First Impression: HP 2000-2c20NR

The HP 2000-2c20NR was purchased to replace my current HP Pavilion G62. The reason of why is the current PC was essentially going on its last days. It lost all of its feet, and lost one bumper for the monitor. The power button is temperamental, the SD card reader is not functioning, the F4 key is only on the keyboard due to a piece of scotch tape. The system will overheat, and the Shut Down has errors with it. On top of that, it has failed to even pass beyond the BIOS boot which is essential for any PC a few times. With this in mind, it is understandable of why I felt I should have got a new PC. For now, my G62 is still functional (considering), however it can not serve as a primary PC any longer. It will be demoted as a guest system, and hold my iTunes resources which I still use until I can find a competent replacement and move over to Android entirely (retiring the iPods).

The HP 2000 (the noted model) has an Intel Pentium Mobile CPU running at 2.4Ghz dual core. This is not the i3-i7 series CPUs. It has one 4GB SODIMM, and is upgradeable to two 8GB memory slots. It has a 720p resolution webcam, and integrated Intel series graphics. Drives include an SD card slot, a 500GB 5400RPM hard drive, and a DVD Writer. Ports include 1 VGA, 1 HDMI-out port (plugs into a TV or monitor), three USB2 ports, an RJ45-1GBPS and a VGA port (because we live in the 90s). It has Wifi-bgn support, but no Bluetooth. The screen size is 15.6” diagonal. There is also a speaker, and microphone jack, but there are integrated speakers, and mics.

The Good

Price was really good considering. I would have rather have something better, but this was not possible, and considering the problems of the G2x, I wasn’t comfortable with waiting. The system including a 7% state sales tax was $375. This was purchased from Office Depot which included free shipping.

The CPU is an Intel CPU. I had used four different CPUs in my time with using x86 based systems. I used the Alaris NX Series, Cytrix, AMD, and Intel. I had so much wanted to love AMD lines of CPUs, but always been disappointed with them when I compared them with Intel. To me, I consider the fact this is not running an AMD CPU as a good thing.

It is also an HP. While some people may not like HP, I have found them to be the best option when I dealt with other companies. Acer has been worthless junk. Dells will make you jump through hoops, and you can’t even be guaranteed the correct set of drivers from their web site. I had more than a few HP computers, and they had always been reliable in regards to my expectations.

One of the programs I have problems with on my old PC was Second Life. This new PC doesn’t handle Second Life perfectly, but it is not as hit hard with the new PC. The screen is also good, and the system as of yet has not got hot. 20 or 30 minutes on my G62 can get warm on the left side where the hard drive is sitting.

The Bad

Well, first is VGA. Seriously – are we still in the 90s? Most monitors using VGA will be CRT. And while there is an HDMI-out port, this meant that the VGA could have been replaced with another USB port, or maybe an eSATA port. VGA should have no place any computer made is the last 4 years including this HP PC.

Next is USB v2. This is a potential of 480MBPS, but with the standard for USB v3 at a potential of 5GBPS – this would have made a better option, and I am sure that the cost of USB 3 is not that much greater. Especially in notebooks where upgrades and adding ports are not possible, notebooks should use the latest approved standard.

There is no Bluetooth. Adding a Bluetooth module with most custom configurations within HP’s website is always about $10. I would have paid $10 more to get that Bluetooth module on off shelf model system. As with Wifi, Bluetooth should simply be standard.

It is also using the latest version of Windows. This would not normally be a bad thing, but Windows 8 is much more of a trouble (or nuisance) to deal with on systems without a touch enabled screen. I will try to deal with Windows 8, but I do find the tiled UI as a pain in the a**, and I am sure I am not a minority. Simply put, HP should have provided Windows 7 with all of their non-touch systems.

And while this was expected, HP (as with most companies) come with the usual suspects of S**tware. Sorry HP, but Norton is one of the biggest scams out there. Microsoft Security Essentials is free, and there are a number of other options. Why should I pay $40 or more for something that is in reality overly bloated to begin with. Just as a media player is 300MB (talking to you iTunes), Norton is a waste of space. At least iTunes offers smart playlists which only one other media player seems to do that from my knowledge.

Most of my problems with the computer seems to focus mostly on the Windows 8 Operating System. I have found myself wasting time navigating between the schizophrenic UI system that Windows 8 has.

The Ugly

Proprietary AC is in my opinion an environmentally unfriendly way of charging your PC. Desktops support a standard. And about a year ago, I read that with a little adjustment, a notebook PC can be charged with USB (up to 100 watts). The PC will have the Standard A connector (square plug), and then one would simply plug in the appropriate adapter. This would have meant that to replace the AC cable is simply a matter of buying a USB cable which are already being produced, and used.

Placement of everything is also a pet peeve. Ideally, I would like my ports on the left side, and the drives on the right side. This would make sense since most people are right handed and one would assume that drives are intended to get more use than ports. This would have been rather possible as well. However, everything is spread out over the right and left side of the system.

And I know, this is industry standard practice, but why must I spend $400 for a computer, and then spend another $30 for a thumb drive to create a restore set for my computer. HP probably can get 32GB thumb drives for $5, and they would do a lot for customer loyalty by providing your “restore thumb drive”. You can also quit wasting the hard drive space I paid for by not having my restore system on my physical hard drive which would do no good if the reason I have to do a system restore is because of a hard drive failure. Is this really too much to ask?

And is there a fire sale on the slowest SATA hard drives? OK, I am willing to accept no SSD on a $400 PC, but why should I also have to accept a 5400RPM hard drive. While this may sound fast to a layman, the standard is 7200RPM, and the higher quality is 10,000RPM. I would have been willing to accept a smaller hard drive at a faster speed as the speed of the drive is significant for booting and when the hard drive has to be really active.

Opinion

Would I have purchased this system normally? No. There is nothing wrong with it (with exception of my rant and expectations), but the PC is only nominally better than my current system when you compare simply by the numbers. The CPU is 200Mhz faster than my old one. I get 1GB more memory, and the hard drive is only 1 step higher. The OS is not as good in my opinion, and everything else is about the same. The $375 I paid for it is just buying insurance and time. I will have to increase my cost as I will need to pay for back up services, and I may have to pay for software to compensate for the flaws of Windows 8. On top of that, I will have interests since this PC was paid for with a Credit Card. The interests is 13.9%, but that means $1.16 per month for every $100.

Who is this PC for? It is a basic Productivity system. Don’t expect to do gaming, or high end video editing. The lack of integrated Bluetooth means that you would have to do extra steps if you want hands free calling, or voice recognition. For students, I would recommend primary school grades 5 or higher. I wouldn’t recommend this for adults or those going into higher education, instead push for a touch enabled device. It is good if you are on a very tight budget, but as presumed, you shouldn’t expect too much from this system.

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