When it comes to laptops, HP is a household name. HP is the world’s largest PC seller, accounting for 1 in 5 computers sold. But when it comes to choosing, this can be a somewhat dicey, especially with so many models in the market. The company offers a dizzying array of notebook choices for every budget and use case, from sub-N70,000 Chromebooks to high-end workstations and mobile gaming rigs. But you don’t just want to go into the market to pick any available HP laptop, you want to go well-informed! How then do you know the one that is best for you as a business person, student, heavy gamer, IT specialist or just an everyday user? Let’s dive in.
Do you want a value-driven Pavilion, a stylish and high-performing Spectre, or a super-thin Envy? If you’re buying for a business, do you know the difference between an EliteBook and a ProBook? Below, we explore each HP sub-brand to help you decide.
Spectre: High-end consumer laptops
This are HP’s most premium laptops. They are are usually expensive, but lightweight. They have gorgeous designs and include beautiful displays. If you can afford the premium, these are the top-of-the-line HP notebooks for consumers or business users who don’t need IT management features such as vPro. Some Spectres even have the optional Sure View privacy screen, which limits viewing angles to prevent the person next to you on the plane from seeing your work.
- CNC aluminum chassis in silver or ash color
- High-end processors (ex: Kaby Lake G)
- Exclusively SSDs
- Optional 4K displays, Sure View privacy screens
- Thunderbolt 3 ports
Top Spectre Picks
- Spectre x360 (13-inch): A stylish, thoughtful design, excellent component options and looooooong battery life all make the HP Spectre x360 13 one of the best premium two-in-one ultra-portables around. This gorgeous 2-in-1 has an ultrathin design, a snappy keyboard and long battery life. (Buy now here or here)
- Spectre 13: If you don’t need a 2-in-1 but you do want a powerful, stylish system, the Spectre 13 is built for you. If you can work with USB-C ports and a non-touch display, the HP Spectre offers a great design and excellent performance in the world’s thinnest full- -power laptop body. But beware its short battery life. The Envy 13 offers much longer endurance and a fantastic keyboard. (Buy Now)
- Spectre x360 (15-inch): If you need both style and size, this convertible has a 15-inch touch screen, so you can take advantage of the tablet mode in Windows 10. (Buy Now)
Envy: Stylish, powerful but less expensive than Spectre
HP’s Envy notebooks are thin, beautifully designed machines, which feature all-metal chassis and high-end components such as SSDs, high-res screens and discrete graphics. Envys are a little less expensive than Spectres and sometimes offer better value. However, you may see lower-end components such as mechanical hard drives on some models. The metal is usually stamped aluminum rather than the more-premium precision-milled metal on the Spectre line.
- Metal chassis
- Optional IR camera
- Latest-Gen CPUs
- USB Type-C ports
- Hard drive or SSD
Top Envy Picks
- Envy 13t: One of the best values in tech, the Envy 13t has a wide array of ports, a fantastic keyboard and a long battery life. It starts at under N300,000 and is the best choice for students or anyone who wants a premium clamshell laptop. (Buy Now or check it out here)
- HP Envy x360 15t: This 2-in-1 starts at under N300,000, which makes it a much more affordable option than the Spectre x360 (15-inch). It’s also one of the few laptops that’s available with AMD’s Ryzen mobile processor. However, this laptop is heavier than the Spectre and has shorter battery life. (Buy Now)
Pavilion: Mainstream consumer
HP’s Pavilion line includes a wide variety of laptops at mainstream prices. You may find Pavilions with metal chassis, but plastic is also common. Some of the laptops also come in bright colours.
You can find low-cost laptops such as the Pavilion x360 (11-inch) for less than N150,000 or more-powerful systems such as the Pavilion Power for over N300,000. If you can’t spend more than N350,000, consider a Pavilion.
- Hard drive or SSD
- Optional IR cameras
- Optional discrete graphics
Top Pavilion Picks
- HP Pavilion x360 (11-inch): This compact 2-in-1 starts at under N150,000 and provides pen support, but it also has short battery life and a low-res display. (Buy Now)
- HP Pavilion Power 15t: Designed for budget gamers, the Power 15t features discrete Nvidia GTX 1050 graphics, a 45-watt Intel H-Series CPU and your choice of full-HD or 4K display. (Buy Now)
Chromebooks: For kids, Chrome fans
While HP doesn’t make as many Chromebook as Asus or Acer does, the company has healthy line of laptops powered by Google’s browser-centric operating system.
Top Chromebooks Picks
- HP Chromebook 11: This 11-inch laptop starts at $179 and provides 4GB of RAM and 16GB of storage. (Chromebooks are not so popular in Nigeria. See Naijatech Guide)
- HP Chromebook x360: This 11-inch convertible typically goes sells for around N110,000 and features a Celeron CPU, 4GB of RAM and 16GB of storage.
- HP Chromebook 14 G4: This 14-inch Chromebook has an optional 1080p display.
