Review Toshiba Satellite U840T-101 Ultrabook

Daniel Schmidt (translated by Justin Quam), 11/20/2013

A bit late. Toshiba's ultrabook with touchscreen had been promised for the second quarter of 2013, but a test product only just reached us. An i5-3337U of the Ivy Bridge generation should ensure enough processing power and is supported by 8 GB of RAM. It's certainly a strong package of performance, but can the machine contend with Intel's newer competition based on Haswell?

For the original German review, see here.

With the Satellite U840T-101, Toshiba released an ultrabook into the mix that was already technically overmatched by its release date. Just a month later, Intel's Haswell generation is supposed to begin its run. Still, the Japanese firm presents a thoroughly attractive package that has, meanwhile, steeply declined in price and can be had for just 799 Euros (~$1080). Just as before, the Intel Core i5-3337U offers a good and economical performance level. 8 GB of RAM and the Intel HD Graphics 4000 integrated graphics system support it. Apart from the ample 500 GB hard drive, the manufacturers have sprung for an additional 32 GB Caching SSD. There are several variously equipped versions in this series:

Model U840t-101 U840t-103 U840t-109 U840t-10C
Processor Intel Core i5-3337U Intel Core i5-3337U Intel Core i3-3217U Intel Core i5-3337U
RAM 8 GB 8 GB 6 GB 6 GB
Hard Drive 500 GB none 500 GB none
Solid State Drive 32 GB (Caching) 128 GB none 256 GB

Still, the competition has not been sleeping, and they offer similarly equipped ultrabooks in the race for market share. The HP Envy TouchSmart 4-1102sg even comes from last year, though the processor (i5-3317U, 1.7 GHz) is somewhat weaker. On the other side, the U840T has to prove itself against current Haswell ultrabooks, such as the Lenovo IdeaPad U430 Touch (i5-4200U, 1.6 GHz), which even offers an additional dedicated graphics card.

Case

Wie wir testen - Gehäuse

The upper surfaces are clothed in aluminum.
The upper surfaces are clothed in aluminum.
The underside consists of plastic.
The underside consists of plastic.

The Toshiba Satellite U840T-101 is slim, as befits a true ultrabook. The manufacturer measures the machine's height at 20.7 mm, which is just under the prerequisite height of 21 mm, which determines whether the notebook can call itself an ultrabook. At 1,736 grams (~3.8 pounds) the U840T's weight is appropriate to its class.

The upper surfaces are kept in an aluminum design, which has a palpably pleasing, well-made effect. Also, fingerprints are not visible too quickly. The slim display is encased in a high-luster plastic frame, which seems to magically attract dust. The panel can be twisted quite easily, but it does not creak or crack; on the contrary, it seems quite stable. The base unit, on the other hand, proves itself quite stiff and leaves a solid impression. The clearances are even and offer no grounds for criticism.

Both display hinges keep the touch screen reliably in position. Still, the panel swings back and forth a bit when the base is shaken. We appreciate the fact that the ultrabook discharges its heat to the rear. The battery is fixed in place and cannot be swapped out without serious effort. Despite this, the product leaves behind a good impression in terms of workmanship.

Connectivity

Wie wir testen - Ausstattung

The connectivity is at the usual level for an ultrabook. The available USB 3.0 port can be used even when the machine is shut down to provide power to external devices. This must, however, be activated beforehand in BIOS. The integrated card reader supports cards in the SD format up to 64 GB (SDXC) as well as MMC cards up to 2 GB.

Fortunately, the ports are all positioned far to the back and thereby do not interfere with the external input devices, even when all of them are occupied. 

front view
front view
back: fan outlet
back: fan outlet
left: lock, power, HDMI, USB 3.0, microphone, headphones
left: lock, power, HDMI, USB 3.0, microphone, headphones
right: card reader, 2x USB 2.0, LAN
right: card reader, 2x USB 2.0, LAN
NetIO: LAN
NetIO: LAN
NetIO: WLAN (3 m/ ~10 feet away from the router)
NetIO: WLAN (3 m/ ~10 feet away from the router)

Communications

The Toshiba Satellite U840T-101 has a Fast Ethernet connection at its disposal, which allows the machine to connect over LAN. Unfortunately, Gigabit LAN is not provided, as it is in rival machines. With the NetIO tool, we tested the components' data transfer rate and availed ourselves of an individual test arrangement. As a remote station, we used a normal desktop PC; the data were transferred over a gigabit switch. The LAN interface of the U840T worked very quickly given its proportions; here there is nothing to criticize.

