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Laptops Reviews
15,670 Reviews

Toshiba NB305 review

£270.31 inc VAT

Manufacturer: Toshiba

Our Rating: We rate this 3.5 out of 5

The Toshiba NB305 is a slightly revised version of the company's award-winning Toshiba NB200 netbook

The Toshiba NB305 is a slightly revised version of the company's award-winning Toshiba NB200 netbook

‘Leading innovation’ is Toshiba’s marketing warcry for its new Toshiba NB300 and Toshiba NB305 netbooks. Unfortunately, as with every other netbook on the market, innovation is now becoming more conspicuous by its absence.

The Toshiba NB305 and NB300 replace the older Toshiba NB200. We liked the NB200 – it offered just the same specification as other netbooks of the day, but had a solid-feeling chassis, nice professional keyboard and sensibly placed large click buttons. It also offered one of the longest battery lives of netbooks at the time, at around 8.5 hours.

Both new Toshiba models are essentially the same, with the NB300 finished in gloss black and the Toshiba NB305 in textured white or brown. The casework is quite similar to the NB200, with rounded front edges a little sharper at the front, good click buttons and a generally stout build quality.

There’s the same predictable running gear as everyone else’s netbook, such as low-res 1024x600 screen, 1GB RAM, three USB 2.0 ports, an SD card slot and VGA-only video output. The hard drive is now 250GB, while the screen keeps its reflective-gloss glare coating.

Wireless facilities on the Toshiba NB305 have been upgraded to 11n, although the budget Atheros AR9285 card is not a full-speed MIMO solution, so network speed will be lower than with a true 802.11n network adaptor.

One of the USB ports supports Sleep-and-Charge, to power or charge a USB device when the Toshiba NB305 sleeps.

The overall weight is almost the same at 1.3kg. You have to look inside to find the main material difference – a newer Intel Atom N450 processor with on-board graphics controller.

This is indeed fractionally faster, since the Toshiba NB305 earned 33 points in WorldBench 6, where the NB200 finished with 30 points when running the same Windows 7 Starter operating system.

The battery is almost as generous at 61Wh energy capacity, and this combined with the slightly more efficient Intel chipset helped the Toshiba NB305 along to an outstanding run time of 11.5 hours (690 mins) in the MobileMark 2007 Productivity test.

But somehow the Toshiba NB305 has lost some of the stand-out quality of its predecessor. First the keyboard picks up the trendy Scrabble tiles – but small ones that feel very toy-like in action. The top deck of the opened netbook, along with the entire underside, is plastic sprayed with silver paint. And the tubular screen hinge has fake chrome trim along its length.

Rather than trading up the looks to the sophistication of real natural metals, it actually lends a cheaper feel to the entire netbook. And in a market glutted with plasticky netbooks, that’s enough to take some of the spotlight of this quite ordinary mini laptop.

NEST PAGE: Our expert verdict >>

Toshiba NB305-105 Expert Verdict »

Toshiba NB305-105 Scores 9.0 out of 10 based on 2 reviews
1.6GHz Intel Atom N450
667MHz FSB
512kB L2 cache
10.1in (1024 x 600) glossy LCD display
Microsoft Windows 7 Starter
160GB 2.5in SATA HDD
1GB DDR2 RAM
Intel 3150 integrated graphics
VGA
3 x USB 2.0
ethernet 10/100Mb/s
802.11b/g/n (non-MIMO)
Bluetooth 2.1
SD card reader
mic in, headphone out
built-in mic
webcam
61Whr 6-cell lithium-ion battery
266 x 192 x 24-36mm
1340g
  • Build Quality: We give this item 7 of 10 for build quality
  • Features: We give this item 7 of 10 for features
  • Value for Money: We give this item 7 of 10 for value for money
  • Overall: We give this item 7 of 10 overall

The Toshiba NB305 is an NB200 with further improved battery life and unexceptionally slow netbook-level performance. Aside from slipping in a new Atom chip and offering coloured textured finishes, Toshiba’s designers have only succeeded in making a good netbook feel cheaper by substituting tiny keyboard keys and adding a glitz paint finish.

  • Toshiba NB200 review

    Toshiba NB200

    The Toshiba NB200 is a conventional but worthy 10in Atom netbook.

  • Toshiba NB300 review

    Toshiba NB300

    The Toshiba NB300 is a 10in netbook with a slim frame, a long battery life and an advanced Sleep-and-Charge USB port.

  • Toshiba NB550D review

    Toshiba NB550D

    The Toshiba NB550D netbook is one of the very first to use the new AMD Fusion ‘APU’ processors. But will this Accelerated Processor Unit bring decent battery life to the notoriously ephemeral AMD processor line?

  • Toshiba NB100-11R review

    Toshiba NB100-11R

    Joining the throng of compact-and-affordable notebook PC makers is Toshiba, with its little Toshiba NB100-11R laptop.

  • Samsung NB30 review

    Samsung NB30

    The Samsung NB30 is a template 10.1in screen Atom netbook with a non-slip case finish.


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