February 18, 2013
- Lightweight, attractive design
- Large, comfortable keyboard
- Speedy boot times
- Below average battery life
- Mediocre graphics performance
The HP Pavilion Sleekbook 15z-b000 is an AMD quad-core powered Windows 8 Ultrabook laptop that has a lightweight chassis and decent performance. It does have below average battery life and mediocre graphics performance, but for some users, the latter won't matter much.
The HP Sleekbook 15z-b000 measures a very portable 15.9 x 10.2 x 0.8-inches (wdh) and weighs about 4.5-pounds. For the size of the laptop, it's extremely portable and lightweight. To make it light, the chassis is made of plastic, but that doesn't mean its low on quality. The exterior is glossy and black which makes it look really sleek. The laptop also comes in two other colors: red and white.
The 15z Ultrabook has a 15.6-inch display with a resolution of 1366 x 768-pixels, which is on par with other similar Ultrabooks on the market today. The display did look less bright compared to others that we've seen. Viewing angles were very wide and color quality was very good. Some may be disappointed that the display is not touch-enabled.
We found the island-style keyboard to be fairly large in size, which is surprising because it also has a full number pad. The keys are flat and black and offer good feedback while typing. The touch pad is adequately sized although not as large as it could have been. It does have a nice tactile surface made of small, raised dots.
For ports, the HP Pavilion Sleekbook 15z offers two USB 3.0 ports, one USB 2.0 port, HDMI-out, Ethernet, a headphone jack and a 4-in-1 memory card reader. It was nice to see a full-sized HDMI port instead of a mini-HDMI, which eliminates the need for a dongle or special cable.
Our review unit had a configuration that consisted of an AMD Quad-Core A8-4555M (1.7GHz) CPU, 4GB of RAM, a 500GB 5400RPM hard drive and AMD HD 7500 graphics. While this AMD CPU isn't as powerful as an Intel Core i3 or i5, it still provides adequate performance for most potential buyers.
In a PCMark 7 benchmark, it earned a score of 1,465, which is about a 1,000 points lower than the Windows 8 Ultrabook category average. In our use, we didn't notice any slow downs while streaming HD video and doing some multitasking, so the benchmark doesn't much relate to real-world performance.
Boot times were quite speedy, however, at an average of 20 seconds. This is about 50% of the time it takes other similar Windows 8 Ultrabooks to start up.
The AMD HD 7500 graphics, while discrete, doesn't offer too much in terms of performance. It scored below average in graphics benchmarks and won't let you play any 3D games, even the lesser intense ones.
Battery life came in at only 4-hours, which is about 2-hours short of other similar Windows 8 Ultrabooks. This was rather perplexing as the CPU and graphics card are both low-voltage and more mobile-centered.
For more Windows 8 Ultrabook reviews, visit our Notebook & Ultrabook Reviews page.