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Samsung Galaxy Book 12 Review

The Samsung Galaxy Book 12 has an excellent screen, strong performance, and long battery life. Samsung galaxy book 12 gets hot if multitasking for a long time. The Samsung galaxy book beats the surface on value by including a keyword cover and stylus in the box. Samsung galaxy book hits the reset button on Samsung’s 2 in 1 line, with windows 10, two size options, and Intel Core i5 processors.

Over the last few years, 2-in -1 and hybrid systems have gone a from clumsy pipe dream to something of a creative outlet for normally stodgy computer makers. It’s also given usually smartphone-centric brands like Samsung and LG an entry point into the computing market, by leveraging existing skills-building tablets.

The Samsung galaxy Book 12 hit the reset button on Samsung’s 2 in 1 line with windows 10, two size options, Intel core j5 processor, and an improved super AMOLED screen that promise deep black levels and unmatched contrast.

Pricing starts at $1,130 for the 12-inch version, which has 4GB of RAM and a 128GB solid state drive. Our review unit, upgraded to 8GB of RAM and a 256GB SSD, retails for $1,330.


Our review unit packed in the Core i5-7200U with 8GB of RAM, a step up from the 4GB of RAM found in the base 12-inch model. It’s bound to perform much better than the Core M chips that are becoming more common, but is far from a powerhouse.

Compared to similar systems, the Samsung Galaxy Book holds its own performance-wise. Granted, these are all a far cry from the sort of performance we see from higher-end laptops, but power tends to take a backseat to versatility and portability with 2-in-1s — a solid trade, if it’s fair on both sides.

None of them are built for encoding video, so the slow times on the 4K conversion test shouldn’t be a major concern.

In everyday use, the Samsung Galaxy Book didn’t feel sluggish or unresponsive, which becomes the more pertinent question at this end of the performance spectrum. Snappy performance and fast boot times are critical, and the Galaxy Book 12 did not disappoint.


The Samsung Galaxy Book has a pair of USB Type-C ports, and a 3.5mm headphone jack. That’s a common set of configurations for the category, and even beats out the new Surface Pro, which only boats a Type-A USB Port.

The Samsung Galaxy Book charges over either of its Type-C ports, where the Surface’s magnetic power connection pops right out if someone trips on the cable. There are advantages on both sides, but the Galaxy Book certainly has the better set of wired plugs.

For wireless connections, the Samsung Galaxy Book packs in 802.11ac Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 4.2, and optional LTE.


As we mentioned above, the Samsung Galaxy Book’s detachable keyboard and touchpad don’t set the bar high for sturdiness and space.

Despite a physical connection to the system, we often saw lag in keyboard and trackpad response after the system was sitting idle for a short time.

It didn’t take long, and even during our screen testing, we had issues when we didn’t touch either input for less than 30 seconds. It’s a minor inconvenience, but also one that shouldn’t exist.


Finally, the samsung Galaxy Book has its moment in the sun. Samsung’s displays have always been a strong point for the brand, and it was one of the first manufacturers to put OLED displays into laptops.

Organic LEDs create their own light when powered, so there’s no glow in the dark areas of the screen, resulting in perfectly flat black levels.

The Samsung galaxy book also manages to pack in some serious speakers for its size. Even at full volume, they produce loud, clear sound, with just a hint of distortions, something we’re not used to hearing from laptops in general, let alone a 12-inch 2 in 1.


Coming in under two pounds, the Samsung Galaxy Book is exceptionally compact. It folds up neatly, and its small footprint means it shouldn’t have any issue fitting into a small back or laptop backpack. That’s only half the story.

The other half is battery life, an area where 2-in-1s don’t just need to be average, they need to be excellent. It’s one of the main draws in a lightweight laptop, and the Samsung Galaxy Book does fine, but that’s about the nicest we can say.


The SSD in our review unit had 256GB of capacity, which is the other half of the upgrade from the base 12-inch model. The drive connects over the usual SATA standard. Some systems are moving towards the PCIe connection, which has performance benefits.

While Samsung’s read and write speeds were competitive, both the HP EliteBook and Surface Pro 4 beat them handily, thanks to their use of the faster PCIe connection.

The Surface Pro 4 is a middle ground, with faster read speeds, but write speeds that fall in line with the Samsung Galaxy Book.

Given the price, we feel giving the Samsung Galaxy Book 12 a PCIe drive would’ve been the right call. It’s ironic, actually – Samsung itself produces some of the best solid state drives, but its 2-in-1 falls behind competitors in this area.


We have yet to see a 2-in-1 with any sort of graphical power, and the Samsung Galaxy Book is no different. It’s Intel HD 620 integrated GPU is fine for 2D games and HD movies, but lacks the sort of power, and driver support, needed for modern 3D titles.

The 3DMark scores of the competitors fell close to each other, but were all well short of even the most basic dedicated GPU options found in larger systems.

Not that we expect anywhere near that sort of performance, particularly in smaller, portable machines like the Surface Pro and Samsung Galaxy Book.


There are two distinct pieces to Samsung’s Galaxy Book — the tablet, and the detachable keyboard. The tablet itself shows off Samsung’s strong points, with a design language lifted directly off its Galaxy Smartphone line.

It has sleek, rounded edges, and a medium-dark silver color that users may be familiar with from the Chromebook Plus.

It’s light enough to work well as a tablet, with a texture that doesn’t slip, although the buttons on the upper left aren’t exactly suitable.

The trade-off is that the Samsung Galaxy Book is so very, very light, it doesn’t feel like a sturdy system. There’s no panel flex, and there are no major gaps to speak of, but the Competiting Surface Pro keeps its weight below two pounds as well, and feels a lot more premium than the Galaxy Book. The shape is also very nondescript – which will work for some people.

Both systems suffer the same issues when used as a laptop. The Samsung Galaxy Book has a folio keyboard, so it wraps around the system like a hot dog bun, with magnetic points on the cover to stick to magnetic points on the tablet.

Propping up the screen means scooting the back cover down to one of several points, as opposed to the kickstand on the Surface Pro, which adjustable to any position along its range of motion.

While neither system sits well on your lap, the Samsung Galaxy Book takes up gobs of space, which makes it particularly hard to use in tight quarters.

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