Toshiba sent over a PortÃƒÂ©gÃƒÂ© R600-s4201 for me to take a look at and I really dig this ultraportable so far. It’s very here in San Francisco, which is a rarity. Most homes here (including mine) don’t have air conditioning so I decided to work outdoors with the R600 for the afternoon.
The reason the Toshiba Portege R600 is great for working outdoors is because it has a transflective display. This means you can turn off the display’s backlight and sunlight actually illuminates the screen.
Usually the sun is my worst enemy when I try to work outdoors. Some PC manufacturers’ anti-glare screens do improve the situation by reducing reflections and increasing screen brightness, but this reduces battery life significantly. Toshiba’s solution does the exact opposite and improves battery life significantly.
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This is a quick video of what the display looks like outdoors on a sunny day with the backlight turned off. With the backlight turned off the display is unreadable indoors, but very easy to read outdoors.
The R600 is a true featherweight at less than 2.5 lbs. It comes with a 128GB SSD, DVD burner, 3GB of memory and a low-voltage 1.4GHz intel Core 2 Duo processor. The display is the most impressive thing about this device to me, but the $2,499 price tag may be hard to justify.