*HP Envy 15 Owners Lounge! PART 1*

Discussion in 'HP' started by Serg, Oct 21, 2009.

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  1. Serg

    Serg Nowhere - Everywhere

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    WARNING: Could be a little heavy to load

    Hi there fellow owners and prospective owners! Welcome to the HP Envy 15 Owners Lounge!

    Feel free to join the discussion and post. And remember, you make the thread, I simply keep it organized up front. Send me a Private Message (PM) if you want me to add something in particular


    What are the informations we can collect here, basically:
    1. First Impressions
    2. Reviews
    3. Pictures
    4. Benchmarks
    5. Screenshots
    6. Information

    Basically to sum up all we have on this to help buyers make the decision or not.

    I will constantly update the first posts with info provided by users and links you send me.



    UPDATE 01/12/2009:
    BIOS UPDATE F.06 to be found here:
    HP Official Website



    UPDATE 17/12/2009
    New BIOS update to F.07
    BIOS F/07 Info
    BIOS F.07 direct download



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    UPDATE 24/11/2009
    OFFICIAL statement from the HP ENVY Team over at TheBench.com about the Horizontal Lines:

    "Just to let you know - we take everything posted here pretty seriously. FredFrenzy and I take back what's posted here, back to the product and systems team and dig for answers. So thank you for taking the time to post.

    There is a BIOS update due out this week F.06 - and the team has said that should fix the issue. However this is not verified - so I don't want to get people's hopes up prematurely.

    Also I do know that a system returned for this issue was sent back to the systems team for investigation."

    Thanks to lugnut for this info




    [​IMG]

    For now, if you are looking for the standard Envy 15 go here.

    [​IMG]

    And if you are looking at the Envy 15 BEATS Edition, here..

    So, any thoughts, comments, topic-related with the Envy 15, feel free to post it here. And welcome to the NBR Forums for the newcomers!



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    UPDATE: 11/11/09
    The Envy 15 is now shipping with dual 1.8" drives.

    Choices:
    500GB 7200RPM SATA Hard Drive with HP ProtectSmart Hard Drive Protection
    410GB 5400RPM SATA Dual Hard Drive (SSD 160GB + 250GB 5400RPM)
    320GB Dual Solid State Drive Flash Modules (SSD 160GB + SSD 160GB)

    Source from: HPDirect.



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    Internal Components and distribution of parts inside the Envy 15
    [​IMG][​IMG][​IMG][​IMG][​IMG]
    [​IMG][​IMG][​IMG][​IMG][​IMG]



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    Handy Tools and Accessories
    Intel Turbo Boost Technology Monitor is a simple display utility which operates within the built in OS feature of Windows Sidebar to show increase in the processor frequency when applications request more performance.

    HP HDMI to VGA Adapter Converts the HDMI output port on your ENVY to an analog VGA input with the HP HDMI to VGA Conversion Adapter. It supports full-size high-definition resolution of 720p or 1080p.



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    Useful Tools to Benchmark your laptop:

    Post your results here if you want, or better yet, post them and send me a copy of them so I can upload them here if you want.
    CPU Z for CPU information
    GPU Z for GPU information
    HWMonitor for temps information
    Futuremark for overall benchmarks
    PC Mark Vantage gives results on the system, but offers better results on Vista.
    PC Mark 05 more benchmark tools
    HDTune for the HDD is a good way to measure its performance
    3DMark Vantage for 3D GPU performance
    Core Temp for checking your CPU temps
    RMClock to be in control of you CPU
    Battery Eater to test and know the maximum and minimum battery runtime.



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    Useful Links
    Envy 15 Dual HDD Answer by wlcheng
    HP Software and Drivers Downloads
    HP Accessories
    Envy 15 Support
    Latest Drivers: HP Envy 15 by justinkw1
    Vista and Windows 7 Self Diagnostics by DetlevCM
    Did HP fail you?
    HP Optimization Guide by v3loc1ty2.0
    Manual of the Envy 15 (PDF)
    New Synaptics Drivers:
    Running Linux on HP Envy 15 by HP Forum
     
    Last edited by a moderator: May 8, 2015
  2. Serg

    Serg Nowhere - Everywhere

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    First Impressions of HP Envy 15
    Give credits (rep) to proper author please. Thanks!
    PM me or post yours to be updated here.



    By iTBaggedUrMac [HP Envy 15 BEATS Edition]

    Initial Impressions:

    The card slot with the trap door is very cool. I haven't seen a laptop with that style card reader before.

    The rubber on the bottom of the Blue-Ray Drive is very nice.

    I would like to have that covering the bottom of the laptop(with vents in the proper places of course). I am sure it would add some weight but, there is no doubt that a cooling pad or at least a piece of balsa wood will have to travel with this notebook to insulate my important parts.

    The weight of the Envy should not be a deciding factor for purchase considering all of the extra stuff you'll have to lug around.

    Five gripes so far with the Envy:

    1. There are already some LEDs in the keyboard... Why is it so hard to just illuminate all the keys as well?... I mean, why can't I get some sharks with laser beams attached to their heads?

    2. I realize that some don't care for/about the E2E screen but it would really make this notebook look much better and be easier to clean. There is already some visible dust in the edge of the bezel, annoying on a glossy screen to me. If it had a matte screen, I wouldn't care.

    3. When I place my right palm on the palmrest the notebook has a slight give and makes a creaking noise. The deflection in the palmrest is not visible. I hope the creaking goes away.

    4. The 2 finger scrolling is a step backward in functionality/efficiency. Being able to use one finger is much quicker and easier. Maybe there is an advantage to this but I fail to see it yet. I haven't checked the settings to see if single finger scrolling is an option.

    5. Power Brick is really big! Luckily my retractable Kensington Slim 120W is about halfthe size. I just need to find the proper tip.

