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Pros: No OS. That was pro for me because I dislike Win8 and would of installed Win7 anyway. I got this on special and got it shipped for $330 CAD. It's unbranded and I like the sharpy and electric tape un-branding job they did. They did a clean job even though you still can find branding on some components (there's an HP logo on the end of the power cord that you plug in the laptop).
It's obvious this is a refurbished laptop; mine came with a 640GB HDD instead of the 500GB that is cited in the specs (I can't complain). I also found that the keyboard wasn't fully "clipped" on at a spot; that's telling me it was removed or replaced. If it wasn't of those details, I could swear I received a new device. For performance, well you get what you pay for and it's pretty good for the use I make of it (music, web surfing and videos on big screen TV). I was a bit disappointed to see a black border after plugging the device on my HD TV only to be pleasantly surprised to see an up-scaling option in the Catalyst software which resoled the issue.
After searching around the web for driver (HP support site only list Win8 drivers), I was able to make everything work correctly (including the USB3 ports and the webcam). I took me couple of hours and some trial and error to get everything working, but I don't mind, I actually love doing that kind of work... I recommend going on AMD support and download website and select "APU" in step one and select "Auto detect and install" in step two. This resolved a lot of problems I had.
At beginning I though it was running hot (I was using HWMonitor) but after looking around, I found the AMD OverDrive software which correctly reads the sensors. If you want to use it, I recommend that you don't play with settings (don't overclock a laptop, seriously) but use the Status Monitor to get correct temp reading. Finally, the laptop never get more than 10 deg Celsius near the "critical" temperature (the AMD website says 100 deg Celsius is the max for this CPU, so I guess it got up to 90 deg Celsius) and it when it does, it's only briefly. The noise level is pretty normal for a laptop, but I don't have much experience in that domain (my first laptop).
The speakers are not bad, the keyboard (english config) is a full one (num pad) and wireless adaptors works 100% of the time so far. The colors of the screen aren't amazing, but it's still good for such a thin monitor.
All in all I'm very satisfied with the purchase.
Cons: No DVD drive to install the OS. You get a paper with the DVD containing the drivers that cite that the drivers included are for Win7. This is wrong; only Win8 drivers are found on the DVD and I'm not sure it contains everything, but can't say because I installed Win7. Another thing is that the drivers on the DVD are in folders that are labeled in Spanish. If you want to install Win7, make sure you activate the legacy mode in the BIOS. I did the install from a DVD drive, but if you want to do it on a USB drive, make sure it's NOT formated in NTFS. Tools that build bootable Windows USB key will ask you to format in NTFS; do it, copy the content of the drive and quick format in FAT32 and recopy the content. It should recognize the USB drive then.
The laptop have flimsy plastic feel, but for the price, you can't complain. It sure is a fingerprint magnet. I believe it was running hotter before installing all the drivers so be careful and install everything ASAP.
Other Thoughts: Thanks for the other reviews here and for the 5 egg rating. It helped me a lot find this little gem.READ FULL REVIEW