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Samsung 200B5A review

A virtually indestructible business laptop

Product features

  • Screen Resolution : 1366 x 768
  • Processor Core : Dual-core (2 Core)

View full specification

For

  • Great screen
  • Sturdy build quality
  • Decent office performance

Against

  • Poor graphics performance
  • Portability
  • Average storage capacity

Samsung has a great reputation for top-quality machines at great prices. The 200B5A adds to the list and is a usable and powerful business laptop let down only slightly by limited graphics.

While the staid, black chassis won't win any awards for design, it provides a neutral look to suit all tastes. The hard-wearing plastics and firm panels provide a sturdy feel and the whole machine feels extremely well put together.

The thick screen panel is also extremely firm and Samsung claims it will withstand up to 500kg of pressure. As with all but the Alienware M11x, this is not a laptop built with portability in mind. At 2.5kg it is quite a heavy machine and you won't want to use it as your main laptop if you travel a lot. This is backed up by a 136-minute battery life that provides only basic mobility.

The excellent user interface is a pleasure to work with and this is a great machine to use for extended periods. While the spill-resistant keyboard shuns the use of an isolated design, the firm keys, comfortable typing action and smooth movement ensure the board is quiet, accurate and responsive.

The touchpad is slightly less reactive and feels sluggish at first. Once you increase the pointer speed in Windows 7, though, it feels a bit sharper. The mouse buttons, on the other hand, are excellent. They are easy to access when working at speed and respond well, no matter how hard or soft you press them.

Another strength is the Samsung's great screen. The 15.6-inch panel uses a glossy coating to improve colour and contrast, but it is the least reflective example we've seen. Whether working in direct sunlight or under harsh lighting, you can always see the screen clearly, with images rendered sharply and brightly.

Capable performance

The Samsung's Intel Celeron P4600 processor means that it is outperformed by its Intel Core-powered rivals, but the difference is not as vast as expected. At no time did we see any notable slowdown and the Samsung runs quickly and efficiently at all times.

Graphics performance is where things fall down slightly. While not nearly as limited as the Toshiba Satellite Pro C660-1UX, the integrated Intel graphics card is very underpowered and won't suit gaming or media editing. There is enough power for enjoying your photos and videos, however, which is sure to suit most people's needs.

TechRadar Labs

tech labs

Battery Eater '05: 136 minutes
Cinebench: 5209
3DMark 2006: 1237

Samsung 200b5a

In terms of storage, the Samsung is capable, if unexceptional. The 320GB hard drive will hold large collections of music, photos and videos, but is bettered by the Acer Aspire 5943G, Advent Monza E1 and Lenovo B570. Most users will be more than satisfied with the storage on offer, though, and the anti-shock drive protects against damage if the laptop is dropped.

You can also back up your files to DVD and CD using the built-in DVD rewriter, making it easy to create movie, music and photo discs. A seven-in-one card reader is also in place and offers broad media card compatibility, letting you share files with a wide range of the most popular multimedia card formats.

While the B200B5A is not the most stylish or powerful laptop, its resilience, great screen visibility and strong usability make it an easy laptop to like. If you need a tough and capable machine that will stand up to years of demanding daily use, then this is certainly a great choice.

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Tech Specs

Product TypeNotebook
Green CompliantYes
Hard Drive Capacity320 GB
Processor ManufacturerIntel
Graphics Controller ManufacturerIntel
Graphics Controller ModelHD Graphics
BluetoothYes
Wireless LANYes
Optical Drive TypeDVD-Writer
Graphics Memory AccessibilityShared
HDMIYes
WebcamYes
Backlight TechnologyLED
eSATA/USB ComboYes
Product Family2
Operating System Architecture64-bit
Processor ModelP4600
Operating SystemWindows 7 Professional
Brand NameSamsung
Processor Speed2 GHz
Processor TypeCeleron
Screen Size39.6 cm (15.6")
Number of Cells6-cell
Screen Resolution1366 x 768
Standard Memory2 GB
Weight (Approximate)2.50 kg
Cache2 MB
Processor CoreDual-core (2 Core)
Green Compliance Certificate/AuthorityENERGY STAR
64-bit ProcessingYes
Chipset ManufacturerIntel
Chipset ModelHM55 Express
Number of Total Memory Slots2
Optical Media SupportedDVD-RAM/±R/±RW
Dual-Layer Media SupportedYes
Display Screen TypeActive Matrix TFT Colour LCD
Display Screen TechnologySuperBright
Wireless LAN StandardIEEE 802.11b/g/n
Bluetooth StandardBluetooth 3.0
Ethernet TechnologyGigabit Ethernet
Total Number of USB Ports4
Height35.3 mm
Width370 mm
Depth248.3 mm
Screen ModeWXGA
Memory TechnologyDDR3 SDRAM
Product Series2
ManufacturerSamsung
Product Model200B5A
Product Name200B5A Notebook
Pointing Device TypeTouchPad
Aspect Ratio16:9
Manufacturer Part NumberNP200B5A-A01UK
Manufacturer Website Addresshttp://www.samsung.com/uk/
Marketing Information

Designed for businesses that demand long-lasting value, the Samsung Series 2 notebook delivers superior reliability, security and power - at an affordable price. Its rugged, anti-shock Duracase Pro chassis is a safe haven for the very latest high performance technology - including an Intel Core i5/i3 processor and Windows 7 Professional. It also incorporates an anti-reflective screen that's up to 40% brighter than conventional displays, so it's much easier to use for longer - even outdoors - without your eyes getting tired. Plus Samsung's intelligent PowerPlus battery charging technology ensures that the battery retains 80% of its capacity for 3 times longer than a typical battery, making it more economical and environmentally friendly. And to optimize productivity there's a range of ergonomic features, like a responsive keyboard that's as comfortable as a desktop keyboard and a much larger touchpad with easy to use buttons. So for enduring reliability, performance and value the Samsung Series 2 notebook really is the business.

Package Contents
  • 200B5A Notebook
  • Standard Battery
  • AC Adapter
  • Operating System Installation DVD
Limited Warranty1 Year