    One more thing... This i7-820QM notebook is far too warm to use in my lap while lying in bed browsing the web. The hottest spot is in the worst possible place, right under the trackpad. It only took about 10 minutes before I had to grab the cooling pad, much hotter than the 17" MSI GT725 was. I will get some exact temps later on.




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    [b]Follow-Up Experience[/b] by [i]iTBaggedUrMac[/i]

    The Envy has really cooled down. It is very strange. Maybe it is because I have installed the SSD and uninstalled almost everything except the drivers or maybe there is a "burn in" period for the heat transfer paste on the CPU. Uninstalling everything unnecessary may have caused less load on the CPU hence less heat. I should have taken a screenshot of the processes before and after the cleanup and SSD install.

    I am at a loss of words for how much of an improvement this trackpad is over any other I have used. It is simply a pleasure.

    The keyboard, although not illuminated, is nothing short of fantastic. It is solid with plenty of feedback. Keyspacing is nearly perfect for my paws. I personally like the reversed function keys. I don't mind using Fn when I need a F# key. This has made operating the Envy more efficient for me.

    The Envy's 1080p screen is beautiful. Luckily I have no visible lines as others have found. If you wear glasses don't expect to take them off while using the Envy. The text is very small. Thankfully, I don't wear glasses and I would not want the text any smaller. Win7 scales nicely so it should be ok none the less.



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    By [i]HardBall[/i]


    [b]Introduction[/b]

    I've finally had a little time to play around with this machine; I'll reserve my final judgement until a little time passes, and the BIOS and linux drivers issues get sorted out. Almost no laptop comes with perfect Linux support out of the gate, but things invariably improve with time, and I've owned somewhere around 20 laptops in the last 6-7 years, and have used some distro of Linux on all of them; so I suggest that everyone who's going to load Linux onto this machine wait a little to see how things shake out.

    That's going to be my primary OS anyways; but here is my brief impression so far:

    [b]Exterior and Build quality[/b]

    The exterior of the laptop is much more tamed in appearance than I imagined, the pattern is classy and not a bit flamboyant, and is only obvious in very good lighting conditions

    The etched surfaces are supposed to be scratch resistent, although I have some doubt about that; most of the aluminum macbook pros I see have a number of small scratches all over the surface; that may be indemic for systems with certain types of metal surface. Only time will tell on this one.

    The construction is very solid. Pretty close to the rigidity seen in the unibody MacBook Pros (not quite, but close); and more so than any ThinkPads or Latitudes that I have used before, which were very reliable machines in their own right. This bodes well for the longevity of the components

    The ports location is a bit odd; I'm glad I'm ambitextrous, and generally use a left handed mouse. I can see that how this could be a problem for a righty; in that case, better load up on the bluetooth devices instead.


    [b]Physical characteristics[/b]

    This notebook is very very light, compared to my previous systems; definitely lighter than the 14" T60 that I use right now, and is very easy to carry in hand, if you are used to the normal weight of 14-15 inch laptops in your hand.

    This is also my first 16:9 laptop, which is more skewed than I thought it would be. It will take some time to get used to it. I would have preferred 16:10, but 1080 pixels vertical definitely would be sufficient in most circumstances. The form factor is slightly harder to carry with one hand, I found, but just another area that I have to be acclimated to. The screen the brightest one I have used, a day to night compared to all my recent laptops that I've used (T60, X31, Latitude D820, Inspiron 9400, Gateway 7405, etc). It is brighter than any desktop LCD that I have used as well, including a 2008 20" iMac, and the 24" Westinghouse on my desktop. One thing is that the screen is slightly bluish compared to other current laptop and stand alone LCDs that I own; not a big problem, unless you need very accurate gamut for GIMP or photoshop.


    [b]Performance and heat[/b]

    Haven't done much benchmarking yet, but needless to say it hasn't run into any glitches at all in terms of performance. We will really see how the core i7-720QM accompanied by the 4830HD will perform when I get to do some 3D benches. I will also try to run some of my own compiled code to see how it compares to a standard C2D or Phenom setup.

    Heat, what heat? At least since I haven't been pushing it hard, the heat issue is non-existent. After running for 1 hr, it gets barely warm at all, still much less so than my T60 on the palm rest. Underside is a little warmer, but nothing that I don't expect from a laptop with metal chassis, cooler than my old D820 on the bottom under light use.

    Fan noise is a little noticeable in a quiet room, but most likely when there is some other ambiant sound (other significant noise, music, movie, etc).
    Speakers are quite good for a laptop, on par with the built in speakers on my 24" westinghouse; so nothing earth shattering, but fine for normal use without external speakers.


    [b]What I disliked[/b]

    I agree with some here, the trackpad is probably the worst I have used in a long time. Clicks don't always register, has problem with accidentally touching a different part of the pad during clicks, which would cause the cursor to jump wildly. The buttons don't have good feedback, definitely inferior to physically separate buttons. I strongly recommend an external mouse for this one. Gesture software is atrocious, almost nothing works correctly with high reliability. Two finger scroll only works in very precise orientations of the fingers, rotations don't register half the time, zooming is also hit and miss; I'm not even sure why they put out such a half-baked piece of software on this new system.

    Yes, the screen tilt is a bit limiting, sort of making using it on the lap slightly restrictive in terms of the user's posture. This is nothing too terrible, and definitely something you can live with and work around, but still a minor annoyance.


    [b]Conclusion[/b]

    Yet to come.

    By [i]HardBall[/i]



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    By [i]RifterAD[/i]

    [b]Introduction[/b]

    After using my Envy for a a few hours last night and today, I must say that I'm a lot more impressed that I thought I would be.

    For now, my only super minor gripes are that the screen doesn't open far enough and the lack of a back-lit keyboard. That's it. Thankfully I have a BB around here that carries one of these and I was able to see that the screen is amazing and the viewing angles are far better than average which overcomes the screen opening issue.

