Samsung journeys into the realm of gaming notebooks with Odyssey

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Samsung has revealed its first ever gaming notebook range at CES 2017 this week and to us it looks like the firms first shot at appealing to gamers.

Oh yes, all the “gamer” features are there folks, red lighting, sharp angles (though not in terms of the chassis) and outlined WASD keys. The notebook even has a fancy name, Odyssey.

The Odyssey has both a 15.6inch and a 17.3 inch version both of which feature a Full HD (1 920 x 1080) anti-glare display and a quad core 7th Generation Intel Core i7 processor. The smaller of the two notebooks will house an NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 with 4GB or 2GB of GDDR5 memory. The GPU for the 17.3inch version is yet to be disclosed.

The keyboard isn’t much to write home about. The 17.3inch Odyssey features an individually lit keyboard that can be customised to your hearts content but sadly the 15.6inch version only features one static colour for keyboard lighting. There is also a really bizarre trapezoid around the touchpad, it doesn’t seem to have an additional function and appears to be purely for looks and style.

The Odyssey comes in white if you’d like to show off how dirty your notebook gets.

Thankfully the Odyssey has no shortage of interface ports. Both iterations feature USB 3.0 (four in the 17.3inch version and one in the 15.6inch version), HDMI, ethernet, card readers and headphone and mic jacks (this is a combined port in the smaller notebook). The 17.3inch version also houses a USB Type C port which is nice.

As to cooling this plastic and LED laden beast Samsung has created something called the Hexaflow Vent which reportedly helps air move through the Odyssey more effectively.

Now, the price for all of this? In a report by The Verge the 15inch notebook is said to be starting at $1 199 (~R16 241) which isn’t bad but not great either. The trouble with the Odyssey is that it’s nothing different. Samsung has slapped some LEDs on a notebook, fitted it with an i7 and a GPU and tried to appeal to gamers.

To Samsung’s credit the performance of these notebooks seems serviceable on paper and we’re curious to see which GPU the firm fits into the 17.3inch Odyssey. It’s just a pity that Samsung didn’t try something different in a notebook market that is in dire need of revitalisation. Oh well as the faceless “they” say, if it ain’t broke don’t fix it.


Brendyn Lotz

Brendyn Lotz

Brendyn Lotz writes news, reviews, and opinion pieces for Hypertext. His interests include SMEs, innovation on the African continent, cybersecurity, blockchain, games, geek culture and YouTube.