HP Pavilion dv6724tx Special Edition review: HP Pavilion dv6724TX Special Edition "Thrive"

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The Good Luxurious design. Physically strong. Better-than-usual speakers. Blu-ray drive. HDMI.

The Bad No higher resolution screen option available. No gigabit ethernet. Massive graphics driver download. A little more battery life would be nice. No HSDPA.

The Bottom Line HP has well and truly hit its stride with its laptops, and the dv6700 series represents a new level in quality. Unless your needs involve being ultramobile or requiring HSDPA, you won't be disappointed with this machine.

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8.8 Overall

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HP really has something going. Building on the strength from the smaller Verve, the Thrive is definitely aimed at those who don't mind a bit of luxury in their life -- from the burnt orange lid with inscribed lines featured on it, to the metal interior and smooth trackpad -- the dv6700 is something to behold.

The full-sized keyboard is fantastic, giving a solid clicky feel, so you know when you've struck a key properly. Little touches like the caps lock LED being positioned next to the caps lock key itself are appreciated, as is the positioning of the air vent at the rear so external mouse users don't find their hands heating up. The construction is strong, but not heavy for the size or features.

While the Altec Lansing speakers included will never hit audiophile status, they're better than most solutions, and can put out a respectable volume with minimal clipping or distortion.

Three USB ports, one modem port, one Ethernet (although bizarrely, not gigabit), firewire, VGA and HDMI fill out the sides, as well as an MMC/xD/SD/MS card reader and Express Card 54 slot. A Blu-ray drive takes preference as the optical drive of choice -- a decent investment. Dual headphone jacks, a microphone jack and infrared receiver are mounted to the front, while a webcam sits atop the 15.4-inch, 1,280 x 800 screen. Missing is a fingerprint scanner, although we strongly doubt this laptop will be used in a business scenario where it makes sense to have one.

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