Cracking Open: HP Envy 14 Spectre
March 8, 2012, 10:52am PST | Length: 00:03:47
The HP Envy 14 Spectre is an eye-catching ultrabook, and as our teardown shows, it's well-built, has solid hardware, and is easy to work on. But, it's also heavier and thicker than many other ultrabooks and more expensive. Bill Detwiler cracks open the Spectre and gives you a look inside.
For a detailed analysis of the teadown, check out my article and video, HP Spectre Teardown: Eye-catching, but overpriced ultrabook.
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Good Keyboard and High Quality Speakers
+ Keyboard & Touchpad Good to touch
+ Long battery life
+ High-quality speaker with ???beats-audio???
+ Good reflective display
- Only have 1 USB 2.0 Port
- Heavier weight than other ultrabook
You can see more detail at HP envy 14 specter reviews >> www.ultrabookprice.net
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>> Bill Detwiler: With not one but two gorilla glass panels, the HP Spectre is definitely one of the most stylish ultrabooks on the market but is this machine's beauty only skin deep? I'm Bill Detwiler, Head Technology Editor at TechRepublic and I'm going to crack open the HP NV14 Spectre.
>> Bill Detwiler: Unlike the MacBook AIR, there are no tamper resistant screws holding the Spectre's case together. I began cracking open the machine by removing the battery cover and then the battery. Next I disconnected a few internal cables, removed all the external case screws, including two hidden under the units rubber feet, and removed the near field communication module. I then popped the bottom half of the case loose from the top half and gently separated the two, disconnecting a handful of ribbon cables along the way. Next to come out was the SD card reader, the headphone jack, followed by the solid state drive and the hard drive and volume control circuit board. The touchpad was the last component I removed from the upper case. Now moving over to the Spectre's lower case, I first disconnected the lids display and antennae cables, then removed the hinge screws and the lid itself. I then removed the wireless card, cooling fans, motherboard and power port screws and the motherboard itself. Lastly I disconnected the ram, power port and removed the cooling assembly. With that our tear down was complete. So what did I learn about the Spectre from our tear down? Well first, the machine is well built and relatively easy to disassemble. And I like the fact that most parts can be replaced separately. The user accessible battery is also a nice touch as is the easy to reach SSD. Now our test unit came with a single 128 gig drive but HP appears to have put a spot right above it for a second SSD. Not only can you swap out the storage unit but unlike all the other ultrabooks I've cracked open, you can also upgrade the units ram as it's not soldered to the motherboard. On the downside, there's no way to get to the ram chip without removing the motherboard. Also the Spectre is a bit thicker and heavier than other ultrabooks. It's a full pound heavier than Apple's 13 inch MacBook Air and Acer's Aspire S3 and it's only slightly thinner than the MacBook Pro. Lastly, while HP touts the Spectre's outer gorilla glass panel as tough and scratch resistant, which it probably is, it still concerns me to have such a large piece of unprotected glass on my laptop. Now I haven't conducted any puncture or shatter tests on our machine. So my fears of opening my laptop bag and finding it full of broken glass may be completely unfounded. I sure hope so. glass breaking The Spectre is definitely an eye catching ultrabook and as our teardown shows, it's well built, has solid hardware and is easy to work on. But it's also on the pricier end of the ultrabook market. As of this taping, an entry level Spectre with a Core i5, CPU, 4 gigs of RAM and a 128 gig SSD, retails for $1399. Now upgrading to a Core i7 and a 256 gig SSD, raises the price to $1899. This is a full featured ultrabook with a full featured price. For TechRepublic, I'm Bill Detwiler and this has been a cracking open of the HP NV14 Spectre.