HP updated its flagship desktop-replacement laptop today, announcing the Pavilion dv8000. Joining the dv family (along with the Dell Inspiron 9300*, the $2,800 *, and the $2,450 Fujitsu LifeBook N6210*. Although Turion may not pack as much power as Pentium, it seems to run more efficiently; the dv8000 lasted for 3.5 hours in our battery drain test.and the ), the dv8000 makes some significant departures from the , which it will replace in HP's consumer lineup. For one, HP has abandoned Intel: the dv8000 runs a 2.2GHz AMD Turion 64 processor and ATI's Radeon Xpress 200m GPU. Our preliminary testing shows that this move has cost the dv8000 some performance points: it ran about 20 percent slower than the Pentium 4-fueled zd8000 in our benchmarks and delivered ghastly results in our Doom 3 gaming test. Nevertheless, the dv8000's overall performance is on a par with that of most of today's desktop replacements, including the $2,850
The dv8000 really shines in the design department. At 7.5 pounds (8.6 with its AC adapter), it's about 2 pounds lighter than the zd8000 and 1 to 2 pounds lighter than the Dell, the Sony, or the Fujitsu. The dv8000 still has a 17-inch wide-screen display (which still looks a bit dim), a great keyboard with a separate number pad, and a full (and nicely laid-out) set of features and connections. Here are some highlights:
* Instant-on, which HP calls QuickPlay
* Remote control that fits in the PC Card slot
* Hard drive capacity up to 240GB
* Double-layer DVD burner with LightScribe
* 6-in-1 media card reader
* Four USB 2.0, 1 FireWire, S-Video out
* One year of standard tech support, which is not to be taken lightly, now that Dell's skimping with a 90-day plan.
On HP's site this morning, we're seeing the Pavilion dv8000 start at $899 after rebates. A fully loaded version will probably put you closer to $1,500 or more. HP will start shipping the dv8000 on November 9, 2005, and we'll have our full review up well before then.
* Note: these numbers reflect pricing at the time of review; these laptops are likely less expensive now.