Review Toshiba Satellite P70-A-104 Notebook

Sascha Mölck (translated by Vinay Pradhan), 11/15/2013

Premium Haswell. Full HD screen, Core i7 Haswell, GeForce GPU, Harman/Kardon sound system - appetizing. Can the Premium DTR deliver what it promises? Find out in the following review.

For the original German review, see here.

A model from the new Toshiba premium line for consumers, the Satellite-P70-A series, has made its way to our test table. This is not an entirely unfamiliar model to us as Toshiba had provided us with a pre-production model of the P70 for a test during the summer. We could not provide any benchmark results as the device did not have a finalized BIOS and Windows installation and even the workmanship was supposedly different from that of the final model. In this review, we intend to show how the differences between the pre-production and final model differ and how the P70 performs.

We use the Asus N750JV-T4110H (Core i7-4700HQ, GeForce GT 750M) and the Samsung ATIV Book 8 Touch 880Z5E X01 (Core i7-3635QM, Radeon HD 8870M) for comparison in this review. The latter is a 15.6-inch notebook.

The P70-A-104 is similar to the pre-production model in many ways, so we will skip the case, the input devices, the speakers and the connectivity. Information for these sections can be found in the pre-production review.

Case

The case has stayed the same, but the workmanship and sturdiness have changed. We liked both in the pre-production model and as such we can only praise the final model with its good workmanship and solid case (composed of various metal elements).

Connectivity

Communication

Our model has changed ever so slightly. Although, both the test model and the pre-production model use the same Gigabit Ethernet chip from Atheros (AR8161/8165) for wired connectivity, the WLAN module is different: the Atheros WLAN module has now been replaced by an Intel model (Centrino Wireless-N 2230). This module supports the WLAN standards 802.11 b/g/n as well as the Intel Wireless Display technology. This allows the user to build a connection between the laptop and an external display (with the right features). Bluetooth 4.0 is also found integrated onto the Intel chip.

The webcam has also changed. Toshiba uses a 2 MP in our test model: this allows the user to capture video in a resolution up to 1920x1080 pixels. Thanks to the high resolution, the videos are quite sharp, but in darker scenes, the picture is noticeably blurry.

Accessories

A manual ("Manual for working with your device securely and comfortably / Limited Warranty") is all that is included.

OS and Recovery

The Satellite comes with Windows 8 (64-bit) preinstalled. As mentioned above, a Windows DVD is not included. As such, we recommend the creation of a recovery DVD as soon as the laptop is started. Toshiba has installed the Toshiba Recovery Media Creator on the laptop for this exact reason. If you want to replace Windows 8 with Windows 7, you can: Toshiba provides drivers for Windows 7, 8 and 8.1 on their website.

Sleep and Music

In the BIOS of the Satellite, the user will find an option called "Sleep and Music". This option can be turned on/off (default off) and when turned on, the laptop speakers can be used to play music from external sources (like a smartphone or an mp3 player). The audio output jack of the external device needs to be connected to the microphone jack of the P70 for this functionality. This option can be used when the laptop is off, in standby or sleeping.

If the speakers do not work after activating this BIOS option, then the error lies in the software. The option for de-/activating the speakers can be found in the "Toshiba System Settings" tool on the laptop.

This is the option in the BIOS.
This is the option in the BIOS.

Maintenance

Opening the maintenance flap reveals the RAM, storage device, WLAN module and the BIOS battery. Sadly, we do not have any access to the fan and the case needs to be taken apart to get to it. However, the user can even replace the CPU as it is not soldered onto the motherboard, but instead sits in a socket.

The Satellite is equipped with 4 RAM slots, two of which are occupied by 4 GB modules. This is different from the pre-production model as there we only had 4 GB (2x 2 GB) RAM on-board and the user could not access these directly. The other two RAM slots are empty and can be accessed via the maintenance flap. The Toshiba website states that the laptop can support up to 32 GB of RAM.

Switching the storage device should not be a problem: the Satellite accepts 2.5-inch drives with a build height of 7 - 9.5 mm. Furthermore, the notebook scores thanks to its secondary storage device slot. This presents the user with the option of installing a Solid State Drive in the notebook and installing Windows on it. If the SSD is used as the system drive, then the user can boost the system performance by quite a large amount. SSDs with a capacity of 120 GB are more than enough and are currently available for less than 100 Euros (~$135, see Samsung 840 Basic). The preinstalled HDD can be used for storage and the user can boot from either slot.

