About 4 years ago I had purchased 2 laptop computers with extended warranties from Toshiba at CompUSA. While my laptop ran nicely, the one that I had purchased for my son had many problems… unfortunately the service at CompUSA was severely lacking and the repair shop was willy nilly at best with very little communication and a very disorganized staff.
With this in mind when my sons laptop died after the warranty was up we decided to purchase from Toshiba Direct, online, to avoid any department store hassles and theatrics. Since my son was paying for this with his allowance, he had a budget. After much discussion he opted for a Toshibal Satellite P100-ST1072 with a 1.6 GHz Intel Core 2 Duo Processor, 17” screen with a resolution of 1680X1050, WiFi, NVDIA GeForce Go 7600, 1024MB SDRAM, 100GB HDD 7200rpm S-ATA, etc.
Since we could not pick up a laptop with Windows XP and could not wait for the bugs to be cleared up with Vista we opted for Windows Vista Home Premium, hoping it would at least have less trouble than the basic version.
When it arrived, it did really look beautiful. It was also unbelievably light for a computer of its size.
The first thing that I noticed when I turned it on was that the screen resolution was absolutely gorgeous! It was much better than my old 17” Toshiba laptop that had the best resolution available at its time of purchase… and my son was very impressed with the fingerprint scanner, as it was something new to him.
This is where the wonder stopped.
There were so many updates that had to be done to that brand new laptop, out of the box, that it was tiring! Then, when I thought I was done, there were all sorts of incompatibilities with the installed hardware and software that I was going to sites to upload patches and uninstalling the factory drivers and installing updated ones… Still, there were conflicts… and several phone calls to Toshiba…
From here we had to download new software similar to that we were having trouble with to see if that would work, specifically movie playing software as the DVD player was not able to correctly play DVDs. Although this is not the main function of a laptop by any means, the screen resolution was specifically selected so that movies could be watched on the laptop in the best possible resolution… They could be watched, however the audio would lag behind the video in increasing increments, so we were watching one thing and listening to what just happened… Argh!
The computer was also lagging on games that had been played on the previous laptop that was much much slower and had a much less impressive graphics card than this new Toshiba. This was just unacceptable.
There were other annoyances as well, including the fact that the spy ware and antiviral protection that comes with our ISP (internet service provider) was not compatible with Vista, so that would have to be purchased separate.
The computer was basically OK for email and basic web surfing. Definitely not what one shells out almost $1, 500 for.
Overall the computer was a total disappointment. While I believe that a lot of the problems could be attributed to early troubles with a new OS (operating system - Vista), I feel that Toshiba should have either taken the time to ensure that the computer components were compatible with the new OS out of the box or they should have offered the laptop with Windows XP until Vista was readily able to be compatible with the laptop components out of the box.
The only good that came out of the situation was that Toshiba’s customer service was pretty good and they gave us a full refund on a customized order with no restocking fee. I wasn’t sure if they would give me any trouble with that by insisting on an exchange, but they had no problem at all refunding the money, which my son promptly put down on an iMac.