Hewlett-Packard Australia Pavilion dv9800 (dv9821tx)

For work or play, this notebook is great

  • Review
  • Specs
  • Images
  • User Reviews
  • Buy Now 1
Hewlett-Packard Australia Pavilion dv9800 (dv9821tx)
  • Hewlett-Packard Australia Pavilion dv9800 (dv9821tx)
  • Hewlett-Packard Australia Pavilion dv9800 (dv9821tx)
  • Hewlett-Packard Australia Pavilion dv9800 (dv9821tx)

Pros

  • Blu-ray drive, HDMI, strong processor performance

Cons

  • Screen not full high definition, weak graphics card

Bottom Line

For users wanting a home entertainment centre or a powerful desktop replacement to work with, the dv9800 is a very strong contender.

Would you buy this?

  • Buy now (Selling at 1 store)

The HP Pavilion dv9800 is a feature-packed unit that is hard to fault. Fitted with the latest networking options and a Blu-ray player with HDMI-output, it's a versatile option both for home entertainment and business productivity.

Those familiar with the Pavilion series of notebooks will quickly recognise the dv9800's design. The HP Pavilion dv6000 (dv6614TX) and Pavilion tx2011AU Entertainment Notebook PC both have very similar cover art.

On the unit's right-hand side a Blu-ray drive provides users with the latest disc format compatibility: it will burn to CDs and DVDs, and it will play Blu-ray movies.

While the optical drive is able to play 1080p Blu-ray movies, the 17in screen has a native resolution of 1440x900. This results in down-scaling and doesn't allow for the full potential of high-definition films to be appreciated on the device itself. The screen also suffers from reflectivity in well-lit environments and has a limited viewing angle from above.

Fortunately the notebook comes with an HDMI port, which allows easy connectivity to televisions capable of displaying a 1080p signal. D-Sub and S-Video ports, which are located on the left-hand side, allow a monitor or older TV to be connected. These ports, coupled with good performance in our benchmarks, make the dv9800 stand out as a potential home entertainment centre.

In our WorldBench 6 benchmark, the dv9800 returned an excellent result of 95. Running multiple applications simultaneously, as well as intensive tasks like video encoding, is easy. Our iTunes test, where we convert 53min worth of WAV files into 192Kbps MP3s, also highlighted the processor's speed by performing the task in 1min 11sec.

The notebook gets its speed from a 2.5GHz Intel Core 2 Duo T9300 processor and it features 3GB of DDR2 RAM. A 320GB hard drive is installed, and it spins at 5400rpm. It provides plenty of space for users to play with. Meanwhile, those wanting a little more graphical grunt will appreciate the NVIDIA GeForce 8400M GS, which will be fine for games that aren't too graphics intensive, but will struggle with newer, and even some older titles.

This was reinforced in 3DMark06, where it only achieved a score of 1626. This means modern games like Crysis won't run at all, and even older DirectX 9-based games like F.E.A.R. will barely operate.

The notebook is comfortable to use: users will enjoy the responsive, full-sized keyboard and number pad. A fingerprint reader sits below the keyboard on the right palm rest; it's a convenient security option for those who want to do away with their login password.

The drawback of the full-sized keyboard and 17in screen is the lack of portability. Those hoping to use this device on the go probably will be thwarted by its 3.5kg weight. With its power adapter included, the total package comes to 4kg. It's definitely a stay-at-home notebook.

A set of Altec Lansing speakers offer excellent clarity, but suffer from a lack of bass. There is a line out option for connecting the notebook to a receiver, and two headphone ports are available for private listening. Other sound options include a microphone port and a built-in array microphone that surrounds the webcam above the screen.

Our DVD rundown benchmark, which simulates a worst-case scenario for battery life, returned a time of 1hr 36min. This isn't too bad for such a big notebook; however due to its size it will probably rarely be used far from a power point.

For network connectivity, the dv9800 has all the latest options: Gigabit Ethernet, 802.11 a/g/n and a 56Kbps modem. Also included is a FireWire port, a five-in-one card reader (SD, MS, MSPro, MMC, xD) and an ExpressCard/54 slot, which provides a good avenue for expansion.

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Be the first to comment.

Post new comment

Users posting comments agree to the PC World comments policy.

Login or register to link comments to your user profile, or you may also post a comment without being logged in.

Most Popular Reviews

Follow Us

Best Deals on GoodGearGuide

Shopping.com

Latest News Articles

Resources

GGG Evaluation Team

Kathy Cassidy

STYLISTIC Q702

First impression on unpacking the Q702 test unit was the solid feel and clean, minimalist styling.

Anthony Grifoni

STYLISTIC Q572

For work use, Microsoft Word and Excel programs pre-installed on the device are adequate for preparing short documents.

Steph Mundell

LIFEBOOK UH574

The Fujitsu LifeBook UH574 allowed for great mobility without being obnoxiously heavy or clunky. Its twelve hours of battery life did not disappoint.

Andrew Mitsi

STYLISTIC Q702

The screen was particularly good. It is bright and visible from most angles, however heat is an issue, particularly around the Windows button on the front, and on the back where the battery housing is located.

Simon Harriott

STYLISTIC Q702

My first impression after unboxing the Q702 is that it is a nice looking unit. Styling is somewhat minimalist but very effective. The tablet part, once detached, has a nice weight, and no buttons or switches are located in awkward or intrusive positions.

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?