Conclusion: Our machine featured the upgraded 14.5" HD+ HP Radiance LED display running at 1600 x 900. While I personally love the increased resolution and colors were very vibrant, I couldn't help but notice that whites seemed a bit too warm. I was able to adjust this to a more acceptable level using Windows 7's calibration tools, but I can still tell a difference between the whites on the HP display and those of other notebook or LCD monitors.
Summary: Can you believe that just six months ago, HP was thinking of ditching the PC business? It seems far fetched today, now that we know the company had laptops like the lightweight, long-lasting Folio 13 and the powerful yet relatively inexpensive Envy series up its sleeves. And of course, that's before we consider the HP Envy 14 Spectre, too.
Pros: Original, attractive design, Crisp, clear display, Responsive trackpad, Good allotment of ports
Cons: Crummy speakers, Battery life doesn't match girth, Lid hard to open, Pricier than most
Summary: The HP Envy 14-3100 Spectre is an ultrabook intended for those who want a beautifully designed device, which makes certain to note, without sacrificing performance. Undoubtedly, the strengths are the lid and the palm rest covered with Gorilla Glass. The backlit keyboard with proximity sensor and autonomy especially high.
Pros: Backlit keyboard, Radiance Display high-resolution Full connectivity, Beats Audio technology, aluminum alloy body with Corning Gorilla; HDMI output, HD Webcam
HP Envy 14 Spectre Ultrabook Review: Something More Than Envy
24 August 2012
Conclusion: I've used the phrase "you already know if you want it" for another review, but with the HP Envy 14 Spectre it again seems appropriate. This isn't a bad notebook necessarily, but its distinctive design does come with a series of caveats and compromises. No one else you know will have a notebook that looks or feels quite like it, but there are reasons for that.
Summary: A Beautiful Accessory or Cutting-Edge Technology? The HP Envy 14 Spectre is a beautiful laptop with a price tag of $1200 USD. Many buyers will be enticed by the model's looks, but is the laptop really worth the money? We find out in the following review.
Pros: Very high quality workmanship, Nearly perfect keyboard, Good battery life, Easily accessible ports, The SSD has great access times, Very quiet (during normal use), High-quality speakers ("beats-audio"), The built-in keyboard is well-designed and is a pleasure to type on. The controls for the audio combined with the high-quality "beats-audio" speakers will satisfy multimedia fans.
Cons: The surface of the touchpad is too smooth, Glare display, No Kensington Lock, Heavy weight, The display should also be premium quality.
Conclusion: None of the competitors mentioned above is as drop-dead sexy as the Spectre, they all have smaller displays (with the exception of the Ultra M3), and none have integrated media-streaming features. On the other hand, each one of them is less expensive (by several hundred dollars, in some cases), and several are considerably faster than the Spectre. If sheer performance is your foremost concern, you can leave this machine off your list of contenders.
Pros: Beautiful design, Great display, High-end feature set, Generous and genuinely useful software bundle
Cons: Expensive, Glass likely to shatter if dropped, Heavy for its size, Fan turns noisy under load
Excerpt: HP's Envy 14 Spectre wowed us at CES 2012, but looks can be deceiving. In this full review we find out if this 'premium Ultrabook' is worth the extra price, or if it's just a big, shiny, fingerprint magnet. Read on for the finer details.
Excerpt: Apple probably didn’t realize what it was starting when it decided to build the iPhone 4 out of two panes of glass, forgoing the traditional metal or plastic backing and causing thousands of geek brains to simultaneously explode at the prospect. But somehow this worked, and Apple ended up not with a bunch of people crying over broken phones but rather kudos for drafting such an avant garde design. Now here comes everyone else.
Conclusion: That said, the $1,399 asking price for the starting configuration is undeniably high, considering that this is a machine that's geared decidedly at simple, everyday tasks, as opposed to heavy-duty processing. It looks great and it feels great in your hands, and you certainly won’t be ashamed to be seen with the Spectre in a business meeting or on your tray table. But with the HP Envy 14 Spectre, just be clear before you buy: You're paying for style, not performance.
Pros: Attractive, unusual design dominated by Gorilla Glass, Terrific audio, Volume dial on the side, USB 3.0 port, Excellent software bundle
Cons: Touch pad needs tuning, Merely average performance for the price, Too expensive