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(Pocket-lint) - Officially speaking, the Samsung Series 9 laptop is not an Ultrabook - at least, Samsung has chosen not to call it one much like Apple hasn't bothered including the MacBook Air either. Instead, Samsung announced a couple of lesser machines at CES 2012, so Pocket-lint went hands-on to see if they're still impressive enough.

The kindest way to describe the Samsung Series 5 is by not comparing it to the Series 9. The Series 5 should not, ever, under any circumstances go double dating with the Series 9. It makes it look plump, dowdy and touch dull. It would sit ignored in the corner while all eyes were reserved for the other laptop.

Pocket-lintsamsung series 5 ultrabooks pictures and hands on image 8

Like we say, it's rather unfair because the Samsung Series 5 is something you'd otherwise feel proud carrying around on your arm. There are two models to choose from. There's the 13.3-inch version with integrated graphics or the 14-inch model with a dedicated GPU and an optical drive to enjoy as well. The price you pay for the latter is really in the body mass department which takes it up from 1.38kg to 1.84kg and that's pretty heavy for an Ultrabook. One has to wonder whether the disk drive is really worth it in this day and age?

Each has 8GB of RAM to play with and 300nit screens which are certainly perfectly good. Naturally, there are also Intel Core i5 processors at the helm and the choice of SSDs up to 16GB in size with the ExpressCache system to ensure fast starting and launching of apps, as we've seen on previous Samsung notebooks.

Neither laptop is wildly thin, despite the 14.9mm measurement at their thinnest, but they do have decent looking isolated keyboards and standard two-button trackpads which are easy enough to use, if slightly underwhelming.

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So, unfortunately, despite trying to avoid it, the only way to sum up the Samsung Series 5 is by saying that they're perfectly good but they're just not as exciting as the Series 9. You'd also have to look at what Acer and Lenovo offer in the Ultrabook space as well.

No word on prices just yet, but we'll update when we know. Placed at £800 or less and they could really kick up a storm. Cost any more and they might just get lost in the crowd.

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Writing by Dan Sung. Originally published on 16 April 2013.