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All posts tagged "hp"

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

HP Makes Sure You Got Served

Posted by Hooch Tan in "Digital Home News" @ 01:00 PM

"It hasn't all been teddy bears and fluffy bunnies. HP's focus on simplifying the MediaSmart Server has left enthusiasts, like me and others who read in-depth reviews of Home Servers, wanting more power, flexibility, and control over features like the Video Converter and Media Collector... without resorting to registry edits and other complex hacks. Is it even possible to give power users the features they want without overwhelming the everyday user?"

It seems it was just the other day that I was talking about the release of the HP MediaSmart EX-485 and EX-487 servers and here HP has pulled a trick from the video card industry and announced the EX-490 and EX-495 less than a year after the release of their previous generation. Maybe sales are disappointing and they feel they have to "upgrade" things to get more attention. At least the upgrades seem substantial for the premium server. HP has changed up their hardware for the MediaSmart servers with every generation, and now they're creeping into dual-core territory. It would not surprise me if in a few months, they announce a quad-core server! Still, the focus of their upgrade, and rightfully so, is the software, which seems to be getting better with every iteration. It is almost enough to consider not doing home-brew. Still on the fence? Check out MediaSmartHome's review, which goes through a lot of detail of what a Windows Home Server can do!

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

HP Coming Out With Envy

Posted by Hooch Tan in "Digital Home News" @ 02:00 PM

"When Voodoo PC came under HP's umbrella a few years back, we began to see all sorts of interesting collaborations: The Blackbird desktop and the HP Voodoo Envy 133, with its sleek laptop looks, garnered second glances from lustful nerds. Now, the Voodoo brand name falls by the wayside as HP adopts the Envy moniker for this superstylish, silvery line."

Benefiting from its purchase of VoodooPC, HP has tried to use the brand to sell more premium level computers. Their latest stab is the HP Envy 13 and 15. Details on the Envy 15 are pretty scare though, but HP has not been shy about what the Envy 13 packs. When I first looked at the specifications, I was actually a little disappointed. The Radeon HD 4330 GPU is pretty pedestrian in my opinion, but then again, this is a 13" screen laptop we are talking about. Sure, the 4330 will not compare against GTX 280M GPUs in 17 inch behemoths, but it also probably weighs less than one third of a gaming beast. The aesthetic design looks fairly good (yes, very Applish) and probably is targeted towards those who want high mobility, but are not quite willing to compromise on the horsepower that a netbook fails to provide. And look good while doing it! Still, the weak GPU, while discrete kind of turns me away, especially with the increasing usefulness of GPGPUs.

Monday, September 14, 2009

HP Unveils the new Vivienne Tam Mini...Sort Of

Posted by Jason Dunn in "Digital Home Hardware & Accessories" @ 01:02 PM

"Chic and uber cool - that's the new digital clutch by the world-renowned designer Vivienne Tam and HP. Inspired by the classic Chinese love story concerto 'Butterfly Lover', often described as the Chinese version of 'Romeo and Juliet', the design features elegant butterflies that are brought to life on a champagne gold backdrop."

There's not much more to know about this beyond the design, and, according to Techtree, the screen size is moving up from 10.1 inches to 11.6 inches. It's not coming out until spring of 2010, which seems like a long wait, so we'll have to see what kind of specs it has. This very likely means that the next generation of HP Mini will also move up into the 11.6 inch screen range. I don't know if that move makes sense - the 10 inch screen on a netbook is the perfect blend of size and readability, and when I look at the 12 inch screen on the dv2 I see it as a laptop that's not that much smaller than the my XPS M1330. Although maybe this means the Vivienne Tam computer won't be a netbook at all - maybe it will be part of a new line of Windows 7-based notebook computers. Want to see more? Lots more pics at the HP Flickr page.

Friday, August 7, 2009

The "Back to School: Better Together" Contest

Posted by Jason Dunn in "Digital Home Events" @ 09:00 AM

"Thanks to HP, Microsoft and Timbuk2 we put together a great prize bundle that we are sure has everything you need to perform well at school. This promotion is supported by 25 websites - and each of these has a prize bundle to giveaway. Each prize bundle comes with two laptops, software and a custom bag: 25 of those bundles, 25 winners, all up for grabs throughout August 2009."

