Toshiba NB305 Review
Launched in January 2010, the NB305 is a competent netbook. Weighing 1.33kg, it is very comparable in weight, dimensions and specifications to many of the other branded notebooks currently available. With an ample 3 usb ports, its pretty easy to connect multiple devices to the NB305, it would be nice however if it came with a HDMI display port as well as the standard VGA port.
It's predominantly a plastic construction and would probably not stand up to a drop to the floor of more than a few inches. It has a glossy screen which has both advantages and disadvantages. On the plus side, colours are vibrant and sharp, however it does mean that you observe more reflections, which is particularly a problem if you're using the netbook in a bright sunny area or outside. Battery life was seen to be around 7-8 hours with moderate brightness and lighting. When viewing a full screen video with maximum brightness and volume, battery life dropped to around 4 hours 30 minutes. The keyboard can be frustrating to use. Although the keys are well spaced out, it was noticed that, on occasion, key presses were not always registered. This isn't exactly a flaw, it just means it's necessary to ensure you hit the keys with greater force when typing. The enter key is also smaller than usual, and the backslash key is immediately above it. This can be slightly annoying when touch typing as the backslash key is hit when you think you're actually hitting the top of the enter key. Again this issue can be remedied with frequent use and a better knowledge of the layout of the keyboard.
Powered by an intel Atom N450 processor, the NB305 can handle most tasks adequately however it's not uncommon to see the 'thinking' animation when looking through a web page with lots going on, or when switching between multiple applications. The standard memory size is 1GB although it can be expanded to 2GB, which would likely increase the performance of the netbook quite substantially. Other standard features include a 250GB hard disk and a screen resolution of 1024x600, which if connected to an exterior display, can be 1400x1050. Typically the NB305 runs Windows 7 Starter edition.
When benchmark tested using the performance tester tool at passmark.com, the NB305 achieved a score of 235. This was essentially the same score achieved by the Samsung N150 - another compact netbook with similar specifications. When benchmark tested against the more up-to-date Acer Aspire One D255, the NB305 lost out to a score of 295. This isn't too surprising as the D255 uses the latest Atom N550 processor. In terms of actual performance however between machines, it's pretty hard to detect any difference.
The NB305 is a well designed and capable netbook allbeit with a few flaws in its keyboard construction. It'll be more than adequate for most uses and stands up very well when compared to alternative brand notebooks which are also currently available.
- Vivid screen colours
- Good size track pad with multi gestures
- Frustrating keyboard
- Glossy screen causes reflections