HP Compaq 2510p Review

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  1. Andrew Baxter

    Andrew Baxter - Super Moderator

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    <!-- Generated by XStandard version 1.7.1.0 on 2007-08-27T13:31:27 -->

    The HP Compaq 2510p is a 12.1&quot; screen ultraportable notebook designed for business people that are frequently on the go. The Compaq 2510p replaces the older nc2400 ultraportable offering from HP. The 2510p improves upon the nc2400 by offering a touchpad, LED backlit display, the Intel Santa Rosa platform and a fresh new design look.


    [​IMG]
    (view large image)

    Overview

    If you recall back to late May of 2007 when HP released its entire new business notebook lineup, we discovered the new naming convention for business notebooks to have the following classification based on number grouping:

    • Ultra-Light (2000)
    • Balanced Mobility (6000)
    • High Performance (8000).

    While the letter designations at the end of a model number indicate the following:

    • s = standard
    • b = business
    • p = professional
    • w = workstation

    So by this formula the 2510p is classified as an ultra-light professional level notebook. The &quot;professional&quot; connotation means that you'll get a slightly stronger build than a consumer notebook, more security features, less bloatware, better technical support and a finish that's more appropriate for a business environment.

    The Compaq 2510p starts at a price of around $1,549 from the HP.com business store and can be configured in various manners, though being an ultraportable you are somewhat limited in processor choice -- you can choose between the Intel U7500 or U7600 ultra low voltage processor. Integrated graphics is the only choice you'll have and the hard drive is a slowish 1.8&quot; 4200RPM variety, so there's no path to a super duper performance system. Rumor has it SSD might show up as an option at some point for this machine though.

    The performance isn't really what you're looking for in an ultraportable though. It's the utility factor and how capable it is for on the go work that matters with such a machine. The integrated optical drive, light weight, great screen, nice keyboard and overall good design will serve therefore serve as a focus in this review.

    HP 2510p Specs as Reviewed:

    • Intel Core 2 Duo U7600 1.20GHz Ultra Low Voltage processor
    • Chipset: Mobile Intel GM965
    • Memory: 2GB DDR2 SDRAM, one user accessible slot
    • Hard Drive: 1.8-in PATA 100GB 4200RPM
    • Graphics: Intel GMA X3100
    • Wireless: Intel 802.11a/b/g/n, Bluetooth (built-in WWAN is an option through Verizon or AT&amp;T in the U.S.)
    • Communications: Intel Gigabit Network Connection
    • Expansion Slots: 1 Type I/II PC Card slot, Secure Digital slot
    • Ports: 2 USB 2.0 ports, VGA, stereo microphone in, stereo headphone/line out, FireWire, power jack, RJ-11 modelm, RJ-45 ethernet, docking connector for HP 2400/2500 ultra-light docking station
    • Input: Full-sized ekyboard, dual pointing device
    • Dimensions: (h x w x d) 0.97-in x 11.11 in x 8.38 in
    • Weight: starting at 3.2lbs
    • Power: 9-cell (83 WHr), 6-cell (55 WHr) or 3-cell (28 WHr)
    • Warranty: 3-year limited, 1-year on battery

    Design

    [​IMG]
    (view large image)

    The HP Compaq 2510p looks like a mini-me version of the larger 6510b (14&quot;) and 8510p (15&quot;) business notebooks. HP uses the same design across its line of business notebooks, which is a good thing, they've standardized on a professional yet stylish bluish-silver metallic lid with black trim on the inside that should appeal to just about anyone. The front corners are slightly rounded to give a nice smooth look and to avoid any sharp edges from poking you.

    The LED lights on the front right side of the 2510p help to give it an added stylish look, and above the keyboard there are light-up touch sensitive controls that look more elegant and futuristic than a regular old push button. The smoothly integrated touchpad provides a nice clean look as well. The keyboard and screen bezel are a matte black color, this provides a fine look as well as making sure dirt and fingerprints don't show up.

    Build

    The overall build quality of the HP 2510p is very good. A latch is used to hold the screen down when stowed, I really like the rubber gripped latch opener because it's easy to feel and find without looking down at the notebook and easy to operate. There's no fiddling to open the screen.

