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Hands on: HP Envy 16-inch Review

First Impressions

The HP Envy 16 takes over from the Envy 15. Updated to include the latest 12th-Gen Intel Core processor, with configurations options up to an Nvidia GeForce RTX 3060 laptop GPU, this laptop should deliver smooth and speedy performance.

Key Features

  • Uses Windows 11Runs on Windows 11 Home or Windows 11 Pro
  • Powerful processorUp to a 12th-Gen Intel Core i9-12900H processor
  • Three different GPU choicesCan use Nvidia GeForce RTX 3060, Intel Arc A370M Graphics or Intel Iris Xe Graphics

Introduction

The HP Envy 16-inch laptop has been designed for on-the-go productivity. Kitted out with a powerful processor and GPU, this laptop should be able to handle intense tasks such as 3D rendering and 4K video editing with ease.

I had the opportunity to briefly trial the device ahead of its full release at a press event to gauge its chances of taking on the MacBook Pro 16-inch, which is currently our recommended laptop for creative tasks.

It’s important to note that this article is only a hands-on, so I’ll only be covering the design and specs of the machine, not performance or battery life. We’ll do a deeper dive into its performance when we get the final model in for a full review.

Pricing and Release Date

The HP Envy 16-inch has a starting price of $1399.99 and is expected to be available for purchase in May. We’ll update this article once UK and European pricing, as well as a more specific release date, is confirmed.

Design and Screen

  • 16-inch display
  • 88.7% screen-to-body ratio
  • Sleek and simple design
  • Comes in Natural Silver

The HP Envy 16-inch looks very similar to the HP Envy 17-inch, just a tad smaller. It comes in one colour, Natural Silver, and it has a sleek and simple design that’s appealing. I’d have welcomed more choice when it comes to colour options, like the Acer Spin 5, but the 88.7% screen-to-body ratio and streamlined design give it a professional quality, if not a slightly plain look.

I didn’t do much typing on the Envy 16, but from my short time with it, the keyboard here felt sturdy and durable. However, the laptop is quite weighty at 2.3kg, which may make it a tad too heavy to use as a portable device. This will be slightly disappointing news for anyone who is currently hybrid working.

The HP Envy 16 laptop at a press event
Image Credit (Trusted Reviews)

There are three variants of display on offer, although all are 16 inches in size. There’s a 3840 x 2400 resolution OLED option , or two WQXGA models that come with a resolution of 2560 x 1600. Unlike the OLED model, the latter two come with a refresh rate of 120Hz, but all three options cap out at 400 nits of brightness and deliver 100% coverage of the sRGB gamut, according to HP. I didn’t have a colorimeter at the event to confirm these quotes, but will be able to do so in our full review. Nevertheless, the screen looked bright and crisp, and I welcomed its generous proportions, since it was easy to read multiple tabs at once.

The Envy 16 presents a good selection of ports, including two Thunderbolt 4 USB-C, DisplayPort 1.4, two SuperSpeed USB Type-A, HDMI 2.1, an SD card reader and a 3.5mm audio jack. This makes this laptop an ideal choice for anyone who frequently needs to transfer lots of data; in particular, I appreciated the inclusion of Thunderbolt 4, since it’s invaluable for creatives who need to shift a lot of video content. Thunderbolt is a USB standard that facilitates faster data transfer speeds with devices such as external SSDs.

The port selection on the HP Envy 16

Performance

  • 12th-Gen Intel Core processor
  • Nvidia GeForce or Intel GPU
  • 32/16GB RAM
  • Up to 2TB storage

As mentioned, I wasn’t able to test the HP Envy 16-inch to full capacity, so I’ll only be going through the specs on offer as opposed to the performance. There are three flavours of CPU:

  • 12th Generation Intel Core i9-12900H
  • 12th Generation Intel Core i7-12700H
  • 12th Generation Intel Core i5-12500H

You also get a choice of an Nvidia GeForce RTX 3060 laptop GPU, Intel Arc A370M graphics or Intel Iris Xe graphics, with the former being the most powerful. Depending on the combination of internals, the Envy 16 could prove very powerful, indeed, with the 12th-Gen processor capable of delivering smooth performance and speedy load-up times. Opting for the Nvidia GPU should also allow users to engage in more intensive graphics work, such as Adobe Photoshop or video editing.

The HP Envy 16-inch laptop

This laptop is also capable of going up to 2TB of storage, with an M.2 SSD expansion capability on a single SSD. You have a choice of either 32GB or 16GB of RAM, which should be more than enough for productivity workers and even creatives.

In terms of battery, HP states that that Envy 16 can reach 50% charge in 30 minutes thanks to support for fast charge, with a battery life of up to 9hrs 45mins during regular mixed use. It comes packing an 83Wh battery and either a 150W or 200W smart AC power adapter. I didn’t get a chance to run any battery tests during my preview; but, if accurate, these figures are impressive for a device with such specs.

First Impressions

I didn’t get to spend much time with the HP Envy 16-inch, but I liked what I saw. The large screen made it easy to fit multiple tabs on the screen – ideal for productivity – and the screen itself appeared bright and vibrant, which would be great for watching media.

The large size and weight may discourage people from using this device as a hybrid working laptop, although I’d recommend that anyone who needs a powerful device for content creation or productivity consider the HP Envy 16-inch.

HP Envy 16-inch specs

You can see a break down of the HP Envy 16-inch’s specs and how they compare to its larger sibling in the table below.

CPU
Manufacturer
Screen Size
Storage Capacity
Front Camera
Battery Hours
Size (Dimensions)
Weight
Operating System
Release Date
Resolution
HDR
Ports
GPU
RAM
Colours
Display Technology
Screen Technology
Touch Screen
Convertible?
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A 'hands on review' is our first impression of a product only - it is not a full test and verdict. Our writer must have spent some time with the product to describe an early sense of what it's like to use. We call these 'hands on reviews' to make them visible in search. However these are always unscored and don't give recommendations. Read more about our reviews policy.

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