Samsung this week introduced new versions of its Notebook 9 ultra-thin and ultra-light laptops. The new mobile PCs are upgraded with Intel’s new Core i5/i7 Kaby Lake processors, new displays as well as a slightly different design that is slightly thicker, but is also slightly lighter. In fact, Samsung claims that its new Notebook 9 13” is the lightest laptop on the market at 816 grams (1.8 lbs), although some would claim that the 13.3-inch Lavie-Z holds that title starting at 720 grams (1.72 lbs).

Samsung positions its Notebook 9 machines for business travelers who have rather special requirements and who are willing to make certain tradeoffs. Apart from the new Intel Core i5/i7 processors featuring the Kaby Lake microarchitecture, the key improvement of the Notebook 9 are their new display panels with FHD resolution and a maximum brightness of 500 nits (their typical brightness is 350 nits), which is especially useful for those working outdoors. Quite naturally, at 500 nits the screens consume a lot of power, but the Notebook 9 laptops come batteries that have 30 Wh capacity, which is lower when compared to thin and light systems from Apple (41.4 Wh), Dell (60 Wh) and HP (38.4 Wh), but which helps to reduce weight (at the end of the day, not a lot of people have to work under direct sunlight). Samsung claims that the Notebook 7 can last seven hours on one charge, enough for office workers and even long-haul flights. As an added bonus, the Notebook 9’s monitors can display videos with HDR enhancements (the manufacturer does not reveal whether we are dealing with HDR10, but that is a likely situation).

The Notebook 9 laptops from Samsung can be equipped with up to 16 GB of dual-channel DDR4 memory, which is a rare option for contemporary ultra-thin laptops, many of which come with 8 GB of DRAM (but this may change in 2017). Meanwhile, when it comes to storage, Notebook 9’s SSDs top at 256 GB, but Samsung integrated a MicroSD card reader and hence road warriors may easily add storage space if needed. Connectivity-wise, Samsung’s Notebook 9 machines offer two USB Type-A, one USB Type-C as well as an HDMI port. For connectivity, a 2×2 802.11ac Wi-Fi + BT 4.1 wireless module is present.

The key selling points of the Samsung Notebook 9 range are their weight and dimensions: the 13” model is 13.9 mm thick, weighs 816 grams, whereas the 15” model is 14.9 mm thick, and weighs 984 grams. The laptops are thicker when compared to HP’s Spectre and Apple’s MacBook, but they are still thinner than Dell’s XPS 13. Moreover, when it comes to weight, the Notebook 9 are considerably lighter than (almost all) laptops in their class.

Comparison of Ultra-Thin Notebooks
  Samsung
Notebook 9 13"
Samsung
Notebook 9
15"
Dell XPS 13 HP Spectre Apple MacBook (2016)
Screen Resolution 1920×1080 with up to 500 cd/m² brightness and 95% sRGB color gamut 1920×1080 3200×1800 1920×1080 2304×1440
CPU SKU Core i5-7200U
Core i7-7500U
Core i7-7500U Core i3-7100U
Core i5-7200U
Core i7-7500U
Core i5-7200U
Core i7-7500U
Core m3-6Y30
Core m5-6Y54
Core m7-6Y75
Base 2.5 GHz 2.7 GHz 2.4 - 2.7 GHz 2.5 - 2.7 GHz 1.1 - 1.3 GHz
Boost 3.1 GHz 3.5 GHz 3.1 - 3.5 GHz 3.1 - 3.5 GHz 2.2 - 3.1 GHz
Graphics HD Graphics 620 (24 EUs) Intel HD Graphics 515 (24 EUs)
RAM 8-16 GB 8 GB 4-16 GB 8 GB 8 GB
  DDR4 LPDDR3
Storage 256 GB SSD
SATA
256 GB SSD
NVMe
128 GB SATA
256 GB NVMe
512 GB NVMe
1 TB NVMe
 
