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Samsung Launches New Series 5 Notebooks With Ivy Bridge

With the news free to flow about Intel's new mobile Ivy Bridge CPUs, Samsung held a launch event in New York City on Tuesday to reveal two new additions to its mobile PC line: the 15.6-inch Series 5 notebook and the 14-inch Series 5 500 notebook.

As the launch timing would suggest, both products feature a 3rd generation Intel Core Ivy Bridge processor along with an Nvidia GeForce GPU. Additionally, Samsung reiterated that its Series 9, Series 5 and Series 3 models will also feature the new Ivy Bridge CPUs.

The 15.6-inch Series 5 notebook features an Intel Core i7-3610QM, 8GB of RAM and a 750GB HDD. The graphics power comes courtesy of an Nvidia GeForce GT 630M. Samsung was also keen to point out the "entertainment" aspects of the laptop, thanks in part to the JBL speakers along with a subwoofer featuring "SoundAlive" technology that pitches virtual 3D sound. Users will be able to switch between various modes, such as for music and movies. It will retail for $899.99 when it goes on sale mid-June.

For $100 less, there's the 14-inch Series 5 500 notebook, which instead is powered by an Intel Core i5-3210M processor and packs a 500 GB hard drive. It does, however, get the same Nvidia GeForce GT 630M and 8GB of RAM of its bigger brother. Both Series 5 notebooks have a 1366x768 LCD display, which gives a slight nod to the 14-inch model if you're looking for a greater pixel density.

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The smaller Series 5 also has a couple of extra buttons that give a little extra utility and may save some battery. There's a dedicated button to turn the LCD backlight on and off, which will allow the laptop to keep running its tasks without the sapping power of the screen. For times when the laptop isn't needed at all, there's an Auto button that will toggle the Series 5's Smart Auto Off feature, which can shutdown the computer at a certain specific time, or by measuring network activity. If the computer doesn't hit a certain bandwidth limit within a given range of time, it can be set to shut off. Finally, there's also a "Share" button that accesses Samsung EasyShare with just the click of a button, allowing users to share files.

In terms of weight, the 15.6-inch has an extra half-pound on the 14-incher at 5.5 lbs. Both share the 1.3MP webcam, over 6 hours of battery life, and 802.11 b/g/n wireless connectivity.

“Our latest Series 5 notebooks offer a premium computing experience, thanks to Samsung’s advanced engineering and Intel’s new processors, as well as enviable entertainment features including JBL audio speakers to provide a home theater experience in a mobile PC, whether you’re using it in your office, home or at a hotel,” said Todd Bouman, vice president of marketing at Samsung Enterprise Business Division.  “The power and speed of Intel’s latest processors have enabled us to create even faster, more efficient laptops, and we’re excited to have begun integrating them into these new models and several of our existing designs as well.”

Expect to find these, along with the 13.3-inch and 15-inch second-generation Series 9, the 13-inch and 14-inch Series 5 ULTRA and Series 3 laptops with Ivy Bridge processors beginning by mid-June 2012.

Here's another look at the sleek Series 9:

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Also mentioned at the event were the upcoming Samsung Series 5 Hybrid PC and the Series 7 AIO PC. Details for the U.S. market weren't quite ready yet, so stay tuned.

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Marcus Yam
Marcus Yam served as Tom's Hardware News Director during 2008-2014. He entered tech media in the late 90s and fondly remembers the days when an overclocked Celeron 300A and Voodoo2 SLI comprised a gaming rig with the ultimate street cred.