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53 of 53 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Pretty good for a sub $500 ultraportable..
Things to consider before buying:
-Matte screen: personal preference, for some it is a plus because it doesn't become a mirror during bright conditions. The bad side is it's not as bright as its glossy counterpart.
-Keyboard: chiclet type keys, again personal preference. I prefer the regular type of keyboard where there are no spaces in between but I can live...
Published on October 16, 2011 by so. california

versus
3.0 out of 5 stars terrible battery
The battery lasted for 6 months, and dead! I am not a student or business man, and this computer has been used on everyday to check email!
Published 22 months ago by Amazon Customer


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53 of 53 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Pretty good for a sub $500 ultraportable.., October 16, 2011
This review is from: Samsung NP300U1A-A01US Ultra Portable 11.6" Laptop (1.30 GHz Intel Core i3-2357M Processor, 4 GB RAM, 320 GB Hard Drive, Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit) (Personal Computers)
Things to consider before buying:
-Matte screen: personal preference, for some it is a plus because it doesn't become a mirror during bright conditions. The bad side is it's not as bright as its glossy counterpart.
-Keyboard: chiclet type keys, again personal preference. I prefer the regular type of keyboard where there are no spaces in between but I can live with it. Also, it lacks a dedicated "Page Up/Page Down, Home, End" keys. They are function keys instead and also, the multi-finger-touch-pad and its swipe features somewhat replaces these keys. I'm a keyboard type of guy though and it is annoying for me when I have to switch keyboard to touchpad constantly, more on this later...

Those are pretty much the cons of this laptop. Others may point out the tiny speakers but honestly, I've never heard of a sub 14" laptop produce good sound.. maybe loud and lots of treble but lacks the bass. This is super light, around 2+ lbs. and comes with lots of extras: hdmi, bt3.0, cat5, vga/sub, cam, mem card reader, 3 usb. I think that in itself is amazing at this weight and price (well I got mine on sale during the Staples deal of $349).

Build quality is good. Lots of plastic though but I guess thats to cut the weight and keep the cost down.

Pet peeve: after doing a lot of web surfing and multitasking, aka typing and moving the cursor around and clicking here and there.. the touchpad glitch (keyboard to touchpad delay) gets in the way; google it for more info. Basically if you use the keyboard, the touchpad is unresponsive until a short amount of time has passed (~2 seconds). The idea behind this is to prevent accidental touches on the pad (which I can assure does happen a lot on other laptops). But I think I'd rather live with accidental touches than the delay. A lot of people have the same issue so it's not just me. The touchpad uses the Elan Tech software (as of 10/16/2011) there is no fix for it that I know. I downloaded the latest driver/software from Samsung support website and all it did was change the default setting of the touchpad sensitivity to have the least noticeable amount of delay. While it reduced the delay, it is still there. I suppose I'll be using a mouse and disabling the touchpad to work around this issue or if Samsung or Elan Tech ever does an update.

The other thing is the miniscule battery included. I wouldn't mind the extra weight if it would give me 8 hours as opposed to 2-2.5 hours. Now I have to lug around the power adapter which is more weight. Nice thinking there, Samsung. Probably cost cutting factor though.

Back to the goodies. This laptop is very fast as it comes with an Intel i3 (slow version) but its still multitudes faster than similar Atom netbooks and a 4GB ram. I won't be playing high end 3D games, I have a desktop for that, but you can watch HD movies and still do other things just fine.. Staples salesperson says the MS Office was a trial version but they were wrong, you are given a full version key (though it lacks Outlook Express and other stuff that is found on the Professional version of office). Comes with MS Office 2010 Home/Student edition(powerpoint, excel, word, onenote) and the only bloatware I had to remove was Norton and Wildtangent games. Kindle software comes with it too but I actually am using it so for some it might be considered bloatware.. That's about it so far, might come back later to do an update.

I'd say it's a good laptop for the student or the office worker.

