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The Kira was always targeted at the MacBook Pro audience. That's not really changed, and the payoff is still the same – this is like a cheaper Windows-based MacBook without the crazy price point and insane polish. In terms of components, it's the Lenovo LaVie Z, but without the crazy lightness and with a much better battery life.
The Kira is, generally, pleasant to use, and it's an attractive machine to carry around with you. We liked its looks, its weight and its battery life more than we liked its screen – and we recognise that it's got some of the best PCMark 8 Home scores of any Ultrabook.
That dim screen still seems to be a problem across the Toshiba range, which is sad. It means that you won't be happy using this outdoors or in some office environments. Some people will find the keyboard a little annoying, so it's worth trying out the Kira before buying. The price is also a little disappointing, considering the value of the Asus Zenbook UX305, although it's not hugely out of whack for what you'd expect from an Ultrabook.
If this was the laptop we had to use for the next three years, we wouldn't be at all upset. It's so nicely made, long-lasting and smooth-running that we'd be quite happy keeping it until it fell apart – which will be a long time. The negatives – the ease of scratching, the dim screen, the price – all hurt, but don't stop the Kira being a damn fine example of an Ultrabook, albeit a relatively expensive one.
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