Toshiba Satellite L70-B-11C review

Can a 17.3-inch screen lift this Toshiba above the competition?

Toshiba Satellite L70-B-11C
This 17.3-inch laptop boasts a Core i5 processor

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The Toshiba Satellite L70-B-11C costs a little more than its rivals, but there's more bang for your buck available from this £599, or $935 (about AU$1,011) system. Its 17-inch screen is physically larger and has a higher resolution than the 15.6-inch panels included on rivals, and it's a better looking laptop than some of the other Toshiba efforts we've seen recently.

In other areas, the Toshiba doesn't better the competition. It's no faster in applications or games, with mediocre ergonomics, and build quality doesn't improve in the move to a 17.3-inch screen.

We liked

The screen didn't return the best benchmark results, but it's got good brightness and reasonable viewing angles, which means it's ideal for basic work and web browsing. That pairs well with the Core i5 processor, which has enough grunt for less intensive applications and multi-tasking.

It's a decent looking system, too: the champagne-coloured plastic stands out more than the metallic material used across many other Toshiba Satellite systems.

We disliked

The screen is good enough for basic computing, but it doesn't have the contrast or colour accuracy required for more demanding tasks. It's the same story with the internal components, which don't have enough grunt for intensive applications or high-end games. The speakers, too, aren't much cop – loud but bass-heavy.

The keyboard can be used for long-form writing and work, but it's not got enough travel or feedback to prove truly satisfying. Also, the trackpad's inconsistent buttons are an irritation.

Final verdict

The L70 has a better screen than the S50D, but the Core i5 processor can't match the APU inside the smaller Toshiba when it comes to getting the balance right between applications and games. Ergonomically, the larger laptop is thicker and heavier while offering no real improvement.

The Lenovo has similar performance inside a slimmer and more versatile chassis. Toshiba's larger L70 is only worth buying if the added screen resolution and quality is the prime consideration.

Mike has worked as a technology journalist for more than a decade and has written for most of the UK’s big technology titles alongside numerous global outlets. He loves PCs, laptops and any new hardware, and covers everything from the latest business trends to high-end gaming gear.