Hewlett-Packard Australia Compaq nc6400
- Good performance, Exceptional battery life, Fingerprint reader.
- Fairly standard design.
The HP Compaq nc6400 performs well with exceptional battery life.
Price$ 2,499.00 (AUD)
Targeted at business users, the Hewlett-Packard Compaq nc6400 forgoes flashy design and high-end graphics capabilities to deliver excellent performance and exceptional battery life at a reasonable price point.
The nc6400 is a 1.83GHz Intel Centrino Duo T2400 based notebook with 512MB of DDR2 RAM (expandable to 4GB), an 80GB hard disk and a dual layer DVD±RW/±R optical drive. There are three USB 2.0 ports, a SmartCard slot, SD and MMC memory card reader, headphone/microphone ports and 15-pin D-sub output to connect an external monitor. Networking options include a dial up 56Kbps modem, a Broadcom NetXtreme Gigabit (10/100/1000Mbps) PCI Express Ethernet controller and an Intel PRO/Wireless 3945ABG 802.11 a/b/g WLAN. Bluetooth 2.0 and Infra-red wireless are also included.
The display is a 14.1in (diagonally) widescreen LCD with a maximum resolution of 1280 x 800 that easily handles office applications. The panel has an anti-glare finish rather than the increasingly popular glossy designs we have reviewed of late which is great for working under fluorescent office lights. The vertical viewing angle is reasonable, although it could have been better as colour shift occurs at around 35-40 degrees. There is no backlight bleeding and the colours are bright and vibrant.
The HP is also equipped with a biometric security fingerprint scanner which worked well. In addition to using the scanner to log in to windows, you can also register your fingerprints to replace any program where passwords are required for authentication. The included security management software worked well in this regard.
Like the Lenovo ThinkPad series, this notebook comes with a blue "pointstick" which can be used in place of a mouse. It is located in the middle of the keyboard and we found the default settings to be a little too sensitive. Slightly touching the pointing device sends it careening across the screen. We turned down the sensitivity but it was still over-sensitive and hard to use accurately. Compared to other notebooks with similar pointing devices, the "pointstick" was below par. The nc6400 also comes with a touchpad that includes scroll zones that make web navigation much easier. The mouse buttons are a little unusual as they are made from a rubberised material which we have not seen in many notebooks and offered very little resistance when pressed. We found the design to be quite functional although they did take some getting used to.
Aesthetically, the nc6400 exhibits nothing remarkable. Both the exterior and interior are finished in a gun metal grey plastic which extends to the bezel of the display. The keyboard is a slightly darker, charcoal colour and has an almost porous finish. We weren't particularly taken by the design as we found it plain and felt it lacked a level of sophistication often found in notebooks targeted at business users.
We tested the overall performance and it achieved a very respectable World Bench 5 score of 90, which is above average for a notebook at these specifications. We weren't expecting anything fabulous from the graphics processor in this unit as it is an ATI Mobility Radeon X1300 with 256MB of RAM, but it showed reasonable performance under 3DMark 2001 with a score of 9308. This is not suitable for playing modern games but should be more than adequate for older games or graphically demanding software such as image editing.
The HP Compaq nc6400 has a 55Whr six-cell lithium-ion battery which lasted 299 minutes during our MobileMark 2002 productivity test. When playing back DVDs we found this was reduced a little to 201 minutes. This is an excellent result and will be more than adequate for business use or watching the odd DVD.
The 2kg weight of the HP compares well and it is small enough to fit in a messenger bag or even under the arm. It is also fairly quiet - the only noise coming from the optical drive when in use, and we noticed no instances of excessive heat during our testing.
While the design does not make this notebook stand out from the crowd, the HP Compaq nc6400 is a good quality notebook at a reasonable price. The machine is not suited to sophisticated graphics work or high-end games, it did score well in our performance tests and offers quite impressive battery life.
Join the PC World newsletter!
