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Toshiba Libretto U100 review




Our Score:


I can still remember getting my hands on the origingal Toshiba Libretto. It was a Japanese import that Toshiba had supplied to Computer Buyer well before the UK launch, meaning that I had to contend with a Japanese keyboard and Windows installation, but even so, I couldn't help but be amazed at what Toshiba had achieved. Back in 1997 the idea of ultra-portable notebooks was still a pretty new concept, so when a tiny, fully functional PC arrived on the scene it was bound to cause a stir. But here in 2005 things are somewhat different. The ultra-portable notebook is commonplace, and mobile workers expect full functionality from a device as light as a feather. So how does the Libretto measure up in a modern environment?

One thing is for sure, the Libretto still gets a reaction when you take it out of your bag. Pulling such a small PC out in public always elicits curious glances and much over the shoulder peering. You see, even in today’s climate, the Libretto is still pretty small. Talking of size, let’s get the basics out of the way. The Libretto measures in at 210 x 165 x 33.4mm (WxDxH) and weighs a feather light 980g. Now that’s pretty impressive, but you should also consider that the Fujitsu-Siemens LifeBook P1510 weighs in at 1kg on the nose, while the super svelte Sony VAIO X505 weighs only 820g.

So, the Libretto isn’t the lightest mobile computer around, but it is very small. That said, it’s not as small as the Sony VAIO Type U or the OQO model 1, but then the former doesn’t have a keyboard and the latter has a qwerty thumb-board. But having a keyboard is one thing, having a usable keyboard is something else altogether.

Andy 3

August 6, 2008, 5:02 am

Unfortunatly, I could disagree more about the review. The Libretto is a marvellous little PC. I have owned one for quite a few years and it does everything I ask of it. Yes, the keyboard is small but you get used to it and I can type as fast as I do on a full sized keyboard.I am using the Libretto now to type this and I find the keys positive and very easy to use.

The Libretto goes everywhere with me. I use it with a aircard so email is always on, mobile IM, it plays my mp3's in the car via bluetooth and its my map(Google maps) It fits in my jacket pocket and has been worth its weight in gold by being able to download information immediately. It even acts as an alarm clock and wakes me up in the morning. I have looked at a few of the newer sub-notebooks, and frankly, can see no reason to change. No, it doesn't have built in webcam but have you tried mobile webcam outside of a 3G area in the uk? Pointless!

The only downside is Windows XP as an operating system. Its getting very slow, with lots of things loading on start up but thats my fault. I really should clear all the dross out cos it did load very quickly to start with.

It's been dropped, kicked and sat on and still works. It's the real deal for road warriors and still the best of the bunch, I think.

Bravo Toshiba!!!

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