HP Envy Sleekbook hands on review

We get our mitts on HP's latest notebook, available in both Intel Ultrabook and – as reviewed here – AMD Sleekbook flavours.

HP Envy Sleekbook hands-on - design and build

The Envy is available in two sizes – 14in and 15.6in. Underneath, it's finished in a rather fetching red, while on top both versions sport a  sexy brushed-aluminium lid, which looks particularly good on the black model seen here. That finish continues onto the keyboard surround, framing the chiclet keyboard (which features optional backlighting) and a multitouch trackpad.

HP Envy Sleekbook hands on review - HP Envy Sleekbook hands-on - design and build 2

That trackpad features a spun finish that proved nearly impossible to capture on camera, but looks pretty cool in the flesh. We got our hands on the larger 15.6in Envy, which, at a quoted 1.81kg, is a little heftier than the 14in Envy's starting weight of 1.7kg. At 19.8mm thick, it's still reasonably svelte.

More after the break...

HP Envy Sleekbook hands-on - Beats Audio

Like the HP Spectre XT, the Envy sports that tell-tale little red logo that means you're getting a bass-heavy dose of Beats Audio. In the Envy's case, that means dual speakers and a subwoofer for some extra grunt. A brief clip of some audio sounded pretty good for a laptop, though it's hard to judge accurately in the noisy environs of a conference centre, surrounded by baying tech journos.

HP Envy Sleekbook hands-on - specs

Variety is the spice of life – and the Envy is very spicy indeed, coming in Intel Ultrabook and AMD Sleekbook flavours. The 15.6in Sleekbook model we saw packed in AMD's second generation Mainstream APU - and while the exact specs are under wraps for the time being, we'll be giving it a full review in due course to see how it stacks up against its Intel rival. HP claims a battery life of nine hours for the AMD model versus eight hours for the Intel Ultrabook version.

HP Envy Sleekbook hands on review - HP Envy Sleekbook hands-on - specs 2

It comes with 4GB RAM as standard, though the model we handled packed in a whopping 8GB. It was also spinning a 500GB HDD, though the Envy Sleekbook is available in different configurations starting at 320GB.

Round the side, the Envy Sleekbook sports two USB 3.0 ports, along with a single USB 2.0 port, a gigabit ethernet port and SD card slot and HDMI port – all fairly standard stuff.

Like the Spectre XT, the Envy Sleekbook's screen clocks in at a resolution of 1366x768, though it comes in 14in and 15in flavours. Sitting pretty above it is a TrueVision HD webcam, to ensure that your every wrinkle and blemish is rendered in high definition on Skype.

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