Samsung Notebook 9 (2018) review
Laptops such as the Samsung Notebook 9 make for compelling products, because they could have bothersome problems that stop them away from greatness, they're usually outweighed by the tremendous boons they bring to the table.
When you look at the Samsung Notebook 9, for example, the battery is long-lasting and the hardware is quickly -- but the squishy keyboard and too-small SSD holds it back.
The Samsung Notebook 9, as a result of its distinctive balance of advantages and defects, is excellent enough in certain respects, so that it may be the ideal laptop for you, provided that you appreciate raw energy and battery life over everything else -- and may get used to the keyboard.
Price and availability
The model we reviewed is priced at $1,499 (about £1,069, AU$1,959), that gets one of the hardware listed to the best. But, there's a starting configuration with half of the RAM and without committed graphics for $1,299 (about £929, AU$1,699).
Both models of the Notebook 9 feature a 1080p display, also Thunderbolt 3 ports and fingerprint detectors for login via Windows Hello. As well as the only colour option available to the Samsung Notebook 9 is the silver-ish'Light Titan'. So, the Samsung Notebook 9 has not changed all that much this time round, at least beyond the evident updates to processing and graphics power.
Starting at $999 (about £719, AU$1,299) the brand new Dell XPS 15 handily outshines the Samsung Notebook 9 as it comes to value, placing forth half as much RAM but much more powerful Nvidia GTX 1050 graphics along with a 128GB SSD- plus-1TB HDD combo storage alternative behind an FHD display.
No matter how the Samsung Notebook 9 far out costs the $2,399 (£1,719, AU$3,129) MacBook Pro 2017 for with more modern processors, even though it does not possess the Touch Bar. However, the AMD Radeon Pro 555 GPU at Apple's flagship may outclass the Nvidia MX150 processor a Little. So, where does that leave the Samsung Notebook 9?
The Samsung Notebook 9 depends a bit on its own features and styling to warrant the purchase price, therefore it is good that it's indeed quite trendy and fully-featured. Compared to the past year, however, the Samsung Notebook 9 hasn't changed all that far design-wise.
This is excellent news -- Samsung includes a fantastic laptop design approach. And, the Samsung Notebook 9 is apartment where it has to be, with just the essential number of curves -- that laptop radiates subtle luxury throughout its aluminum aluminum framework.
The Samsung Notebook 9 is sold in only under three pounds and can be only 0.61 inches thick, which makes it one of the very portable 15-inch laptops we have ever tested. That said, there's 1 portion of the chassis we would have wanted were somewhat better.
The keyboard, while ample and profound in traveling, is awfully squishy feeling in regards to feedback. While it's definitely not the crisp, punchy experience we are used to on laptops in this budget, it does not affect your time with it just expect a learning curve. It is up to you whether a number of the laptop's other significant advantages outweigh this defect.
Additionally we found the keyboard backlighting to become awfully faint, perhaps not appearing much brighter than a glow-in-the-dark decal and similar in color. In the minimum, the keys are well-spaced and leave space to get a fantastic fingerprint detector and touchpad.
The touchpad with this laptop is coated in glass just like previously and offers up ultimate hand rejection in that it not once triggered mouse motions while typing. Meanwhile, the fingerprint sensor is snappy to prepare and speedy in actions -- all laptops must feature this regular.
Display, sceen and sound
Not surprisingly, Samsung's FHD display in use this is fantastic, offering excellent colour reproduction via its LED panel. Reds totally pop while blacks but disappear in the screen's bonding.
On the other hand, the Samsung Notebook 9's true brightness possible is hidden behind an outdoor mode inside the Samsung Settings app. This raises the screen's maximum brightness of 350 nits by another 150 to provide a maximum brightness of 500 nits -- that places it in league with the MacBook Pro.
