Application and Futuremark Performance

To be perfectly honest, while benchmarking the Toshiba Portege Z835, I felt pretty underwhelmed. While the SSD makes day to day use feel snappy enough, this is the first time in a while that I've watched an Intel processor just slog through CPU-limited tests. The 1.4GHz nominal clock of the processor wouldn't seem so bad if it could turbo, but as a Core i3 you're basically stuck there, and no amount of Hyper-Threading really mitigates that. So while you'll see the Z835 perform reasonably well in the PCMarks, once we get to the more CPU-limited tasks you'll see it falter.

PCMark 7 - PCMarks

PCMark 7 - Lightweight

PCMark 7 - Productivity

PCMark 7 - Entertainment

PCMark 7 - Creativity

PCMark 7 - Computation

PCMark 7 - Storage

Futuremark PCMark Vantage

The SSD in the Z830 helps it tremendously, but the other ultrabook in our lineup, ASUS's Zenbook UX21, just spanks it relentlessly due to the faster processor. ASUS's Zenbook also benefits from a 6Gbps interface on the SSD and the hardware to use it; even though the Zenbooks use different SSDs, both of them are easily two to three times faster than the one included in the Z830. While it's a notable improvement over a mechanical drive, there's no denying the Z830's SSD is pokey compared to the competition.

You'll notice that the Z830 seems to do well in PCMark Vantage, though, but that's not the whole story. SSDs have a tendency to grossly inflate these scores, so it's telling that the massive inflation from the Z830's SSD only brings its PCMark Vantage score in line with normal notebooks.

Cinebench R10 - Single-Threaded Benchmark

Cinebench R10 - Multi-Threaded Benchmark

Cinebench R11.5 - Multi-Threaded Benchmark

x264 HD Benchmark - First Pass

x264 HD Benchmark - Second Pass

While the Portege Z830's i3 runs wild on the netbook CPUs (proving there's still a substantial gap in performance there), it gets absolutely murdered by everything else. Even the fairly anemic Husky cores in the Llano A8 run roughshod over the 1.4GHz i3. The loss of turbo severely curtails the i3.

Futuremark 3DMark Vantage

Futuremark 3DMark06

If you weren't clear on all the gaming you're not supposed to do on the Portege Z830, 3DMark should seal the deal. While Intel is generous enough to include the superior HD 3000 graphics in the i3-2367M, it's still inadequate for gaming at anything above minimum detail: processor power is just barely there, and the HD 3000 remains a ways behind even low-end dedicated options as a result.

The Toshiba Portege Z835 is No Sliver Queen Battery Life, Heat, and Noise
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  • retrospooty - Wednesday, November 16, 2011 - link

    "How about 1680x1050, laptop makers :3"

    Yup, my old 15 inch Lenovo T500 w/ 1680x1050 was perfect.

    Sadly, the highest sellers now are these cheap 1366x768 ones, so they keep pushing it. Laptop makers wont stop unless sales drive it. Right now they are selling to the dull masses and it's not about to change.

    At least the ASUS Ultrabook has a 1600x900 option. Pretty good for a 13 incher.
    Reply
  • gorash - Wednesday, November 16, 2011 - link

    It's an ultrabook, they'd have to make it at a certain price point (under $1000). Reply
  • name99 - Thursday, November 17, 2011 - link

    "Why are all ultrabook makers idiots?"
    The answer is simple --- but PC heads don't want to hear it.
    As long as buyers AND sellers insist on selling by specs, they are in a commodity market. A market where the device sold is the one that hits the lowest price. These devices are sold by
    - has USB3 --- check
    - has ethernet port --- check
    - can (in theory) expand to more than 4GiB of RAM --- check.

    There's nowhere on that checklist for --- feel of the construction, quality of the keyboard, quality of the screen, delight of the user experience. No place for anything that is not a yes/no answer.
    As long as the PC world buys devices by checkbox criteria, vendors will sell devices by checkbox criteria --- it's as simple as that. If you want out of that world, I'm sorry, but your choice, today is simple --- you buy Apple and you accept the choices Apple makes. You may find your checkbox ethos upset --- what do you mean, no USB3 and no VGA port? You may whine that the price is "too high" for all the checkbox items you are getting --- ignoring the cost and the value of the non-checkbox items you are getting.
    But really, that's the breaks. You cannot expect differently from any other vendor, because that's not the way the economics works. And pretty much none of them have the credibility to insist that: "no, trust us, sure our new product costs 30% more than the competition, when compared by specs, but it really is worth the extra money". Sony certainly can't make such an argument credibly these days. The only possibility I can think of is that maybe Lenovo could.
    But, look at the comments in previous Anand reviews. If Lenovo introduced a really well made ultrabook, selling at Apple prices, I guarantee you MOST of the reviews would be along the lines of: "this is bullshit --- I can get exactly the same features from Toshiba for $300 cheaper. Lenovo screws over the public once again".
    Reply
  • Visual - Wednesday, November 16, 2011 - link

    Now all I want is for someone to take this thing, give it a better quality display with adequate resolution, nice multitouch layer with active digitizer, make it convertible to tablet mode, with a few programmable buttons on the bezel, and I would be willing to pay double this price.
    Are all those things actually costing the manufacturer more than that? Or why else is noone doing that?

    Add in a better GPU option without massively increasing weight (battery drain won't matter if it can switch back to the IGP, but the cooling should be adequate) and I'd be the happiest person in the world.
    Reply
  • solnyshok - Wednesday, November 16, 2011 - link

    Screen flex is so extreme, that me Toshiba have developed 2 cracks (one on left, one right side) in the inner plastic frame around the lcd panel. From the forums, I know that many owners have faced this problem, even those that handle device very carefully.

    Important consequence of this is, that despite low weight, Toshiba has almost killed portability of this device - I am afraid to just put it into my backpack or leave it in a luggage. The only way to handle it is to have a well protected bag and keep it on yourself at all times.

    Lastly, did you check this Toshiba, or any other ultrabooks, if they use throttling to prevent overheating? My R630 came with i450m (2.4GHz, turbo to 2.6), but only after couple of months I learned with the help of ThrottleStop, that whole thing is throttled to 50% of performane at all times. Removed it for AC profile, thing is twice faster now and still doesn't overheat.
    Reply
  • e-kirill - Wednesday, November 16, 2011 - link

    SSD here is crap also Reply
  • Filiprino - Wednesday, November 16, 2011 - link

    I won't buy a shitty 768p screen. Reply
  • solnyshok - Wednesday, November 16, 2011 - link

    and the screen is awful on R630 (guess it is the same). C'mon Toshiba, I will not be buying another one of the R series with such awful screen and flimsy shell. Reply
  • ibtar - Wednesday, November 16, 2011 - link

    There must be some kind of running joke between OEMs about how cheap they can go on these garbage TN panels they throw in these "ultra" books and other laptops until consumers actually start to care (they won't).

    Just give me an IPS panel. I don't care if it's glossy or matte, just give me something that has decent contrast and doesn't gamma shift all over the damn place. Is that so much to ask?
    Reply
  • jackpro - Wednesday, November 16, 2011 - link

    The screen resolution needs to be higher. I am sick of scrolling web pages. Please get a clue. Thats why tablets are growing market share, web pages are easier to read duh! Are we not in the web age??? Reply

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