HP Envy 6 Sleekbook review – intro
What do you call an Ultrabook that isn't an Ultrabook? - According to HP it's a Sleekbook - at least that's the name it's given to this skinny laptop which runs on an AMD rather than Intel processor.
HP Envy 6 Sleekbook review – AMD vs Intel
So what does that mean for you, the proud owner of a new Envy 6? Well Intel's Ivy Bridge-based Core i5s are better at traditional processing and multitasking, while AMD's A6-4455M 'Trinity' chip has more powerful Radeon graphics which will speed up photo and video editing and make games fly. Oh, and they're £100 cheaper.
HP Envy 6 Sleekbook review – performance and battery life
That goes some way to explaining how HP's made a thin and light 15-incher for just £550. Some cost-cutting has clearly been done - it has a 500GB hard drive rather than a faster SSD, for instance - but it's one of the best made machines at that price, with one the most comfortable keyboards, and a decent 6 hour battery.
HP Envy 6 Sleekbook review – design
HP's styling stands out in a world of uniform grey, and the Sleekbook's metal lid combined with soft rubberised bottom is a distinctive look that would grace laptops costing three times as much.
HP Envy 6 Sleekbook review – screen
The extra screen space does come with a couple of drawbacks, though. For starters, the Envy 6 is heavy for a skinny laptop. More crucially, its resolution suffers, with its 1366x768 pixel count spread over a larger area than on its 13in rivals. That's a shame, but given its price this is a forgivable flaw. All in all, this is an excellent laptop.
HP Envy 6 Sleekbook review – bring the noise
The fan on the Envy 6 never seems to turn off completely, and as a result is always audible. It's never as obnoxious as the worst we've used from the likes of Sony, but it is a flaw in an otherwise impressive machine.
HP Envy 6 Sleekbook review – Beats Audio
Don't be fooled by the HP Envy 6 Sleekbook's Beats Audio branding: the speakers on the Envy 6 aren't noticeably better than on any other Ultrabook. Not good, would be our general description.
HP Envy 6 Sleekbook review – web verdict
AMD Trinity processors power this Ultrabook alliterative, making it cheaper and more battery-filled. The Envy 6 has a quality metal lid and rubberised base, 15.6 in screen, and it's 6GB RAM gives faster boot times on its 500GB hard drive than a similar Intel Core i3. Maybe not the sleekest we’ve used but still an excellent, great value laptop.