Alternatively, the ultrabook can also connect over WLAN. The built-in Intel Centrino Wireless-N 2230 module supports the IEEE-802.11 standards b/g/n and transmits only in the bandwidth of 2.4 GHz. The maximum transfer rate is also limited to 150 MBit/s, and in practice we only achieved half this rate. For all that, the range of the WLAN is quite good. Even at a distance of 20 m (~66 feet) from the router (Fritz!Box 6360), we still had a good signal strength and could not notice any impairments while surfing the web.

Accessories

The accessories are quite spartan; they include, apart from a power cord with a nominal capacity of 45 W (19 V, 2.37 A) just a how-to and a warranty booklet.

Those who had expected Windows 8 on a data storage device, or at least a DVD with drivers, will be disappointed. Instead, the Japanese firm offers the option to create a recovery data storage device with the preinstalled tool Recovery Media Creator. We recommend this strongly. The machine has a Recovery Partition at its disposal anyway; if the hard drive fails or is swapped out, this will be good for nothing.

Toshiba offers no custom-built accessories directly on the Satellite U840T, but it offers sufficient universal notebook accessories.

Maintenance

The ultrabook's maintenance options are severely constrained and not even supported by Toshiba. Those who wish to remove the bottom panel must not only prize free a few screws. The casing is also held in place by two further screws that are only accessible by removing the keyboard. Since this is a loaned machine, we decided to forgo this procedure.

Apart from that, Toshiba indicates that the RAM modules should only be expanded by authorized staff. Even cleaning the fan or switching out the battery is impossible for the user.

Warranty

Toshiba grants a 12-month warranty on its ultrabook, which can be extended directly from the manufacturer. The Japanese firm offers various international warranty extensions in its shop, between two and four years (34 to 109 Euros, or ~$45-150). In case of damage, the machine must be sent to Toshiba.

The so-called "Whatever-happens warranty" can be had for one (59 Euros, ~$80) or three (74 Euros, ~$100) years. It includes accident and theft protection as well as a data retrieval service apart from the usual warranty conditions.

Toshiba offers an in-store service (99 to 119 Euros, ~$135-160) as well, which is available in Europe, the Middle East, and Africa (at a range of 100 km/~62 miles around major cities).

Purchasers in Austria and Germany can enjoy a two-year merchants' warranty.

The Update is distributed via the Store.

Update to Windows 8.1

Windows 8 (64-bit) is installed as an operating system and can be updated to the current Version 8.1 for free. To do this, users must simply open Windows Store, where the update is offered for installation as an app.

Downloading and installing the update requires a fair bit of time. Still, those who have already installed all updates that Windows provides will have no problems after the changeover. It is important that the update be executed with the desktop version, so that optional updates can also be installed. For this purpose, Toshiba has provided three new drivers.

There are no huge performance improvements here. Despite that, the system achieves somewhat better results in PCMark 8 Work, as well as in 3DMark. Apart from that, the HD 4000 receives a new driver (Version 10.18.10.3308). We definitely recommend this update for its improved user friendliness.

Windows 8.1 runs on the Satellite U840T-101 without any problems.
Windows 8.1 runs on the Satellite U840T-101 without any problems.
After the update, there were no driver problems.
After the update, there were no driver problems.
The large tiles are the most obvious change.
The large tiles are the most obvious change.
The store has been seriously overhauled.
The store has been seriously overhauled.
PCMark 8 Work: 4641 points (Win 8: 4,580 points)
PCMark 8 Work: 4641 points (Win 8: 4,580 points)
3DMark Ice Storme Extreme: 29,420 points (Win 8: 28,360)
3DMark Ice Storme Extreme: 29,420 points (Win 8: 28,360)
Windows 8.1 Impressionen des Toshiba Satellite U840T-101

Input Devices

Wie wir testen - Eingabegeräte

Keyboard

The keyboard's dimensions are comfortable. The QWERTY keys are fairly wide, at 15 x 12 mm, but not especially deep. The average stroke is very weak and sponge-like. Unfortunately, the keys do not give clear feedback. Despite that, we could hear a decent click. The input surfaces are flat and built completely out of smooth plastic. Under strong pressure, the middle of the keyboard sinks noticeably. The one-level backlighting is white and comfortably consistent. Overall, the input device leaves a mixed impression but does not really convince us.

Touchpad

The touchpad measures at 100 x 62 mm (~3.9 x 2.4 inches) and has two integrated mouse buttons at its disposal. These are quite stiff, but they give clear feedback when their resistance is overcome. The swipe features of the pad are decent and reflect their inputs precisely, but they could stand to be quicker. For the moment, this input device suffices. However, those who really want to work with the machine are hamstrung without the addition of a mouse.

Touchscreen

The 14-inch capacitive touchscreen recognizes up to ten contacts at the same time. Inputs are immediately implemented. Unfortunately, the swipability of the surface is not good. It feels like our fingers remain glued to the screen when we try to move them.