    As of right now, this thing is very snappy...I love it! Although there isn't that much bloatware (which is surprising in itself), there is still enough. Once my SSD arrives, it's going to be so much better. I haven't run any tests since I've been updating and installing stuff, but I'll get there.


    [B]Initial Impressions[/B]

    - As I said, the screen is beautiful. I stuck with the Dell Studio XPS 16 order for so long because I wanted a good screen and Sony didn't come out with a i7 laptop yet. If I had not seen this screen in person, I would still be waiting for the Dell...This screen really is great.

    - This laptop is not even close to being too hot for everyday stuff (watching videos/pictures, streaming stuff, browsing the internet wirelessly). The slice is still cool in some areas! The ASUS was warmer than this one is. Of course, I'm only talking about the above stuff...not gaming, etc.

    - So far I have not had issues with my slice disconnecting, but I have been feeling the edges of it a lot to make sure it doesn't slowly start shifting. I don't keep my laptop on a desk that much, so the laptop is constantly moving. This is probably going to be my biggest concern while I own this laptop.

    - It is heavier than I thought it would be when the slice is attached, but I doubt I'll keep the slice attached while around the house, just use it while out on trips.

    - As I said before, this thing is amazingly fast. Can't wait to load a few games and other programs to really test it out. But everyday use is still a wow!

    -The chassis is amazing! It looks great...subtle, yet it also stands out (not like a gaming rig usually does). I love how thin it is even with the slice!

    - I like that it doesn't have a optical drive. My ASUS had a removable bay and most of the time I would left the secondary battery in the bay instead of the DVD drive.

    - I like the external drive. Sleek looking and has the added USB ports when needed. For me, it was a bonus since I have an old laptop drive that I could have slapped into a new external drive...but not with this style and functionality! ;)

    - The Keyboard is extremely nice to type on! I used to think that the Dell's keys were a bit mooshy to type on but the Envy's are perfect though.

    - I, for one, like the extra buttons on the left... To each his own i guess. I also like how the media keys are the focus instead of the F# keys.

    - I immediately installed the new touchpad drivers, so I can't comment on any improvements, but I do like the new functions a lot. Although I did select the 1 finger scrolling (while keeping the 2 finger scrolling also checked...I will make an attempt to try it out for a bit).

    - Even though the E2E looks very nice on the 13 and the Dell (plus, it is a heck of a lot easier to clean), I really don't mind the omission of E2E. Although I doubt it saved much weight to warrant a change in design, this design came out very nice. (Thankfully, I don't have those tiny scratches on the bezel...yet).


    [B]UPDATE 26/11/2009:[/B]
    I just ran 3DMark06 with updated drivers and stock HP/W7 install at the default 1280x1024 resolution and the results where the following:
    SM 2.0: 3088
    SM 3.0: 3237
    CPU: 2997
    [U]3DMark06: 7841[/U]



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    by [i]Serg[/i]


    [indent][b]Introduction[/b][/indent]

    I started looking for a laptop a year ago, and I found these Forums where I could ask around, so I joined. As time passed I learnt a lot and my decisions and budget changed over time, so when it was finally the time to pull the trigger, I did it on the Dell Studio XPS 1645. The next day the Envy 15 was announced officially and launched. Needless to say that the smaller body, better GPU, similar price and beautiful design caught me as soon as I saw the laptop. So Dell was cancelled and HP was preferred.

    The Envy was delivered on time, to the US location, unfortunately I am France-based, so I had to wait until it got here with a relative. This happened a few days ago only, so I am just starting to set this up and enjoy my new laptop.


    [indent][b]Initial Impressions[/b][/indent]

    The laptop is just beautiful, I would say is one of the most sexy laptops around and the pattern makes it even better, it is not even noticeable unless you have a 45 degree angle or more pointing at it, then it becomes obvious.

    This thing is big. I mean it is wide. The thinness is unbelievable but the wideness surprised me when I was packing back from Paris to my city, I had problems fitting my laptop as it was a little to wide for the backpack, I thing I am going to find a case for it...the thinness has me amazed, I cant believe it yet, since I am used to a chunkier laptop...

    As I did an initial inspection, I noticed the weight of the laptop, is for me almost non-existent. Unfortunately the 1 Kilo (weighted) PSU is not very friendly to this lightness concept...such a shame.

    The mobility concept of this laptop is based on the PSU in fact. I think they meant as when plugged. They cord is very long, so I have quite some freedom with the laptop plugged in. But the moment I need to carry the PSU, dang that thing can be a brick...I find it to be twice as large as my Dell PSU. (PSU stands for Power Supply Unit)

    As fire up, the first time it was quite sluggish. I blame the bloatware. Starting with 94 processes as a first turn on is a bad idea. It was slowing me down by a lot. I removed all that bloatware, flashed the Bios to the F.06, updated all drivers, defragmented my HDD, ran CCleaner and restarted my laptop. My temps dropped from scorching hot the first time to barely lukewarm. The CPU went from 63C to 48C when idling. Albeit not ideal, it is a lot better. Right now the laptop is very fast, and under one minute I get to restart the laptop and be back online. It took me 3 minutes to do a full system restore and be back online, so that is fast. (bad old XP drivers being non-compatible with Win7)

    The screen is beautiful. No lines, no problems, very bright and crisp, colors seem quite good, and the resolution was love at first sight. Now I cant watch my old WXGA monitor without thinking that looks bigger and squarer. This thing is very bright for me, I am using it at around 40% brightness...

    The webcam has not given me any issues. It is color accurate and very fast and clear. Already tested it using Skype Professional and Windows Live Messenger. Both times it worked very good. Under low light it becomes black and white, but still works. Have not noted a bluish tint yet.

