Notebookcheck

Review Samsung Series 3 355E7C-S05DE Notebook

Sascha Mölck (translated by Liala Stieglitz), 03/19/2013

17.3-inch all-rounder. Samsung wakes curiosity for its new 17.3-incher by combining a Radeon dual-graphics solution with a matte screen. This is accompanied by an 8 GB working memory and a capacious hard drive. Our review reveals whether the laptop is overall convincing.

For the original German review, see here.

According to Samsung's website, the 355E7C is supposed to be a user-friendly family laptop. This evaluation seems plausible on paper. The matte screen allows working in the office, the dual-graphics solution enables playing up-to-date 3D games and, owing to a 750 GB hard drive, there is a lot of storage capacity available. Our test shows whether Samsung's laptop can fulfill the promise made on paper.

We used Toshiba's Satellite L875D-10E (AMD A8-4500M, AMD Radeon HD 7640G + HD 7610M dual-graphics) and Packard Bell's EasyNote LV44HC-137GE (Core i5-3210M, Nvidia GeForce GT 630M) to classify the laptop.

Case

The entire casing is black and Samsung completely relies on plastic. The base unit's top and the lid's back feature matte, brushed metal looks. The illusion of a metal surface is implemented very successfully. The display's frame and the keyboard's bezel are made of a glossy plastic and make fingerprints unavoidable. Packard Bell's laptop is also completely made of plastic. Toshiba uses aluminum components besides plastic in its Satellite.

The base unit is not the most stable. It dents when pressure is applied to the area underneath the touchpad and on the keyboard's left. Also, the base unit's front right corner lifts from the surface when the frame on the keyboard's left is pushed down. The base unit's stiffness could also be better. The same is true for the lid. Its back can be pressed to such an extent that minor picture distortions are seen. The hinges keep the lid firmly in place but rock a bit. It is not possible to open the lid with one hand.

Everything is black
Everything is black
Looks like brushed metal, but is plastic
Looks like brushed metal, but is plastic
Two maintenance covers are available
Two maintenance covers are available

Connectivity

The connectivity of our three comparison models is virtually identical. All three laptops feature today's standard interfaces. Every laptop comes with two USB 3.0 ports. The interface positioning on Samsung's laptop is not compelling. They are mostly in the front of both sides.

Left: Power socket, Gigabit Ethernet, VGA out, HDMI, 2x USB 3.0
Left: Power socket, Gigabit Ethernet, VGA out, HDMI, 2x USB 3.0
Right: Headphone out, microphone in, DVD burner, 2x USB 2.0, Kensington lock slot
Right: Headphone out, microphone in, DVD burner, 2x USB 2.0, Kensington lock slot
Front: Memory card reader (SD, SDHC, SDXC, MMC)
Front: Memory card reader (SD, SDHC, SDXC, MMC)

Communication

Cabled networks are connected via Realtek's RTL8168/8111 Gigabit Ethernet chip. Atheros' AR9485WB-EG chip is installed for Wi-Fi standard 802.11 b/g/n. The reception is very good. Windows' Wi-Fi indicator displayed full deflection both in the router's immediate vicinity (approx. 3 meters) as well as two floors below it. Samsung relies on an Atheros AR3012 chip for Bluetooth 4.0. The installed 1.3 megapixel webcam shoots pale and noisy pictures with a resolution of up to 1280x1024.

Accessories

The usual brochures are included: A warranty information leaflet, a quick start poster and a brief manual about Samsung's preinstalled apps.

Operating System and Recovery

Samsung's laptop is delivered with preinstalled Windows 8 (64 bit) to the customer. A Windows DVD is not included. The typical Windows 8 system recovery for restoring the operating system is opened by keeping the F11 key pressed during the booting process.

Maintenance

The laptop sports two maintenance covers. The smaller one conceals the Wi-Fi module. The larger cover allows accessing the hard drive and working memory. It is not possible to access the fan. The laptop features two working memory banks. Both are fitted with a 4 GB module and thus the laptop is equipped with the maximum RAM. The hard drive can be pulled out easily. It is not secured with any additional screws.

Warranty

Samsung includes a 24 month warranty including pick-up service on its 17.3-inch laptop in some countries. This is equal to Packard Bell's device. The Satellite also comes with a 24 month warranty, but it can be upgraded to 36 months free of charge when registered. The warranty period on Samsung's laptop can also be upgraded. 36 months costs about 65 Euros (~$84) and 100 Euros (~$129) is charged for 48 months. The warranty upgrades have to be purchased and activated within the first 90 days after buying the laptop.

