Toshiba Portégé Z830 review

Price when reviewed

Most manufacturers are confidently aiming their Ultrabooks at the consumer market, but Toshiba’s Portégé Z830 bucks the trend. Squeezing business-friendly features into a millimetres-thick chassis, this is the executive Ultrabook that every executive has been waiting for.

It’s no surprise to find that the Portégé Z830 is slim and light – such attributes are the very currency of the Ultrabook – but Toshiba has done a sterling job with the design. Weighing in at just 1.09kg, the Toshiba is disconcertingly light, even by the standards of its peers. And yet, somehow, it still manages to feel solid enough to inspire confidence. The base barely flexes at all, and while the lid is altogether more malleable, you have to prod viciously on it before any pressure impinges on the delicate LCD panel within.

Toshiba Portégé Z830 - front

Visually, it’s less successful. Where other Ultrabooks trade on their striking good looks, the Toshiba’s dark grey chassis looks rather ordinary. What it lacks in style, however, it more than makes up for with sheer practicality. You’ll find a USB 3 port on its right flank; an SD card reader, headphone and microphone sockets on its left. It crams even more along its rear edge, adding two USB 2 ports, Gigabit Ethernet, D-SUB and HDMI.

With a fingerprint reader nestling between the two touchpad buttons, and a TPM 1.2 module inside, security is also top of the Portégé Z830’s priorities. Wireless connectivity is good, too, stretching to dual-band 802.11n and Bluetooth 3, but the current model lacks 3G. Thankfully, Toshiba has confirmed that there’s room in the chassis for future models to accommodate 3G.

Toshiba Portégé Z830 - rear

This, the top-of-the-range model, has precious little lacking elsewhere. It comes with a 1.7Ghz Core i5 processor, 4GB of RAM, a 128GB SSD and the Intel QM67 chipset throws in vPro support for good measure. It all makes for a seriously nippy machine. Applications spring into view within seconds, and the low-voltage processor ploughs through even intense video editing without breaking a sweat.

Battery life is great – the Toshiba’s non user-replaceable battery lasted 8hrs 3mins in our light usage battery test – but the Core i5 processor is more than capable of stepping up a gear. With a result of 0.6 in our Real World Benchmarks, the Portégé Z830 is a featherweight that packs a mighty punch. So mighty, in fact, that we found the area above the keyboard and around the rear cooling vent getting rather warm with extended use. Squeezing this much power into such a dainty slice does, after all, have its downsides.


Warranty1yr collect and return

Physical specifications

Dimensions316 x 227 x 16mm (WDH)
Travelling weight1.4kg

Processor and memory

ProcessorIntel Core i5-2557M
Motherboard chipsetIntel QM67 Express
RAM capacity4.00GB
Memory typeDDR3
SODIMM sockets free0
SODIMM sockets total1

Screen and video

Screen size13.3in
Resolution screen horizontal1,366
Resolution screen vertical768
Resolution1366 x 768
Graphics chipsetIntel HD Graphics 3000
Graphics card RAMN/A
VGA (D-SUB) outputs1
HDMI outputs1
S-Video outputs0
DVI-I outputs0
DVI-D outputs0
DisplayPort outputs0


Spindle speedN/A
Internal disk interfaceSATA/600
Optical disc technologyN/A
Optical driveN/A
Replacement battery price inc VAT£0


Wired adapter speed1,000Mbits/sec
802.11a supportyes
802.11b supportyes
802.11g supportyes
802.11 draft-n supportyes
Integrated 3G adapterno
Bluetooth supportyes

Other Features

Wireless hardware on/off switchno
Wireless key-combination switchyes
ExpressCard34 slots0
ExpressCard54 slots0
PC Card slots0
USB ports (downstream)2
FireWire ports0
PS/2 mouse portno
9-pin serial ports0
Parallel ports0
Optical S/PDIF audio output ports0
Electrical S/PDIF audio ports0
3.5mm audio jacks2
SD card readeryes
Memory Stick readerno
MMC (multimedia card) readerno
Smart Media readerno
Compact Flash readerno
xD-card readerno
Pointing device typeTouchpad
Audio chipsetRealtek HD Audio
Hardware volume control?no
Integrated microphone?yes
Integrated webcam?yes
Camera megapixel rating1.3mp
Fingerprint readeryes
Smartcard readerno
Carry caseno

Battery and performance tests

Battery life, light use8hr 3min
Overall Real World Benchmark score0.60
Responsiveness score0.72
Media score0.62
Multitasking score0.45

Operating system and software

Operating systemWindows 7 Professional 64-bit
OS familyWindows 7
Recovery methodRecovery partition
Software suppliedN/A

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