Keyboard
Keyboard
Touchpad
Touchpad

Display

Wie wir testen - Display

The 14-inch display comes from the AU Optronics house and has a resolution of 1366x768 pixels. This corresponds to its ratio of 16:9 and a pixel density of 112 ppi. In view of the panel's diagonal, a higher resolution would have been desirable, since (for example) even the description tests in the Windows Store present a rough-around-the-edges effect.

The panel has a glossy upper surface and a brightness of just 177 cd/m², which is not particularly bright. With indoor use, this will cause no problems, but the value is still below average. At 79%, the illumination is also not particularly good, which again is not noticeable in everyday use. 

191
cd/m²
189
cd/m²
193
cd/m²
185
cd/m²
189
cd/m²
179
cd/m²
166
cd/m²
152
cd/m²
153
cd/m²
Information
X-Rite i1 Basic Pro 2
Maximum: 193 cd/m²
Average: 177.4 cd/m²
Brightness Distribution: 79 %
Center on Battery: 189 cd/m²
Black: 0.22 cd/m²
Contrast: 859:1
Distribution of brightness

The black level, at 0.22 cd/m², is quite good and offers no technical grounds for criticism. The high contrast of 859:1 is excellent.

Unfortunately, the color calibration is unconvincing. The grayscale shows a noticeable deviation, with an average DeltaE of 10. Likewise, we noticed a clear blue tint, which leaves the image content appearing quite cool. This is confirmed by the otherwise moderately calibrated color saturation, by which blue is a noticeable outlier (DeltaE 20). The color mask (sRGB: 51%, Adobe RGB: 36%) also makes it clear that professional image editing or presenting is out of the question.

grayscale (uncalibrated, ideal color space sRGB)
grayscale (uncalibrated, ideal color space sRGB)
color saturation (uncalibrated, ideal color space sRGB)
color saturation (uncalibrated, ideal color space sRGB)
secondary colors (uncalibrated, ideal color space sRGB)
secondary colors (uncalibrated, ideal color space sRGB)
Adobe RGB (35.9%)
Adobe RGB (35.9%)
sRGB (51.4%)
sRGB (51.4%)

Outdoors, the Toshiba Satellite U840T-101 can be used despite the weak light power of its displays, as long as it does not get too bright. Indeed, in the shade, it offers a decent image and it can be used without restrictions. However, in direct sunlight the reflections are the lesser evil, since the panel is just not luminous enough.

the U840T-101 in the blazing autumn sun
the U840T-101 in the blazing autumn sun
Viewing angles of the U840T-101
Viewing angles of the U840T-101

The viewing angle stability of the ultrabook is below average, even for a TN panel. With each change in our sitting position, we had to adjust the display in order not to see any color changes or inversions. Even nodding the head can lead to misrepresentations on the screen. For that reason, despite its high contrast and good black level, there is little to enjoy in the Satellite U480T's multimedia use.

Performance

Wie wir testen - Leistung

The Toshiba Satellite U840T-101's performance base is the Intel Core i5-3337U, which comes from the Ivy Bridge generation and is supported by the integrated Intel HD Graphics 4000 graphics system. 8 GB of RAM lends its support, operating in dual channel mode. The conventional hard drive offers lots of space and is supported by an additional SSD.

HWiNFO64
CPU-Z
CPU-Z
CPU-Z
CPU-Z
DPC Latency Checker - Idle
ATTO Disk Benchmark
HD Tune
System information of the Toshiba Satellite U840T-101

Processor

The Intel Core i5-3337U does duty as the Satellite U840T-101's processor. The dual-core has a base speed of 1.8 GHz that can be increased to up to 2.7 GHz (single-core) with the help of Turbo Boost 2.0. Thanks to Hyperthreading, up to four threads can be worked on at once. The thrifty ULV processor has a TDP of 17 W, in which light the integrated HD 4000 seems well considered.

The CPU's performance is absolutely on target. In the Cinebench R11.5 benchmarks, the test machine achieves 1.11 points in the single-core test and 2.52 in the multi-core test. The Turbo is fully used at all times, which is even the case in battery use, to our delight. The Lenovo U430 (i5-4200U, 1.6 - 2.6 GHz) is no faster (despite being from a newer processor generation) and actually cycles more slowly.