    The keyboard is quite tricky. I keep missing keys. Besides Apples MacBooks and Pros, this is the first PC chiclet style keyboard I use. The feedback is very nice and the extra row is quite useful, yet I keep missing the keys...I hope it is a matter of getting used to it (I am a touch typist).

    The clickpad, although not as nice as the MBP on functionalities, the surface is very good to the touch, and the multi-gesture is very responsive. I tested it with other Apple users and no complaints whatsoever about the functions. The only tricky one is the 3 fingers down to open Safari (I set that).

    Fans are always on. With music or some background they are not loud, but you can hear them still, not bothering, but present. Components on this thing need to be keep cool...so I think I can live with this.

    I am always listening to music. The speakers have a strange disposition. I am an audiophile. This are not the best speakers, but for a laptop the range is above average, and I get some mids and some bass. They are very clear, but still cant fight a good old pair of earphones.

    I am forgetting about the right click. It is not my type of click. Is there another way to configure it using gestures? I like RTS games and the right click is essential there, and this one is not the best for that.

    The reversed FN keys are useful yes, but still have some mixed feelings about it. When gaming or working it is a pain since I use F1-F12 a lot when browsing or working.

    Today I have scheduled to instal CATIA V5 R19 in here, will report back on performance. Some light games will be installed in the future and I will report back on this matter, but overall as speed goes this thing is fast.


    [indent][b]Conclussion[/b][/indent]

    This is a very nice laptop. Still needs to be tested here, and I shall update on performance and write the full review in these days to come. Would I suggest it? Yes. But there are things to be worked out yet...hopefully HP is working hard on this.



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    by [i]Rolf_S[/i]

    I just bought the Envy 15 (european model) yesterday.

    I was actually looking for another notebook, but they didn't have that in store, so I thought "what the H" and used too much money :D

    Spent the remainder of the day removing junk software (sigh!)


    [B]My first impressions:
    [/B]
    "Highend" impression from the lavish packaging. I've always hated that stuff, since I find it more difficult to throw out than regular brown boxes ;)

    Love the external DVD drive. They are going the way Floppy drives did.

    The SD card was a nice touch (a higher capacity card with the re-install would have been double plus good...)

    I was surprised by the metal housing, and I dig the pattern they put on it.

    Grey is a little boring though (as boring as Macs.. But I guess people find it high-tech and stylish (how 90'ish)

    The screen is good and colorful and the keyboard has a good response. Takes a bit to get used to them though. In one of the reviews, someone ed about the lefthand shortcut keys being in the way when touchtyping ?! They're not - perhaps she had weird extra fingers or something.

    I've never like touchpads, but this one I can actually use... I had a really crappy one before, so anything would be better for me :)

    Power brick is huuuge ! But has no highpitched whine as poor quality ones can have.
    __

    It's great for cold hands in the winter ! It certainly runs pretty hot : CPU 40 Celsius when surfing and light use, to a whopping 70+ when running L4D 2 !!
    Assembly temps stay around 40 though, which I guess means good fans. It also cools down quickly after heavy use - another indication of efficient cooling !

    This thing is fast. Really fast. No. I mean it - really really fast :-D

    Audio sounds very good.

    Lack of a microphone jack is a little weird - but I'll get over it ;-D

    ___

    After a little housekeeping, I'm down to about 38 running processes from the desktop. Which brings me to the MASSIVE useless junk HP installs !

    It takes forever to get rid of, and some of it de-installed incorrectly and is stuck in the control panel program thing. Grrr.
    ___

    All in all - this is an AWESOME little notebook. Fast, small, and... fast !



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    [B]External reviews on the laptop. Enjoy the read:
    [/B]
    [url="http://www.mobiletechreview.com/notebooks/HP-Envy-15.htm"]MobileTech Review on the Envy 15[/url]
    [URL="http://www.notebookcheck.net/Review-HP-Envy-15-Notebook.22272.0.html"]NotebookCheck full review on the Envy 15[/URL]
    [URL="http://www.pcmag.com/article2/0,2817,2355836,00.asp"]HP Envy 15 - Full review from PCMag[/URL]
    [URL="http://www.pocket-lint.com/review/4459/hp-envy-15-1060ea-review"]Pocket-Lint review of the Envy 15[/URL]
    [URL="http://www.laptopmag.com/review/laptop/hp-envy-15.aspx?page=1"]LaptopMag's Review of the Envy 15[/URL]
    [URL="http://www.pcpro.co.uk/reviews/laptops/353455/hp-envy-15"]Review of the Envy 15by PCPro[/URL]



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    [b]Details/Clarifications on the Envy 15[/b]

    [B]From HP Gaming Staff:[/B]
    The Envy 15 does [B]not[/B] have a flush glass like the Envy 13. Originally we had spec'd flush glass, but when we looked at the [B]extra weight[/B] that would add to the unit, we decided to go a [B]different direction[/B] . As screens get bigger, getting optically fused glass on a panel starts adding real weight.

    Source:
    [url]http://www.thenextbench.com/t5/HP-En...ons/td-p/49126[/url]



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    Last edited by a moderator: May 8, 2015
  3. Serg

    Serg Nowhere - Everywhere

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    Internal Review of the Envy 15
    Give credits (rep) to the proper owner. Thanks!
    PM me if you want yours to be updated here.



    -------------------------------------------------------------------------



    By Genryu

    Packaging and Design

    After opening up the all black matte finish envy box the first thing impression you're left with is that this is a high-end luxury product. I'll admit that was part of the appeal for me in getting the envy and they definitely put some work into making the presentation top notch. The included sleeve is also very nice and high quality. If I had to sum up the packaging alone in a sentence I'd have to say it's really the kind of thing you don't throw away after you open it up. HP looks like they were trying to create a very personal experience with this product, and while I don't think the personal touch quite came across fully the high-end aspect of it definitely did. This isn't a cookie-cutter laptop that you'll see plenty of others toting around, so you do get a bit of exclusivity with it. I've already managed to catch quite a few glances when I first pulled it out in the library.

