Review Samsung Series 3 300E5C Notebook

Martina Osztovits (translated by Peter Krastev), 11/12/2012

Price champion? The 15.6-inch Samsung 300E5C should appeal to price-conscious customers. With its matte screen it is mostly suitable for long-term private or professional use. In terms of performance we have a Core i3-2310M CPU, an integrated Graphics 3000 chip, four gigabytes of RAM, and a conventional 5400 RPM hard drive.

Samsung wants to score some points with the especially good price-performance ratio of the Series 3 models. They are offered in 11.6" (305U1A), 13.3" (300V3A), 17.3" (300E7A), and 15.6-inch form factors, our test unit being the latter. In order to achieve the low price, Samsung relies mainly on 2011 Sandy Bridge processors.

Our test candidate, the 300E5C A06DE, is equipped with an Intel Core i3-2310M CPU and 4 GB of system memory. In terms of video performance, the notebook uses the integrated Graphics 3000 chip. Samsung also offers models with a discrete graphics card, such as the 350V5C S05 (forthcoming) with an AMD Radeon HD 7670M. In terms of storage device, our model is equipped with a conventional hard drive working at 5400 RPM.

Case

The case reminds us very much (except for the lighter gray) of the already reviewed sister model 305E7A (17.3-inch, AMD CPU and GPU) and 355V5C-S05DE (15.6-inch, AMD): the housing is made of black and gray plastic. The only glossy surface is around the keyboard and it proves to be a dirt magnet. On the display lid we find the familiar grooved pattern.

While the resistance to pressure could definitely be improved, the base unit fares well against twisting. The same characteristics of the display lid can also be improved.

The tight hinges prevent one-handed opening of the notebook. They also prevent wobbling of the lid. Samsung has not opted for a transport lock.

Connectivity

The interfaces and their arrangement match that of the 300E5A-S01. The layout favors right-handed users. External monitors can be connected via the digital HDMI or via the analog VGA ports. Samsung could have upgraded at least one of the three USB 2.0 ports to a USB 3.0 standard.

Front: card reader, status LEDs
Front: card reader, status LEDs
Left side: AC jack, RJ-45 (LAN), fan, VGA, HDMI, USB 2.0, headphones, microphones
Left side: AC jack, RJ-45 (LAN), fan, VGA, HDMI, USB 2.0, headphones, microphones
Rear: battery
Rear: battery
Right side: optical drive, 2x USB 2.0, Kensington Lock
Right side: optical drive, 2x USB 2.0, Kensington Lock

Communication

Only the HDD and RAM are easily accessible
Only the HDD and RAM are easily accessible

Fortunately, here we are offered Realtek RTL8168/8111 Gigabit-LAN (10/100/1000 MBit), Atheros AR9485WB-EG Wireless Network Adapter (b/g/n) and Bluetooth V4.0 + HS that support the latest standards.

The quality of the 0.3 megapixel webcam is far from perfect, but it suffices for video telephony.

Accessories

Besides the basic necessities, such as the 48 Wh battery and the 65 W power supply, in the package we find a couple of information pamphlets, including a quick start guide. As is now usual, the user is responsible for the creation of the recovery DVD. This can be accomplished via the Samsung Recovery Solution software.

Maintenance

The hard drive and system memory can easily be reached through the maintenance cover on the bottom. Unfortunately there are no free slots or 2.5-inch bays - any upgrades require the removal of the installed components. Further disassembly, in order to reach and clean the fan and heat sink, is more complex and could void the warranty in case of damage.

Warranty

The manufacturer offers 24 months. This period can be extended depending on the seller.

Input Devices

The input devices are identical to the ones in 305E7A-S03DE and 300E5A-S01:

Keyboard

The chiclet keyboard has a good typing feel and a separate number pad. No faults can be found with the layout either.

Touchpad

The matte surface allows a precise cursor movement. The Elan Smart-Pad supports the modern multi-touch gestures. The two mouse buttons are centrally mounted and respond well.

Keyboard
Keyboard
Touchpad
Touchpad

Display

The installed 15.6-inch screen carries the name AUO21EC and comes from the Chinese manufacturer AU Optronics. The maximum resolution of 1366x768 pixels matches the price range of the notebook. The display is in the now common 16:9 format.

Fortunately, the screen has a matte surface and a good maximum brightness of 212 cd/m². In addition, the user should be satisfied with the relatively uniform illumination of 83%, a relatively low black level of 0.6 cd/m², and a good contrast ratio of 353:1.