Cinebench R15 Single-Core
Cinebench R15 Single-Core
Cinebench R15 Multi-Core
Cinebench R15 Multi-Core
Cinebench R15 Multi-Core in battery use
Cinebench R15 Multi-Core in battery use
Cinebench R11.5
CPU Multi 64Bit
Toshiba Satellite U840T-101
HD Graphics 4000, 3337U, Toshiba MQ01ABF050
2.52 Points ∼21%
HP Envy TouchSmart 4-1102sg
HD Graphics 4000, 3317U, 500 GB - 5400 rpm
2.35 Points ∼20% -7%
Lenovo IdeaPad U430 Touch 59372369
GeForce GT 730M, 4200U, Seagate ST500LX005-1CW162 500 GB + 16 GB Flash
2.44 Points ∼20% -3%
Acer Aspire R7-571G-53338G75ass
GeForce GT 750M, 3337U, WDC Scorpio Blue WD7500BPVX-22JC3T0
2.48 Points ∼21% -2%
Gigabyte S1185
HD Graphics 4000, 3337U, Phison SSG128GPTC0-S81
2.5 Points ∼21% -1%
Samsung ATIV 540U4E-K01US
HD Graphics 4000, 3337U, Seagate Momentus Thin ST500LT012-9WS142 + 24 GB SanDisk i100 SSD
2.49 Points ∼21% -1%
CPU Single 64Bit
Toshiba Satellite U840T-101
HD Graphics 4000, 3337U, Toshiba MQ01ABF050
1.11 Points ∼1%
HP Envy TouchSmart 4-1102sg
HD Graphics 4000, 3317U, 500 GB - 5400 rpm
1.03 Points ∼1% -7%
Lenovo IdeaPad U430 Touch 59372369
GeForce GT 730M, 4200U, Seagate ST500LX005-1CW162 500 GB + 16 GB Flash
1.11 Points ∼1% 0%
Acer Aspire R7-571G-53338G75ass
GeForce GT 750M, 3337U, WDC Scorpio Blue WD7500BPVX-22JC3T0
1.12 Points ∼1% +1%
Gigabyte S1185
HD Graphics 4000, 3337U, Phison SSG128GPTC0-S81
1.12 Points ∼1% +1%
Samsung ATIV 540U4E-K01US
HD Graphics 4000, 3337U, Seagate Momentus Thin ST500LT012-9WS142 + 24 GB SanDisk i100 SSD
1.1 Points ∼1% -1%
Cinebench R10 Rendering Single CPUs 64Bit
4651 Points
Cinebench R10 Shading 64Bit
5772 Points
Cinebench R10 Rendering Multiple CPUs 64Bit
9686 Points
Cinebench R10 Rendering Single 32Bit
3686
Cinebench R10 Rendering Multiple CPUs 32Bit
7678
Cinebench R10 Shading 32Bit
5796
Cinebench R11.5 OpenGL 64Bit
17.51 fps
Cinebench R11.5 CPU Multi 64Bit
2.52 Points
Cinebench R11.5 CPU Single 64Bit
1.11 Points
Cinebench R15 Ref. Match 64Bit
32.2 %
Cinebench R15 CPU Multi 64Bit
222 Points
Cinebench R15 CPU Single 64Bit
95 Points
Help

System Performance

The U840T-101's system performance is quite decent and is nothing to sneeze at in comparison with machines at the same performance level. In the PCMark 7 test, the test machine achieves a solid 4,300 points but must admit defeat to the HP Envy TouchSmart 4-1102sg (4,460 points), which has a Caching SSD at its disposal. Only the Gigabyte S1185 (4,393 points) is likewise just a bit faster; it relies completely on a Flash drive. These always perform well in the PCMark test.

Subjectively, there is nothing to complain about. For a configuration based primarily on a HDD as its drive, the U840T is quite zippy.

PCMark 7 - Score
Toshiba Satellite U840T-101
HD Graphics 4000, 3337U, Toshiba MQ01ABF050
4300 Points ∼65%
Samsung ATIV 540U4E-K01US
HD Graphics 4000, 3337U, Seagate Momentus Thin ST500LT012-9WS142 + 24 GB SanDisk i100 SSD
2534 Points ∼38% -41%
Wortmann Terra Mobile Pad 1160 Pro
HD Graphics 4000, 3337U, 128 GB SATA SSD
3906 Points ∼59% -9%
Lenovo IdeaPad U430 Touch 59372369
GeForce GT 730M, 4200U, Seagate ST500LX005-1CW162 500 GB + 16 GB Flash
3937 Points ∼59% -8%
Gigabyte S1185
HD Graphics 4000, 3337U, Phison SSG128GPTC0-S81
4393 Points ∼66% +2%
HP Envy TouchSmart 4-1102sg
HD Graphics 4000, 3317U, 500 GB - 5400 rpm
4460 Points ∼67% +4%
5.8
Windows 8 Experience Index
Processor
Calculations per second
6.9
Memory (RAM)
Memory operations per second
7.5
Graphics
Desktop performance for Windows Aero
5.8
Gaming graphics
3D business and gaming graphics
6.4
Primary hard disk
Disk data transfer rate
5.9
PC Mark
PCMark Vantage5877 points
PCMark 74300 points
PCMark 8 Home2799 points
PCMark 8 Creative2316 points
PCMark 8 Work4580 points
Help

Storage Devices

CrystalDiskMark
CrystalDiskMark

A traditional hard drive (HDD) of in-house production is used as the primary storage device, rotating at 5,400 rpm and storing 500 GB of data. At the start, only about 417 GB are available, the rest being taken up by recovery partitions and the preinstalled operating system. The Caching SDD from Samsung is also built in with 32 GB, which cannot be employed as a drive by the user. Instead, it should allow the system to start faster and permit a faster wake-up from sleep. Apart from this, the drive is adaptive and speeds up the most often used programs, increasing its read speed.