Warranty

The Satellite includes 24 months warranty - including pick-up service. The pick-up service is only applicable in certain countries. The Asus and Ativ Book models also offer 2 year warranties. Warranty extensions are also available for the Satellite: a 3 year on-site warranty will set the buyer back around 90 - 100 Euros (~$121 - ~$135).

Display

Toshiba installs a glossy 17.3-inch display from AU Optronics in our model. The screen supports Full HD resolution (1920x1080 pixels) and is the same one as in the pre-production model. However, the average brightness of our panel is higher: 318.9 cd/m². This is not unusual as manufacturers like to leave some breathing space when it comes to brightness. The N750JV (306.4 cd/m²) is duller than our test model but offers a matte IPS panel. The Ativ Book (242.7 cd/m²) cannot compete.

291
cd/m²
292
cd/m²
278
cd/m²
333
cd/m²
346
cd/m²
307
cd/m²
342
cd/m²
363
cd/m²
318
cd/m²
Distribution of brightness
Information
X-Rite i1Pro 2
Maximum: 363 cd/m²
Average: 318.9 cd/m²
Brightness Distribution: 77 %
Center on Battery: 162 cd/m²
Black: 0.48 cd/m²
Contrast: 721:1
Satellite P70 vs. sRGB
Satellite P70 vs. sRGB
Satellite P70 vs. AdobeRGB
Satellite P70 vs. AdobeRGB

Contrast (721:1) and black value (0.48 cd/²) of the display are quite good. These values are better than those of the N750JV (637:1, 0.52 cd/m²). However, the Ativ Book has the best values as it is equipped with an IPS panel: 1017:1 and 0.24 cd/m². The P70 screen cannot cover the sRGB or AdobeRGB color spectrums, but it manages to cover 79% of the sRGB space and about 58% of the AdobeRGB space. These color spaces are important for picture editing.

We tested a screen with factory settings (target color space: sRGB) and could measure an average DeltaE-2000 deviation of about 9 points. Only two colors manage to reach the target area (DeltaE smaller than 5). In addition, the display is tinted blue. As the panel is still the same as that of the pre-production model, the color deviations remain identical. After calibration, the pre-production model could provide much more accurate colors, dropping the average DeltaE-2000 deviation down to 3.6 and the blue tinge disappears. The test model should present the same behavior.

CalMAN - ColorChecker
CalMAN - ColorChecker
CalMAN - Gray Levels
CalMAN - Gray Levels
CalMAN - Color Saturation
CalMAN - Color Saturation

As shown by our photo, the display can be clearly read outdoors. However, it is quite annoying to get distracting reflections on the glossy screen.

Toshiba has not chosen an IPS panel for the Satellite which means that users will have to adjust to the (relatively) poor viewing angles of a TN panel. For this price, it is possible to fit in an IPS panel, as shown by the Ativ Book. Still, the panel of the Satellite is one of the better TN panels. The vertical viewing angles are much larger than in standard TN panels which can be found in cheaper notebooks. However, looking from below will cause colors to falsify. Horizontally, the display is legible even at wide viewing angles and the brightness drops slightly.

Outdoors with the Satellite.
Outdoors with the Satellite.
Viewing angles - Satellite P70-A-104
Viewing angles - Satellite P70-A-104

Performance

Toshiba offers DTR notebooks for premium consumers in the Satellite-P70-A series. As such, the models perform great with everyday tasks, which includes 3D gaming or video editing. Our test model is priced at 1,150 Euros (~$1554) and a second configuration is also available: the Satellite P70-A-10P comes with 16 GB RAM, a 256 GB SSD, a 1.5 TB HDD and more VRAM for the graphics card (4,096 MB). This configuration will drive the price up to 1,600 Euros (~$2163). If you want the same hardware in a smaller form factor, you should take a look at the 15.6-inch Satellite P50-A. For more information take a look at this review: Satellite P50-A-11L (Core i7-4700MQ, GeForce GT 745M).

