Log in

View Full Version : HP's Envy 14 Laptop Put Under the Microscope by Engadget and Laptop Magazine

Jason Dunn
08-04-2010, 01:00 PM
<p><strong><a href="http://www.engadget.com/2010/08/03/hp-envy-14-review/" target="_blank">Engadget:</a></strong> <em>"The HP Envy 14 is like the final revision of a C+ term paper that always had potential, but just needed an bit of extra information and refinement to get an A. In fact, when HP introduced the Envy 14, the company was rather blunt about the fact that many of the issues that plagued the original Envy systems had been addressed, including the lack of an optical drive and backlight keyboard, the frustrating touchpad and the heat caused by the Core i7 processor."</em></p><p><a href="http://www.laptopmag.com/review/laptops/hp-envy-14.aspx?page=1" target="_blank"><strong>Laptop:</strong></a> <em>"About a year has passed since HP released its Envy 13 and 15, high-style notebooks aimed directly at Apple's MacBook Pros. We generally liked the designs of these metal-bodied machines, but their high prices and mediocre ergonomics dampened our enthusiasm. Now here comes the Envy 14, which starts at $999 ($1,289 as configured)."</em></p><p><img src="http://images.thoughtsmedia.com/resizer/thumbs/size/600/lpt/auto/1280895079.usr1.jpg" style="border: 1px solid #d2d2bb;" /></p><p>I've read both the <a href="http://www.engadget.com/2010/08/03/hp-envy-14-review/" target="_blank">Engadget</a> and <a href="http://www.laptopmag.com/review/laptops/hp-envy-14.aspx?page=1" target="_blank">Laptop</a> review, and they've both given the Envy 14 an 80% rating - which is quite good for a Windows laptop. Note I said "for a Windows laptop" - most Mac laptops tend to get rated slightly higher, but that's pretty typical industry-wide. All in all, the Envy 14 looks like a real contender - but it's a shame HP couldn't do more with the battery life. The Envy 14 supports HP's battery slice technology, but the slice costs a staggering $200...that's 20% of the base Envy 14 price. Yeeouch! Still, expensive or not, I'm glad HP offers it - it's my opinion that laptop makers have gotten lazy when it comes to offering innovative extended battery options. <MORE /></p><p>One of the things that I can't quite get over is that neither reviewer mentioned the extremely..."unique" pattern that HP put on the lid of the Envy 14. Seriously, this is not a subtle design:</p><p><img src="http://images.thoughtsmedia.com/resizer/thumbs/size/600/lpt/auto/1280895782.usr1.jpg" style="border: 1px solid #d2d2bb;" /></p><p>I personally find that rather repulsive and wouldn't purchase the Envy 14 for that very reason; or, if I did, I'd immediately want to cover it up with a skin. I just don't understand HP's design choices sometimes; laptops are like phones in that they're personal extensions of your style. When you take out your laptop in public, you want to like the way it looks. Why does HP insist on these extremely aggressive designs on the lids? I like about 10% of the designs they put on them, which is one of the reasons why I end up buying Dell laptops - with a Dell laptop, I can select the colour I want, giving me the feeling like it's really "my" laptop. With HP, not only can't I chose the colour I want, I can't even chose to get it without the awful pattern on the lid!</p><p>What do you think about HP's designs? Do you like them? Does it impact your buying decision when shopping for a laptop?</p>

Lee Yuan Sheng
08-04-2010, 03:41 PM
Well, here the i5 version costs 25% more while giving 2GB instead of 4GB RAM... and we still don't get rid of the stupid design on the cover. It's as you said, it's aggressive and not necessarily to everyone's taste.

08-05-2010, 09:24 PM
I have owned three HP notebooks over the years, not counting my brief experience with netbooks (shudder). I have loved the look of the Envy 13 since it was released. It is a solid yet light weight machine and has the best trackpad of any computer HP has made. I just couldn't get my head around the price of the machine. So I purchased the not in the same class but still cool-looking, dm3. I kept the non-matching stand alone optical drive from my unlamented dm2 to supplement it.

All that said, I was excited when I heard about the Envy 14 because it was listed at a price below the 13. A 14 inch screen is edging up to beyond what I consider ultra-portable, but it has all that other cool Envy quality. It was a real possibility until I saw it in person. The 14 has that weird design on the lid. Jason calls it aggressive. I call it icky. The Envy 13 did not have a design on the lid, while the 15 did. Now both of the new models have it. Why HP? Why?

I was able to handle the so called "coffee" design on the dm2. And the Envy 13 has a pattern on the deck surrounding the trackpad and I could handle that. But all over the lid? It isn't subtle. It isn't attractive. I won't be buying. The dm3 with its simple brushed metal look will have to carry on for me a while longer.