Laptops like the 2018 15-inch Samsung Notebook 9 make for fascinating evaluations, as a result of that is a type of gadgets with nagging flaws which might be arguably outweighed by immense advantages.
As an illustration, the 15-inch Notebook 9 is an unbelievable performer with a long-lasting battery – maybe probably the most we’ve ever seen – that’s held again by a squishy keyboard and a comparatively small quantity of storage – neither of which you usually discover on most laptops of this value.
The result’s a laptop computer that’s so wonderful in some areas that it may be simply the proper laptop computer for a selected particular person: one which prioritizes lasting energy and efficiency above all else … and may get used to a squishy keyboard.
Worth and availability
Configured as you see to the proper, the Samsung Notebook 9 15 is priced at $1,499 (about £1,069, AU$1,959). Nevertheless, a starting model with half as a lot reminiscence and missing the Nvidia MX150 graphics prices a cool $1,299 (about £929, AU$1,699).
Each models come housing Full HD (1080p) shows, in addition to Thunderbolt 3 ports and fingerprint sensors for safe Windows Hello login by way of Windows 10. And, the one coloration possibility obtainable for each fashions is the silvery Gentle Titan. So, not a lot has modified since final 12 months save for graphics and processing energy.
Whereas it lacks the Contact Bar and super-sharp Retina show, this laptop computer far out-prices the $2,399 (£1,719, AU$3,129) 15-inch MacBook Pro for extra computational energy. Having stated that, the MacBook Pro’s AMD Radeon Pro 555 graphics may outclass the Nvidia MX150 chip by a hair.
Beginning at $999 (about £719, AU$1,299) the brand-new Dell XPS 15 handily outshines the Samsung Notebook 9 in relation to worth, placing forth half as a lot RAM however far stronger Nvidia GTX 1050 graphics and a 128GB SSD- plus-1TB HDD combo storage answer behind an FHD show. So, the place does that go away the Notebook 9?
Seeing as how the Notebook 9 depends fairly a bit on its stylings and options to prop up its pricing, it’s good that the Notebook 9 is kind of fashionable and full of options. In comparison with final 12 months, although, there isn’t a lot in any respect completely different in regards to the Notebook 9 design.
That seems to be a moderately good factor, as we’ve all the time appreciated Samsung’s strategy to laptop computer design. Flat the place it must be and solely with a small quantity of curves, the Notebook 9 exudes refined luxurious by its silvery aluminum body.
The laptop computer weighs just below three kilos and is merely 0.61 inches thick, making it some of the moveable 15-inch laptops we’ve ever examined. That stated, there may be one aspect of the chassis we’d have wished had been just a little tighter.
The keyboard, whereas spacious and deep in journey, is terribly squishy feeling in relation to suggestions. Whereas it’s definitely not the crisp, punchy expertise we’re used to on laptops on this value vary, it doesn’t impression your time utilizing it – simply anticipate a studying curve. It’s as much as you whether or not among the laptop computer’s different main advantages outweigh this flaw.
Additionally, we discovered the keyboard backlighting to be awfully faint, not showing a lot brighter than a glow-in-the-dark sticker and comparable in hue. On the very least, the keys are well-spaced and go away room for a implausible fingerprint sensor and touchpad.
The touchpad on this laptop computer is coated in glass like earlier than and affords up supreme palm rejection in that it not as soon as triggered mouse actions whereas typing. In the meantime, the fingerprint sensor is snappy to arrange and speedy in motion – all laptops ought to characteristic this normal.
Display and audio
Unsurprisingly, Samsung’s FHD show in use right here is implausible, providing glorious coloration copy by its LED panel. Reds completely pop whereas blacks all however disappear into the display’s bonding.
Nevertheless, the laptop computer show’s true brightness potential is hidden behind an Outside Mode inside the Samsung Settings app. This will increase the display’s most brightness of 350 nits by one other 150 nits.
At any price, this show is first-rate, which ought to come as no shock given its maker – simply activate that Outside Mode when watching Netflix, and also you’ll be nice. Take solace in understanding, then, that this settings app additionally encompasses a blue mild discount mode when these 500 nits get to be an excessive amount of.