196
cd/m²
186
cd/m²
175
cd/m²
207
cd/m²
212
cd/m²
195
cd/m²
198
cd/m²
188
cd/m²
200
cd/m²
Distribution of brightness
Information
Gossen Mavo-Monitor
Maximum: 212 cd/m²
Average: 195.2 cd/m²
Brightness Distribution: 83 %
Black: 0.6 cd/m²
Contrast: 353:1
300E5C vs. sRGB
300E5C vs. sRGB
300E5C vs. AdobeRGB
300E5C vs. AdobeRGB

Subjectively, we liked the color reproduction and contrast. As with most notebooks in this price range, our test unit could not cover the sRGB and AdobeRGB color spaces. However, this is only important for the professional computer graphics users. The color reproduction suffices for office and Internet applications.

In the shades
In the shades

Outdoors, our Samsung test unit scores points with its matte surface. The brightness of 200 cd/m² suffices for use in the shade. There are no disturbing reflections caused by the viewing or light angle. Due to the weather conditions, only one photo in the shade was taken. But we assume that for use in direct sunlight, the brightness should be a bit higher, depending on the user's preferences.

 

The viewing angle stability is typical for a TN panel. Horizontally, the working area is generously wide. Vertically, especially when viewed from below, we quickly noticed color inversion and contrast loss.

Viewing angles Samsung Series 3 300E5C-A06DE
Viewing angles Samsung Series 3 300E5C-A06DE

Performance

Our test candidate is based on the Intel HM75 (Panther Point) chipset (-> manufacturer information), which supports both Ivy Bridge and Sandy Bridge processors. Our device is equipped with an Intel Core i3-2310M Sandy Bridge CPU, 4 GB of system memory, and a 5400 RPM hard drive. The integrated Graphics 3000 provides the graphics output. Thus our test unit is aimed more at office and Internet applications then at demanding 3D tasks.

Alternative Series 3 models, such as the already reviewed 355V5C, have a discrete middle-class graphics solution.

Systeminfo CPUZ CPU
Systeminfo CPUZ Cache
Systeminfo CPUZ Mainboard
Systeminfo CPUZ RAM
Systeminfo CPUZ RAM SPD
Systeminfo GPUZ
Systeminfo HDTune
DPC Latenzen
System information Samsung Series 3 300E5C-A06DE

Processor

The Core i3-2310M by Intel is a dual-core processor of the Sandy Bridge generation. Thanks to Hyperthreading, up to four threads can be calculated simultaneously. Turbo Boost is lacking because of the graphics chip, which depending on the cooling capacity varies its clock frequency between 650 and 1100 MHz. You can read more about the CPU in our article. Our Benchmark list of mobile CPUs provides a performance ranking.

Fortunately the CPU performance in all CPU oriented benchmarks is on the expected level. In addition the CPU and GPU performance remains available on battery power. In comparison to the competition, only the Lenovo ThinkPad Edge E530 with a Core i5 Sandy Bridge CPU is significantly faster.

