Toshiba v. Compal

Archived from groups: comp.sys.laptops (More info?)

I've been looking into getting a notebook, and noticed some talk about
Toshiba, which apparently has SOME of their models made by Compal. It
sounds like the Compal is considered inferior, and there is a voltage
difference you can look for to tell you which made which notebook.

How big a difference is this is quality?

Additionally, slightly off topic, but does anyone know if Toshiba
makes its own PDA's? (as I've been very happy with the quality of my
Toshiba PDA, and that's one reason I'm looking at their notebooks, I
want to be sure I'm looking at the right computer maker.)
9 answers Last reply
More about toshiba compal
  1. Archived from groups: comp.sys.laptops (More info?)

    Your summary is correct. The quality difference between the
    Toshiba-built Toshiba models and those built by Compal was (4 years ago)
    huge, very hard to overstate -- they were not, for all practical
    purposes, the same brands. That difference has narrowed a bit (and I
    don't mean that to be sarcastic, the Compal models have gotten better),
    but I'm uncertain as to the status of the difference at this time.


    John R Rybock wrote:

    > I've been looking into getting a notebook, and noticed some talk about
    > Toshiba, which apparently has SOME of their models made by Compal. It
    > sounds like the Compal is considered inferior, and there is a voltage
    > difference you can look for to tell you which made which notebook.
    >
    > How big a difference is this is quality?
    >
    > Additionally, slightly off topic, but does anyone know if Toshiba
    > makes its own PDA's? (as I've been very happy with the quality of my
    > Toshiba PDA, and that's one reason I'm looking at their notebooks, I
    > want to be sure I'm looking at the right computer maker.)
  2. Archived from groups: comp.sys.laptops (More info?)

    Barry Watzman wrote:
    > Your summary is correct. The quality difference between the
    > Toshiba-built Toshiba models and those built by Compal was (4 years
    > ago) huge, very hard to overstate -- they were not, for all practical
    > purposes, the same brands. That difference has narrowed a bit (and I
    > don't mean that to be sarcastic, the Compal models have gotten
    > better), but I'm uncertain as to the status of the difference at this
    > time.
    >
    >
    > John R Rybock wrote:
    >
    >> I've been looking into getting a notebook, and noticed some talk
    >> about Toshiba, which apparently has SOME of their models made by
    >> Compal. It sounds like the Compal is considered inferior, and there
    >> is a voltage difference you can look for to tell you which made
    >> which notebook.
    >>
    >> How big a difference is this is quality?
    >>
    >> Additionally, slightly off topic, but does anyone know if Toshiba
    >> makes its own PDA's? (as I've been very happy with the quality of my
    >> Toshiba PDA, and that's one reason I'm looking at their notebooks, I
    >> want to be sure I'm looking at the right computer maker.)

    Toshiba announced some months ago that they would no longer manufacture
    their own laptops, choosing - at the "suggestion" of their financiers -
    that outsourcing might save their failing laptop business. They will
    (AIRC) manufacture a limited set of laptops for the Japanese market, all
    other outsourced. Toshiba is joining all of the major laptop players
    (IBM, included) who are contracting with Asia, Inc. for laptops. At one
    time it was moderately conclusive that the 19.5 volt power adapters
    meant a Compal Toshiba. Today, who knows?

    Q
  3. Archived from groups: comp.sys.laptops (More info?)

    Barry Watzman <WatzmanNOSPAM@neo.rr.com> writes:
    > Your summary is correct. The quality difference between the
    > Toshiba-built Toshiba models and those built by Compal was (4 years
    > ago) huge, very hard to overstate -- they were not, for all practical
    > purposes, the same brands. That difference has narrowed a bit (and I
    > don't mean that to be sarcastic, the Compal models have gotten
    > better), but I'm uncertain as to the status of the difference at this time.

    Compal made some of the better-received models of the Dell Inspiron
    line. They were reasonable second-tier machines. I came close to
    buying one, but ended up with another Thinkpad because of the Compal's
    noisier fan.
  4. Archived from groups: comp.sys.laptops (More info?)