    [​IMG][​IMG]

    Overall Build Quality

    The quality of the packaging carries over to my first impression when I picked it up. It is very solid and substantial just like a premium product should be. The hinge is very sturdy and isn't loose at all. A downside about the hinge design is that it really cannot be pushed that far back as you can see in the pictures. Thankfully the viewing angles are above average to help alleviate this issue somewhat. This is a notable annoyance but not a deal-breaker for me. Physically it feels quite wide compared to the dell xps m1530, but in reality when placed on top of one another they are not that different in their footprint size. The envy feels "denser" whereas the dell feels emptier likely because of the magnesium vs. plastic construction used in each. The etch pattern is really very subtle in person. You can sort of feel it when you rest your hands on the palmrest, but it's nothing that's so glaring that it makes you stick out like rudolph. You really only notice it more prominently when the light catches it right. It's pretty elegantly done I'd say, so kudos to HP for pulling that off.

    [​IMG][​IMG][​IMG][​IMG]

    Keyboard and Click-Pad

    The keyboard is quite nice coming from the traditional kind, and I was able to adjust to it with little effort. The key travel length is short like other island style keys, and it's been pretty responsive.

    The touchpad I've been having some mixed feelings about. I think that as a pad overall for scrolling around it works just fine. I don't really use many of the gestures but I'm getting used to them the more I use them. One thing I don't like is how far down you have to click at each corner to register a proper click. Basically clicking as though there are real buttons along the bottom edge doesn't work as well as I expected. I have yet to download and try the updated driver, but I'll post an update as soon as I do. As a side note, the display does not close completely flush with the main chassis. I'm pretty sure it's because of the rubber padding along the screen bezel, but you can hopefully see what I mean in the pictures I've given.

    Performance

    I've posted several benchmark numbers below to give you a feel on how this thing handles games. Subjectively, I think this laptop will do just fine with whatever you throw at it, so long as you're willing to dial-back a few settings here and there. The ATI Mobility 4830 is not a completely top of the line GPU, but it's no slouch either. It'll handle less demanding games at native res with other settings dialed down and some more stressful titles with the resolution down but with some eye candy settings on too. ATI from what I heard handles antialiasing quite well without much of a performance hit, but I've found I don't gain much at higher resolutions and just try to increase the resolution instead when I can for a better experience. Of course your preferences and mileage will vary on this. In photoshop CS2 and others it works just beautifully with everything just snapping together and running without delay. This is a far cry from what I've had to deal with for the last several years, with firefox needing a solid 30 seconds or so to fully load up the home screen. I don't have any games on hand to test properly right now except for the left 4 dead 2 demo. It runs smoothly at native resolution and with MSAA and AF settings maxed out. I'll update with more games as soon as I get some to test with.

    [​IMG][​IMG]

    3dmark Vantage: 10122 for the CPU and 3463 for the GPU
    PCMark 05: 6636
    3dmark 06: 7617
    3dmark 05: 14508


    Screen Quality

    All I can say so far about the screen is that it's absolutely gorgeous. I've never used a LED backlit screen before, but currently I use the auto-dimming feature of the screen because the maximum brightness is such a bright white.

    Out of the box the colors seemed like they had a bluish tint to them. I have a Spyder 2 Pro color calibrator which I used to calibrate the display and I'll post a before and after picture that'll help illustrate the difference that it made, which I think is a pretty big one. I can post the color profile I'm using if anyone is interested. In comparison to the dell m1530 with its WSXGA+ display, the brightness is comparable if not better. The colors are definitely much more natural on the envy and quite pleasing overall.

    UPDATE 11/11/2009:
    Screen Calibration (Text by Serg)

    Since the screen came out-of-the-box with colours somewhat bluish, a colour calibrator was used to correct that matter.
    Right below are the screenshots taken from the HP Envy 15 with the colour profile added.

    [​IMG][​IMG][​IMG][​IMG][​IMG]

    I connected it just fine to a Dell U2410 display via HDMI. I've tried to connect it to a 22'' NEC FP2141 CRT using a HDMI to DVI adaptor attached to a DVI to VGA connector but this did not work. Somehow I was hoping this little frankenstein cable would work magically, but it looks like a specific HDMI to VGA adaptor needs to be purchased. Also connecting to a 60'' Sony XBR SXRD television worked just fine with both HDMI audio and video going through smoothly and automatically when video was being played back. There's some scanning issues with my Sony, but it should work just fine in dot-by-dot settings on a LCD television. I didn't care much about the lack of edge-to-edge since it really does help reduce glare by having a bezel versus the macbook style glass display which I definitely appreciate. Sure it might have given it a more unified look, but I think HP should wait until their radiance display is available before throwing edge to edge into the envy 15.

    [​IMG][​IMG][​IMG][​IMG]


    Battery Life

    I've had some pretty conflicting numbers coming back for battery life since the processor scales very differently based on what task you're doing. I did not order the slice battery due to the extra weight it adds so I can't provide any numbers on that. I'm getting roughly 2 hrs 20 minutes at maximum with wifi on at the lowest brightness setting while typing a word document with intermittent web browsing. I'll post some more numbers under various situations, but if you have any that you want me to test out in particular just let me know.

    The adapter that comes in the box is pretty beefy, but considering it was designed to be able to charge 15-cells in a reasonable amount of time its size is more understandable. I wasn't expecting miracles considering the hardware that's in this thing, but I was still hoping for a bit more with battery life. I'm sure other users who bought the slice battery could offer a bit more on battery life numbers but as it stands I wouldn't recommend using the 6-cell for anything more than getting through a few classes because of how quickly it can drain. Using the envy instant-on os you can save some time and a bit of battery life, but I have yet to fully test out runtimes using it. For all my tests I used a customized HP power plan.

