Review Price free/subscription
Connectivity, however, can't be faulted. Starting on the back you'll find 3.5mm audio inputs and outputs, with an RF input for the TV Tuner and an S-Video output to accompany it. There are also separate audio connections, enabling you to connect side, rear, sub and front speakers directly to the notebook.
Then, on the left, there's a large assortment of connections with two USB ports, an Ethernet port, an expansion port for HP's own docking solutions, D-Sub, HDMI, e-SATA and a 4-pin FireWire port. Following this is a 5-in-1 memory card reader, which supports SD, MMC, Memory Stick/MS Pro and xD formats as well as a 54mm ExpressCard slot.
On the front there are further audio connections for easy access, with a Mic input, two headphone outputs and an IR receiver for the remote. Moving to right side, there are a further two USB ports with the rest of the space taken up by the HD DVD drive. For the security conscious there's also a lock slot, which is situated toward the back.
Looking at the pre-installed software, HP has struck a nice balance between adding value without turning the system into bloatware city. As standard you get Works 8.0, as well as all the usual bits and pieces you get with Windows Vista Home Premium, including Media Center.
For DVD authoring you get the Roxio Creator Suite and HP includes its own selection of programs, including the surprisingly decent QuickPlay software, which gives you quick access to various features such as HD DVD playback and even your favourite games. There's also a trial version of Norton Internet Security, though you could easily opt for any number of the free solutions out there such as AVG or Avast.