Input Devices

Keyboard

Samsung installs an unlit chiclet keyboard including a number pad in the 17.3-incher. The main keys feature a size of 15 x 15 mm. The keys exhibit a medium drop and pleasant stop. The pressure point is also clearly identifiable. The keyboard only yields slightly while typing. Compared with both contenders, Samsung's laptop sports the best keyboard by far.

Touchpad

The multi-touchpad from Synaptics has a size of 10.2 x 5.5 cm. The sleek surface allows the finger to glide easily. The different multi-touch gestures can be turned on and off in the setup menu. Both mouse keys feature a short drop and a clearly audible and palpable pressure point.

Samsung installs a chiclet keyboard
Samsung installs a chiclet keyboard
The touchpad supports multi-touch
The touchpad supports multi-touch

Display

Samsung equips the 355E7C-S05DE with a matte 17.3-inch screen from AU Optronics. No other screen models are available. Both contenders feature glare-type screens. The average brightness of Samsung's screen is within a good range with 244.7 cd/m². The screen in the Satellite (238.7 cd/m²) is on the same level and the display used in Packard Bell's laptop lags behind a bit (228 cd/m²).

268
cd/m²
233
cd/m²
224
cd/m²
253
cd/m²
245
cd/m²
231
cd/m²
261
cd/m²
245
cd/m²
242
cd/m²
Distribution of brightness
Information
X-Rite i1Pro 2
Maximum: 268 cd/m²
Average: 244.7 cd/m²
Brightness Distribution: 84 %
Center on Battery: 245 cd/m²
Black: 0.78 cd/m²
Contrast: 314:1
Samsung 355E7C vs. sRGB
Samsung 355E7C vs. sRGB
Samsung 355E7C vs. AdobeRGB
Samsung 355E7C vs. AdobeRGB

Neither the black value of 0.78 cd/m² nor the contrast of 314:1 is compelling. The screens in Packard Bell's laptop (0.36 cd/m²; 656:1) and the Satellite (0.42 cd/m²; 548:1) supply much better rates. Samsung's screen covers neither the sRGB nor AdobeRGB color space.

We measured the screen in state of delivery (target color space: sRGB) and ascertained a clear DeltaE 2000 deviation in the gray scales. Magenta and cyan are extremely shifted towards blue (bluish cast; color saturation).

CalMan - color accuracy
CalMan - color accuracy
CalMan - gray scales
CalMan - gray scales
CalMan - color saturation
CalMan - color saturation

Owing to the sufficient brightness and matte surface, Samsung's laptop can be used outdoors.

The screen's viewing angle stability is no surprise. The picture quickly distorts when the vertical viewing angle is changed. The horizontal viewing angle is more generous.

Samsung's laptop outdoors
Samsung's laptop outdoors
Viewing angles: Samsung Series 3 NP355E7C-S05DE
Viewing angles: Samsung Series 3 NP355E7C-S05DE

Performance

With the 355E7C, Samsung has a 17-inch all-rounder in its range. Most tasks are no problem for the device. It easily copes with internet communication, office tasks and video playback. Even up-to-date 3D games are no big challenge for the laptop. The laptop is currently sold for 600 Euros to 700 Euros (~$777 to $907) and is available in other configurations. The differences are found in the installed APU, working memory capacity and hard drive size. The currently least expensive model, featuring AMD A4-4300M APU, 4 GB RAM and a 500 GB hard drive, is available for 490 Euros (~$634). Samsung also sells innumerable other laptops in various sizes and configurations under the name Series 3.

System info CPUZ CPU
System info CPUZ Cache
System info CPUZ Mainboard
System info CPUZ RAM
System info CPUZ RAM SPD
System info GPUZ
System info HWInfo
System information: Samsung Series 3 NP355E7C-S05DE

Processor

Samsung's laptop is powered by AMD's A8-4500M APU, which is part of the Trinity generation. The APU's CPU part is a quad-core processor that clocks with a base speed of 1.9 GHz. The clock rate can be boosted up to 2.8 GHz (AMD Turbo Core).