In sequential reading of data, the combination proves itself fairly quick. The reading of small data blocks is also at a good level, thanks to the Caching SSD. However, this system does not touch the performance of a full-fledged Solid State Drive such as the one in the S1185.

CrystalDiskMark 3.0
Read Seq
Toshiba Satellite U840T-101
HD Graphics 4000, 3337U, Toshiba MQ01ABF050
160.8 MB/s ∼15%
Lenovo IdeaPad U430 Touch 59372369
GeForce GT 730M, 4200U, Seagate ST500LX005-1CW162 500 GB + 16 GB Flash
75.92 MB/s ∼7% -53%
Acer Aspire R7-571G-53338G75ass
GeForce GT 750M, 3337U, WDC Scorpio Blue WD7500BPVX-22JC3T0
104.6 MB/s ∼10% -35%
HP Envy TouchSmart 4-1102sg
HD Graphics 4000, 3317U, 500 GB - 5400 rpm
249.7 MB/s ∼24% +55%
Gigabyte S1185
HD Graphics 4000, 3337U, Phison SSG128GPTC0-S81
516.3 MB/s ∼49% +221%
Write Seq
Toshiba Satellite U840T-101
HD Graphics 4000, 3337U, Toshiba MQ01ABF050
91.26 MB/s ∼11%
Lenovo IdeaPad U430 Touch 59372369
GeForce GT 730M, 4200U, Seagate ST500LX005-1CW162 500 GB + 16 GB Flash
117 MB/s ∼14% +28%
Acer Aspire R7-571G-53338G75ass
GeForce GT 750M, 3337U, WDC Scorpio Blue WD7500BPVX-22JC3T0
103.5 MB/s ∼13% +13%
HP Envy TouchSmart 4-1102sg
HD Graphics 4000, 3317U, 500 GB - 5400 rpm
78.21 MB/s ∼10% -14%
Gigabyte S1185
HD Graphics 4000, 3337U, Phison SSG128GPTC0-S81
101.7 MB/s ∼12% +11%
Read 4k
Toshiba Satellite U840T-101
HD Graphics 4000, 3337U, Toshiba MQ01ABF050
16.98 MB/s ∼39%
Lenovo IdeaPad U430 Touch 59372369
GeForce GT 730M, 4200U, Seagate ST500LX005-1CW162 500 GB + 16 GB Flash
0.372 MB/s ∼1% -98%
Acer Aspire R7-571G-53338G75ass
GeForce GT 750M, 3337U, WDC Scorpio Blue WD7500BPVX-22JC3T0
0.395 MB/s ∼1% -98%
HP Envy TouchSmart 4-1102sg
HD Graphics 4000, 3317U, 500 GB - 5400 rpm
20.14 MB/s ∼46% +19%
Gigabyte S1185
HD Graphics 4000, 3337U, Phison SSG128GPTC0-S81
20.01 MB/s ∼46% +18%
Write 4k
Toshiba Satellite U840T-101
HD Graphics 4000, 3337U, Toshiba MQ01ABF050
0.799 MB/s ∼0%
Lenovo IdeaPad U430 Touch 59372369
GeForce GT 730M, 4200U, Seagate ST500LX005-1CW162 500 GB + 16 GB Flash
0.679 MB/s ∼0% -15%
Acer Aspire R7-571G-53338G75ass
GeForce GT 750M, 3337U, WDC Scorpio Blue WD7500BPVX-22JC3T0
0.917 MB/s ∼1% +15%
HP Envy TouchSmart 4-1102sg
HD Graphics 4000, 3317U, 500 GB - 5400 rpm
0.7 MB/s ∼0% -12%
Gigabyte S1185
HD Graphics 4000, 3337U, Phison SSG128GPTC0-S81
41.35 MB/s ∼25% +5075%
Toshiba MQ01ABF050
Transfer Rate Minimum: 45.2 MB/s
Transfer Rate Maximum: 158.1 MB/s
Transfer Rate Average: 87.7 MB/s
Access Time: 0.2 ms
Burst Rate: 166.6 MB/s
CPU Usage: 3.1 %

Graphics card

The integrated Intel HD Graphics 4000 is responsible for graphics rendering. It possesses RAM storage and runs in the Satellite U840T-101 between 350 and 1,100 MHz. It offers enough performance for everyday assignments and supports video coding. 