Cinebench R10
Rendering Multiple CPUs 64Bit
Samsung Serie 3 300E5C-A06DE
HD Graphics 3000, 2310M, Hitachi Travelstar 5K750 HTS547550A9E
7517 Points ∼21%
Lenovo IdeaPad N581-MBA4YGE
HD Graphics (Sandy Bridge), B970, Seagate Momentus 5400.6 ST9500325AS
6721 Points ∼19% -11%
Lenovo ThinkPad Edge E320 NWY3RGE
HD Graphics 3000, 2310M, Hitachi Travelstar Z7K320 HTS723232A7A364
7398 Points ∼21% -2%
Asus Pro P53E-SO102X
HD Graphics 3000, 2330M, WDC Scorpio Blue WD3200BPVT-80ZEST0
7944 Points ∼22% +6%
HP ProBook 4530s-B0Y11EA
HD Graphics 3000, 2350M, Toshiba MK3276GSX
8269 Points ∼23% +10%
Lenovo ThinkPad Edge E530, Sandy Bridge
GeForce GT 630M, 2450M, WDC Scorpio Blue WD7500BPVT-08HXZT1
10408 Points ∼29% +38%
Rendering Single CPUs 64Bit
Samsung Serie 3 300E5C-A06DE
HD Graphics 3000, 2310M, Hitachi Travelstar 5K750 HTS547550A9E
3421 Points ∼14%
Lenovo IdeaPad N581-MBA4YGE
HD Graphics (Sandy Bridge), B970, Seagate Momentus 5400.6 ST9500325AS
3389 Points ∼14% -1%
Lenovo ThinkPad Edge E320 NWY3RGE
HD Graphics 3000, 2310M, Hitachi Travelstar Z7K320 HTS723232A7A364
3446 Points ∼14% +1%
Asus Pro P53E-SO102X
HD Graphics 3000, 2330M, WDC Scorpio Blue WD3200BPVT-80ZEST0
3629 Points ∼15% +6%
HP ProBook 4530s-B0Y11EA
HD Graphics 3000, 2350M, Toshiba MK3276GSX
3799 Points ∼15% +11%
Lenovo ThinkPad Edge E530, Sandy Bridge
GeForce GT 630M, 2450M, WDC Scorpio Blue WD7500BPVT-08HXZT1
4839 Points ∼20% +41%
Cinebench R11.5
CPU Multi 64Bit
Samsung Serie 3 300E5C-A06DE
HD Graphics 3000, 2310M, Hitachi Travelstar 5K750 HTS547550A9E
2.01 Points ∼11%
Lenovo IdeaPad N581-MBA4YGE
HD Graphics (Sandy Bridge), B970, Seagate Momentus 5400.6 ST9500325AS
1.75 Points ∼10% -13%
Lenovo ThinkPad Edge E320 NWY3RGE
HD Graphics 3000, 2310M, Hitachi Travelstar Z7K320 HTS723232A7A364
2.01 Points ∼11% 0%
Asus Pro P53E-SO102X
HD Graphics 3000, 2330M, WDC Scorpio Blue WD3200BPVT-80ZEST0
2.12 Points ∼12% +5%
HP ProBook 4530s-B0Y11EA
HD Graphics 3000, 2350M, Toshiba MK3276GSX
2.2 Points ∼13% +9%
Lenovo ThinkPad Edge E530, Sandy Bridge
GeForce GT 630M, 2450M, WDC Scorpio Blue WD7500BPVT-08HXZT1
2.78 Points ∼16% +38%
CPU Single 64Bit
Samsung Serie 3 300E5C-A06DE
HD Graphics 3000, 2310M, Hitachi Travelstar 5K750 HTS547550A9E
0.84 Points ∼45%
Lenovo ThinkPad Edge E530, Sandy Bridge
GeForce GT 630M, 2450M, WDC Scorpio Blue WD7500BPVT-08HXZT1
1.19 Points ∼64% +42%
Cinebench R10 Rendering Single CPUs 64Bit
3421 Points
Cinebench R10 Rendering Multiple CPUs 32Bit
6223
Cinebench R10 Rendering Single 32Bit
2763
Cinebench R10 Shading 32Bit
2840
Cinebench R10 Shading 64Bit
3068 Points
Cinebench R10 Rendering Multiple CPUs 64Bit
7517 Points
Cinebench R11.5 CPU Single 64Bit
0.84 Points
Cinebench R11.5 CPU Multi 64Bit
2.01 Points
Cinebench R11.5 OpenGL 64Bit
10.8 fps
Help

System Performance

The two PCMark tests, PCMark Vantage and PCMark 7, assess the performance of each individual component and summarize the overall score. Here, a fast storage device has a positive impact, while the graphics performance does not carry as much weight. Overall the system performance was on the expected level for this hardware configuration. Again, only the Lenovo ThinkPad Edge E530 (Core i5-2450MGeForce GT 630M) is significantly better than our test unit. Given the price range, all the devices are equipped with 5400 RPM hard drives. A faster storage device (SSD, hybrid solution or even 7200 RPM HDD) could provide a significant performance boost.

