Toshiba Satellite S55-C5274 15.6″ Laptop Review

Features:

  • Processor: Intel Core i7 – 5500U 2.4GHz
  • RAM: 12GB DDR3L – SDRAM
  • Hard Drive: 1TB HDD
  • Graphics Card: Nvidia GeForce GT 740M
  • Operating System: Windows 10 64-Bit

Gaming can be an expensive hobby. I don’t often have the cash to spend on the hardware I would like to and I usually game with older laptops because I can’t justify buying a top end gaming system.

As long as I can get a decent performance from the games I play, I’m happy playing them on lower settings. I tend to play competitive online games where this matters more than pretty graphics.

Toshiba’s Satellite S55-C5274 costs a fraction of the price of a top end gaming rig. Is it still a viable gaming machine though? The short answer is “Yes!” but with some limitations.


Pros:

  • Relatively inexpensive
  • Excellent SDRAM
  • Good hard drive space
  • Windows 10 helps with performance
  • Can run older games very well
  • Plenty of ports

Cons:

  • The hard drive is HDD rather than SSD
  • Newer games will give maybe 30fps at lowest settings, using lower resolutions
  • The fan is fairly loud
  • The case has some sharp corners

The Satellite’s Main Features

Games these days can require a lot of hard drive space to install. Some of the top games being played today range from 5GB to 80GB (Overwatch – 5GB, DOTA 2 – 15GB and Elder Scrolls Online – 80GB). Having 1TB of space means you’ll have more than enough for your games, even after Windows 10 takes its slice of 16 GB.

Nvidia’s GeForce GT 740M is a decent graphics card that will let you play older or less graphically intensive games on high settings and games like Player Unknown’s Battlegrounds on low settings with around 30fps (with some help – see “Getting The Most Out Of This System”).

Having an SDRAM of 12GB is more than adequate for any game around today and you’re unlikely to need more with the games that the Satellites graphics card and processor can handle.

Windows 10 is also a fairly robust operating system and it can help in the performance of your games, especially when compared to Windows 7 or 8.

The Satellite’s screen has a glossy finish which means the colours in your games will be more vivid and have more contrast when compared to a matte finish. It can be prone to glare, though, which could be annoying, but you can easily adjust the laptop to minimise the problem.

What Type Of Gamer Would Benefit From This Rig?

If you don’t mind playing newer games on low settings then Toshiba’s Satellite is a great option. You’ll be able to run games that are a few years old with at least medium settings and some will allow you to run them at high settings with a good frame rate.

Awesome games like Skyrim work perfectly fine with this system, on high settings, for example.

There are enough USB ports to allow you to use a gamepad and headset and still have one port spare if you want to use something like an external keyboard. This would get around the potential issue of the Satellite’s sharp corners.

You could always rest the laptop on a table as well, and that would help keep it cooler than if it were on your legs.

Getting The Most Out Of This System

You’ll be able to get more frames per second by reducing your resolution, as seen by this player running Battlefield 2 with the same Nvidia card and processor as the Satellite.

This is because you won’t be drawing as many pixels per second with lower resolutions. This can be very useful for many games but can be a drawback for competitive first person shooters.

If you want to play games like Player Unknown’s Battlegrounds, there’s plenty of tips and tricks created by helpful players.

This step by step article shows you how to make Battlegrounds playable for a system like the Satellite. I’ve used it myself and it makes a significant difference. Don’t be put off by anything that looks too technical because as long as you follow the instructions it’s actually easy to implement!

Some of the steps are game-specific but many of them will increase your performance for similar games.

Should I Buy The Toshiba Satellite S55-C5274

This is a good system for the price. Compared with other models on the market, it’s hard to find more bang for your buck.

The components inside the system range in quality, with the processor, hard drive, and graphics card being average for gaming and the RAM being excellent.

It’s a lot harder to upgrade the hardware in a laptop than in a tower which means you’ll be using this laptop for a couple of years or however long it is before you can afford to buy another.

This means you’ll probably be looking at a similar price in the future for an average gaming rig and you’ll be playing the newer games on the same settings as you did with the Satellite.

The Bottom Line

If you’re happy playing new games that are graphically intensive on low settings and older games on medium-high then the Satellite is worth the investment. Your fps will usually be significantly lower than gamers with high-end rigs which can impact your experience in competitive play. There’s plenty of popular games that will run very well on the Satellite, like Skyrim, so think about the types of games you’ll be playing before you buy.

How Does it Compare?

 


ASUS GL551 15″ Gaming Laptop 

This ASUS gaming laptop has more power in the processor and graphics card. You’ll be able to get more out of your games with this model but you’ll be paying more for it, too! If you can afford the upgrade then the ASUS GL551 is worth it.

 

 


 

CYBERPOWERPC Gamer Ultra GUA3120A

This is a good alternative if you’re looking for a tower. As you can see in this comparison the graphics card in the CYBERPOWERPC rates slightly higher overall, but is worse for gaming. The processor isn’t as powerful as the Sattelite but you won’t notice that much with older, less intensive games.

 

 


Lenovo – G51 15.6″ Laptop

A cheaper alternative to the Satellite. New games with significant requirements are out. This is a good buy if you play dated games (4-5 years old), or games with lower minimum specifications. You’ll probably be playing most games on medium-low settings to get decent performance out of them with this model.

 

 


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