==========================
**Update: Dec 03, 2011**
==========================
I still have the same feelings about the laptop. I replaced the hard drive with a Samsung Solid State Drive [SSD] (this laptop uses a thinner than normal; 7mm VS the normal 9mm). Using an SSD is probably the best upgrade you can do to ANY computer because hard drives (non-SSD) is usually the slowest component. Now the laptop is turbo-fast! One thing I noticed though, because I had to re-install Windows 7, is that Samsung website does not have the hardware drivers/softwares for this laptop model. This model is not even listed! I ended up downloading the Samsung series 9 software. The drivers were downloaded using Windows Update (surprisingly Windows found all the drivers through updates).

FYI on the battery: People have reported bigger batteries on sale with this laptop and they say they get 6+ hours out of them. I learned to live with the 2.5 hours though..

P.S. The lag between keyboard and touchpad seems to have disappeared. I'm not sure if maybe because I got used to it or because of the new SSD or because of the new windows re-install.
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16 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Fantastic Ultraportable Laptop, December 21, 2011
This review is from: Samsung NP300U1A-A01US Ultra Portable 11.6" Laptop (1.30 GHz Intel Core i3-2357M Processor, 4 GB RAM, 320 GB Hard Drive, Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit) (Personal Computers)
For a few weeks, I've been playing with the Samsung 11.6" laptop on display at my local Staples store. I really liked the size, weight, and portability this laptop had to offer. I also liked that it ran a full version of Windows 7 Home. Staples finally put it on sale for half price this week. I bought this ultraportable laptop to replace my slow Toshiba Atom-processor netbook (with meager Windows 7 starter). What a fantastic deal. This ultraportable Samsung laptop is well made, has a sleek design, and is comfortable to use.

Once out of the slender box, I popped in the battery and plugged in the laptop into an outlet to charge the battery. It took about 2 hours. So far, my initial charge resulted in about 4 hours of use. Not bad.

The laptop keeps relatively cool and I hardly notice any fan noise. The initial setup/installation of the laptop was easy and quick. Network setup was easy as well as connecting to the network printer.

During the initial installation, the hard drive storage capacity was more like 294GB available. I ended up creating two partitions: C: (90GB) and D: (204GB). If I had to restore the system, my data on D: drive should be untouched.

As others have mentioned MS Office Home/Student edition was included along with an activation key. This version comes with Word, Excel, and Powerpoint.

Microsoft Live apps (Mail, Messenger, Movie Maker, & Photo Gallery) are included as well as MS Live Writer that I use to write posts to my blogs.

Trial version of Norton's Internet Security is included. I registered online and was able to extend the usage for 60 days. That's long enough for me to decide whether to get the complete package or use something else.

Other applications included: Kindle and Skype

I registered my new laptop at Samsung's website and they automatically extended my one year warranty an additional 3 months. When registering, the actual make and model does show up. I know on their main website, this model doesn't show up in the product listings.

As a photographer, I plan on using this laptop for traveling and also for use at home. Mostly for minor photo editing, emails, researching on the web, and maintaining my blogs. This is a fast laptop and I haven't seen any slowness or delays. This is a true winner at a wonderful price.

I will be back to update this review as I uncover new features.

** Update 12/22/11 **

For my initial two charges: I fully charged the battery and then disconnected the laptop from the AC power source. I use the laptop for about 4 hours (off charge) and then let the battery drain completely. I let the laptop go into hibernation (~5%) and then recharge the battery 100% full. Work for another 4 hours (off charge) and let the battery drain for the second time. Recharge 100% full.

After the two full initial charges, I can now recharge when I need to. I'm still getting 4 hours of use on a single charge. So far, I'm happy with this laptop and the results I'm getting.

** Update 12/22/11 **

I've installed Adobe Photoshop Elements 10 on this laptop and have no issues with running this software. I've tweaked how the app will run...e.g. pointed the scratch disk to my drive D: which is has the largest space. PE automatically selected the memory size to use...I think it was 70% of the RAM. I will mainly use this program to crop my pictures, minor adjustments to contrast/brightness, add my copyright notice, reduce the image size, and save for the web.

** Update 12/23/11 **

Being a Mac desktop user, I was getting frustrated with the Windows Updates on this laptop. One time, I shut down the laptop and had 65 updates! I still had enough juice in the battery and let the updates do its thing. I felt that every other time I would shut down the laptop and there additional updates. Some took a long time.

