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Posted by on Aug 10, 2012 in Featured, Reviews |

Review: Samsung Series 7 Gamer

Samsung Series 7 Gamer [FW Labs]

Today, we face a special category. Because in a world where the trend is towards lighter and thinner formats in terms of laptops, there are certain kinds of products on the market is still alive: the notebook gamers. The Alienware brand, now owned by Dell, is one of the greatest exponents in the field and has had more economic success with other small companies targeting the same niche and enjoying moderate sales.

But now comes Samsung, one of the biggest industry players, entering the item in triumph with the Series 7 Gamer, seeking to emulate the top of the line features present in the competition and give gamers a taste, these users fans for games that require high performance teams general graph, which is associated with a high price according to the great benefit that has the machine. Will meet expectations?

Specs

  • Model: Samsung Series 7-S01CL 700G7A Gamer Notebook.
  • Availability and price: Latin America, $ 1,150,000 CLP (Chile)-USD $ 2,400 approximate.
  • Central processor (CPU): Core i7 2670QM. Four physical cores, supports eight processing threads thanks to HyperThreading technology, showing eight cores on Windows. It runs at 2.2GHz base, which scale to 3.1GHz when placed under load. 6MB of cache, TDP 45W, part of the second generation of Core processors Sandy Bridge, made under a 32nm process.
  • Graphics (GPU): Radeon HD6970M with 2GB of dedicated GDDR5 memory.
  • RAM: 8GB DDR3 1333MHz in two slots (2x4GB). There are four available slots.
  • Storage: Two 750GB hard drives each to have 1.5TB in total. Spin at 7,200 RPM, connected by SATA II (3Gbps). In addition, a small SSD 8GB (Express Cache).
  • Display: 17.3-inch diagonal with maximum resolution of 1920 x 1080 pixels and LED backlight. Supports 3D technology (including active glasses).
  • Connectivity: Ethernet, WiDi, Bluetooth 3.0, VGA port, HDMI, DisplayPort, two USB 2.0, two USB 3.0 Card Reader 7 in 1, audio output and input.
  • Battery: Eight-cell (89Wh) and Charger 200W.
  • Dimensions and Weight: 5cm thick, 41cm wide and 27cm deep. 3.5 kg.
  • Other: Webcam 2Mpx, hole for Kensington security lock, integrated sound stereo plus subwoofer, multicolor backlit keyboard, wheel to set the energy profile and performance. Reader Optical Drive Blu-Ray.
  • Software: Windows 7 home premium, Adobe Acrobat Reader, Microsoft Office 2010 Starter, Windows Live, Skype, CyberLink Media Suite, Cyberlink YouCam software from Samsung.

Design and Display

Samsung Series 7 Gamer [FW Labs] image 2

One of the most striking things about being in front of the computer is its huge dimensions. Because by integrating large numbers of technical performance, the space required for that is large, we must consider that there are high-performance chips that generate enough heat, which must be dissipated with a generous cooling system.

This also adds a weight of 3.5 Kg, which together with the size, make the something that can not be transported on the back for long hours daily. Is it wrong all this? Of course not, because it is designed the model, not a laptop but as a replacement desktop, offering almost the same as him, but with the possibility of transporting it from time to time for certain major events such as gaming competitions .

The potential customer should be clear about this and not believe that it’s wrong, because all the teams in the category are of the same physical characteristics, whatever the brand, because as we said earlier, this is a specific niche know that.

Samsung Series 7 Gamer [FW Labs] image 3

With this in mind, we must evaluate the quality of manufacture, in this case is excellent. And you can not ask less for the price, so you have to look at the details. For example, we see that the structure is quite firm, offering great confidence when maneuvering the body, not where it could break or show weakness. In this there is a cover on the keyboard looks like brushed aluminum, with the presence of high quality plastic in the rest of the team.

Some appreciate the external design that provides Samsung with soft textures, patterns, attractive design and a fairly bright outer shell and an ornament that delivers style without losing sobriety with the predominance of black. We emphasize that because there are other brands that choose bright colors or excessive ornamentation, and maybe some enjoy that, along with the presence of colored lights everywhere. We believe that Samsung found the right balance: without stunning color, added enough lights and decorations that indicate being in front of a machine gamer. The problem? Can not be customized, as in other offers.

