Conclusion: The other major consideration is that the Envy 15 comes with those two pieces of Adobe software. You could, of course, buy just one of those programs (and it would be the newer version) and install it on the VAIO for the same total price as the Envy 15. Plus, you'd have it on a faster machine. But if you need both apps (and if the Envy's design is important to you), the HP Envy 15 just might be the better way to go.
Pros: Eye-catching design, Terrific audio, with volume dial on laptop's side, USB 3.0 ports, Excellent software bundle, including premium Adobe apps
Cons: Not the speediest machine for the price, Multitouch touch pad could be better, Hefty chassis, Runs warm
Summary: Six years after the introduction of the MacBook Pro, it appears the PC industry has finally realized that Apple was onto something. With laptops like the Dell XPS 15z and Samsung Series 7 Chronos , the incumbents are scrambling to build a cheaper MacBook Pro for the Windows set, and in more ways than one: not only do the Windows machines have similar metallic builds, they also attempt to copy Apple's design language.
Pros: Rock-solid aluminum construction, Excellent audio for a laptop, Optional 1080p Radiance display is sharp, colorful
Cons: Quirky touchpad with stiff buttons, Average battery life, No Blu-ray option, Unabashed copy of the MacBook Pro
Conclusion: We really like the HP Envy 15-3040nr: it's a high performance yet portable laptop that's clad in metal and has all the creature comforts you'd expect from a higher end laptop. We like the dual HDMI and DisplayPort with the ability to drive multiple monitors, strong dedicated graphics, backlit keyboard and a full HD 1080p IPS display. Though I purchased the Envy for review purposes, I've decided to keep it as my main Windows machine.
Pros: Very fast, great gaming performance, 1080p IPS display, metal build.
Cons: Keyboard flex on left side, some complaints about red color accuracy on forums.
The design of the HP Envy 15 is essentially the same as the Envy 13, majoring on solid construction from a magnesium alloy chassis and a multitouch button-less trackpad
Good Gear Guide.au
6 July 2011
Summary: There is potential for high performance in this laptop with its interesting processor, but there's also enough niggles to make us cautious before making a recommendation. Given the high power demands of the CPU, this is still more of a desktop replacement, a static desk design which makes the separate optical drive an satisfactory solution over a regular integrated unit.
Good audio performance and a useful set of features make this a worthwhile notebook, but it could use some refinement
Good Gear Guide.au
6 July 2011
Summary: While it's not the perfect specimen of a premium laptop, the HP Envy 15 still has a lot to like. It comes with a good configuration, it looks attractive and it sounds great. However, its input devices could use some refinement and its screen is too glossy for our liking.
Pros: Looks good, Backlit keyboard, Core i7 CPU and 8GB RAM, Audio quality
Cons: Touchpad could be better, Screen too glossy, Keyboard is a little bouncy
Excerpt: There’s no disguising the source of HP’s inspiration when designing the HP Envy 15-1110ea – this is the laptop for the Windows user who really wanted a MacBook Pro. It’s metallic chassis houses a similar keyboard and a large buttonless trackpad, while the display sits behind an edge-to-edge glass pane.