Galaxy Book Flex or Galaxy Book Ion (assuming both 16GB RAM)? Includes poll

Discussion in 'Samsung' started by njweb, May 22, 2020 at 10:49 AM.

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Galaxy Book Flex or Galaxy Book Ion? (assuming both have 16GB RAM)

  1. FLEX - Galaxy Book Flex 15.6" 16GB RAM

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  2. ION - Galaxy Book Ion 15.6" 16 GB RAM

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  1. njweb

    njweb Notebook Enthusiast

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    I bought the Galaxy Book Flex 15.6" 16GB RAM version from Korea. I am very happy with it so far, although the Ion is definitely lighter, has slightly better battery life and the keyboard travel is slightly better according to Engadget comparison video of the two...
    However, now that the Ion can be upgraded to 24GB, I am wondering if I should try the Ion...

    Debating now whether to try the Ion and buy a 16GB DDR4-2666 RAM stick for a total of 24GB RAM.
    The screen looks well built on the Flex and the screen durability in case of impact is always one of my first concerns with a laptop.
    Guess I could always buy a Celicious (or equivalent) impact screen protector.

    Flex
    Flex Pros over Ion:
    Screen less likely to break than Ion?
    Solid build quality (at the expense of higher weight)
    nVidia and Iris Plus graphics (not sure how much of a real world difference vs Intel UHD only though if not gaming and not doing any 3D work etc.)

    Flex Cons vs. Ion:
    Noticeably heavier than Ion
    Reportedly keyboard travel is slightly less than Ion


    Ion
    Ion Pros vs. Flex:
    Much lighter weight than Flex
    Slightly better keyboard travel?
    RAM can be upgraded to 24GB using a 16GB DDR4-2666 stick.

    Ion Cons vs Flex:
    Screen potentially not as strong as Flex??? Not sure regarding this.
    Intel UHD

    Which would you get - Flex or Ion, assuming RAM is 16GB in each?
    Is the CPU difference anything I will notice? Checked a comparison site and not seeing any significant performance difference.
     
    Last edited: May 22, 2020 at 5:34 PM
  2. Worzyl

    Worzyl Notebook Consultant

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    Do you need the extra memory? Are you using or aiming to use the thunderbolt ports already on the flex?
     
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  3. Worzyl

    Worzyl Notebook Consultant

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    I'm still a little undecided so what be able to join the poll. I really do like the ION, but as I do 2d graphics/3d animation it would likely be in my best interest to purchase the Flex, because of the tablet feature, which I have put off for too long in my career. However, the Surface Book 3 Pro has been released which means that the prices of the Surface Book 2 Pro will come down considerably, so I may wait till I get back to the UK and pick one of those up instead.

    If you aren't using the screen much and already own some sort of tablet - then maybe the ION could be a good choice for you.
     
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  4. njweb

    njweb Notebook Enthusiast

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    In short so long as I have 16GB of RAM I am fine. Guess you were referring to 24 GB vs 16 GB right?
    8GB Ion (US model) and 12GB (Flex US model) respectively is / was not enough for me. 16GB (total) is fine however.
    That being said, IF I get the Ion for one or more of the other reasons cited, I will go to 24 GB total since I do not want to ever open it up again (back of the case is very delicate per Youtube video comments) and a 16GB stick is $67, so not a bad option vs. an 8 GB stick.
    E.g. Crucial 16GB DDR4 2666 MHz SODIMM Memory Module.

    I will be using one USB-C port (does not need to be Thunderbolt) for an external monitor (Asus ZenScreen) when traveling, so from a TB ports perspective the Ion should be fine too since it has 1 TB port (vs 2 on the Flex).

    Also something I neglected to mention, the 15.6" Ion supports a second SSD! Don't know if the Flex does too? The 13.3 Flex does not based on Lisa Gade's review (MobileTechReview)...
     
    Last edited: May 22, 2020 at 11:39 AM
  5. njweb

    njweb Notebook Enthusiast

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    Thanks! I do not plan (currently at least) to use the touchscreen much (that could change). I do own a small Galaxy tablet which I occasionally use...
    The Flex and Ion both have their pros and cons that's the dilemma; no clear winner unless you have to have a touch screen or unless you have to have a super lightweight laptop; then the Flex and Ion respectively stand out over one another.
    May pick up the Ion and RAM stick and see how I like it; still debating though, hence this poll to see what others think.:)

    Thanks again for your feedback!
     
  6. njweb

    njweb Notebook Enthusiast

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    Debating sticking with the Flex due to the dedicated graphics on my Korean version of the Flex (nVidia MX250) and 3 USB-C ports (vs only 1 USB-C and 2 older USB 3.x ports on the Ion - did not realize till now that 2 ports on the Ion are 3.x and not USB-C, just knew the Flex had 1 extra TB port...). USB-C is more future proof.

    But still not sure given the lighter weight of the Ion and the potentially better keyboard which, if true, would be important to me (Engadget says it is a bit better, but how much is the subjective part)...
    24GB RAM total is also a nice bonus (with the 16GB stick for $67) and the Ion actually has 2 SSD slots; not sure the Flex supports a second SSD...

    As you can see, I am still not fully decided. :)

    PS: Build quality is another factor that could trump weight, but have not felt the Ion yet...
     
    Last edited: May 22, 2020 at 5:12 PM
  7. Worzyl

    Worzyl Notebook Consultant

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    The ION also has a HDMI port and also has the option of the dedicated graphics card too.
     
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  8. njweb

    njweb Notebook Enthusiast

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    Thanks.
    Unfortunately the US version of the Ion only comes in the 8GB RAM variant, we have been discussing, and that does not include a dedicated video card option.
    The HDMI port is a nice plus on the Ion. My Flex came with an adapter for that I believe (the box is downstairs).

    I wonder if the Flex supports video-out over Thunderbolt and, if yes, does it support it for 1 or 2 external monitors given my 16GB Korean version of the Flex has the nVidia and Iris Plus graphics.
    Otherwise I wonder if any USB-C to DisplayPort or USB to HDMI adapters would work on my Flex, and if yes, would it support it for 1 or 2 monitors.

    I can test it today with one external monitor (i.e. with my Asus ZenScreen using the USB-C to USB-C cable). My Elitebook 1050 G1 works well with it.

    I may pick up the Ion to see if the keyboard is really better like Engadget says, too bad the store is over an hour away...
     
    Last edited: May 23, 2020 at 10:21 AM
  9. Worzyl

    Worzyl Notebook Consultant

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    Video showing upgrading the ram on the ION and also showing the space for a second ssd.

     
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  10. Worzyl

    Worzyl Notebook Consultant

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    BTW - how is the audio? I keep hearing that the sound isn't loud. I still like the speakers on my NP770z5e...
     
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