Compared to other systems, the GPU used here is somewhat faster. In the 3DMark Fire Strike test, it achieves 581 points, higher than other models with the same GPU. The Lenovo U430 (GeForce GT 730M, 920 points), which has a dedicated GPU, is markedly faster.

3DMark 11
1280x720 Performance
Toshiba Satellite U840T-101
HD Graphics 4000, 3337U, Toshiba MQ01ABF050
683 Points ∼5%
Gigabyte S1185
HD Graphics 4000, 3337U, Phison SSG128GPTC0-S81
581 Points ∼5% -15%
HP Envy TouchSmart 4-1102sg
HD Graphics 4000, 3317U, 500 GB - 5400 rpm
606 Points ∼5% -11%
1280x720 Performance GPU
Toshiba Satellite U840T-101
HD Graphics 4000, 3337U, Toshiba MQ01ABF050
590 Points ∼4%
Gigabyte S1185
HD Graphics 4000, 3337U, Phison SSG128GPTC0-S81
511 Points ∼3% -13%
HP Envy TouchSmart 4-1102sg
HD Graphics 4000, 3317U, 500 GB - 5400 rpm
523 Points ∼3% -11%
3DMark (2013)
1920x1080 Fire Strike Standard Score
Toshiba Satellite U840T-101
HD Graphics 4000, 3337U, Toshiba MQ01ABF050
581 Points ∼6%
Gigabyte S1185
HD Graphics 4000, 3337U, Phison SSG128GPTC0-S81
387 Points ∼4% -33%
Wortmann Terra Mobile Pad 1160 Pro
HD Graphics 4000, 3337U, 128 GB SATA SSD
407 Points ∼4% -30%
Lenovo IdeaPad U430 Touch 59372369
GeForce GT 730M, 4200U, Seagate ST500LX005-1CW162 500 GB + 16 GB Flash
920 Points ∼10% +58%
1920x1080 Fire Strike Standard Graphics
Toshiba Satellite U840T-101
HD Graphics 4000, 3337U, Toshiba MQ01ABF050
628 Points ∼5%
Gigabyte S1185
HD Graphics 4000, 3337U, Phison SSG128GPTC0-S81
414 Points ∼3% -34%
Wortmann Terra Mobile Pad 1160 Pro
HD Graphics 4000, 3337U, 128 GB SATA SSD
440 Points ∼4% -30%
Lenovo IdeaPad U430 Touch 59372369
GeForce GT 730M, 4200U, Seagate ST500LX005-1CW162 500 GB + 16 GB Flash
1012 Points ∼8% +61%
3D Mark
3DMark 059176 points
3DMark 06
 1280x1024
6057 points
3DMark Vantage3665 points
3DMark 11683 points
3DMark Ice Storm39817 points
3DMark Cloud Gate3983 points
3DMark Fire Strike581 points
3DMark Fire Strike Extreme293 points
Help

Gaming Performance

Games from the Windows Store present no problem for the U840T-101. It looks different with current 3D titles. Games with elaborate textures are simply too much of a good thing and are playable (in the best case) only with reduced resolution and minimal details.

low med.high ultra
BioShock Infinite (2013) 32.517.415.3fps
Total War: Rome II (2013) 29.921.6fps
F1 2013 (2013) 342824fps

Emissions

Wie wir testen - Emissionen

System Noise

The noise development of the ultrabook is moderate. In idle use, the measured sound pressure lies between 30.4 and 32 dB(A). Still, we could always hear the hard drive clattering away. During longer copying processes, the HDD adds its own bothersome ticking noise.

Under load, the levels increase to up to 41.9 dB(A) and become clearly audible. The fan rotates very frequently, so that this noise becomes distracting after a while. Still, this level of noise is seldom heard in everyday use; we reached it only with full use of both CPU and GPU.

Noise Level

Idle 30.4 / 30.4 / 32.0 dB(A)
HDD 31.2 dB(A)
Load 36.0 / 41.9 dB(A)
 
    30 dB
silent
40 dB
audible
50 dB
loud
 
min: , med: , max:    Voltcraft sl-320 (15 cm distance)

Temperature

Stress test: 3337U @ 1.8 GHz, HD 4000 @ 900 MHz
Stress test: 3337U @ 1.8 GHz, HD 4000 @ 900 MHz

The surface temperatures of the Toshiba Satellite U840T-101 are warm to the touch, even in idle use, and reach a height of 37.4 °C (99.32 °F). In comparison, the HP Envy stays the coolest (max. 34.1 °C/93.38 °F).

