6
This content is rated TV-MA, and is for viewers 18 years or older. Are you of age?
Sorry, you are not old enough to view this content.

First Look: HP Envy 17 3D

About Video Transcript

First Look: HP Envy 17 3D

2:43 /

HP's upscale-feeling Envy 17 offers great hardware at a decent price, but its 3D implementation isn't as good as that of laptops with Nvidia's 3D Vision.

I'm Dan Ackerman and we are here taking a look at the HP Envy 17 3D edition. Now, if this thing looks familiar, that is because it is basically the HP Envy 17 which is one of our favorite desktop replacement laptops. It packs a lot of really cool hardware into a reasonably priced, it's, you know, under $1500 shell. This new version adds 3D capabilities. It's got a 3D mirror built in. It's got a 3D-compatible display and it comes with a pair of active shutter 3D glasses. Now, unlike a lot of other 3D laptops that we've seen, I mean there are a handful, maybe not a lot of other ones, this one does not use Nvidia's 3D Vision platform which is a package of hardware and software Nvidia puts together, that's their glasses, their software, and they put it all kind of in one sort of ecosystem for you. This system uses glasses from Xpand which is a maker of active shutter 3D glasses and software from a company called TriDef. We've seen this TriDef software before on laptops that used passive glasses for their 3D. Those have not been very impressive so far. In this 3D version of the HP Envy 17, you know, the 3D glasses actually work fine. The concept behind it is sound but that TriDef software still not really ready for prime time especially if you're paying $1599 for the 3D version of this laptop, that's about $300 more than the non-3D version. For example, if you wanna play a game on here, well, you can't just launch the game and play it in 3D like you can with an Nvidia 3D Vision system. You have to launch this TriDef wrapper app and that will actually scan your hard drive for game files and include them in the wrapper. Usually it doesn't see them. You usually have to find them manually and then install them and then you can run the game through there. It's a cumbersome process and when you actually play the game, in 3D mode, it cuts the frame rates about in half compared to what you get just playing it in regular 2D mode. We actually couldn't get this system to play 3D Blu-rays out of the gate, using either the TriDef software or HP's built-in media player software. We tried some basic troubleshooting, maybe if we tinkered around more, we can figure it out but we just downloaded CyberLink PowerDVD and that worked fine but, again, it was another extra step to go through and, of course, the actual TriDef hub over here, not the most awe inspiring software opening we've ever seen. As far as consumer software goes, that is just plain ugly. So if you love the HP 17, which we kinda do, and you just absolutely need to have 3D with it, well, then, this is pretty much your only option here. If you love the HP 17 and can live without the 3D, then I would recommend saving $300 and getting the regular non-3D version. I'm Dan Ackerman and that is the HP Envy 17 3D.

New releases

Tech to expect in 2015
2:31 December 26, 2014
The five most-anticipated gadgets we expect to see in 2015.
Play video
Best websites for finding child care
1:01 December 26, 2014
Between holiday parties and New Year's Eve plans, it can be tough to secure a babysitter. In this Tech Minute, CNET's Kara Tsuboi reports...
Play video
What's new on Netflix in January 2015
2:08 December 25, 2014
Find out what you should add to your watch list and what other videos are disappearing in the new year.
Play video
Brian Tong's Viewer Feedback 2014
2:17 December 25, 2014
We read the e-mails, tweets, and YouTube comments from you that have helped us create the best tech videos on Earth.
Play video
XCAR Awards 2014: Best-Looking
1:31 December 24, 2014
The XCAR team has played with some amazing cars in 2014, but which will be crowned the best-looking?
Play video
LG's bare bones oven needs a little more meat
2:02 December 24, 2014
The LG LRE3021 gives reliable mid-range performance, but lacks the features you can find from other brands for the same price.
Play video
Tomorrow Daily 106: Our 'Best of 2014' Extravaganza
27:44 December 24, 2014
On today's show, we celebrate another year gone by naming our (and your) favorite tech stories, pop culture news and video games of...
Play video
The big trends to watch at CES 2015
2:55 December 24, 2014
With CES around the corner, Bridget Carey tells you what to look out for at the tech expo. Expect buzz around the smart home, virtual...
Play video