CPU-Z
CPU-Z
CPU-Z
CPU-Z
CPU-Z
GPU-Z
GPU-Z
HWInfo
System information - Toshiba Satellite P70-A-104

Processor

As in the pre-production model, the Satellite uses a Core i7-4700MQ quad-core processor of the Haswell generation. The CPU operates at a base clock speed of 2.4 GHz and Turbo can increase this up to 3.2 GHz (all 4 cores). 3.3 GHz (2 cores) and 3.4 GHz (single core) are also possible. Its direct Ivy Bridge predecessors are called the Core i7-3630QM and the Core i7-3635QM (the latter has a slightly faster IGP). The Core i7-4700MQ should be about 10% faster thanks to the improvements brought by the Haswell generation. The TDP of our CPU is 47 W, which is 2 watts higher than its predecessor.

The single thread tests of Cinebench are finished by the CPU at 3.2 - 3.3 GHz, while the multi-thread tests are performed at 3.2 GHz. Surprisingly, the scores are better than those of the N750JV (Core i7-4700HQ, GeForce GT 750M), which is equipped with (practically) the same CPU. The CPU of the Asus model does not make the most of its Turbo, which results in the scores of the N750JV being at the same level as those of the Ativ Book (Core i7-3635QM, Radeon HD 8870M), which uses an Ivy Bridge CPU. The GL tests go in favor of the Ativ Book as it has the strongest GPU.

Cinebench R10 Rendering Single CPUs 64Bit
6651 Points
Cinebench R10 Shading 64Bit
6713 Points
Cinebench R10 Rendering Multiple CPUs 64Bit
24578 Points
Cinebench R10 Rendering Single 32Bit
4955
Cinebench R10 Rendering Multiple CPUs 32Bit
19165
Cinebench R10 Shading 32Bit
6750
Cinebench R11.5 CPU Single 64Bit
1.5 Points
Cinebench R11.5 OpenGL 64Bit
50.62 fps
Cinebench R11.5 CPU Multi 64Bit
6.98 Points
Cinebench R15 OpenGL 64Bit
62.96 fps
Cinebench R15 Ref. Match 64Bit
99.6 %
Cinebench R15 CPU Multi 64Bit
645 Points
Cinebench R15 CPU Single 64Bit
135 Points
Help
Cinebench R11.5 - OpenGL 64Bit (sort by value)
Toshiba Satellite P70-A-104
GeForce GT 745M, 4700MQ, HGST Travelstar 5K1000 HTS541010A9E680
50.62 fps ∼46%
Asus F75VC-TY088H
GeForce GT 720M, 2370M, Hitachi Travelstar Z5K500 HTS545050A7E380
21.45 fps ∼20% -58%
HP Pavilion 17-e054sg
Radeon HD 8650G + HD 8670M Dual Graphics, A10-5750M, Toshiba MQ01ABD100
30.23 fps ∼28% -40%
Toshiba Satellite S70-A-10F
GeForce GT 740M, 4700MQ, HGST Travelstar 5K1000 HTS541010A9E680
41.18 fps ∼38% -19%
Acer Aspire V3-771G
GeForce GT 650M, 3610QM, Intel SSD 320 Series SSDSA2CW120G3
42.37 fps ∼39% -16%
Asus N750JV-T4110H
GeForce GT 750M, 4700HQ, Seagate Momentus ST750LM022 HN-M750MB
46.39 fps ∼42% -8%
Samsung ATIV Book 8 Touch 880Z5E X01
Radeon HD 8870M, 3635QM, Toshiba MQ01ABD100
53.85 fps ∼49% +6%
Acer Aspire V3-772G-747A321
GeForce GTX 760M, 4702MQ, Toshiba MQ01ABD100
56.53 fps ∼52% +12%
Cinebench R11.5 - CPU Multi 64Bit (sort by value)
Toshiba Satellite P70-A-104
GeForce GT 745M, 4700MQ, HGST Travelstar 5K1000 HTS541010A9E680
6.98 Points ∼40%
HP Pavilion 17-e054sg
Radeon HD 8650G + HD 8670M Dual Graphics, A10-5750M, Toshiba MQ01ABD100
2.25 Points ∼13% -68%
Asus F75VC-TY088H
GeForce GT 720M, 2370M, Hitachi Travelstar Z5K500 HTS545050A7E380
2.29 Points ∼13% -67%
Acer Aspire V3-771G
GeForce GT 650M, 3610QM, Intel SSD 320 Series SSDSA2CW120G3
6.19 Points ∼35% -11%
Acer Aspire V3-772G-747A321
GeForce GTX 760M, 4702MQ, Toshiba MQ01ABD100
6.36 Points ∼36% -9%
Samsung ATIV Book 8 Touch 880Z5E X01
Radeon HD 8870M, 3635QM, Toshiba MQ01ABD100
6.46 Points ∼37% -7%
Asus N750JV-T4110H
GeForce GT 750M, 4700HQ, Seagate Momentus ST750LM022 HN-M750MB
6.47 Points ∼37% -7%
Toshiba Satellite S70-A-10F
GeForce GT 740M, 4700MQ, HGST Travelstar 5K1000 HTS541010A9E680
6.57 Points ∼37% -6%

