View Full Version : I've had my m200 for 3 years now and it's been r
03-24-2007, 05:30 AM
I've had my m200 for 3 years now and it's been really good to me. I'm considering going up to a 400 because of random little issues I've had with my current tabby.
Anyway, I've see some of the issues that people have had. Loud fan and all but is the tabby really that bad? Is there something newer on the horizon? Should I wait? Not sure I like the R200. I want the bigger screen and this is for work mostly so it doesn't have to look pretty. It has to work. I'm looking for a horsepower increase from my 1.7 Centrino with 7200 60 GIG drive and 1.5GIGs of ram. I am looking at a loaded 400 with the 7600 processor, 2gigs ram, and 80gig 7200 rpm drive.
I'm not interested in a X60 before anyone goes there. :)
THanks for any guidance and input!
03-24-2007, 09:37 PM
Unless you know that you KNOW there is some super-hot model about to break cover (there isn't) or some better faster cooler new component on the way (there always is) there is never a 'right time' to buy. The fundamental rule is: buy the highest spec config you can afford (you have nailed that, although you can get 100Gb 7200...) to last you the next 3 years.
I experienced the long running fan issue, but since i haven't gone to Vista yet, I can use the 1.8W BIOS, which fixes it. Other than that, I personally think the M400 is a very mature, stable unit. Sure I wish it had dedicated graphics, but in the 6 months I've had it, the integrated graphics have never been an issue. Like yours, mine is a workhorse, and if gaming or 3D rendering were important to me, I'd have bought something else.
To quote Ben Stiller in Starsky and Hutch, 'Do it. Do it'...
03-28-2007, 04:13 AM
Wayne, that's what I was looking for. SOmeone to push me over the top. See, it is a workhorse first. I DO primarily use it in laptop mode but love to read magazines and also do notes in slate mode sometimes.
I like the fact the new m400 does 256M shared ram for video which allows for more flex with Vista.
I guess overall, my upgrade should be noticeable right? Going from what I have to what I am looking at? I too consider this a 3 year purchase which is why I load it up. Not sure i need the extra space but I probably should go with the 100gig drive.
Should I be concerned with fan noise over my m200? I hear mine going a lot and it really doesn't bother me much. Is the m400 really that much worse? Louder?
Is anyone here running Vista on the m400 and having any problems I should be concerned with?
Thanks for the reply. I really need a little more input before I take the plunge. :)
03-28-2007, 12:04 PM
Anyone else wanna chime in? :)
03-28-2007, 12:58 PM
On the fan noise, if you have the current Vista BIOS (3.4) it DOESN'T have the fan fix (bummer). I just loaded 2.1N from http://support.toshiba-tro.de/kb0/TSB6A01KJ0000R01.htm that has the fan fix AND the widescreen support (yay, get to use my 22" widescreen LCD). You can do a BIOS rollback to older versions if you need to. The fan noise is very noticeable: it seems when it is connected to power that it throttles up to max and doesn't spin down again, regardless of CPU heat.
I managed to get it to slow down by using the Toshiba Power utility to throttle the CPU down to it's minimum speed. After about 5 minutes the fan slowed down, and when I sped the CPU up again, the fan stayed low. I figured that was just a major pain, and rolled the older BIOS back in. I am absolutely certain that Toshiba will at some point release a BIOS that supports Vista, widescreen AND proper fan operation...
03-28-2007, 02:37 PM
Wayne, with all of that in mind, would you say that the fan bothers you so much that you wouldn't get the m400 again if you had the choice or are you willing to ignore that as an issue because of the unit's many other strengths?
Thanks for all of your input. :)
03-28-2007, 06:18 PM
In a quiet environment, the fan is annoying, but like I said, there is a fix for that (albeit not under Vista apparently). That's the only beef I have with the unit, and it's a problem that WILL be fixed.
There is NO perfect laptop out there yet (and there never will be), but for what I do, the M400 is bang on the money...
04-02-2007, 07:03 PM
I will chime in and say the fan noise fix is good. Without it I was sersiously disappointed with the noise level and I cannot recommend the machine without it. Whats the deal with the widescreen support. Can someone explain the benefit given that obviously the physical screen aspect ratio remains unchanged.
04-04-2007, 02:32 AM
I have an M400 and don't notice fan noise at all - so ymmv - sheureka
04-04-2007, 10:24 AM
logger, the widescreen fix allows the the M400 to support external displays with a widescreen form factor, like the Viewsonic VX2235WM 22" 1680x1050 LCD I have. Before loading the fixed BIOS, the M400 would only support 4:3 external resolutions, which looked spaz on my LCD.
sheureka, what BIOS do you have loaded? If your unit came with one of the right BIOS versions, you're right, you shouldn't notice fan noise.
04-07-2007, 08:04 PM
Can I ask if anyone that owned both the m200 and now an m400 can compare the screens for me? Is it brighter? Clearer? Same?
04-07-2007, 08:40 PM
I'va to say that M400 sis a nice tool to work with but you'll have to deal with some anoying things :
- Fan Noise : really anoying for me even with bios that take care of fan speed. Not louder than a regula desktop pc but too much for me moreover for a 2500€ tablet pc !
