122 of 130 people found the following review helpful
The Toshiba Satellite C55D-A5240NR is an inexpensive laptop with an AMD processor and 4GB of memory, running Windows 8 64-bit as an operating system. Frankly, the downfall in this configuration is the 4GB of memory, but this can be remedied, as can the lack of Bluetooth.
For someone who isn't into games requiring fast, responsive graphics, this basic laptop would be a good choice. Good build quality, nice 15.6" display (1366x768 (HD), 16:9 aspect ratio, Supports 720p content), built-in media card reader, lightweight body (only 5.2 pounds) and the perks of HDMI, webcam with built-in microphone, and (1) USB 3.0 (you also have 2 USB 2.0) made me smile. The inclusion of the DVD drive (often omitted on lightweight laptops these days) was also a nice perk.
Toshiba says it has 'enhanced sound', but I didn't notice this to be the case. I added speakers via the line-in port (used for headphones), and later decided to add a Kinivo BTD-300 Bluetooth 3.0 USB adapter - For Windows 8 / Windows 7 / Windows XP / Vista, Mac OS 10.3.9 or Later, which is a cheap addition that gives this laptop the Bluetooth capabilities it lacks out of the box.
I then added Bluetooth speakers for additional 'enhanced sound' that made me happy. My speaker choices: (NEW) AYL BSPK202 Portable Bluetooth Speaker Set with Built in Speakerphone + 8 hour Rechargeable Battery and Enhanced Bass Resonator + 3 Year Warranty or (NEW) AYL Mini Touch BoomBox Portable Wireless Bluetooth Speaker with Built in Speakerphone + 8 hour Rechargeable Battery + 3 Year Warranty - Black. You can also use Bluetooth headphones with the adapter installed. I've used my Bose AE2w Bluetooth Headphones - Black via this method, without a problem.
This laptop isn't high-end. It doesn't have a back-lit keyboard, but it is full-sized and includes 10-key. It's screen resolution is average, and the battery life on a 6-cell is about 4 hours depending upon the type of usage. You can watch Netflix, Skype, Facebook, play online games, email and surf the Web. You can also edit photos and upload videos to YouTube. It's a utilitarian laptop, that anyone can afford.
The Toshiba won't be for gamers or those who intend to edit video. The graphics and the memory are lacking, and AMD processors (while the can work fine for this purpose...) take a back seat to Intel for this purpose in my opinion.
If you are looking for a solid choice for a basic laptop that's thin, lightweight, and will allow you to study, work and play for about three hundred bucks, this is a good choice!
I would suggest adding more memory though, as the basic configuration of 4GB is barely enough to run the operating system. This is unfortunately pretty much the standard with laptops in this price range, and how the manufacturers can offer them so cheaply. This laptop can be expanded to 16GB of memory, which is ideal for anyone wanting to get the most performance, but certainly not necessary. At 8GB (doubling the current configuration), you should see a noticeable performance boost.
To upgrade, I suggest either taking it to a local shop (you'll probably pay more than doing it yourself) or opening up the back to reveal the memory slots. There are (2), each with 2GB sticks of DDR3 1600MHz memory. You will need to purchase a kit with 2 sticks of 4GB (total 8GB) for about sixty to eighty bucks to do the upgrade. I suggest you look at what memory is installed first (brand, part number, speed) to verify what's installed prior to the upgrade. Sometimes this can vary, depending upon where your laptop was built.
I upgraded using this kit: Crucial 8GB Kit (4GBx2) DDR3 1600 MT/s (PC3-12800) CL11 SODIMM 204-Pin 1.35V/1.5V Notebook Memory Modules CT2CP51264BF160B. However you can (see comments) add one compatible (any brand) stick of 4GB to the existing 4GB stick for a total of 8GB. NOTE: I like to add two of the same brand and size for best performance, but some argue this is not necessary. I got the 8GB kit for less than I could have gotten 4GB of Samsung memory, so I decided to do it this way and put the Samsung part into another laptop.
