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Should I get the New HP Envy 17?

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May 15, 2010 12:56:12 AM

Hello,
I am a student and an enthuasist computer user, and I am looking for the new HP Envy as replacement for my old HP Pavilion dv5130ca, which I brought back in 2006. However, I am not in a real rush to get one, so I can always wait for big things to come out before making the final decision.

As you might be aware of, HP Envy 17 and Envy 14 are going to release soon on May 19 and June 24 respectively in the U.S. Since Envy 17 fixes most of the Envy 15 problems such as overheating, lack of optical drive and short battery life, overall the Envy 17 seemed like an excellent candidate as my next replacement laptop, but it was then I came across with many struggles and I cannot decide rather I should get it or not. So I am just hoping if you guys can help me out and resolve some of my struggles rather to get the new Envy or not.

So here are my struggles:

1. First of all, my current laptop works fine, except for some frequent noise and overheating, but I would like to replace it, since I can't take its old graphic card and I just demand more power from it than I was before. I cannot play new games on it, which is a shame and the graphic card is also un-replaceable, so I am unable to upgrade it. However, like I said, I can wait for some times for the more advance technologies such as 3D to come out before replacing (In fact, does anyone know if the 3D technologies will be implemented as a standard for laptop this year? or would that happen some years later?) Anyway, it's always nice not having to wait for too long... ;) 

Just a quick note, I had never seen any 3D-related stuff, except for one time in Best Buy, testing out the 3DTV for 10 secs, which I find not really realistic =D Does it actually feel That realistic though? Also a side-question =P does 3D cause drowsiness?

2. I will be walking around in the campus 4 years from now (I think...) so mobility might become another factor that affects the final choice as well. Since Envy 14 features a smaller size and Envy 17, conversely, bigger size. My current laptop screen is 15.4" and I always wanted a bigger screen, but again bigger screen = less mobile.

3. I heard that ATI is releasing its 6000 series graphic card sometimes in the Q4 2011 and with all these 3D technologies coming out (Nintendo 3DS, 3DTV, etc.) Should I wait till Q4 2011 when the 6000 graphic cards come out? Do you think if it will be implemented by the next ATI graphic card series?

4. Windows 7 is the current big thing right now, I do am also very impressed by it, in case you don't know, I am a loyal Windows user ;)  but I am also looking forward to Windows 8, as said on Wikipedia, Microsoft plans to have Windows 8 support by July 2011, does that mean that the release date of Windows 8 is very close? Again should I wait for it?

5. Envy 17 only supports maximum of 8GB RAM and Envy 15 supports 16GB RAM, since my laptop only have 1GB RAM currently and lags quite frequently in games and multitasks, I cannot imagine the potential power with that much RAM, is there a significant difference between 8GB RAM and 16GB RAM when using your laptop? Also, how much would it that much RAM cost (if possible, in Canadian dollar)?

6. When I was testing out the Envy 15 at Best Buy, the sound volume was really low even when I max out the volume, which is quite a contrary to the dedicated Beats Audio. I heard that you were suppose to listen with your headphones in order for the quality and volume to be superb, is that true? It was also claimed by HP that Envy 17 will provide "outstanding audio performance through speakers, microphone, and headphone jacks." So problem fixed for the Envy 17? What about the Envy 14?

7. If I were to buy an Envy 14, would it be hard to see due to its small screen? From what I was told, laptop with around 13" screen usually have a hard time browsing web pages, having to scroll sideway all the time to see the whole web page, would that problem occur in the Envy 14?

8. Furthermore, unlike Envy 14 or its predecessor Envy 15, Envy 17 doesn't seem to have switchable graphics (I believe, from multiple sources) so would that drain the battery really quickly?

9. In final consideration, will the HP Envy series be updated in the future? As HP gives me a feeling that this Envy series is not going to last long, given its very luxury features and design, looks like those limited-collector editions that doesn't stay on the shelves for too long...