Who doesn't like free stuff? Each of the 25 Web sites involved (which doesn't include us unfortunately) will be giving away a prize package that consists of an HP dv6, an HP Mini 110, and a custom Timbuk2 bag. The first contest will start on August 12th, so check out the site for more details.

Monday, July 27, 2009

HP Launches "You on You" Contest, $300K in Cash and Prizes Up for Grabs

Posted by Jason Dunn in "Digital Home Events" @ 04:53 PM

"HP Friday announced the HP You on You project, a contest on YouTube that invites entrants from around the world to create and share videos that express who they are - without showing their faces. The contest uses new video creation tools on YouTube, including improved video remixing and webcam video tools, to allow people of all skill levels to submit videos that run the gamut from comedies to mini-biographies and documentaries, and showcase their individual passions, causes and creative gifts. Running through Aug. 30, the contest offers the opportunity for contestants to win more than $300,000 in cash and prizes from HP. The contest is an extension of HP's award-winning "The PC Is Personal Again" campaign, which features achievers including Shaun White, Serena Williams and Fergie discussing what they do with their HP PCs in a series of "Hands" commercials that don't show their faces."

Feeling creative? Got a video camera or Web cam? Go for it and win some prizes!

Tags: youtube, event, contest, hp

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Samsung's CLX-3175 Colour Laser Multi-Function Printer: Not a Good Choice

Posted by Jason Dunn in "Digital Home Printing" @ 07:00 AM

Late last year, I did a bit of office re-configuration, and retired my old Canon MP780 inkjet all-in-one in favour of something that would get the old "dried out ink cartridge" problem, and something that had a lower cost per-page. That something was a colour laser multi-function printer.

I had a specific space for the printer, and since most of them are quite large, I was seeking something as small as possible. The Samsung CLX-3175 fit the bill: it printed, scanned, faxed, and was much smaller than any competing product. It fit exactly where I needed it to fit, so I thought I was all set. It didn't turn out that well in the end.

The first problem when I set it up and did a test print was the horrible stench - I'm used to laser printers being a little oderous, but this was extreme. Thankfully, after a few days it lessened to the point where it was tolerable. What wasn't tolerable, however, was the print quality of the CLX-3175. The first sample print I did looked awful - the colours were horribly washed out. I thought perhaps I had it set on some sort of draft mode, but after triple-checking every driver checkbox and drop-down menu there was, I couldn't see any way to improve the quality. Read more...

Thursday, June 25, 2009

HP Offering Free Windows 7 Upgrades on New Computers, Starting June 26th

Posted by Jason Dunn in "Digital Home News" @ 10:30 AM

"HP today announced it will offer the Microsoft Windows 7 operating system on consumer and business PCs beginning Oct. 22. To meet customers' computing needs while protecting their investments, the company is participating in the Windows Upgrade Option Program to help customers transition easily to Windows 7. The program will enable customers who purchase qualifying HP PCs to enjoy the benefits of a new Windows-based PC immediately and receive a free upgrade to Windows 7 when it becomes available in October."

That pretty much says it all right there - if you're thinking about ordering an HP computer, wait until tomorrow, and you'll get a free upgrade to Windows 7 when it ships in October 22nd.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

HP Goes Professional with the Mini 5101

Posted by Jason Dunn in "Digital Home Hardware & Accessories" @ 09:07 AM

"HP today unveiled its top-of-the-line Mini PC for on-the-go professionals who demand a stylish, yet durable fully functional companion PC. The HP Mini 5101 features a sturdy, lightweight anodized aluminum display enclosure with a black, brushed finish. Complementing the aluminum is the use of magnesium alloy in the lower case of the Mini frame. Soft-touch paint on the base and palm rest further advance the PC's look and feel. This combination of materials, an industry first in the netbook category, not only delivers an eye-catching design, but also improves durability."

I thought that the HP Mini 2140 was HP's "professional" netbook? Guess not. The HP Mini 5140, being released in July, starts at $449 and features a completely different look and feel from previous "Mini" branded HP netbooks. The keyboard looks like the Macbook keyboard, with clearly seperated keys. The trackpad features buttons on the bottom, not the left and right, and this is the first netbook I've heard of to feature a 7200 RPM hard drive. That should give it some snap - and the optional 1366 x 768 resolution will make it better than your average netbook at accessing browser-based content. Engadget has some further details and some hands-on photos worth checking out.