    The lid of the notebook is constructed of a firm mag-alloy material and will endure the bumps of the road. When the back of the lid is pushed on no screen ripples appear, indicating that the protection is quite adequate. The same mag alloy material is used on the palm rests area which makes sure this area is sturdy and doesn't sink under the weight of your hands. The keyboard is also firm with absolutely no mushiness or sink to it.

    [​IMG]
    The 2510p has an integrated optical drive, quite rare for ultraportables (view large image)

    The hard drive is shock mounted for protection, though there is no fancy accelerometer like ThinkPads have that lifts the hard drive head in the event of a drop. The entire bottom of the laptop is as sturdy as the lid with little flex to it, so your protection there should be good. Overall the 2510p is a very well built and solid feeling little laptop.

    [​IMG]
    A look at the under side of the notebook (view large image)

    Travelling - Weight and Battery Life

    While using the Compaq 2510p I had the opportunity to take it on some travels, which is what an ultraportable is designed to do. The 2510p was used on a 4-hour train ride between Boston and New York and on a plane trip I took between Cincinnati and New York. Even though my regular 14-inch screen laptop weighs a fairly light 5lbs, it was so nice to have a laptop that had a weight of just over 3lbs, I could hardly tell it was in my backpack as it weighs less than some textbooks. The real miracle with the 2510p is that it has an integrated optical drive -- something I really prefer to have that a majority of ultraportables leave out. I weighed the 2510p using a scale and below are the readings for various weight configurations:

    HP 2510p ConfigurationWeight
    With 3-cell battery3.22 lbs
    With 6-cell battery3.56 lbs
    With 3-cell battery and power adapter + cord4.06 lbs
    With 6-cell battery and power adapter + cord 4.40 lbs


    You can configure the 2510p with integrated Verizon or AT&amp;T broadband access. I can attest that on the train you can actually stay connected 90% of the time if you're travelling on the East coast of the U.S. at least. Pretty cool! It allowed me to crank out some work I couldn't have done without being connected.

    When I wasn't doing work, I had a DVD from Netflix that I had just received and wanted to watch, and having the integrated optical drive (DVD +/- RW) made that easy. Yes, I know you can convert media and put it on your hard drive for viewing, but when time is a premium then it's much less hassle to just have a disc you can pop-in to the machine itself.

    [​IMG]
    Above is an image of the 2510p with the 6-cell battery in, you can see it protrudes from the back (view large image)

    I had two different batteries for the 2510p, a small 3-cell battery and a larger sized 6-cell that sticks out of the back of the notebook. The larger battery adds more life at the cost of additional weight. I'm willing to carry a bit more weight for the extra battery life, it's always nice to have both types of batteries so you can pick your &quot;weapon of choice&quot; depending on the situation. Using the 3-cell battery with wi-fi on and screen brightness at half I got 3 hours and 10 minutes of usage. With the 6-cell battery with wi-fi on and screen brightness at half I got 6 hours and 20 minutes of usage. Extrapolate the results and you would expect the high capacity 9-cell battery to give you about 9 hours of battery life. Quite amazing.

    Input and Output Ports

    The Compaq 2510p has everything you really need and would expect to find in an ultraportable. Below is a picture tour of what you get on each side.

    Front side:

    On the front you simply have a latch for opening the screen up. The LED light indicators can be seen on the left side.

    [​IMG]
    (view large image)

    Left side:

    On the left side of the notebook are located a power jack, modem port and powered USB port. You also see the optical drive, a DVD SuperMulti in this case. Very nice to have in an ultraportable.

    [​IMG]
    (view large image)

    &#160;

    Right side:

    On the right side of the notebook is a PC card slot, SD card reader, FireWire port, headphone jack, microphone in, USB port, monitor out port and then an expansion dock connector.

    [​IMG]
    (view large image)

    &#160;

    Back:

    On the back of the notebook we just have the Ethernet port and a Kensington lock slot.