PCMark 7 - Score
Samsung Serie 3 300E5C-A06DE
HD Graphics 3000, 2310M, Hitachi Travelstar 5K750 HTS547550A9E
1922 Points ∼29%
Lenovo IdeaPad N581-MBA4YGE
HD Graphics (Sandy Bridge), B970, Seagate Momentus 5400.6 ST9500325AS
1742 Points ∼26% -9%
Asus Pro P53E-SO102X
HD Graphics 3000, 2330M, WDC Scorpio Blue WD3200BPVT-80ZEST0
1768 Points ∼27% -8%
HP ProBook 4530s-B0Y11EA
HD Graphics 3000, 2350M, Toshiba MK3276GSX
1848 Points ∼28% -4%
Lenovo ThinkPad Edge E530, Sandy Bridge
GeForce GT 630M, 2450M, WDC Scorpio Blue WD7500BPVT-08HXZT1
2170 Points ∼33% +13%
PCMark Vantage - 1024x768 Result
Samsung Serie 3 300E5C-A06DE
HD Graphics 3000, 2310M, Hitachi Travelstar 5K750 HTS547550A9E
5216 Points ∼22%
Lenovo IdeaPad N581-MBA4YGE
HD Graphics (Sandy Bridge), B970, Seagate Momentus 5400.6 ST9500325AS
4122 Points ∼17% -21%
Asus Pro P53E-SO102X
HD Graphics 3000, 2330M, WDC Scorpio Blue WD3200BPVT-80ZEST0
4810 Points ∼20% -8%
HP ProBook 4530s-B0Y11EA
HD Graphics 3000, 2350M, Toshiba MK3276GSX
4805 Points ∼20% -8%
Lenovo ThinkPad Edge E530, Sandy Bridge
GeForce GT 630M, 2450M, WDC Scorpio Blue WD7500BPVT-08HXZT1
6940 Points ∼29% +33%
5.8
Windows 7 Experience Index
Processor
Calculations per second
6.4
Memory (RAM)
Memory operations per second
7.3
Graphics
Desktop performance for Windows Aero
5.9
Gaming graphics
3D business and gaming graphics
6.2
Primary hard disk
Disk data transfer rate
5.8
PC Mark
PCMark Vantage5216 points
PCMark 71922 points
Help

Storage Devices

The installed Hitachi Travelstar 5K750 HTS547550A9E has a capacity of 500GB and works at 5400 RPM. The results of the HDTune and CrystalDiskMark are typical for a 5400 RPM model.

Hitachi Travelstar 5K750 HTS547550A9E
Transfer Rate Minimum: 36.5 MB/s
Transfer Rate Maximum: 80.5 MB/s
Transfer Rate Average: 59.3 MB/s
Access Time: 18.3 ms
Burst Rate: 82.3 MB/s

Graphics Card

The Graphics 3000, integrated into the processor, has already been reviewed numerous times. Although the Core i3 processor has no Turbo Boost function for both its cores, the graphics chip can be overclocked from 650 MHz up to 1100 MHz. You can read more about the graphics chip in our article. Our Benchmark list of mobile Graphics cards and Games list provide performance ranking. The Samsung is mainly aimed at users with fairly moderate demands on 3D performance.

As the comparison chart below demonstrates, our test unit fares well against devices with the same graphics card in both 3DMark tests, 3DMark Vantage and 3DMark06, and in the OpenGL test by Cinebench R11.5. In contrast, the results of the Shading test in both versions of Cinebench R10 (32-bit and 64-bit) are surprisingly low. Lenovo's ThinkPad Edge E530 is the only compared notebook with a discrete AMD Radeon HD 7640G and significantly surpasses our 300E5C in this area. In view of the degree of popularity of the graphics card and the target use, office and Internet application, we did not run any gaming tests. In short, the 300E5C is enough for low settings and resolution in demanding 3D games.

