Samsung 600B5B review

Reviews 15 Sep, 2011

Samsung isn't well known for its business laptops. Can the company's latest model, the 600B5B, convince businesses to turn away from their ThinkPads and ProBooks? Tom Morgan takes a look in our review.

3
Price: 
£658
ex VAT
Verdict: 
The Samsung 600B5B is fairly niche, even for a business laptop, but it's also one of the least expensive laptops with a business-certified graphics card. The 600B5B could be ideal for the user that needs 3D performance that can’t be provided by integrated chips. For most other people though, there are better all-rounders available.

The Samsung 600B5B seems rather chunky if you're used to far slimmer laptops, but its angular chassis is still surprisingly compact for a 15.6in laptop. It’s certainly not an ultra-portable at 2.5kg, but is still transportable. The main benefit to its size is its excellent connectivity; two USB3 ports, a single USB2 and one combined USB2/eSATA port are all welcome and useful inclusions, as is an ExpressCard/34 slot, multi-format card reader and internal DVD re-writer. There’s no modem port, so you’ll need a third party expansion card to add such a feature. Security-conscious users will appreciate the fingerprint reader.

The ports located on the right-hand side of the Samsung 600B5B.

Typing on the full-size QWERTY keyboard is best described as functional. Although we got used to typing on the keyboard after some practice, it wasn't easy - the keys have far too much travel and limited amount of tactile feedback. The numerical keypad is a welcome inclusion, although it has been reduced in size to fit the chassis we didn’t encounter any problems with data entry, so this shouldn’t be a problem for most people.

The keyboard on the Samsung 600B5B isn't especially comfortable to type on.

Like a lot of business-centric laptops, the 600B5B provides two options for controlling the Windows mouse cursor. The traditional touchpad felt responsive, with the rubberised finish creating only a tiny amount of friction, and the touchstick recessed into the keyboard was very firm. It seems unlikely it will come loose from regular use, unlike some touchsticks we’ve used in the past. Unfortunately, the touchstick's buttons were very springy, while the touchpad's buttons felt loose and had almost no tactile feedback. We had to press down very far before a click would register, which becomes annoying when web browsing or trying to drag files between folders.

Specifications: 

SPECIFICATIONS

Processor: Intel Core i5-2520M 2.5GHz

Memory: 4GB 1,333MHz DDR3 RAM

Graphics: Intel HD Graphics integrated / 512MB Nvidia NVS 4200M dedicated

Hard disk: 500GB HDD

Display: 15.6in 1,366x768, LED-backlit screen

Features: 1.3 megapixel webcam, microphone

Connectivity: 802.11b/g/n Wi-Fi, Bluetooth

Ports: 1 x USB2, 1 x eSATA (shared with USB2), 2 x USB3, 1 x 7-in-one card reader, 1 x VGA, 1 x HDMI, 1 x ExpressCard/34, 1x 3.5mm headphone output, 1x 3.5mm microphone input

Dimensions: 36x368x246mm (WxDxH)

Weight: 2.5kg

Warranty: 1 year collect and return warranty

OS: Windows 7 Professional 64-bit

Part code: NP600B5B-S01UK

BENCHMARK RESULTS

Image editing 71

Video encoding 50

Multiple apps 54

Overall 56

Light usage battery life – 7h 49m

POWER CONSUMPTION

Sleep 1W

Idle 14W

Active 58W