Notebooks Guide

Samsung Series 5 Ultra (NP530U3BI) review

Samsung Series 5 (13-inch) - An Ultra-priced Ultrabook

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Overall rating 8/10
Design:
8
Features:
8.5
Performance:
8
Value:
9
Mobility:
7.5
THE GOOD
Good value
Matte Screen
Build quality
Pleasant keyboard to use
THE BAD
Sharp edges near palm rest
Slightly heavier than other Ultrabooks


Almost There

Almost There

So this is the part where we tell you if you should or shouldn't buy the Samsung Series 5 Ultra. Unfortunately, it isn't as simple and clear-cut as many of its cometitors we've come across. This is largely due to the fact that as an Ultrabook, the Samsung Series 5 Ultra is very attractively priced at just $S1288. For what you pay, you get a laptop with good build, a matte screen (which is unheard of in its class), a fantastic keyboard and a fairly large (but non-clickable) trackpad. It's basically the notebook that you should get if you need something that's thin, light and has plenty of storage space.

However like the Acer Aspire S3 before it, the Samsung Series 5 Ultra has very middling battery life (compared to the other Ultrabooks of course). As we scrutnized further, it was clear that despite the Samsung's decent battey capacity (better than the Acer), the power usage optimization of the machine leaves much to be desired given its specs. Performance in producticivity and gaming benchmarks on the other hand were to expectations and while generally holding up the rear, it wasn't much worse or better than the other Ultrabooks.

Battery life and minor design flaws (such as sharp edges that can hurt your wrists) aside, the Samsung Series 5 Ultra does live up to overall expectations and isn't handicapped in other ways. What that means is that you can get this notebook without much concern other than the couple of aspects we've have stated. As a budget-class Ultrabook, Samsung has made a good attempt, but should these issues become deal-breakers for you, you can rest assure that there are plenty of other Ultrabooks in the market that you can consider, though you might have to pay more for them.