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Samsung 5-Series NP540U3C-A01 13.3-inch Ultrabook Notebook Review

Samsung 5-Series NP540U3C-A01 13.3-inch Ultrabook Notebook Review - PCSTATS
Abstract: Samsung's 5-Series NP540U3C-A01 Ultrabook is the first touch screen laptop to cross PCSTATS test bench with Windows 8 installed. Our first impressions of this new touch screen interface are positive...
 85% Rating:   
Filed under: Notebooks Published:  Author: 
External Mfg. Website: Samsung May 08 2013   Max Page  
Home > Reviews > Notebooks > Samsung NP540U3C-A01

360° View of the Samsung NP540U3C-A01

On the left hand side of the Samsung NP540U3C-A01 ultrabook we find a tiny DC power socket, an RJ45 Ethernet LAN jack (collapsible), one USB 3.0 port which can be used to recharge a smart phone, a full size HDMI jack, 1/8" headphone/mic port and a mini-VGA dongle connector. The VGA-dongle is not included.

Wired gigabit Ethernet stands at the ready thanks to the nifty fold-out RJ45 bracket on the left edge of the NP540U3C-A01's thin chassis. However, wireless network access is where this Ultrabook really shines - the NP540U3C-A01 offers up '2x2' 802.11abgn WiFi under the hood along with Bluetooth 4.0. Bluetooth 4.0 is great for sync'ing a smart phone or establishing a connection with a nearby bluetooth mouse/printer/keyboard.

On the right side there are two USB 2.0 ports and the SD memory card slot. There are no ports on the back edge of the notebook and just a few status lights along the front.

The back of the display is plain aluminum, except for an embossed logo.

The bottom of the Samsung 5-Series notebook is equally minimalist - just one large panel to access the memory and hard drive bay and a pin hole to power off the battery when doing hardware upgrades. The Li-Polymer battery is located in the front half under the keyboard and can be replaced when it reaches the end of its useful life by removing the entire bottom panel. A pair of tiny 2W speakers are tucked into the bottom corners of the notebook as well. Sound quality is better than expected, with significantly less 'tinny' sound coming from the 2W speakers than might anticipate.

Physically, the Samsung NP540U3C-A01 Ultrabook measures 315mm (12.4 inches) wide, 218mm (8.6 inches) deep and 16-19mm (0.66-0.78" inches) thick. It weighs 1.64kg (3.6 lbs). As with other aluminum skinned notebooks PCSTATS has tested, we recommend getting a padded notebook sleeve to keep it from getting scratched up in your bag or notebook satchel. Waterfield Designs are our preferred vendor for notebook sleeves - their sleeves have literally been around the world with us and held up just as good as new. :-)

Intel's Ultrabook Concept

In this review PCSTATS has been using the "Ultrabook" to describe the Samsung NP540U3C-A01 notebook/laptop, but what exactly does this word mean?

Well, an 'Ultrabook' is a marketing concept brought forth by Intel to sell more energy efficient CPUs and basically the term applies to slim, lightweight and fast notebooks that meet three criteria.

1) The body of the notebook has to less than 0.8" / 21mm thick and "elegant" design.
2) Battery life must exceed 5 hours.
3) The computer must be built with an Intel 'Ivy Bridge' or 'Haswell' Core i5/i7 processor.

In general terms most notebooks being labeled as 'Ultrabooks' also incorporate fast I/O devices like SSDs, USB3.0, hardware level security technologies like Intel Anti-Theft Technology or Intel Identity Protection and the ability to resume from hibernation (S4 power state) in 7 seconds or less.

It's impossible to take a bad photo of this ultrabook from Samsung

Let's take a closer look at the display, keyboard and several other features of the Samsung NP540U3C-A01 ultrabook, next.

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Contents of Article: Samsung NP540U3C-A01
 Pg 1.  Samsung 5-Series NP540U3C-A01 13.3-inch Ultrabook Notebook Review
 Pg 2.  — 360° View of the Samsung NP540U3C-A01
 Pg 3.  360° View of the Samsung NP540U3C-A01 Continued
 Pg 4.  LCD Viewing Angles and a Shoddy Webcam
 Pg 5.  Challenges with the Touch Screen Windows 8 Interface
 Pg 6.  Looking Under the Hood
 Pg 7.  Notebook Benchmarks: MobileMark, Sysmark 2012, PCmark Vantage
 Pg 8.  Notebook Gaming Benchmarks: 3DMark06, 3DMark Vantage, 3DMark 11
 Pg 9.  Notebook Benchmarks: Sandra 2013 CPU / Memory / SSD
 Pg 10.  Notebook SSD Benchmarks: PCmark Vantage HDD Suite, AS SSD
 Pg 11.  Conclusions: Samsung's NP540U3C-A01 Core i5 Ultrabook

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