Samsung Series 5 550P Laptop with a Big Screen for a Big Multimedia Experience

Laptops by their very nature are meant to be portable, you can just close the lid and walk away with it, stick it in your backpack or laptop case and be able to take it with you. The current trend with ultrabooks, MacBooks, Netbooks etc. is to go small and lean, everything needs to be as thin as possible and look so good. Sometimes though we want something with a big screen. Sure, a 13-inch screen is good and fully usable for most things, but sometimes we could do with a full 17-inch variety so we can do things such as play games, edit videos and have plenty of space on the screen. The Samsung Series 5 550P is one of these laptops that look to offer that space, as well as give a nice powerful spec to show off how powerful a laptop can be.

Of course Samsung are not the only company who offer big 17-inch screens, both HP and Dell know that there are users who want to go this big so there is obvious competition. Do Samsung have what it takes to take on the likes of the Del XPS 17 and HP Envy 17? Or will it get lost in the competition?

Features
Along with the 17.3-inch screen the Samsung series 5 550P has a powerful punch. With the Intel Core i7 processor providing the power and 1TB hard disk to provide the storage this laptop should be able to be able to handle whatever you throw at it. One thing of note is the built in Blu-ray drive, and at a time when some companies are removing optical drives to opt for a “thin” design this is a nice touch, especially when it means the ability to watch HD movies off disks. Also of note are the JBL speakers which are above standard quality for laptop speakers which normally do tend to lack the audio power.

Screen
Strangely for a big screen like this it can’t actually manage full HD (1080p) but it’s still high quality and you will still be able to get your movies at 720p at least. The resolution for the screen is 1,600 x 900 and appears to have no issues with glare in sunlight due to its matte finish. The screen is big, looks good and gives you space, not much more you need from it really.

Performance
As mentioned before this is an Intel Core i7 processor (i7-3610QM) with 8GB of ram to back it up. The graphics capability is Nvidia GeForce GT650M which is a dedicated graphics card, this means that games should have no issues at all running on this (the graphics also has 2GB of its own ram to work with). With all the power inside the laptop you should be able to do anything you want on it without any real issues. In fact it’s quite a powerhouse. Not the best on the market of course, but it should meet your needs.

Verdict
The Samsung Series 5 550P is a robust and strong contender in the world of the larger laptop. It’s not as mobile as some and not the sexiest looking computer around but it gets the job done. With the built in Blu-ray drive, i7 power and plenty of ram for both graphics and applications it should be able to do everything you ask from it. It’s a shame it can’t manage 1080p but this is not a major issue, some users may have issues with the battery life though which can be only a few hours. It’s arguable though that this is the style of laptop that although portable won’t probably be that far away from a power outlet when needed so battery recharging may not really be that much of an issue, especially for power users.