There's a setting on the desktop that allows you to change the automatic updates feature to just letting you know that there are updates available. That way I can do the updates when I want them to occur. Here is the location of the settings if you want to make the same changes: Start>Control Panel>System and Security>Windows Update>Change Settings.

** Update 12/23/11 **

I want to make a few comments on using the trackpad. Having Mac experience and using Apple hardware, I actually like this trackpad. Initially, I had problems with my cursor wandering around the desktop or all over a web page as I was typing. I believe that is because parts of my hand or thumb would graze over the trackpad and would make the cursor jump to different areas of the screen. After an hour or two of use, it appears that the trackpad has become one with me. Strange I know. The initial issues I had are gone. The single long click button on the trackpad works like it's suppose to (left and right clicks) and works well.

** Update 03/01/12 **

This laptop travels well. I have taken this along with me on a two week cruise around the Caribbean. I mostly used it to upload and back up the 3600 pictures I took. The small size worked well for me. While on the ship, I was able to leave the laptop in the drawer when not in use. I didn't feel burdened carrying around this light laptop.

** Update 04/21/12 **

I've uncovered a neat battery calibration tool that's included in the laptop's BIOS. I ran it a few weeks ago and I'm happy to report back that it really works. I now actually get four hours of battery life on a single charge. That's while my screen brightness is set to 2 or 3 out the eight bars.

I unplug my laptop from the power source and power down the laptop. I turn the laptop back on and hit F2 as the BIOS is loading. While in the BIOS settings, there should be a Battery Calibration selection. Once selected, it will tell you to unplug the laptop from the power source and then it will force a drain on the battery. There's a bar displayed to show the status. I believe I saw maximum time was five hours depending how much juice is left on your battery. Once the battery is drained, the laptop should be plugged back in to the power source and then allowed to fully charged.

I don't know how many times this should be done. I would think after a few months of ongoing laptop use and I start to notice a drastic decline in the battery life from a single charge, I would probably do another calibration.
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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Fairly good, a few complaints., February 4, 2012
By 
Robert A. Schmidt (Granger, IA/Springfield, MO) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Samsung NP300U1A-A01US Ultra Portable 11.6" Laptop (1.30 GHz Intel Core i3-2357M Processor, 4 GB RAM, 320 GB Hard Drive, Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit) (Personal Computers)
Length:: 8:07 Mins


So a quick summary of Pro's/Con's:

Pro:
Thin design, good looking cover.
Keyboard is good and feels bigger than it is,
display is not exceptional but it's crisp and clear.
CPU is powerful, comes with 4GB of RAM
Microsoft Office 2010 full version (not pro, so no Access or Outlook)
Bluetooth 3.0
Bloatware isn't too bad....

Con:
Battery life is poor (I've been getting maybe 2.5 hours while using MS Office)
No USB 3.0 Ports
While the case never gets hot, the CPU does run on the warm side (around 45 C with nothing running) - Disregard comment in video about not getting above mid 50's, it was at about 70 Celsius while rendering this video. It got VERY warm.
Fan can be on the loud side.
Samsung is very poor, microphone should not have been right next to the touch pad.
Price - This would be an absolute steal at $350, or even $400. At $500 I expect a 6 cell battery for a netbook, it's got everything else so I really wish it came with a 6 cell.

Alternatives:
Samsung NP305U1A or any E-450/E-350 AMD or Intel Atom Netbook/Ultraportable. Unless you can get one for $400 or less, the i3 Sandybridge is much more powerful and worth the extra cost.
Samsung NP350U2A/Lenovo X120e or other i3 ultraportables. They usually run around $550-$600, but most come with a 6 cell battery. If you need the extra battery life it could be worth it, the NP350U2A also has a slightly larger 12.5in screen.

If you insist on getting a Solid State Drive, you'll pay about $850 for a Series 5 13.3 ultrabook with the i5 2467M processor. If you have the budget this would be an excellent move up as it has much better battery life (same 4 cell battery though) and the i5 CPU has turbo boost which will be noteably faster. In addition the ultrabook chassis is much higher quality. The price is getting close to twice as much however, so I don't think many buyers will be cross shopping the two.