Samsung Series 7 Gamer [FW Labs] image 4

Special mention deserves the right side wheel that controls the energy profile of the Gamer Series 7, in four positions which delivers the ability to enter power saving modes, saving moderate, balanced and high performance. In this top panel we see the power button, decorative lighting and haptic buttons to control volume and certain system parameters manually.

Particularly striking is the “transformation” that plagues the laptop when we took the wheel to the position of high performance, changing the background screen and keyboard backlight with paraphernalia that includes sounds and animations in between, something that can be seen in the video with the preview that we presented earlier , where we recorded the mutation of the Gamer Series 7, which we believe is unnecessary and sometimes rather annoying because of the loud sound that is emitted.

Samsung Series 7 Gamer [FW Labs] image 5

When should we have a team that specialize in video games, the screen is a key aspect, as well as good graphics performance, it should be according to this panel to be able to enjoy the offerings. This explains the 17.3-inch with high resolution of 1920 x 1080 pixels, which is known commercially as “Full HD”.

Quality stands, and the change from conventional displays of 1366 x 768 pixels is evident. Despite this, Samsung falls back into sin that they have almost all manufacturers: excess shine and reflection of light, something that we are so accustomed that we no longer know how to say it stronger so that at least the manufacturers include to opt for matte panels.

Aside from that, the angles of visibility are spacious and the color does not distort too much when viewed from different positions, which accommodates possible viewers of what we are playing at the moment. And last but not least, support for 3D technology.

3D

Samsung Series 7 Gamer [FW Labs] image 6

The idea for the is to have everything under one package, and in this, the 3D is one of the latest technologies popular in the market did not want to miss. To enjoy what we are in the desktop operating system a small application called TriDef 3D Ignition, which manages and directs the contents come from originally trained to be displayed in 3D, shown on the screen with support for frame rates 120Hz and consumed by the user through active lenses that are included with the product, and charge its battery through a USB cable.

As 3D TriDef Ignition, the program is able to show quite friendly photos, videos and games suitable for 3D. Here the most interesting is the recognition that makes video games you have installed on your PC, taking the task of recognizing what technology support, displaying them on a list after access to the “Play Games 3D”:

Samsung Series 7 Gamer [FW Labs] image 7Samsung Series 7 Gamer [FW Labs] image 8

In our experience, we had no problems running Far Cry 2 title in 3D, with good gameplay and rewarding experience during the first minutes, but later the eye and becomes a little uncomfortable and that depends on each person and their “resistance “to 3D. In our case, we of dizzy quickly when we see something in 3D …

Moreover, the active lens allows us to move as the head side to side to demand viewing angles, do not miss the 3D perspective and indeed, it appears that the atmosphere moves with us. Thus, from different positions can see well, not necessarily just in front of the screen so right and perfect, but if we rotate the neck and bowed our heads in the same position to the side, the colors are distorted toward the blue and yellow an almost curious.

However, the visibility is amazing and no trouble recognizing the game and deploy it quickly and easily in 3D, an aspect that is certainly a very interesting ornament to show friends and family, and for convenience, is fairly easy to access.

Keyboard and trackpad

Samsung Series 7 Gamer [FW Labs] image 9

Samsung claims to be very important in this notebook the presence of a backlit keyboard that being “transformed” as a gamer, blue shade into red highlighted WASD keys are necessary when handling most FPS games ( First Person Shooter), such as Counter Strike and Far Cry 2. Despite this, other competing models are better ways to customize, as the option to choose a color for the lighting equipment is very common in this category and price, which is strange in this Samsung.

Aside from that, we have nothing unusual: Plastic, size keys and embedded numeric keypad, which is a standard 17.3-inch computers.

