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Toshiba Satellite Pro R850-143 review: Toshiba Satellite Pro R850-143

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The R850's 500GB hard drive offers plenty of room for storing documents and files and also has an impact sensor that can park the drive's heads, if it senses that the laptop is going into freefall, in order to protect your data. There's a DVD writer onboard too and you'll find a multi-format memory card reader tucked into the left-hand side of the chassis. This supports both standard SD cards as well as Sony's Memory Stick format.

A question of ports

The line up of ports isn't bad. Along with two standard USB 2.0 ports, there's also a USB 3.0 port on the left hand side. Although there aren't a huge number of USB 3.0 devices on the market at the moment, it's still good to see it included here. What's more, Toshiba has also added a dual-function eSATA/USB port that's enabled for sleep and charge. This allows you to charge portable kit like smartphones and MP3 players even when the laptop is switch off.

If you need to hook the R850 up to a hi-def TV, the HDMI port which is nestled alongside the VGA output will come in very handy, as it carries both audio and video over the same lead. Networking duties are taken care of by a Gigabit Ethernet port, wireless n Wi-Fi and Bluetooth V3.0.

Most 15-inch laptops manage to run for around 1 hour 20 minutes in our Battery Eater test. This test runs the processor at full whack to simulate worst-case-scenario battery life. The R850 did better than most, managing to keep going for 1 hour 42 minutes, which is pretty impressive in anyone's book.

Conclusion

Overall, the Satellite Pro R850 is a solidly built laptop that offers good performance and has a decent lineup of features. It doesn't excel in any one particular area, however, and we were disappointed by its less than inspiring keyboard.

Edited by Nick Hide

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