A few months ago we published our review of the HP ProBook 6360b, the latest addition to the "b" series notebooks from HP and their first in a 13.3 "form factor. Today we are looking at another business-class notebook from HP, the EliteBook 8460p. As the name suggests, this system is a step up from the business-oriented 6360b standard and is therefore billed as a large enterprise product. The "professional" EliteBook costs about $ 300 more than that ProBook, but is it worth it premium?
Our test device is equipped with an Intel Core i5-2520M with 2.50 GHz (3.2 GHz Turbo Boost), 4 GB DDR3 memory with 1333 MHz, a 320 GB hard drive with 7200 rpm, Intel Centrino 802.11 a / b / g / n and Bluetooth 2.1 + equipped EDR, a replaceable 6-cell Li-Ion battery (62 Wh), an optical DVD +/- RW SuperMulti DL drive with LightScribe and a 14.0-inch HD anti-glare display with LED background lighting and a native resolution of 1366 x 768. The graphics are processed with an AMD Radeon HD 6470M with 1 GB of dedicated DDR3 memory.
As configured today, our sample machine at Newegg costs $ 1,061.99.
The system measures 13.31 "x 9.11" x 1.25 "(W / D / H) and weighs 4.56 pounds, making it slightly thinner than the 6360b but almost half a pound heavier at the same time reduced thickness means the system is still a bit thicker than most of the other current notebooks we've looked at.
At first glance, the two business notebooks look very similar, but there are some pretty obvious differences. Similar to the ProBook, the EliteBook has an HP DuraFinish wipe, wear and scratch-resistant coating on the outer shell, which keeps the system looking new for longer.
The color is different as the EliteBook has a platinum color while the ProBook has a tungsten tint. The same stylized HP logo is on the lid. This device features an upgraded HP DuraCase that meets military standards (MIL-STD 810G for drop, vibration, dust, temperature, shock, altitude, and high temperature).
On the front of the EliteBook there is a snap-button style lid closure on the lower base. There are four hole-sized LED activity indicators on the left. From left to right: WiFi, power, charging, and hard drive activity.
On the right side there are accommodations for headphones and a microphone, an eSATA / USB combo port, a USB port with power supply, a DisplayPort port, ventilation slots and a Kensington lock slot. On the back of the notebook there is a modem socket, a VGA output and a network socket. The aluminum hinge and the replaceable battery are also clearly visible from this point of view.
The left side shows the power connector, the 1394a connector, two USB 3.0 connectors, an SD / MMC card reader, a 54 mm ExpressCard slot and the optical drive.
The bottom of the notebook is almost identical to what we saw on the ProBook, which was pleasing. There are several rubber feet for stability and buoyancy, a docking connector and a secondary battery connector. This notebook also shares the same quick release access panel so you can easily get inside for maintenance or upgrades.
There is an additional RAM expansion bay under the access door and it looks like the optical drive can be removed by removing a screw.
We found the speaker placement a bit strange. This EliteBook uses two speakers: one is to the left of the lid latch near the front of the system, while the other is to the left of it near the side of the system next to the tray drive. We'll examine the implications later in the review.
The six-line chiclet-style keyboard is practically identical to that of the ProBook. Again, this is a good thing as we really liked the layout and feel of this board. There is no backlight, although HP has placed a tiny flip-out keyboard light on top of the display next to the webcam. It's a nice touch, but practically useless.
One major difference, however, is that HP has integrated a point stick and two selection buttons – very similar to the TrackPoint pointing device from Lenovo. Additionally, the touchpad is 0.5 inches wider than the ProBook and the mouse click buttons retain the same great feel.
In a conference call to discuss the features of the notebook, HP claimed the touchpad was made of chemically reinforced glass. However, when I pressed for more details, the HP team declined to comment on the nature of the chemical or any other topic.
A fingerprint reader is located on the right side of the palm rest just below the arrow keys. The 14.0-inch LED-backlit HD anti-glare display is surrounded by a black bezel that looks matching. There is an integrated webcam above the display with two microphones on both sides of the lens. However, we didn't get one there for testing. Optionally, external batteries are available that can be attached to the bottom of the ProBook for a longer battery life, including the BB09 Ultra Extended Life battery, which requires a runtime of up to 32 hours.