Samsung Series 3 NP355V5C review
15.6 in 1,366x768 display, 2.5kg, 2.3GHz AMD A10-4600M, 8.00GB RAM, 1,000GB disk, Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit
We’ve seen Series 3 laptops before, but only with Intel hardware inside. The NP355V5C is the first one with AMD components, and Samsung seems to have chosen wisely. The A10-4600M is currently AMD’s most powerful Trinity mobile APU, and it’s been paired with dedicated graphics for both desktop and 3D performance.
From the outside, there’s little difference between this Samsung Series 3 and others we’ve seen before. The silver metallic finish looks sleek, even if the plastic construction isn’t particularly luxurious. It weighs 2.5kg and is 30mm thick, so it’s about average for a 15in laptop and you’ll be able to carry it without too much strain.
At the sides, you get two USB ports, two faster USB3 ports, HDMI and VGA video outputs, twin 3.5mm audio jacks, a Gigabit Ethernet port and a DVD re-writer. There’s also a multiformat card reader at the front, too. This laptop gives you plenty of connectivity.
Samsung has managed to squeeze in a numeric keypad by shrinking the keys slightly, but the QWERTY keys are full size, which meant we didn’t find typing too troublesome. The keys themselves are springy with plenty of travel, which should suit most people, and we can’t bemoan the lack of a keyboard backlight considering the price of the laptop.
The spacious touchpad is a great match for the 15.6in display. It uses the same aspect ratio and is made from smooth plastic that lets your fingers glide across its surface. There’s more than enough room to cover the entire desktop in one swipe, and multitouch gestures were always recognised accurately. The touchpad buttons beneath it are chunky and responsive, making audible clicks each time you push one in so you’re always sure they have registered.
Samsung has fitted a pair of stereo speakers above the keyboard tray, but they’re best described as functional. The mid-range is clear, but the high-end sounds sharp and there isn’t much bass, and we still recommend headphones for anything more involving than the average YouTube video.