1. Bbeelzebub's Avatar
    So, I've decided to get a new laptop. I have a 10" HP 2 in 1 that I really like (for around the house browns and some email), so I think I'm going to stick with that form factor over a traditional laptop.

    I've pretty much narrowed it down to an HP Envy x360 15.6". 17" laptops are just a hassle to me. I've had several HP computers over the years and only one clunker among them. I unfortunately spent a ton of money on the awful DV9000 series back in the day. I am not a fan of Dell (they constantly break) or Acer and I'm completely suspicious of Lenovo. I've bought top of the line laptops in the past and because I'm not really a power user (I do my most intense stuff on my Mac), I've decided to go with a mid ranger and save some cash.

    I'm thinking of an HP Envy x360 and to save some cash, go with the AMD FX 9800p processor. They are on sale for 499 at a few retailers. I can get a 256gb M.2 to add to the included 1TB HDD for 80 bucks and a Bamboo Ink stylus for 50.

    The AMD processor seems to be better than last gen Intel i5s and 8th gen Intel i5s are starting at 150 bucks more and I'd still need to install an M.2 and purchase a stylus. Same if I went with a Ryzen cpu.

    Now, for what I'm spending... I see I could get a Lenovo Flex 5 in 14" that has the latest i5, has an SSD and comes with a stylus. I know Lenovo uses AES vs HP that uses MPP. The Lenovo build quality looks awful IMO. I will need to go see one in person, but from the looks, I prefer the HP.

    Would the HP setup be too dated? Is Lenovo a good brand despite the rumors of backdoors, the constant discovery of spyware, etc. that plague their reputation. Is the build quality of them worse than other brands? Thoughts?

    I don't game, It's mostly for entertainment purposes on the go. I'll occasionally run AutoCAD, Revit and Photoshop. For anything extensive, I'll be on my Mac.

    Thanks!
    02-20-2018 07:43 PM
  2. kaktus1389's Avatar
    Some people really like Lenovo and can recommend it and I was looking to buy a Lenovo 2-in-1 , but I changed my mind after I used a random Lenovo laptop at school. The Lenovo keyboard and trackpad on the laptop I used were just horrible. Truth be told those weren't the most expensive laptops money can buy, but for example, I got very iritated by the shape of the keys and travel distance, as well as by the positioning of the fn key as it was in the place where ctrl key is supposed to be. Now I would say that was a 2014-ish laptop so perhaps Lenovo makes better hardware these days, but I personally would rather go with HP or even Asus.

    I think that if you are looking for a midrange device and not to spend too much money, you're looking at the right laptop - it has USB-C so it's quite future proof (if we were looking at the same device) and it's going to be even better if you install SSD in it.

    By the way - what does Mac do better than a Windows laptop? Just curious as I am still unsure which laptop I'll buy when the time comes.
    ven07 likes this.
    02-21-2018 03:39 AM
  3. ven07's Avatar
    Just to jump in. I like the keyboard on the Mac. Trackpad works well and if you know the system well enough there are handy shortcuts built-in. I don't own a Mac, but I have used a classmates device a few times lol.

    Then again you can setup shortcuts on a windows laptop so it just comes down to preference.
    aximtreo and kaktus1389 like this.
    02-21-2018 06:07 AM
  4. Bbeelzebub's Avatar
    Thanks for the input!


    I may get the newer Ryzen model if the price drops or there is a better sale somewhere, but from what I understand that comes with a decrease in battery life. Something I learned by reading the service manual, the latest i5s from HP in the series only have one upgradable memory slot. They automatically put a 4GB module on board in one of the slots that can't be removed, whether you get an 8gb or 12gb configuration. The only way around it is ordering a 16gb configuration. LAME. I'd rather add my own ram.

    This has made the decision to go with AMD much easier.

