The Toshiba Satellite P875 is a big machine. Weighing in at over 6.5lbs., the notebook is clearly not built for portability; it's a desktop replacement through and through. While users will have to concede on portability, they will receive some impressive specs in return. Equipped with a beautiful 17.3-inch full HD display and 2.4 GHz Intel Core processor, the Toshiba Satellite packs a punch.
Does the Satellite offer enough to entice users to lug its massive frame around? Read the full review to find out.
Build and Design
The Satellite P875 offers a dark silver aluminum finish on its chassis. The dark metallic cover runs along the bottom of the chassis and the top panel of the display, a lighter silver metallic cover protects the ports along the side, while a black plastic finish surrounds the display. The colors contrast nicely and provide a suitable aesthetic. It's not the sleekest looking notebook, but its not an eye sore either.
The desktop replacement is rather large measuring in at 16.5" x 10.7" x 1.3" and weighing in at 6.6lbs. (varying depending on build). With its large dimensions and added weight, lugging the machine to and from the office became quite a chore. With the added weight of my additional belongs and the power adapter, carrying the Toshiba for extended periods of time became noticeably uncomfortable. Sure you'll be able to move the device, but it's not intended for continuous travel.
Given its bulk, the Toshiba Satellite is a sturdy machine. Both the chassis and display held up extremely well to pressure. The chassis didn't give at all during our testing, even when extreme pressure was applied. While the display gave slightly, no noticeable rippling occurred on the screen.
There were a few instances which raised alarms however. On the top left hand side of the display, the plastic lining appears to be slightly warped causing an audible snap to occur when pressure is directly applied to the area. Additionally, one of the covers on the bottom of the chassis is misshaped, curving outwards away from the chassis. Both of these anomalies are likely production errors, but the fact that two of them reside on our review device is worrisome to say the least.
Ports and Features
Being a desktop replacement, it comes as no surprise that the Toshiba Satellite offers a wide selection of ports and solid connectivity. Along the right side of the device, there is a headphone and mic jack, two USB 3.0 ports, an HDMI port, a VGA port and a power jack. The left side of the device houses an optical drive, two USB 3.0 ports and an Ethernet port. Additionally, along the front end of the chassis there is a SD card reader.
|Left: Ethernet, two USB 3.0 ports, optical drive||Right: Headphone & Mic ajacks, two USB 3.0 Ports, HDMI port, VGA port|
The Toshiba Satellite P875 makes good use of its size spacing out the ports. Everything is easily within in reach, but none of the ports conflict with one another. The solid connectivity that the Satellite offers is ideal for a desktop replacement since you'll likely have devices connected to the notebook the majority of the time.
Screen and Speakers
As a desktop replacement, the Toshiba Satellite offers a large 17.3-inch display and it's a beauty. The 17.3-inch FHD TruBrite Backlit Display offers great visuals with a 1920x1080 resolution. The display is exceptionally bright with a clear image and strong color contrast, offering an enjoyable viewing experience.
The display is best viewed straight on, as the glossy finish can cause the display to become reflective. Similar to other glossy displays, the screen can pick up background images; this is augmented in heavily lit areas. While the reflections can be noticeable at times (especially when a darker backdrop is on the screen) it hardly diminishes the viewing experience, and is a slight annoyance at best.
While the screen is sensitive to light, it offers generous viewing angles. On the horizontal axis the display remains clear and crisp well past 100 degrees. On the vertical axis the display proves just as durable, though occasionally the awkward positioning can cause the surface to catch the light and result in the screen showing a few more reflections that it normally would. With its large display and wide viewing angles the Toshiba Satellite is great for viewing media especially with multiple viewers.
Adding to the Toshiba Satellite's media capabilities are its quality Harmon/Kardon speakers. The stereo speakers are located on the top end of the chassis to the right and left of the keyboard. The speakers are quite boisterous and capable of providing a modest-sized room with sound. Best of all, the speakers hold up extremely well at 100 percent capacity with no noticeable distortion. Users who want high quality audio will still be best served by an external sound system, but the speakers are more than serviceable for the average user.
Keyboard and Touchpad
The Toshiba Satellite P875 offers a full sized Chiclet style back-lit keyboard complete with number pad. Each key offers a glossy plastic finish that is smooth to the touch, but also provides added friction easy catching the finger tips for extra grip. The spacebar is noticeably a bit smaller than on most keyboards, but it in on way hinders the user's experience, though it does seem a bit strange at first. The machine is extremely comfortable to type on with solid key compression and tactile pushback. The clear and consistent pushback allows users to type quickly with assurance, as they can be sure that each desired key has been struck.
Unfortunately the touchpad does not offer the same utility or comfort as the keyboard. The generously sized touchpad (which uses Synaptic drivers) is located directly below the spacebar. The touchpad doesn't offer any mouse buttons, but the lower left and right portions of the pad are designated as left and right mouse clicks respectively. While this setup can potentially work, it is hard to distinguish exactly where these designated areas are, often resulting in missed clicks.
Perhaps even more detrimental is the touchpad's location. The Touchpad is substation so that the top edge of the pad can easily come in contact with the user's palm while typing. This can cause the track pad to read your palms movement as a 'swipe', often causing the screen to resize. On several occasions this happened to me causing quite a few typing errors and disrupting my progress. The touchpad's location is a serious issue, and users may want to buy an external keyboard and mouse as a result.
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