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Samsung Series 5 Ultrathin review

Our Rating :
Price when reviewed : £483
inc VAT

The best value ultra-portable we’ve seen, thanks to its AMD Trinity processor


13.3 in 1,366×768 display, 1.9kg, 2.1GHz AMD A6-4455M, 6.00GB RAM, 500GB disk, Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit

By using an AMD processor instead of an Intel one, Samsung has managed to keep the price of its Series 5 Ultrathin to less than £500. Technically speaking, this isn’t an Ultrabook, as that’s an Intel brand-name, but you’d have a hard job working this out based on looks.

Samsung Series 5 Ultrathin

In fact, the Series 5 Ultrathin uses the same chassis as the Samsung Series 5 13in Ultrabook, so the only visible difference between the two is the AMD Vision sticker slapped onto the wrist rest. Even the ports around each edge are the same – you get one USB3, HDMI video out, a 3.5mm headset audio jack and a full-size Ethernet port on one side, and two regular USB ports and a multi-format card reader on the other.

Samsung Series 5 Ultrathin

Inside is a different story: with a Trinity A6-4455M processor at its core – alongside 6GB of RAM. The dual-core chip usually runs at 2.1GHz, but can use Turbo Core to boost up to 2.6GHz in certain applications. It’s easily fast enough for your everyday tasks, although it still struggled with our multi-threaded application benchmarks. An overall score of 21 puts it significantly far behind Intel’s Ultrabooks in terms of raw performance.

It uses a 500GB hard disk with a flash memory cache to speed up performance. This isn’t the SSD used on more-expensive Ultrabooks, but its the same technology used on the more affordable Intel-based models -such as this laptop’s Series 5 sister device.

Battery life is also a little behind the likes of Intel. In our light-use test, the Series 5 Ultrathin lasted five and a half hours away from the mains, which is enough to get most of the way through a working day, but a good two hours behind most Ultrabooks.

Samsung Series 5 Ultrathin

Trinity provides graphics power as well as desktop performance. The Radeon HD 7500G shares 512MB of video memory with the main system RAM, and should be able to play older games at reasonable detail settings. At our standard 720p settings with 4x anti-aliasing, it produced 20fps – a few frames faster than Intel’s Ivy Bridge integrated graphics, but still not fast enough to play newer games smoothly without seriously dropping the detail settings.

The 13.3in display has a fairly standard 1,366×768 resolution, but the matt finish is a nice addition – it helps diffuse light reflections, making it easier to view the screen in direct sunlight or under bright overhead lighting. The backlight is a very bright 300nit, which again makes it easier to use during the day. Unfortunately viewing angles aren’t particularly impressive, although there’s a reasonable amount of screen tilt to make up for it.

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Basic Specifications

Rating *****
Processor AMD A6-4455M
Processor clock speed 2.1GHz
Memory 6.00GB
Memory slots 2
Memory slots free 0
Maximum memory 8GB
Size 20x333x230mm
Weight 1.9kg
Sound Realtek HD Audio
Pointing device touchpad


Viewable size 13.3 in
Native resolution 1,366×768
Graphics Processor AMD Radeon HD 7500G
Graphics/video ports HDMI
Graphics Memory 512MB


Total storage capacity 500GB
Optical drive type none

Ports and Expansion

USB ports 3
Bluetooth yes
Wired network ports 1x 10/100/1000
Wireless networking support 802.11n
PC Card slots none
Supported memory cards SD, SDHC, SDXC, MMC, Memory Stick Pro
Other ports minijack headset port, 1x USB 3.0


Carrying case No
Operating system Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit
Operating system restore option restore partition
Software included Microsoft Office 2010 Starter Edition
Optional extras none

Buying Information

Warranty one year RTB
Price £483