System Performance

System performance of our test model remains the same as that of the pre-production model: the system reacts quickly and runs smoothly. The good PCMark benchmark results support this assertion. The N750JV (Core i7-4700HQ, GeForce GT 750M) and the Ativ Book (Core i7-3635QM, Radeon HD 8870M) perform at similar levels.

We installed a Solid State Drive (Crucial RealSSD C300 - 64 GB) in the laptop and put Windows 8 on it. This dropped the boot time and also reduced the loading times for programs. The PCMark benchmark reveals that the laptop benefits greatly from this upgrade: The PCMark 7 score rises by 70% to 5,585 points. The PCMark Vantage score rises to 17,724 points (double the original).

5.9
Windows 8 Experience Index
Processor
Calculations per second
7.9
Memory (RAM)
Memory operations per second
7.9
Graphics
Desktop performance for Windows Aero
6.8
Gaming graphics
3D business and gaming graphics
6.8
Primary hard disk
Disk data transfer rate
5.9
PC Mark
PCMark Vantage8384 points
PCMark 73292 points
PCMark 8 Home3665 points
PCMark 8 Creative3661 points
PCMark 8 Work4407 points
Help
PCMark 7 - Score (sort by value)
Toshiba Satellite P70-A-104
GeForce GT 745M, 4700MQ, HGST Travelstar 5K1000 HTS541010A9E680
3292 Points ∼50%
HP Pavilion 17-e054sg
Radeon HD 8650G + HD 8670M Dual Graphics, A10-5750M, Toshiba MQ01ABD100
2122 Points ∼32% -36%
Asus F75VC-TY088H
GeForce GT 720M, 2370M, Hitachi Travelstar Z5K500 HTS545050A7E380
2130 Points ∼32% -35%
Asus N750JV-T4110H
GeForce GT 750M, 4700HQ, Seagate Momentus ST750LM022 HN-M750MB
3211 Points ∼48% -2%
Samsung ATIV Book 8 Touch 880Z5E X01
Radeon HD 8870M, 3635QM, Toshiba MQ01ABD100
3290 Points ∼50% 0%
Toshiba Satellite S70-A-10F
GeForce GT 740M, 4700MQ, HGST Travelstar 5K1000 HTS541010A9E680
3341 Points ∼50% +1%
Acer Aspire V3-771G
GeForce GT 650M, 3610QM, Intel SSD 320 Series SSDSA2CW120G3
4160 Points ∼63% +26%
Acer Aspire V3-772G-747A321
GeForce GTX 760M, 4702MQ, Toshiba MQ01ABD100
5650 Points ∼85% +72%

Storage Device

HD Tune
HD Tune
CrystalDiskMark
CrystalDiskMark

The hard drive of the Satellite is from the HGST Travelstar 5K1000 series. It operates at 5,400 rpm and has a capacity of 1 TB (P70 pre-production model had 250 GB). CrystalDiskMark reports a read rate of 108.1 MB/s and HD Tune notes an average transfer rate of 82.3 MB/s. These are good values but we would still like to see at least a hybrid HDD for this price (in-built SSD cache) or a faster 7,200 rpm hard drive.

An acceleration sensor protects the hard drive. As soon as it senses a drop, the hard drive head is securely locked, thus preventing damage to the HDD. If you replace the HDD with a SSD, then this feature is no longer required and can be turned off (in "Toshiba System Settings" tool).

