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HP 15-EF0023DX Review

Cheap for a reason.

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Review

It’s power packed with 256GB NVMe SSD, Ryzen 3500U, 12GB of RAM – and all that is ruined by cheap quality, a poor quality screen, and barebones features.

HP’s quality control and serviceability are atrocious. We see them more than any other brand for quirky problems. This one is commissioned by HP, but is designed and built by another company and rebranded HP. Their bad track record for bad customer service isn’t helping matters despite possible serviceability. The fit and finish on this laptop is very plastic-y and a bit cheap feeling. ASUS and ACER are making their entry eco notebook much more premium feeling.

Not that it’s a deal breaker for most, but there is no back light on the keyboard for this model either.

Testing Configuration

  • Ryzen 5 3500U

  • 12GB RAM

  • 256GB NVME SSD

  • 15.6″ HD Touch Display (720p)

  • Wireless 802.11AC | Bluetooth 4.1

Speed & Power

The machine is fast. Boot times are quick, and general operation and productivity tasks suffer from little lag. The 3500U is a fine processor and the solid state drive creates a nimble unit. It will do fine for light video, audio editing. Photoshop RAWs if you get a better screen and external storage to put them on.

RAM & Storage

12GB of RAM is a lot, too much for most people. HP decided it was better to pop in an arbitrary amount of RAM in hopes to lure customers rather than putting that money towards a FHD screen which would have been more practical for the people buying this kind of notebook.

Reliability & Quality

Not great. Can’t comment on reliability as it’s a newer model we’re selling, but the fit and finish of the computer feels a bit cheap and low end. It doesn’t feel like it could take a beating. The concern is that it won’t hold up, and if they took shortcuts on the outside, did they take shortcuts on the inside?

Also, the keyboard is unpleasant to type on. It feels cheap and offers a poor typing experience. Another glaring lack of attention to quality.

Features & Battery

This machine comes in Windows S mode. Now, it’s a free upgrade to normal Windows 10, but HP was being cheap and cutting corners here by supplying Windows 10. Easy enough to remove, but a sign of HP subsidizing costs. Built in is a webcam and dual microphones, wireless AC, and Bluetooth 4.1 (another corner cut, they should have used Bluetooth 5). The display is a 15.6″ standard high definition touch screen so it has inexcusable resolution for 2020. The glossy screen renders colors to pop but at the sacrifice of a screen that doesn’t get bright enough and suffers from horrific glare. It’s also missing is a fingerprint scanner or Windows Hello compatible camera. Battery life is standard at around 8 hours of practical use.

Input / Output

  • 1 x COMBO audio jack

  • 2 x Type-A USB 3.0 (USB 3.1 Gen 1)

  • 1 x Type-C USB 3.0 (USB 3.1 Gen 1)

  • 1 x HDMI

  • 1 x Camera Card Port

Who’s it for

  • Small Businesses

  • Non-Profits

  • No one

Who’s it not for

  • Heavy Gamers

  • Heavy Video Editors

  • Power RAW Photo Editors

Summary

This laptop is a poor offering from HP; they knew that hence the lack of a name. It offers solid specs on paper and for a good price but when you see all the corners they cut, you’ll realize after using it for a few days that there are many better options available on the market. This machine is too expensive for people on a budget, not powerful enough for power users, and not equipped well enough for those looking for good features. It doesn’t appeal to anyone.

Rating
2/5