HP Elitebook 2730p Tablet PC Review

by tiffany boggs Reads (174,294)

The HP EliteBook 2730p is a nice Tablet PC. It has a solid chassis and a great design. I like the stainless steel look, it’s very sleek. The 2730p is the update to the 2710p and has most of the same features, but it has the upgraded 1.86GHz Core 2 Duo processor and upgraded hard drive options. Check out our full review to see how well the 2730p does against the competition.

HP EliteBook 2730p Tablet PC specs (as reviewed):

  • Intel Core 2 Duo 1.86GHz LV processor
  • 3GB RAM
  • 120GB, 5400rpm hard drive
  • Windows Vista Business OS
  • Intel Graphics Media Accelerator 4500MHD
  • 12.1″ Illumi-Lite, WXGA UWVA, anti-glare with Digitizer
  • 2 x USB 2.0
  • 1394a
  • Microphone in and headphone/line-out
  • RJ-11 and RJ-45
  • ExpressCard slot
  • SD card slot
  • Intel 802.11a/b/g/n  and Bluetooth
  • Battery: 6-cell
  • Weight: 3.7lbs
  • Dimensions: 11.24 x 8.35 x 1.11 in

Design and Build

Right off the bat you notice the sleek appearance of this 12.1″ tablet. I enjoyed taking it to my friend’s houses because they were impressed with the design. I also like that the 2730p has both the pointing stick and a touchpad. Options are always nice, especially if you are not a fan of the pointing stick. I would say this is a good update from the 2710p tablet.

HP 2730p in notebook mode with keyboard light on.

It weighs in around 3.7lbs, so it feels lightweight, but yet solid. It is easy to carry in tablet mode and fun to take notes with. I am a fan of the pen. It is durable and writes like a real pen. HP has made the 2730p into a nice business tablet. Some users may want more ports, but it has the average variety, I do wish there was more then two USB ports though. This preproduction review unit we have is top notch in terms of build quality. There were no signs of flex in the screen or hinge.

Display

The 2730p has a12.1″ Illumi-Lite, WXGA UWVA, anti-glare with digitizer display. The display is nice and clear. The colors are bold and vivid. The hinge is secure, so even in tablet mode the display is easy to read and locks into place. Taking notes was a breeze.

I didn’t notice any signs of color bleed and it looked great from all angles. The colors are crisp and the screen can get very bright. Even outside I had no problems viewing the screen because it doesn’t give off much of a glare.

Performance and Use

The 2730p is a peppy little tablet. I had no problems surfing the Web or doing my daily tasks like checking emails and writing documents. I didn’t notice it having a problem running multiple applications either. The review unit I have not only has a 1.86GHz Core 2 Duo processor, 120GB hard drive, but it has 3GB RAM and nice wireless connectivity options.

Comparison Results for PCMark05

PCMark05 measures the systems performance as a whole. The 2730p benchmarks are a good improvement from the 2710p.

Notebook PCMark05 Score
HP EliteBook 2730p (Intel Core 2 Duo 1.86GHz, GMA 4500MHD graphics) 3,489 PCMarks
Lenovo ThinkPad X200 (Intel Core 2 Duo 1.86GHz, GMA X4500 graphics) 4,318 PCMarks
Clevo TN121R (Intel Core 2 Duo 2.5GHz, GMA X3100 graphics) 4,697 PCMarks
Fujitsu LifeBook T5010 (Intel Core 2 Duo 2.26GHz, Mobile Intel 4500 MHD graphics) 4,864 PCMarks
HP tx2500 (AMD Turion X2 Ultra 2.4GHz, ATI HD 3200 graphics) 3, 873 PCMarks
HP tx2000 (AMD Turion 64 X2 2.3GHz, Nvidia Go 6150 graphics) 3,738 PCMarks
Asus R1E (Intel Core 2 Duo 2.4GHz, GMA 965 chipset) 4,679 PCMarks
Gateway C-140x (Intel Core 2 Duo 2GHz, ATI X2300 HD graphics) 4,342 PCMarks
HP Compaq 2710p (Intel Core 2 Duo ULV 1.2GHz, GMA X3100 graphics) 2,453 PCMarks
Lenovo ThinkPad X61 (Intel Core 2 Duo 1.6GHz, GMA X3100 graphics) 3,473 PCMarks
Fujitsu LifeBook T4220 (Intel Core 2 Duo 2.2GHz, GMA X3100 graphics) 4,171 PCMarks
HP tx1000 (AMD Turion X2 2.0GHz, Nvidia Go 6150) 3,052 PCMarks
Toshiba Tecra M6 (1.66GHz Intel T2300E, Intel GMA 950) 2,732 PCMarks

 

Comparison Results for 3Dmark05

3DMark05 tests the overall graphic capabilities of a notebook.

