Toshiba Portege Z830

Laptops Nov 25, 2011 9 Comments

First I saw Toshiba Portege Z830’s advert in Metro. The ad was in the form of a story disguised in a news which described how a man suffering from some mysterious disease and unable to lift anything heavier than his mobile managed to lift this ultrabook from his fingers. Nice way to jumble up news, story, fact and disguise the laptop advert but couldn’t fool me. Bad propaganda, the agency which did should be fired.

Any way, after reading that rubbish I decided to check out Z830 to see why this gadget is really a news worthy.

Toshiba Portege Z830

Toshiba Portege Z830

Toshiba and lightweight laptops don’t go hand in hand. Toshiba laptops are notoriously bulky, thanks to Toshiba’s obsession to pack everything possible in a laptop. I own a Qosmio and before this I had a Satellite M series laptop. Both were bulky enough to be used as dumbell, as noisy as a tractor and hot enough to fry an egg.

So if the makers of such heavy duty laptops come up with something ultralight ultrabook than it is enough to make noise.

Toshiba Portege Z830 has no moving parts and it’s casing is made entirely from Magnesium Alloy which makes it a perfect mobile laptop.

The Portege Z830 Ultralight Ultrabook

At just 1.12 kg Toshiba Z830 is an ideal laptop for highly mobile professionals and executives. It’s lightweight and think frame makes it a perfect travel companion without compromising the power of a true computing device.

Toshiba Portege Z830 Ultrabook

Toshiba Portege Z830 Ultrabook

What separates this ultrabook from laptop is the solid state hard drive. Yes you heard me, there is no mechanical device in this laptops (of course except fan) which makes it lighter, thinner and ultimately a true ultrabook.

Hard Drive

The most revolutionary feature in Z830 is the solid state hard drive. Hard drives are the ones to blame for the laptop weight. Take it out and you end up with a much lighter computing device. Apple did it long time back and they have been using flash drives instead of mechanical hard drives.

So Toshiba did Apple and used a Solid state device resulting in a ultrathin ultrabook 8.3mm thin device.

128GB of SSD is quite more than enough for any heavy user. Toshiba didn’t compromise with the disk space by using SSD which is big plus for this laptop.

Processor

Toshiba Portege Z830 is powered by 2nd generation of Intel i3/i5 processor which makes it a very powerful laptop sufficient for high end usages, multimedia and gaming. Processor speed of 1.40 GHz is a big turn off. Most of the latest laptops and notebooks come with at least 2.2 GHz so 1.40GHz is going to make you think twice before purchasing this ultrabook.

Memory

Toshiba Portege Z830 is capable of just 4GB of RAM which in my point of view is very less. In 21st century anything less than 8GB is a complete disappointment.

Toshiba Portege Z830 are powered by Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit and Windows 7 Professional 64-bit Operating systems which allows at minimum of 8GB RAM. So just having 4GB is underutilization.

However given the fact that there is no mechanical device and it is powered by the high end processor it seems to me that 4GB is not going to compromise with the performance.

Operating systems

Toshiba Portege Z830 series of ultrabooks come with pre-installed Genuine Windows® 7 Home Premium 64-bit or Windows® 7 Home Professional 64-bit operating system.

Graphics

Intel HD Graphics 3000 is used in this ultrathin ultrabook which makes it an ideal choice for entertainment enthusiasts and gamers.

Graphics Specifications
Type : Intel® HD Graphics 3000
Memory : up to 1,696 MB shared memory with 4 GB system memory installed, (with pre-installed 64-bit operating system)
Memory type : shared

Keyboard

Toshiba Portege Z830 keyboard is matt black and it looks quite impressive. However I’ll always have doubt abut Toshiba laptops’ keyboards. Keyboards are always a pain with Toshiba laptops. Only time will tell how good keyboards are with these ultrabooks.

Toshiba Portege Z830 - keyboard

Toshiba Portege Z830 - keyboard

Battery life

Toshiba claims that Toshiba Portege Z830 can give up to 8 hours of battery life which I think might be true. I personally never find Toshiba laptops to last longer on battery. 3-4 hours used to be the peak which I had with my 2 Toshiba laptops.