The CPU processes the CPU single and multi-thread tests of the Cinebench benchmarks stably at 2.3 GHz. The scores are on a par with the Satellite (AMD A8-4500M, Radeon HD 7640G + HD 7610M dual-graphics). However, neither contender can compete with the scores of Packard Bell's laptop (Core i5-3210M, GeForce GT 630M) since it sports the strongest CPU. It is the other way around in the Cinebench R11.5 GL tests. Both Samsung's laptop and the Satellite deliver a much better score than the Packard Bell laptop. The dual-graphics solution is stronger than the GeForce GPU at least in this synthetic benchmark.

Cinebench R10 Rendering Single 32Bit
1709
Cinebench R10 Rendering Multiple CPUs 32Bit
4536
Cinebench R10 Shading 32Bit
4612
Cinebench R10 Rendering Single CPUs 64Bit
2355 Points
Cinebench R10 Rendering Multiple CPUs 64Bit
6524 Points
Cinebench R10 Shading 64Bit
4681 Points
Cinebench R11.5 CPU Single 64Bit
0.56 Points
Cinebench R11.5 CPU Multi 64Bit
1.69 Points
Cinebench R11.5 OpenGL 64Bit
31.57 fps
Help
Cinebench R11.5 - OpenGL 64Bit (sort by value)
Samsung Serie 3 355E7C-S05DE
Radeon HD 7640G + HD 7670M Dual Graphics, A8-4500M, Hitachi Travelstar 5K750 HTS547575A9E384
31.57 fps ∼26%
Packard Bell EasyNote LV44HC-137GE
GeForce GT 630M, 3210M, WDC Scorpio Blue WD5000BPVT-22HXZT3
17.04 fps ∼14% -46%
Samsung Series 3 300E7A-S09DE
GeForce GT 520MX, B960, Hitachi Travelstar 5K750 HTS547550A9E384
18.44 fps ∼15% -42%
Samsung 305E7A-S03DE
Radeon HD 6540G2, A6-3420M, Seagate Momentus 5400.6 ST9500325AS
20.45 fps ∼17% -35%
Toshiba Satellite L875D-10E
Radeon HD 7640G + HD 7610M Dual Graphics, A8-4500M, Hitachi Travelstar 5K750 HTS547575A9E384
22.64 fps ∼18% -28%
Asus K75VJ-TY102H
GeForce GT 635M, 3610QM, Seagate Momentus SpinPoint ST500LM012
25.14 fps ∼21% -20%
Sony Vaio SV-E1712F1EW
Radeon HD 7650M, B980, Hitachi Travelstar Z5K500 HTS545050A7E380
32.68 fps ∼27% +4%
HP ProBook 4740s (B0Y81EA)
Radeon HD 7650M, 2450M, Hitachi Travelstar 5K750 HTS547575A9E384
32.86 fps ∼27% +4%
Cinebench R11.5 - CPU Multi 64Bit (sort by value)
Samsung Serie 3 355E7C-S05DE
Radeon HD 7640G + HD 7670M Dual Graphics, A8-4500M, Hitachi Travelstar 5K750 HTS547575A9E384
1.69 Points ∼10%
Samsung Series 3 300E7A-S09DE
GeForce GT 520MX, B960, Hitachi Travelstar 5K750 HTS547550A9E384
1.68 Points ∼10% -1%
Toshiba Satellite L875D-10E
Radeon HD 7640G + HD 7610M Dual Graphics, A8-4500M, Hitachi Travelstar 5K750 HTS547575A9E384
1.72 Points ∼10% +2%
Sony Vaio SV-E1712F1EW
Radeon HD 7650M, B980, Hitachi Travelstar Z5K500 HTS545050A7E380
1.85 Points ∼11% +9%
Samsung 305E7A-S03DE
Radeon HD 6540G2, A6-3420M, Seagate Momentus 5400.6 ST9500325AS
1.96 Points ∼11% +16%
HP ProBook 4740s (B0Y81EA)
Radeon HD 7650M, 2450M, Hitachi Travelstar 5K750 HTS547575A9E384
2.76 Points ∼16% +63%
Packard Bell EasyNote LV44HC-137GE
GeForce GT 630M, 3210M, WDC Scorpio Blue WD5000BPVT-22HXZT3
2.85 Points ∼16% +69%
Asus K75VJ-TY102H
GeForce GT 635M, 3610QM, Seagate Momentus SpinPoint ST500LM012
6.18 Points ∼35% +266%

System Performance

The system runs mostly smoothly and without hitches. The odd delay was noticed when running programs. We assume that this is due to the stuffed Windows installation. Samsung preinstalls many apps and tools. The PCMark 7 score is on a par with the very identically equipped Satellite (AMD A8-4500, Radeon HD 7640G + HD7610M dual-graphics). The score of Packard Bell's laptop (Core i5-3210M, GeForce GT 630M) is higher than that of the contenders owing to the stronger CPU.