My personal preference would be an Asus U31 series, preferably with the i5. They can be had for under $600, come with an external GT 520M video card (which helps a little) and have much better battery life, though they are slightly cheaper build quality, are thicker and heavier as well.

Passmark Benchmark ratings:

Battery / Plugged-In

Overall: 527.9 / 771.6
CPU: 1040.6 / 1761.8
2D GPU: 211.5 / 304.1
3D GPU: 167.3 / 205.1
Memory: 331.3 / 557.8
Disk: 554.4 / 550.2
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars It has a key for the FULL License Microsoft Home / Student Office key. (that's a $100 value in itself!),, November 12, 2011
This review is from: Samsung NP300U1A-A01US Ultra Portable 11.6" Laptop (1.30 GHz Intel Core i3-2357M Processor, 4 GB RAM, 320 GB Hard Drive, Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit) (Personal Computers)
The computer has very good spec. Powerful enough as an ultra portable laptop.

The most awesome thing is - it HAS FULL License Microsoft Student Office key. (that's a $100 value in itself!). So buying this for less than $500 bucks is a great deal!
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13 of 14 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Good but even BETTER if you paid only $350!!, November 3, 2011
This review is from: Samsung NP300U1A-A01US Ultra Portable 11.6" Laptop (1.30 GHz Intel Core i3-2357M Processor, 4 GB RAM, 320 GB Hard Drive, Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit) (Personal Computers)
I did not buy this from Amazon; I actually bought this during the firestorm sale at Staples for $350 out the door, which is an awesome deal to me IMHO.

Pros:
- PRICE!!,
- small, portable & light, bluetooth,
- nice brush metal design,
- did not come with a TON of bloatware,
- good quality webcam, SD slot,
- HAS FULL License Microsoft Student Office key. (that's a $100 value in itself!),
- 4Gb memory,

Cons:
-Only real con I have is that the battery life doesn't last so long, it is a 4000mAh battery (but that can be overcome.. have to buy a 7800mAh battery which extends from 3hrs of usage to about 5.5hrs Google for the battery).
-HD space could be bigger and faster but I don't care since i'm using for web surfing only. I have a quad-core,8Gb PC to handle bigger tasks.
- only 1 slot for memory (which is fine standard 4gb installed)

I'm not going to play games on this laptop so I do not care about Video bench marks or do photoshop, video editing.

I wouldn't get it if it was $600, but it's definitely a steal for $350.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Unusually awesome little notebook, March 11, 2012
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Samsung NP300U1A-A01US Ultra Portable 11.6" Laptop (1.30 GHz Intel Core i3-2357M Processor, 4 GB RAM, 320 GB Hard Drive, Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit) (Personal Computers)
Great value for a well-built, thin and light alternative to clunky, heavier notebooks and anemic netbooks. I'd been shopping for iPads for my wife, but she really wanted a physical keyboard, and that's an additional (and not insignificant) cost for iPads and nearly all other tablets. This Samsung ultra portable laptop has the lightweight of a tablet with the functionality of a real notebook PC. Best of both worlds. "I love this little thing," my wife just said. "It's just so wonderful."

Nothing's perfect, of course, though this Samsung's "CONS" list is pretty minimal.
- The reviews here say it comes with a free, full Student version of MS-Office (World, Excel, PowerPoint and Outlook). That, unfortunately, ain't the case. What you get is MS Word Starter 2010 and MS Excel Starter 2010 -- stripped-down versions of Word and Excel that feature advertising in a small window to the lower right of your screen. I've used the Student edition of MS Office before. This is not it. But the software is useful, and it is free.
- The keyboard works well, though my wife finds that the cursor jumps around while she types, she suspects that's more due to her typing habits than a problem with the notebook, because her previous HP laptop did the same thing. (I do wish you could scroll by dragging your finger along the right side of the trackpad, as is commonly found on other notebooks. That doesn't seem possible on this one, but it's not a biggee.)
- The speakers are tinny, but they're louder than we expected. Louder, in fact, than the speakers on my $1,200 Fujitsu Lifebook.
- We love the small and lightweight power converter, but there's an odd, barrel-shaped, plastic somethingorother integrated into the power cord about two inches from where power jack connects to the laptop, and it's just cludgey.

