Toshiba Satellite A205-S4639
At a Glance
Toshiba Satellite A205-S4639 Notebook
Though hampered by poor battery life, the A205-S4639 offers pretty good performance and great sound.
The Toshiba Satellite A205-S4639 lacks the wow factor, and It doesn't have a mobile-broadband card or even Bluetooth. But it can handle most applications, looks good, and has two hard drives--one with a capacity of 160GB and the other 120GB. If you generate big files, this $1500 Windows Vista Ultimate portable could make you quite happy.
The A205 turned in pretty good speed numbers: Equipped with a 1.73-GHz Core 2 Duo T5300 processor and 2GB of RAM, it earned a WorldBench 6 Beta 2 score of 67, putting it in the top 25 percent of currently tested laptops. But its 128MB nVidia GeForce Go 7300 graphics card isn't powerful enough for reliable 3D gaming. It managed a smooth and perfectly playable 41 frames per second in Far Cry with antialiasing turned off, but it reached an all-time low of 9 fps in Doom 3. Its battery life was way below par, too, at 2 hours, 28 minutes. Still, this laptop offers a nice 15.4-inch screen, a piano-black lid that adds style, and terrific-sounding Harman/Kardon Stereo speakers. The vast amount of storage (almost 300GB) gives you room to grow or a convenient way to back up files.