Weight

Toshiba Portege Z830 - Side View

Toshiba Portege Z830 - Side View

Toshiba Portege Z830 just weighs 1.12kg which makes it truly mobile laptop and an ideal gadget for highly mobile professionals.

Display

Toshiba Portege Z830 comes with just 13.3inch screen which is a bit of disappointment. I personally never prefer a laptop with screen size less than 15.6inch. 13.3inch (33.8cm) is really less for a techie like me. But that is the catch, you can’t make a 15.6inch laptop as ultrathin and ultrabook, can you?

Display is Toshiba HD non-reflective High Brightness display with 16 : 9 aspect ratio and LED backlighting.

The internal resolution is 1,366 x 768

Dimensions

W x D x H : 316.0 x 227.0 x 8.3 (front) / 15.9 (rear) mm

Toshiba Portege Z830 Ultrathin Ultrabook

Toshiba Portege Z830 Ultrathin Ultrabook

Design Colour

Steel grey metallic, magnesium chassis, matt black keyboard.

Toshiba Portege Z830 Ultrabook - Magnesium Alloy Frame

Toshiba Portege Z830 Ultrabook - Magnesium Alloy Frame

Interfaces

One of the reasons why I, personally, prefer Toshiba laptops is the interfaces. Most of the Toshiba laptop models are packed with almost all possible interfaces which makes it easier to connect laptop to external devices. Toshiba Portege Z830 is no exception. It has a bult-in camera & microphone. It has HDMI port which lets you to connect to all latest gadgets at high speed. HDMI allows digital transfer of data. If you have a HDTV then you can directly connect Z830 to a TV.

  • 1 × integrated 1.3 Megapixels Web Camera with AutoMacro support
  • 1 × external microphone
  • 1 × built-in microphone
  • 1 × headphone (stereo)
  • 1 × HDMI supporting 1080p signal format
  • 1 × DC-in
  • 1 × external monitor
  • 1 × RJ-45
  • 1 × SD™ Card Reader (supports SD™ Card up to 2 GB, miniSD™/microSD™ Card with adapter up to 2 GB, SDHC™ Card up to 32 GB, SDXC™ Card up to 64 GB and MultiMedia Card™ up to 2 GB)
  • 1 (Right) × USB 3.0
  • 2 (Rear) × USB 2.0 (left one supporting Sleep-and-Charge)

Networking

It supports wireless 802.11a/b/g/n, WiFi, Wireless LAN and Bluetooth 3.0.
It has Gigabit Ethernet LAN as well.

Sound

Built-in stereo speakers which supports 24-bit stereo format.

Bundled Software

Toshiba bundled too many software and it is a big pain. All these bundled software reduce laptop’s performance and most of them you would never use. Z830 comes with following bundled software

  • Toshiba Bluetooth™ Stack
  • Toshiba User’s Manual
  • Toshiba Assist
  • Chicony Camera Assistant Software
  • Toshiba Face Recognition
  • Toshiba Value Added Package (Toshiba Power Saver, Toshiba Zooming Utility, Toshiba PC Diagnostic Tool, Toshiba Flash Cards, Toshiba Components Common Driver, Toshiba Accessibility, Toshiba Button Support)
  • McAfee® Internet Security (includes free Internet updates for 30 days)
  • Toshiba Recovery Media Creator
  • Nero BackItUp & Burn Autobackup Essentials
  • Skype
  • Windows Live Essentials
  • eBay
  • Amazon
  • This PC includes limited functionality versions of Microsoft ® Word and Excel with advertising. Purchase Microsoft ® Office 2010 to activate a full-featured suite preloaded on this PC.
  • Nero Multimedia Suite 10 Essential
  • Google
  • Toshiba Security Assist
  • Connectivity Doctor
  • Toshiba utilities and drivers
  • ConfigFree™

Toshiba EasyGuard

  • Security
  • Toshiba Security Assist
  • Antivirus Software
  • Password Utilities
  • Computrace® enabled BIOS
  • Execute Disable Bit (XD-Bit)
  • Toshiba Device Access Control (on request)
  • Intel® Anti-Theft

