Finally a Modern Workhorse – Samsung Ultrabook NP540

With my T4220 simply refusing the CS6 workload I do these days w/ RAW files, I had to use the coffin of a Vaio until I could get a proper new portable work horse, and at long last here we are:

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Samsung Ultrabook Series 5 (NP540U3C-A03UB). Aluminum body, 10-point touch screen, separate mouse buttons, and very decent guts. Thanks to this guy being a display model from Best Buy and a recall by Samsung (to promote the Ativ brand of basically identical machines) the price was too good to pass up.

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Real kicker is that unlike the Ativ Ultrabooks, this guy uses only 1 soldered on 4gb of ddr3 ram with an extra slot for expansion; the HHD is a slim version of a standard sata 2.5″ and that makes it easily serviceable and removable, which is a huge plus over soldered on SSD on newer models (and not to mention 500/whatever GB of playground vs strict 128). Specs are solid too, for the price, type, and size of this thing.

This is actually a second Ultrabook style in the household, my dad’s work Dell XPS being the first one-

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Sammy is a bit more chubby, but that’s to be expected from having a standard HDMI port and a regular HDD and RAM (possibility) instead of being a non-upgradeable “phone/tablet.”

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Keyboard on the Dell feels surprisingly cheap despite being backlit, the mouse buttons aren’t separated and hard to feel by touch which I find ironic given than even by MSRP the Dell is a more premium horsey. That and the lack of touch screen. And that plastic surface on the keyboard half despite sporting the same aluminum body. It’s a Dell, go figure.

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And lastly the Dell’s specs for comparison-

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Not too bad, but definitely a gen older than the Sammy.

Win 8 isn’t horrible thus far, as odd as that is to admit. The new smartphone app style menu can be easily hidden and everything else is pretty much the same as 7 minus certain options being harder to get to, like showing known file type extensions. No biggie really.

Battery life is marked at ~9 hours which is uncanny even compared to my old T4220 with 2 batteries on board.

Quad core and ddr3 surely show they prowess in picture processing, so I am extremely pleased in that department even if this guy lacks a proper graphics card to make everything super-duper-uber crisp.

And the form, weight, look and feel is very professional. Huge step-up from my plasticy T4420 albeit not having a Wacom screen.

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