The Samsung Notebook 9 Pro is aiming for a middle, in a good way. Compared to other models we’ve tested recently that offer a high-resolution touchscreen display, a 360-degree hinge, a cold steel chassis, and even coop support, it’s delicately designed to offer a small bit of everything, with a few standout features: a dissimilar Radeon RX 540 GPU, an integrated S-Pen with special Samsung applications as good as Windows 10 inking compatibility, and impressively prolonged battery life.
Given a good altogether showing, a Samsung Notebook 9 Pro is a laptop many people can like, including entry-level gamers. You’ll see us comparing it to twin other 15-inch laptops with 360-degree hinges: The Lenovo Yoga 720 is really identical in pattern and price, though a Nvidia GeForce GTX 1050 dissimilar GPU creates it heavier and hotter as good as faster. The 15-inch HP Spectre x360 is deliberate a category leader, though we competence be astounded during how it achieved in a tests compared to a Notebook 9 Pro.
Price, specs, and features
The Notebook 9 Pro indication we tested (poetically named NP940X5M-X01US) costs $1,300 as configured and is a higher-end of a twin SKUs in this product line (we’ll quickly report a other SKU below).
CPU: Intel Core i7-7500U. This is a 7th-generation Kaby Lake dual-core CPU with a bottom time of 2.7GHz and a limit time speed of 3.5GHz. It’s a flattering good chip, though as you’ll see in a tests, a opening disproportion between dual-core and quad-core CPUs is significant.
RAM: 16GB of DDR4 RAM. You’ll still see some laptops with usually 8GB, though 16GB is a honeyed mark right now.
GPU: AMD Radeon RX 540 with 2GB of GDDR5 memory. This lower-end dissimilar GPU isn’t going to bake any barns, though it’ll sufficient for light gaming.
Display: 15-inch, FHD (1920×1080) IPS LED touchscreen whose tip bezel houses a 720p webcam and a facial sensor for use with Windows Hello. The arrangement offers a totalled limit liughtness of 344 nits (in line with Samsung’s 350-nit spec). You wouldn’t wish to holder it adult all a way, however, generally when regulating on battery, as brighter displays devour some-more power.
Storage: 256GB SATA3 M.2 SSD. A Samsung model, natch, and a good size.
Ports: One USB 3.1 Gen 1 (5Gbps) Type C, twin USB 3.0 Type A, microSD. To a credit, there’s also a full HDMI pier for joining an outmost display. This accessible pier is stealing harder to find as laptops get slimmer.
Weight: A tote-able 3.8 pounds. Add another 0.7 bruise for a AC adapter. This compares good to 4 pounds, 7 ounces for a 15-inch HP Spectre x360 and 4 pounds, 9 ounces for a Lenovo Yoga 720.
Dimensions: 13.67 x 9.41 x 0.67 inches
The Notebook 9 Pro has a lower-priced sibling, the NP940X5M-X03US, that differs in carrying a lower-end dual-core CPU, privately a Core i5-7200U, and usually 8GB of RAM. At $1,100, it seems like a lot to scapegoat for usually $200 in savings.
In use: A well-balanced machine
The Notebook 9 Pro has a quirks, though altogether it’s a good thought-out product. Sure, we won’t get a glamour and play of a flagship, though flattering many all works.
The matte-aluminum framework with chromed Samsung trademark is beautiful and sturdy. There’s hardly any flex in possibly half of a body, and a 360-degree hinges feel rock-solid. We conclude a lighter weight as well—bringing it along doesn’t feel like a tough choice.
The keyboard hardness is slippery, though a rather concave keys assistance keep fingers where they’re ostensible to be. The keys feel absolutely spaced, nothing are in an peculiar location, and their transport feels comfortable. The trackpad is really vast and responsive, and a centered plcae is great—it’s always disconcerting when it shifts to one side.
More and some-more laptops offer coop support, though Samsung had a conduct start with a S-Pen record it was already regulating on a Android tablets and phones. A outrageous advantage off a bat: The coop is housed in a possess container in a underside of a Notebook 9 Pro, rather than in some floppy loop or loosey-goosey captivating connection. You will need to find a protected place for a special tweezers for stealing and installing a gangling nibs that come with a laptop.
In further to its support for Windows 10 inking features, a S-Pen comes with a possess note-taking, drawing, and other capability apps. Collectively called Active Command, they’re simply summoned when we mislay a coop from a container or press a symbol when it’s nearby a display. we enjoyed all of them, generally how we can digitally brew colors in a sketch app, and how we can name video clips with a coop to make your possess charcterised GIFs.
