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HP Pavilion zd8000 review: HP Pavilion zd8000

Review Sections

Unreal Tournament 2004
(Longer bars indicate faster performance)
Atari Games/Epic Games Unreal Tournament 2004  

In order to test gaming performance, CNET Labs uses Atari Games/Epic Games Unreal Tournament 2004. Rather than isolate the graphics adapter, this test evaluates overall system performance, with an emphasis on CPU speed. Find out more about how we test laptops.

Doom 3 performance
The HP Pavilion zd8000 is the first system we've tested with the Mobility Radeon X600 256MB, ATI's first PCI Express card for notebooks. (PCI Express is Intel's high-bandwidth interface between the video adapter and the rest of the system.) The ABS Mayhem G3 houses the ATI Mobility Radeon 9700 128MB video adapter, a relatively common AGP-based card. The Dell Inspiron XPS, equipped with the ATI Mobility Radeon 9800 256MB--the most powerful graphics processor of the three--was significantly faster than the Pavilion zd8000 and the Mayhem G3 in our test. Still, all three systems delivered very good gaming performance.

Doom 3 High Quality, 10x7, 4XAA
(Longer bars indicate faster performance)
Id software/Activision's Doom 3  

In order to isolate the video adapters of these three systems, we used Doom 3's Timedemo in combination with CNET's own custom demo. We tested Doom 3 at a resolution of 1,024x768 and with 4X antialiasing enabled in high-quality mode intended for systems with at least 128MB of video memory. Find out more about how we test laptops.

Performance analysis written by CNET Labs assistant lab manager Eric Franklin.

System configurations:

ABS Mayhem G3
Windows XP Professional; 2.2GHz Athlon 64 3400+ DTR; 1,024MB 400MHz DDR RAM; ATI Mobility Radeon 9700 128MB; Hitachi Travelstar 7K60 60GB 7,200rpm

Dell Inspiron XPS
Windows XP Professional; 3.4GHz Intel Pentium 4 Extreme Edition; 1GB DDR SDRAM 400MHz; ATI Mobility Radeon 9800 256MB; Hitachi Travelstar 7K60 60GB 7,200rpm

HP Pavilion zd8000
Windows XP Media Center; Pentium 4 3.6GHz; 1GB 400MHz DDR RAM; ATI Mobility Radeon X600 256MB; Toshiba MK8026GAX 80GB 5,400rpm HP backs the Pavilion zd8000 with an industry-standard one-year warranty on parts and labor; upgrading to three years of coverage costs $179.

With a support Web site that's second to none, HP stands behind its laptops with a comprehensive assortment of software, manuals and setup help, detailed troubleshooting, and a list of available accessories. It all comes together with HP's Total Care interface, which helps direct you toward the right answer or file, although HP's help system occasionally balked during our time spent with the Pavilion zd8000.

Toll-free tech support is available for the life of the laptop, but you'll have to wade through HP's error-prone automated response system to get someone on the line. A helpful operator was on the line after 2 minutes, 15 seconds in our test, and she had the correct answer to our question and even double-checked it with her supervisor, while we waited. The company automatically e-mails updates and accepts support questions via e-mail.

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