First Looks: Toshiba Satellite M100

A Versatile Satellite

A Versatile Satellite

In order to capture a large audience, companies are rolling out ever more fancy notebooks. With the design of notebooks as varied as that of mobile phones, consumers these days are really spoilt for choice for notebooks that would match their personality and style. Increasingly, the notebook one carries has a lot to say about one's fashion sense. Knowing consumers are almost always highly selective, Toshiba has come up with the new Satelite M100. Here is a notebook with appealing curves, a chic design and a specification list that does not shortchange consumers for their investment dollars. It should provide you with a little of everything.

Of Functionality and Design

The M100 is noticeably distinct by its turquoise lid, which is a welcome stray from the traditional black and grey color preferences. The rounded corners and its sleek profile come together nicely to give the M100 a modern look that should earn it keen interests from image conscious consumers. Boasting an RGB output port, a S-video port, an IEEE-1394 port, a 5-in-1 card reader, a PC Card slot, an RJ-45 LAN port, an RJ-11 modem port, and four USB ports means the M100 is not lacking in terms of connectivity. Users will also find a switch for Bluetooth and Wireless LAN, a microphone and headphone port, and a volume control dial up front. The volume dial may be a little dated in this day and age but it is still a welcome addition nevertheless. At the very least, volume adjustment is easy.

At the visual end is a large 14.1-inch LCD screen. Southward is a well-spaced keyboard that is very responsive and comfortable to type on. The M100’s touchpad and buttons are a little on the small side but are no less responsive. Seven buttons can be found near the foot of the screen that offer quick access to customizable functions such as your preferred web browser, email client, media player and etc. Also in the vicinity is a pair of harman/kardon speakers that Toshiba has thrown in make the M100 stand out even more, especially to those who enjoy playing online Java games.

A Taste of Everything

Be it for light gaming or office applications, the M100 is all ready to satisfy. Understandably so granted its processing power is provided by an Intel Core 2 Duo T5500 clocked at 1.66GHz and paired to an ATI Mobility Radeon X1300. When used as a multimedia platform, the screen of the M100 quickly showed its brilliance which coupled with the speakers made watching DVD movies a pleasant experience.

Hardware aside, the M100 is installed with a suite of software to make life easier for you. At the heart of this is Toshiba Assist, a group of functions designed to help you configure your network, setup security measures, fix your notebook and even optimize your computer. Another useful feature is Toshiba’s Touch and Launch, which as its name implies provides shortcut functionality in conjunction with a single touch of the touchpad. As soon as a user rests his finger on any of the four corners of the touchpad, a window will pop up to show a host of tasks or programs, depending on the way you configure it.

The Toshiba Satellite M100 recorded a score of 3708 in PCMark05, 3848 in 3DMark03 (1024x768 No AA/AF), and a score of 221 in MobileMark 2002. While we can say that the M100 is a speedy notebook to get things done, we recommend users to purchase an extra battery or lug their AC adapter along. This is because the bundled battery pack only lasted 110 minutes, which was not enough to power through our DVD movie test to completion.

Final Thoughts

If you are seriously looking for a hassle-free notebook that can do it all, the Toshiba’s Satellite M100 is not one to be ignored. This fancy looker will be whatever you want it to be: a workstation, a gaming rig for LAN parties and also the family’s entertainment machine. At 2.26kg, it's travel friendly as well.