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HP DM1-3200SA Mini Review

Discussion in 'General Hardware' started by FreedomEclipse, Aug 19, 2011.

  1. FreedomEclipse

    FreedomEclipse ~Technological Technocrat~

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    Hi folks.

    Not many of you will know that I bought myself a new 'laptop' yesterday.
    I use the term 'laptop' very loosely as this laptop is only 11.6" and weighs in at about 1.6Kg which is roughly around the same weight as most netbooks give or take a few 100g's.

    Since the 3200SA and my old laptop were so similar in spec, i decided to do a mini review.
    So this is a 'old vs new' style review and also a small showcase of what AMD's E-350 APU is capable of compared to older tech...

    On with the review!

    Lets have a look at the outside of the DM1:

    Notice the nice little paterns on the top of lid, adds a nice touch to something that would otherwise be very bland.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    The bottom of the laptop is a very matt black affair with the HP logo and other warranty/copyright info at the bottom

    [​IMG]

    Unfortunately the lid and the bottom of the laptop loves finger prints, Its a total finger print magnet! I spent about 10mins buffing the top of the lip with a soft cloth and brasso gadget care before i took pictures

    Anyway, Moving on wards!

    Here we have the cardreader, headphones port, 2 USB 2.0's and a good old VGA to hook it up to any old monitors that might be available.

    [​IMG]

    On the other side we have a Kensington lock thing - which i have absent mindedly cut out of the picture when i took it, the vent, 2 lights for power on and HDD activity, HDMI and one more USB port

    [​IMG]

    so you can hook this little baby upto a HDtv and watch all your porn in super high quality!

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    The speakers are made by Altec Lansing. Now i have been testing these speakers by listening to music ranging from Trance/House/Techno and other genres like metal and light/heavy/alternative rock.

    I then followed it up by watching some Band Of Brothers, the Normandy Beach scene in Saving Private Ryan and the whole of The Expendables. followed by some random anime episodes in 1080p

    and i have to say, even though these speakers are better then the average netbooks and laptops. these speakers are nothing to shout home about. they are far from being 'tinny' but they lack bass and mids. but they do have a little more 'body' to the sound and the dolby 3d surround effects that emulate surround sound make the overall movie watching experience pretty pleasant. more then adequate for a long flight or train ride.


    The DM1 uses a 'chiclet' style of keyboard which most manufacturers have adopted from Apple. There are some users that loathe this style of keyboard then there are those that love it. I however havent used it enough to comment, but i quite like the solid clicky feedback when the keys are pressed.

    [​IMG]

    The mouse pad also supports Multi-Gesturing, but since i have never owned an iphone. i found this feature and the the pad itself somewhat rather confusing at first but im sure i will get used to it in time.

    ------------------------------------------------------


    The Specs:

    HP DM1-3200SA:

    AMD Athlon II Dual-Core E-350 1.6 GHz
    AMD HD6310 GPU
    8GB Geil DDR3 1333Mhz 2x4 (Stock is only 3Gb)
    320GB WD Scorpio Black 7200RPM
    11.6" @ 1366x768
    1.6Kg
    6-cell 10.8v 55w Lithium-ion battery*

    (*battery life is quoted to be around 9.3-9.5hrs by HP but most reviews of DM1's state that it only reached around 6-7hrs on a full charge. and this has been the average up time between charges even with some of the older models.)



    BenQ S73g* (*rawr imma dinosaur!)

    Intel Core Duo T2300 1.66Ghz
    ATi X1600MR
    2Gb 2x1 Corsair Value DDR2 667Mhz
    250Gb WD Scorpio Black 7200RPM
    14.1" @ 1280x800 WXVGA
    2.3Kg
    Battery???? (no idea)

    ----------------------------------------------------------

    The Laptops|Screens:

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Both laptops have their brightness turned right up. Notice how much more brighter and vibrant the DM1 is compared to my S73g?

    Watching videos on the DM1 was a real pleasure indeed. If only the sound had a little more punch it would have been a real bread winner.

    the HD6310GPU runs 1080p effortlessly. where as my dinosaur struggles to run it as AMD have long since dropped support for the X1600MR and there are no divers available for W7 and i am forced to use Mobility Modder to get drivers working. Unfortunately the problem with this is MM is bugged and it takes away hardware acceleration for videos so no DXVA - All hardware decoding/acceleration is handed off to the CPU which struggles with 1080p.


    ------------------------------------------

    Benchmarks:

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    We can see here that the HD6310 likes to game a little bit more then the outdated X1600MR

    Back in the day. I used to play games such as CoD1|UO, CoD2, TF2, CS:S, Guildwars & Oblivion at max setting if not on high settings on the X1600MR.

    I havent really tested the DM1 out fully yet when it comes to gaming. but it can do killing floor pretty well with high settings. There are videos on youtube where people are playing games like Crisis 1&2 and some L4D. but resolutions and settings have to be turned right down to make games playable.

    I have yet to experiment when it comes to gaming on the DM1 as i have owned it less then 24hrs. But i didnt get this laptop to treat it as a gaming machine. I will eventually try out more and more games and see how it runs.


    PCMark:

    I was going to install PCmark7 but decided it was too cruel to run it on something from the dark ages and ran with 05 instead.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    The E-350 will never be as Uber as the old T2300, but that being said...the T2300 cant do 7-8hrs hours of websurfin on 1 charge.