5.9
Windows 8 Experience Index
Processor
Calculations per second
6.7
Memory (RAM)
Memory operations per second
7.3
Graphics
Desktop performance for Windows Aero
6.7
Gaming graphics
3D business and gaming graphics
6.7
Primary hard disk
Disk data transfer rate
5.9
PC Mark
PCMark 71818 points
Help
PCMark 7 - Score (sort by value)
Samsung Serie 3 355E7C-S05DE
Radeon HD 7640G + HD 7670M Dual Graphics, A8-4500M, Hitachi Travelstar 5K750 HTS547575A9E384
1818 Points ∼26%
Samsung 305E7A-S03DE
Radeon HD 6540G2, A6-3420M, Seagate Momentus 5400.6 ST9500325AS
1568 Points ∼23% -14%
Samsung Series 3 300E7A-S09DE
GeForce GT 520MX, B960, Hitachi Travelstar 5K750 HTS547550A9E384
1664 Points ∼24% -8%
Toshiba Satellite L875D-10E
Radeon HD 7640G + HD 7610M Dual Graphics, A8-4500M, Hitachi Travelstar 5K750 HTS547575A9E384
1893 Points ∼27% +4%
HP ProBook 4740s (B0Y81EA)
Radeon HD 7650M, 2450M, Hitachi Travelstar 5K750 HTS547575A9E384
1907 Points ∼28% +5%
Sony Vaio SV-E1712F1EW
Radeon HD 7650M, B980, Hitachi Travelstar Z5K500 HTS545050A7E380
1949 Points ∼28% +7%
Packard Bell EasyNote LV44HC-137GE
GeForce GT 630M, 3210M, WDC Scorpio Blue WD5000BPVT-22HXZT3
2375 Points ∼34% +31%
Asus K75VJ-TY102H
GeForce GT 635M, 3610QM, Seagate Momentus SpinPoint ST500LM012
2601 Points ∼38% +43%

Storage Devices

HD Tune
HD Tune
CrystalDiskMark
CrystalDiskMark

Samsung equips the 355E7C-S05DE with a hard drive from Hitachi's Travelstar 5K750 series. The drive runs at 5400 revolutions per minute and has a storage capacity of 750 GB. The Satellite sports the same model. HDTune ascertained an average transfer rate of 74.3 MB/s. This rate is slightly better than that of the Satellite (67.5 MB/s). CrystalDiskMark recorded a read speed of 98.4 MB/s. The drive again provides a better result than the one in the Satellite (89.96 MB/s). The drive is overall in the midfield of 5400 rpm hard drives.

Hitachi Travelstar 5K750 HTS547575A9E384
Transfer Rate Minimum: 26 MB/s
Transfer Rate Maximum: 96.5 MB/s
Transfer Rate Average: 74.3 MB/s
Access Time: 18.3 ms
Burst Rate: 122.5 MB/s
CPU Usage: 4.5 %

Graphics Card

Samsung installs a dual-graphics solution in the 17.3-inch laptop. That means two graphics cores calculate the displayed pictures. AMD calls this technology Crossfire. The dual-graphics solution could principally be deactivated so that only the integrated GPU is used. The Crossfire array in the 355E7C consists of the integrated Radeon HD 7640G GPU and dedicated Radeon HD 7670M GPU. Both chips support DirectX 11. The HD 7670M is a member of the GPU midrange. More information about the dual-graphics solution can be found on the corresponding data sheet.

The results of the 3DMark benchmarks are on a good level and are marginally better than the scores of the Satellite (AMD A8-4500M, Radeon HD 7640G + HD 7610M dual-graphics). Packard Bell's laptop (Core i5-3210M, GeForce GT 630M) takes the lead in the 3DMark 2006 benchmark. The CPU has a bigger impact on the score in this test and the laptop with the strongest CPU consequently is at an advantage. The GeForce GT 630M can no longer keep up with either dual-core solutions in the newer 3DMark versions. The 3D performance of the dual-graphics solution in Samsung's laptop ranges between the GeForce GT 630M and the latest GeForce GT 730M in the synthetic 3DMark benchmarks (see comparison graph). The gaming benchmarks will reveal whether this is also true in real life.

