Notebooks Guide

Samsung ATIV Smart PC Pro review

Samsung ATIV Smart PC Pro - The Ultra Tablet

Compare This
Add to Wishlist
Launch SRP S$2199

Overall rating 8.5/10
Design:
7.5
Features:
9
Performance:
8.5
Value:
7.5
Mobility:
9
THE GOOD
Bright full HD display
Excellent battery life
Keyboard dock with comfortable chiclet keys
Samsung S-Pen Stylus with Wacom technology
THE BAD
Mostly plastic build
Clickpad's usability is below expectations
Heavy keyboard dock doesn't integrate battery
Clamshell form factor is heavy and bulky
Expensive


Battery Life and Portability Index

Battery Life and Portability Index

Ultrabooks are named as such because they are meant to be ultra portable notebooks. To have that trait, such notebooks need to have excellent battery life, handy form factor and is light to lug around. Since the Samsung ATIV Smart PC Pro is pretty much an Ultrabook, but with the ability to detach the keyboard, we're pretty much going to compare it against other equivalent Ultrabooks.

We used Powermark (by Futuremark) to test the battery lives of each machine. This benchmark puts the notebooks through a series of tasks that mimic daily usage, like web browsing and video playing, and records the amount of time it takes to drain the battery. To ensure consistency, the machines have their aeroplane modes turned off, with screen brightness and volume set to 50%, while undergoing the benchmark. 

Test Notebooks Compared

Specifications/
Notebook
Samsung Ativ Smart PC Pro Toshiba Satellite U920t Sony Vaio Duo 11 Dell XPS 12

Acer Aspire S7

Lenovo Ideapad Yoga
Processor Intel Core i5-3317U
(1.7GHz)
Intel Core i5-3317U
(1.7GHz)
Intel Core i5-3317U
(1.7GHz)
Intel Core i5-3317U
(1.7GHz)
Intel Core i5-3317U
(1.7GHz)
Intel Core i5-3317U
(1.7GHz)
Chipset Intel HM77 Intel HM77 Intel HM76 Intel QS77 Intel UM77 Intel QS77
Memory 4GB DDR3 4GB DDR3  4GB DDR3 4GB DDR3 4GB DDR3 4GB DDR3
Storage 128GB SSD 128GB SSD 128GB SSD 128GB SSD 128GB SSD 128GB SSD
Video Intel HD Graphics 4000 Intel HD Graphics 4000 Intel HD Graphics 4000 Intel HD Graphics 4000 Intel HD Graphics 4000 Intel HD Graphics 4000
Battery 49WHr 37.7WHr 36WHr 47WHr 35WHr 54.7WHr
Dimensions 304 x 189.4 x 11.89 / 22.34mm (with dock) 326.5 x 213 x 19.9mm 320 x 199 x 17.85mm 317 x 214 x 8-20mm 323 x 224 x 11.9mm 3329 x 223 x 16mm
Weight 0.89kg / 1.6kg with dock 1.45kg 1.305kg 1.54kg 1.3kg 1.46kg

 

As you can see from the ATIV Pro’s battery life results, without the dock, it managed to stay alive for 296 minutes! That’s just a couple of minutes shy of 5 hours and is easily one of the best scores we’ve ever come across for an Ultrabook. Its power consumption is also pretty low, despite its very sharp and not to mention bright full HD display which technically should have drained the machine of quite a bit of power.

However, perhaps thanks to a bit of clever power and performance management, the ATIV Pro sacrifices a little bit of performance (as seen from the previous page), for loads more battery life. This, in our opinion is one of the best compromises that Ultrabooks can make, since it allows the machine to be much more portable.

However, take note that with the dock attached, the battery performance of the ATIV Pro pegs closer to a true Ultrabook. It’s still a class leader, but the dock uses up quite a bit of juice, which is necessary for powering the 2 USB ports, keyboard, trackpad and status LEDs. Even so, we would have expected less impact from having the dock.


Portability Index 

Our portability index basically takes into consideration elements like battery life, volume and mass to come up with a ratio that tells you if it’s worth your while to carry a mobile product around compared to the competition. In this case, the odds are overwhelmingly in the ATIV Pro’s favor. Without the additional weight of the dock, it scores a very high 8.110.

However, please note that even though it has an extremely high score, it doesn’t mean that the Smart PC Pro is 4 times more portable than say a Dell XPS 12. What's important to note is how you interpret this index. Firstly, the portability index is only comparable within products of similar form factor and size. Any differences, and the figures will naturally go up or down accordingly. In this case, the ATIV Smart PC Pro should be compared along with other slate/tablet systems that are using a similar notebook processing platform and be of somewhat similar size.

At the moment, we don't have any really appropriate comparisons since a Windows RT based Microsoft Surface registers a ratio of a 24.89 as it's far lighter and has a much higher up-time, while a Windows RT based Lenovo Yoga 11 in its full notebook form registers a ratio of 7.92. As such, for a full fledged Windows 8 running device using a notebook processing platform, the Samsung ATIV Smart PC Pro fares really well with its 8.110 ratio without its keyboard dock.

Once you factor in the dock however, the ATIV Pro has a portability index that is much more in-line with that of a regular Ultrabook. This is because the combined weight of the unit with the dock comes up to 1.6kg and it has a rather chunky profile.  As such, even with its top battery life result, the mentioned characteristics pull its portability ratio figures that make it seem slightly worse than even notebooks of larger form factors, let alone those of a similar size like the Sony Vaio Duo 11.

What you should take away from the portability index is that the ATIV Pro's ability to ditch its power-sucking keyboard dock, plays a very big part in how portable the machine is. If you are going to mostly stick with the tablet form factor, but need the processing prowess of a full fledged notebook and run all sort of Windows based applications - new and old alike - the Samsung Smart PC Pro's hybrid form factor holds an advantage over the covertible Ultrabooks.