HGST Travelstar 5K1000 HTS541010A9E680
Transfer Rate Minimum: 24.2 MB/s
Transfer Rate Maximum: 109 MB/s
Transfer Rate Average: 82.3 MB/s
Access Time: 17.2 ms
Burst Rate: 187.4 MB/s
CPU Usage: 2.1 %

Graphics Card

The graphics output is provided by the Intel HD Graphics 4600 IGP and Nvidia GeForce GT 745M graphics card. The IGP works with low load programs or runs while the laptop is on battery, whereas the GeForce card kicks in when high GPU performance is required (for example, 3D games). Both chips support DirectX 11.1 and the GeForce card belongs to the middle-class. The card operates at a speed of 837 MHz which can be raised using Turbo to 1,045 MHz (included in the Satellite).

The 3DMark benchmarks hold no surprises for us: the best scores (except in one test) are from the Ativ Book (Core i7-3635QM, Radeon HD 8870M). After all, it does have the strongest GPU. The N750JV (Core i7-4700HQ, GeForce GT 750M) performs a little better than the Satellite as it also has a stronger GPU.

3D Mark
3DMark 06
 1280x1024
13741 points
3DMark Vantage9286 points
3DMark 112465 points
3DMark Ice Storm63935 points
3DMark Cloud Gate8945 points
3DMark Fire Strike1468 points
Help
Toshiba Satellite P70-A-104
Intel Core i7-4700MQ, NVIDIA GeForce GT 745M, HGST Travelstar 5K1000 HTS541010A9E680
Asus N750JV-T4110H
Intel Core i7-4700HQ, NVIDIA GeForce GT 750M, Seagate Momentus ST750LM022 HN-M750MB
Samsung ATIV Book 8 Touch 880Z5E X01
Intel Core i7-3635QM, AMD Radeon HD 8870M, Toshiba MQ01ABD100
Acer Aspire V3-772G-747A321
Intel Core i7-4702MQ, NVIDIA GeForce GTX 760M, Toshiba MQ01ABD100
3DMark (2013)
4%
21%
28%
1280x720 Ice Storm Standard Score6393570024
10%
53664
-16%
79494
24%
1280x720 Cloud Gate Standard Score89458871
-1%
11328
27%
11171
25%
1920x1080 Fire Strike Standard Score14681508
3%
2235
52%
1971
34%

Gaming Performance

A glance at the hardware is enough to know that most games will run well on this model. At HD resolution (1366x768 pixels) and medium to high settings most games run fluidly. A few games, like F1 2013, even allow the resolution to be raised to the native resolution (Full HD) with max settings. The laptop can even run the latest games like Battlefield 4 and Batman: Arkham Origins fluidly. However, the demanding Company of Heroes 2 pushes the Satellite past its limits.

The Ativ Book and the N750JV are possible alternatives if the graphics performance of the Satellite is not enough, as both models provide higher frame rates. The Acer Aspire V3-772G (Core i7-4702MQ, GeForce GTX 760M) is also a possibility as its gaming performance is even higher than the two models we have for comparison (runs most games in Full HD fluidly). It is priced similar to the Satellite.

low med.high ultra
Crysis - GPU Benchmark (2007) 51.4fps
Crysis - CPU Benchmark (2007) 42.7fps
Resident Evil 5 (2009) 79.846.5fps
Battlefield: Bad Company 2 (2010) 55.828.2fps
Metro 2033 (2010) 5629.5fps
Mafia 2 (2010) 70.142.3fps
Civilization 5 (2010) 7717.6fps
Total War: Shogun 2 (2011) 46.718.5fps
Dirt 3 (2011) 77.925.4fps
Deus Ex Human Revolution (2011) 57.531.9fps
Batman: Arkham City (2011) 884822fps
The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim (2011) 47.533.918.9fps
Anno 2070 (2011) 67.840.819.9fps
Alan Wake (2012) 45.925.2fps
Ghost Recon: Future Soldier (2012) 53.618.2fps
Darksiders II (2012) 34.8fps
Dishonored (2012) 84.473.743.5fps
Tomb Raider (2013) 63.237.217.4fps
StarCraft II: Heart of the Swarm (2013) 100.259.621.9fps
Company of Heroes 2 (2013) 28.322.815.2fps
Splinter Cell: Blacklist (2013) 49.823.6fps
Saints Row IV (2013) 52.122.3fps
Total War: Rome II (2013) 66.353.47.9fps
F1 2013 (2013) 1059438fps
Batman: Arkham Origins (2013) 132773617fps
Battlefield 4 (2013) 45.828.911.2fps
Toshiba Satellite P70-A-104
Intel Core i7-4700MQ, NVIDIA GeForce GT 745M, HGST Travelstar 5K1000 HTS541010A9E680
Asus N750JV-T4110H
Intel Core i7-4700HQ, NVIDIA GeForce GT 750M, Seagate Momentus ST750LM022 HN-M750MB
Samsung ATIV Book 8 Touch 880Z5E X01
Intel Core i7-3635QM, AMD Radeon HD 8870M, Toshiba MQ01ABD100
Acer Aspire V3-772G-747A321
Intel Core i7-4702MQ, NVIDIA GeForce GTX 760M, Toshiba MQ01ABD100
Tomb Raider
6%
48%
64%
1366x768 Normal Preset AA:FX AF:4x63.284
33%
99
57%
1366x768 High Preset AA:FX AF:8x37.240.2
8%
58.4
57%
65
75%
1920x1080 Ultra Preset AA:FX AF:16x17.417.9
3%
26.7
53%
27.6
59%