    As for Macs, IMO, it's not so much that they do things "better". There are just less headaches. The computer doesn't fill up with so much clutter. There is limited supported hardware, but at least you know the hardware will work (no funky windows update forcing things on you that could break, etc.). The build quality is superb and again, could be my preference, but the Apple software (like photos, pages, messages, FaceTime, etc... work without hassle and you don't have to pay for them.). I'm 4.5 years in on this iMac. I bought it with all the upgrades and maxed out the configuration. I haven't had a single issue. With my last Dell (an XPS model), I had the power supply replaced twice and the Mobo once by this time. With each subsequent Windows release, I'd have more unsupported hardware because manufacturers dropped support. I had purchased another Dell XPS before I bought this Mac and the graphics card already had issues less than a month after. I returned it and kept looking. HP didn't offer anything remotely similar in the higher end desktop range, so I decided to give Mac another try. In the end, they both do the same things... Windows can do even more really, but sometimes simplicity means peace of mind.
    kaktus1389 and ven07 like this.
    02-21-2018 03:32 PM
  5. DOGC_Kyle's Avatar
    You checked the exact model (something like 15-xxxx, or alternatively the product number, drop either number into HP.com search) of the Envy you're looking at? There are multiple models... so be sure you looked at the right service manual. They're fairly similar for most part, but there may be differences if you're looking to upgrade individual parts.

    SSDs are always standard sizes and connectors, and on all but extreme low-end (education/Stream) they are replaceable.
    Memory varies - everything used to have replaceable memory (even tablets) but over the past few years they've been soldering more. Removes the need for the big connector - but it means the whole board and memory is one permanent piece. Definitely check if there are specific step-by-step instructions with pictures for replacing the memory on the service manual - that will give you the true answer. The spec list on top will usually not have full details on whether it is or isn't replaceable.

    If you're not sure, or just have any other questions let me know - I should be able to answer most of the HP-specific questions.


    Consumer PCs (Envy and Pavilion) used to use Alps pens IIRC, but recently (2016 or 2017) they switched to MPP. So depending on how old it is, it might not be MPP - something to keep in mind if you're buying the pen separate.

    Commercial PCs (Elite/Pro/Z) use Wacom active pens.
    ven07 likes this.
    02-21-2018 08:51 PM
  6. Bbeelzebub's Avatar
    Thanks for the info! Yes, I've read the service / maintenance models for both x360s that I'm considering, that is how I discovered which ones had boards with on board memory. The service manual for the Best Buy model and the service manual for the one on sale at HP are the same. Same parts listed are replacements, etc. Only difference is FX 9800p vs Ryzen 5 2500u.

    I don't want to buy the Ryzen model from HP because it was on sale for 100 bucks cheaper right after it came out and now that I know that, it doesn't seem like a bargain. I'm basically buying all this with free money that I got for participating in a market research study and am determined not to put anything in from my bank account. Otherwise I'd just customize an 8th gen i7 and max it all out... Only to regret it six months from now when I see the computer sitting not doing much. LOL :p
    ven07 likes this.
    02-22-2018 02:35 PM
  7. Bbeelzebub's Avatar
    After considerable thought and lots of research... I ended up deciding to cough up some extra money and get the Spectre X360 or the Yoga 720. However, upon my research, I find that the Yoga has a ton of issues on 4k models so I think I'm going with the Spectre x360. It's absolutely gorgeous in person. The latest models check all the right boxes and although it's over twice what I had planned on spending, I think I'll ultimately be happier with it! Thanks!
    03-11-2018 09:00 PM
  8. fiveaces01's Avatar
    Try Dell 17" 7000 series. I got mine with the Intel eighth generation, I 7 processor. 128 g of SSD and a terabyte of HDD. It has lightning fast facial recognition a gorgeous display and a very quick processor.
    03-12-2018 10:29 AM
  9. Bbeelzebub's Avatar
    I've had awful luck with Dell in the past. (Albeit with desktops). I tend to have much better luck with HP. Every HP I've had (save for one) has lasted ten years without anything breaking.

    I have been looking at the Dell 15" 7000 series though. I would jump on a 17" if the monitor supported pen stylus. I've heard they do, but they aren't marketed that way, and I've heard they do not. I went into Best Buy and was comparing the HP and Lenovos and happened to see a gorgeous Dell. It really looked (dare I say it) better than the HP Spectres and Envys.

    This is the Dell Model that may have be reconsidering the Spectre x360. The Dell reps weren't that helpful and I'm not sure if I believe anything they tell me.

    1- They told me that I could install an M.2 NVMe without having to do anything special other than open and stick it in. (I read that Dell does not do like HP and make it easy to add things in after purchase)

    2- They couldn't tell me if it supports Waecom AES or MPP. Um.... That is kind of a big deal.
    03-12-2018 05:03 PM

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