    [​IMG]
    (view large image)

    &#160;

    If that selection of ports is not enough for you when on the go, then HP offers a docking station so you have more options when at your desk. The docking station includes two extra USB ports, audio out, mouse connector, parallel port, DVI, modem jack, Ethernet jack, monitor out, Serial port, keyboard connector, audio-in jack, composite video port and S-video jack.

    Heat and Noise

    The Compaq 2510p is mostly quiet in terms of fan noise, in fact in my time with the 2510p I never noticed the fans rev up to full speed except for when booting up. The Intel ULV processor certainly helps in regards to keeping overall system temperatures fairly low and the fan mostly unnecessary. The hard drive actually turned out to be louder than the fans, when it's working hard you can hear it clicking away. There was a mild electric buzz that could be heard emitting from the machine, but only if you put your head down next to it and truly listened for such a noise.

    There is some heat buildup that occurs on the system to the extent you can feel a temperature difference among certain areas. In particular the right palm rest got quite a bit warmer than the left, but not to the point it was uncomfortable. Below are graphics of temperatures (in degrees Fahrenheit) measured in each area of the notebook:

    [​IMG]
    The temperatue on the right palm rest was warmer than the left (view large image)

    &#160;

    The under side of the notebook on the back right side also got quite warm after the system had been on for a time.

    [​IMG]
    (view large image)

    The temperatures you see diagrammed above are all quite normal and nothing that will feel more than just a bit warm to the touch when against the skin.

    Processor and Performance

    The HP 2510p uses an Intel ULV processor and integrated graphics, this is important because due to the tight space inside an ultraportable it's hard to dissipate heat, so a lower powered processor and graphics chipset really helps to keep the heat down. The disadvantage is of course you won't get the break neck performance speed you can cram into larger laptops. However, for the typical business person a 1.20GHz Intel U7600 processor will be just fine for email, web browsing, Office applications and whatever CRM application your company might be using. I personally used the 2510p for writing this review, some light web development using Visual Studio, lots of web browsing and running benchmark applications. The system was always responsive and generally free of lag.

    Super Pi

    SuperPi is a tool to measure relative CPU performance, it forces the processor to calculate Pi to 2-million digits of accuracy in our case.&#160; As you can see the U7600 inside the 2510p isn't the fastest, but it beats older Pentium M systems.

    NotebookTime
    HP Compaq 2510p (1.2GHz Core 2 Duo U7600)1m 49s
    ThinkPad X61s (1.6GHz Core 2 Duo L7500)1m 08s
    ThinkPad X61 (2.0GHz Core 2 Duo T7300)1m 01s
    Macbook Pro (2.4GHz Core 2 Duo T7700)53s
    HP 6515b (1.6GHz Turion64 X2 TL-52)2m 05s
    ThinkPad T42 (1.8GHz Pentium M 745)1m 58s
    Sony TX850p (1.2GHz Core Solo U1400)1m 22s
    Dell Latitude D420 (1.2GHz Core Duo U2500)1m 57s
    PortableOne UX (2.0GHz Core 2 Duo T7200)1m 04s
    HP dv5000z (2.0GHz Sempron 3300+)2m 02s
    ThinkPad R60 (1.66GHz Core Duo T2300e)1m 26s
    Lenovo C100 (1.5GHz Celeron M)2m 19s
    VAIO S380 (1.86 GHz Pentium M 740)1m 45s

    &#160;

    PCMark05

    PCMark05 is a benchmarking software application which measures overall system performance.&#160; The Compaq 2510p performed in line with other ultraportables, but of course fell short of scores from notebooks that have a regularly powered processor.

    NotebookPCMark05 Score
    HP Compaq 2510p (1.20GHz Intel U7600, Intel X3100)2,339 PCMarks
    Sony VAIO TZ90HS (1.2GHz Core 2 Duo ULV U7600)2,517 PCMarks
    Fujitsu LifeBook P7230 (Core Solo CPU U1400, 1.20GHz, Integrated graphics)1,152 PCMarks
    ThinkPad R60 (1.66 GHz Core Duo, Intel 950)2,975 PCMarks
    Fujitsu HP Compaq 2510p is definitely a strong option in the ultraportable category. It improves on the previous Compaq nc2400 by offering a built-in optical drive while still keeping the weight about the same. The 2510p has a solid build and professional look. While it may not be as flashy as the competing Toshiba R500 or Sony VAIO TZ in terms of design, I think business people might prefer what I consider better usability, more durable build and more mature security and software suite the HP 2510p provides. The notebook isn't perfect, the pointing stick issue and average display brightness that doesn't live up to the &quot;illumi-lite&quot; billing that would lead you to expect a blazing bright display is dissapointing. I'd love to see SSD offered to boost performance over the standard 1.8&quot; hard drive as well. Outside of that the HP 2510p is close to being a home-run for all the features it offers in such a small package, I'd certainly be happy to have it as a permanent travel companion![/p]