As for the audio, we’re unhappy to say that it sounds about as skinny and tinny as you’d anticipate from tiny, down-firing audio system. That is one place price taking a look at for Samsung when it comes to enhancing the 2019 model.
Working off of an 8th-generation Intel Kaby Lake Core i7 processor and Nvidia MX150 graphics, it’s not a shock that the Samsung Pocket book 9 completely aced our benchmarks. What’s extra stunning is the huge quantity of battery life that this laptop computer is sweet for.
Throughout our benchmark checks, the Notebook 9 proved that it’s capable of deal with nearly any computing job you throw at it inside the scope of the common consumer. With no 4K show, don’t anticipate to edit 4K media on this machine, however it ought to render 1080p video and picture information with out difficulty.
The laptop computer’s graphical efficiency is terribly spectacular, and signifies you need to be capable to get some informal, fundamental gaming out of this machine and implausible video playback.
That stated, we had been a bit disillusioned by the storage on supply. If an expert or prosumer had been to choose up this laptop computer, they’d replenish that 256GB SSD very quickly. Particularly for the value, Samsung ought to supply at the very least 512GB or a hybrid answer – Apple won’t, however Dell positive does.
Regardless of our qualms with the Notebook 9, we’re in awe of 1 key benefit of Samsung’s newest 15-inch laptop computer: insane battery life. This may properly be the longest-lasting laptop computer we’ve examined but, crushing each of our benchmarks and outlasting probably the most power-packed laptops we’ve seen.
At practically eight hours in our PCMark eight battery take a look at and greater than 12 and a half hours in our native video rundown take a look at, the Notebook 9 handily outclasses the Dell XPS 15 of last year, although we are able to’t communicate for the 15-inch MacBook Pro.
How did the laptop computer obtain these numbers? Nicely, Samsung boosted the battery capability of its 15-inch laptop computer by practically 10Wh to 75Wh this time round. On the identical time, sporting only a 1080p show whereas including extra battery solely noticed web good points in battery life.
In case your wants focus extra on basic efficiency and reliability, then the Notebook 9 may be a wonderful alternative, understanding how lengthy it may possibly final you on a cost. These figures, not even accounting for Windows 10 Battery Saver Mode and tuning brightness beneath 50%, would see you thru cross-country, and even intercontinental, flights.
Features and software
Whereas responsible of slapping McAfee antivirus software program onto this laptop computer at launch, Samsung at the very least developed some implausible settings management software program for its distinctive options. As an illustration, this Samsung Settings app can ship the laptop computer right into a silent mode that activates energy saving options to cut back fan noise.
Higher but, that is the place you activate Outside Mode, which boosts the display brightness to 500 nits moderately than 350. You may also toggle most efficiency modes in addition to extra battery saver modes that would see you acquire much more hours of longevity.
The software program even options an HDR mode that makes colours pop extra in images and movies, although to our untrained eyes it appears to simply make scenes darker and colours a bit extra pronounced. You’ll be able to lastly management keyboard backlighting from right here – however, you possibly can’t make it any stronger or a nicer coloration.
At any price, the Samsung Settings app is without doubt one of the most helpful items of software program we’ve seen pre-loaded onto a laptop computer in a very long time.
Regardless of a keyboard that isn’t fairly punchy sufficient for our tastes and dimly backlit, and a few lackluster audio efficiency in addition to a small quantity of storage, we discovered that the 15-inch Samsung Notebook 9’s advantages far outweigh its flaws.
You’ll completely be hard-pressed to discover a laptop computer that performs this properly, and which additionally lasts this lengthy. Certain, that’s thanks largely to a 1080p show in a time when high-resolution choices are all however required, however relying in your particular wants this might be an unbelievable laptop computer for you.
Within the identify of immense battery life and flexibility in efficiency, to not point out all of the ports we might ever want in a laptop computer, we are able to simply advocate the Samsung Notebook 9 to most college students and basic customers. You’ll be able to anticipate to go far with this laptop computer – and for longer between fees.