Looking for an ultra-cheap machine to take to school, are you? If you couldn't care less about extreme portability, Toshiba's shockingly inexpensive Satellite L355
(S7915) could be just the thing. $348 at Walmart nets you a 17-inch display (1,440 x 900), a 2.2GHz Celeron 900 CPU, Vista Basic, 3GB of RAM, a 250GB (5400RPM) hard drive, 8x DVD writer and GMA 4500M integrated graphics. The 7-pound machine was recently tested over at Laptop Mag
, and critics were noticeably stunned at just how well the machine performed. The display was bright, the keyboard was more than adequate and the six-cell battery managed to hang on for over 2.5 hours in real-world testing. All in all, reviewers felt that the rig was perfectly suitable for handling schoolwork and other basic tasks, and save for the omission of a webcam, they couldn't find any huge beefs given the uncharacteristically low MSRP. 'Course, if you already snapped up that $298 Compaq
, maybe you should just plug your ears here and pretend this whole thing never happened.