... and it will probably get replaced by end of year (if not sooner... I like all these Win8 Tablet convertibles).

    I've never swapped a battery... but then again... I buy new notebooks instead.
     
  20. przemke

    przemke Notebook Geek

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    Thanks for the poll :)
    Well true but depends also on your location and earnings - how much that "not much" can get you - in other words your $$ buying power ;) Here in poorer countries of Europe I think it's a bit different, electronics tend to get squeezed more of their life by being repaired and resold. 100bucks here gets you much more food or services than in say US although prices for hardware are similar (or noticeably cheaper in US to be honest)

    so the more expensive stuff like laptops still do pose some real value after 3 or even 5 years (for the higher-end stuff) and the working hour costs much less so it's usually more worth to repair something
     

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