Don't let HP's use of the word entertainment mislead you. The company's slick-looking new thin-and-light laptop, the HP Pavilion dv1000 Entertainment Notebook, is terrific for watching DVD movies and listening to music (even without booting up the operating system), but its Intel 855GME graphics chip is too low end for serious gaming performance. Still, there's a lot to like about the HP Pavilion dv1000, including its attractive and lightweight 5.5-pound case, an abundance of handy buttons with soothing blue backlights, and an acceptable (if not stunning) overall performance. Priced at $1,400 (as of August 2004), the Pavilion dv1000 costs much less than multimedia rivals, such as the Toshiba Qosmio, but it lacks a number of higher-end features, such as the TV tuning found with the Qosmio. We recommend the HP Pavilion dv1000 as a solid and sensibly priced system for students, families, and small-business users who want to work and play on the road. The HP Pavilion dv1000 is both cool-looking and cleverly designed. Weighing in at 5.5 pounds, the laptop runs 13.2 inches wide, 9.3 inches deep, and 1.5 inches high. The Pavilion dv1000's 14.1-inch wide-aspect panel, with a 1,280x768 native resolution, is smaller than some screens found on other entertainment-focused laptops, but it's big enough for viewing DVDs and accomplishing productivity tasks. While HP has squeezed a fixed, secondary storage bay into the case for a DVD/CD-RW drive, we wish we could swap out the drive for other modules, such as an extra battery. The touch pad and the mouse buttons are on the small side, but they feature an on/off button that lets you disable the pad when it's not in use; as a result, accidental bumps won't send your cursor flying around the page.
HP has dabbled with blue status lights before--check out the HP Pavilion zt3000--and the dv1000's blue lights illuminate an entire row of handy buttons nestled above the comfortably large keyboard. In addition to the requisite power and volume controls, the Pavilion dv1000's DVD and CD quick-play buttons let you play DVDs, CDs, or MP3s stored to your hard drive without booting up. To the lower right of the keyboard are menu control keys and tiny Back/OK buttons for navigating through DVD menus; additional playback controls run along the top of the keyboard. When couch-bound, you can use the included full-featured remote control, which HP has ingeniously stashed inside the system's single Type II PC Card slot--a handy storage spot (when not filled with another card).
The Pavilion dv1000 heaps on a generous helping of ports and slots. The left edge offers ports for 56Kbps modem, Ethernet, VGA, docking, and one USB 2.0 connection. Another USB 2.0 port lies on the right edge, along with S-Video out and FireWire ports, plus a useful six-in-one card-reader slot that accepts Secure Digital, Memory Stick, Memory Stick Pro, MultiMedia Card, SmartMedia, and xD cards. The Pavilion dv1000's front edge is home to one microphone and two audio out jacks--nice for tandem DVD viewing on a plane--along with two speakers, which are slightly better than the ones on most laptops. The Pavilion dv1000 also has a convenient button to turn off the integrated 802.11b/g Wi-Fi radio and Bluetooth hardware to conserve battery power and make for easy plane travel. The HP Pavilion dv1000's components aren't cutting edge, but at $1,400, we wouldn't expect them to be. The system features a Pentium M processor running at a midrange 1.5GHz, 512MB of sluggish 266MHz SDRAM, a big 80GB hard drive spinning at a drowsy 4,200rpm, and a low-end Intel 855GME graphics chip that uses up to 64MB of the system's main memory. Despite these somewhat middling specs, the Pavilion dv1000 managed to produce respectable speed in CNET Labs' test benchmarks. Don't count on great gaming performance, though: our Labs' tests have proven time and again that games and this graphics chip just don't mix.
The Pavilion dv1000's other components are on the money. The 14.1-inch display, with its 1,280x768 native resolution, isn't huge, but its BrightView technology makes for an especially vivid picture. In a cost-cutting move, HP includes a DVD/CD-RW drive rather than a DVD-rewritable drive, but the included drive should be enough for most people. The Pavilion dv1000's 802.11b/g Wi-Fi and Bluetooth hardware are standard laptop fare.