Something that Toshiba did which surprised me. Despite having only a 1066Mhz data transfer rate on the installed motherboard per Toshiba's specs, they've installed memory with a 1600Mhz speed. This PC will never be able to attain that speed due to the limitations of the installed hardware, even with the faster memory, but adding compatible 1600Mhz speed memory is the way to go as it will make for a smooth running system and there's no real price issue.
If you prefer to add an additional 4GB of memory (for a total of 8GB with the existing stick (which for most appears to be a Samsung part) you may want to use: Crucial 4GB Single DDR3 1600 MT/s (PC3-12800) CL11 SODIMM 204-Pin 1.35V/1.5V Notebook Memory Module CT51264BF160B which costs much less than the existing Samsung module, yet works the same.
Upgrading the memory is not tough, so don't be afraid to do it yourself. Just take your time (look at a few tutorials on YouTube), make sure you're grounded and not on carpet when you open up the case to prevent harmful static which can ruin parts.
So if you want a basic laptop with potential for speediness with an upgrade, snap this one up.
UPDATE: 9/17/13 - TIP - Recovery Drive to USB
To save yourself some potential grief with ANY Windows 8 PC, think about making a recovery drive from a 32GB USB flash drive (you could do it with less, but to include the recovery partition from the hard drive get the 32GB stick). It's easy! In Windows 8 use the Search box and type in 'recovery drive'. You will see 'Create a Recovery Drive'. Follow the directions and then you'll have an essential back-up of the operating system and drivers, if needed for a reboot when Windows has failed for some unknown reason. Store it somewhere safe and continue to do system back-ups (not the same thing...) about once a week.
79 of 87 people found the following review helpful
on July 29, 2013
I only wanted a laptop to use gmail, facebook, spotify, netflix, office, skype... You can use all this stuff with this Toshiba without problems. Windows 8 was hard at first, but now I get used to it. Buy this laptop and save your money for a trip. It also has an USB 3.0 port, a HDMI port and a DVD device.
102 of 121 people found the following review helpful
on July 5, 2013
We talked with a computer guy and this had everything we were looking for. We would've preferred windows 7 since everyone complains about windows 8 but really after messing around a bit with it, its not that bad if your a techy person. If your not comfortable with tablets and smart phones then i would stay a way a look for a windows 7 computer. This was easy to set up and it has a desktop app which is nice just missing the start button so it still is different than your usual desktop.
29 of 33 people found the following review helpful
on August 20, 2013
This fine piece of machinery, while not the best laptop in the world, has proven to be extremely durable. Its had its share of falls, including some pretty bad ones. But Last night, I fell asleep on Skype on a top bunk in my barracks room. I woke up in the middle of the night, because I had kicked it in my sleep. It hit a wall, and crashed down on the floor. I woke up immediately afraid to find a floor full of broken pieces and a cracked screen. Nope, nothing but a perfectly working laptop. Like I said, its not the fastest laptop, and its not the best for games, but if you want a durable dependable laptop that works, this one is for you.
21 of 24 people found the following review helpful
on August 22, 2013
This is a really nice computer for the basic, every day tasks that someone would want to do. Browsing the web, checking email, typing up documents, chatting on Skype. Everyday task like these are what this computer is for. Don't buy this computer and expect high speed video editing and rendering, or high-end gaming because this won't do you any good. It does have an AMD Radeon 7310 graphics card, so it can do very, very light gaming, but I would not just purchase this computer just for that purpose. The CPU is a dual core running at 1.4 ghz, so it's not the fastest processor for gaming. I personally think the speakers sound a bit low also.
So what are the pros of this laptop? It's very inexpensive compared to other laptops made for the same purpose. It's lightweight, and has an impressive battery life for a laptop. The keyboard is awesome, sleek, and very comfortable to type on. A very spacey 500GB hard drive makes for a lot of storage. Although, there are many people who despise Windows 8, I actually like it. The apps are a nice touch, and there's still the traditional desktop view everyone is familiar with. Yes, it takes awhile to get used to, but once you do, it's a cool operating system. Not to mention, very quick boot up and shut down times. It comes with fast, UBS 3.0, an HDMI out port to connect to your HD television or monitor, and a nice HD display. At $330.00, this computer is a great deal.