Emissions

System Noise

While idle, the noise emissions of our test model range stay at 33.5 to 33.7 dB. These values are acceptable for the hardware installed in our laptop. The N750JV (33.1 - 33.7 dB) has similar values whereas the Ativ Book is the quietest (29.8 - 30.4 dB). The Samsung laptop is far quieter due to the fact that at times its fan simply switches off. At medium (3D Mark 06 running) or full load (stress test, Prime95 and Furmark running) the emissions rise to 38.9 - 42.7 dB. Once again, the N750JV depicts a similar behavior (38.7 - 43 dB). At full load, the Ativ Book also rises to a similar level (30.8 - 40.7 dB).

Noise Level

Idle 33.5 / 33.5 / 33.5 dB(A)
HDD 33.7 dB(A)
DVD 33.7 / dB(A)
Load 38.9 / 42.7 dB(A)
 
    30 dB
silent
40 dB
audible
50 dB
loud
 
min: , med: , max:    Voltcraft sl-320 (15 cm distance)

Temperature

The Satellite P70-A-104 in the stress test.
The Satellite P70-A-104 in the stress test.

While idle, the temperatures of the notebooks are well within limits. As expected, at load, these rise significantly. The Satellite performs poorly in this case. At the ventilation opening, the laptop can cross the 70 °C mark. In this case, the device should not be placed on the lap. During normal use, the laptop does not heat up as much. However, we still do not recommend placing sensitive objects or the hands near the ventilation opening.

In the stress test (Prime95 and Furmark run for at least 1 hour), we observed a similar behavior to the pre-production model: when plugged in or on battery the CPU runs at 800 MHz to 3.2 GHz. The CPU fluctuates between these speeds and after a while 3.2 GHz is no longer reached. The highest speed that can be reached is then 2.9 - 3 GHz. The GPU runs at its Turbo speed (1,045 MHz) throughout regardless of whether the laptop is plugged in or not. This stress test presents an unrealistic situation to push the laptop to its limits. As such, throttling will not be a problem in everyday use, as shown by the various benchmarks we ran.

We ran 3DMark06 right after the stress test (laptop plugged in). The result was the same as in the "cold state" (we ran 3DMark06 right after the laptop started). As such, there are no performance limitations. The CPU reaches up to 100 °C in the stress test.

Max. Load
 25.5 °C28.3 °C54.2 °C 
 25.3 °C38.8 °C53 °C 
 24.3 °C35.4 °C42.7 °C 
Maximum: 54.2 °C
Average: 36.4 °C
72.1 °C36.6 °C25.6 °C
65.8 °C56 °C25.8 °C
42.7 °C30.6 °C26.2 °C
Maximum: 72.1 °C
Average: 42.4 °C
Power Supply (max.)  56.2 °C | Room Temperature 23.8 °C | Voltcraft IR-360

Energy Management

Power Consumption

The power consumption has changed quite a lot since the pre-production model. While idle, the power consumption lies between 7.7 and 14 W. The N750JV (9.4 - 18.6 W) and the Ativ Book (9.9 - 16.1 W) consume more. At medium load (3DMark06 running) or at full load (stress test, Prime95 and Furmark running), the Satellite requires 41.6 - 68 W - modest. The Ativ Book (75.4 - 89.7 W) and the Asus model (94.7 - 79.6 W) once again require more power. At full load, the power consumption of the Asus notebook drops due to the throttling of the performance.