    [​IMG][​IMG]


    Heat and Noise

    I was never expecting this laptop to run cool, just hoping it wouldn't be blazing hot like my old compaq or the dell xps m1530 I have on hand. For the most part my expectations have been met. I've posted some numbers for the actual temps I'm seeing, but please keep in mind that current weather here has been fairly warm in southern california, so those temps will be higher than at other places.

    [​IMG][​IMG][​IMG][​IMG]

    As far as noise goes, there's really not much. It's pretty quiet most of the time and the only time the fan is really that noticeable is when I try and stress it by running a game. When running on battery the system runs very cool with cold air actually blowing out initially while just doing no more than typing a word document. The heat is more than acceptable when the system is running light tasks and for kicking back and browsing the web you don't need a cooling pad.

    I've tested the envy on an antec cooling pad I have on hand and it has brought down my idle temps by ~10°C or so, so it seems like a worthwhile investment. My subjective feelings on the heat is that there are some hot spots under the laptop that you wouldn't want in direct contact with you for a long time and the palmrests are always warm but definitely not hot when doing casual tasks. Trying to play an intensive game though such as Crysis will definitely bring on the heat and quickly at that. I'd say if you were planning on using this in your lap for heavy use (gaming, editing) then get some form of laptop pad for the heat. It's not terribly hot to the point it'll burn, but I don't think it'd be too safe in terms of a "male health" perspective.

    [​IMG][​IMG]


    Extras and Side Notes

    The webcam with it's night vision IR LEDs actually works pretty decently as advertised. I mean I wouldn't expect that it'll light up your whole room, but it works fairly well and succeeded in freaking out some friends in a webcam session.

    The little SD card that comes in the box is also a nice perk. As far as not having an optical drive and how it affects me everyday, I haven't run into too many snags. To load up whatever initial programs I needed I used the windows network optical drive sharing and got everything loaded without a hitch. In the long run I don't think I'll need to purchase one, but for those that access physical media regularly I can see how inconvenient it'd be.

    The beats audio software is nice, and definitely added a bit more punch for when I was using video playback through HDMI on the tv. The internal speakers themselves are quite clear and crisp but I wish they could go just a bit louder. The speakers point out towards the sides from what I can tell and they just sound like they're somehow being "muffled" by the chassis itself. I don't know how else to describe this effect. They still sound nice and definitely help in identifying footsteps around corners in games well enough.


    Final Conclusions

    All in all I have to say I'm pretty satisfied with my purchase. That doesn't mean this laptop is perfect by a long-shot. The auto-dimming brightness sensor seems a bit too sensitive, the touchpad buttons are a bit annoying, the heat is a bit uncomfortable, the keyboard isn't backlit, and the display isn't edge to edge (which might be a deal-breaker for some). I also had internet explorer crash on me after being literally the first program I opened, which wasn't a positive first experience. Having said that though, this is definitely the best laptop I've ever gotten a chance to handle hands down.

    The design, the hardware, the slim profile - its a tough combination to put together. I would have to say that this laptop is greater than the sum of its parts because of how well it was even able to bring them all together. It is definitely not a jack-of-all trades master of none situation because that would underlie how good it is in each category. It's not going to give you the fastest frame rates, the most powerful cpu, the best cooling, the lightest and thinnest design, or the full spectrum of extras and ports (backlit keyboard, vga, Display Port, etc.) but what it does offer is arguably a solid mix of everything. If portability, style, and battery life are of no concern then there are definitely cheaper options out there that'll suit your needs better.

    I think for anyone who needs or simply wants what is arguably one of the best mixes of everything that you can get right now, you can't go wrong with the envy 15 assuming you can come to accept its shortcomings. There are definitely more than a few of them, but so far I haven't run into anything nearly bad enough for me to have me rushing to print out a return label. This laptop is definitely not cheap but even if I didn't get the bing cashback I would probably be saving up right now to get it once I got enough. So all in all I'd recommend this system to anyone who's looking for as much power in a portable, sturdy, stylish package that you can get as long as you're willing to live with some compromises to get there.


    Follow-up Experience by Genryu
    On a more anecdotal note, after using my envy for a while I've started to take notice of some things (both + and -).

    1) I have the graphics driver supposedly fail, have the screen go blank, and then give a notification saying it has just recovered happen at least once every few days. It becomes more frequent if I'm watching any video or playing any games. I'm hoping it's something that can be solved with an updated driver.

    2) I've gotten a lot better at typing and making use of the extra width really helps with putting 2 windows side-by-side. For any other college students out there this is a huge boon when you need to look back and forth between anything.

    3) I'm getting better with using the trackpad over time, and I've noticed that mac users naturally use it a lot better than I can without issue. Still have issues with the pointer suddenly jumping away, and highlighting is annoying when I have to do it. Thankfully I have my mx revolution to help get around this when I'm at a desk, but just something I noticed.

    4) My overall battery life now is pretty much clocking in around the 2hr mark rarely going above it so long as I keep my usage within normal limits (screen dimmed down, wifi on, bt off, web-browsing & typing in word). Just worried about the long-term implications since if the capacity goes down it'll undoubtedly get shorter. I'm hoping HP might offer an energy efficient battery like they have for some of their other models to take care of this.

    5) Game & application performance has been nothing short of excellent. I feel that a lot of reviews (such as more recently with cnet) tended to focus heavily on the physical characteristics over the raw power under the hood. If you're comparing this to a macbook pro be aware that this will smoke it undoubtedly and by a healthy margin at that. This is based on side-by-side tests I've run with a friend on his recent mbp purchase (with a 3.06ghz core 2 duo). The numbers are all out there for anyone interested.

