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Samsung X520

Samsung X520 notebook

Nine-hour battery life – hit or myth?

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There’s 4GB of DDR3 memory installed. However, with the 32-bit version of Windows 7 Home Premium, only around 3GB of this available to the processor – Samsung confirmed to us that it’s not currently possible to opt for 64-bit Windows 7, which is a shame.

Samsung X520

A scratch-proof coating keeps the lid nice and neat

PCMark Vantage returned an overall score of 2618, which only goes to highlight the low-powered nature of the X520. In the slightly less-demanding PCMark05, it achieved an overall score of 3427, with 3078 and 1672 in the CPU and Graphics tests respectively.

With an Intel’s GS45 chipset at its heart, the X520 runs off integrated graphics in the form of a GMA 4500MHD core, so only the least demanding of 3D games at the lowest resolutions will be playable. 3DMark Vantage refused to grace the X520 with a score, but we did get a result of 877 out of 3DMark06 at the laptop’s native resolution of 1366 x 768.

The X520’s fan remained active throughout our benchmarks and, despite being barely audible, did a good job of keeping things cool – the only noticeable hot-spot was on the belly of the laptop.

So, back to that nine-hour battery life claim. Samsung states that actual battery life results “vary based on configuration”, and in our stress-fuelled PCMark Vantage loop test the X520 managed to keep going for three hours and 20 minutes.

Samsung X520

Samsung has kept the X520’s chassis impressively slim

It’s by no means a bad result, but not nearly as impressive as the recently reviewed Packard Bell Butterfly, which managed five-and-a-half hours in the same test. Then again, keep in mind the Packard Bell has a single-core processor and 13.3in screen.

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