Samsung Series 7 Gamer [FW Labs] image 10

The trackpad is something that surely will be used very little during gaming sessions and daily activity, since the latter is a model designed as a replacement to your desktop PC, use an external mouse is almost mandatory, especially in video games. Anyway, Samsung chose a material without glass, with a good texture and precision, with two buttons left and right click classic, adorned with a strip that glows blue. In addition, support for multitouch gestures, easy to set up with ELAN software drivers, although a small area to run.

Samsung Series 7 Gamer [FW Labs] image 11

User experience and software

Samsung Series 7 Gamer [FW Labs] image 12

Healthy, we find little of factory preinstalled software, which added a hybrid mass storage 8GB solid state drive (SSD) for the cache of the data used most often (such as the Windows operating system), allow reduced access times, quick response to the opening of programs and a power that is achieved in approximately 27 seconds, shutting down the machine complements in 22 sec.

Samsung manages energy profiles and performance through the physical wheel already mentioned, although more features are offered through drivers developed for them. In this, we find a small button-shaped “eye”, which is in the upper right corner of the screen that when pressed, opens a window to configure basic “game mode”, which include minor changes , where we expected more customization options.

Samsung Series 7 Gamer [FW Labs] image 13

Image courtesy of Department of Style and Interaction Design.

So in terms of software, we just and necessary utilities. Now, when you require the equipment and operate the most to him, the cooling system responds as expected and temperatures reach uncomfortable for the hands, and although neither does the bottom where the laptop rests on legs due to their size rather doubt it is desirable to do something with the machine in this position.

Samsung Series 7 Gamer [FW Labs] image 14

Performance

We said we can not criticize the large size and weight of the equipment, because it is intended to bring the best possible technical performance, and that is why we enter what is perhaps the most important part of this review. Finding points of reference in terms of performance to compare the Gamer Series 7 is difficult because this type of equipment are difficult to find, but our approximations for us to look to the side of the Samsung Series 7 Chronos , Sony VAIO C Series , 3D VPCF215FL Sony VAIO and HP Pavilion DV6-6185LA , who bring some hardware feature of a good standard, however, do not approach you offer this model, which is of another category.

The Intel Core i7 2670QM 3.1GHz quad-core and even more, AMD Radeon graphics HD6970M, one of the fastest notebook GPUs on the planet, are almost unattainable. To this we add two 750GB hard drives, generous 8GB of RAM and a small solid state drive (SSD) 8GB to store frequently used data, speeding up certain activities and more showing-hiding-in as part the hard disk.

The test suite of Windows 7 will give the first indications for the operation of these components, giving them a score independently ranging from 1.0 to 7.9 up:

Samsung Series 7 Gamer [FW Labs] image 15

We obtained almost the maximum in every area, except in terms of storage, where the use of hard disks and an SSD so small affect the score, which anyway is not that bad.

But more important is to pay attention to what gives us PCMark 7, which requires the machine as a whole and allows us to have on hand figures for performance playback and video encoding quality, speed to surf the Internet and processing power when editing large images:

Futuremark PCMark7 Video playback and encoding (Frames per second) Processing web pages (pages per second) Image manipulation (Mpx per second) General
Lenovo U300s 23.1 8.19 6.39 3117
Sony VAIO Series E14P 23.04 12.44 9.14 2287
Lenovo U310 23.04 10.3 8.24 3451
HP Pavilion m6-1076la 22.97 10.88 11.47 2005
HP Folio 13 23.1 8.32 6.5 3170
Samsung Series 7 Gamer 23.04 14.99 9.51 3456

Lament the lack of a higher capacity SSD is carried entire load of the user experience, which could be possible by the presence of two slots for hard disks. Instead, the 8GB SSD are hardly taken into account and thus suffer from a bottleneck that affected the overall score of the platform. And this model is not intended to provide flow priority daily, but in specific tasks.

Cinebench R10 We shall then see if the central processor responds to the high expectations, in each core alone (Single CPU) and the four working together (Multi CPU), along with a preview of graphics performance (OpenGL.)

