The HP Envy dv4-5220us 14-Inch Laptop offers powerful computing in a package that is both easily portable and stylishly good looking.
Tucked away inside the linen white case is a 3rd generation Intel Core i5-3210M Processor running at 2.50GHz (up to 3.10GHz with Turbo Boost Technology), 6GB of RAM and a 750GB hard drive. Intel HD graphics 4000 powers the 14 inch, HD BrightView LED-backlit display.
Together, they form the heart of a capable laptop that should take even fairly demanding tasks in its stride. The graphics hardware, while unsuitable for heavy-duty gaming, should be more than capable of handling HD video, some less demanding games and almost any other day-to-day computing task.
Although considerably slower than a modern Solid State Drive (SSD), older hard drive technology has the advantage of not being ruinously expensive for larger capacity drives, and is still more than fast enough for most purposes. The 750GB hard drive in this machine is spacious enough to hold a good selection of music, movies and photos, with plenty of space to spare.
For more conventional movie-watching, software installation or storing your data on DVDs or CDs, this machine is equipped with a SuperMulti DVD burner. Although not, perhaps, as important as they once were, optical drives still have their uses, and their reassuring presence is often missed on the more svelte Ultrabook ranges of machines – to the extent that an external USB optical drive is often purchased with, or soon after, the computer.
- Powerful, easily portable
- Large Hard Disk
- Windows 8
- Underpowered for serious gaming
On this, machine, however, the two supplied USB 3.0 ports, and the one USB 2.0 port, are all available for your use without losing one to an external optical drive.
Along with its USB ports, this machine features an HDMI port for connecting to an HDTV, and a built-in card reader for easily transferring images from your memory cards. It is also WiDi ready, enabling it to wirelessly stream your photos, videos, and other PC content to an HDTV.
Wireless networking is, of course, fully supported in the shape of 802.11 b/g/n, as is Bluetooth connectivity, and the built-in HP TrueVision HD Webcam means the machine is video-chat ready right out of the box – just sign in to your favourite chat software and you’re ready to go!
At just 13.54″ (width) x 9.21″ (depth) x 1.15″—1.32″ (h) in size and weighing 4.79 lbs, this machine is small and light enough to carry around with ease, but that portability is of little use if it needs to be permanently hooked up to a power point. Fortunately, the 6-cell 62WHr lithium-ion battery offers up to 6 hrs, 30 mins of battery life, allowing you to take full advantage of this powerful but portable computer.
The Envy dv4-5220us is supplied with Windows 8, the latest version of Microsoft’s world-famous operating system, so you can be sure that it’s fully capable of using both old and new-style Windows software.
Overall, this laptop is capable of handling most tasks, although it might struggle with more demanding games. If you’re looking for an easily portable, upper mid-range workhorse laptop with a reasonable battery life and a small footprint, it’s definitely worth considering the HP Envy dv4-5220us.