Stream: Secondary computers
If you prefer Windows to Chrome OS and you’re looking for an inexpensive secondary computer or a first laptop for kids, HP’s Stream line is for you. These sub-N90,000 PCs come in vibrant colours, such as purple and blue, and feature Celeron CPUs with flash storage.
Top Streams Picks
- HP Stream 11: This N60,000, 11-inch laptop weighs just 1.13kg and features a Celeron CPU, 32GB of storage and 4GB of RAM. (Buy Now)
- HP Stream 14: The larger Stream has a 14-inch, 1366 x 768 screen but the same specs as its little brother, and it goes for as little as N65,000. (Buy Now)
Omen: For gamers
If you’re a serious PC gamer, HP’s Omen line is made for you. These laptops have attractive, carbon-fiber lids that include the old Voodoo logo (HP acquired Voodoo about 10 years ago), along with high-end graphics cards and CPUs.
Top Omens Picks
- HP Omen 17: This 17-inch beast is available with up to a GTX 1070 graphics card and a Core i7 H-Series CPU. It offers an attractive design, a vivid screen and plenty of performance. (Buy Now)
- HP Omen 15: The smaller Omen has a bright display, great audio and the same attractive design as its larger counterpart. It starts at under N500,000 and comes with up to an Nvidia GTX 1060 Max-Q GPU. (Buy Now)
HP Laptops (No Name): Budget consumers
The least expensive HP laptops lack an official sub-brand, like “Pavilion” or “Envy.” They are simply named HP + model number. These lower-cost systems come in a wide array of colors and sizes.
HP laptops start with low-end, Pentium and Celeron CPUs, but you can also find models with Intel 8th Gen Core processors inside. You can also get these HP laptops with optical drives, a feature you won’t find on the higher-end models.
- Many colors and materials
- Start at Celeron, but go up to Intel Core i5 / i7
- Hard drives and SSDs
Top HP laptops Picks
- HP 15-BS015DX: This 15-inch laptop costs around N190,000 or less and offers a Core i5 CPU, 8GB of RAM and a 1TB hard drive. It has a low-res, 1366 x 768 display, but it is a touch-screen laptop. (Not available in Nigeria)
- HP 15-BW011DX: One of the cheapest 15-inch laptops you can buy, this model sells for around N120,000. It has an AMD A6 CPU, a 500GB hard drive and 4GB of RAM.
EliteBook: Built for big business, top of the line
HP’s EliteBook line is designed for large businesses, offering a mix of security and durability. These laptops pack biometric login options and built-in security software, such as self-healing BIOSes and durable chassis that meet MIL-SPEC standards. These machines also provide vPro manageability, so IT departments can remotely update and control their fleets. If you settle on this line, be sure to check out our 5 essential accessories for EliteBooks.
EliteBooks are divided into two series:
- EliteBook 1000 Series: The highest-end HP business laptops use premium materials and higher-end components.These products cost well over N300,000. Common features include CNC-aluminum chassis, pen input, Thunderbolt 3 ports and 2-in-1 form factors. Standout models include the EliteBook x360 G2 and EliteBook 1020 G2. (Choose from here).
- EliteBook 700/800 Series: Made for mainstream knowledge-workers, these laptops still offer the latest components. Common features include aluminum chassis, SSDs, full-HD screens and a variety of docking options. The EliteBook 820, 830 and 840 G5 all have innovative, rear-facing microphones that you can use to conduct better conference calls.
ProBook: Made for small business
Designed for small-to-medium-size businesses that don’t necessarily have large IT departments, HP ProBooks are less expensive than EliteBooks but still made to help you get work done. Some ProBooks also have old-time, legacy ports such as VGA connectors.
ProBooks are divided into two series:
- ProBook 600 Series: Secure enough for large businesses that are on tighter budgets, these laptops come with Intel vPro manageability, flexible docking options and some very slim models. These laptops start as low as N250,000. (Choose from here).
- ProBook 400 Series: Made for smaller businesses, this midrange line offers USB Type-C docking and a choice of Intel or AMD processors. These computers come in 14-, 15- and 17-inch sizes. They laptops start at under N200,000.
Our Top Picks
- Best Overall: HP Envy x360: Well-built laptop that makes few compromises on its specs.
- Best 2-in-1: HP Spectre x360 2-in-1: Touchscreen that flips back 360 degrees, it also has the flexibility of a tablet.
- Best Budget: HP Pavilion 15t: Provides ample space for multitasking and watching videos.
- Most Portable: Newest HP Lightweight Stream Pro 11.6″ Notebook: This compact machine is certainly one you can tote around in your bag all day.
- Best for Students: HP Chromebook 11: Perfect for students who want a strong performer, both when it comes to work and entertainment.”
- Best for Gaming: HP Omen 17: Hard-core gamers can enjoy playing demanding games with blazing speed.
- Best for Business: HP ProBook 450 G5 15.6″ Business Ultrabook: A great choice for the businessperson who values power.”
Now that you’ve found the perfect laptop, it’s time to get back to doing what you do best. You can start working, searching, streaming, or gaming with the peace of mind that you’re backed by the power and performance of an HP laptop.