Home / Computing / Laptop / Samsung Series 9 NP900X3D / Battery Life, Speakers and Verdict

Samsung Series 9 NP900X3D - Battery Life, Speakers and Verdict

Andrew Williams

By Andrew Williams

Reviewed:

Awards

  • Recommended by TR
Samsung Series 9 NP900X3D

Summary

Our Score:

8

User Score:

Samsung Series 9 NP900X3D – Battery Life

The Samsung Series 9 NP900X3D gives you no easy access to the battery unit. It’s a 4-cell 44Wh battery that, like so many other aspects of the laptop, makes a compromise between stamina and weight – getting batteries smaller and lighter in an affordable way is one of the trickiest areas in consumer tech development.

Off a full charge, the Samsung Series 9 NP900X3D will last for six hours, when tasked with ‘normal’ jobs like web browsing, writing emails or documents and other such daily drudgeries that are the fate of all laptops.

This is significantly below the 7.5 hours quoted by Samsung, which you’d only achieve by dimming the backlight to uncomfortable levels, switching off Wi-Fi and setting it to do nothing more taxing than displaying the clock. Still, this is a sound result that’s enough to let the Samsung Series 9 NP900X3D function well as an every-day light duties ultraportable workhorse.

Samsung Series 9 NP900X3D – Speakers

Media is not a huge focus for the Samsung Series 9 NP900X3D, but it does pay some attention to its internal speakers. There are speaker drivers on the bottom of each side of the laptop, with grilles built into the curvature of the underside - making them more difficult to muffle accidentally.

Volume is respectable for a laptop this thick, but the speakers lack the bass power of a laptop that uses larger - or more - drivers, or makes more aggressive use of EQ-altering DSP. They're good enough for watch TV shows and online videos, but for anything more serious headphons are a must.

Should I Buy the Samsung Series 9 NP900X3D?

There’s no doubt that you pay extra for style with the Samsung Series 9 NP900X3D. Its slim and light aluminium body makes this laptop a couple of hundred pounds more than a chunkier laptop that’s probably more powerful.

However, there are serious benefits to the Series 9 approach that go far beyond look and feel. It will slip into a bag without constantly reminding you it’s there through the medium of shoulder pain, and this class-leading portability is only made better by the quick boot-up times of its SSD. It’s quick, it’s fast and it’s convenient.

And, crucially, it costs £100 less than a MacBook Air – while apeing that laptop’s styling more clearly than any other Ultraportable laptop.

You do miss out on a few things here, though. The Samsung Series 9 NP900X3D does not have a touchscreen and it is not desperately powerful – its Core i5 processor variant has significantly less grunt than some other members of the Core i5 family.

There are plenty of rival Windows 8 Ultrabooks out there, but this Samsung is one of the most desirable. Its build is better than the Acer Aspire S7, it's thinner and lighter than the Lenovo IdeaPad Yoga and better-looking than the Dell XPS Duo 12. Sitting next to some of those, the Samsung Series 9 appears far from dynamic, but it is simply a joy to use.

This is a top laptop, but portability and convenience need to be high on your priorities list for its £900 price to make sense.

Verdict

The Samsung Series 9 NP900X3D is an attractive 13-inch laptop that is easy to cast as Samsung’s alternative to the MacBook Air. However, it shouldn’t be dismissed as being all about style. Its combo of low weight, thin frame, a matt screen and SSD storage makes it incredibly portable and convenient. This helps to offset that it doesn’t offer a great amount of power for the price.

Overall Score

8

Scores In Detail

  • Battery Life 8
  • Build Quality 8
  • Design 9
  • Heat & Noise 8
  • Keyboard 8
  • Performance 7
  • Screen Quality 9
  • Touchpad 9
  • Value 8

Jedibeeftrix

June 2, 2013, 3:20 pm

"itting a discrete graphics chip into a shell this small without the
whole laptop melting under use would be tricky, but be aware that the
integrated Intel HD 4000 can only handle older games or less demanding
newer ones at lower settings."

The HD4000 is found on ivy-bridge chips, this is a sandy-bridge chip with HD3000 graphics.

Tsais

July 3, 2013, 10:51 pm

I was gonna say, this reviewer is confused about Intel's Processors...

Not only that, he must also be half blind, thinking that this looks like a Macbook Air... if he said that about an Asus Zenbook, I'd say alright, close enough... but this? pffft... He fails to recognize that this design has its own unique way of being cool.

Better to get a deal on its predecessor, the 900X3C, which has a better (newer) Ivy Bridge processor and a few other small details that are better, cause the 'D' model was made by Samsung to be the stripped down affordable version.

The lack of an (always glossy) touchscreen is very welcome to me. I find vertical touch screens on laptops useless. They don't even have proper digitizers with pressure sensitivity for creative uses with a stylus. Any old school user will find them a glary waste of time, weight and money, unless they can be folded to rest horizontally.

andyd

August 25, 2013, 5:10 pm

Briefly wanted to talk about the dead zones on the Samsung touchpads. I'm using one right now a cheaper Win 7 laptop Series 3 NP300E5A-A02UB and over on the entire left portion of the touchpad seems to losing sensitivity. When I try and move the mouse cursor or tap it to open a link on webpages it doesn't do so on first motion. Its been about a year since buying the laptop and already the cheaper materials are breaking down? I had another Samsung last year which lasted about 15 months before the touchpad stopped responding. Rather annoying knowing Samsung is using cheaper materials even though they are lower end models.

Guest

October 20, 2013, 8:20 pm

So does the 900x3c lack anything (e.g. a non-glassy screen)? The ATIV 9 I was looking at did not have a touch screen. Do you know what model that is?

comments powered by Disqus