Hewlett-Packard Australia Compaq Presario V3230
- Slick and trendy design, multimedia features
- Short battery life
The Presario V3000 is an attractively sleek and compact notebook slightly let down by its less-than-stellar battery life. However, for those who value design and portability over beefy specs, it remains an affordable and worthy purchase.
Price$ 1,499.00 (AUD)
Following in the footsteps of Sony's hip VAIO range, HP's Compaq Presario V3230 is clearly aimed at the fashion-conscious who want to look cool while updating their spreadsheets. With an ultra glossy, subtly pinstriped finish and an assortment of classy LED lights, it's certainly one of the more stylish notebooks we've seen in a while. In addition to inducing envy, the slick casing also offers extra protection - according to HP, the V3230's 'in-mould' lamination wards against scratches and general wear, ensuring its face will stay forever young. While we can't attest to its durability, it certainly looks the business.
Sticking to the same basic script as its predecessor model (the Presario V2000), the V3230 offers a commendable array of features, ports and components for the asking price. The dual-core Turion 64 X2 1.60GHz CPU, 1GB of DDR2 RAM, 5-in-1 memory card reader (SD/MS/MS-Pro/MMC/xD) and LightScribe Super Multi 8x DVD writer should fulfil the needs of most multimedia enthusiasts. In terms of processing speed, HP's latest offering holds up quite well. We encoded 53 minutes of WAV files to 192Kbps MP3 files to test the system's performance, which clocked in at two minutes 38 seconds. While this isn't hugely impressive, it is still an acceptable result based on the hardware.
The desirable aesthetics are capped off by a deceptively compact design. At 334 x 237 x 39 mm and a little over 2 kg, this is one notebook you'll have no trouble fitting into a carry bag or briefcase. Despite these economic dimensions, the screen and keyboard layout are pleasingly large and spacious. Typing is an intuitive typo-free zone - even for those afflicted with unwieldy sausage-sized fingers - while the 14.1 inch widescreen LCD display is equally suited to both business and pleasure.
Indeed, we were particularly impressed with the image quality while watching DVDs; especially when viewing the screen at sharp angles. The integrated Altec Lansing speakers proved to be a fitting match, offering crisp and robust audio without the need for earphones. Further boosting the notebook's multimedia leanings are a series of touch-sensitive quick-launch buttons, which allow you to quickly mute or adjust volume on the fly. (The backlit LED buttons even change colour when you press them, which is a nice - if pointless - feature.)
Our only reservation with the V3230's overall design is its lid, which lacks a lockable clasp. While this isn't a huge deal, it can potentially cause accidents while lugging your notebook around in a clutter-filled bag, which is something to be mindful of. Latch-less lids are great for quick one-handed access, but even this isn't easily done due to the taught hinges.
Gaming buffs will be left cold by the underpowered graphics chip. In our 3D Mark 2001 SE test, the Compaq Presario V3230 scored 28727, which rules out the majority of modern 3D games, though it will run older games reasonably well.
To test the battery life, we ran a looped DVD on the optical drive, which simulates a worst-case scenario. (The test is considered worst case because the optical drive and speakers help drain the battery, as well as the core components like the CPU and RAM.) The system held out for 95 minutes - just enough to get you through a feature film if you're lucky.
Join the PC World newsletter!
Most Popular Reviews
- 1 Samsung Galaxy S8 phone: full, in-depth review
- 2 Ryzen 5 vs Intel Core i5 CPU Australian review
- 3 Mass Effect Andromeda review: One for the fans
- 4 LG G6 phone: full, in-depth review
- 5 Samsung Galaxy A5 2017 phone: Full, in-depth review
Latest News Articles
- Windows 10's power-throttling feature will benefit battery-hungry laptops
- Microsoft's next Surface may be a Chromebook competitor for schools
- US says laptop ban may expand to more airports
- Intel's Cannonlake PC chip shipments may slip into next year
- Razer’s updated Blade Pro is the first ever THX-certified laptop
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 S8 phone: full, in-depth review
- Ryzen 5 vs Intel Core i5 CPU Australian review
- Mass Effect Andromeda review: One for the fans
- What's the difference between an Intel Core i3, i5 and i7?
- Laser vs. inkjet printers: which is better?
- FTSenior C# DeveloperNSW
- CCSystems Administrator - Cloud, Azure and LinuxQLD
- TPStrategic Business AnalystVIC
- FTField Engineer - Hardware RolloutsNSW
- CC1st / 2nd Level Help Desk SupportNSW
- TPBusiness Analyst | HealthcareQLD
- TPRegional Level 2/3 Desktop Support AnalystVIC
- FTInfrastructure Project Manager Office 365 ImplementationVIC
- FTJava Team LeadVIC
- FTBI BA Consultant l Microstrategy, Business ObjectsNSW
- FTPERMANENT Business AnalystsWA
- CCTechnical Consultant - ITSM/HP Service ManagerQLD
- CCTechnical Consultant - ITSM/HP Service ManagerACT
- TPAgile Project Manager. Lean ProductivityNSW
- FTProject Manager (Office 365 / Mobility)QLD
- FTFinance AnalystNSW
- FTBusiness Development ManagerACT
- TPSoftware Licensing SpecialistNSW
- FTService Desk - Level 1 SupportVIC
- FTICT Relationship Manager - Service Delivery EnvironmentNSW
- CCTibco Integration Specialist l Port MacquarieNSW
- FTCRM Technical Specialist (Oracle Eloqua)ACT
- CCSenior Business AnalystSA
- CCSenior Project OfficerNSW