Toshiba Satellite C55-B5101 Review

May 25, 2015
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Toshiba is known for cheap but useful laptops. They’ve lately released yet new model, this time called Toshiba Satellite C55-B5101. That notebook follows the same pricing strategy – inexpensive – which has proved to work well with previous models. But how’s the case with this new release? Can even Toshiba create a decent laptop for this low price? Let’s see…


Toshiba Satellite C55-B5101 is powered by the Intel Celeron N2840 processor. That chip has two cores, 2.2GHz clock speed and 2.6GHz turbo. Those specs are not bad on paper, but in real life the performance is rather low. The N2840 receives around 1000 points in CPU Mark tests, whereas power efficient Core i3s get ~2500. However, the performance the N2840 offers is sufficient for simple things like web browsing and even video streaming. On the other hand, playing many 2014-2015 games would be too much for it.

The laptop has 4GB DDR3L memory installed. I consider 4GB the minimum acceptable amount these days. It is good for the aforementioned tasks, the system shouldn’t lag on light activities. And if you want more memory you’ll be glad to know 8GB is supported. However, as there is only 1 memory slot in total, you have to remove the 4GB module first.

The 500GB 5400RPM hard drive lets you store a lot of data (~100 000 images for example) on the computer, although compared to pricier models it’s both slow and small in storage. If you’re worried about the performance swapping the hard drive for an SSD should be possible.

Display and graphics

Toshiba Satellite C55-B5101 has a no frills display. Sized at 15.6 inches, it features 1366×768 resolution. That kind of a setup works for browsing and even watching some videos, but of course many people are used to Full HD and want nothing less. In that case though, you’d have to pay much more than this. Touch support is not enabled, you’ll have to use the Windows 8.1 with keyboard and trackpad.

The graphics engine, called Intel HD (Bay Trail), is integrated in the Celeron processor. Sad news for gamers, it’s a very poor engine, only capable of running very lightweight titles. For example, types like Battlefield 4 and Assassin’s Creed are too much for this Intel HD. On the other hand, games such as Minecraft, Sims 4 and Counter-Strike: Go will work fine at least on low details.


Toshiba Satellite C55-B5101 comes with three USB ports, one of them being USB 3.0 (on the right, identified by a blue connector). With the HDMI output you can plug in an HD television or a PC monitor.

Networking interfaces include a 10/100Mbps RJ-45 port and 802.11b/g/n WiFi + Bluetooth 4.0 card.

DVD burner is installed on the left hand side. There’s also SD/MMC card reader for transferring stuff from digital cameras and such.

The laptop sports a webcam and microphone that can be used with Skype video.

Some other things to keep in mind?

Toshiba Satellite C55-B5101 weighs 4.85 pounds, which I consider average (or perhaps bit below) of 15.6″ laptops. In addition, it has a thickness of 1.05 inches. The 4-cell Li-ion battery should be a good one on this model, giving around 6 hours of use with WiFi browsing.

The keyboard offers no backlit keys, although there’s a numpad installed on the right hand side.


I’d call Toshiba Satellite C55-B5101 a starter laptop. It has a basic Celeron processor, 4GB RAM and 15.6″ low resolution screen good for everyday activities in homes or maybe small offices. Gaming and heavier stuff won’t really work on it, but that’s of course true for any laptop this cheap. So, if you don’t require a lot of power but value inexpensive price more, I’d say you have a good reason to get this simple Toshiba notebook.

Not interested? Take a look at these laptops:

18 thoughts on “Toshiba Satellite C55-B5101 Review

  1. beyage

    how would u take off the back and can you replace the processor because i wont to upgrade this laptop for gaming.Thanks for helping

    1. Tech For Pennies Post author

      Hi Beyage. I’m pretty sure you can’t upgrade the CPU on this model. Even if you could, processor replacement wouldn’t help much for gaming. It’s a dedicated graphics card you would need, but installing one here is not possible, either. In another words, if you want a decent gaming laptop, you have to look for models in +$700 price range.

    2. Manny

      I have this laptop and upgraded the hard drive to a samsung 256ssd. You have to remove all screws on the back its like 15 then take the back peace off. Then slide the old HD out and plug in the new one. That simple. Good luck

    3. Manny

      But i dont think you can replace the processor at least i havnt tried it.

  2. beyage

    i still want to upgrade the ram on it but i dont know how to take off the back

    1. Tech For Pennies Post author

      The laptop can easily play Elsword. Also other older MMORPGs work on it, such as World of Warcraft. You might want to keep low or medium settings to get playable frame rates.

    1. Tech For Pennies Post author

      Hi Rick. Take a look at this video. As you can see, the game is (barely) playable but not enjoyable. This is due to poor graphics card. So the question is, can you stand such a low FPS or will it be too frustrating? If the latter, you’ll have to go for a more expensive model I’m afraid.

  3. Kirito Jaurigue

    Can that Laptop easily break? How strong is that laptop’s durability. sorry i’m just new since i bought that Laptop last 3 days ago.

    1. Tech For Pennies Post author

      Don’t smash it to the floor and you’ll do fine :) These cheaper notebooks are often not the most durable ones, but handling it with common sense will take you far.

  4. Kirito Jaurigue

    Can the graphic card can be replace by any Nvidia Graphic card??

    1. Tech For Pennies Post author

      It’s not possible to replace the integrated graphics engine in this machine. It’s also not possible to add any kind of dedicated graphics card here. You’ll have to do with the default one, which is Intel HD Graphics, the Bay Trail version.

  5. Susan

    Will I be able to play my Facebook games on this laptop? I just ordered one today, but didn’t look at any reviews. I owned a Toshiba laptop a few years ago and didn’t have any problems with it.

    1. Tech For Pennies Post author

      Sure Susan, this Toshiba – like any laptop – can play Facebook games no problem. It’s the installable Windows games like GTA 5 that require a lot of system performance, but those Facebook based ones work on any computer because they are very lightweight.

  6. Charlesguy64

    I honestly disagree with you. As someone who’s stuck with this crap, I think it’s completely useless. (Yes even for office work.) This only further drives home the fact that you have to break your wallet to get a PC worth a damn.


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