I was considering buying a used laptop, but then I saw this machine at Walmart. I wasn't expecting to by a computer at Walmart that day, but I had saved just up just over 300 dollars for a used one I had been eyeing up online. I decided to take a chance and get it, I could always return it, right?
I have been using computers for over 20 years, and I am VERY happy with my new laptop. You can't beat this machine for the price, I am amazed at how well to runs. It will sometimes lag under heavy usage, so don't plan on using it for heavy gaming. However, if you want a solid machine for internet and media usage, I'd advise you to look into the Satellite.
The only two drawbacks it has are the CPU is a little under-powered for high-end gaming (I am a "classic" gamer so that isn't a huge one to me) and it only has USB 2 rather then the newer and much faster USB 3 ports. The built-in webcam is more then acceptable and has very good performance for use with Skype. The speakers are fairly good, and can be adjusted for usage in different areas by software. You can always get a set of desktop speakers to plug into the side jack if you want better. The video is very good, the screen is a good size and very clear. Again, if you want better, you can always hook up an external monitor for watching DVDs and such. The computer has no HDMI or S-video port, but if you are buying a laptop within this price range, chances are you aren't buying high-end monitors anyways.
The Wireless card works just fine, it seems to have normal range and performance. I had no problems connecting to my Netgear router.
If you haven't used Windows 7 before, you might be surprised at it's improved usability. It is a huge improvement over XP. The hard drive isn't huge, but it is more then large enough for to store you favorite songs and photos along with a good amount of movies.
Battery life is good, even on the "high performance" setting you should have over 3 hours of usage. Setting it to "balanced" or "power-saver" might give you up to 6.
This machine is a 64-bit system, so it can run most resent programs without trouble. I have had almost no problems running older 32-bit programs, those that I did seemed to be the program rather then the laptop.
Toshiba has also included some useful programs, such as the Bulletin Board. It's a program that runs in the background and has a little push-pin icon on the taskbar. Open the Bulletin Board for that icon, and it gives you a short tutorial on it's usage. It basically acts as a sort of organizer where you can add "to do" list, virtual post-it notes, and shortcuts to your preferred programs and files.
All-in-all, this is an excellent laptop for a student or anyone needing a low-priced but usable PC.
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