Living with it
Samsung’s latest 2-in-1 is nothing short of a pleasure to use – from the moment you pick up its light, aluminium body to opening it up and getting to work with its Super AMOLED display. The trackpad and keyboard keep this standard up too, with an impressively large trackpad flanking a keyboard with a surprising amount of travel – if lacking a bit of tactile response.
Performance is up there with the Dell XPS 13 and the HP Spectre x360 14, even slightly topping rivals when it came to our graphical testing – meaning you’ll be able to eke out some basic gaming in titles like Rocket League and Fortnite. It does fall down when it comes to fan noise – they are very eager. Even when carrying out fairly low demand productivity tasks – 3-6 tabs in Chrome – the fans got going. It wasn’t all that distracting but it’s there and most substantial than rivals.
Thankfully, Samsung has included some of its own performance settings with this device – including “Silent” and “No Fan” modes. After eagerly taking advantage of the latter, there was little slowdown of note – the underside did get a tad warmer – though you’ll likely have to shift it back to normal under more sustained workloads. Fan speed aside, this laptop will comfortably tackle all the productivity demands you’d expect of a high-end ultrabook – upwards of 15 browsers tabs and multi-tasking across media apps… no problem.
While the keyboard is certainly the most impressive performer here when viewed in the context of this laptop’s extremely thin design, the speakers come in a close second. They don’t match the capabilities of Apple’s MacBooks but the bass isn’t a million miles away. There’s a well-rounded quality to the sound, with a wide soundstage and genuinely impactful bass. The volume doesn’t hit the heights of many rivals but we don’t suspect blasting out music from your laptop is a priority for many.
There’s a half-decent port selection too. You may be still reaching for a dongle if you’re someone who’d like a full-size SD card reader or HDMI port but, for most, the combination of 2x USB-C 3.2 ports, a Thunderbolt 4 port, headphone jack and microSD reader will be a solid offering. There’s a fingerprint scanner too for swift sign-in convenience.
2-in-1 fans, this laptop hits all the key features you’ll be looking for. Whether you set in up in tent or tablet mode, it works great. The hinge is slightly less sturdy than its key rival HP’s Spectre x360 14 but it stays in place once you put it down so there’s little difference day-to-day. It’s also the best 2-in-1 laptop we’ve ever used in tablet mode. Of course, you can’t escape the awkward feeling of having the keys on the back of the device but, in terms of weight distribution and just not feeling cumbersome to hold, the Galaxy Book Pro 360 nails it.