Cinebench R10
Single CPU
Multi CPU
OpenGL
Alienware M11x 1643 2979 2886
Acer Aspire Timeline Ultra M3-581TG 3352 7000 4449
Toshiba Portege Z835 3611 7190 4620
SONY VAIO 3D VPCF215FL 4529 17121 3859
Sony VAIO VPCCA17FL 4621 9768 4793
Sony VAIO Z 4573 9819 2058
Samsung R480 2362 5494 2924
Samsung 530U 3513 6195 3743
Samsung R580 2795 6268 3350
Samsung Series 7 Chronos 4688 14070 5607
HP Pavilion dm1z 1149 2210 1937
HP Pavilion dm4 3081 6852 2036
HP ENVY 14 Spectre 3622 7211 4677
HP Pavilion DV6-6185LA 4582 16983 5490
Lenovo U300s 3544 7137 3724
Sony VAIO Series E14P 4910 10376 6980
Lenovo U310 4378 9085 4049
HP Folio 13 3626 7294 4481
Samsung Series 7 Gamer 4810 18051 8643

Of the best scores we have achieved, with a splendid result in muti-task thanks to quad-core CPU can process eight threads simultaneously thanks to the Intel HyperThreading technology, an area where the chip shines specific tasks rather than a core where to Single CPU 4810 include both. The graphics are a show apart, with an absolute beating the entire table.

And go into detail about it with 3DMark 06, requiring the specific GPU:

Futuremark 3DMark 2006
SM 2.0
SM 3.0
CPU
TOTAL
Alienware M11x 3016 3160 1400 6539
Acer Aspire Timeline Ultra M3-581TG 4800 5267 2440 10854
Toshiba Portege Z835 1422 1690 2440 4114
SONY VAIO 3D VPCF215FL 2462 3063 3231 7060
Sony VAIO VPCCA17FL 2473 3074 3129 7054
Sony VAIO Z 1598 1975 3199 4761
Samsung R480 3183 3167 2216 7547
Samsung 530U 1170 1461 1931 3454
Samsung R580 3178 3273 2498 7726
Samsung Series 7 Chronos 2978 3266 3454 7946
HP Pavilion dm1z 762 968 1023 2213
HP Pavilion dm4 655 856 2763 2120
HP ENVY 14 Spectre 1187 1468 2000 3498
HP Pavilion DV6-6185LA 4063 5341 5048 11877
Lenovo U300s 1186 1408 2412 3484
Sony VAIO Series E14P 2030 2512 3405 5976
Lenovo U310 1196 1634 2958 3838
HP Pavilion m6-1076la 2851 3418 2815 7692
HP Folio 13 1195 1414 2023 3444
Samsung Series 7 Gamer 7559 8195 5451 18461

There is no doubt of the ability of AMD graphics, stop online solution for laptops is the most powerful on the market, and amply demonstrates right now. We speak of a GPU that is on par with a dedicated video card for desktop PCs, but condensed into a smaller package that is almost portable, high heat dissipation but solvable, and high energy consumption for a notebook, which damage the battery and charger requires a very large, as discussed below. What change? The best score in 3DMark 06 and performance in games is unbelievable, also something that will get into in a moment more.

Finally, close the test run with CrystalDiskMark 3, which will tell us information about the performance of the two hard drives that come with the Series 7 Gamer, in terms of speed of data transfer:

Samsung Series 7 Gamer [FW Labs] image 16

We got very consistent data to a hard disk, and in fact, quite positive, with reading and 105MB/seg 114MB/seg in writing about 20MB/sec above average hard drives. It was noted the presence of the 8GB SSD, the ones built in mysterious in such a way that the OS will not see it.

Despite this, and as already mentioned, we are missing a larger capacity SSD in the second storage slot, which would have increased the price of equipment, but eliminating the bottleneck causing the hard drives, catching up the rest of These high performance, all art, except for this area.

Games

Samsung Series 7 Gamer [FW Labs] image 17

And let theory into practice, because we will see how we get great numbers before translate into outstanding graphics performance when running 3D games. In this, we tested two common titles: Starcraft II and Far Cry 2, could not resist and throw over to Samsung Series 7 Gamer a game of high demand, in fact, one of the two most aggressive today’s market: Metro 2033.