    On Tue, 6 Jul 2004 00:14:25 -0600, "Quaoar" <quaoar@tenthplanet.net> wrote:

    :>Barry Watzman wrote:
    :>> Your summary is correct. The quality difference between the
    :>> Toshiba-built Toshiba models and those built by Compal was (4 years
    :>> ago) huge, very hard to overstate -- they were not, for all practical
    :>> purposes, the same brands. That difference has narrowed a bit (and I
    :>> don't mean that to be sarcastic, the Compal models have gotten
    :>> better), but I'm uncertain as to the status of the difference at this
    :>> time.
    :>>
    :>>
    :>> John R Rybock wrote:
    :>>
    :>>> I've been looking into getting a notebook, and noticed some talk
    :>>> about Toshiba, which apparently has SOME of their models made by
    :>>> Compal. It sounds like the Compal is considered inferior, and there
    :>>> is a voltage difference you can look for to tell you which made
    :>>> which notebook.
    :>>>
    :>>> How big a difference is this is quality?
    :>>>
    :>>> Additionally, slightly off topic, but does anyone know if Toshiba
    :>>> makes its own PDA's? (as I've been very happy with the quality of my
    :>>> Toshiba PDA, and that's one reason I'm looking at their notebooks, I
    :>>> want to be sure I'm looking at the right computer maker.)
    :>
    :>Toshiba announced some months ago that they would no longer manufacture
    :>their own laptops, choosing - at the "suggestion" of their financiers -
    :>that outsourcing might save their failing laptop business. They will
    :>(AIRC) manufacture a limited set of laptops for the Japanese market, all
    :>other outsourced. Toshiba is joining all of the major laptop players
    :>(IBM, included) who are contracting with Asia, Inc. for laptops. At one
    :>time it was moderately conclusive that the 19.5 volt power adapters
    :>meant a Compal Toshiba. Today, who knows?
    :>
    :>Q
    :>

    I've seen the above posted by you a number of times now. Have you got some
    sources/links to back that up? I checked with a friend of mine that is the
    service manager at a Toshiba Premier ASP and he said they have not been
    given any information like that. He did say that more and more of the
    "consumer models" (Satellite) are being made by Compal but based on their
    contacts at Toshiba the business models (Tecra, Satellite Pro and Portege)
    are all still Toshiba built except for a few models built by Inventec. If
    you have links that prove otherwise I'm sure he would be interested in
    checking them out.

    Thanks,
    me/2
  5. Archived from groups: comp.sys.laptops (More info?)

    me/2 wrote:
    > On Tue, 6 Jul 2004 00:14:25 -0600, "Quaoar" <quaoar@tenthplanet.net>
    > wrote:
    >
    >>> Barry Watzman wrote:
    >>>> Your summary is correct. The quality difference between the
    >>>> Toshiba-built Toshiba models and those built by Compal was (4 years
    >>>> ago) huge, very hard to overstate -- they were not, for all
    >>>> practical purposes, the same brands. That difference has narrowed
    >>>> a bit (and I don't mean that to be sarcastic, the Compal models
    >>>> have gotten better), but I'm uncertain as to the status of the
    >>>> difference at this time.
    >>>>
    >>>>
    >>>> John R Rybock wrote:
    >>>>
    >>>>> I've been looking into getting a notebook, and noticed some talk
    >>>>> about Toshiba, which apparently has SOME of their models made by
    >>>>> Compal. It sounds like the Compal is considered inferior, and
    >>>>> there is a voltage difference you can look for to tell you which
    >>>>> made which notebook.
    >>>>>
    >>>>> How big a difference is this is quality?
    >>>>>
    >>>>> Additionally, slightly off topic, but does anyone know if Toshiba
    >>>>> makes its own PDA's? (as I've been very happy with the quality of
    >>>>> my Toshiba PDA, and that's one reason I'm looking at their
    >>>>> notebooks, I want to be sure I'm looking at the right computer
    >>>>> maker.)
    >>>
    >>> Toshiba announced some months ago that they would no longer
    >>> manufacture their own laptops, choosing - at the "suggestion" of
    >>> their financiers - that outsourcing might save their failing laptop
    >>> business. They will (AIRC) manufacture a limited set of laptops
    >>> for the Japanese market, all other outsourced. Toshiba is joining
    >>> all of the major laptop players (IBM, included) who are contracting
    >>> with Asia, Inc. for laptops. At one time it was moderately
    >>> conclusive that the 19.5 volt power adapters meant a Compal
    >>> Toshiba. Today, who knows?
    >>>
    >>> Q
    >>>
    >
    > I've seen the above posted by you a number of times now. Have you
    > got some sources/links to back that up? I checked with a friend of
    > mine that is the service manager at a Toshiba Premier ASP and he said
    > they have not been given any information like that. He did say that
    > more and more of the "consumer models" (Satellite) are being made by
    > Compal but based on their contacts at Toshiba the business models
    > (Tecra, Satellite Pro and Portege) are all still Toshiba built except
    > for a few models built by Inventec. If you have links that prove
    > otherwise I'm sure he would be interested in checking them out.
    >
    > Thanks,
    > me/2