Power Consumption

Off / Standby 0.2 / 0.2 Watt
Idle 7.7 / 13.4 / 14 Watt
Load 41.6 / 68 Watt
 
Key: min: , med: , max:         Voltcraft VC 940

Battery Life

The battery life has also changed since the pre-cursor model: while idle the battery of the Satellite lasts 6:21 hours. The N750JV (6:53 h) lasts slightly longer, but the Ativ Book lasts longest (12:49 h). The idle runtime was measured using Battery Eater Reader's test: the screen is set to the lowest brightness setting, "Power Saver" mode is turned on and the wireless modules are turned off. At load, neither the Satellite (0:45 h) nor the N750JV (0:57 h) last 1 hour. Once again, the Ativ Book performs best (2:02 h). The runtime at load was measured by running the Battery Eater Classic test which sets the brightness to max, the power profile to "High Performance" and the wireless modules are on.

The WLAN test is finished after 3:07 h on the Satellite. In this test, the N750JV (4:34 h) and the Ativ Book (6:26 h) last longer. This test automatically loads webpages every 40 seconds with "Power Saver" profile and brightness set to 150 cd/m². In the DVD playback test, the Satellite lasts 1:50 h. The N750JV (2:54 h) offers a longer DVD playback experience. The Ativ Book is not equipped with a DVD drive. The DVD test runs with the "Power Saver" profile (or a higher profile, if the DVD is not played fluidly) at full brightness with wireless modules turned off.

One look at the battery capacities (Toshiba: 48 Wh, Asus: 70 Wh, Samsung: 91 Wh) reveals why the Satellite has the shortest battery life. The runtimes of the Satellite have improved a lot in comparison to the pre-production model and we only observed a worse runtime in the DVD test. We believe this is due to the higher brightness of the display.

Battery Runtime
Idle (without WLAN, min brightness)
6h 21min
WiFi Surfing
3h 07min
DVD
1h 50min
Blu-ray
1h 57min
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0h 45min

Verdict

The Toshiba Satellite P70-A-104.
The Toshiba Satellite P70-A-104.

The Satellite offers a high program performance and good gaming performance. Furthermore, there is a lot of storage space and a second storage device can be added (if necessary). The exterior is attractive but it is a matter of taste. Typists will enjoy the nice keyboard and the speakers of the device are really good (for a laptop) and offer good sound. The bright, strong contrast display is a nice feature of the laptop. Unfortunately, Toshiba did not choose an IPS panel and the battery life is not as long as we would have liked. Toshiba only offers a standard battery for the model which does not have such a large capacity. All-in-all, the manufacturer has made significant improvements since the pre-production model. The laptop now has better hardware, consumes less power and offers better runtimes (with the same battery capacity).

The Asus N750JV is the first choice for all buyers looking for a matte IPS panel and a better gaming experience. The Samsung Ativ Book 8 is also a viable option as it offers even more gaming performance and has by far the best runtimes.

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The Toshiba Satellite P70-A-104, provided by:
The Toshiba Satellite P70-A-104, provided by:

