Samsung is a leader in the world of electronics but until 2012 they had yet to make their stamp on the PC gaming marketplace. That all changed back at CES with the announcement of a robust PC notebook line aimed specifically at gamers. We caught up with Samsung and discussed their laptop line and what makes them different than the competition.
GI: Sean Gibson of Gaming Illustrated here with Samsung. I’m with Andrew Smolinski, great hockey name by the way…
AS: Brian Smolinski (a former NHL player), I know. Thank you very much.
GI: So we’re here checking out the laptop line. These gaming notebooks, I’ll be honest with you as a gamer and an editor of a gaming magazine, I had no idea that the quality was this high with Samsung. I’m rambling on a little bit here because I’m a huge Samsung fan so I’m excited that you’re in this space.
AS: Absolutely. One of the really unique things about Samsung computers in general is that up to 75% of the components are Samsung-made components. So we’re able to build these from the ground up using Samsung parts and it makes them extremely reliable.
GI: I have got a Samsung 1080p LED TV and so the first thing I’m going to look at with a Samsung laptop and notebook is the screen quality. Talk about that, please.
AS: The screen quality on this unit, the 17.3” Gamer – it’s a full HD 1080p screen and it’s 400 Nits of brightness so it’s extremely bright. You can take this thing outside in the sun and still game on it perfectly fine – you’ll still be able to see your screen.
GI: And it looks like it supports 3D?
AS: We do have a version that will support 3D. It’s TVD as of course all of this stuff is, whether it’s actually going to hit market or not because everything’s likely to change. But as of right now we do have a 3D option, yes.
GI: So looking at the design – gorgeous. This isn’t necessarily your MacBook Air if you will. This is for me, the hardcore gamer who wants a nice marriage between a portable desktop but something that is portable at the same time.
AS: Absolutely. This is designed to be able to handle the most demanding games; like any PC game you can throw at it, it’s able to play it seamlessly. And we want to give people that option to be able to take it with them, because obviously that’s not an option with a desktop.
GI: I’m seeing some pretty heavy specs here: Intel Core i7, ATI Radeon A69, 72 GB of RAM on there. This is not your dad’s laptop, is it?
AS: Not at all, and it supports up to 16 GB of DRAM as well. It has a full 2.1 sound system so you’ve got stereo speakers plus a subwoofer and you’ve got a three-color backlit keyboard, so the gaming keys are actually light up red while the rest of it’s blue. So it’s really jam-packed with features.
GI: Samsung quality to me is second to none – that’s why people are so brand loyal. You talked about the need for similar components. You know, a lot of this stays at home with Samsung. How important should it be for people looking at a laptop?
AS: I think it should be extremely important because since we don’t outsource a ton of components we’re able to rigorously test these products in Samsung factories by Samsung employees. So we’re really in control of the manufacturing process from the ground up. So the benefit of that is you get a top quality product and it’s going to be extremely reliable. And not only are we able to use Samsung components but they’re some of the best components available. We’re the number one DRAM manufacturer and we have been for the past 20 years. We’re the number one flash memory manufacturer and we have been for the last ten years. LCD screens, battery technology – all that stuff is really, really top quality.
GI: And here’s an extra feature here I’m seeing for the first time.
AS: We also have a mode toggle switch which allows you to change modes. There’s a gaming mode which will actually increase the fan speed and kick some turbo into your processor, but the fan’s going to increase just so there’s a lot more cooling so the PC’s not going to get hot. Then there’s a balance mode which is just for everyday PC use; a library mode which actually quiets the fan down and turns down your volume, all of that; and then also a green mode which will dim the screen and preserve your battery.
The really cool thing about the gaming mode is that when you turn that on, that’s when you get the three-color backlit keys and it also disables your touchpad and any Windows keys at the same time.
GI: No distribution news yet?
AS: No, unfortunately not. I don’t have any distribution news. Definitely e-tailers but I don’t have any retail assortment yet.
GI: What’s the message you want to give them with these notebooks specifically designed for gamers? Oh, and let us know what you won back at CES.
AS: Oh, we won Best in Show, the Best Laptop in the entire CES Show with the Series 7 Gamer. So we’re really excited about it. It’s a new product for us. It’s jam-packed with features and any gamer out there should definitely check it out.
GI: Alright, Andrew Smolinski. Thank you so much for joining us here at Gaming Illustrated.
AS: You’re welcome. Thanks for having me.