Tuesday, October 20, 2009

HP Pavilion DV6t

HP is one of the top laptop makers out there and one of their latest models is the Pavilion dv6t, which has a modest price and comes with many media-geared features. Some of its highlights include a 16-inch widescreen display, a built-in numeric keypad, 320GB, and a fast 2.0-GHz Intel Core 2 Duo T6400 processor.

The laptop itself is mildly hefty and a little larger than most other similar laptops, but that's mostly due to the larger keyboard and body frame. In all, it weighs around 6 pounds, which isn't bad, especially if you want to carry it around in a bag or backpack (college students pay attention...). The exterior of the Pavilion dv6t is quite sleek and shiny with a glossy black finish with an HP imprint under the finish. The imprint you get will depend on the configuration of the model that you get, but they are all mostly stylish. One downside to the glossy exterior is the ability for fingerprints and smudges to show so easily, but HP includes a small cloth that wipes them away easily and cleanly.

On the inside, the dv6t features a beautiful 16-inch widescreen LCD display featuring HP's BrightView technology, which according to HP, makes it more vivid than a traditional LCD. The resolution of the screen is 1366 x 768, which is a little mediocre, but the image quality is stunning regardless. Colors are vivid and bright and text is very crisp and readable. One thing worth mentioning: Because of the glossy screen, it is prone to reflections very easily, from both fluorescent lighting and sunlight. The keyboard is perhaps a little cramped, but that's mostly due to the dedicated numeric keypad to the right of the keyboard. This a nice feature to have if you want it and it's rare to see on 16-inch notebooks.

In terms of connections and features, the Pavilion dv6t didn't leave out much. You get a 7200 RPM 320GB hard drive and an external eSATA port for adding an additional external hard drive for more storage space. There are also 4 USB 2.0 ports (2 on each side) and a HDMI port for connecting to a HDTV. Bluetooth 2.0, Wi-Fi (802.11a/b/g/n), and a 5-in-1 media card reader also come built in.

When it comes to performance, the dv6t doesn't leave you wishing too much more either. The Intel Core 2 Duo 2.0-GHz T6400 CPU is more than fast enough for general computing tasks and allows you to do video & photo editing and watch high-definitition video as well. The graphics card in the system is not enough for doing any intense 3D gaming, but HP does have a configuration for a more powerful ATi graphics card at a price of $300 to upgrade. When it comes to battery life, the dv6t does a pretty decent job at around 3 hours of rated battery life, with extended battery options available for purchase on This model comes with Microsoft Windows Vista Home Premium edition pre-installed.

Another thing we should mention is our recommendation to remove all of HP's included third-party applications and HP-branded utilities that come pre-installed with the system. Many of these programs are trial-versions or "cut-down" versions that do not provide all the features. These programs can slow down your system and take up a lot of hard drive space, so when you get your computer, go into the Programs and Features module of the control panel and uninstall anything you don't want, which will probably be a lot.

The HP Pavilion dv6t is a pretty good computer for the money and definitely worth looking at if you are in the market for a new laptop. College students in particular come to mind because of its multimedia features, general performance, and portability.

HP Pavilion DV7t Series

HP Pavilion dv6t Quad Edition series

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