There was usually one vivid error in a exam unit, and that was a audio. The twin speakers in a Notebook 9 Pro, nestled into a bottom panel, have a surprisingly singular volume range, generally deliberation that this laptop is meant to play games as good as tide media.
On a brighter side, a Notebook 9 Pro’s dissimilar GPU runs flattering cool. The slim intake grille on a bottom row and a empty opening between a hinges whimper kindly during operation.
Performance: Happy medium
The Notebook 9 Pro’s exam formula follow a trail of moderation—with one critical exception. You’ll see it marks closely with a likewise configured 15-inch HP Spectre x360 on many tests. Although a likewise designed Lenovo Yoga 720 has a advantage of a quad-core CPU and a some-more absolute dissimilar GPU, a Notebook 9 Pro shows it a thing or two. But wait ‘til we see a battery life, that is truly considerable and could be a determining cause for some users.
Our initial exam is PCMark Work 8 Conventional, which simulates bland activities like web browsing, video chat, and request editing. It’s a good exam for isolating a CPU’s purpose in bland use. Any appurtenance scoring 2,000 or above will cruise along uniformly during these low-intensity tasks.
It’s a light test, so it’s not startling that the Notebook 9 Pro gets right into a brew with a quad-core competition. The HP Spectre x360 lagged behind rather since of a 4K display, that simply final some-more estimate power.
Cinebench R15 offers a useful counterpoint to PCMark Work 8 Conventional. It’s a giveaway 3D digest exam formed on Maxon’s veteran Cinema4D engine. It’s roughly wholly CPU-bound and beam good with a series of cores and threads. In a box of a Notebook 9 Pro, we can see a starker disproportion between a dual-core CPU and a quad-core we can get with a Lenovo Yoga 720.
Editing and converting videos offers another good exam of dual-core vs. quad-core, since some-more cores make a large difference. We used a renouned and giveaway Handbrake encoder to modify a 30GB 1080p video regulating a built-in Android inscription preset. Because of how prolonged it runs, a formula can also exhibit how a complement handles itself underneath complicated thermal load.
As we can see in a draft above, a quad-core Lenovo Yoga 720 and Dell XPS 15 handily kick a dual-core Notebook 9 Pro during this complete task. However, a Notebook 9 Pro in spin creates a HP Spectre x360 demeanour like a laggard, expected since of thermal throttling.
Futuremark’s 3DMark Sky Diver is a fake exam that measures a graphics opening of a PC. Although it doesn’t use an tangible video diversion engine, it’s still good reputable and clearly shows what we get if we opt for a dissimilar GPU.
No surprise, a some-more absolute graphics engines in a Lenovo Yoga 720 and Dell XPS 15 overcome in this test. To a credit, a Samsung Notebook 9 Pro achieves a lot with what it has, generally compared to a HP Spectre x360.
Outstanding battery life
On tip of this clever altogether benchmark performance, a Notebook 9 Pro can justly exaggerate about a battery life. Note that your mileage will change depending on how we use your laptop, and what power-sucking or power-sipping components it competence have. For a test, we set a arrangement liughtness during an office-typical 250 nits and run down a battery by looping a 4K video, with a span of earbuds plugged in and a laptop set to aeroplane mode.
The Notebook 9 Pro has a 4-cell, 3,530 mAh/54Whr lithium ion battery, that lasts adult to 11.5 hours, per Samsung. In a exam it lasted 590 minutes, or scarcely 10 hours, prolonged adequate for many people to get by their day. The other laptops in this draft have many incomparable batteries (79.2Whr for a HP Spectre x360, 97Whr for a Dell XPS 15, and 72Whr for a Lenovo Yoga 720), though they can’t keep adult with a Notebook 9 Pro—their systems direct some-more power.
A reward underline we didn’t test: You can fist a small some-more life out of your laptop by charging it with any USB-C-connected smartphone battery pack. You won’t be means to recharge a laptop fully, though it’s a good backup if you’re regulating on fumes. Anecdotally we also attempted a third-party USB horse on a Notebook 9 Pro, and it was peaceful to take a charge.
Samsung’s Notebook 9 Pro does a really good pursuit of balancing opening and facilities with battery life. It’s a kind of laptop a mainstream user can get but feeling they’ve compromised much. The dissimilar GPU, while modest, gives it a important boost over laptops with integrated graphics. Best of all, a coop support and a long-lasting battery offer lots of capability for a money. The tough choice is between this indication and a Lenovo Yoga 720. It comes down to how many graphics energy we want, and for what arrange of tradeoff. The infrequent gamers will expected come down on a side of a Notebook 9 Pro.