3DMark 06 - 1280x1024 Standard AA:0x AF:0x
Samsung Serie 3 300E5C-A06DE
HD Graphics 3000, 2310M, Hitachi Travelstar 5K750 HTS547550A9E
4400 Points ∼15%
HP ProBook 4530s-B0Y11EA
HD Graphics 3000, 2350M, Toshiba MK3276GSX
3175 Points ∼11% -28%
Lenovo IdeaPad N581-MBA4YGE
HD Graphics (Sandy Bridge), B970, Seagate Momentus 5400.6 ST9500325AS
2577 Points ∼9% -41%
Lenovo ThinkPad Edge E530, Sandy Bridge
GeForce GT 630M, 2450M, WDC Scorpio Blue WD7500BPVT-08HXZT1
7979 Points ∼27% +81%
Asus Pro P53E-SO102X
HD Graphics 3000, 2330M, WDC Scorpio Blue WD3200BPVT-80ZEST0
2855 Points ∼10% -35%
Lenovo ThinkPad Edge E320 NWY3RGE
HD Graphics 3000, 2310M, Hitachi Travelstar Z7K320 HTS723232A7A364
3098 Points ∼10% -30%
3DMark Vantage - 1280x1024 P GPU no PhysX
Samsung Serie 3 300E5C-A06DE
HD Graphics 3000, 2310M, Hitachi Travelstar 5K750 HTS547550A9E
1329 Points ∼3%
HP ProBook 4530s-B0Y11EA
HD Graphics 3000, 2350M, Toshiba MK3276GSX
1249 Points ∼3% -6%
Lenovo IdeaPad N581-MBA4YGE
HD Graphics (Sandy Bridge), B970, Seagate Momentus 5400.6 ST9500325AS
819 Points ∼2% -38%
Lenovo ThinkPad Edge E530, Sandy Bridge
GeForce GT 630M, 2450M, WDC Scorpio Blue WD7500BPVT-08HXZT1
3724 Points ∼8% +180%
Asus Pro P53E-SO102X
HD Graphics 3000, 2330M, WDC Scorpio Blue WD3200BPVT-80ZEST0
1095 Points ∼2% -18%
Cinebench R10 - Shading 64Bit
Samsung Serie 3 300E5C-A06DE
HD Graphics 3000, 2310M, Hitachi Travelstar 5K750 HTS547550A9E
3068 Points ∼14%
HP ProBook 4530s-B0Y11EA
HD Graphics 3000, 2350M, Toshiba MK3276GSX
4003 Points ∼19% +30%
Lenovo IdeaPad N581-MBA4YGE
HD Graphics (Sandy Bridge), B970, Seagate Momentus 5400.6 ST9500325AS
2665 Points ∼12% -13%
Lenovo ThinkPad Edge E530, Sandy Bridge
GeForce GT 630M, 2450M, WDC Scorpio Blue WD7500BPVT-08HXZT1
5637 Points ∼26% +84%
Asus Pro P53E-SO102X
HD Graphics 3000, 2330M, WDC Scorpio Blue WD3200BPVT-80ZEST0
4025 Points ∼19% +31%
Lenovo ThinkPad Edge E320 NWY3RGE
HD Graphics 3000, 2310M, Hitachi Travelstar Z7K320 HTS723232A7A364
4209 Points ∼20% +37%
Cinebench R11.5 - OpenGL 64Bit
Samsung Serie 3 300E5C-A06DE
HD Graphics 3000, 2310M, Hitachi Travelstar 5K750 HTS547550A9E
10.8 fps ∼10%
HP ProBook 4530s-B0Y11EA
HD Graphics 3000, 2350M, Toshiba MK3276GSX
7.73 fps ∼7% -28%
Lenovo IdeaPad N581-MBA4YGE
HD Graphics (Sandy Bridge), B970, Seagate Momentus 5400.6 ST9500325AS
7.31 fps ∼7% -32%
Lenovo ThinkPad Edge E530, Sandy Bridge
GeForce GT 630M, 2450M, WDC Scorpio Blue WD7500BPVT-08HXZT1
24.75 fps ∼23% +129%
Asus Pro P53E-SO102X
HD Graphics 3000, 2330M, WDC Scorpio Blue WD3200BPVT-80ZEST0
7.3 fps ∼7% -32%
Lenovo ThinkPad Edge E320 NWY3RGE
HD Graphics 3000, 2310M, Hitachi Travelstar Z7K320 HTS723232A7A364
8.09 fps ∼7% -25%
3D Mark
3DMark 06
 1280x1024
4400 points
3DMark Vantage1661 points
Help

Emissions

System Noise

In idle state, the Samsung seems quite the quiet fellow. Sometimes the fan turns off completely, leaving only the faint noise of the rotating hard drive. Under load, we measured a noise level of 41.3 dB(A) with the standard settings. Those who find this too loud can use the Easy Settings tools to turn on the Silent Mode. Then the maximum volume under load falls to 35.3 dB(A) - at the expense of performance, since the clock frequencies are reduced. No fan control abnormalities were noticed.

Noise Level

Idle 30.3 / 31.2 / 31.4 dB(A)
HDD 30.9 dB(A)
DVD 35.3 / dB(A)
Load 39.8 / 41.3 dB(A)
 
    30 dB
silent
40 dB
audible
50 dB
loud
 
min: , med: , max:    Voltcraft SL-320 (15 cm distance)

Temperature

Stress test
Stress test

Under low load, for which our 300E5C was designed, the temperatures of the surfaces remained within limits. This was not the case with the unrealistic stress test, several hours of 100% CPU and GPU load, where the 50 oC (122 oF) mark was exceeded with the standard settings. In practice, one should expect a problem free lap use.

