Toshiba Satellite A660-14C review
Middling performance, but supplying a Blu-ray drive and such a striking screen at this price is an impressive feat
Review Date: 9 Nov 2010
Reviewed By: David Bayon
Price when reviewed: £528 (£620 inc VAT)
Features & Design
Value for Money
The Toshiba Satellite A660 is one of a rare breed: it squeezes a Blu-ray drive into a very tight budget of little more than £500. That’s impressive enough, but it also features a 16in display up top.
The design is a bit edgier than many Satellites, with a mix of smooth outer edges and rough surfaces. It has a few lights too, giving an overall look that’s unmistakably enthusiast.
That 16in TFT may be a minor upgrade, especially as the resolution is still 1,366 x 768, but it packs a punch and has good viewing angles. Our one gripe is its very reflective coating, but as long as you’re using it under soft home lighting it won’t be too distracting. The speakers are loud and offer a fair amount of bass, and there’s a 1.3-megapixel webcam and microphone.
The chassis feel particularly strong, with a solid hinge and barely any give to the lid. The rigid keyboard backing makes for a firm typing style on the Scrabble-tile keys, and the touchpad has a dry finish to it that makes it surprisingly pleasant to use. There’s a good selection of ports too: three USB 2 and one eSATA/USB 2 combo, plus an ExpressCard/34 slot and another for memory cards.
The A660’s internals are less impressive. The 2.13GHz Core i3-330M, 4GB of DDR3 and 500GB hard disk pushed it to 1.26 in our benchmarks, and the Nvidia GeForce 310M averaged 36fps in Crysis at Low settings. The A660 is plenty quick enough to play Blu-rays, but it’s by no means as powerful as its image suggests. It also won’t last long on the road either, managing just 3hrs 27mins in our light-use battery test.
It’s evident that the cost of the Blu-ray drive has an impact on the rest of the core components, so for performance there are better options. But if it’s features you want, the Satellite A660-14C is certainly a strong budget entertainment choice.
Author: David Bayon
the chassis design is not the best
my brother bought a Sat Pro with the same chassis. he managed to get a CD inside the notebook above the optical drive as there is a huge gap between the top of the drive and the notebook casing. I had to remove the drive to get it out for him
By mr_chips on 10 Nov 2010
- EU warns Nokia not to become a "patent troll"
- Police knock out 40 sites accused of piracy
- Government broadband chief defends fibre rollout
- Samsung launches 1TB SSD for Ultrabooks and tablets
- Fibre sells out within hours in area BT said "wasn't commercially viable"
- iBeacon: Apple finds a new way to annoy shoppers via their iPhones
- Top tech firms tell Obama: surveillance has gone too far
- Second NatWest outage in a week after DDoS attack
- Ex-Microsoft exec Paul Maritz "too old" to do Ballmer's job
- Microsoft patches TIFF flaw in next Patch Tuesday
- Switching from iPhone to Android: what I miss, what I don't
- Tech City: Easy to score when you move the goalposts
- How to remove SkyDrive from the Windows 8.1 Explorer
- Switching from iPhone to Android? Switch off iMessage
- Why is Google pumping more money into Firefox?
- Sky Broadband Shield review
- Samsung Galaxy S4: how to double your battery life
- Motorola Moto G review: first look
- IBM Watson meets Willy Wonka
- Google’s support policies shove users towards Chrome
- Closer to reality: photorealism in computer graphics
- Windows 8.1: Top 10 advanced features
- Securing the Internet of Things
- Internet of Things: five unlikely hacking risks
- Life behind the wall: censorship in China
- 42 best Android apps
- 3D museums that never close
- 29 best Windows 8.1 apps
- Bring an old PC up to speed
- My PC is infected: what now?
- The importance of load balancing
- Windows Phone App Studio: an easy way to create your first Windows Phone 8 app
- The end of Windows XP support: what it really means for businesses
- Don't rely on Chrome's password vault
- Using Buffer to manage your social media
- Microsoft needs its own Steve Jobs
- Forget credit cards: hackers want your Facebook account
- Can't get fast enough broadband? Here's what to do
- Leap Motion and the battle against UI stagnation
- How to build a really bad network
There are dozens of exciting prizes up for grabs on PC Pro Competitions. All our competitions are free to enter. Try your luck.ENTER NOW