Specifications

Toshiba Satellite P70-A-104

:: Processor
:: Mainboard
Intel HM86 (Lynx Point)
:: Memory
8192 MB, DDR3, Dual Channel, 4 RAM slots (two slots occupied), up to 32 GB
:: Graphics adapter
NVIDIA GeForce GT 745M - 2048 MB, Core: 837-1045 MHz, Memory: 900 MHz, DDR3 RAM, ForceWare 331.65, Optimus
:: Display
17.3 inch 16:9, 1920x1080 pixel, TN LED, AU Optronics B173HW02 V0, glossy: yes
:: Harddisk
HGST Travelstar 5K1000 HTS541010A9E680, 1000 GB 5400 rpm , 898 GB free
:: Soundcard
Intel Lynx Point PCH - High Definition Audio Controller
:: Connections
4 USB 3.0, 1 VGA, 1 HDMI, 1 Kensington Lock, Audio Connections: Headphones, Microphone jacks, Card Reader: SD, SDHC, SDXC, MMC, Memory Stick, Sensors: Gyro sensor @HDD,
:: Networking
Atheros AR8161/8165 PCI-E Gigabit Ethernet Controller (10/100/1000MBit), Intel Centrino Wireless-N 2230 (b g n ), 4.0 Bluetooth
:: Optical drive
Matshita BD-MLT UJ272
:: Size
height x width x depth (in mm): 33.7 x 418.4 x 272.5
:: Weight
3 kg Power Supply: 0.616 kg
:: Battery
48 Wh Lithium-Ion, 10.8 V, 4200 mAh
:: Price
1200 Euro
:: Operating System
Microsoft Windows 8 64 Bit
:: Additional features
Webcam: 2 MP (up to 1080p video), Speakers: 4x Harman Kardon 6 Watt speakers, Keyboard: Chiclet, Keyboard Light: yes, McAfee Internet Security (30 day trial), Microsoft Office 365 (test version), Toshiba Blu-Ray Disc Player, 24 Months Warranty

 

The model has a Blu-ray burner.
The model has a Blu-ray burner.
The numeric pad will delight accountants.
The numeric pad will delight accountants.
The display cover is made of metal.
The display cover is made of metal.
A maintenance flap ...
A maintenance flap ...
... protects the innards of the laptop.
... protects the innards of the laptop.
Two RAM slots are free.
Two RAM slots are free.
Swapping the HDD out should not pose a problem.
Swapping the HDD out should not pose a problem.
A secondary storage device slot is available.
A secondary storage device slot is available.
Good: two WLAN antennas.
Good: two WLAN antennas.
The BIOS battery can be replaced.
The BIOS battery can be replaced.
Clear to see: the CPU is seated in a socket.
Clear to see: the CPU is seated in a socket.
A 300 grams battery ...
A 300 grams battery ...
... offers a capacity of 48 Wh.
... offers a capacity of 48 Wh.
The power adapter weighs 616 grams ...
The power adapter weighs 616 grams ...
.. and offers at most 120 W.
.. and offers at most 120 W.
The speakers are seated beneath the grill.
The speakers are seated beneath the grill.
The keys have backlighting.
The keys have backlighting.
Outdoors with the Satellite.
Outdoors with the Satellite.

Similar Devices

Devices with the same GPU

» Review Toshiba Satellite P50-A-11L Notebook
Core i7 4700MQ, 15.6", 2.44 kg

Devices with Same Screen Size and/or Weight

» Acer Aspire V3-772G-747a8G1.12TWakk Notebook Review
GeForce GTX 850M, Core i7 4702MQ
» Toshiba Satellite Pro C70-B-111 Notebook Review
Radeon R7 M260, Core i5 4200U
» Gigabyte P27G v2 Notebook Review
GeForce GTX 860M, Core i7 4710MQ

Links

Price Comparison

Pro

+Good program performance
+Decent gaming performance
+Large storage space
+Bright display with strong contrast
+Good keyboard
+Blu-ray burner
+Secondary hard disk slot available
+4 RAM slots
 

Cons

-No IPS panel
-No SSD cache
-Blue-tinted screen

Shortcut

What we like

The good program performance and the nice exterior. The secondary HDD slot is also nice.

What we miss

An IPS display. We expect one for this price.

What surprises us

The speaker system produces a good sound (for a notebook).

The competition

Asus N750JV-T4110H, Samsung ATIV Book 8 Touch 880Z5E X01, Acer Aspire V3-772G, Schenker XMG C703 (MSI MS-1771), Toshiba Satellite S70-A-10F, Toshiba Satellite L70-A-10T, HP Envy 17t-j003, MSI GX70H-A108972811B, MSI GE70-i765M287, Acer Aspire V3-771G.

Rating

Toshiba Satellite P70-A-104
11/05/2013 v3
Sascha Mölck

Chassis
85%
Keyboard
86%
Pointing Device
83%
Connectivity
73%
Weight
73%
Battery
72%
Display
72%
Games Performance
89%
Application Performance
92%
Temperature
56%
Noise
81%
Add Points
84%
Average
79%
81%
Gaming *
Weighted Average

> Notebook / Laptop Reviews and News > Reviews > Review Toshiba Satellite P70-A-104 Notebook
Author: Sascha Mölck, 2013-11-15 (Update: 2013-11-18)