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HP Pavilion dv7t Quad Edition Series 17.3-Inch Laptop

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HP Pavilion dv7t Quad Edition Laptop Review
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Mar 3 2011 - The HP Pavilion dv7t Quad Edition Series is a versatile 17.3-inch notebook PC that is great for both work and play. Throw in free upgrades and rebates by HP and you have an affordable desktop replacement. Although the video card is by no means a high-end gaming graphics card, it does support DirectX 11 and offers 1GB of GDDR5 for light to moderate gaming. The real value lies in the budget-friendly price of $1,100, fast Sandy Bridge processor, and abundance of memory thanks to HP incentives.

Pros

  • Free Upgrades and Rebates From HP Add Value
  • Fast 2nd Generation Intel Core i7 Sandy Bridge Processor

Cons

  • Economical Video Card
  • Display Doesn't Support Full HD 1080p Resolution

Description

  • 2nd Generation Intel Core i7-2630QM (2.0 GHz, 6MB L3 Cache) with Turbo Boost up to 2.9 GHz
  • 4GB of DDR3 Memory
  • 17.3" HD+ HP BrightView LED Display (1600 x 900)
  • 1GB AMD Radeon HD 6570M GDDR5 graphics
  • 640GB 7200RPM Hard Drive
  • 6-Cell Lithium-Ion Battery
  • Windows 7 Home Premium 64-Bit
  • 16.35" (W) x 10.8" (D) x 1.25" (Min H)/1.46" (Max H) @ 6.86 Pounds

Review - HP Pavilion dv7t Quad Edition Series Laptop PC

HP is typically known for business-class and consumer notebooks but as their laptop line has grown so have the available uses. The HP Pavilion dv7t Quad Edition is Sandy Bridge notebook PC with a dedicated graphics card that handles its own in gaming situations.

For starters, the HP Pavilion dv7t features a 17.3-inch BrightView LED display with a max resolution of 1600x900. Although this isn't full HD 1080p resolution, it is a decent value for the price. Where the HP Pavilion dv7t does shine is in processing power. The dv7t is equipped with a new Intel 2nd Generation Sandy Bridge processor. The base configuration contains an Intel Core i7-2630QM with 6MB of L3 cache and a max Turbo speed of 2.9GHz. This CPU is nice and fast in a variety of settings, including work in Office applications.

It is worth noting that the list price of the HP Pavilion dv7t Quad Edition is $1,249.99. But HP often offers instant incentives and free upgrades. At the time of publication, the dv7t qualifies for a $150 instant rebate bringing the price to $1099.99. For just under $1,100 you get the quad-core processor referenced above, as well as 4GB of DDR3 memory standard (although this notebook qualifies for a free upgrade to 6GB as of the date of this review). For $60 more, an upgrade from 6GB to 8GB is available which is definitely worth considering to make the laptop future-proof. And $60 is a reasonable price for the upgrade.

But what gamers really want to know is - how does the graphics card perform? The HP Pavilion dv7t Quad Edition features a 1GB AMD Radeon HD 6570M video card. Although this card isn't a benchmark buster, it does allow you to tap into the latest games including DirectX 11 titles. However, don't expect to play at high settings as this card is an economical component geared for casual gamers on everyday computers. It's best suited for those looking for a laptop that can be used for both work and light gaming.

Along with gaming, the HP Pavilin dv7t Quad Edition Series notebook also serves as a great multimedia machine with a Blu-ray drive. Although this option isn't standard, it is currently a free upgrade. Since the display offers above average resolution, Blu-ray movies look good on the screen.

The rest of the components are average for a notebook in this price range. The base 640GB hard drive is fast with an ample amount of storage space even though HP has a free incentive going on an upgrade to the 750GB drive.

Unfortunately, battery life on a 17-inch notebook isn't great especially with a 6-cell battery. But as gamers know, gaming on battery is rarely ideal. You can also upgrade the battery to a 9-cell model but beware it is oversized.

Overall, the HP Pavilion dv7t Quad Edition is a decent value for hybrid gamers (i.e. those who want to work and play on a laptop). The fast Sandy Bridge Core i7 processor, dedicated graphics card, and display are on par for the price. Pair it with free upgrades and the potential for a great discount via an HP coupon and you have a laptop that can go to a business meeting or play a DirectX 11 game in the airport.

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