    http://www.toshiba.co.jp/about/ir/pdf/eng/20030916.pdf
    This is the corporate statement on the reorganization of the notebook
    business plan. This statement refers to increased dependence on ODM for
    lower end laptops. Apparently, the financial community judged this to
    be too little and too late. 9/16/2003

    http://www.businessweek.com/magazine/content/04_22/b3885081.htm

    Selected quotes:

    For the year ended Mar. 31, Toshiba's $253 million profit, on sales of
    $49 billion, was dragged down by the PC arm's $193 million loss. "We
    could not adapt," concedes President Tadashi Okamura. "We were proud of
    our quality, so it was difficult for us [to change]. That was our
    mistake."

    ....

    RUSH TO OUTSOURCE. The success of Okamura's plan, though, will depend on
    whether he can fix the PC business. So he's planning to outsource *at
    least half of Toshiba's PC production* [emphasis added] to Taiwanese
    manufacturers, up from about 30% today. Most of the rest of Toshiba's
    computers will be made at its factory in Hangzhou, China, while
    production at Japanese plants will be cut by 75%, to 20,000 computers a
    month -- just 4% of Toshiba's total.

    ....

    And PCs are tougher than ever, as Dell and HP wage a brutal price war.
    Unless Toshiba outsources more of its production, it won't be able to
    compete because it will pay more for components than the
    hypercompetitive Taiwanese manufacturers do.

    ....

    There is a subsequent analysis, which I have yet to find that states 1)
    Toshiba is significantly shrinking its Japanese computer R&D and 2)
    except for high end computers for the Japanese market, most Tosh
    production will be outsourced or spun off, presumably at the insistence
    of its bankers. I'll post that when I find it.

    Q
  6. Archived from groups: comp.sys.laptops (More info?)

    John R Rybock wrote:

    > I've been looking into getting a notebook, and noticed some talk about
    > Toshiba, which apparently has SOME of their models made by Compal.

    I really like my Toshiba/Compal P-25. I've had it about a year and it's
    a great portable.

    > and there is a voltage
    > difference you can look for to tell you which made which notebook.

    This is a drag because Targus power-supplies and all the other
    power-supplies I've looked into, for connecting to
    airline/cigarette-lighter/etc., don't have tips for the 19v Compal
    connector.
  7. Archived from groups: comp.sys.laptops (More info?)

    Re: "This is a drag because Targus power-supplies and all the other
    power-supplies I've looked into, for connecting to
    airline/cigarette-lighter/etc., don't have tips for the 19v Compal
    connector."

    Sure they do. Targus Tip #24 is 19 volts for Toshiba models built by
    Compal using 19 volts with the "standard" Compal coaxial connector.

    I do note that after years of using standard 2-wire coaxial connectors
    for both 15 and 19 volt models (different sizes, but still standard
    round coaxial connectors), Some recent Toshiba models have gone to a
    totally proprietary multi-pin connector, for example the A40/A45 series.
    Bummer.


