Toshiba Portege R700 laptop review
We love
Light, sturdy, with more ports than you thought possible
We hate
Exceedingly little
An absolutely delightful machine that can go head to head with even the hottest unibody MacBook
Launch Price
£From 629

The Toshiba Portege R700’s big selling point is just how much power it packs into such a slim shell. You can find out more about the performance in that section of our Toshiba Portege R700 review, but if you want to know how that shell shapes up, read on for our in depth Toshiba Portege R700 review: Build section and we’ll explain all.

Read the rest of our Toshiba Portege R700 laptop review
Toshiba Portege R700 laptop review
Toshiba Portege R700 laptop review: Performance and battery

From the moment you pull the Toshiba Portege R700 from its accompanying leather suitcase, you can tell it’s going to be a class act. There’s none of the plastic smudge of a cheap Fisher-Price netbook, and all of the class and business prowess of a Lenovo ThinkPad, and portability to match the MacBook Air and Acer Aspire Timeline X series.

Although you’ll be pleased with the aesthetic finish of the Toshiba Portege R700 (subtle plastic that appears to have a brushed metal finish), what you’ll come to appreciate most over time is its extreme portability. While at 25.7mm thick at its deepest point, the Toshiba Portege R700 isn’t going to fit inside a manilla envelope any time soon, it feels stunningly light for a 13.3-inch laptop – and considering the full power innards, that’s impressive.

The 1300×768 resolution display has respectable viewing angles, and we’re actually prefer the fact it isn’t an edge-to-edge job: we often find the glass on our MacBook Pro glinting back at us when working in a cafe rather than at a desk. The keyboard on the Toshiba Portege R700 isn’t the best one we’ve ever used on a laptop, but it’s still solid, which should be more than enough for a machine designed for Getting Things Done on the go.

The individual keys are well spaced, with just the right amount of give (though you can see the keyboard dip down in the middle on occasion), and there’s no number pad to the right wasting space – just the End key separates the large right shift key from the side, which should please touch typists. The trackpad on the Toshiba Portege R700 is a polished and effective affair meanwhile, with visible separation from the rest of the chassis, and a fingerprint reader between the two cursor keys, which have a very recognisable (and audible) depress so you know for sure when they’ve been hit.

How to choose: Best laptop

All this would be good and well on its own (A full power laptop that weighs 1.28kg), but what stuns us most about the Toshiba Portege R700 is that it doesn’t forsake ports in the process. Unlike a MacBook Air with one piddly USB 2.0 port, you have two, plus an eSATA connection that doubles up as one for powering your USB gadgets even when the Toshiba Portege R700 is powered off, and an SD card reader and both VGA and HDMI out for hooking up to a monitor or HDTV.

You’re spoiled for drives with the Toshiba Portege R700 too. Not only does it come with a pretty sizable 320GB hard drive as standard (Exchanged for a 128GB SSD on the top tier model), from the £770 model and up, you have the option of a DVD drive built in, which adds just 2mm in overall thickness and only 150g in weight in. For something so portable, this is a blessed relief, as so many laptop makers (MSI, Asus, Acer, we’re looking at you) have been trying to change the goalposts and persuade customers they don’t really need them in 13-inch slimline machines. But here, there’s no compromise.

Toshiba’s actually spoiled us with the Toshiba Portege R700. It looks the part, it plays the part, and best of all, it doesn’t weigh the part. While the size rules this machine out of acting as a home desktop replacement, for anyone who needs a laptop for portability rather than few wires, the Toshiba Portege R700 is top of the pile right now.

The Toshiba Portege R700 has made our best laptop and best PC laptop Top 5 lists, which is why we’ve given it our Recommended rosette. Check out more Top 5s here and find out more about how they work with our Top 5 guarantee.

Read the rest of our Toshiba Portege R700 laptop review
Toshiba Portege R700 laptop review
Toshiba Portege R700 laptop review: Performance and battery

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