Should I really wait for the next "big thing" to come? Or just get it now? I personally, do want to get a new laptop as soon as possible (who doesn’t?) and I do like the Envy 17 a lot, but I cannot get out of these struggle with myself? Therefore, can anyone please help me out :( 

PLEASE FEEL FREE TO ADD ANY PERSONAL OPINIONS =]

P.S Does anybody know the release date of Envy 14 and Envy 17 for Canada?

Any help that you provided will be sincerely appreciated =]

More about : envy

May 24, 2010 12:46:34 AM

The envy series in general is very sleek and sexy, but unless you are going to game, there are better options out there. I know engadget and other sites have some reviews on the last gen envy's, so you can check those out.
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May 30, 2010 12:28:08 AM

Well you could always wait.... and wait... and wait.... and wait.... and wait.... until ATI releases their 123912958xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx series graphics card in Q4 2666
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Anonymous
a b α HP
June 1, 2010 9:57:41 AM

Envy 14 on the way (July). Kinda like a latest gen Macbook Pro 15'' for Win 7. Will replace the old Envy 13 and 15.

Much better, more balanced choice for a student imo. Go with i5 processor and a full 1080p Radiance screen as well instead of a i7 (i7 doesn't have switchable graphics so less batteries and runs hotter).
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Anonymous
a b α HP
June 1, 2010 10:13:27 AM

The big thing right now are the MacBook Pro i-series upgrades, Sony Vaio Z, and the new Envy 14. IMO, the benchmark designs for future laptops.

The envy 14 is actually 14.5'', so bigger than a 13.3''. Higher res, full HD should be no prob.

The core i5 Envys all have switchable graphics (ATI->switchable graphics, NVIDIA->Optimus). The current i7's "Clarksfield" do not, but the new "arrandale" ULV i7's will.

Q4 2011 is a long way away. And if ATI is gonna release its 6000 series in Q4 2011, you'll have to wait a few more months to see it trickling down to consumers. It's pointless waiting for new technology if current technology is adequate, and right now, the time is right.

Current tech is leaps and bound over the previous generation of laptops, thanks in great part to the trend-setting Macbook Pro and the new i-series mobile platform (slim design, scalable power, switchable graphics, long autonomy....).
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Best solution

Anonymous
a b α HP
June 1, 2010 11:00:21 AM

One think about the memory, 2 gigs is borderline, 4 Gigs is comfortable, 6 Gigs is plenty, 8 gigs is overkill, 12-16 gigs is just a waste of money on a laptop. Even in 4 years time, with Win 9 or whatever new OS, I doubt the comfortable memory requirement will exceed 8 gigs.

If you want a desktop replacement, doing all sorts of crazy things (play Crisis on ultra, encode 4 videos at the same time, make coffee), then the Envy line is probably short on the requirements.

If you want a windows laptop that can hold its own at pretty much everything, I doubt you'll find anything more capable. You have other choice, but they somewhat compromise on other parts of their design (either it is battery life, screen resolution, build quality, heat and noise management, ...).

The only quality choices I see are the Sony Vaio Z (very expensive), or the MBP (not so great with Win 7, and more expensive).

The cut-down versions are the Acer 3820TG (lower screen res, lower build quality), and the Asus UL line (less powerful graphics, lower scren res, lower build quality).
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Anonymous
a b α HP
August 3, 2010 8:15:44 PM

My question is whether to get the i5-520m or the i7-720. The i5 is faster in GHz, has better power management, and has lower thermal output...but the i7 has 4 cores. Is it worth going to the i7 if you don't have many multi-threaded applications? For most stuff, even games, it seems you will get better overall performance with a faster CPU - the i5 - and get the added benefit of longer battery life. Does this ring true? The cost difference on the Envy for the upgrade to i7 is minimal so I am open whatever is best all-around.
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August 14, 2010 12:21:25 AM

Best answer selected by reventon_703.
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