Event Coverage

Toshiba Portege Z830 Singapore Launch - Portability Extreme

By Leo Boon Yeow - 11 Nov 2011

Toshiba Portege Z830 Singapore Launch - Portability Extreme

Corporate Class Ultrabook and More!

First of all, we'd like to thank Toshiba for arranging such an entertaining press event. There's a small skit about a secretary buying some new Toshiba products both for herself, and for her hapless boss. Introduced in the skit, were the Toshiba Regza AT1S0, and new 7-inch Android tablet that fits well into a lady's hands, the Regza AT100, another Android tablet that has a 10.1-inch screen as well as a plethora of connectivity options. There was also the Qosmio DX730, a fairly powerful all-in-one desktop with some good mobile components, such as a quad core i7 (or dual-core i5), mobile graphics and all the usual connectivity options.

Only the most competent secretaries will spend company funds to get themselves and their bosses the latest gadgets available in the market.

The Toshiba Regza AT1S0 is a 7-inch Android Honeycomb tablet that is small and light enough for women to enjoy their media, and the dual-core processor is powerful enough for almost anyone else.

The dual-core AT100 is a 10.1-inch Android tablet that has all the connectivity options that a hands-on boss would need while at the office. It's been available for a while now, but Toshiba took the opportunity to remind us that it's there.

Toshiba's Qosmio DX730 is a new all-in-one PC with mobile guts, but powerful enough for corporate environment computing, and if you get it for your home, you can even play some casual games with its built-in mobile GPU, the NVIDIA GeForce GT 540M.

Toshiba's opening speech is centered around the digitization of conventional media, and how important it is to have to right device for your style of media consumption.

But the star of the show must be the much awaited Toshiba Portege Z830. Toshiba touts this 13-incher as the thinnest (15.9mm) and lightest (1.12kg) Ultrabook out in the market right now. The machine is lavishly encased in magnesium alloy (since we know who already monopolized aluminum) that Toshiba claims can withstand almost 100KG or pure pressure, or as the skit humorously puts it, the bottom of your very fat boss.

There you have it. The thinnest and lightest Ultrabook out in the market right now. It is encased in a tough magnesium alloy body and comes with all the ports you need, as well as security features suitable for enterprise use.


Not content with just using magnesium alloy as the casing material, Toshiba also slid in a magnesium honeycomb structure that further enhances the machine's strength and durability.

We've had a very brief hands-on with the product and it was indeed very well put together. Tight integration of components means the machine is really as thin as it can get. While other manufacturers like to brag about their thinnest point, Toshiba chose to use the thickest point as a comparison. It was a svelte 15.9mm at its thickest point. A figure which other Ultrabooks in the market simply can't match now.

We've had a look at it, and we must admit that it is incredibly thin, and light enough to easily maneuver using only one hand.

We also managed to bang on the keyboard of the unit for a short period while no one was looking, and we were convinced that it was very comfortable to type on indeed. The island-style keys are robust and still gives you that nice tactile feel. Keys were placed as far apart as they could have been, and we have no complaints about them whatsoever. Even the housing on which the keys sit on is pretty tightly fitted on, meaning there isn't any noticeable flex.

The island-style keys on the Z830 are a pleasure to use, even though the machine itself is extremely thin, the keys don't feel overly shallow at all.

However we were quite undecided with the trackpad. While it wasn't flawed in any way, it deviates from what we have come to accept as the new standard -- large, clickable, glass-covered trackpads. Toshiba instead opted for a regular trackpad with normal buttons instead. We were puzzled at first, but upon closer inspection and a bit of open-mindedness as you'd expect from tech writers, we realized why Toshiba did this. Having a regular trackpad means Toshiba can chuck a fingerprint reader in the middle of the buttons, like what they usually do.

The trackpad is the one part that leaves us undecided about the Z830. We'd like to have large trackpads, but enterprises that are slow to adopt new and exciting technology will be more comfortable with a more conventional trackpad.

So what does a fingerprint reader mean? Well it simply means that the world's thinnest and lightest Ultrabook is ready for enterprise deployment. Smart move. Companies that are nearing the end of their refresh cycle can take a serious gander at the Toshiba Portege Z830. So there you have it. We think it's a smart move on Toshiba's part, but it doesn't mean we like having a tiny trackpad on our Ultrabooks. But of course you can't win them all.

All of the ports you need, like HDMI, VGA, USB ports can be found on the back of the machine.

We're expecting the Portege Z830 to reach us sometime in the third week of November. And once it does, you can be sure we will put the Z830 through a thorough round of benchmark tests. Not to mention, some durability tests too. And the moment we find out how capable of a machine it is, you will as well.

The super slim Toshiba Portege Z830 will be in our labs pretty soon, and once we put it through thorough testing, we'll let you know how it fares against other Ultrabooks of the same class.

The Toshiba Portege Z830 comes with a 13-inch screen that is of the standard 1366 x 768 pixels resolution. It's quite a letdown because premium pricing should command premium components. But it's still pretty, no?

If you're impatiently waiting to hold one these beauties right now without waiting for our verdict, you can grab the Core i5, 128GB SSD version for S$1999, or the Core i7, 256GB SSD variant for about S$2599. While we can't say we're thrilled about the price, we've come to expect premium prices for Toshiba's products. In the case of the Z830, at least the sturdy and strong build of the notebook with business-class features and ultra thin form factors are probably enough reasons to justify its pricing. Meanwhile, the Toshiba DX730 AIO machine starts from S$1549 for the Core i5 processor edition, and S$1999 for the Core i7 processor edition. The 7-inch AT1S0 Android-based tablet is going for S$799 while the older and bigger 10.1-inch AT100 will be going for an affordable S$699.

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