256 GB SSD
512 GB SSD
1 TB SSD

PCIe NVMe
256 GB SSD
512 GB SSD

PCIe 3.0 x2
Wi-Fi 2×2 802.11ac Wi-Fi
USB 3.1 × Type-C (unknown speed) 1 × Type-C 3 × Type-C -
3.0 2 × Type-A 2 × Type-A - × Type-C
2.0 × Type-A -
Thunderbolt - 1 × TB 3 2 × TB 3 -
HDMI 1 - -
Card Reader MicroSD SD -
Fingerprint Sensor Yes No
Other I/O Microphone, stereo speakers, audio jack
Battery 30 Wh 60 Wh 38 Wh 41.4 Wh
Thickness 13.9 mm 14.9 mm up to 15 mm 10.4 mm up to 13.2 mm
Weight 816 grams
1.8 lbs
984 grams 2.17 lbs 1.2 - 1.29 kg
2.7 - 2.9 lbs
1.10 kilograms
2.45 lbs
920 grams
2.03 lbs
Price ~$1000 ~$1200 $799+ $1100 / 256 GB
$1500 / 512 GB
$1800 / 1 TB
$1300 m3
$1600 m5
$1750 m7

Samsung did not announce MSRP or ETAs for its new Notebook 9 PCs, but it is logical to assume that the systems are set to arrive early in 2017. As for pricing, it is likely that the market segment that the manufacturer targets with the Notebook 9 family will not change with the arrival of new models, so we are looking at something like $1000+ for 13” models and something that starts at $1200 for 15” models.

In the meantime, for a limited period Amazon in the U.S. is selling out the previous-gen Samsung Notebook 9 13” (NP900X3L-K06US) for $749.99 and the Samsung Notebook 9 15” (NP900X5L-K02US) for $849.99.

Related Reading:

Source: Samsung

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  • Samusux - Sunday, December 25, 2016 - link

    Are you joking, Why are you even here... Reply
  • uRtard - Friday, December 30, 2016 - link

    get a load of this dumbfuck lmao Reply
  • Samus - Sunday, January 1, 2017 - link

    In 20 years my handle has never been trolled. Congrats on wasting the time and taking the effort to make an entirely fake user account you will use exclusively to respond to comments I leave that your alter ego disagrees with.

    Seek help.
    Reply
  • prisonerX - Friday, December 23, 2016 - link

    I can't understand why LTE isn't standard in laptops, or at least an common option. Reply
  • kaidenshi - Friday, December 23, 2016 - link

    At one time, the Dell Latitude business class laptops had a GSM SIM slot and an extra PCIe slot for the modem. I've found this capability on the D620/630 and several models that came after it. I don't know if they still do this today; I haven't worked on a Latitude since about 2012, but I would be surprised if they stopped putting that functionality in them; the Latitude line was known for ease of repair and upgrades. Reply
  • BrokenCrayons - Friday, December 23, 2016 - link

    I can confirm the Latitude e6440 (Haswell-era hardware) can handle an internal mobile broadband card. We've got lots of them at the office. I also know the current Skylake Latitude e7470 has an LTE option for AT&T, Sprint, or Verizon so they're continuing to offer the capability to business buyers.

    Smartphone hotspots and tethering (or directly performing work on a phone) have made them less of a necessity for our traveling sorts though. I could see them abandoning the feature as a more likely case than carrying it forward to future models.
    Reply
  • nathanddrews - Friday, December 23, 2016 - link

    I just assume it's so that carriers/ISPs can sell a specific, locked down hotspot device under contract that you will need to upgrade annually instead of expensive laptops that might have a longer cycle.

    Personally, I miss the PCMCIA cellular cards (I don't miss the slow speeds, however). Most of the USB devices sold now are really unwieldy and feel like they'll snap off at any moment.
    Reply
  • Andrei Frumusanu - Friday, December 23, 2016 - link

    The added hardware cost is insignificant however the added licensing cost is absolutely huge as fees are percentages of total device retail price. Simply adding LTE to a laptop possibly might add 15-20% to its price. Reply
  • Samus - Friday, December 23, 2016 - link

    HP Elitebooks since G2 come with a Qualcomm Gobi 4000 in most configurations...especially the 1020/1040 (they have a sim slot on the EXTERIOR it's confusable with a microSD card since it ejects the same way, might be a dual purpose slot now that I think about it.

    Anyway, newer models come with a Gobi 5000. Can always be added cheap if it isn't included with the configuration you order. You have to buy an HP card though since certain models are white listed, aka, don't put a Lenovo card in an HP.
    Reply
  • arsjum - Friday, December 23, 2016 - link

    Anton,

    The pricing for previous models at Amazon is 869 and 1000, respectively - not 749 and 849, as you write here. You must have seen pricing for used units.
    Reply

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