capsule review

HP Pavilion HDX

At a Glance
  • HP Pavilion hd2000

    PCWorld Rating

Gamers have a new best friend in the HP Pavilion HDX Entertainment Series Notebook PC. Superfast, with great sound and a huge 20.1-inch screen, it's a good, fairly portable entertainment system. Digital editors, artists, and multimedia enthusiasts will like this all-in-one, too. Just be ready to dig deep for it: Our test unit cost $3000.

The machine we looked at came maxed out with the 64-bit version of Windows Vista Ultimate; Intel's best mobile chip, the 2.4-GHz Core 2 Duo T7700; and 4GB of RAM. All of that horsepower helped the HDX earn a WorldBench 6 Beta 2 score of 86 and generate a frame rate of 109 in our Far Cry gaming tests. The HDX's 2-hour, 22-minute battery life is quite poor for an ordinary notebook but remarkably good for a massive (15.5-pound) desktop-replacement model.

The HDX is impressively crafted. For one thing, the machine looks stylish; the exterior is a subtle variation on HP's designer imprint finish called "The Dragon." The 1680-by-1050 glossy screen is easy to move back and forth on its adjustable arm for a comfortable viewing angle, and it's bright without being too reflective. The keyboard, which includes a dedicated number pad, offers desktop-like typing comfort along with one-touch QuickPlay media controls.

The system's four integrated Altec Lansing speakers, aided by an HP triple-bass-reflex subwoofer, produce very loud, rich sound, but a rear audio-out port makes it a snap to add a nicer, external set of speakers for gaming surround sound. Its many multimedia connections include a coaxial port for a TV signal. Our test system included two 100GB hard drives, and if even that isn't enough space for you, the HDX has an eSATA port for adding a fast new external hard drive.

If you've been searching for a powerful, luggable gaming machine or an ultrahigh-end desktop replacement, give the HDX a look. It's one of the nicest 20.1-inch models we've seen yet.

Carla Thornton

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At a Glance
  • PCWorld Rating

    Stylish, high-end desktop replacement is huge and heavy, but its fast performance makes it a great gaming machine.

    Pros

    • Nicely designed

    Cons

    • Very heavy
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