    Richard Grossman wrote:

    > John R Rybock wrote:
    >
    >> I've been looking into getting a notebook, and noticed some talk about
    >> Toshiba, which apparently has SOME of their models made by Compal.
    >
    >
    > I really like my Toshiba/Compal P-25. I've had it about a year and it's
    > a great portable.
    >
    >> and there is a voltage
    >> difference you can look for to tell you which made which notebook.
    >
    >
    > This is a drag because Targus power-supplies and all the other
    > power-supplies I've looked into, for connecting to
    > airline/cigarette-lighter/etc., don't have tips for the 19v Compal
    > connector.
  8. Archived from groups: comp.sys.laptops (More info?)

    On Wed, 7 Jul 2004 08:36:19 -0600, "Quaoar" <quaoar@tenthplanet.net> wrote:

    [major snippage]

    :>http://www.toshiba.co.jp/about/ir/pdf/eng/20030916.pdf
    :>This is the corporate statement on the reorganization of the notebook
    :>business plan. This statement refers to increased dependence on ODM for
    :>lower end laptops. Apparently, the financial community judged this to
    :>be too little and too late. 9/16/2003
    :>
    :>http://www.businessweek.com/magazine/content/04_22/b3885081.htm
    :>
    :>Selected quotes:
    :>
    :>For the year ended Mar. 31, Toshiba's $253 million profit, on sales of
    :>$49 billion, was dragged down by the PC arm's $193 million loss. "We
    :>could not adapt," concedes President Tadashi Okamura. "We were proud of
    :>our quality, so it was difficult for us [to change]. That was our
    :>mistake."
    :>
    :>...
    :>
    :>RUSH TO OUTSOURCE. The success of Okamura's plan, though, will depend on
    :>whether he can fix the PC business. So he's planning to outsource *at
    :>least half of Toshiba's PC production* [emphasis added] to Taiwanese
    :>manufacturers, up from about 30% today. Most of the rest of Toshiba's
    :>computers will be made at its factory in Hangzhou, China, while
    :>production at Japanese plants will be cut by 75%, to 20,000 computers a
    :>month -- just 4% of Toshiba's total.
    :>
    :>...
    :>
    :>And PCs are tougher than ever, as Dell and HP wage a brutal price war.
    :>Unless Toshiba outsources more of its production, it won't be able to
    :>compete because it will pay more for components than the
    :>hypercompetitive Taiwanese manufacturers do.
    :>
    :>...
    :>
    :>There is a subsequent analysis, which I have yet to find that states 1)
    :>Toshiba is significantly shrinking its Japanese computer R&D and 2)
    :>except for high end computers for the Japanese market, most Tosh
    :>production will be outsourced or spun off, presumably at the insistence
    :>of its bankers. I'll post that when I find it.
    :>
    :>Q

    Thanks for your efforts. Maybe that explains his comment about Toshiba
    cutting the labor reimbursement for warranty work to ASPs recently to less
    than half of what it was a few years ago.

    And they wonder why their reputation is slipping. I'll be that has a lot to
    do with their decline in ratings for service. Hard for anyone to put out
    the same effort for less than half the money. Also makes it harder for the
    service centers to hire or keep qualified techs.

    me/2
  9. Archived from groups: comp.sys.laptops (More info?)

    I have a Compal-made Toshiba Satellite 1115, which used to sell for as little as $499, new. IME, it was no bargain, even at the price: The real weakness was in the plastics, which were thin and brittle, and tended to crack. Ironically, the electronics have been just dandy. If I knew then what I know now, I would not have bought it, even at the price: I'd have held out for something built more sturdily, even at closer to $1K.

    On Mon, 05 Jul 2004 22:48:21 -0400
    John R Rybock <rybock@comcast.net> wrote:

    >
    > I've been looking into getting a notebook, and noticed some talk about
    > Toshiba, which apparently has SOME of their models made by Compal. It
    > sounds like the Compal is considered inferior, and there is a voltage
    > difference you can look for to tell you which made which notebook.
    >
    > How big a difference is this is quality?
    >
    > Additionally, slightly off topic, but does anyone know if Toshiba
    > makes its own PDA's? (as I've been very happy with the quality of my
    > Toshiba PDA, and that's one reason I'm looking at their notebooks, I
    > want to be sure I'm looking at the right computer maker.)
Ask a new question

Read More

Notebooks Toshiba Laptops Product