Today Samsung announced new laptops for its Notebook lineup, the Notebook 7 and the Notebook 7 Force. The regular Notebook 7 comes in two sizes, 13- and 15-inches, while the Force only comes in the 15-inch form factor. Samsung is targeting the ultra-thin market with these laptops, and it looks like the Notebook 7 and Notebook 7 Force will go head to head with Huawei's Matebook and may provide a good value compared to Microsoft's Surface products and Apple's MacBook Pro.
The Notebook 7 looks remarkably like a MacBook, and that's likely what Samsung was going for, seeing as it has a very sizable trackpad, especially on the 15-inch model. It's not quite as big as the ones found on Apple's MacBooks, but it is much larger than what you would usually see on a Windows-based machine. The 13-inch model is, of course, lighter than the 15-inch model, with the 13-inch weighing 2.8 pounds and the 15-inch weighing 3.7 to 4 pounds. The backlit keyboards are mostly identical between the 13 and 15-inch versions except for the numpad that is present only on the 15-inch version. The Notebook 7 features a large 55Wh battery and a 1080p display for every variant.
The Notebook 7’s hardware seems pretty good. Samsung uses an 8th-gen Intel processor for all versions, and although the company didn't specify a specific model or even if they are i5 or i7, we can probably expect it to be a quad-core. Samsung also an Nvidia MX250 GPU upgrade, which is significantly faster than Intel's integrated UHD graphics but consume mores power. You also can get up to 16GB of RAM and up to a 512GB NVMe SSD. It's not clear how easy it would be to upgrade either the RAM or the storage, however.
The Notebook 7 is largely geared towards those who prefer battery life over performance, which is important for people on the go. Starting at $999, Samsung positions the Notebook 7 as a product that is far cheaper than its competitors but doesn't fall very far behind, making it a better value than the more high-end Surface and Macbook. The Notebook 7 also goes toe-to-toe with Huawei's Matebook, which occupies a similar price bracket. The Notebook 7 may prove to be a good alternative for those who can't justify buying more premium laptops.
|Specifications||13 inch||15 inch (Intel iGPU)||15 inch (Nvidia dGPU)|
|Dimensions||12.2 x 8.7 x .5"||14.1 x 9.4 x .6"||14.1 x 9.4 x .6"|
|Weight||2.84 lbs||3.73 lbs||3.95 lbs|
|OS||Windows 10 Home||Windows 10 Home||Windows 10 Home|
|CPU||Intel 8th Gen||Intel 8th Gen||Intel 8th Gen|
|Graphics||Intel UHD iGPU||Intel UHD iGPU||Intel UHD iGPU|
|Memory||Up to 16 GB||Up to 16 GB||Up to 16 GB|
|Storage||Up to 512 GB NVMe||Up to 512 GB NVMe||Up to 512 GB NVMe and one additional slot|
|WLAN||802.11ac wave2 2x2||802.11ac wave2 2x2||802.11ac wave2 2x2|
|Camera/mic||720p/dual array mic||720p/dual array mic||720p/dual array mic|
|Audio||Dolby Atmos stereo||Dolby Atmos stereo||Dolby Atmos stereo|
|Battery||55 Wh||55 Wh||55 Wh|
|Ports||USB-C x 1, USB 3.0 x 2, HDMI, micro SD, headphone/mic jack||USB-C x 1, USB 3.0 x 2, HDMI, micro SD, headphone/mic jack||USB-C x 1, USB 3.0 x 2, HDMI, micro SD, headphone/mic jack|
Notebook 7 Force
The Force version of the Notebook 7 is simply a slightly more powerful model. It's only slightly larger and heavier than the regular Notebook 7, but it features much beefier hardware: a GTX 1650, 16GB of RAM (not up to), a 512GB NVME SSD with room for another SSD and an HDD, and Gigabit Ethernet. The GTX 1650 is obviously not the fastest Nvidia GPU out there, but its power efficiency will be very appealing to those that want long battery life. The downside to offering so much more expansion and power is the battery, which has been reduced to 43Wh. The Force seems to be targeting a segment that likes portability and battery life but doesn't mind compromising a bit on the battery life to get some more performance.
Starting at $1499, the Force is much more expensive than the regular Notebook 7, though the additional storage and Gigabit Ethernet port will look appealing to some buyers. Samsung is also hoping the GTX 1650 will appeal to users who work in applications like Adobe Photoshop. Gamers who play less demanding titles might also find the 1650 a reason to buy the Force instead of the regular Notebook 7.
|Dimensions||14.2 x 9.4 x .7"|
|OS||Windows 10 Home|
|CPU||Intel 8th Gen|
|Graphics||Nvidia GTX 1650|
|Storage||512 GB NVMe and one additional SSD and one additional HDD slot|
|WLAN||802.11ac wave2 2x2, Gigabit Ethernet|
|Camera/mic||720p/dual array mic|
|Audio||Dolby Atmos stereo|
|Ports||USB-C x 1, USB 3.0 x 2, HDMI, micro SD, Ethernet, security slot, headphone/mic jack|
Overall, Samsung's lineup looks well equipped to dive into the ultra-thin market. Though it will be hard to stand out in such a crowded space, Samsung does have to start somewhere. At least on paper, the Notebook 7 lineup looks like it will be solid competition. All variants will be available for preorder on July 12, and launch on July 26.