Given the breadth of Samsung's penetration into the realms of smartphones, tablets, Chromebooks, and traditional portable computers, it beggars belief that the Korean chaebol has never produced a gaming laptop. That unoccupied niche is now filled with the company's just-announced Odyssey sub-brand of gaming-focused notebooks. A pair of models with large 15.6" and goliath-class 17.3" displays were shown at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas. Their styling is subdued—at least when compared to other gaming laptops—and Samsung is offering the machines in both black-and-red and white-and-red color schemes.
Both Odyssey models can be optioned with Intel Kaby Lake seventh-generation Core CPUs, up to quad-core Core i7 parts with 45W TDPs. The slowest CPU fitting that description is the Core i7-7700HQ with its 2.80GHz base frequency. Both versions also also use 1080p displays. Storage options include PCIe SSDs plus 2.5" hard drives for either size class.
The "smaller" model has red LED-backlit keys on its keyboard, with some special highlighting on the WASD keys. Up to 32GB of DDR4 memory can be stuffed into a pair of SODIMM slots. Graphics acceleration comes courtesy of the mobile version of the Nvidia GeForce GTX 1050. A 43Wh battery pack juices up the machine, and contributes to total system weight of 5.6 lbs (2.53kg). External connectivity on tap includes one USB 3.0 port, a pair of USB 2.0 jacks, an HDMI connector, and an audio combo jack.
While stepping up to the back-breaking 8.4 lbs (or 3.79 kg) heft of the 17.3" model doesn't net any extra screen resolution, it does provide a larger 93Wh battery, and four DIMM slots to fill with up to 64GB of DDR4 memory. Connectivity options are also improved, with traditional microphone and headphone jacks, four USB 3.0 ports, and a Thunderbolt 3 connector. Samsung hasn't said what graphics card options are on offer for the 17.3" model just yet, but its hefty frame and large battery suggests there may be something beefier than a GeForce GTX 1050 on tap.