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HP Envy 14 Spectre review

An Ultrabook bigger, bulkier and Beats-ier than its rivals

HP envy 14 spectre review

Shunning the aluminium silver outer design favoured by other Ultrabooks such as the Dell XPS 13 or the Acer Aspire S3, the HP Envy 14 Spectre boasts a black Gorilla Glass lid with a slick, glossy finish. Adding the final touch is the bright HP logo nestled in the corner.

Although it looks great, the inevitable downside is that the surface of the lid will quickly attract dust and smudgy fingerprints - more so than any other Ultrabook we've seen.

A backlit, isolation-style keyboard lurks underneath, and is one of the most comfortable we've used on an Ultrabook. The greater depth of the chassis gives a better travel to the keys, and the result is comfy typing all day long.

HP envy 14 spectre review

A neat trick is the ability of the keyboard to sense your proximity, and dim itself when you move away from the laptop, saving power.

Of course, any discussion of the Spectre's features starts and ends with the Beats audio. The speakers do a decent job of producing a rich, full sound - but slap a pair of Beats headphones on and you're ready to experience the best sound we've heard from an Ultrabook since the Bang & Olufsen-packing Asus Zenbook UX31.

Anyone who has used any of HP's other laptops, including the Envy and Pavilion ranges, will be at home with the extra choice Beats gives you.

You can open up a control panel to tweak all aspects of the Envy 14 Spectre's audio performance. There are also several bonus modes to take advantage of, such as noise and echo cancellation.

HP envy 14 spectre review

The HP Envy 14 Spectre also features a small Beats-branded clickwheel on the chassis that enables you to quickly alter the volume of the speakers.

Arguably, the HP Envy 14 Spectre's 14-inch screen should get as much praise as the Beats audio. The 1600 x 900 pixel resolution is a step up from other Ultrabooks such as the Lenovo IdeaPad U300S, and we marvelled at the crystal clear high-definition visuals.

Not only that, but the HP Envy 14 Spectre has a tiny bezel, allowing the 14-inch screen to sit nicely inside a 13.3-inch chassis.

Tech Specs

Product TypeNotebook
Green CompliantYes
Processor ManufacturerIntel
Graphics Controller ManufacturerIntel
Graphics Controller ModelHD 3000
BluetoothYes
Wireless LANYes
Graphics Memory AccessibilityShared
Maximum Battery Run Time9 Hour
Solid State Drive Capacity128 GB
HDMIYes
WebcamYes
Backlight TechnologyLED
Product FamilyEnvy Spectre 14-3000
Operating System Architecture64-bit
Keyboard BacklightYes
Processor Modeli5-2467M
ColourNatural Silver
Operating SystemWindows 7 Home Premium
Brand NameHP
Processor Speed1.60 GHz
Processor TypeCore i5
Screen Size35.6 cm (14")
Number of Cells4-cell
Screen Resolution1600 x 900
Standard Memory4 GB
Weight (Approximate)1.80 kg
Cache3 MB
Processor CoreDual-core (2 Core)
Green Compliance Certificate/AuthorityENERGY STAR, EPEAT Silver
64-bit ProcessingYes
Chipset ManufacturerIntel
Chipset ModelHM65 Express
Display Screen TypeActive Matrix TFT Colour LCD
Display Screen TechnologyBrightView
Wireless LAN StandardIEEE 802.11 a/g/n
Ethernet TechnologyGigabit Ethernet
Total Number of USB Ports2
Height20 mm
Width327 mm
Depth221 mm
Screen ModeHD+
Memory TechnologyDDR3 SDRAM
Product Series14-3000
ManufacturerHewlett-Packard
Product Model14-3000ea
Product NameEnvy Spectre 14-3000ea Notebook
Pointing Device TypeImagePad
Product LineEnvy Spectre
Aspect Ratio16:9
Manufacturer Part NumberB1J91EA#ABU
Manufacturer Website Addresshttp://www.hp.com/uk
Marketing Information

When we crafted the new HP ENVY 14 SPECTRE we pushed the boundaries of design and engineering. The seamless integration of an incredible tough and lightweight glass brings a cool and sophisticated look. Designed for those who expect the extraordinary.

Unique design

Thin, lightweight, made of both metal and strong, scratch resistant glass - doesn't weigh you down.

Live life in HD

Watching videos on the HD radiance display, or talking to friends via the HP TrueVision HD webcam: there's high definition everywhere.

Maximum Memory4 GB
Battery ChemistryLithium Ion (Li-Ion)
Package Contents
  • Envy Spectre 14-3000ea Notebook
  • Lithium Ion Battery
  • AC Adapter
  • Notebook Protective Sleeve
  • Limited Warranty1 Year