3D Mark
3DMark 0510288 points
3DMark 06
 1280x1024
8493 points
3DMark Vantage5049 points
3DMark 111628 points
3DMark Ice Storm38486 points
3DMark Cloud Gate3566 points
3DMark Fire Strike529 points
Help
3DMark 11 - 1280x720 Performance (sort by value)
Samsung Serie 3 355E7C-S05DE
Radeon HD 7640G + HD 7670M Dual Graphics, A8-4500M, Hitachi Travelstar 5K750 HTS547575A9E384
1628 Points ∼9%
Samsung Serie 3 355E7C-S05DE
Radeon HD 7640G + HD 7670M Dual Graphics, A8-4500M, Hitachi Travelstar 5K750 HTS547575A9E384
1628 Points ∼9% 0%
Samsung Series 3 300E7A-S09DE
GeForce GT 520MX, B960, Hitachi Travelstar 5K750 HTS547550A9E384
658 Points ∼4% -60%
HP ProBook 4740s (B0Y81EA)
Radeon HD 7650M, 2450M, Hitachi Travelstar 5K750 HTS547575A9E384
1049 Points ∼6% -36%
Sony Vaio SV-E1712F1EW
Radeon HD 7650M, B980, Hitachi Travelstar Z5K500 HTS545050A7E380
1061 Points ∼6% -35%
Samsung 305E7A-S03DE
Radeon HD 6540G2, A6-3420M, Seagate Momentus 5400.6 ST9500325AS
1086 Points ∼6% -33%
Asus K75VJ-TY102H
GeForce GT 635M, 3610QM, Seagate Momentus SpinPoint ST500LM012
1100 Points ∼6% -32%
Toshiba Satellite L875D-10E
Radeon HD 7640G + HD 7610M Dual Graphics, A8-4500M, Hitachi Travelstar 5K750 HTS547575A9E384
1624 Points ∼9% 0%
Acer Aspire V3-571G-53238G1TMaii
GeForce GT 730M, 3230M, Seagate Momentus SpinPoint M8 ST1000LM024 HN-M101MBB
1887 Points ∼10% +16%

Gaming Performance

Owing to the dual-graphics solution, the Series 3 laptop can render up-to-date computer games smoothly on the screen in HD resolution (1366x768 pixels) using medium and frequently even high quality settings. The dual-graphics solution only has problems generating adequate frame rates with very performance-hungry games like Hitman: Absolution or Crysis 3. Games that don't have such high hardware requirements also run smoothly in the Full HD resolution and maximum quality settings, for example FIFA 13Call of Duty: Modern Warfare or Diablo 3.

Micro-stutters occur around 30 fps on AMD's dual-graphics solutions. We noticed these again this time. Generally, the dual-graphics solution's frame rates were disappointing. They were lower than Toshiba's laptop in Diablo 3 and Anno 2070. Here it becomes obvious that Samsung's laptop tends to throttle in high temperatures. This is too bad because Samsung's laptop should theoretically supply better frame rates seeing that it has the stronger dual-graphics solution.

low med.high ultra
The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim (2011) 35.130.825.1fps
Anno 2070 (2011) 74.931.820.6fps
Diablo III (2012) 967465.443.3fps
Dirt Showdown (2012) 37.426.725.5fps
Fifa 13 (2012) 130.8100.999.465fps
Hitman: Absolution (2012) 19.918.713.4fps
Dead Space 3 (2013) 99.245.935.9fps
Crysis 3 (2013) 28.71510.5fps
Samsung Serie 3 355E7C-S05DE
AMD A8-4500M, AMD Radeon HD 7640G + HD 7670M Dual Graphics, Hitachi Travelstar 5K750 HTS547575A9E384
Toshiba Satellite L875D-10E
AMD A8-4500M, AMD Radeon HD 7640G + HD 7610M Dual Graphics, Hitachi Travelstar 5K750 HTS547575A9E384
Packard Bell EasyNote LV44HC-137GE
Intel Core i5-3210M, NVIDIA GeForce GT 630M, WDC Scorpio Blue WD5000BPVT-22HXZT3
Acer Aspire V3-571G-53238G1TMaii
Intel Core i5-3230M, NVIDIA GeForce GT 730M, Seagate Momentus SpinPoint M8 ST1000LM024 HN-M101MBB
Anno 2070
37%
22%
58%
1024x768 Low Preset74.990.6
21%
105
40%
119.68
60%

