HP Compaq 6910p review

£1157
Price when reviewed

From the outside, this HP doesn’t look like a candidate for an award this month. It isn’t particularly attractive, clad in grey and black, and doesn’t have the extras such as the Toshiba X200’s Harmon Kardon speakers and HD DVD drive.

HP Compaq 6910p review

If you’re after something more solid for your money, however, you could do worse than choose the 6910p. Its main strength lies in its core spec, with a 2.2GHz processor and 2GB of 667MHz RAM leading to an impressive score of 1.14 in our 2D benchmarks.

We were also impressed with the 6910p’s ergonomics. The keyboard is fabulous – well laid out with responsive keys – and the touchpad features light and easy-to-press buttons and the added option of using the trackpoint controls. Build quality is top-notch, too, with decent protection for the screen and rigid-feeling plastics all round.

Even if you intend on doing lots of work on the move, the 6910p does pretty well. It isn’t the smallest on test, but it’s hardly a shoulder-wrencher at 2.3kg. And, in addition to Bluetooth, 802.11ag and infrared, the 6910p sports an HSDPA adaptor, allowing wireless connection to the internet of up to 3.6Mb/sec. Battery life is average, however, with only a middling three hours of life under light use.

If you hadn’t noticed already, this isn’t an entertainment machine: the ATi Mobility Radeon X1400 certainly won’t get you playing modern games at decent frame rates. But as a work-based laptop it has more notable credentials. On top of the aforementioned HSDPA adapter, there’s a fingerprint reader and TPM 1.2 chip for secure login and storage of network keys and passwords. You also get a smart card reader for added protection, gigabit Ethernet and a three-year collect-and-return warranty.

There’s no denying that this notebook is pretty sober in comparison with some other £1,000+ notebooks here, but that doesn’t make it a bad option. In fact, its sound ergonomics and powerful core components make it a viable alternative to the big entertainment notebooks.

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