An HP dv2 Arrives: Or Are There Four of Them in Here?


hp-dv2-packageJust a little mid-day funny here. As I alluded to in the CPU shootout earlier today, an HP (s HP) dv2 is set to arrive here today. It actually arrived while I was on the road and Barb told me that she brought it upstairs to the home office. Lo and behold, this is what I saw when I walked into my office. Note: I put the MSI Wind netbook on top of the package for a size comparison. I only asked for one review unit, not four! ;)

Although the bigger-than-a-netbook dv2 is an HP device, AMD (s AMD) actually sent me this on loan. The idea is to take a look at their AMD Neo platform up close and personal. I will say that I was very impressed when I got some dv2 play-time at CES, but you do have to keep things in perspective here. The dv2 might be smallish like a netbook, but it retains a notebook-like starting price of $749 and I don’t expect to see much more than three-hours of battery life. On the flipside, the dv2 I saw in January can run rings around today’s traditional netbooks when it comes to the graphics department. Gaming or 1080p video should be no problem for this device.

As we say: different strokes for different folks, so I’ll be looking at the dv2 in depth and trying to shed light on who it’s for and what it can do better (or worse) than similar solutions out there. My initial gut expectation is that this device is more comparable to a reasonably powered ultra-portable notebook than a true netbook. Time will tell as we give it a thorough review. Now where did I put that utility knife so I can open this ginormous box up?



Did you get the device with the dedicated HD 3410 or one with just xpress 1250? I’d really like to know if 1250 is enough to run HD video and do you get better battery-life with it. And if you have HD 3410 can you turn the dedicated card of and run the computer with IGP for better battery-life? Or does that HD 3410 even have 1250 chipset in it?


The specs on the dv2 is very good. You can hook it up to your 50″ Plasma and watch HD video, and maybe a game or two. By the way I think AMD wanted to make sure the box didn’t get lost. ;)


“Gaming or 1080p video should be no problem for this device.”

Sorry Kevin but I have to challenge you on this one.

1080p playback is of no use on a display that can only do 1280×800. Even if the CPU or GPU can muster the decoding power, you’ll never get the quality and the image will just be down-scaled to fit the screen. True – it’s got HDMI for output to a 1080p display, but without a BD drive what 1080p content are you going to watch on the big screen?

As for gaming, you might want to run 3DMark06 and look at the (laughable) score that gives. Basic dedicated cards like the nVidia G105M top out at 2200. Will you be playing today’s games or are you considering a unit that can also play games coming six months from now? DX 11 is just around the corner, yet I have seen current DX 10 cards crumble under the best DX 9 titles that were already out two years ago.

If it’s true 1080p you want in a notebook, I would only recommend the HP HDX16 with the 1920 display and BD drive. At least that unit will give you 2.1 speakers to better enjoy the HD content and a 12-cell battery for extra juice.

But if your craving involves real gaming (and I don’t mean Windows Minesweeper), get a proper gaming notebook. You can find plenty of info at my blog, I’ve looked at many alternatives, and there’s a slew of new hardware coming in the next few weeks.

Kevin C. Tofel

Fair points. :) Since this is an ultra-portable device that starts at $749, I’m not really thinking of it as compared to a “real gaming” notebook. For a 12-inch device, I’m impressed that it can handle 1080p Blu-Ray content via HDMI out; I saw that demo at CES. I also have a 24-inch 1920x1080p external that I use daily, so I’ll be connecting it to that. I’m not suggesting that folks looking for a heavy-duty gaming device rush out and buy this: I’m simply pointing out that it’s fairly capable in the graphics area.


Kevin, you MUST do an unboxing for us! I along with a lot of other people want to know why the hell AMD packed that small laptop in a box that HUGE.



I thought being the “green” guy you are you’d be aware of this. It’s part of HP’s latest green marketing campaign, buy a laptop get a free desk made from recycled packing material. ;-)

Kevin C. Tofel

I’m all for the “green” stuff, but I have to give them an out on this one. The review device came from AMD, not HP, so a consumer bought dv2 wouldn’t come in a box this big. At least I HOPE not! :)



Maybe they included some extended range batteries, like a 21 cell honking battery (with padded carrying straps) that can increase this graphics beast to a respectable 4 hour range. I wonder what the Crysis framerate is on this bad boy ?

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