41 of 55 people found the following review helpful
on August 5, 2013
This laptop was a pain at first. The Windows 8 was hard to figure out, especially with no detailed instructions how to use the new Windows 8. I couldn't find anything. I took a couple of days just looking through everything and figuring it all out. A friend gave me some pointers, too. I didn't like it, and still would rather have a different Windows; but, I have gotten used to it. The IE10 was a disaster. I think it had a bug in it or something. Wouldn't let me go on websites and kept telling me that the script was too long. Ads kept coming up that didn't look trust worthy, even from Norton(?). I finally deleted it from my desktop. Kept it in the C drive just to make sure there weren't files I needed. Hope it's contained there and won't escape. I had to download Firefox and that works so much better. Sorry IE, I've always used it, but now I have to use Firefox. Now that I have arranged things, deleted a lot of the Tiles, downloaded a Start Button and just plain made it mine, I do like it. Not the fastest one around, should have bought one that had a faster processor. But, it's ok and I have begun to enjoy it. If I were to buy another one, as I said, i'd buy a faster one.
9 of 11 people found the following review helpful
on August 30, 2013
Just to get this straight, this is not at all a gaming laptop.. I just got this computer about 30 minutes ago, and im already pretty impressed by it, I absolutely love this keyboard , its very sleek, and does not make a loud sound when you press it, perfect for in the library when im studying, Yes, im a college student. I still don't know how to use Windows 8 100% just yet, its a bit weird, but ill get used to it.. Im a Windows Vista and 7 user so im very used to having the START button on the bottom left, this laptop does not have that, but a short way of bypassing that is to make shortcuts for all the files you would normally find their like the my computer link. So that's not really the end of the world. I would recommend buying the mouse with this laptop because the touch pad in my opinion is very annoying, The size of the screen is perfect for what ill be using it for, like windows office word, and for emails and all that kind of stuff, The reason why I gave it 4 stars instead of 5 is because of the touch pad, also because at first it was very laggy with the internet, but after it started running a bit, it started to work smooth, also an Amazing feature, IT INSTALLS ALL THE PATCHES AND APPLICATIONS FOR YOU!! what a lovely thing Windows 8 gives you. So overall very good laptop, I would recommend it to other people, but again, this is for Business or School use only, not for gaming.
Update: So I got my Microsoft Wireless Mobile Mouse 4000, and it makes the laptop a lot better in my opinion. Now that I have the mouse, I enjoy the laptop a lot more, and im going to give it a 5 star.
10 of 13 people found the following review helpful
on August 10, 2013
I am having so much fun discovering new things with windows 8. I do not think I could find a better computer for the price. So far, So good !
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on September 10, 2013
I love Toshiba laptops. I accidently spilled a whole big gulp glass of water in the keyboard of my old toshiba and after replacing the keyboard it still works! My next toshiba worked for 10 years before the led light went out on the screen. It was time to get a new one- toshiba of course.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on May 23, 2014
Toshiba low-end laptops are pure garbage. Flimsy, cheap, unreliable, and built with the cheapest components available. Save your money and spend a bit more on something else not built by Toshiba. Best case scenario, you might get 6-12 months out of your laptop before things start to fail. Worse case scenario (as I've just experienced), your laptop will last a matter of weeks before the lights go out. And unfortunately for the buyer, Toshiba often refuses to meet their own warranty obligations. Considering how cheap the laptops are, they don't want to help you, or fix the laptop. They would lose money otherwise. So if you send it in for repairs, like they'll inevitably recommend, you'll find yourself being asked to pay elaborate sums of money because the 'scope of work' is not within the boundaries of the original warranty agreement. This of course is not true. Toshiba is simply trying to force the added costs of warranty repairs down the throats of uninformed customers. Their laptops are cheap, but they won't actually save you any money in the long run.
Save your money. Don't buy Toshiba. Consider any laptops made by Toshiba as being purely disposable, or built for third word countries with no consumer protection laws.