The simple fact that the Samsung Notebook 9 display is fantastic is not surprising, knowing the maker -- only twist that Outdoor Mode on when watching Netflix, and you're going to have a excellent time. You will be happy to know that this settings app also features a blue light reduction mode -- which makes those 500 nits easier on the eyes.
In terms of the audio, we are sad to say that it sounds about as thin and tinny as you would expect from miniature, down-firing speakers. That is 1 place worth looking at for Samsung in terms of improving the 2019 model.
Rocking an 8th-generation Intel Kaby Lake Refresh Core i7 processor and Nvidia MX150 GPU, it should not come as a surprise that the Samsung Notebook 9 absolutely aced our benchmarks. What's astonishing, however, is the huge quantity of battery lifetime that this laptop boasts.
Throughout our routine tests, the Notebook 9 proved that it is equipped to handle just about any computing task you throw at it inside the range of the ordinary user. Without a 4K display, do not expect to edit 4K media with this particular machine, but it should render 1080p video and picture files without difficulty.
The laptop's graphical performance is awfully impressive, and suggests you need to be able to get a casual, fundamental gaming out of the device and fantastic video playback.
That said, we had been somewhat disappointed with the storage on offer. If a professional or even prosumer should happen to pick this up laptop, they'd fill up that 256GB SSD very quickly. Especially for the price tag, Samsung must offer at least 512GB or a hybrid alternative -- Apple may not, however Dell certain does.
In the face of our problems with the Samsung Notebook 9, we are in awe of a single key benefit of Samsung's newest 15-inch laptop: super-long battery lifetime. This could only be the longest-lasting laptop we have examined, crushing both of our benchmarks and outlasting the many power-rich laptops we have seen.
The Samsung Notebook 9 easily outclasses the Dell XPS 15 2017, lasting almost 8 hours at our PCMark 8 battery evaluation, and more than 12 and a half hours at our community video rundown test. But, we can not talk to the 15-inch MacBook Pro 2017.
However, how did the Samsung Notebook 9 struck these numbers? Well, Samsung hugely increased battery capacity now around -- from 10Wh into 17Wh. At the exact same time, the laptop only features a 1080p display, while also incorporating more battery, just resulted in net profits for battery lifetime.
In case your requirements revolve around everyday performance and dependability, then the Notebook 9 may be an excellent option, knowing how much time it could last on battery power. These figures, not accounting for Windows 10 Battery Saver Mode and turning equilibrium under 50%, could see you through cross state, as well as some intercontinental flights.
Features and software
While Samsung did push McAfee antivirus in to this laptop in the launching, Samsung at least developed a few fantastic settings control software for its exclusive features. By way of example, the Samsung Settings app can send the laptop into a quiet mode, that reduces fan noise by turning on power saving features.
Even better, this is where you activate Outdoor Mode, which fosters the screen brightness to 400 nits rather than 350. From this app, you will also have the ability to switch between greatest performance modes and extra battery life saving modes that may make the already extended battery life much longer.
The Samsung Notebook 9's software also features an HDR mode that may make colors pop more in photos and videos, although to our eyes that are tight that it only seems to create scenes darker and colours a little more pronounced. You could even control keyboard backlighting here but, you can not make it any more powerful or alter the colour.
At any speed, the Samsung Settings app is one of the most useful pieces of software we have seen pre-loaded onto a laptop in quite a while.
Regardless of a keyboard that is not really punchy enough for our preferences and backlit, and a few lackluster audio performance in addition to a little bit of storage, we've found that the 15-inch Samsung Notebook 9's benefits far outweigh its defects.
You may absolutely be hard-pressed to discover a laptop that plays this well, and that also continues this long. Sure, that's thanks in large part to some 1080p display in a time when high time options are all but required, however based upon your specific wants this might be an incredible laptop for you.
From the title of beefy battery lifetime and flexibility in performance, and of course all the ports we will ever need in a laptop, it's easy to recommend the Samsung Notebook 9 to many students and general users. You may expect to go far on this laptop -- also for longer without needing to charge.