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|The Tuesday Letter
Toshiba Satellite Pro 6100
Anyone looking to replace a bulky desktop with a feature-packed notebook would find the Toshiba Satellite Pro 6100 hard to ignore.
Toshiba notebooks have always been popular and the Satellite Pro 6100 with 1.8 GHz Intel Pentium 4-M processor should ensure their reliable reputation.
Unfortunately this is not the most convenient notebook I have carried around. It weighs 3.1 kg (with DVD) but the huge 15 inch TFT XGA (1024 x 768) display makes it worth it.
The screen is great for watching DVDs and the sound generated from the Yamaha 16 bit stereo combined with the built-in speakers is adequate for a small room.
The volume control on the side of the machine is a nice touch and easier to get to then the usual on-screen Windows slider controls.
The Satellite Pro 6100 comes with a 40 GB hard drive and 256 MB RAM. The DVD/CD-RW combo drive is removable and can be replaced with another module like a second battery pack.
Travelling users may find the second battery pack useful as the main battery only lasts for about 2 hours.
Toshiba stopped including floppy drives in their machines but supply an external USB floppy drive with the Satellite Pro 6100 which does have an SD (Secure Digital) slot so data can be exchanged with MP3 players, PDAs or digital cameras that use SD.
In addition to the V.90 56K modem and 10/100 Ethernet there is also support for integrated wireless networking via 802.11b or Bluetooth.
Technically, a few more Satellite Pro 1600s and a wireless hub is all it would take for a business to create a wireless LAN without the need to invest in cabling. But security would be another issue.
There are also 2 USB 1.1 ports, one PS/2 port, SVGA video port and two Type II PC card slots. Parallel, serial, infra red, and external monitor ports are also available.
Unfortunately I can't find a Firewire port, so anyone needing a portable video editing solution would need to look elsewhere.
Its a pity because the nVidia GeForce4 420GO graphics controller with 32 MB RAM is capable of running a lot more than just PowerPoint presentations.
The Satellite Pro 6100 is certainly not sluggish when using graphics programs like Adobe Photoshop or Macromedia Flash MX either and impressed me with its power to handle most business tasks.
Overall the notebook is not small measuring 33 cm x 29 cm x 4 cm and the keyboard is certainly not cramped. I never thought it possible for a notebook to be ergonomic but I found the Satellite Pro 6100 very comfortable to use.
Its portability and weight are ideally suited to those who prefer to take all their work home with them but unfortunately limited battery life and 2.5 hr recharge time will ensure it doesnt move very far from a power outlet.
The Satellite Pro comes with Windows XP Pro or 2000.
Two models are available and the price conscious could settle for the 1.6 GHz model for AU$4840.
Price AU$5610 incl GST
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