Toshiba Satellite Radius 12 P20W-C-106 review

Laptops which are also tablets are commonplace now. But unlike the Surface Pro 4, this type has a keyboard which folds behind the screen rather than detaching completely. It runs Windows 10 which, while not the greatest tablet operating system, still represents an improvement over Windows 8. Here's our Toshiba Satellite Radius 12 review.

Toshiba Satellite Radius 12 review: Price

You can buy the Radius 12 from PC World for £999.99, but as it's brand new we expect it to be more widely available soon. It's also possible the price will drop.

The high price reflects some of the select components used, namely a brand-new 6th-generation Intel Core i7 processor, 4K UHD touchscreen and 256GB SSD. These are packed in casework crafted from stamped aluminium, here given a bronzy-gold lustre and complementary brown plastic hinges.

 Radius 12 P20W-C-106 review

Toshiba Satellite Radius 12 review: Features and design

With its 3840 x 2160 IPS panel squeezed into a 12.5in frame, it has an insanely high pixel resolution of 352ppi. Windows 10 is preset to 250 percent scaling to restore usability although we found this still rendered the interface rather small; 300 percent was more readable.

The Radius name points to hinges that allow folding the display all the way back to create a 16-mm slab that functions like a touchscreen tablet. At 1.3kg, it’s a reasonably lightweight laptop – or one overweight Windows tablet that quickly tires supporting arms.

A useful selection of ports includes one USB 3.0 each side, plus HDMI and an additional USB 3.1 Type C on the left. This promises Gen2 spec, handy for future peripherals. The right side has the power switch, recessed and devilishly tricky to operate, along with similarly stubborn volume rocker and Windows Cortana buttons.

Toshiba fits a miniature keyboard that we found too small for relaxed use with our large hands, yet wastes open space either side of the keyboard. The buttonless trackpad has a brushed finish to match the case and lacks decent control precision.

Radius 12 P20W-C-106 review

The Radius stayed cool in use although its rattling multi-speed fan is annoying, frequently revving up and down and up and down as the laptop’s put to work. Much sponsored software is loaded, including Toshiba’s familiar kickback partner WinZip with 500MB of nagging bloatware that removes easy access to Windows’ own built-in unzipping tool.

Toshiba Satellite Radius 12 review: Performance

A 2.5GHz Core i7-6500U provides dual-core processing, incorporating Intel HD Graphics 520 for the UHD display. This is joined by 8GB of fixed 1600MHz memory, while a Samsung PM871 M.2 SATA SSD gives fast storage.

PCMark 8 Home appreciated the above collection, awarding 2330 and 2735 points respectively for conventional and GPU-accelerated workloads. Focusing on just CPU and memory, Geekbench scored one core with 3227 points, and two cores 6833 points – sterling results.

Graphics were a mixed bag. Tomb Raider ran smoother than the Asus ZenBook UX303UA, reviewed, using the same chip (47 vs 38fps, 720p and Normal detail). Full-HD gameplay was just possible (34fps) albeit in Low detail.

The Radius struggled to complete the Batman: Arkham Asylum though, pausing in the same place mid-game each run, returning a 38fps average at 720p and Medium detail, behind the ZenBook’s 45fps.

Screen measurement echoed the subjective good impression, with 800:1 contrast ratio, if slightly reduced 90-percent sRGB colour coverage. Thankfully flicker-free, the display is - as you'd expect from a touchscreen - glossy and too reflective for relaxed use in bright lighting.

The 40Wh fixed battery let the Radius run for just 5 hr 21 min in the streaming video rundown, far short of the best; even the similar-spec ZenBook ran around 50 percent longer.   

Toshiba Satellite Radius 12 P20W-C-106: Specs

  • 12.5-inch (3840 x 2160) 352ppi IPS gloss touchscreen
  • Windows 10 Home
  • 2.5GHz Intel Core i7-6500U (3.1GHz Turbo) 2C, 4T
  • Intel HD Graphics 520
  • 8GB 1600MHz LPDDR3 RAM
  • 256GB M.2 SATA SSD (Samsung PM871)
  • 802.11ac dual-band 2x2 (Intel Wireless-AC 7265)
  • Bluetooth 4.0
  • 1x USB 3.1 Type C Gen 2, 2x USB 3.0
  • HDMI
  • SDXC card slot
  • stereo speakers
  • 0.9Mp webcam
  • dual mic array
  • 3.5 mm headset jack
  • UK miniature tiled keyboard with white backlight
  • buttonless trackpad, 105 x 59mm
  • 40Wh lithium-ion battery, non-removable
  • 45W mains charger with IEC C6 inlet
  • 299 x 209 x 16mm
  • 1312g
  • 12.5-inch (3840 x 2160) 352ppi IPS gloss touchscreen
  • Windows 10 Home
  • 2.5GHz Intel Core i7-6500U (3.1GHz Turbo) 2C, 4T
  • Intel HD Graphics 520
  • 8GB 1600MHz LPDDR3 RAM
  • 256GB M.2 SATA SSD (Samsung PM871)
  • 802.11ac dual-band 2x2 (Intel Wireless-AC 7265)
  • Bluetooth 4.0
  • 1x USB 3.1 Type C Gen 2, 2x USB 3.0
  • HDMI
  • SDXC card slot
  • stereo speakers
  • 0.9Mp webcam
  • dual mic array
  • 3.5 mm headset jack
  • UK miniature tiled keyboard with white backlight
  • buttonless trackpad, 105 x 59mm
  • 40Wh lithium-ion battery, non-removable
  • 45W mains charger with IEC C6 inlet
  • 299 x 209 x 16mm
  • 1312g

OUR VERDICT

Bagging a 4K UHD display may seem impressive but here is wasted on a little ultrabook. A small battery plus high-res touchscreen equals foreshortened runtime. The Radius is quick but annoying on too many levels. For a better overall experience, try the ZenBook UX303UA which is £100 cheaper.

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