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When first buying this laptop I was expecting big things, it was going to cost me nearly 400 pounds,so I thought it would be a good performer and buying a well known brand such as Toshiba, it would be a reliable bit of technology that wouldn't cause me any hassle! How wrong I was! It was dodgy from the word go and within a few months was becoming really slow and took ages to browse the Internet or play games. I forked out to fix it but then the same thing happened again six months after, it is just a really poorly made laptop and i hav e been so disappointed with it, I may have just been sold a bad one but I think there are many other cheaper laptops which will last you longer than this one, I complained to Toshiba and got a different one but this particular model should be avoided.
The Toshiba Equium A200 has been my mine laptop of use within the past few years and has been a very loyal and stylish servant to me with no overt issues concerning it's functionality, design or life span.
It's always struck me as aesthetically pleasing with it's blackened shell and silver keyboard and touchpad core supporting a 15.4 inch screen and blue lights along the bottom of the keyboard, indicating whether the laptop is plugged in, powered on, running off the battery and whether the processor is in action.
The keys are elegantly slender and positioned close to the pressure pad so tapping the keys requires the gentlest of touches, alongside a sensitive touchpad which means if you need to spend hours a day on it you won't be coming away with blisters on your fingers.
There's also shortcut buttons above the keyboard to help the user easily power off, put to sleep or hibernate the laptop, open a new internet browser or give the user quick access to open the media player and play tracks with ease. The sound also funnels out of two circular ports either side of these buttons and emits a high quality sound which can be enjoyed when listening to music, watching videos or just generally using audio when the laptop is functioning.
The DVD/RW/CD drive is also very slick and efficient in it's opening and input of discs and I've never encountered problems with it's running that wasn't because of a physical error with the disc which was inserted in. There's also 4 usb ports for multiple hardware linkup options, a headphones and microphone port, ethernet port and spare monitor port if needed. The lid also closes and clicks down with ease.
The power plug is situated on the right hand side just above the DVD/RW/CD drive and slots in with ease and has a sufficient grip once inserted so it can't be easily pulled out by mistake.
The one gripe I had with this laptop which is also a mainstay for many laptops is that I wasn't able to use the battery for longer than a period of around six months. One day I went to turn on the laptop and it wouldn't turn on as the battery had died and was blocking the power supply and thus had to be pulled out so I could go on to power up the laptop by the mains.
I think that's a pretty short lifespan for a battery but I personally never had much of a need to use my laptop through travel and also for people nowadays, as opposed to 4 years ago when I received the laptop, internet smartphones are far more common and practical to use instead of having to lug around a big laptop to do simple tasks online.
Overall I'd definitely recommend this for people nowadays to use. It's not as wafer thin and feather light as the state of the art laptops of today but it's still fairly slim and only about 2 kilos in weight. I paid roughly £500 for it 4 years ago but today you can certainly pick one up for around £100 second hand and given that the technology of laptops hasn't progressed that far ahead in the last 3 years or so you can do a lot worse than this. I'm certainly going to carry on with mine for the next 2 or maybe 3 years pending how advanced new laptops evolve to.
I'm not very technical minded so have no idea what all of the numbers and letters in the specifications so I've just put them at the end of the review for anyone who wants to know. The rest is based on my experience using my laptop.
This was my first and only laptop which was a generous gift from my parents around 5 years ago. I have used other laptops since, but am so used to my own that I just don't like using others. This is something I will have to get out of as this laptop will need replacing soon.
First impressions count
When I first saw my shiny new laptop, I was impressed. The lid is shiny and black with the word Toshiba written across it. The shiny black finish looks smart but really shows up fingerprints so I found myself polishing the lid like a prized trophy.
When I open up my laptop there is a 15.4 inch screen which is easy to see and great for playing games on. There are 7 black buttons which are for power and shortcuts for the internet and to skip through music and dvds with a play, pause, stop, forward and back buttons. Other than the power button I have made very little use of the others, they are sensitive and easy to accidentally push if I'm wiping the laptop.
Speakers sound quality
The keyboard and touchpad are set on a matt silver surrounding grey keys. There are two mouse buttons, the left of these has almost completely worn down to the white plastic, the left is still a shimmery silver. The keys have very little sign of wear and I have done a lot of typing on this laptop.
When I first got the laptop I was in the middle of a college course which required a lot of word processed coursework. At first I found typing a bit of a nightmare as I kept accidentally brushing my hand off the touchpad and moving the cursor to a different area of the screen. I did get used to avoiding this pretty quickly though and now it isn't an issue but I do think if this laptop could be designed with the touchpad to one side rather than central it would make like easier but it seems most laptops are designed this way.
The keys can be removed for cleaning but it is extremely fiddly and hard to get them back on so I tried it once and wouldn't try again.
The laptop doesn't have a seperate number keypad but there is the ability to turn it on so some of your letters become a keypad. This didn't matter to me but would've been a bit of a problem in my previous job which involved inputting a lot of numbers.