119.68
60%

1366x768 Medium Preset AA:on 31.845.8
44%
36
13%
50.94
60%

50.94
60%

1366x768 High Preset AA:on AF:2x20.630.1
46%
23
12%
31.63
54%

31.63
54%

Diablo III
3%
-18%
28%
1024x768 Low / off96102.5
7%
90
-6%
132.16
38%
1366x768 Medium / low7472.4
-2%
65
-12%
91.36
23%
1366x768 High AA:on 65.468.1
4%
42
-36%
79.95
22%
Total Average (Program / Settings)
20% / 20%
2% / 2%
43% / 48%

Emissions

System Noise

Samsung's laptop is not noticed adversely due to excessive noise when idling. We measured rates between 30.8 and 34.4 dB. The fan is often inactive. Packard Bell's laptop (30.6 to 31.5 dB) is quieter and the Satellite (32.4 dB) is on a par with Samsung's laptop. The 355E7C did not get very loud during medium load (3DMark 06) with 36.1 dB. The Satellite (38 dB) is louder and Packard Bell's laptop (34.3 dB) is a bit quieter. The laptop from Packard Bell is also the quietest during full load with 36.6 dB (stress test via Prime95 and Furmark). Samsung's laptop (38.7 dB) and the Satellite (40.1 dB) generate more noise.

Samsung's Silent Mode can be activated should the laptop still be too loud. It reduces the fan's noise. This mode can be enabled in Samsung's settings menu. The start icon is located in the task bar. The fan's noise is reduced by slowing the CPU. Activated Silent Mode reduced the clock rate of all four cores to 900 MHz when Cinebench R11.5 benchmark was performed (energy profile: High Performance).

Noise Level

Idle 30.8 / 31.2 / 34.4 dB(A)
HDD 34.1 dB(A)
DVD 37.6 / dB(A)
Load 36.1 / 38.7 dB(A)
 
    30 dB
silent
40 dB
audible
50 dB
loud
 
min: , med: , max:    Voltcraft sl-320 (15 cm distance)

Temperature

Samsung's laptop in the stress test
Samsung's laptop in the stress test

The casing's idle temperatures ranged from 25.8 to 41.2 °C. These rates are too high for idle. This also proves that the fan is often inactive and the heat can accumulate in the casing. The very identically equipped Satellite heats up much less. Surprisingly, Samsung's laptop produced less heat during full load in the stress test (Prime95 and Furmark run simultaneously) at both the peak as well as on average. We measured temperatures between 25.6 and 40.7 °C. Both contenders are roughly on a par with Samsung's laptop during full load.

As already mentioned several times, the 355E7C and Satellite feature very identical equipment. Thus, the CPU and GPU exhibit very similar speeds during load. In AC mode, the CPU started the stress test with strongly fluctuating clock rates (Prime 95 and Furmark run for at least one hour). The processing speed settled to around 1.4 GHz after a short while. There were recurrent fluctuations up to 2.3 GHz and down to 900 MHz. These peaks largely ceased after about 15 minutes. The dual-graphics solution ran through the stress test mostly at a speed of 497 MHz in AC mode. It was recurrently accelerated to 655 MHz for a short time. In rare cases, it was slowed to 335 MHz for just as short a time. The CPU clocked stably with 900 MHz and the dual-graphics solution with 335 MHz when the stress test was performed on battery.

We reran the 3DMark 2006 benchmark right after the stress test in AC-mode. The score dropped slightly compared with the laptop's cold state (7688 points vs. 8493 points). The CPU's temperature settled to 75 °C in AC-mode.