Friday, June 19, 2009

HP Pavilion dv2 Unboxing and First Impressions

Posted by Jason Dunn in "Digital Home Hardware & Accessories" @ 11:00 AM

This is an unboxing and first impressions video of the HP Pavilion dv2 notebook (the dv2z-1199us) in moonlight white. This thin and light notebook from HP, running Windows Vista Home Premium 64-bit, features the AMD Turion Neo X2 Dual-Core CPU (1.6 Ghz, 1 MB L2 cache), a 320 GM 5400 RPM hard drive, 4 GB of RAM, an external Blu-ray ROM/DVD burner drive, a 1.3 megapixel Web cam, 12.1 inch WXGA (1280 x 800) BrightView screen, 512MB ATI Mobility Radeon HD 3410 GPU, 802.11a/b/g/n WiFi, 5-in-1 memory card reader, and powered by a 6-cell battery. Read more...

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Why Do Big Companies Educate Their Customers So Poorly?

Posted by Jason Dunn in "Digital Home Talk" @ 07:00 AM

The above is a screen shot taken from, using their online tool for comparing Harmony remotes. This tool is designed to allow potential customers to select the Harmony remote that will work best for them. But why is it then that the two remotes, one nearly double the price of the other (The 510 street price is $99), come up as identical in the comparison tool? Is Logitech really trying to sell a remote for twice as much that doesn't do anything different than the less expensive one? It turns out, no, they're not - but it sure looks that way, doesn't it?

I did a bit of research on my own and discovered that the 670 model has PVR-specific controls, while the 510 model does not. This is a pretty important fact for a customer to know, since I'm willing to bet a very high percentage of people buying a Harmony remote own a PVR. So why isn't that listed as a difference between the two products? Logitech is doing a poor job of educating buyers on the differences between their products here, and they're certainly not alone. The online computer-ordering process is among the worst offenders at putting choices in front of the customer and doing a horrible job at explaining what those choices actually mean. Read more...

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

HP MediaSmart Server LX195 Goes Live

Posted by Hooch Tan in "Digital Home News" @ 01:30 PM

"We gave you the early scoop on the single drive, Intel Atom powered LX195 and now the folks at HP have refreshed their MediaSmart Server page with an overview, gallery, and detailed specs on the product."

I'm guessing that either HP thinks their MediaSmart EX series servers are not selling enough, or they're trying to increase sales, because they've now released the LX195. Sporting an Atom processor, 1GB of memory and a 640GB hard drive, it definitely is a cut back version of a Windows Home Server. Still, I would much rather go for one of the EX models as they offer more expandability and capabilities. The only way I could add more storage to the LX195 would be with external drives, and that does not seem to be the most ideal solution for me. Also, the Atom, as admirable as it is, would severely limit what add-ons I could put on the server, which pretty much make me think of the LX195 as an expensive NAS.

Friday, April 10, 2009

HP’s Pavilion dv2 Tested

Posted by Chris Gohlke in "Digital Home Hardware & Accessories" @ 03:00 AM

"We got up close and personal with HP’s Pavilion dv2, the first notebook with AMD’s Neo processor, at CES. But now we have one to play with, and it looks like this ultraportable will have a lot of appeal for buyers looking for something more stylish, comfortable, and powerful than a typical netbook. But is it worth $749?"

I'm straying towards the not worth it end. Sure it has more power than a typical netbook, but for the average user, netbooks provide adequate power. And at double the price of most netbooks, I don't see the value.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

HP Pavilion dv3z is Happily Middle of the Road

Posted by Chris Gohlke in "Digital Home Hardware & Accessories" @ 09:00 PM,281...2129TX1K0000530

"Affordable and lightweight laptops are few and far between: You'd have to settle for either a netbook or a desktop replacement laptop in order to spend less than $1,000. I'd like to see more systems that don't skimp on screen real estate yet are still relatively light, in the range of 4 to 5 pounds. The HP Pavilion dv3z ($980 direct), a 13-inch lightweight beauty, easily meets these criteria while keeping prices in the three-digit range. The only catch is that you'll have to settle for AMD parts, which, unfortunately, aren't as fast as their Intel counterparts. If your workloads are as light as this system, however, performance shouldn't matter."

