Overall Performance

The Ivy Bridge CPU that beats at the heart of the Toshiba Satellite U845W isn't the fastest on the block, but it should certainly be adequate. Using a caching solution instead of a dedicated SSD is bound to hurt PCMark scores, but I did find in practice that it was a healthy step up from just having a straight mechanical hard disk in the system. You can at least feel the difference when using the U845W.

PCMark 7 - PCMarks

PCMark 7 - Lightweight

PCMark 7 - Productivity

PCMark 7 - Creativity

PCMark 7 - Entertainment

PCMark 7 - Computation

PCMark 7 - Storage

The lack of a dedicated SSD causes the U845W to jump around the charts a bit. PCMark Vantage should hopefully paint a clearer picture.

Futuremark PCMark Vantage

And there it is. Caching helps, but generally a dedicated SSD produces superior performance.

Futuremark 3DMark 11

Futuremark 3DMark Vantage

Futuremark 3DMark06

3DMark performance is pretty much where we'd expect it, even a bit better. As you'll see later on, Toshiba's thermal solution for the Satellite U845W is actually a very good one, and that extra thermal headroom is probably allowing the notebook to run in turbo modes for longer than some of the competing designs (as seen in 3DMark06).

Cinebench R11.5 - Single-Threaded Benchmark

Cinebench R11.5 - Multi-Threaded Benchmark

x264 HD Benchmark - First Pass

x264 HD Benchmark - Second Pass

The Satellite U845W and comparable U845 produce fairly consistent scores and are cetainly capable enough notebooks.

While ordinarily I eschew doing gaming benchmarking on HD 4000-equipped systems unless we just don't have enough scores, I'm making an exception with the U845W. The reason is a simple one: the appeal of potentially gaming at a 21:9 resolution. I will say that subjectively games do look really cool on the U845W, and that makes the lack of a dedicated graphics solution a little heartbreaking.

Batman: Arkham City - Value

Battlefield 3 - Value

Civilization V - Value

DiRT 3 - Value

Elder Scrolls: Skyrim - Value

Portal 2 - Value

Only Portal 2 offers truly playable performance, but it's worth noting that the increase in resolution doesn't seem to hurt the Ivy Bridge GPU too badly. If you're willing to bring settings even further down, there's a good chance you can make a few of the games here playable. That means the HD 4000 in the U845W will certainly do in a pinch, but I'd love to see Toshiba come out with a model that has even a low end 28nm die-shrunk Fermi in it. Something with just a little more kick than the HD 4000.

Around the Toshiba Satellite U845W Display, Battery, Noise, and Heat
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  • Subyman - Tuesday, October 16, 2012 - link

    It would have been nice to include a shot of what the desktop looks like on that screen. I've never seen Windows in 21:9. Looks like an interesting design, but I like my vertical space.
  • prime2515103 - Tuesday, October 16, 2012 - link

    I agree. Or at least something on the screen. It's as though they never turned it on.
  • inperfectdarkness - Saturday, October 27, 2012 - link

    that aspect ratio is distusting. i feel like i'm trying to fit in yoda's house just looking at the thing while it's OFF. for the love of god, can we please just go back to 16:10 permanently?
  • brvoigt - Tuesday, October 16, 2012 - link

    Looks more like 7:3 to me.
  • KineticHummus - Tuesday, October 16, 2012 - link

    they use 21:9 because its easier to relate to the industry standard 16:9. Yes 7:3 is technically more correct, but 21:9 is easier to compare.
  • ExarKun333 - Tuesday, October 16, 2012 - link

    What's next? 4:3 is now 12:9? Good grief...
  • lowlymarine - Wednesday, October 17, 2012 - link

    This is hardly new and unique. When was the last time you saw 15:9 referred to as 5:3, or to use the most common example, how often do you see 16:10 given as 8:5?

    4:3 is the exception rather than the rule, honestly.
  • iMacmatician - Wednesday, October 17, 2012 - link

    Okay, this is the first time I've heard of 15:9….
  • bwhalen - Thursday, October 18, 2012 - link

    Math class moment approaching here. If you divide 21:9 by 3 you get 7:3.

    To echo others comments, a screen grab while power was being applied would be good.
  • PhoenixEnigma - Tuesday, October 16, 2012 - link

    This seems like the perfect compact machine to have a dedicated number pad, which would have been a major plus in my books. Just look at all the extra space beside the keyboard - why not make use of it?

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