Toshiba Qosmio DX730

Unless you want the HDMI in, the Toshiba Qosmio DX730 simply doesn't do well enough for the asking price. HP's Touchsmart 520 is a better quality product — and AU$400 cheaper.


6.5
CNET Rating

View more from Toshiba »

About The Author

CNET Editor

Craig was sucked into the endless vortex of tech at an early age, only to be spat back out babbling things like "phase-locked-loop crystal oscillators!". Mostly this receives a pat on the head from the listener, followed closely by a question about what laptop they should buy.


The all-in-one touch market is an odd one, one that many have declined to touch due to "gorilla arm". We sympathise, but there is apparently some market for them, as they just keep coming.

The latest to cross our view is Toshiba's Qosmio DX730. Traditionally the Qosmio brand has been Toshiba's gaming laptop range — while the DX730 does contain a GeForce GT 540M, it's not a high end gaming GPU. Nay, this Qosmio's purpose is to be a multimedia king.

This means a 23-inch, 1920x0180 screen; TV tuner, Blu-ray drive and Windows Media Center remote, something Toshiba has ascribed to; although the last is incredibly thick and unwieldy, and the back button small enough to be difficult to press. Toshiba's bundled in something extra though, and that's two HDMI ports. Yes, you can use this PC as a monitor.

The functionality is basic: no 24p support, didn't score a single point on our HQV tests, and exhibited severe judder in both our Mission Impossible: III scenes. Not so great for movies — it may however suit casual gamers, who generally don't need to worry about these issues.

Audio performance is slightly better, with speakers big enough to avoid the auto-attenuation issues that plague most laptops. While bass response is decent, the overall tone is muffled, and vocals are pushed forward while the mid range sounds oddly restrained.

The whole multimedia aim of the DX730 is in direct conflict with it being a touch screen — watching movies on a high-gloss, fingerprint laden screen isn't exactly pleasant, with dark scenes highlighting the shortcomings of such an amalgamation. Throw in the fact that it's a TN panel, and you've got less than optimal viewing angles as well.

The touch isn't spectacular either: running off infrared technology may be cheaper, but as a result the Qosmio only really understands two points of touch and can get confused if you're doing more than just jabbing the screen. This isn't specifically a Toshiba issue, but a limitation of the technology.

The Windows touch experience remains lacklustre at best too — while Toshiba's bundled Microsoft's Touch Pack for Windows 7, like most Windows touch software it only highlights the novelty and shortcomings of the platform.

In the name of keeping things beautiful but definitely not functional, outside of the power button, Toshiba's put its control buttons for the Qosmio on the left hand side rather than on the front. We've lambasted monitor manufacturers for this, and the same ideal applies here: usability significantly decreases, requiring the user to shift position to access the device's functions. If you must hide the buttons away, at least put labels on the front to keep them accessible.

Ergonomics aside, there's buttons to switch between video inputs, volume and brightness controls. Toshiba's been clever and included a button here as well that just turns the screen off, rather than the whole machine, which is appreciated.

Aside from the aforementioned dual HDMI ports, the Qosmio is decently appointed for connectivity, featuring two USB 3.0 ports, four USB 2.0, headphone/microphone jacks, an SD card reader, aerial jack, gigabit Ethernet, 2.4GHz 802.11n and Bluetooth.

The included keyboard has incredibly short throw for its keys, making it not the most pleasant experience. The mouse is skittish enough to be throw-away quality. Inexplicably, Toshiba expects you to attach a USB wireless dongle in a hidden compartment in the Qosmio to be able to use these wireless accessories — couldn't this have been built in?

Performance

As much as we're being harsh on the Qosmio, it's not actually a bad machine as a simple all-in-one. With a 2TB hard drive, Core i5-2430M processor @ 2.40GHz, 6GB RAM and a GeForce GT 540M, it's capable of most every day tasks.

Handbrake encoding (in seconds)

  • 264
    HP TouchSmart 520 (Core i5 @ 2.5GHz, 1TB HDD, 4GB RAM)
  • 401
    Toshiba Qosmio DX730 (Core i5 @ 2.4GHz, 2TB HDD, 6GB RAM)

(Shorter bars indicate better performance)

iTunes encoding (in seconds)

  • 39
    HP TouchSmart 520 (Core i5 @ 2.5GHz, 1TB HDD, 4GB RAM)
  • 45
    Toshiba Qosmio DX730 (Core i5 @ 2.4GHz, 2TB HDD, 6GB RAM)

(Shorter bars indicate better performance)

Photoshop CS5 benchmark (in seconds)

  • 269
    HP TouchSmart 520 (Core i5 @ 2.5GHz, 1TB HDD, 4GB RAM)
  • 297
    Toshiba Qosmio DX730 (Core i5 @ 2.4GHz, 2TB HDD, 6GB RAM)

(Shorter bars indicate better performance)

Multimedia multitasking test (in seconds)

  • 317
    HP TouchSmart 520 (Core i5 @ 2.5GHz, 1TB HDD, 4GB RAM)
  • 498
    Toshiba Qosmio DX730 (Core i5 @ 2.4GHz, 2TB HDD, 6GB RAM)

(Shorter bars indicate better performance)

Metro 2033 (in FPS)

  • Max FPS
  • Average FPS
  • Min FPS
  • 17151
    HP TouchSmart 520 (Core i5 @ 2.5GHz, 1TB HDD, 4GB RAM)
  • 36112
    Toshiba Qosmio DX730 (Core i5 @ 2.4GHz, 2TB HDD, 6GB RAM)

(Longer bars indicate better performance)

Batman: Arkham Asylum (in FPS)

  • Max FPS
  • Average FPS
  • Min FPS
  • 755433
    Toshiba Qosmio DX730 (Core i5 @ 2.4GHz, 2TB HDD, 6GB RAM)
  • 372716
    HP TouchSmart 520 (Core i5 @ 2.5GHz, 1TB HDD, 4GB RAM)

(Longer bars indicate better performance)

While the HP is blessed with a more powerful processor, Toshiba's baby is actually better equipped for games.

Conclusion

Unless you want the HDMI in, the Toshiba Qosmio DX730 simply doesn't do well enough for the asking price. HP's Touchsmart 520 has better quality accessories, nicer screen, better sound and more powerful processor — and is AU$400 cheaper. If you need a touchscreen all-in-one, you know where to go.



Add Your Review

Avatar
 

Be the first to review or comment on this product!


* Below fields optional


Post comment as


Sponsored Links

Recently Viewed Products