This is the sweet spot for a lot of users. If you are looking for small, but not too small and need some power, but not too much power, and need something inexpensive, but not super inexpensive, then you are the target market.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Real World Reviews: The Vivienne Tam HP Mini 1000

Posted by Jason Dunn in "Digital Home Hardware & Accessories" @ 07:00 AM

This is a new type of review that I'm experimenting with - rather than me doing an exhaustive review of a product, I'm giving a a product to someone else for a couple of weeks and asking them about their experience using it. I think there's a lot of value in real-world testing of products by people who aren't experts, because as much as I try to put on my "Everyman Hat" when I'm testing a product, I still carry bias with me. In this case, it was my wife Ashley who was given the HP Mini 1000 Vivienne Tam Edition netbook to use over a period of a month, because, hey, it's made for women so who better to test it?

Q: Let's start with first impressions. What did you think of the HP Mini 1000 Vivienne Tam Edition when you first saw it?

A: I loved it! I had no idea that any laptop companies had even thought of partnering with world class designers to make the laptops they were selling more aesthetically appealing to their customers - specifically women. Everywhere I take my HP Mini, I get tons of compliments and people asking me what it is and where I got it! It's definitely a great conversation piece.

Q: So beyond the initial impact of the design and colour, what did you think of the size and weight?

A: Again, I love this about it: it's so small, light and compact. I could put it in my purse and carry it with me to a meeting if I needed to. The only downside is the comparatively huge power brick and cables. With such a small device, it would sure be nice to have an equally small power brick! Read more...

Sunday, March 15, 2009

6-cell Battery Goodness Now Available for HP Mini 1000

Posted by Chris Gohlke in "Digital Home Hardware & Accessories" @ 06:00 PM

"You may still not be able to get that VGA adapter, but it looks like HP Mini 1000 users can now finally get their hands on the six-cell battery for the netbook, which should provide a significant boost over the stock three-cell battery. As you may recall, this follows a brief spat of seeming availability in January but, judging from some of the responses on the HP Mini forums, it looks like HP has since canceled the few orders that got through before the battery was pulled from its site."

I'm guessing but the shape of the bump on the battery, that it will boost the rear of the laptop along with boosting your battery life. Looks like it is currently available for $95.99. If you use coupon code SV2130, you should be able to lop an extra $10 off of that.

Friday, March 13, 2009

The Ravishing Red Netbook: HP's Vivienne Tam Edition Mini 1000

Posted by Jason Dunn in "Digital Home Hardware & Accessories" @ 02:52 PM

This is my video review of the HP Mini 1000 Vivienne Tam Edition netbook. Since the hardware and design of the laptop (other than the colour) is identical to the HP Mini 1000, please check out my HP Mini 1000 unboxing and first impressions video for my thoughts on that part of the experience. Just like the top-end HP Mini 1000, the Vivienne Tam edition runs Windows XP SP3, and in the configuration I was sent, costs $724 USD directly from HP. It has an Intel 1.6 Ghz Atom CPU, 1 GB of RAM, a 60 GB 4200 RPM hard drive, an SDHC card reader, two USB ports, 802.11 b/g WiFi, Bluetooth, and a 3-cell battery. Watch for an upcoming written Q&A interview with person who has the most experience using this netbook: my wife!

Jason Dunn owns and operates Thoughts Media Inc., a company dedicated to creating the best in online communities. He enjoys photography, mobile devices, blogging, digital media content creation/editing, and pretty much all technology. He lives in Calgary, Alberta, Canada with his lovely wife, and his sometimes obedient dog.

Do you enjoy using new hardware, software and accessories, then sharing your experience with others? Then join us on the Thoughts Media Review Team! We're looking for individuals who find it fun to test new gear and give their honest opinions about the experience. It's a volunteer role with some great perks. Interested? Then click here for more information.

