Which Toshiba Dynabook laptop is best?
There are countless lines of laptops available today with fancy marketing, flashy designs, novel hardware and exorbitant prices. Dynabook (formerly Toshiba) laptops are not among them. Instead of the cutting edge of design and innovative features, Dynabook laptops occupy a very utilitarian space. They sport relatively Spartan designs and straightforward yet often high-powered configurations.
The best one overall is the Toshiba Dynabook Tecra A50-J because it’s equipped with some of the most capable hardware currently available and costs less than comparable models from other manufacturers.
What to know before you buy a Toshiba Dynabook laptop
They’re meant for school and business use
They certainly won’t win any awards for style and you won’t find any outfitted with gaming-grade graphics cards. There aren’t even a ton of different configurations to choose from. Instead, Dynabook produces a relatively small family of laptops that are equipped with highly efficient, recently released hardware. Since they’re not particularly fancy, you can expect to get somewhat better value than you’d get with a razor-thin gaming laptop.
They offer a great price-to-performance ratio
With most laptops, you’ll have to make a significant investment to get components like 32 gigabytes of RAM or a terabyte of solid-state storage. That’s decidedly not true of Dynabook laptops. Case in point, the highest-performing Dynabook model boasts exactly those storage and memory specs, yet it costs considerably less than options from brands like Lenovo and Dell with similar hardware.
You can upgrade the storage and RAM
Nonupgradeable laptops with permanently installed solid-state drives and RAM are increasingly common, to the dismay of power users. Refreshingly, Dynabook laptops eschew that recent trend as part of their utilitarian approach. While a larger SSD and more RAM might not seem like much, they can be the difference between extending your laptop’s life by a half-decade or having to replace it entirely just a few years after purchase.
What to look for in a quality Toshiba Dynabook laptop
Central processing unit capability
Laptop CPUs come in a couple of different flavors, and the majority of Dynabook laptops are built around Intel processors. The Core CPU family is the most common Intel line, and laptop Core CPUs are somewhat similar to the desktop versions. In particular, pay attention to laptops with Intel Core i5 and i7 processors, which feature quad-core designs or better and are ideal for running Windows 10 and 11 smoothly with no hiccups or slowdowns.
There are Dynabook laptops equipped with the more economical yet significantly less powerful Celeron family of CPUs. Celeron CPUs are almost all built with a dual-core architecture and lack the high Turbo clock speeds of more powerful Core CPUs. Celeron processors use less electricity and therefore deliver longer battery lives, but they’re also not suitable for heavy workloads and can even bog down during simple browsing.
To save money, look for a model with a 10th-generation Core i3 CPU or newer. The i3-1005G1, for example, has similar power usage to Celeron CPUs but offers considerably better performance at a similar price.
System memory capacity
Technically, you can run Windows with as little as 2GB of system memory, but you should never attempt that unless you want to pull your hair out in frustration. It’s just not feasible, especially in today’s world of complex apps and ad-heavy webpages. Similarly, while some people may be patient enough to use a laptop with 4GB of RAM, it’s still not recommended. These days, the generally accepted minimum amount of system memory is 8GB, and you’ll notice a significant performance difference between that and anything less.
Enough storage space
Again, it’s highly recommended to go above and beyond Microsoft’s recommended size for your system drive. You could theoretically load Windows 10 on a 64GB drive, but it would likely be agonizingly slow and would certainly fill up after adding a few common applications. For the most part, 128GB is considered the minimum for running Windows 10 or 11.
How much you can expect to spend on a Toshiba Dynabook laptop
The most affordable Toshiba Dynabook laptops worth buying cost about $500. At the top end, their best ultralight and high-powered models will set you back just shy of $1,500.
Toshiba Dynabook laptop FAQ
Can you upgrade a Dynabook’s Wi-Fi card?
A. You can by using a specialized internal Wi-Fi radio that uses a plug format called the M.2 key. However, all new Dynabook laptops come with Wi-Fi 6 technology, so you won’t need to upgrade that for quite some time.
Do Dynabook laptops have a lot of ports?
A. Yes, most Dynabook laptops have more ports than a majority of the competition. That includes two to three USB Type-A ports (some of which are capable of 10-gigabit-per-second transmission) and a USB-C port that supports the Power Delivery protocol. Most also sport an HDMI output and some even have a VGA port for legacy monitors.
What’s the best Toshiba Dynabook laptop to buy?
Top Toshiba Dynabook laptop
What you need to know: This no-nonsense laptop has more ports than nearly every other laptop on the market, and better hardware, too.
What you’ll love: Did you know that someone still produces laptops with DVD drives in 2022? It’s true, and this Tecra A50-J is one of the last such notebook PCs (possibly ever). In addition, it’s got plenty of USB ports, full-size and microSD card readers, HDMI and VGA video outputs and a wired Ethernet jack. Aside from its impressive connectivity options, it boasts an advanced Intel CPU with a powerful integrated GPU, a 1TB NVMe solid-state drive and 32GB of RAM.
What you should consider: It’s not stylish, nor particularly cheap — but for the hardware it has, it’s actually a fantastic deal.
Where to buy: Sold by Amazon
Top Toshiba Dynabook laptop for the money
What you need to know: The base model version of one of Dynabook’s premium laptops, it delivers impressive performance at a low price.
What you’ll love: The Intel Core i3-1005G1 won’t win any bench mark competitions, but it will provide a relatively smooth Windows experience without sucking a ton of battery power or costing you a fortune. In terms of ports, it’s got one Type-C, two 10-gigabit Type-As, an Ethernet jack, HDMI output and combination headphone/microphone jack.
What you should consider: The CPU should run Windows 10 and 11 fine, but its middling performance will make high-level multitasking difficult.
Where to buy: Sold by Amazon
Worth checking out
What you need to know: This interesting variant is about as light as a laptop gets while still delivering impressive performance.
What you’ll love: It’s outfitted with an 11th-generation Intel Core i7 that has a great GPU embedded and plenty of high-speed RAM connected. However, the most impressive thing about this high-end laptop is that it weighs less than 2 pounds, which is quite an impressive feat. Its 13.3-inch screen sports a Full HD resolution, which at that size is about as crisp as you could possibly need.
What you should consider: It’s one of the most expensive options in Toshiba’s Dynabook laptop lineup.
Where to buy: Sold by Amazon
Sign up here to receive the BestReviews weekly newsletter for useful advice on new products and noteworthy deals.
Chris Thomas writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.
Copyright 2022 BestReviews, a Nexstar company. All rights reserved.