Under full load, which we simulated with the simultaneous use of Prime95 and FurMark, the temperatures rise to a striking maximum value of 54.1 °C (129.38 °F) on the underside in the area of the fan outlet. In such a situation, use on the lap becomes extremely uncomfortable. On the upper side, the measurements above the keyboard rise to up to 53.2 °C (127.76 °F). Those who set their hands there, in order to use the touch screen, will not leave them there for long. Still, it should be noted that this presents an extreme scenario that is seldom achieved in practice.

In our stress test, the cycling performance of the processor and graphics system will be illuminated. Here we also used Prime95 and FurMark simultaneously and let the system run under this load for at least an hour. The CPU throttles back fairly quickly and falls back to the base speed of 1.8 GHz, and the GPU offers only 900 MHz. Still, we could not detect a severe throttling. The subsequent 3DMark 06 test (5,918 points) reached just slightly under the values (6,057 points) which were achieved in cold conditions.

 31.3 °C32.2 °C27.0 °C 
 30.1 °C31.3 °C26.6 °C 
 25.2 °C24.0 °C25.0 °C 
 
31.8 °C27.4 °C36.2 °C
26.7 °C37.8 °C33.4 °C
24.8 °C26.1 °C26.6 °C
Maximum: 32.2 °C
Average: 28.1 °C
 Maximum: 37.8 °C
Average: 30.1 °C
Power Supply (max.)  31.0 °C | Room Temperature 21.7 °C | Voltcraft IR-360

Speakers

Both stereo speakers are enhanced by SRS Premium Sound 3D and can be quite loud. The midrange is almost unavailable and the bass is quite thin but audible. Unfortunately, the highs are somewhat muffled, which sounds especially bad at a high volume. The equalizer has some effect, but we still could not hear a clear tone.

For occasional sound output, the built-in system is certainly sufficient, but for multimedia usage, there can be no question. The audio jack works flawlessly.

Energy Management

Wie wir testen - Akkulaufzeit

Power Consumption

The Satellite U840T-101's power consumption lies between 6.5 and 10.8 Watts in idle use, eye to eye with that of the Haswell competitor IdeaPad U430 Touch (6.7–10.6 W) and markedly under that of Envy TouchSmart (7.3–16.4 W).

Under load, the usage values climb to up to 42.5 W. Despite the markedly stronger graphics system, the Lenovo U430 requires just three Watts more. While turned off (0.2 W) and on standby mode (0.3 W), the measurements of our test product are slightly high, but still within an acceptable range. The power cord is a bit lean with a nominal capacity of 45 W, even if its dimensions are adequate.

Power consumption

Off / Standby 0.2 / 0.3 Watt
Idle 6.5 / 10.6 / 10.8 Watt
Load 40.1 / 42.5 Watt
 
Key: min: , med: , max:         Voltcraft VC 940

Battery Life

long load times
long load times

The Toshiba Satellite U840T-101's energy storage reaches 52 Wh. With minimal panel brightness and deactivated communications modules, the ultrabook achieves a maximum run time of seven solid hours in the Battery Eater Reader’s Test. In the opposite scenario, with maximum display brightness and all power consumers activated, we ascertained the minimum run time. We made use of the Battery Eater Classic Test in order to drain the battery as quickly as possible, which we managed in 2 hours, 43 minutes.

The "surfing over WLAN" test is nearer to practical usage requirements. With an appropriate panel brightness of 150 cd/m², a new website is loaded every 40 seconds using a browser script. Here the test product holds out for just about four hours, running for a markedly shorter time than the competitors from Lenovo (5 hours, 29 minutes) and HP (5 hours, 45 minutes).

The battery requires a long time to fully charge. A charge of 95% took 3.5 hours to reach. In order to fill the extra five percent, we had to wait 21 additional hours. This should actually be scored positively, since it protects the chemical composition of the battery and increases its lifespan.

Battery runtime
Idle (without WLAN, min brightness)
7h 03min
WiFi Surfing
4h 03min
Load (maximum brightness)
2h 43min

Verdict

Wie wir testen - Fazit

In Review: Toshiba Satellite U840T-101.
In Review: Toshiba Satellite U840T-101.

The Toshiba Satellite U840T-101 is a high-performance ultrabook with tidy workmanship. The fact that it does not employ Intel's current processor generation is no detriment to its performance. The built-in Core i5-3337U achieves the same values as the newer i5-4200U in synthetic benchmarks. The test product only loses a feather from its cap in graphics performance, but with an HD 4000, it is still well equipped compared to other machines.

Toshiba's ultrabook would not actually be that bad a machine, except that the display is comparatively dark and the viewing angle stability seldom allows for flawless viewing. Moreover, the fact that the Japanese firm decided not to spring for a Gigabit LAN port does not exactly recommend it either.