There is a built in cd/dvd rewriter which I think comes with most laptops these days. I've used it once or twice and had no problem burning songs and videos from my laptop onto a cd or dvd. It's a lot more simple than I expected.
At the front of the laptop are some blue lights one which illuminates the word Equium and the others are little symbols representing the power and battery etc.
There is a button to slide along to turn the wi-fi on and off to pick up an internet connection of wirelessly connect it to a printer or device. The volume slider is also on the front along with holes to plug in headphones or a microphone.
To the left of the laptop are various slots to hook your laptop up to a phone line, televison, camera and other devices. There is a cd drive and on the right hand side as well as 2 USB ports and a hole for the charger.
The laptop runs on Windows Vista, this was my first experience of using this system but I find it really well laid out and easy to navigate.
The Issues with the laptop
Well first of all the battery life from the start wasn't good. I'd be lucky to get half an hour out of the laptop without needing to plug it in. After about 2 years the charger broke and after 3 years the battery went. By this stage my laptop was starting to get a bit sluggish and I felt it was ready to give up on me altogether at any time so instead of buying a new battery and charger I bought a universal charger which could also be used on a future laptop if needed. That was 2 years ago and the laptop is still hanging on for dear life. It has to be plugged in all the time while I'm using it and tends to turn itself off from time to time but not enough for me to want to fork out for a new one just yet.
The laptop with the charger is also heavier than I would have thought so it isn't really very practical for someone who wants to take their laptop around with them. For me, this isn't really an issue as I only ever had to carry it a short distance and now it stays at home.
I had about 2 years issue free with this laptop, as it was my first I haven't anything to compare it to and I'm not sure how long they tend to last. The following 3 years I've had a few problems, it's very slow now, probably due to all of the stuff I have on it although I've deleted as much as I can and tried defrag etc without improvement.
I think the laptop was quite expensive when it was bought but laptops have gone down in price quite a lot since then.
I really need a new laptop but am putting it off for as long as I can as I'm really quite attached to this one. For my next laptop I would definitely consider a Toshiba again, visually it's a really nice laptop and is easy to use. I think I'd rather have a large screen again but if I did want to use my laptop on the go I think I'd opt for a smaller, more lightweight laptop. Also the newer models, from what I've heard, seem to have a much better battery life.
I'll be sad to see this go, but it's nearly time!
Extra pieces available to buy for this laptop are different carry cases, a floppy disc drive, mouse, webcam, headphones, battery, charger and external memory drives.
The laptop comes with a theft registration form which you fill out with your details and model number along with a unique laptop number which is there if your laptop gets stolen it is a way of tracing your laptop. Luckily I never had mine stolen and didn't need to put this form to use.
THE TECHNICAL STUFF
From the Toshiba website:
Processor type : Intel® Pentium® Dual-Core Processor T2310
clock speed : 1.46 GHz
Front Side Bus : 533 MHz
2nd level cache : 1 MB
Operating System / Platform
Windows® Vista® Home Premium Edition
System memory standard : 2,048 (1,024 + 1,024) MB
maximum expandability : 2,048 MB
technology : DDR2 RAM (667 MHz)
Hard disk capacity : 120 GB
certification : S.M.A.R.T.
drive rotation : 5,400 rpm
Physical dimensions W x D x H : 362 x 267.8 x 33.5 (front) / 39.3 (rear) mm
weight : starting at 2.68 kg
Warranty 1-year international warranty.
This laptop cost around £600 when I got it, they are now discontinued but used models can be picked up on various websites. I saw a used model in a cash converter style store for £100 recently but I'd recommend testing them out before buying unless there's some kind of warranty.
i bought this laptop around 3 years ago and it is still in use. although it is no longer my main laptop is does the job of using simple programmes and surfing the web. when i first purchased the laptop, although it wasnt the most flash machine it still gave me the ability to play a number of games and use it to complete school work and research topics.
However the laptop now would be extremely dated when compared to other machines that are on the market. the keys feel slightly cheap and the general speed of the laptop is slow although i now have and acer aspire 5536 which has a much more impressive spec. the battery on the laptop lasted around 2 hours when new and has only just failed and now needs to be constantly plugged in although i find it impressive it has lasted this long.
this toshiba laptop is a durable, well built machine however it would be incredibly dated when compared to other laptops for sale today.
I have owned this laptop for two years and I have to say there is nothing that really woos you about it. When you get a new laptop you want to be amazed by some of the stuff that it can do and fiddle with it for hours. All I can say is that if you were to do that with this you would be bored in a matter of minutes. As a laptop itself it is ok to be used under normal circunstances, if you were needing a laptop for either gaming or hardcore work then do not buy this one. On the other hand, it is a useful entertainment PC with the Dolby Surround sound speakers and the overall viewing experience. In my opinion, it you are looking at this with a respect to buying it, I wouldn't. Firstly, it is out of date and hardly has any of the cool gadgets modern day machines do and also it is not worth the money in regards to performance.