Samsung's S pen and its convertible display are the main differences between the Pro and the base model of the Notebook 9, which straddles the desktop replacement and ultraportable categories and won a PCMag Editors' Choice award last year. The battery-free pen lives in a slot beneath the keyboard, and when you remove it, Samsung's Air Command software will automatically launch on the screen, ready to take notes and edit documents.
The S Pen has a tiny 0.7-mm tip, the same size as many mechanical pencils, which means it offers a natural handwriting experience like you'd expect on paper, according to Samsung. The fact that it has 4,000 different pressure levels should also help.
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The rest of the notebook is a fairly ordinary, albeit powerful, convertible design. You can rotate the Full HD touch screen through 360 degrees, so the Notebook 9 Pro can function in notebook, tablet, stand, or tent modes. Both sizes feature the same processor and hard drive: a 2.7 Ghz seventh-generation Intel Core i7, and 256GB of flash storage.
Those are generous specs for a 13.3-inch notebook that starts at $1,099. Upgrading to the $1,299 15-inch version will double the memory from 8GB to 16GB, and add an AMD Radeon 540 graphics card with its own 2GB of RAM (the 13.3-inch only offers Intel integrated graphics). Both models come with Windows 10 Home, and start shipping on June 26.
The Pro's touch screen, pen, and 360-degree display aren't available on the base version, but all those features add a bit of weight. The 13.3-inch Notebook 9 Pro weighs in at 2.91 pounds, while the 15-inch version is 3.79 pounds. Compare that to the 15-inch Notebook 9's weight of 2.77 pounds.