    6) There's definitely some creaking noises around the right along the front edge and along the left side alongside the quick-launch keys. It's not very loud, but you can hear it a little. A bit disappointing considering the price, but a small inconvenience compared to how light and solid it feels whenever you actually move it around. Everyone who's lifted it up have commented on how light it feels (even those with 15'' macbook pros).

    7) If you're going to be mobile at all be sure and have a backup solution to get files. I've already run into a few cases where a cd hasn't been essential but I'd be pretty out of luck if I didn't have my flash drive and external hdd on me. So be sure and have a backup in place if you don't feel like carrying around an external optical drive --> this is mainly an issue for college students such as myself.

    8) Blu-ray playback has been absolutely flawless so far, and really any HD source really shines on the panel. If you plan to download or watch HD in any capacity definitely do not settle for anything less than a quality display such as this one.

    That about sums it up for what I've noticed so far over the last few weeks.

    All Credits go to Genryu the author of this review.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: May 8, 2015
  4. Serg

    Serg Nowhere - Everywhere

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    IMPORTANT INFORMATION


    By Smedis

    So I had this noise from the GPU fan, like it hit a loose cable or something, and opened up my Envy to see what's going on. I stopped taking things apart when I saw the tiny cable connectors inside (didn't want to break cables by mistake). However, I did get a good look at what was causing the fan noise.

    The first picture shows the three cables I didn't want to pull (I did remove cable #1 but didn't touch #2 or #3).

    The second picture is a close-up of the GPU fan. There were no loose cables touching the fan blades. Right above the fan you can see air bubbles in the plastic that covers the underside of the keyboard. That plastic can touch the GPU fan blades, especially if you press down on the keys in the upper-right hand corner of the keyboard.

    [​IMG][​IMG]

    I tried to flatten the plastic out as best as I could (without removing all 3 cables) and put everything back together again. I made sure not to tighten the screws on the GPU side too hard. Then I booted it up again: no noise! But I think that I'll have to take off the keyboard and straighten out the plastic and glue it back on sometime in the future...

    NOTE: The Envy has not seen very much usage and the noise came right from the very first boot up. The air bubbles in the plastic were there from the factory.



    ------------------------------------------------------------------------



    Videos Related

    Gaming on the Envy 15:
    <param name="movie" value="http://www.youtube.com/v/9SPyMxCWdRU&hl=en&fs=1&"></param><param name="allowFullScreen" value="true"></param><param name="allowscriptaccess" value="always"></param><embed src="http://www.youtube.com/v/9SPyMxCWdRU&hl=en&fs=1&" type="application/x-shockwave-flash" allowscriptaccess="always" allowfullscreen="true" width='560' height='340'></embed></object>

    Meet the HP Envy Team:
    <param name="movie" value="http://www.youtube.com/v/zrljl2NkWk4&hl=en_US&fs=1&"></param><param name="allowFullScreen" value="true"></param><param name="allowscriptaccess" value="always"></param><embed src="http://www.youtube.com/v/zrljl2NkWk4&hl=en_US&fs=1&" type="application/x-shockwave-flash" allowscriptaccess="always" allowfullscreen="true" width='560' height='340'></embed></object>

    HP Envy 15 Unboxing Video:
    <param name="movie" value="http://www.youtube.com/v/nVnxe9dTeUo&hl=en&fs=1&"></param><param name="allowFullScreen" value="true"></param><param name="allowscriptaccess" value="always"></param><embed src="http://www.youtube.com/v/nVnxe9dTeUo&hl=en&fs=1&" type="application/x-shockwave-flash" allowscriptaccess="always" allowfullscreen="true" width='560' height='340'></embed></object>

    HP Envy 15 BEATS Edition Unboxing Video:
    <param name="movie" value="http://www.youtube.com/v/h0szW846xFQ&hl=en_US&fs=1&"></param><param name="allowFullScreen" value="true"></param><param name="allowscriptaccess" value="always"></param><embed src="http://www.youtube.com/v/h0szW846xFQ&hl=en_US&fs=1&" type="application/x-shockwave-flash" allowscriptaccess="always" allowfullscreen="true" width='425' height='344'></embed></object>

    HOW TO: Install a SSD on the Envy 15
    <param name="movie" value="http://www.youtube.com/v/Y05sYNkzSLc&hl=en_US&fs=1&"></param><param name="allowFullScreen" value="true"></param><param name="allowscriptaccess" value="always"></param><embed src="http://www.youtube.com/v/Y05sYNkzSLc&hl=en_US&fs=1&" type="application/x-shockwave-flash" allowscriptaccess="always" allowfullscreen="true" width='425' height='344'></embed></object>

    Boot time with Intel X25-M SSD
    <param name="movie" value="http://www.youtube.com/v/z5TFaE-2jIo&hl=en_US&fs=1&"></param><param name="allowFullScreen" value="true"></param><param name="allowscriptaccess" value="always"></param><embed src="http://www.youtube.com/v/z5TFaE-2jIo&hl=en_US&fs=1&" type="application/x-shockwave-flash" allowscriptaccess="always" allowfullscreen="true" width='425' height='344'></embed></object>

    The three videos above were made by iTBaggedUrMac, so full credits to the proper author.



    -------------------------------------------------------------------



    Color Calibration Tools
    Here are two useful tools for managing and understanding display profiles. Both are freeware.

    DisplayProfile lets you easily switch between profiles.
    CalibrationTester shows the loaded linearization tables.

    Using CalibrationTester you'll see that the profile that is being used and the settings it has. These tools are recommended to calibrate your display until it is right for you.

    Thanks to larsv for these two freewares.



    -------------------------------------------------------------------


    Mini-Guides and How-To


    How to calibrate your display:
    Download this file if you want to apply a different calibration other than the default and save it locally on your HDD.

