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Best Ultrabook for the money
Pros: Great design and features. You get full Adobe photo and video editing software, and two full years of Norton. Keyboard is well set up and has decent travel when compared to the samsung series 9 or asus machines. The trackpad is smooth and responsive (at hundreds of $ less, i might add). Many blogs and reviewers gripe about the screen, but at 13.3 inch, the resolution works. I briefly had the higher-res Spectre 14 and the higher res screen made things too small on this size machine. Build quality is very good for windows based machine. Specs are good too--Ivy Bridge i5, 4 gig of ram and a speedy SSD. Boot up time is minimal and it awakes from sleep almost instantaneously. Battery seems good too. From what I can tell so far, I will get roughly 5-6 hours out of it. Minimal bloatware. This machine feels light and sturdy. I get the feeling it will last me several years. On board speakers are decent, but i probably wont be using them much. I didn't buy this for beats audio.
Cons: Although it is a well built machine from HP, it isn't perfect. Screen wobbles a bit and the underside has a soft-grip, but plastic quality to it. The SSD is fast, but a lot of the space is eaten up by the system restore partition. I'd rather have that space and put the system restore on an SSD. Out of the box, you're looking at about 70 gig available. I think the screen is nice, but the colors don't blow me away. I don't expect to be playing any new games on this, but it seems powerful enough to dabble.
Other Thoughts: Overall a great computer. If you're looking for a computer with equal build quality to the macbook air, just go with a macbook air. This machine comes close, but little things like screen hinge balance (so you can just open with one hand) aren't there. HP definitely did a great job paying attention to detail, but they overlooked a few superficial things. Of the available options, this one is the best for the price. I wanted a Windows machine, and after extensive research and screen issues with the HP Spectre 14, this guy wins the day. All the other ultrabooks seems to have some issue with the screen, trackpad, cheap keyboard or poor build quality. You're not getting a super-hi-res display here, but you're getting a great computer with very good specs.
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“Great design and features. You get full Adobe photo and video editing software, and two full years of Norton. Keyboard ...”— Corbin Bernsen 9/7/2012