Linksys AC5400 MU-MIMO Gigabit router
Samsung portable 1TB T3 drive
Lexar® JumpDrive® S57 USB 3.0 flash drive
Epson WorkForce ET-4550
Smart LED Bulb LB130
UE Boom 2 Bluetooth speaker
Microsoft L5V-00027 Sculpt Ergonomic Keyboard Desktop
Everki ContemPRO Roll Top Laptop Backpack
Huawei Mate 9
Lexar® JumpDrive® S45 USB 3.0 flash drive
Acer Swift 7
Epson WorkForce DS-360W
Google Daydream VR headset
Lexar® Portable SSD
Logitech G403 Prodigy mouse
Belkin MIXIT Metallic Lightning to USB Cable
3SIXT Ultra HD Sports Action Camera
Blade 28 backpack by Arc’teryx
HP Pavilion x360 13”
Surface Pro 4
Lexar® Professional 1800x microSDHC™/microSDXC™ UHS-II cards
Dell Inspiron 5000 series 2-in-1
Dell XPS 13 laptop
Garmin Fenix Chronos smartwatch
Audio-Technica ATH-ANC70 Noise Cancelling Headphones
Lexar® JumpDrive® C20c USB Type-C flash drive
HD Pan/Tilt Wi-Fi Camera with Night Vision NC450
Most Popular Reviews
- 1 Samsung Galaxy A5 2017 phone: Full, in-depth review
- 2 Oppo R9s Plus phone: Full, in-depth review
- 3 Samsung 2017 QLED Q7 TV: Full, in-depth review
- 4 HTC U Ultra phone full, in-depth review
- 5 Gigabyte Aorus GA-AX370-Gaming 5 AMD Ryzen AM4 motherboard review
Latest News Articles
- Razer’s updated Blade Pro is the first ever THX-certified laptop
- More iPad screen sizes unlikely to stop slump
- Android struggling in tablets as Windows 10 2-in-1s come on strong
- Samsung unveils Galaxy Book, a Windows 10 tablet aimed at the Surface-curious
- Everything we think we know about Samsung’s Galaxy Tab S3
PCW Evaluation Team
A smarter way to print for busy small business owners, combining speedy printing with scanning and copying, making it easier to produce high quality documents and images at a touch of a button.
I've had a multifunction printer in the office going on 10 years now. It was a neat bit of kit back in the day -- print, copy, scan, fax -- when printing over WiFi felt a bit like magic. It’s seen better days though and an upgrade’s well overdue. This HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 looks like it ticks all the same boxes: print, copy, scan, and fax. (Really? Does anyone fax anything any more? I guess it's good to know the facility’s there, just in case.) Printing over WiFi is more-or- less standard these days.
As a freelance writer who is always on the go, I like my technology to be both efficient and effective so I can do my job well. The HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 Inkjet Printer ticks all the boxes in terms of form factor, performance and user interface.
I’d happily recommend this touchscreen laptop and Windows 10 as a great way to get serious work done at a desk or on the road.
Ultimately, I think the Windows 10 environment is excellent for me as it caters for so many different uses. The inclusion of the Xbox app is also great for when you need some downtime too!
For me, the Xbox Play Anywhere is a great new feature as it allows you to play your current Xbox games with higher resolutions and better graphics without forking out extra cash for another copy. Although available titles are still scarce, but I’m sure it will grow in time.
- Samsung Galaxy A5 2017 phone: Full, in-depth review
- LG G6: unboxing, hands on review and detail shots
- And the 2017 winner of the Formula 1 Best Pit Lane Boom Gantry is...
- What's the difference between an Intel Core i3, i5 and i7?
- Laser vs. inkjet printers: which is better?
- FTSocial Media ExecutiveNSW
- FTKey Account ManagerVIC
- TPBusiness AnalystNSW
- FTAgile CoachACT
- CCApplication Developer - FileNetQLD
- CCAutomation Developer - LinuxNSW
- CCSenior Security AnalystsACT
- CCOrganisational Change Manager - Banking/Financial ServicesNSW
- CCIT Project Scheduler- Port MacquarieQLD
- TPBusiness Change ManagerQLD
- TPEngineer Desktop DevelopmentVIC
- FTLooking for Information Security professional @ CanberraNSW
- CCBusiness Analyst - General InsuranceNSW
- FTTechnical ConsultantACT
- FTInternal Recruitment | $36phVIC
- FTAgile Test AnalystQLD
- FTArcFM/Gis Lead DeveloperNSW
- FTSenior Java EngineerACT
- CCSenior Network Designer - CiscoVIC
- TPSenior SAP Time and Payroll Functional ConsultantQLD
- FTICT Security AnalystQLD
- TPSenior Business Project ManagerNSW
- FTArchitect (Technical)NSW
- FTDevops EngineerVIC
- CCChange ManagerNSW