A decent budget laptop is easy to come by. Just head over to your favorite merchant’s website and you see hundreds of them. But finding the best one among all the notebooks is indeed the challenging task. We’re here to make your decision easier, this time with revealing the good and bad sides of Toshiba Satellite C55-B5297 laptop for you.
Toshiba Satellite C55-B5297 runs on Intel Core i3-3217U processor. The clock speed is 1.8GHz and core amount is two. It’s a bit older release, announced in 2012, but is still suitable for today’s tasks including Office work and entertainment use. The Core i3 also contains Intel HD 4000, a graphics engine good for low-level gaming.
The laptop comes with nice 6GB DDR3L memory. Once again, Toshiba says the RAM can’t be upgraded by the user, but it’s indeed possible with some tinkering. That said, the notebook should support maximum 8GB memory, so the RAM upgrade wouldn’t give a big performance boost anyway.
It’s a conventional 750GB hard drive that takes care of your storage needs. I’d say that for the price it’s okay – usually laptops come in the 500GB-1024GB range, with this model standing in the middle ground. Swapping the hard drive for SSD should be possible if you’re after speed over raw storage.
The system is powered by Windows 7 Professional. I regard this as a positive thing as I’m still not comfortable with Windows 8. I know many feel the same.
Display and graphics
A 15.6″ display with 1366×768 resolution is a basic screen you usually see in laptops of similar price. It does its job well for casual users, but leaves out some features like Full HD resolution that professionals might be looking for. For the 500 bucks price it’s still understandable option, and you’d have to shell out more money if you wanted a great 1920×1080 screen.
The Intel HD 4000 graphics engine can run some games fluently. Minecraft and CS:Go on low settings belong to that bunch. Newer titles like Battlefield 4 should reach around 30FPS which is playable. With most 2014 games, as long as you keep settings and resolution at bare minimum, you can expect at least 20 frames per seconds.
Toshiba Satellite C55-B5297 contains three USB ports in total. Two are USB 2.0 and one is USB 3.0. Typical for a Toshiba, both VGA and HDMI outputs are available, too. That means good support for different kind of monitors, including PC screens and HDTVs.
The 100Mbps Ethernet port and 802.11b/g/n WiFi allow you to connect Internet. To my knowledge, Bluetooth is not supported by default.
A 8x DVD burner is included in the laptop. So is a memory card reader for SD, SDHC, SDXC, miniSD, microSD and MMC cards.
For video conferencing, the Toshiba features a HD webcam and an integrated microphone.
Anything else to keep in mind?
Toshiba Satellite C55-B5297 weighs 4.8 pounds, not too much for a 15.6 incher. The 4-cell battery should allow for 4 hours running time with a single charge.
The non-backlit keyboard comes with 10-key numeric pad on the right.
If you don’t have a subscription for antivirus software, you can enjoy one month trial for Norton Internet Security bundled with this Toshiba.
To me Toshiba Satellite C55-B5297 looks like a typical 500 bucks laptop. It doesn’t really have any great disadvantages or advantages over its competitors. The laptop is good for everyday computing and rudimentary gaming, and offers alright portability with less than 5 pounds weight. For the current price it’s a decent buy.