HP Keeps The Notebooks Rolling Outby Dustin Sklavos on May 9, 2011 10:45 AM EST
- Posted in
- IT Computing
- Sandy Bridge
Every time I feel like I'm done posting about HP's hardware refreshes, they have another press conference and another announcement. Typically a constant stream of releases and conferences is indicative of a back and forth between competing vendors, trying to steal thunder, but Dell, Acer, and Toshiba have all been strangely silent. Today is at least a little different, though; HP is fleshing out their refreshed business lines a little more, but they're also updating two of their consumer notebooks.
First on the block is HP's ProBook 5330m. If you've been following our coverage of HP's business notebook announcements (and we have a review of the EliteBook 8460p en route as well), the 5330m is going to seem a little old hat at first: it has a Sandy Bridge processor (no dedicated graphics options) and 13.3" screen inside a sleek brushed aluminum shell. The difference here is that the ProBook is the first business-class notebook in HP's stable to feature their much-ballyhooed Beats Audio. In our experience with the HP Envy 17, we found Beats Audio to be at least a moderate improvement over the typical notebook audio (though it still trailed in comparison to the sound systems on Dell's XPS laptops). The ProBook 5330m also has an optional backlit keyboard. HP expects it to be available today starting at $799.
HP is also introducing two new EliteBooks, the 2560p and 2760p. From the model numbers one might suspect these are larger desktop replacement notebooks, but actually they're both 12-inch machines. The EliteBook 2560p is typical of HP's new line of business notebooks, just fun sized, with a 12.5" 1366x768 matte screen and the usual Sandy Bridge trimmings. The EliteBook 2560p is expected to be available on May 23rd starting at $1,099.
The 2760p on the other hand is a new tablet PC, proving this form factor just refuses to die. It has some of the same brushed aluminum style of its kin, but has a keyboard that hearkens back to HP's last generation. HP offers it with a 1280x800 "ultra-wide-viewing-angle" multi-touch screen standard with optional "Outdoor View" version. Odds are good this is packing an IPS panel, so individuals looking for an alternative to Lenovo's IPS 12" notebook might want to check it out. Interestingly, HP says they're keeping the 16:10 aspect ratio on the 2760p because of customer demand; we're not sure why no one demands the same on other laptop LCDs, as 16:9 generally isn't looked on favorably by most of our readers. The EliteBook 2760p is expected to be available today starting at $1,499.
Finally, HP is refreshing their Mini 210, dv4, and ENVY 14 notebooks, making this a good day for fans of more portable machines.
Since we know you're champing at the bit for another Atom-based netbook and you can hardly contain yourselves, we'll start with the Mini 210. It comes with an Intel Atom N455, 1GB of DDR3, Beats Audio, and a 10.1" glossy, LED-backlit 1024x600 screen. The shell has seen a slight redesign to bring the Mini 210 in line with HP's other consumer notebooks, but the insides are the same stuff you've been suffering through for the past couple of years. It's expected to be available on June 15th for $299, but if you're in the market for a netbook you may want to save yourself some time and energy and just pony up for the Bronze Editor's Choice award-winning dm1z with AMD's E-350 Fusion processor. It's $100 more, but it has a higher-resolution screen, full-sized keyboard, and usable internal hardware.
The dv4 and ENVY 14 are much less changed. Each has been updated to Intel's Sandy Bridge, and features Beats Audio and HP's CoolSense technology to keep the notebook running frosty and quiet, depending on the workload. The ENVY 14 also sees an upgrade to USB 3.0. The updated dv4 starts at $599 and is expected to be available on May 18th; the updated ENVY 14 starts at $999 and is expected to be available June 15th.
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Chudilo - Monday, May 9, 2011 - linkThis is more of a product release and should not be posted on this technology blog unless it contains something revolutionary.
Kristian Vättö - Monday, May 9, 2011 - linkThe 2760p isn't one of those regular laptops so maybe it makes this worth publishing. I agree with you that this probably isn't something that most people find interesting, especially when OEMs like HP update their machines very often.
JarredWalton - Monday, May 9, 2011 - link2760p, 5330p, and the updated Envy 14 are all products that might be worth knowing about. The Envy 14 in particular had a lot of people that really liked it (and the upgrade LCD), so if the new SNB version offers a good LCD I'm sure it will be popular.
ImSpartacus - Monday, May 9, 2011 - linkFor smaller business laptops (11.6"<screen size<15.6"), I think 16:9 screens are fine.
...as long as they feature 1600x900 pixels.
If a company wants to put out a $500 12.5" laptop, they can do whatever they have to do to make that price point.
But when we're talking about machines well north of a grand, 1366x768 doesn't cut it.
Conficio - Monday, May 9, 2011 - link1920 x 1080 is bad on a desktop, so I'd wager that 1600x900 is badon a laptop as well.
Give me 16:10 or 4:3. Or set your sights higher and figure out how to make displays that do get a paper like ratio (portrait mode). Please inventors there are patents to be issued for this. The idea is free, you make it happen!
ArKritz - Monday, May 9, 2011 - linkWell Lenovo gave it a shot with the W700DS and W701DS.
seapeople - Monday, May 9, 2011 - link1920x1080 beats 1680x1050 hands down.
1600x900 beats 1440x900 hands down.
I have a 1600x900 laptop screen, and I am currently posting on here and watching a Braves game. Guess what pixels I am most limited by? Horizontal pixels.
Give me a 16x9 with equivalent pixel count as 16x10 and I think it's fine. Of course, many manufacturers use 16x9 as an excuse to cut pixels, but that's another issue...
Dustin Sklavos - Tuesday, May 10, 2011 - linkHow is 1080p bad on a desktop? Respectfully, I have 1920x1200 screens and a 1080p screen right next door, and I honestly don't feel like I've lost a tremendous amount of real estate with the 1080p. Actually, in editing video I almost prefer the 1080p screen.
Over time you'll notice that while bigger screens have lost some real estate, smaller ones have actually GAINED a bunch with most of them standardizing at 1080p from 19" on up, screen sizes where we usually had to deal with 1680x1050 or worse.
DudleyUC - Monday, May 9, 2011 - linkYou originally gave the dm1z the Silver Editor's Choice, saying it was one bad screen away from being Gold. Has something changed to make it Bronze now?
alephxero - Monday, May 9, 2011 - linkI take it the "much less changed" means that the refreshed Envy14 will still have the stupid 1366x768 display? Also, any word on whether the discrete graphics are updated from the old version?