During the stress test, the temperatures of the two CPU cores and the graphics chip remained in the green. The clock frequency of both cores remained stable. Only the GPU fluctuated at about 950 MHz. No throttling was observed, because the 3DMark06 we ran immediately afterwards ended with insignificant differences compared to a cold run.

Max. Load
 39.2 °C28.6 °C25.2 °C 
 40.4 °C35.4 °C25.6 °C 
 38.6 °C36.8 °C24.9 °C 
Maximum: 40.4 °C
Average: 32.7 °C
24.5 °C28.1 °C46.7 °C
24.9 °C36.4 °C52.2 °C
25.2 °C31 °C47 °C
Maximum: 52.2 °C
Average: 35.1 °C
Power Supply (max.)  63.4 °C | Room Temperature 23.1 °C | Voltcraft IR-360

Speakers

The speakers are located above the keyboard. The sound remains undistorted even at maximum volume, but lacks bass as is usual for devices without a subwoofer. In order to enjoy music, we recommend the use of external speakers or quality headphones. The test of the 3.5mm jack showed no problems.

Battery Life

Power Consumption

The energy consumption of the hardware showed a maximum of 11.2 W in idle, 45.1 W under moderate 3D load with 3DMark06, and 56 W under full load. The Silent Mode not only lower the noise level, but also the clock frequency of the Core i3-2310M processor. Thus the power consumption falls to 23.6 W during the 3DMark06 run and 28 W during the stress test.

Power Consumption

Off / Standby 0.1 / 0.5 Watt
Idle 7.3 / 10.6 / 11.2 Watt
Load 45.1 / 56 Watt
 
Key: min: , med: , max:         Voltcraft VC 940

Battery Life

Our test candidate is equipped with a lithium-ion battery with a 48 Wh capacity. Thus with minimum brightness, energy-saving profile, and Wi-Fi modules turned off, it reached a battery run time of almost 7 hours in the Battery Eater Reader's test. Under load, simulated by the Classic test of the Battery Eater tool, with maximum brightness, high performance profile, and wireless modules turned on, the battery was empty after about 1.5 hours. This value is the minimum battery run time.

In reality, with 150 cd/m² brightness and a full battery you can surf the Internet via Wi-Fi hotspots for about 4 hours and watch DVDs for about 3.5 hours. In both tests the energy-saving profile was chosen, which suffices for these tasks.

HP's ProBook 4530s and Lenovo's IdeaPad N581 offer similar battery life. Asus' Pro P53E with a 56 Wh battery and significantly lower screen brightness offers longer run times. Lenovo's ThinkPad Edge E530 fares worse under load because of its discrete graphics card, but offers better video performance.

Readers Test
Maximale Akkulaufzeit (Readers Test)
Classic Test
Minimale Laufzeit  (Classic Test)
Charge
Battery Runtime
Idle (without WLAN, min brightness)
6h 51min
WiFi Surfing
4h 02min
DVD
3h 31min
Load (maximum brightness)
1h 27min

Verdict

In the Series 3, Samsung has focused on good value for money. It is positive that these savings have not come at the expense of user essentials, such as the screen and the input devices. The display is not among the brightest, but in conjunction with the matte surface, it suffices for outdoor use in the shade. In addition one can work comfortably with both the keyboard and the touchpad.

On the other hand, Samsung has saved from the interfaces. The user should have had access to at least one USB 3.0 port. Furthermore, we could have seen a modern Ivy Bridge processor. Instead, Samsung has fitted the notebook with a Core i3-2310M processor from the Sandy Bridge generation. The application performance matches the conventional hard drive. The competition does not offer anything better in this price range either.

In terms of workmanship, there is still room for improvement. The direct rivals are consistently better. HP even uses brushed aluminum for the surfaces of its ProBook.