Max. Load
 34 °C32.1 °C26.3 °C 
 33.7 °C32.8 °C26.1 °C 
 38.5 °C30.5 °C26 °C 
Maximum: 38.5 °C
Average: 31.1 °C
26.1 °C31.8 °C39.6 °C
26 °C38.7 °C40.2 °C
25.6 °C33.7 °C40.7 °C
Maximum: 40.7 °C
Average: 33.6 °C
Power Supply (max.)  54 °C | Room Temperature 24.1 °C | Voltcraft IR-360

Speakers

The speakers in Samsung's laptop are located above the keyboard. They produce a low-bass sound that cannot hide a tinny quality. Speech is clear and intelligible. The sound experience can be enhanced by using external speakers or headphones.

Energy Management

Power Consumption

The idle power consumption of 11.6 to 17.1 watts is a bit high. The identically equipped Satellite (8.2 and 15.4 watts) and Packard Bell's laptop (7.6 to 14.2 watts) show better rates. During full load (simultaneous Prime95 and Furmark), Samsung's laptop is satisfied with a power consumption of 54.5 watts and places itself before the Satellite (61.1 watts) and Packard Bell's laptop (81.1 watts). However, it should be kept in mind that the CPU in the 3557C, like the Satellite's CPU, does not clock at full speed (throttling).

Power Consumption

Off / Standby 0.2 / 0.8 Watt
Idle 11.6 / 17 / 17.1 Watt
Load / 54.5 Watt
 
Key: min: , med: , max:         Voltcraft VC 940

Battery Runtime

The 355E7C achieved an idle runtime of 4:22 h. The Satellite (4:03 h) and Packard Bell's laptop (3:51 h) lag slightly behind that. The idle runtime is ascertained using Battery Eater's Reader's test. The screen's brightness is set to minimum, the energy-saving mode is enabled and the wireless modules are off. Samsung's laptop finished the load test after 1:11 h and is on a par with the Satellite (1:12 h). Packard Bell's laptop lasts a bit longer with 1:41 h. We use Battery Eater's Classic test to determine the load runtime. The screen is set to maximum brightness and the high-performance profile and the wireless modules are enabled.

The Wi-Fi test ran for 2:35 h on the 355E7C. Both contenders (Toshiba: 3:31 h; Packard Bell: 3:06 h) last longer. Websites are automatically opened every 40 seconds in this test. The energy-savings profile is enabled and the screen's brightness is set to approximately 150 cd/m². Should the user want to use Samsung's laptop as a DVD player, it is recommendable to have the power supply at hand. One battery charge is enough for a playback time of 2:13 h. The Satellite (2:07 h) is on a par with the 355E7C and Packard Bell's laptop lasts a bit longer with 2:33 h. The DVD test is performed in enabled energy saving mode (or a higher profile should the DVD not run smoothly), maximum screen brightness and disabled wireless modules.

The batteries of the three laptops have an identical capacity of 48 Wh each.

Battery Runtime
Idle (without WLAN, min brightness)
4h 22min
WiFi Surfing
2h 35min
DVD
2h 13min
Load (maximum brightness)
1h 11min

Verdict

Samsung Series 3 355E7C-S05DE
Samsung Series 3 355E7C-S05DE

Samsung sees the 355E7C as a family laptop. We can quite agree with this self-assessment. The laptop convinces with decent application performance and good equipment (high storage capacity, 8 GB of working memory). Even the gaming performance is satisfactory and enables playing most up-to-date computer games. It also pleases with a matte screen and good keyboard. Thus, the laptop can cover many different application fields. On the con side, we have the screen's moderate contrast and the poor battery runtimes. These points can be tolerated in a 17.3-inch multimedia laptop. Samsung offers potential for saving: Users who are satisfied with a dual-core processor, less working memory and hard drive capacity can attain the 355E7C for less than 500 Euros (~$647).

Although Toshiba's Satellite L875D-10E features a very similar configuration, there are differences that make it interesting. That would be the three year warranty and the higher contrast screen. Packard Bell's EasyNote LV44HC-137GE would cater to users looking for an as silent-running laptop as possible and/or a laptop with a higher contrast screen.

