Toshiba Qosmio G50-10H notebook

The Toshiba Qosmio range of high-end multimedia notebooks has always been a little bit different, as it tries to mix unique style with some of the latest mobile technologies around.

The Toshiba Qosmio G50-10H is a hulking 5kg in weight and isn’t the kind of machine you’ll want to carry around. However, it is intended for use as a desktop replacement and home media centre and to this end it certainly works.

The 18.4-inch Super-TFT has a native resolution of 1920 x 1080 pixels so is perfect for high-definition movies. So it’s such a pity that Toshiba still hasn’t gotten over the format wars and signed up for a Blu-ray drive. The machine offers upscaling of normal DVDs, which is a reasonable compromise, but with a fantastic screen offering a 16:9 aspect ratio - which means you can watch movies in their native format - having Full HD support would have been nice.

A neat feature of this machine is Gesture Control, which works in conjunction with the webcam above the screen and allows you to access you files and start programs at the wave of your hand. In reality, it takes a little getting used to and it’s not without its flaws but we quite liked using it, as it makes pausing movies and music easy.

The Nvidia GeForce 9600M GT handles graphics, which is the latest high-end card for consumers. This means you’ll be able to play mainstream games with most of the features turned to full and all online games will certainly run smoothly. However, high-end games will still offer potential lag problems.

As you would expect of Toshiba’s premier multimedia machine, the specification is something a little special. Powered by an Intel Core 2 Duo 9400, you’ll find the 2.53GHz processor is a quad-core offering and is capable of handling just about anything. The 3072MB of memory runs at 1066MHz, the same as the FSB of the chipset, which is the fastest speed you can attain on any notebook at present.

Then there is the addition of two hard drives that combine to offer 640GB of space. These can be set up in a RAID configuration if you like, so you’ll always have a copy of the files from your primary drive.

So, it’s certainly got the speeds and feeds but does it actually work? Thankfully, the answer is yes, as we found the G50 to be one of the quickest and most powerful machines we used to date. If you need raw processing power in a good-looking design, this is the notebook to look out for.

When it comes to extras you’ll Harman Kardon speakers offering decent sound quality, then there are the latest Gigabit Ethernet, 802.11n wireless LAN, four USB ports, ExpressCard and HDMI slots and there is even Bluetooth for hooking up to your mobile phone. It even delivers on battery life, as we managed to get well over 5 hours from the Qosmio.

Verdict

The Toshiba Qosmio G50-10H is a great machine and the asking price is fairly reasonable for the specification and features on offer. We enjoyed using it and would have made it a Hot Product but for one fact: no Blu-ray.