Our test candidate is not aimed at demanding 3D tasks, such as computer games. Instead, its focus is more on office and Internet use. Those needing more graphics and system performance should look at Lenovo's ThinkPad Edge E530 with its dedicated video card. This notebook also boasts a somewhat brighter screen, but offers a shorter battery life under load.

static version load dynamic

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In Review: Samsung Series 3 300E5C-A06DE, courtesy of:
In Review: Samsung Series 3 300E5C-A06DE

Specifications

Samsung Serie 3 300E5C-A06DE

:: Processor
:: Mainboard
Intel HM75 (Panther Point)
:: Memory
8192 MB
:: Graphics adapter
Intel HD Graphics 3000, Core: 650 MHz, igdumd64 8.15.10.2618
:: Display
15.6 inch 16:9, 1366x768 pixel, AUO21EC, glossy: no
:: Harddisk
Hitachi Travelstar 5K750 HTS547550A9E, 500 GB 5400 rpm
:: Soundcard
Realtek ALC269 @ Intel Panther Point PCH - High Definition Audio Controller
:: Connections
3 USB 2.0, 1 VGA, 1 Kensington Lock, Audio Connections: Headphones, microphones, Card Reader: Multi memory card reader: MMC, SDHC, SDXC, SD,
:: Networking
Realtek RTL8168/8111 Gigabit-LAN (10/100/1000MBit), Atheros AR9485WB-EG Wireless Network Adapter (b g n ), V4.0 + HS (Atheros AR3012) Bluetooth
:: Optical drive
TSSTcorp CDDVDW SN-208BB
:: Size
height x width x depth (in mm): 33 x 367.9 x 243
:: Weight
2.3 kg Power Supply: 0.22 kg
:: Battery
48 Wh Lithium-Ion
:: Price
600 Euro
:: Operating System
Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium 64 Bit
:: Additional features
Webcam: 0.3 MP (SXGA), Keyboard: Chiclet, 104 Tasten, Number pad, Keyboard Light: no, Power supply: 65 W, Warranty information, Quick start guide, Various Samsung Tools, Microsoft Office Starter 2010 (Trial), 24 Months Warranty

 

Samsung Series 3 300E5C: simple and cheap
Samsung Series 3 300E5C: simple and cheap
AC jack, LAN
AC jack, LAN
VGA, HDMI, USB 2.0, headphones, microphone
VGA, HDMI, USB 2.0, headphones, microphone
Not left-handed friendly
Not left-handed friendly
On the right: no disturbing cables
On the right: no disturbing cables
2x USB 2.0, Kensington Lock slot
2x USB 2.0, Kensington Lock slot
The bottom can become hot
The bottom can become hot
Both system memory slots are taken: a total of 4 GB
Both system memory slots are taken: a total of 4 GB
Conventional 5400 rpm hard drive
Conventional 5400 rpm hard drive
0.3 MP Webcam
0.3 MP Webcam
48 Wh battery
48 Wh battery
Card reader
Card reader
Sandy Bridge hardware inside
Sandy Bridge hardware inside
Entirely made of plastic
Entirely made of plastic
Groove pattern on the display lid
Groove pattern on the display lid
Tight hinges
Tight hinges
Maximum opening angles
Maximum opening angles
Matte screen
Matte screen
Brightness suffice for outdoor use in the shades
Brightness suffice for outdoor use in the shades
Relatively good contrast
Relatively good contrast
Comfortable keyboard
Comfortable keyboard
Number pad
Number pad
The precise touchpad support multi-touch gestures
The precise touchpad support multi-touch gestures
Good, but not outstanding battery life
Good, but not outstanding battery life

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Pro

+Matte screen
+Contrast and brightness
+High-quality input devices
+Good application performance
+Extensive communication capabilities
 

Cons

-No modern hardware
-No USB 3.0

Shortcut

What we liked

The good communication features and handy screen.

What we'd like to see

USB 3.0 and the current processor generation.

What surprises us

No corners were cut with the input devices and the display.

The competition

Affordable 15-inch notebooks with matte screens, for example HP's ProBook 4530s, Lenovo's IdeaPad N581, Asus' Pro P53E, and Lenovo's ThinkPad Edge E530.

Rating

Samsung Serie 3 300E5C-A06DE
11/02/2012 v3
Martina Osztovits

Chassis
80%
Keyboard
82%
Pointing Device
82%
Connectivity
64%
Weight
84%
Battery
84%
Display
79%
Games Performance
64%
Application Performance
88%
Temperature
77%
Noise
88%
Add Points
80%
Average
79%
81%
Office *
Weighted Average

> Notebook / Laptop Reviews and News > Reviews > Archive of our own reviews > Review Samsung Series 3 300E5C Notebook
Author: Martina Osztovits, 2012-11-12 (Update: 2013-06- 6)