HP Envy Ultrabook 6t-1000 Review

Introduction & Specifications

The expression "better late than never" fits like a glove when talking about the recent trend towards 15.6-inch Ultrabooks. We fully appreciate that Intel and its hardware partners made a concerted effort to slim down the notebook without sacrificing performance (unlike the once popular netbook form factor), but limiting the segment to 14-inch displays (and smaller) felt like a step back in some ways.

Enter Hewlett-Packard's Envy Ultrabook 6t-1000 Series. The Envy Ultrabook signals a return to the 15.6-inch form factor for those who want a larger size display, but otherwise find themselves, well, envious of slimmer laptops. Now you can have your cake and eat it, too, or at least that's the idea.

We spec'd and ordered the 6t-1000 before Windows 8 hit, though if you're interested in Microsoft's touch-friendly operating system, HP will happily oblige with the slightly newer 6t-1100. The one we have for review runs Windows 7, but aside from the OS, they're the exact same Ultrabook, including the non-touch display.

Speaking of which, does a 15.6-inch LCD panel ruin the Ultrabook experience, or does it enhance it? And is the Envy 6t-1000 Series worth your consideration? Glad you asked; and we're happy to give you the full rundown...

HP Envy Ultrabook 6t-1000
Specifications & Features
Processor Intel Core i5 3317U Processor
Operating System Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit
Chipset Intel HM77 Express Chipset
Graphics Intel HD Graphics 4000
Memory 8GB DDR3 1600 MHz DRAM
Display 15.6" 16:9 (1366x768) HD BrightView LED
Storage 500GB 5400 RPM hard drive + 32GB mSATA
Optical External 8X DVD burner
Networking Integrated 802.11 b/g/n
10/100 BASE-T Ethernet LAN
Intel Wireless Display
Interface Headphone/Microphone ports
2 x USB 3.0 port
1 x USB 2.0 (Charging)
1 x HDMI 1.4
RJ-45 Ethernet
Multi-format media card reader
Kensington Lock
Battery Li-Ion (4-cell)
Power Adapter 65W AC adapter
Dimensions 14.72 x 9.95 x 0.78 inches
Weight 4.75 pounds
Manufacturer Warranty 1-year limited hardware warranty support
Pricing: $1,089.98 (as configured)

The base price for the Envy Ultrabook 6t-1000 is $799.99; the reason ours is priced higher is because we added an external DVD burner to the mix and doubled the RAM from 4GB to 8GB. It comes standard with a 3rd Generation Intel Core i5 3317U processor and integrated Intel HD Graphics 4000. If you're a gamer or simply need more GPU horsepower, you can step up to a discrete AMD Radeon HD 7670M chip for $75.

As configured, our setup sports the same CPU and storage configuration as the Dell Inspiron 14z we reviewed in July. Dell made great use of the 32GB mSATA solid state drive (SSD), which picked up the performance slack left by the 5400 RPM hard drive. How does HP's system compare? We'll toss in some comparison benchmarks in just a moment, but first let's have a look at the total package.

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