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Specifications review on the Samsung 5 Series

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Last response: in Laptops & Notebooks
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May 12, 2012 12:21:40 AM

Hello everyone; As always I appreciate the community feedback before diving into a purchase.

I have this Acer Aspire 5920G, and I believe it's time for a change. It's 3 or 4 years old, and despite being functional and all, it has failed me a couple of times...

The main reason is because it feels heavy and bulky. I'm studying at night while working during the day, far from my parents' house, but I usually come in for a visit every weekend and I have to carry my laptop back and forth. Plus, the battery is really poor, and it heats a lot near the GPU exhaust.

So, I thought I should go with a more compact notebook. Unfortunately some of the machines that caught my eye like:

Dell XPS 13
HP Envy Spectre
Samsung 9 Series

are either not available, or the price range is a bit uncomfortable.

I use my laptop to work, mostly. I do use some of the Adobe tools at work, like Photoshop and Illustrator (which never were a problem on this machine (NVIDIA 9500M 512MB)) and CAD, but most of the work comes from text editors. As for video games, I can't say I don't enjoy getting owned in League of Legends once in a while, so if I could still run it, would be cool; otherwise, I can cope with that.

So, I am almost decided to purchase the Samsung Series 5 .

I'm basically wondering if I will have that 'wow' feeling, considering the machine I use at the moment. Looks like it has an i5 @ ~ 1.60GHz, how different will it be from the Core 2 Duo @ 2.0? The i5 is still a 2 core CPU, right? Let's say power consumption has been decreased (which is great!), is there anything else that would make this machine outperform the one I have at the moment?

What about the video card? Is there a huge performance gain from GDDR2 to GDDR5?

I'm sorry for my unlinked questions, but I've never been into laptops untill I had to. I'm just wondering if this purchase will actually be worth it, or if I should just wait for "something" untill my current machine (in decent condition) wears out?

Thanks in advance!
a c 457 D Laptop
May 12, 2012 12:57:36 AM

Generally speaking, the Samsung's CPU is marginally slower than the Core 2 Duo in the Acer. Intel's 2nd generation Sandy Bridge Core i3/i5/i7 have about 20% better performance than the Core 2 Dou/Quad counterparts at the same clockspeed. Therefore, a Core i5 @ 1.6GHz is roughly equal to a Core 2 Duo @ 1.92GHz. All mobile Core i5 CPUs are dual core.

Mobile Core i5 CPUs consumes less power than mobile Core 2 Duo CPUs. However, longer battery life is relative... While the Core i5 does consumes less power, if the battery in the Samsung is smaller or holds less of a charge than the Acer's laptop, then overall battery life has decreased.

Assuming the same graphics card while comparing GDDR2 vs. GDDR5 RAM, GDDR5 RAM would probably provide between a 10% - 15% increase in performance. But that's assuming the video card is fast enough to take advantage of the faster RAM. Regardless, the Radeon Mobility HD 7550M is more powerful than the GT 9500m.

If the purpose is to play games, then the Samsung will give you better performance in games because of the graphics card. But the Radeon HD 7550M is only considered a mainstream laptop card so don't expect too much from it. It should be able to play most games at low settings.
May 12, 2012 1:01:23 PM

Hello and thank you for your reply jaguarskx.

The general purpose of the machine is not to play games (I roughly have time to play the only game I enjoy for now - League of Legends, which is nothing too fancy), but should be able to handle graphic applications like AutoCAD and Photoshop smoothly. I can tell the difference from this laptop and my desktop which has a way better video card; it feels so much smoother that you can notice the easing effects when sliding up and down the canvas. I probably won't get that in a small notebook, but the closer it is, the better.

By your reply, it seems like a small amount of the money will go to a small boost in performance, as the rest goes to portability/mobility.

The Samsung 5 series (14"), where I live, sits at 900€ (which is around 1160$ or 720£). Does the price feels right?

jaguarskx said:
Generally speaking, the Samsung's CPU is marginally slower than the Core 2 Duo in the Acer. Intel's 2nd generation Sandy Bridge Core i3/i5/i7 have about 20% better performance than the Core 2 Dou/Quad counterparts at the same clockspeed. Therefore, a Core i5 @ 1.6GHz is roughly equal to a Core 2 Duo @ 1.92GHz. All mobile Core i5 CPUs are dual core.

Mobile Core i5 CPUs consumes less power than mobile Core 2 Duo CPUs. However, longer battery life is relative... While the Core i5 does consumes less power, if the battery in the Samsung is smaller or holds less of a charge than the Acer's laptop, then overall battery life has decreased.

Assuming the same graphics card while comparing GDDR2 vs. GDDR5 RAM, GDDR5 RAM would probably provide between a 10% - 15% increase in performance. But that's assuming the video card is fast enough to take advantage of the faster RAM. Regardless, the Radeon Mobility HD 7550M is more powerful than the GT 9500m.

If the purpose is to play games, then the Samsung will give you better performance in games because of the graphics card. But the Radeon HD 7550M is only considered a mainstream laptop card so don't expect too much from it. It should be able to play most games at low settings.
a c 457 D Laptop
May 12, 2012 1:17:08 PM

I'm not very familiar with AutoCAD, but if it can make use of a more powerful video card, then that would be a benefit of buying a new laptop. I think only some of the effects in PhotoShop is dependent on the video card so I assume you will see less of an impact with a new laptop.

Since your old laptop has failed on you a couple of times and bulkier than you would like, then I would say it's worth spending money on a new laptop as long as you realize that it's more of a lateral move than an upgrade in performance. Even if AutoCAD can make use of a more powerful graphics core.
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