Protection

  • PC Diagnostics
  • Kensington Lock
  • Data Backup
  • Shock Protection Design
  • Durable Design
  • Spill-resistant Keyboard
  • Solid State Drive (SSD)

Connectivity

  • Bluetooth®
  • Wireless LAN (802.11a/b/g/N)
  • HDMI-out
  • Toshiba ConfigFree™
  • Video over IP ready
  • Voice over IP ready
  • Diversity Antenna

Manageability

  • Multi-Touch Touchpad
  • Toshiba Media Contoller
  • Toshiba LifeSpace
  • Eco Utility
  • PC Health Monitor
  • Toshiba TEMPRO Performance Tuning Service
  • Toshiba Power Saver Utility
  • Virtualization Technology
  • Dynadock ‘USB Port Replicator’ (optional)

Special Features

  • EasyControl Bar with 2 Control Buttons (Eco Utility Button, Toshiba Presentation Button)
  • SM BIOS compliant
  • ENERGY STAR 5.0 qualified computer
  • Enhanced Intel® SpeedStep® Technology
  • HD Audio support

Performance

1.40 GHz of processor and a SSD can give a good performance for entertainment or gaming. It can also easily sustain high demanding applications such as Photoshop.

Toshiba Portege Z830 Models

At the moment Toshiba Portege Z830 is available in 3 models in the UK; Portégé Z830-10N, Portégé Z830-10P and Portégé Z830-104. All models are exactly same with just some differences in Operating System and Processors.

Price

Toshiba Portege Z830 starts from £899 (exc VAT) which is a little bit steep but can be justified as this laptop is think and comes with Solid State Drive.

Conclusion

At first look all the hype generated by Toshiba’s PR machine can be a temptation for gadget enthusiasts. But digging down further you will end up only with disappointment. 1.40 GHz processor speed is too less and a 13.3 inch of screen size is a big turn off.

The 8.33inch thickness and a magnesium alloy frame can be attractive from outside but a constant whirling fan and under utilized memory is not going to convince me to shell out my hard earned £899 .

Comments

9 Responses to “ Toshiba Portege Z830 ”
  1. Jess

    Toshiba Portege Z830 looks a nice gadget to have. I was thinking to biy it but I’ve concern about the fan noise. Can anyone tell me how noisy it is?

    • Ajay

      It will have a constant whirling noise as with all other high end laptops.

    • Gavin

      I’ve just sold one of these to a customer of ours. Before he took it home, we did a full “run-up” for him. It makes next to no noise at all and is extremely fast to startup and shut down. In all, a very nice and neat laptop with plenty of power.

      • Ajay

        That’s good news if true. But I’ve seen reviews where people say that fan is a nuisance.

    • enrique

      fan is super noisy. it keeps running every single moment. if you work in a quiet room, do not buy it.

  2. Timmy

    Hi Mate!
    Do you know where to buy Toshiba Portege Z830?
    It’s not available online or in stores. I checked PC World and they said it will take another month of time to get the stock.

    • Ajay

      You have to wait, or try the main Toshiba retailers. Did you check Toshiba’s online store?

  3. Bernd

    When I read

    “128GB of SSD is quite more than enough for any heavy user. Toshiba didn’t compromise with the disk space by using SSD which is big plus for this laptop”

    I simply get frustrated and annoyed, the sad truth being that there is quite a big difference between the “marketing disk size” of 128GB and the available size of 103’986’229’248 bytes (and – of course – only 96.8 GB which can really be used for file storage).

    The obsession to boast with thinner and thinner laptops seems to lead to bigger and bigger lies.

    What is important for mobility is the weight and not two or three mm less in thickness.

    • Ajay

      For me the most important aspect is the speed which, unfortunately, is controlled by Bill Gates and his crappy Windows OS. And it is not going to get any better in future.

      Laptops suck to be honest. No matter how powerful laptop they make, it will still have sluggish performance which deteriorate with age.

      I keep replacing hard drives every 2 years or so but it doesn’t solve the issue.

      Flash is certainly the way forward until we get something better for the storage. Even laptops with flash drive ain’t better when it comes to performance. It seems we are stuck for a while in the Intel-Windows conspiracy.

Leave a Reply to enrique