    -----------

    Conclusion:


    I was looking for something to replace the 2.3kg's of tankshell stopping laptop that was breaking my back during my regular commutes through london. 2.3Kg might not be super heavy, but coupled with other items like the charger and a few other bits a bobs in the backpack. this 2.3kg quickly becomes dead weight.

    I wasnt looking for a powerhouse of a machine, which my S73g certainly was back in 05 (it was top of the range back in hong kong when i bought it) and even though i have taken an overall 'downgrade' in system performance. I have to say that it was completely worth it.



    I know this review lacks a little stucture, but i was in a hurry to finish it off before dinner.

    I will most likely do a few gaming benches later on and update my post. but for the time being. this is how it is.
     
  2. BraveSoul

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    nice review, pretty pics :0), i see altec lancing speakers, my first speaker brand back in the day when they were awesome!!!! how does it sound?
     
    Crunching for Team TPU
  3. FreedomEclipse

    FreedomEclipse ~Technological Technocrat~

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    Above average unfortunately. they sound better then most standard laptops and netbooks out there, but overall its still lacking.

    Prior to this i was going to get a slightly cheaper Toshiba NB550D, that would of had a lot better sound then this, but the downside is it runs a C-50 APU.

    after experiencing the performance of a E-350 first hand. I have to honestly say that my heart sank a little as the CPU really holds back the GPU performance. but for something that can run L4D @ 1024x600 with everything set to low and Crisis 1&2 (as shown on youtube) is as good as its gonna get until the newer APU's get released.

    as for my personal thoughts.....

    I would have like better sound, but i am glad i didnt pick up a C-50 otherwise i would have been even more frustraited. then again i didnt get this for gaming.

    Looking forward to trying an mmo on it later
     
  4. Bo$$

    Bo$$ Lab Extraordinaire

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    I was thinking of getting one of these or an M11x for University...
    you might have swayed me away from this, the CPU bottleneck was a major concern for me.

    can you try out BC2 please? i cant find any multiplayer videos
     
  5. FreedomEclipse

    FreedomEclipse ~Technological Technocrat~

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    you shouldnt have any problem with the M11x

    It has an Nvidia GT335m with a SU7300

    since the E-350 is an APU it would be unfair to match them up and compare them head to head.

    However in light of that. this guy here seems to think its possible...

    [yt]wQx-Jz1HWjI[/yt]

    I'll give it a spin and see
     
  6. Fourstaff

    Fourstaff Moderator Staff Member

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    Newer M11x comes with Sandy Bridges :)
     
  7. FreedomEclipse

    FreedomEclipse ~Technological Technocrat~

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    then that would depend on the price that bo$$ is going to pay for that M11x

    Mind you this DM1 costs £319 without the 8Gb DDR3 upgrade
     
  8. Bo$$

    Bo$$ Lab Extraordinaire

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    yeah i saw that, but come on man, i am student! i cant afford that. i can probabily get an R1 somewhere for cheap but not an R3
    even the I3 makes it £800
     
  9. FreedomEclipse

    FreedomEclipse ~Technological Technocrat~

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    buy the cheapest model available, then hit ebay for second hand parts and do it up yourself for less then 70-80% of the cost
     
  10. Bo$$

    Bo$$ Lab Extraordinaire

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    parts are soldered onto the Mobo so that is out of the window, i already looked at that option... either wait for discount+ my £1k grant to come and nab the best one available
     
  11. FreedomEclipse

    FreedomEclipse ~Technological Technocrat~

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    so the processor is soldered into the mobo???
     
  12. Fourstaff

    Fourstaff Moderator Staff Member

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    You can always sell your ass :) <-- Freedom taught me this
     
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  13. Bo$$

    Bo$$ Lab Extraordinaire

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    interesting....:laugh:

    cpu+GPU are soldered
     
  14. FreedomEclipse

    FreedomEclipse ~Technological Technocrat~

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    ah thats bullshit. but i guess thats one way to save costs. or to stop people tinkering. it makes them look a little bad value as you cant swap it out for a new processor once youve had it for 3-4years,

    Im hoping that i can upgrade this E-350 with something newer when the fusion processors come out a few years down the line.

    I was gonna test BC2 on it. but i need to activate the game to be able to play it. so f**k it. no idea how many installs i got left.

    Ive tried TF2 with everything on low settings, and it struggles. I'll do a lot more tests tomorrow.
     
  15. FreedomEclipse

    FreedomEclipse ~Technological Technocrat~

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    I was thinking about testing Batman:AA but then i remembered i dont have an external optical drive

    I'll see if i can copy and paste the game over without need to install as i cant be arsed to set it up on a network and share my Dvd drive on my pc

    will see i can run the Metro2033 benchmark too lol. should be interesting
     
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  16. FreedomEclipse

    FreedomEclipse ~Technological Technocrat~

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    Metro2033 DX9 bench

    [​IMG]

    DX11 bench

    [​IMG]

    I suppose its playable. no eye candy obviously.
     
  17. Bo$$

    Bo$$ Lab Extraordinaire

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  18. FreedomEclipse

    FreedomEclipse ~Technological Technocrat~

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    but XP is no longer supported which makes finding drivers for new hardware a bitch
     

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