Those who like to watch a film or work with graphics while on the run should steer clear of this notebook. But if communication features and office use are the main considerations, the U840T can still be the right choice.

Test model provided by ...
static version load dynamic

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In Review: Toshiba Satellite U840T-101. Test product provided by:
In Review: Toshiba Satellite U840T-101. Test product provided by:

Specifications

Toshiba Satellite U840T-101

:: Processor
:: Mainboard
Intel HM77 (Panther Point)
:: Memory
8192 MB, Dual-Channel, PC3-12800 DDR3, 1.600 MHz, one RAM module occupied, 4 GB soldered in
:: Graphics adapter
Intel HD Graphics 4000, Core: 350 - 1.100 MHz, IGP, Shared Memory, 9.17.10.3040
:: Display
14.0 inch 16:9, 1366x768 pixel, capacitive, AU Optronics B140XW01 V0, TN LED, glossy: yes
:: Harddisk
Toshiba MQ01ABF050, 500 GB includes 32 GB Chaching SSD Samsung MZMPC032HBCD, 417 GB free
:: Soundcard
Intel Cougar Point PCH - High Definition Audio Controller
:: Connections
2 USB 2.0, 1 USB 3.0, 1 HDMI, 1 Kensington Lock, Audio Connections: one microphone and one headphone jack, Card Reader: SD up to 64 GB, MMC up to 2 GB, Sensors: brightness sensor, Wireless Display (WiDi)
:: Networking
Atheros AR8162/8166/8168 PCI-E Fast Ethernet (10/100MBit), Intel Centrino Wireless-N 2230 (b g n ), 4.0 + LE Bluetooth
:: Size
height x width x depth (in mm): 20.7 x 342 x 232
:: Weight
1.736 kg Power Supply: 0.185 kg
:: Battery
52 Wh Lithium-Polymer, 6 cells
Battery runtime (according to manufacturer): 336 min
:: Price
999 Euro
:: Operating System
Microsoft Windows 8 64 Bit
:: Additional features
Webcam: 0.9 MP (1.280 x 720 Pixel), Speakers: two stereo speakers, enhanced by SRS Premium Sound 3D, Keyboard: Chiclet, Keyboard Light: yes, power cord (45 W), various Toshiba Tools, McAfee IS and Microsoft Office 365 (each with 30 days of the test version), Bloatware, 12 Months Warranty

 

The aluminum-encased lid makes a good impression.
The aluminum-encased lid makes a good impression.
maximum opening angle
maximum opening angle
The touchscreen has a diagonal of 14 inches.
The touchscreen has a diagonal of 14 inches.
The panel is quite dark and displays at 1,366 x 768 pixels.
The panel is quite dark and displays at 1,366 x 768 pixels.
The screen suffices for web surfing and office use.
The screen suffices for web surfing and office use.
The webcam has a resolution of 0.9 MP (1,280 x 720 pixels) and ripples badly.
The webcam has a resolution of 0.9 MP (1,280 x 720 pixels) and ripples badly.
The power key is pleasantly shaped and lit.
The power key is pleasantly shaped and lit.
Weak stroke and missing feedback: It gets better.
Weak stroke and missing feedback: It gets better.
LEDs provide information on the ultrabook's condition.
LEDs provide information on the ultrabook's condition.
The array of the ports is good.
The array of the ports is good.
The LAN port transfers data at a maximum speed of 100 MBit/s.
The LAN port transfers data at a maximum speed of 100 MBit/s.
The Core i5 ensures good performance.
The Core i5 ensures good performance.
The underside is made of plastic.
The underside is made of plastic.

Similar Notebooks from a different Manufacturer

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Links

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Price Comparison

Pro

+High-performance ULV package
+full performance even on battery
+Tidy workmanship
+Backlit keyboard
+8 GB RAM
+Touchscreen ...
 

Contra

-... with mediocre swipe features
-Display is too dark
-Viewing angles are too unstable and cause color inversion too quickly
-No Gigabit LAN
-Heavy input devices

Shortcut

What we liked

The performance stats of the ultrabook check out. Both CPU and GPU deliver good performance, even when the device is disconnected from power.

What we'd like to see

More light! The display could have been brighter, but the narrow viewing angles and the panel's marked blue tint bothered us even more.

What surprises us

Why Toshiba relies on Fast Ethernet rather than gigabit Ethernet ports is incomprehensible.

The competition

The competitors are, among others, Lenovo IdeaPad U430 Touch, Acer Aspire TimelineUltra M5-481TG, Asus VivoBook S551LB-CJ026H and HP Envy TouchSmart 4-1102sg.

Rating

Toshiba Satellite U840T-101
11/19/2013 v4
Daniel Schmidt

Chassis
81 / 98 → 83%
Keyboard
66%
Pointing Device
80%
Connectivity
66%