HP Pavilion dv5-1011ea 15.4in Blu-ray Notebook - HP Pavilion dv5-1011ea

Andy Vandervell

By Andy Vandervell



Our Score:


So far, then, the dv5 has racked up a fair amount of praise from us and rightly so: it's both attractive and feature laden and the price is reasonable too. Unfortunately, things are let down somewhat by the screen and we can't help but wonder if that fancy new glass panel is to blame.

In some respects it's pretty good. It handles quite challenging grey shades rather well, black levels are reasonable for an LCD display and there's nary a hint of backlight bleed, but the colour vibrancy, fidelity and overall brightness levels are distinctly lacklustre. This means photos and videos lack a little punch and in bright light reflections also become a problem, meaning you'll have to turn brightness up higher than normal to compensate - impacting on battery life as a result.

It's a shame also that HP hasn't taken a leaf out of Acer's book and added Dolby Home Theatre to the dv5. It adds a lot of value to a multimedia machine such as this, especially one with a Blu-ray drive - it helps enhance audio from the integrated speakers and does a particularly effective job when listening through headphones. That said the integrated speakers on the dv5, like previous HP laptops, are pretty good. Branded as Altec Lansing, though it's best not to read too much into that, they provide reasonable clarity and volume and are good enough for some casual music listening when nothing better is at hand.

As for performance the dv5-1011ea is very capable, without ever astounding. Its 2.0GHz processor isn't the fastest Intel currently offers, not by a long stretch, but its higher front side bus (new CPUs now reach 1,066MHz) means it easily outperforms older CPUs with the same clock speed, like the chip found in the Samsung R510, so unless your demands are particularly high, it'll do fine. You also have the added bonus of decent gaming performance, as we outlined earlier.

Battery life is reasonable verging on pretty good given the components, specifically the graphics card, used. In MobileMark 2007's Productivity suite the dv5 managed two hours and 50 minutes, extending to three hours in the lower intensity Reader test. Meanwhile, we were pleasantly surprised to discover it managed just over two hours in the DVD playback test at full screen brightness, so you could watch a short film or some TV episodes without plugging in and a little more if you turn down the brightness.


There's much to like about the HP Pavilion dv5-1011ea and it comes pretty close to being an ideal all-round multimedia machine. Indeed, the only thing that holds it back and precludes it from an award, is the slightly disappointing screen. This doesn't mean you should disregard it completely, its superb design, excellent feature set and reasonable price ensure that, but if you're interested then it's worth taking a look at one in the flesh before settling on it.


September 11, 2008, 2:31 pm

i would be interested to know how this laptop (and graphics card) will perform against devil may cry 4 - my new favourite game :D

i've used this before, and i thought the keyboard was horribly slippery and the touch pad offered a lot of resistance, making it a little tough to use. however the price is very tempting, when compared to the acer equivalent


September 11, 2008, 2:42 pm

I love you too x


September 11, 2008, 4:51 pm

I've checked out their website for the dv5-1000 line....all 1280x800

Are HP allergic to the idea of offering things like WXGA+ or higher resolutions with WLED backlit screens? I know it's just a personal thing but 1280 x 800 is just a lil bit too chunky on a 15.4" screen....

Andy Vandervell

September 11, 2008, 5:29 pm

I know what you mean, though unfortunately the mainstream argument against can easily surmised by anyone who has complained they can't read the text.

Mainly, though, it's a cost issue and if you're like HP and sell off-the-shelf then opting for something that adds a significant cost is tricky thing to do, especially if it prices them out of the market.

Moreover, I'd argue that though such things are undoubtedly desirable, they're not necessarily demanded for in large enough quantities to make it viable.

FYI, mind, we've got the Dell Studio 15 in at the moment and of course it does offer such options. It's on the continuing advantages it has.


September 11, 2008, 6:13 pm

The really frustrating bit is that unlike the US, we, in the UK, have no option to customise HP laptops. In the US you can customise the dv5t with WSXGA+.


September 12, 2008, 4:40 am

@Andy - re the Studio 15 - this has an option for a 1440 x 900 WLED screen, but the 'premium' XPS M1530 doesn't have this option - though it does in the US and has for some months. This has been on Dell's Ideastorm for some time, Dell won't comment on if/when it'll be an option - so it's bizarre that they're offering the option on the cheaper range laptop! The M1530 was looking like my number 1 choice till I found out the UK isn't being offered the better LED screen - call me picky, but if I got one, I'd always be looking at it and feeling short-changed!

You're right though - for "Joe Average" these sorts of things don't matter. But for tech-snobs and geeks - it's a big issue!

Glenn 1

October 5, 2008, 4:52 am

Andy, the official HP site says that the weight of the dv5-1011ea is 2.65kgs. Is that correct (as you mention that it is 2.95kgs)? The other thing is have HP discontinued this notebook already not even two months after its launch (Amazon, Play.com and dabs say that this is the case). That would be sad as it looks a great laptop...

Andy Vandervell

October 5, 2008, 2:29 pm

Are you sure? It's still on HP's website....http://h10010.www1.hp.com/wwpc/uk/en/...

As for the weigh, HP only quotes a "starting weight" that's without certain components. It is 2.95, I weighed it. :)


October 10, 2008, 2:50 am

just a point, do the laptop graphics use gddr2 or the faster gddr3 memory?

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