Heat and Noise
The Toshiba E305 manages to keep the heat from its internal components away from the user but the fan noise is quite noticeable. The self-adjusting fan speeds frequently run at a speed which is more than loud enough to hear in a quiet room. The fan volume isn’t enough to bother most people, but if you’re using the laptop in a quiet office or classroom setting the person sitting next to you will notice the white noise coming from the laptop fan. The only obvious hot spots on the exterior of this notebook are near the heat vent and the hard drive, but even those areas stay below 90 degrees Fahrenheit.
In the “balanced” power mode with 75% screen brightness, the Satellite E305-S1990X lasted for six hours and six minutes of non-stop use with wireless active and refreshing a page every 60 seconds. This is pretty good for a 14-inch notebook with a stock 6-cell battery. Still, this is slightly less battery life than what we’ve seen from the less expensive HP Pavilion dm3t and the ASUS U31JG-A1 notebooks.
Battery life test results (higher scores mean better battery life):
After spending a few weeks with the new Toshiba Satellite E305 I’m left with a number of mixed feelings. The E305 is packed with some very good features and delivers more than enough performance for the typical laptop user or family. The new Intel Core i5 processor and integrated graphics provide plenty of muscle for typical software and multimedia tasks. This isn’t a gaming notebook, but you can play basic games that don’t require high performance graphics cards.
The areas where the E305 disappoints are more a matter of personal perspective rather than serious flaws. The E305 features an aluminum LCD lid and an aluminum top plate surrounding the keyboard, but the metal is extremely thin and feels similar to plastic at first touch. The E305 simply doesn’t “feel” as solid as other aluminum notebooks like the Apple MacBook Air or the HP Envy. Add to that the annoying touchpad and the Best Buy bloatware that comes pre-installed on this Best Buy exclusive notebook and the E305 gives the impression that it’s lower quality than its specs or price might suggest.
Ultimately, the Satellite E305 isn’t a bad notebook. In fact, it performs exceptionally well and offers a lot of little extras for $900. Unfortunately, it just doesn’t stand out as a “must have” laptop.
- Good performance
- Backlit keyboard
- Blu-ray drive
- Cheap feel to construction
- No discrete graphics option
- Integrated touchpad buttons don’t work well