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In Review: Samsung Series 3 355E7C-S05DE

Specifications

Samsung Serie 3 355E7C-S05DE
Processor
AMD A8-4500M 1.9 GHz
Graphics adapter
AMD Radeon HD 7640G + HD 7670M Dual Graphics - 2048 MB, Core: 335-655 MHz, Memory: 800 MHz, 8.982.10.5000, Crossfire
Memory
8192 MB 
, DDR3, dual-channel
Display
17.3 inch 16:9, 1600x900 pixel, AU Optronics B173RW01 V4, TN LED, glossy: no
Mainboard
AMD A70M
Harddisk
Hitachi Travelstar 5K750 HTS547575A9E384, 750 GB 
5400 rpm
Soundcard
AMD Hudson-2 High Definition Audio Controller
Connections
2 USB 2.0, 2 USB 3.0, 1 VGA, 1 HDMI, 1 Kensington Lock, Audio Connections: headphone-out, microphone-in, Card Reader: SD, SDHC, SDXC, MMC,
Networking
Realtek RTL8168/8111 Gigabit-LAN (10/100/1000MBit), Atheros AR9485WB-EG Wireless Network Adapter (b g n ), 4.0 Bluetooth
Optical drive
TSSTcorp CDDVDW SN-208BB
Size
height x width x depth (in mm): 35.2 x 411.3 x 270.15 ( = 1.39 x 16.19 x 10.64 in)
Weight
2.8 kg ( = 98.77 oz) Power Supply: 340 g ( = 11.99 oz)
Battery
48 Wh Lithium-Ion, 11.1 V, 4400 mAh
Price
899 Euro
Operating System
Microsoft Windows 8 64 Bit
Additional features
Webcam: 1.3 Megapixel, Speakers: stereo, Keyboard: chiclet, Keyboard Light: no, Cyberlink Power2Go 8, Cyberlink PowerDVD 10, Norton Internet Security (60 day trial), Microsoft Office 10 (trial), Windows Essential 2012, 24 Months Warranty

 

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A number pad is installed.
A number pad is installed.
Samsung includes various preinstalled apps.
Samsung includes various preinstalled apps.
The keys feature a medium drop.
The keys feature a medium drop.
AMD technology works inside.
AMD technology works inside.
The speakers are located above the keyboard.
The speakers are located above the keyboard.
Samsung's laptop outdoors.
Samsung's laptop outdoors.
and provides a maximum of 90 watts.
and provides a maximum of 90 watts.
The PSU weighs just below 340 grams...
The PSU weighs just below 340 grams...
and supplies a capacity of 48 Wh.
and supplies a capacity of 48 Wh.
The battery weighs 291 grams...
The battery weighs 291 grams...
Good: Two Wi-Fi antennas are available.
Good: Two Wi-Fi antennas are available.
The hard drive can be pulled out easily.
The hard drive can be pulled out easily.
The 355E7C sports two working memory banks.
The 355E7C sports two working memory banks.
Opened maintenance covers.
Opened maintenance covers.
The illuminated power button adds a colored highlight.
The illuminated power button adds a colored highlight.
The hinges keep the lid firmly in position.
The hinges keep the lid firmly in position.
The DVD drive reads and writes all kinds of DVDs and CDs.
The DVD drive reads and writes all kinds of DVDs and CDs.
Silent Mode can be enabled here.
Silent Mode can be enabled here.

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Links

  • Manufacturer's information

Compare Prices

Amazon.com

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Pricerunner n.a.

Pro

+Matte screen
+High storage capacity
+8 GB of working memory
+Acceptable gaming performance
+Good keyboard
 

Cons

-Short battery runtimes
-Low contrast screen

Shortcut

What we like

The screen's matte surface and the decent keyboard.

What we'd like to see

A screen with a higher contrast.

What surprises us

The throttling observed in the stress test could be managed by a somewhat more active fan.

The competition

Toshiba Satellite L875D-10E, Packard Bell EasyNote LV44HC-137GE, Sony Vaio SV-E1712F1EW, Samsung Series 3 300E7A-S09DE, Asus K75VJ-TY102H, HP ProBook 4740s, Lenovo IdeaPad G780, Samsung Series 3 305E7A-S03DE, HP Pavilion g7-2007sg.

Rating

Samsung Serie 3 355E7C-S05DE
02/28/2013 v3
Sascha Mölck

Chassis
78%
Keyboard
82%
Pointing Device
82%
Connectivity
69%
Weight
76%
Battery
74%
Display
78%
Games Performance
79%
Application Performance
88%
Temperature
84%
Noise
88%
Add Points
80%
Average
80%
80%
Multimedia *
Weighted Average
> Notebook / Laptop Reviews and News > Reviews > Archive of our own reviews > Review Samsung Series 3 355E7C-S05DE Notebook
Author: Sascha Mölck, 2013-03-19 (Update: 2013-06- 6)