An optional hardware feature worth a nod is HP's new $199 xb2000 expansion base. You can plunk down the whole system into the base, adjust the base height, and raise the notebook's display to eye level to use it in place of an external monitor; in this way, it's a lot like Dell's notebook stand. The base also offers a ton of extra ports for plugging in external peripherals, such as a mouse and a keyboard.
In keeping with its consumer bent, the Pavilion dv1000 ships with Windows XP Home. HP's Quick Play application is the real star in the system's software lineup, however, allowing you watch DVDs or play music without booting up the operating system. Otherwise, the Pavilion dv1000 ships with a decent lot of software: a few Microsoft offerings, including Works, Money 2004, and Encarta Plus, as well as Sonic's RecordNow for burning CDs and InterVideo's WinDVD for watching DVDs when the system is booted up. Mobile application performance
The HP Pavilion dv1000 doesn't quite measure up to other comparable systems. Running an older Banias-based 1.5GHz Pentium M, it lagged significantly behind the Dell Inspiron 700m and the Sony VAIO VGN-A190--two systems powered by Dothan-based Pentium M processors at 1.8GHz and 1.7GHz, respectively. Nevertheless, the Pavilion dv1000 is about average for a Pentium M 1.5GHz-based system and adequate for most office and content-creation use.
|BAPCo MobileMark 2002 performance rating|
Performance analysis written by CNET Labs assistant lab manager Eric Franklin.
Find out more about how we test notebooks. Where a slower processor handicaps the Pavilion dv1000's mobile application performance, that slowness is a boon for the dv1000's battery life. Running a 10.8V, 4,400mAh (48WHr) battery, the Pavilion dv1000 lasted more than four hours in our office and content-creation tests. The Sony VAIO VGN-A190, with an 11.1V, 4,000mAh (44WHr) battery, and the Dell Inspiron 700m, with a 14.8V, 2,200mAh (33WHr) battery, couldn't manage even three hours. The Pavilion dv1000 possesses above-average battery life.
|BAPCo MobileMark 2002 battery life in minutes|
Battery life analysis written by CNET Labs assistant lab manager Eric Franklin.
To measure mobile application performance and battery life, CNET Labs uses BAPCo's MobileMark 2002. MobileMark measures both application performance and battery life concurrently using a number of popular applications (Microsoft Word 2002, Microsoft Excel 2002, Microsoft PowerPoint 2002, Microsoft Outlook 2002, Netscape Communicator 6.0, WinZip Computing WinZip 8.0, McAfee VirusScan 5.13, Adobe Photoshop 6.0.1, and Macromedia Flash 5.0).
Dell Inspiron 700m
Windows XP Home; 1.8GHz Intel Pentium M 745; 512MB DDR SDRAM 333MHz; Intel Extreme Graphics 2 for Mobile (up to 64MB shared); Fujitsu MHT2060AH 60GB 5,400rpm
HP Pavilion dv1000
Windows XP Home; 1.5GHz Intel Pentium M; 512MB DDR SDRAM 266MHz; Intel 82852/82855 GM/GME up to 64MB; Fujitsu MHT2080AT PL 80GB 4,200rpm
Sony VAIO VGN-A190
Windows XP Home; 1.7GHz Intel Pentium M 735; 512MB DDR SDRAM 333MHz; ATI Mobility Radeon 9700 AGP 64MB; Hitachi Travelstar 80GN 80GB 4,200rpm Hallelujah! After years of sticking it to customers with toll-based tech support, HP has finally switched to a toll-free tech-support number. You can call that number 24/7 during your warranty period for free help from a live rep. The Pavilion dv1000's base warranty runs for one year--an average length from most manufacturers--and it includes free parts and labor via mail-in service. HP offers a number of extended-warranty options; three years of service and accidental-damage protection costs $300.
The documentation for the Pavilion dv1000 is particularly good. Several well-written manuals are included; they detail everything about the notebook, from its Quick Play software to its remote control. Another service highlight: for the life of the warranty, you can chat for free in real time with a tech-support rep on HP's support Web site.