We've talked extensively about convertible laptops over the past few weeks. It really seems as though manufacturers are placing a firm bet on this segment and one of the companies that's betting the most on this market is HP with its X360 lineup. Today we're up and ready to do an in depth review of the HP ENVY 15-w110nr, one of the company's latest and most promising ventures into the convertible segment.
With a skylake generation Core i7 CPU, ample SSD storage and an astounding battery life, the HP ENVY 15-w110nr is set to take over the market and though it's not the cheapest model it's certainly one of the best in terms of the price/spec balance.
Pros: Core i7 (Skylake) CPU, 256GB SSD, 8GB of RAM, Full HD IPS touchscreen, up to 8 hours of battery life.
Cons: no dedicated graphics card.
HP ENVY 15-w110nr Review of a convertible on steroids
A breathtaking design where HP pulled out all the stops
The HP ENVY 15-w110nr is not intended to go unnoticed. This sleek laptop features a stellar design that marvels even the most skeptic of users. An aluminium design and a flip format that allows you to place this laptop in an array of different positions gives you tons of flexibility when it comes to using your laptop where and how you want to.
The display, as with any convertible, is a touchscreen. However, unlike most convertibles which thrive in the 11-13 inch form factor, this model goes all out to the rather unconventional 15 inch diagonal. Said screen comes within an IPS panel with a Full HD resolution (1920 by 1080) packing WLED-Backlit technology.
Add to that the fact that this is a relatively lightweight laptop with roughly 5 pounds under its belt and you're looking at an extremely portable device.
We should also mention that the keyboard at hand is backlit therefore typing away in the middle of the night without waking your significant other with the light won't be that much of an issue.
It's all about performance
While design and aesthetics are important, they're only relevant when the laptop is capable of delivering a solid performance and in the case of the HP ENVY 15-w110nr that's definitely a non-issue.
Packing an Skylake generation Intel Core i7-6500U dual core processor clocking in at 2.5GHz with a maximum speed of 3.1 GHz and 4MB of cache, this laptop is up and ready to perform even the most demanding of tasks. Wanna be a programmer? Bring it on! Wanna edit 4K video? We're waiting! Wanna launch a couple of virtual machines? We're ready!
More average tasks like browsing the web, chatting with friends and streaming movies will perform without any issues and overall it's hard to see anything this laptop wouldn't be able to do, well except for gaming but that's another point we'll cover in the next few paragraphs.
Obviously, a high end CPU would be worthless if the notebook came with a very limited RAM so HP made sure that that wasn't a problem by implementing an 8GB DDR3L SDRAM module right off the bat.
Personally I believe 8GB is the perfect amount of RAM since it delivers a seamless performance when multitasking with several apps at a time while also providing a future-proof guarantee that the laptop will be relevant for many years to come as software becomes more and more demanding.
What's that about not being able to play games?
Ah yes! It's "that time" in our review of the HP ENVY 15-w110nr where we say that this isn't a gaming laptop. This is mostly the case with most convertibles as they rarely come equipped with a dedicated graphics chip and HP's latest model is no exception.
Housing an Intel HD 520 integrated graphics chip, this laptop can do a fine job when it comes to streaming Full HD content and editing video but playing current AAA games at a decent frame rate is not really one of its virtues.
Sure, you can go ahead and play Overwatch, SIMS 4 and Fifa 15 at low settings just fine but when you get down to the more graphically demanding games this simply isn't an option.
How many hours can it last unplugged? What's the word on battery life?
While the graphic department might've scared a few people away, storage and battery life are definitely amongst this notebooks best features. Specifically we've got a 256GB SSD storage unit which delivers the best balance between storage capacity and storage velocity.
Obviously it's not as great as having a 1TB hard drive in terms of available space but when it comes down to performance you'd much rather have an SSD on board then a mechanical drive, believe me.
Battery life on the ENVY 15-w110nr is also pretty sweet, with a capacity that extends all the way to a maximum of 8 hours according to HP.
As you probably know by now, it's preferable to take these numbers with a grain of salt and expecting actual battery life to be a bit lower is typically the best strategy. That said, even if we went down to 6 hours and a half, things are still looking pretty good, especially when you consider all the high end hardware this battery is managing.
Finally, when it comes down to connectivity, you're pretty much covered with a couple of USB 3.1 ports, a standalone USB 2.0 port, HDMI output, ethernet port and an SD card reader. As expected, there's no DVD reader, a feature that's always absent within convertibles.
You've also got your standard super fast WiFi ac and Bluetooth support as well as an HD webcam and Bang&Olufsen audio for a good experience when watching movies or skyping with friends and family.
Final thoughts: Is it worth it?
To sum up our review of the HP ENVY 15-w110nr we're really loving this laptop, it's got everything one could possibly want sans the dedicated graphics card. However, unless you're a graphics designer or a hardcore gamer you'll hardly miss it.
With a high end Core i7 processor, enough RAM to carry out several tasks at a time and an astounding SSD storage that makes barely any compromises you're looking at one of the best convertibles in the market.
Reasonably priced when compared to the competition, we would firmly recommend this laptop for anyone looking to buy a powerhouse laptop that will be relevant and functional for years to come.