- Hard drive management/performance : what a pity, this 120gb/5400 drive is always doing something ! turn off everything (defender, snapshot etc.) but still the same pb. The RAID system is faulty. Maybe this will be better if I plug a second HD but then I miss the optical drive...what I bought the M400
- bluetooth SCMS : ah ah, how to listen in hifi with my plantronics 590...
- fan again : some vibration of the fan is transmitted to the aeration bar
- sound speaker : to small and too much treble. That's the reason why I want to use my bt headset (and VOip)
Beside this, this is a really nice device. Screen is clear and bright (1400x1050), good keyboard (ah, if you can go with this stupid small enter key and also stupid windows key location), nice form factor, laptop AND tablet, good mic (really nice to do screencast)...work nice with Vista Ultimate (even if I'm still waiting for a simple mail form Moduslink), vmware etc. Just remember that os plus all add-on for tabletpc need at least 600-700 mo and something like 70 process (!!). Go with 2 gb of ram.
I love it but, please Mr TOSHIBA, correct fan, HDD management (remove RAID) and remove SCMS for headset...can we cheat with copyright with a headset ?
Here is my pov,
Guy form France
04-10-2007, 04:14 AM
M200 > M400 : The screen is much brighter and clearer. A real joy, you don't notice the digitiser at all.
Overall it is a bigger, bulkier device (well, it feels so). It is a step in the wrong direction for me. It is a better laptop, but not as a good a tablet size.
The fan is awful, but it does depend on your environment, in a normal office you don;'t hear it. But in a quiet room it is so so annoying. The thing is bugged anyway, as the fan throttles to start with, but after a certain time it sticks in FULL. Even if you remove the power cable, and set it to low battery consumption it still runs on FULL, even if the scren turns off. How can that be ?
04-10-2007, 05:13 AM
So you mean that the m400 is better regarding screen quality right?
Also, can you run glass on the m400 with Vista? The newer models when ordered state that the shared graphics go up to 256M.
Not overly concerned with the fan to be honest. (That statement will probably come back to haunt me later!)
At the risk of over pimping this I did a review of the M400 - http://www.keating.me.uk/?p=22
I was in two minds about the fan, it's annoying that it runs so hard that the machine is stone cold all the time but good that because the fan runs at the speed most of the time it kind of fades in to the background.
I moved from an old HP TC1100 to the M400 2Ghz Core2Duo, I'm very happy with it, but if a new bios came out with the quieter fan mode I wouldn't complain.
The machine does run Aero, although I hear some of the work is palmed off to the CPU but I've not noticed any ill effects. I'll probably upgrade to 2Gb ram as I get the feeling Vista wants to stretch out further than the 1Gb permits! :)
Hope that helps!
04-11-2007, 08:34 AM
quote:Originally posted by Majestic
So you mean that the m400 is better regarding screen quality right?
Yup, much sharper than the M200.
04-13-2007, 06:57 AM
Thank you all for your help!!!
Will post observations when it comes in 2 weeks.
04-20-2007, 09:59 AM
Shipped Yesterday 4/19!
05-20-2007, 01:40 PM
I reopen this thread so but ALSO to ask -- after the good information about the best BIOS in one message,
1. Fred can update us on his reaction to the the M440,
2. Others can say what display driver versions are working well, and
3. if the 2.1n BIOS is still the best for fan, widescreen and display management.
You see, it's not clear to me how much of the freezing I have is BIOS versus the display driver. What effect does the BIOS have on the display? I should think: not a lot.
My problem is that inactivity seems to leave the screen unable to turn back on, even though the basic functions are responding to mouse or <Enter> events. This occurs with and without attachment to wall 100V power. I have tried a lot of different Power Management settings! I have to Hibernate every time to have any hope of re-starting my work. That adds delay.
I bought my M400 in June/July 2006. Some aspects of its use have been driving me crazy ever since, but the machine has promise. I teach elementary school so have to leave it on for something I'll teach later. I then have to know I can walk up to it and GO right away. No restarts! (as I have to do now...)
I did reset the M400 to factory fresh state and re-installed everything a month or so ago.
So, what display driver versions are all of you using?
Thanks, in advance, for your info.
05-20-2007, 08:03 PM
The screen not coming back is a known issue, and if you rotate the screen (laptop->tablet or vice versa) it normally fires up ok. You shouldn't need a reset.
BTW, it doesn't exhibit the same problem with Vista and the 3.40 Vista BIOS. I just have the loud fan now... :-(
05-23-2007, 04:12 AM
Thanks, I will try that recovery method. I will also, though, stick with the WinXP Pro-based TabletOS for a while. In my school work environment I have to hook up to all kinds of devices on short notice (many of them older gear), and I feel Vista will have to evolve a bit more to make sense for me.
So what display drivers are TabletOS users running successfully? Or do I go ahead and load the newest?
I do want the flexibility to work with a wide format LCD panel, preferably one that rotates. I haven't heard any reference to that capability in display driver discussions.
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