Toshibas M50-A-11C sits halfway between a slim ultraportable and a powerful general purpose laptop, both in terms of its specification and its price. Its lean chassis measures just 21mm thick, but youll locate a good variety of ports circular the side, including three USB ports, two of which are USB3, an HDMI output, a multi-format card reader, a Gigabit Ethernet harbor and a combined headphone and microphone jack. Its a very handsome laptop, but we were quick to notice the worrying amount of flex in the plastic keyboard tray. The upper panel between the hinges was particularly bendy, but we were pleased to look the lower wrist rest was a lot firmer thanks to its brushed aluminium finish. Wed still be a little cautious about putting the M50-A-11C in a bag, but this wont be a problem if youre planning to save it tethered to your desk. This is a shame, as the M50-A-11Cs battery life reaps the benefits of its Haswell processors low energy consumption. It lasted 9 hours and 50 minutes in our light use test with the screen set to half brightness, which is almost double the average battery life of other laptops in this price range. SPECIFICATION The M50-A-11C is also one of the most powerful 550 laptops around. Inside, it has a 1.6GHz Intel Core i5-4200U processor, the thesame processor that powers the considerably more costly Samsung Ativ Book 9 Plus, and 6GB of RAM. With these components, it scored an excellent 47 overall in our multimedia benchmarks, putting its raw processing power alongside other Core i5 Ultrabooks. This gives it plenty of speed to cope with demanding media programs as well as everyday office tasks. Its 2GB Nvidia GeForce GT 740M graphics chip is even more appealing, as this turns the M50-A-11C into a competent gaming laptop as well. Admittedly, the chip didnt perform quite as well as other laptops weve seen it in, but its steady frame rate of 34.9fps in Dirt Showdown at a 1,280×720 resolution and high quality settings is still very good for a laptop of this price. Its not powerful enough to cope with more demanding games, such as Crysis 3, but you should still be able to play most 3D titles without having to lower the quality settings too much. DISPLAY Unfortunately, the M50-A-11Cs 15.6in screen left a lot to be desired. The 1,366×768 resolution looked good, but our colour calibrator showed the screen was displaying just 54.1 per cent of the sRGB colour gamut. This is under average, even for a 550 laptop, as wed normally expect to look at least 60 per cent, if not higher. This meant colours looked pale and washed out, and our solid image tests lacked depth and vibrancy. Our solid blacks also revealed that the top half of the screen was lighter than the bottom half. This meant our blacks appeared as various shades of grey depending on how we angled the screen, and this reflected our relatively high black level reading of 0.65cd/m2. Combined with some rather narrow viewing angles, this made it very difficult to profit a uniform colour across the screen at any one time. The screens contrast levels werent much better, as we recorded a contrast ratio of just 336:1. This made it tricky to select out dark shadow detail in our high contrast test images, and it was only made worse by the screens reflective glossy finish.