Toshiba has a strong reputation for being able to put together budget laptops that have the look and feel of more expensive machines. The L300 has a rock-bottom price tag of just £390, so we were intrigued to see whether Toshiba had managed once again to avoid the usual pitfalls of budget machines, such as flexing cases and poor keyboards.
It's pretty obvious from the L300's case that this is a budget machine. There's none of the glossy finishes that you'll find on Toshiba's more expensive laptops. Don't let that put you off, however, because the L300's sliver and matte-black colour scheme still manages to look very professional. The chassis feels sturdy, with little of the flexing we'd usually associate with budget machines.
When you pop the lid open, you're greeted by the 15.4-inch widescreen display. It has a glossy X-Black-style finish, so pictures and movies look very impressive, although you'll see reflections if you're in a bright environment. Thanks to the 1,280x800-pixel resolution, it offers up plenty of desktop space when you're working on documents or surfing the Web.
The L300's keyboard is also very good. The layout is sensible and the keys are not only large, but also have good travel. Add to this a roomy trackpad with responsive buttons and you've got a usable combination that's comfortable for both work and fun.