    Pros

    • Integrated optical drive in a package just over 3lbs
    • Quality build, will be able to take the beating of typical business travel
    • Very good battery life
    • Good keyboard, comfortable to use despite small system size
    • Professional and stylish look
    • Offers every type of wireless, including built-in WWAN, a business user could want

    Cons

    • Issues with using the pointing stick in conjunction with a mouse click
    • Poor speaker
    • Slow hard drive performance
    • Right palm rest gets warm

    &#160;

     
    Last edited by a moderator: May 8, 2015
  2. JabbaJabba

    JabbaJabba ThinkPad Facilitator

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    Thanks for the nice review Andrew. Good to finally read a review of the 2510p. By the looks of it is quite a nice ultraportable.
     
  3. queshy

    queshy Notebook Deity NBR Reviewer

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    wow, I really like this laptop a lot!

    I used to not really like the x61 because of the lack of an optical drive, but this pretty much solves that problem imo.

    nicely done review, Andrew!
     
  4. WashWest

    WashWest Notebook Consultant NBR Reviewer

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    Great review. I love the temperature measurements in the photo - very cool.

    One correction: the nc2400 does have a built-in optical drive. (Are you thinking of the nc4400?) The 2510p adds a touchpad, however.
     
  5. John Ratsey

    John Ratsey Moderately inquisitive Super Moderator

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    Nice review.

    The battery life is impressive, no doubt helped by the low voltage CPU. However, it also suggests that the X3100 graphics can be very economical on power

    John
     
  6. lukealexander

    lukealexander Notebook Evangelist NBR Reviewer

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    It is a pity more manufacturers don't use ULV processors... the effect on battery life is clear to see.
     
  7. Andrew Baxter

    Andrew Baxter - Super Moderator

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    Ooh, nice catch, for some reason my brain was telling me the nc2400 came without an optical drive but you're right, it does. Thanks for the correction, I adusted the review!
     
  8. liquid.ice0

    liquid.ice0 Notebook Geek

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    the temperature measurements in the photos are great. If more reviews include this, we'll have an objective way to answer "how hot does it get?" (as long as the enviornment is controlled, room temp, surface type, and system load when measurements are taken.)
    What did you use to take the measurements?
     
  9. houzy

    houzy Newbie

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    Thanks for the review Andrew. I really appreciate the graphic of temperatures. It's very useful.

    On the specs for the laptop you comment I read: "Hard Drive: 1.8-in PATA 100GB 4200RPM", but on the HDTune picture, I see the hard disk model is MK8009GAH (80GB). What's the right one, 80GB o 100GB?

    Thanks again.
     
  10. MysticGolem

    MysticGolem Asus MVP + NBR Reviewer NBR Reviewer

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    Simply Amazing!!!! Very nice review, and I agree with liquid ice, what tool did you use to get the temps? A thermometer? hmm I got one of those somewhere?

    Battery life!!!! WOW! So what the CPU is slightly slower than normal, we all know the Hard drive is the slowest component in all notebooks and desktops. I wish there were more notebooks using this processor and X3100 integrated card.

    I wouldn't mind getting a 14" portable notebook with a great screen, 6 cell battery not sticking out , X3100, and amazing battery life with an array of ports. :D (all for 1500 CAD or less)

    Thanks for the review Andrew, if you don't mind using NHC and posting the discharge rate that would be nice, i bet it was somewhere around 10-12 watts per hour!! Which is really low. :D

    Thanks,

    MysticGolem
     
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