    Calibration of the Display by Genryu

    1) Click the windows icon in the bottom right (default location) and then search for "Color Calibration"
    2) Select "Change Advanced Color Management Settings"
    3) Under the "Devices" tab, you'll the various color profiles that are currently being used.
    4) Select "Add" and find the file you got from the download and it to the list and enable it for use.

    That should be about it for what you need to do to use the profile here provided.

    NOTE: These profiles are designed to calibrate a single monitor and may not work well for everyone. Experiment, change some settings around until you're happy with the picture. This should however be a lot closer to what it should be than the default settings with that "bluish" tint.

    All of your color profiles by default should be in the following location for those who are interested

    C:\Windows\System32\spool\drivers\color



    How to configure your clickpad:
    Here is how I got to it:
    1. Double click the Synaptics icon on the taskbar
    2. Click the Device Settings tab
    3. Click Settings

    A TON of options! You can get one finger circle scrolling on and it is very nice!
    Turned on Momentum which seems pretty cool, just taking some fine tuning to get the glide right.



    How to replace your Envy 15:

    If your model came with some problem from factory, and you want/need to replace it, follow these steps in order to do so.

    1. If you want the replacement, they email you a FedEx label that you print out.
    2. You pack up the laptop and take it and the label to a FedEx drop-off location.
    3. Save the receipt with the tracking number.
    4. Shortly after it's in the FedEx system, they will start building a new laptop for you.
    5. Your return and the new laptop will show up on the HP order status online.
    6. It doesn't cost you anything except time.
    7. Enjoy your replacement!


    HP Official site states the following:

    We encourage you to try out your products right away so that if there is a problem, you can return them before the returns deadline. We accept returns and exchanges for up to 21 days after delivery, except on opened boxed software, Designjet Z2100 series Printers, HP Color LaserJet CP6015dn Printer, and gift cards (except where required by law). After the 21-day period, you can get support for any product issues from HP Customer Care.



    -------------------------------------------------------------------



    Hot to remove the cables from the MotherBoard:

    For the plastic connector with wires beside the card reader:
    There is no lock on this socket. Do not pull in the wires. Pull on each side of the white plastic connector horizontally toward the RAM and it will come off. I used my finger nail to get between the white connector and its scoket. A small regular screwdriver will work if you're carefull. To reinstall just push the white plastic connector into its socket.

    For the small white ribbon cable:
    There is no lock on this socket. There is a clear blue plastic pull tab on the end of the cable that allows you to pull the cable out of its socket. It should come off very easily. This cable is a real pain to reinstall without some mini angled needle nose pliers.

    For the large black ribbon cable:
    THIS SOCKET HAS A LOCK! You will notice on the scoket for this cable a brown part with tabs on each side. This brown part of the socket locks the black cable into position. To remove the cable simply pull up on each tab of the brown socket lock and the cable will pull out with nearly zero force . Once the socket is unlocked, the tension of having the keyboard raised should pull the cable out of the socket. Reinstallation is just as easy. Seat the black cable into the socket and press down on each side of the brown socket lock. You will feel and hear a slight click when the lock is down securely.

    SATA cable:
    The sata cable pulls straight up with the black pull tab located on the top of the connector. I used my other hand to grab the sides of the connector to give it a little extra help while I pulled on the black plastic tab.



    -------------------------------------------------------------------



    SSD Install/Cloning Tips:

    A few tips for anyone installing an ssd:
    1. HP's like the "reverse cloning" process, SSD in the computer, original HDD in an external case.
    2. Use Acronis TrueImage(can be found online for $29) to make an image then restore that image to the smaller SSD. This worked better for me than cloning for some reason.
    3. After cloning or restoring to your SSD make sure to boot the first time into SAFE MODE. This will allow Win7 to install the necessary driver for your new drive.
    4. Now your in Win7. Download, install, and run ssdtweaker. This is a handy little free program that will save you alot of time changing setings.
    5. Go here and do most of these tweaks if you want max performance from your drive
    **Be sure to disable defragmentation schedual and leave superfetch alone. Read the entire thread before you start tweaking!
    6. Use MyUninstaller, also free, to get rid of those pesky hidden programs.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: May 8, 2015
  5. Serg

    Serg Nowhere - Everywhere

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    Pics and benchmarks:



    by iTBaggedUrMac

    [​IMG][​IMG][​IMG][​IMG][​IMG]



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    by eagle17

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    by jda99

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    by Genryu

    [​IMG][​IMG][​IMG][​IMG]



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    by peppe1
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    by RodimusPrime98

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    by lugnut

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    by KevinUK

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    I am still gathering information. All is welcomed. Thanks!
     
    Last edited by a moderator: May 8, 2015
  6. lilyang

    lilyang Notebook Evangelist

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    I ran to my local bb today to check the envy 15 out, and it is one nice piece of machinery! congrats to all the buyers!
     
  7. pmoon

    pmoon Notebook Guru

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    I tried last night but the best buy here doesn't have any. I can't wait for this thing to show up.
     
  8. Fragilexx

    Fragilexx Get'cha head in the game

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    I can't wait. Unfortunately, as my friend in the US is buying it, I have to wait for him to get it and then for him to come to the UK (he's coming over anyway, so might as well bring it over rather than trust the postal system). Wont be getting it until sometime in January :(
     
  9. Serg

    Serg Nowhere - Everywhere

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    Really lilyang?? How about your impressions and thoughts on it?

    Yeah Fragilexx, I did the same, I am in France, and had it bought via a relative that is in Boston and lives in London...my wait is till Dec 11
     
  10. winkosmosis

    winkosmosis Notebook Evangelist

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    I'm planning to do quite a few tests and benchmarks when I get mine. Left 4 Dead, Dungeons & Dragons Onlne, GTA4 (never got it to run well on my dual core desktop), Red Alert 3, etc.
     
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