Toshiba Qosmio X500 Q900S

Regular readers may recall that my old Toshiba Satellite laptop died on me a few weeks back, the results of what I believe was a  battery short that fried part of the motherboard.  Thankfully the hard drive was not damaged.  After careful deliberation I settled on the Toshiba Qosmio seen above as a suitable replacement.  My photography demands are such that I need a powerful computer with the biggest screen possible.  Of course living in a motorhome means space can be at a premium at times.  I toyed with the idea of buying a tower with desktop monitor but nixed that pretty quickly because the monitor would have taken up too much counter space.  A laptop was definitely the way to go and Toshiba’s new Qosmio fit my needs perfectly.

Performance

Processor*
Intel® Core™ i7-740QM processor
Operating System*
Genuine Windows 7 Professional (64-bit)
Graphics Engine*
NVIDIA® GeForce® GTX 460M
Graphics Memory*
1.5GB GDDR5 discrete graphics memory

Memory and Storage

Memory*
6GB DDR3 1066MHz memory
Hard Drive*
1TB: 500GB (7200rpm, Serial ATA) + 500GB (7200rpm, Serial ATA)
Optical Drive*
Blu-ray Disc™ ROM and DVD SuperMulti drive with Labelflash®

Audio and Video

Display Size*
18.4″ widescreen
Display Type*
FHD TruBrite® TFT LCD Display
Display Resolution*
Supports 1080p content, 1920×1080, 16:9 aspect ratio
Audio
S/P DIF output port (shared with headphone port), Built-in microphone, Headphone jack (stereo), Microphone jack (mono), harman/kardon® stereo speakers
I am very happy with the performance so far.  The 64 bit Windows 7 operating system handles my Photoshop CS5 and Lightroom 3 demands without breaking a sweat.  The huge TruBrite screen really makes my photos pop as well.  A nice included feature on the Qosmio is the ability to use a larger default screen font for the internet.  Larger type set on a large screen makes for much easier reading.
We’ve had an unlimited mobile broadband account with Verizon for a few years now.  We used it more frequently before getting the Datastorm roof mounted satellite last fall.  Our problem with Verizon though is that it won’t work in Canada.  Well it will, but roaming rates apply.  Generally, we use the Verizon account while south for the winter and suspend service a few days before we cross back into Canada in the spring.  Our experience is that Verizon’s mobile broadband service works very well provided the user is within 5-10 miles of an interstate highway, otherwise one is lucky to get a signal.  I recently reactivated our Verizon service and it turns out my old USB720 modem is eligible for a free upgrade to the MIFI 2200 seen above.  I popped into a Verizon Wireless store yesterday and was informed by the clerk that the upgrade would cost me $50 and require me to enter into another two year contract.  What he glossed over was that a  new contract would cap data usage at 5 GB a month instead of the unlimited data we now enjoy.
 
So what to do?  We went home and I researched the MIFI 2200 upgrade a little more online.  Today I called Verizon and was told that under no circumstances should I give up my unlimited data plan as these are no longer offered.  The customer service agent called it “GOLD!”  Present Verizon data plans are capped at either 5 or 10 GB per month.  The bigger data plan costs more of course and you pay more if you go over your monthly cap too.  I was still eligible for a free upgrade to the MIFI 2200.  All it cost me was the CA state sales tax, about $23.00. 
So the new mobile hotspot should be here on Thursday.  Apparently it is completely portable and five wifi devices can be connected to it at once.  Hopefully it meets all our needs.

2 Comments

  1. Mark and Chris December 1, 2010 at 1:17 pm #

    That is exactly what it means. Sounds wonderful and we can still suspend service while back in Canada too.

  2. Sue and Doug December 1, 2010 at 5:07 am #

    so does this mean you can keep your unlimited data plan and still get the MIFI2200?