Friday, February 27, 2009

HP Pavilion dv2 Ultra-thin Notebook

Posted by Chris Gohlke in "Digital Home Hardware & Accessories" @ 05:00 PM

"In the background of all the netbook debate, AMD quietly announced the “Yukon” platform for ultrathin notebooks. We wanted to provide something different, something more. We wanted to provide a rich entertainment experience at an affordable price. So when I got the chance to play with a real, live Yukon-based, HP Pavilion dv2 Entertainment ultrathin notebook, of course I jumped on it, and wanted to share those experiences with you. Because the unit is a prototype sample and isn’t expected to be released until March, I won’t be able to share everything with you, but I will share as much as I can."

Looks like a sweet competitor for the Macbook Air. Come on though HP, there is more gloss on that thing than on an 80's hair band. I know this looks great in the press pictures and on the shelf, but after 10 minutes of use, they end up looking filthy.

HP's Big and Bold HDX X18 Laptop Reviewed

Posted by Jason Dunn in "Digital Home Hardware & Accessories" @ 07:00 AM

This my video review of the HP HDX X18-1058ca, the big and beautiful desktop-replacement laptop from HP. If you haven't watched my unboxing video, be sure to check that out first. This laptop features an 18.4 inch, 1920 x 1080 (1080p), 16 by 9 aspect ratio screen, and weighs in at 8.9 pounds (4.06 kg). It features an Intel Core 2 Duo P8400 CPU (2.26 GHz, 3 MB L2 Cache, 1066 MHz FSB ), 4 GB of DDR2 RAM, a 320 GB 5400 RPM SATA drive, a LightScribe Blu-Ray ROM with SuperMulti DVD±R/RW Double Layer, Integrated 10/100/1000 Gigabit Ethernet, Intel WiFi Link 5100AGN (that's 802.11a/g/n), four USB ports, an ExpressCard 54 slot, and a 512MB NVIDIA GeForce 9600M GT graphics card. Priced on February 3rd at, the laptop would cost $1363.99 USD. This exact model number is only available in Canada where it was available for $1599.99 CAD as a holiday special and at this point it's not being offered any more. The more commonly available version, currently offered from Best Buy Canada, is the HDX X18-1180ca, which is a quad-core CPU model and sells for $2199 CAD. Read more...

Thursday, February 26, 2009

UMPC Portal's Long-Term Impressions of the HP Mini Mi

Posted by Jason Dunn in "Digital Home Articles & Resources" @ 07:00 AM

"It has definitely been an interesting testing experience with the Mini 1000 MIE. The netbook, as you have probably read, runs a custom Ubuntu interface designed by HP. They call it the Mobile Internet Edition of the Mini 1000. I am anything but a Linux pro, so I approached this as a newcomer to Linux. Luckily, HP is marketing the Mini 1000 MIE to less experienced computer users and not Linux pros. I gave you my initial software impressions not too long ago, but I'm ready to give you some more detailed information."

I've been using the Mini Mi for a couple of weeks now, and I have mixed feelings about it, some of which are echoed in this article. It's definitely a slick interface, but underneath it's still Linux, which isn't the most usable operating system in the world. I'm continuing my tests, and will probably do a video review of what HP has done with the Mobile Internet Edition software. One of the issues I've seen, mentioned in this article, is performance. The "common wisdom" is that Windows is bloated and slow, while Linux is lean and fast. You'd never know that using the HP Mini Mi - there are screen redraw issues galore, and a general feeling of sluggish performance - and this is with 2 GB of RAM installed. Now it may be that the target market for the Mini Mi - general consumers who want an Internet-focused device - might not notice these issues, but I can't shake the feeling that the software wasn't designed for the hardware.

Sunday, February 15, 2009

HP Mini 2140 Webcam a Huge Improvement Over the Mini 1000

Posted by Chris Gohlke in "Digital Home Hardware & Accessories" @ 10:00 PM

"I’m a big fan of the HP Mini 1000 and it earned our first Editor’s Choice award, but the quality of its built-in webcam is a weak point. The Mini 2140 has a similarly spec’d webcam, but it delivers a dramatically better image than the one found in the Mini 1000. The Mini 1000’s webcam has a dark filter in front of it that doesn’t let enough light through."

If the only difference between the 1000 and 2140 cameras is the filter, then it is pretty obvious that the filter makes a huge difference. However, I'm curious if HP actually included a better quality, if similarly spec'd camera in the 2140.

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