Samsung’s Series 5 Ultra is the first generation of Samsung laptop to get an integrated 13.3″ touch screen optimized for Windows 8. The design language and overall build quality of this Series 5 Ultra reminds us of the 15″ Series 9. The body is made of aluminum, and the design is slick and very rigid. It’s not as thin as the Series 9, but it is in a different price range as well: $799 to $849.
The touch screen of this laptop reacts and behaves exactly like a tablet would – no surprise there. It supports up to 10-points of contacts and when we played with it, Windows 8 was zippy fast – running at a solid 60 FPS.
At 3.83lbs, the Samsung Series 5 Ultra weighs much less than a 13.3″ Macbook Pro. Yet, we’ve been told that the touch screen adds a non-negligible weight to the system. This laptop comes with either an Intel Core i3, or a Core i5 processor and that explains the $799 to $849 price range. For $50, we recommend getting the Core i5.
Finally, we were surprised by the lack an SSD storage option (although the 500GB HDD has 24GB of SSD to help it), but this may be something that will be available at order-time. Very soon, we will know if touch screens add a lot to the user experience or not — what is your expectation? Will they make a big difference?