Toshiba Satellite L500D review:

Toshiba Satellite L500D

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Typical Price: $999.00
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CNET Editors' Rating

The Good Toshiba bundles both 64- and 32-bit versions of Vista in the recovery partition. Excellent features for the price.

The Bad Hot air vent on left-hand side. No gigabit Ethernet or Bluetooth. Battery life is punished due to the Radeon GPU.

The Bottom Line We like the Toshiba Satellite L500D, it's amazing value for its price. However, we think it's worth paying the extra AU$200 for the version with the less power hungry GPU.

Visit manufacturer site for details.

8.0 Overall

Design and features

The Satellite L500D is one of the fancier looking laptops we've seen in the sub-AU$1000 category, with an understated fingerprint pattern on the lid which carries through to the inside. The touchpad sits flush with the wrist rest too — an uncommon design choice, although Toshiba gets around any potential issues of knowing where the edges are by having a silken texture for the wrist rest and a coarser, stippled texture for the touchpad itself.

There are a few quick launch buttons, with simple media controls, a volume mute button and the power button situated underneath the 15.6-inch, 1366x768 monitor.

On the left-hand side is a hot air vent, which left-handed external mouse users may find annoying. Also on this side is a VGA port, 100Mb Ethernet, combined eSATA/USB port, headphone and microphone jacks. On the right is a 56Kbps modem port, two USB ports and the DVD+-RW drive. The front features an SD card reader and a rotary wheel for adjusting the volume. Just like the Compaq Presario CQ61 (on top of choosing 100Mb instead of gigabit Ethernet) Toshiba has gone with 802.11g wireless instead of 802.11n, and not included Bluetooth or an Express Card slot.

Bundled in is a Norton Internet Security 2009 trial; Microsoft Office 2007 trial; Google Desktop, Earth, Picasa and Toolbar; and a bunch of trial games. More useful are Toshiba's bundled applications, including its best of breed "Configfree" networking utility and the aforementioned eco utility.

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