Notebook 3DMark 05 Results
HP EliteBook 2730p (1.86GHz Core 2 Duo, GMA 4500MHD graphics) 1,278 3DMarks
Lenovo ThinkPad X200 (1.86GHz Core 2 Duo, GMA X4500 graphics) 1,307 3DMarks
Fujitsu LifeBook T5010 (2.26GHz Core 2 Duo, Mobile Intel 4500 MHD graphics) 1,520 3DMarks
HP tx2500 (2.4GHz AMD Turion X2 Ultra, ATI HD 3200 graphics) 1,622 3DMarks
Asus R1E (2.4GHz Core 2 Duo, GMA 965 chipset) 923 3DMarks
Fujitsu LifeBook T2010 (1.2GHz ULV Core 2 Duo, GMA X3100 graphics) 566 3DMarks
Gateway C-140x (2GHz Core 2 Duo, ATI X2300 HD graphics) 1,956 3DMarks
HP Compaq 2710p (1.2GHz ULV Core 2 Duo, GMA X3100 graphics) 634 3DMarks
Lenovo ThinkPad X61 (1.6GHz Core 2 Duo, Intel GMA X3100 graphics) 812 3DMarks
Fujitsu LifeBook T4220 (2.2GHz Core 2 Duo, Intel GMA X3100 graphics) 925 3DMarks
Gateway E-155C (1.06GHz ULV Core 2 Duo, Intel GMA 950) 500 3DMarks
LG C1 (1.2GHz Intel Core Duo, Nvidia Go 7300) 1,392 3DMarks
Fujitsu LifeBook S2210 (1.6GHz AMD Turion 64 X2 TL-52, ATI x1150) 810 3DMarks

HDTune Results:

wPrime Results:

 

Vista Score:

Keyboard/Touchpad/Pen

The keyboard is solid and has no signs of flex. It can be hard to read if your outside because the keys are silver just like the rest of the keyboard and casing, so they blend in. A cool thing about the keyboard is the light that illuminates the keys, so typing at night is easier, perfect for plane trips. The keyboard design is very flat though, so there isn’t much response from the keys when typing.

The touchpad is nice and has double buttons. The touchpad is new to the 2730p because the 2710p only had the pointing stick. Well the 2730p has both options, which is nice for users because then they can choose. The touchpad seems a little slower then the pointing stick and the problem with the touchpad is that it gets in the way if you only want to use the nub, so you have to go in your settings and disable it, where is the disable button. It is a little on the small side as well, the design could have been different. I prefer the pointing stick on this model because it is more accurate and doesn’t make you feel cramped.

As I mentioned earlier the pen that comes with the 2730p is great. It has a durable solid feel and is comfortable to write with. The pen has an eraser too and when I was taking notes I almost forgot I was writing on a tablet. That’s a bonus. The 2730p has an accurate digitizer so writing on screen is easy, even my nephew liked playing with it and he is in grade school.

Ports

The 2730p has a good variety of ports, well average, but it is a simple business notebook. There is an optional dock, which I recommend if you plan to use this tablet in your office and not for mobile use. I would have liked another USB port though. I will say this and I know it is business focused, but it has no tablet features. No programmable buttons on screen or even a manual screen rotation button, which comes in handy, although the screen automatically changes when rotated.

Front of the 2730p

Left side of the 2730p

Right side of the 2730p

Back of the 2730p

Underneath the 2730p

Heat and Noise

I didn’t notice any problems with heat on the 2730p. It disperses the heat well when the fan is on and stays at a good temperature. It was never uncomfortable to hold or set on my lap.

The 2730p didn’t make much noise at all except for one thing I noticed, the CPU whines. Remember my unit is preproduction, so I am sure this isn’t a problem with regular HP models. It was annoying though and I have to mention that it caught my attention. There is no optical drive and the fan noise is minimal.

Wireless

The wireless signal strength is great on the 2730p so it is a good travel companion. It even has the extra flip-out antenna on top for added strength. I had no problems picking up a signal on the road, at my house, or in the office, thanks to the 802.11a/b/g/n connectivity. It has Bluetooth as well if you need that wireless mouse.

Speakers

The sound quality is decent. I wouldn’t jam out to my iTunes with it, but it is nice for drowning out noises with your headphones on. It has one speaker on the bottom of the tablet, so the sound can be muffled if the tablet is sitting on your desk. The 2730p isn’t supposed to be like the tx series tablets though, with the Altec Lansing speakers. It’s just your standard business tablet.

Conclusion

The 2730p is a nice update to the 2710p, processor and graphics wise. The touchpad is a nice addition to the pointing stick as well. I like having both, but the touchpad could be a little bigger. Taking notes was fun and easy, so was browsing the Internet. Although much of the ports and features are the same as the 2710p it is still a competitive tablet. It has even been compared to Lenovo’s X200. The 2730p is a business savvy tablet, great for on-the-go use. I would need the dock if I left it in my office, my opinion that is. The display is crisp and clear and the overall design is very sleek while being functional.

Pros

  • Clear, crisp display
  • Solid design
  • Nice pen, great for note-taking
  • Keyboard light

Cons

  • Needs bigger touchpad
  • No touchpad disable button
  • No tablet buttons

Pricing and Availability

For more information on the 2730p Tablet PC check out HP’s website for all the details.




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