Review Price £999.00
Samsung Ativ Smart PC Pro – Design, Keyboard base and Connectivity
You might remember the Samsung ATIV Smart PC we looked at a little while ago. That’s the ‘budget’ X86 convertible tablet/laptop in Samsung’s Windows 8 range. The next model up is the 11.6-inch Samsung Ativ Smart PC Pro (or 700T1C in model-numer-speak), which replaces the Atom processor with a full-blown Core i5 or i7, and swaps the 1,366 x 768 screen resolution for a lovely Full HD PLS panel. It’s essentially the sequel to the Samsung Series 7 Slate 700T.
Read the full Windows 8 review here
In case this is the first time you’ve come across the ATIV Smart PC range, it’s Samsung’s full Windows 8 version of the Asus Transformer form factor which combines a tablet with a keyboard base to make a laptop. All the ATIV Smart PCs support touch and Wacom stylus goodness.
Where the Atom-based Smart PC is comparable to the Vivo Tab, the Smart PC Pro takes on the Asus Taichi and Microsoft Surface Pro, amongst others.
Wondering which Windows 8 device to get? Have a read of our Best Windows 8 Laptops Tablets Convertibles and PCs roundup
Samsung Ativ Smart PC Pro Design and BuildThough the Smart PC Pro is definitely at the premium end of the market, the tablet itself is constructed using plastic, albeit with a nice brushed metal-effect finish. This is to keep its weight down, as because of the power it packs in the tab alone weighs 884g, considerably heavier than inevitable comparisons to the iPad.
Samsung Ativ Smart PC Pro Keyboard Base and CoverHowever, the keyboard base is made of metal. This lends it a very premium feel at odds with the tablet part, yet again there’s logic behind the difference: this was done to increase the keyboard base’s weight (bringing the entire package to 1.6kg), so that it balances the tablet part and avoids the falling-over-backwards flaw that plagued the Asus Transformer.
Mind you, the dock does not contain an extra battery as does the more budget-oriented Samsung Smart PC’s one, though it does give you extra connectivity. This is a real shame, as the powerful Pro tablet inevitably already offers shorter battery life than its Atom sibling.
The tablet itself is a very svelte 12mm thick, and with keyboard attached matches many Ultrabooks at 22mm. However, if you’d rather have a thinner tablet without losing the physical keyboard, there will be a Microsoft Surface-like keyboard cover that’s a mere 4mm thin.
Samsung Ativ Smart PC Pro ConnectivityThe Smart PC Pro tablet is well-endowed in the connectivity department. The tablet itself sports a headphone jack, full-size USB 3.0 port and microSD card slot for expanding its storage along its top, plus a microHDMI for video output along with the volume rocker on its left.
A physical rotation lock is a welcome touch too. Wireless is particularly comprehensive thanks to Wi-Fi N, Bluetooth 4.0 and 3G/4G wireless broadband with accompanying SIM slot.
The keyboard dock adds a further two USB 2.0 ports (the data interconnect between tablet and keyboard can’t cope with USB 3.0) to the equation, though alas no full-size SD card reader. This is annoying for photographers, and we can only hope Samsung will bring out another dock down the line with a battery and full SD card slot built in.