Samsung may not be a huge name in the North American computer market, but the South Korean electronics giant is looking to raise its profile, bringing its “premium” R80 computer line to consumers via top retailer Best Buy. Samsung is positioning the systems as multimedia and entertainment powerhouses, and the R80 series feature Intel Core i3 and i5 processors, Nvidia graphics, Blu-ray options, and screen sizes of 14-, 15.6-, and 17-3 inches—and the 17.3-inch model will be exclusive to BestBuy.com.
“Best Buy continues to be an important retail partner for Samsung,” said Samsung Electronics Information Technology Division director of product marketing Todd Nouman, in a statement. “True to Samsung’s unique, customer-focused design aesthetic, these mobile PCs are flexible enough to be used as mobile devices or desktop replacements for all-day use.”
At the high end, the BestBuy.com-exclusive R780 sports an Intel Core i5 processors, a 17.3-inch 1,600 by 900-pixel display driven by Nvidia GeForce GT330M graphics, 4 GB of RAM, a 500 GB hard drive, a DVD Super-Multi drive, HDMI output, gigabit Ethernet, and 802.11b.g.n and Bluetooth 2.1+EDR wireless networking. The system also packs a 1.3 megapixel webcam and 4 watt stereo speakers.
Stepping back a little in screen-size—but upping the high-def factor—the Samsung R580 will roll with a 15.6-inch 1,366 by 768-pixel display driven by Nvidia GeForce 310M graphics, but will also pack a Blu-ray drive for movie-watching pleasure; most of the rest of the R580’s specs match its 17-inch sibling. The Samsung R480 takes things down another notch, dropping to a 14-inch 1,366 by 768-pixel display powered by Intel GMA 4500MHD graphics, an Intel Core i3 processor, and a VGA-resolution webcam—however, it still packs the Blu-ray drive.
All the systems will be available March 7, and ship with Windows 7 Home Premium (64-bit). The 17-inch R780 will start at $929, while the Blu-ray-equipped R580 and $480 will start at $829 and $729, respectively.