To begin, Starcraft II. We tested the five standard settings for graphics quality: Low, Medium, High, Ultra and Extreme, measuring the FPS (frames or frames per second) we get on average and its highest points and lowest, ie when the requirement of the game is less and there are few items on the screen, and when it is higher, as during an epic battle where you get the lowest SPF number, considering that 30 FPS is a number that allows a fluid game, no less than that.


Low Intermediate High Ultra End
Average FPS 157 93 84 66 65
Minimum FPS 46 35 31 26 25
Maximum FPS 374 211 244 131 132

Playable in any capacity, the computer responds to perfection even as Extreme, with a small pull 25 FPS that really happens in a scene-heavy elements and explosions, which anyway does not affect the overall experience, because it does not reaches even a figure to be red.

Now, Far Cry 2 and tool for performance measurement confirms this by running the software at a resolution of 1280 x 720, about DirectX 10 with anti-aliasing filter (4x) and best overall quality:


Average FPS Maximum FPS Minimum FPS
Lenovo U310 11 17 8
HP Pavilion m6-1076la 32 51 23
HP Folio 13 11 16 7
Samsung Series 7 Gamer 100 142 75

Samsung Series 7 Gamer [FW Labs] image 18

Overwhelming performance, demonstrating that we are facing a gamer machine and bred, as promised. What else can we do to confirm? Add a third set, this time one of the suspects in the top 3 most demanding of today. We’ll run the benchmark utility in Metro 2033 in two ways: one moderate effort and another with all the best, to see how the hardware responds.

First, we come to a resolution of 1280 x 720, DirectX 11 and high overall quality, not the maximum possible filters. Then throw all the meat on the grill, with resolution of 1920 x 1080, DirectX 11, all filters to the maximum and very high overall quality:


Intermediate Maximum
Average FPS 35 15
Minimum FPS 9 4
Maximum FPS 52 31

Almost almost. Metro 2033 was as hard as he could pull the team, which did not respond anyway so badly, but with strong jerks minimum FPS, where the scenes are slow and difficult to maintain a smoother gameplay. However, in broad terms the results are quite positive: this test we dare not even run on most computers, however, this got many green numbers.

Battery and charger

Samsung Series 7 Gamer [FW Labs] image 19

This almost makes no sense, because the Samsung Series 7 Gamer is not intended to be used independently of energy, since its high-performance hardware, such as might be expected, energy-intensive. And as with the appearance of large physical dimensions and weight, we can not criticize that, because this niche are like computers should be provided there is no other way of gathering both computing power in less space.

So, we got just 2 hours and 10 minutes on “The Test of YouTube”, where we started on Google Chrome a video on YouTube, the longest I could find at 240p on the player small, using the Windows power profile in “Balanced” and the screen brightness to 3/4 of its maximum capacity.

Another important aspect here is the size of the charger, certainly the largest we have had in our hands, which is explained by what we mentioned above, because the hardware requires an energy input of no less than 200W, when the average for notebooks is between 60W and 80W.

Conclusion

Samsung Series 7 Gamer [FW Labs] image 20

We are facing a different team, no doubt, where we shared weight, size and power consumption for maximum performance, delivering true portability for special occasions. So we should expect unmatched performance, we can say happily so, appears in the important moments, and the implementation of highly demanding 3D games.

It’s a gamer machine, no doubt, and run everything you put up, except Crysis and Metro 2033 in their high quality, these being the two most demanding market securities, including desktop PCs of high value. Able to say that as much, so great merits in terms of performance for this model.

But the Gamer Series 7 is not without company in this niche market of computers extreme, and if anything is missing from Samsung to match the rest, are the aesthetic customization options. It may seem trivial, but companies like ASUS and Alienware have been quite bold about it and invest in that, with shapes, colors, lights and keyboards rather special.

However, in terms of performance is everything you need, with chips and a performance art that is worth its price.

The Unmissable

  • Screen quality, resolution and 3D technology.
  • Performance off the charts, meeting expectations.
  • Great build quality body.

The unpresentable

  • Lack of options to customize the keyboard backlight.
  • Instead of two hard drives, missed the presence of a higher capacity SSD.

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