We've had this little guy running daily for a month, and so far, so good. Over the years, I've burned through a bunch of laptops and have pretty much sworn off HP, Toshiba, and now Fujitsu (not worth the upcharge). Perhaps Samsung, which appears to do such a great job with its consumer electronics products, will be our laptop brand of choice going forward.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Samsung 300np, January 22, 2012
This review is from: Samsung NP300U1A-A01US Ultra Portable 11.6" Laptop (1.30 GHz Intel Core i3-2357M Processor, 4 GB RAM, 320 GB Hard Drive, Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit) (Personal Computers)
Great computer for the money- got it at Staples for $350.00 and includes word software.
No problems to date. Purchased 12/23/11. Only bad thing about the computer is the battery. Thought I would post the replacement battery I ordered that fits quite well; seems to offer 6-8 hours of run time.

Battery Info: 6600 mah from batteryclerk.com
sku# CS-SNC310HB
"Replacement Battery for Samsung AA-PB0TC4B, AA-PB8NC6W, AA-PB0TC4R (Black)
$38.50 + s/h $8.90 - discount code $2.70 = $44.70.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Excellent notebook, January 25, 2012
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Samsung NP300U1A-A01US Ultra Portable 11.6" Laptop (1.30 GHz Intel Core i3-2357M Processor, 4 GB RAM, 320 GB Hard Drive, Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit) (Personal Computers)
Very good notebook,acceptable battery life, fast processor, small and lightweight but to me the most impressive feature is the full size HDMI which allows me to stream movies from Netflix and watch videos downloaded from my flip cam in 720p and share with family and friends.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars PERFECT size for college students!, January 20, 2012
This review is from: Samsung NP300U1A-A01US Ultra Portable 11.6" Laptop (1.30 GHz Intel Core i3-2357M Processor, 4 GB RAM, 320 GB Hard Drive, Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit) (Personal Computers)
I bought this for my son who's going off to college and another for me to replace my old 14" Toshiba laptop.

I am puzzled by folks who buy their kids 15.6" laptops for college... Would YOU want to lug around a giant 15.6" laptop in your backpack? I think not. This laptop is PERFECT size for college students. Keyboard is "small" but not cramped like a netbook, and after using it for a few minutes, it's surprisingly easy to type on. Back at the dorm room, just plug in an external keyboard & monitor, and it feels just like a desktop computer. It's also reasonably fast and has no problem running PopCap games, etc.

Trackpad is OK if you forgot your mouse, but you'll want a wireless mouse... definitely opt for a bluetooth mouse even though they're hard to find, since that keeps all three of your USB ports free. For best results, go to Control Panel->mouse, select the Elan tab, and click the box to automatically disable the trackpad when you have an external mouse connected.

It doesn't have a CD/DVD drive (which would be a bad thing... it would make it bigger & harder to lug around campus), but you can buy an external USB CD/DVD drive (even a burner) if you need one. If you "need" to run CDs/DVDs on the laptop away from the dorm room, you can install the free version of Daemon Tools Lite, which lets you load CD/DVD images onto your hard drive & mount them as if they were "real" CDs/DVDs. I've been making images on my desktop that I transfer to my laptop over the network & mount with Daemon Tools Lite, which works out pretty well... the image also serves as a backup of the CD/DVD in case it gets scratched.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Easy peasy, March 20, 2013
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Samsung NP300U1A-A01US Ultra Portable 11.6" Laptop (1.30 GHz Intel Core i3-2357M Processor, 4 GB RAM, 320 GB Hard Drive, Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit) (Personal Computers)
Bought this used. First one came damaged and seller (Richmond Electronics) took it back and replaced it quickly and with grace, so I recommend the company. I often buy "refurbished" because these machines really get a thorough rebuild. Now to the review.
This is an easy effective notebook. I find it just the right size. I'm too much of a technophobe to use an ipad. Chiclet keyboard is great. Screen resolution more than adequate. Sound is pretty bad but hey, you want stereo, go get a stereo. Short battery life but for my needs, it's not a big deal. Keep in mind that these notebooks don't have a DVD reader and you'll be uploading all your software, which is not a big deal considering how fast pc's access the net nowadays. So overall, I think I got a great deal.
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