HP ProBook 4530s review

HP's consumer laptops look stylish, so it is no surprise that we're beginning to see a new flair for design in the company's enterprise models as well. With its rounded corners and plenty of brushed aluminium, the ProBook 4530s certainly stands out from other business laptops, but does it sacrifice usability for style? Tom Morgan finds out.

HP also pre-installs its own proprietary ProtectTools software, which includes drive encryption tools and a password manager. Whether it will have much use depends on your company infrastructure and your own existing security tools, but it's definitely useful to have the option.

As we would expect from a business-centric laptop, there are plenty of security features.

There is much to like about the ProBook 4530s; it has plenty of performance, a superb keyboard and good battery life, all wrapped up in a stylish chassis. At 584 excluding VAT, you get a lot for your money, although you do miss out on some of the extra connectivity we're now used to seeing in business laptops. If you can live without a smartcard reader, USB3 and FireWire on the move, the ProBook 4530s is almost unchallenged at this price making it a good value general-purpose laptop.

So what's our verdict?

Verdict

It can’t match the extensive connectivity of some of its competitors, but the ProBook 4530s is still an excellent business laptop. Beyond the eye-pleasing styling, it has solid performance at a mid-range price. The superb keyboard makes it a joy to use and battery life is above what we would expect. If you don’t mind losing a few ports, it’s a great all-round business machine.

Processor: Intel Core i5-2410M 2.3GHz Memory: 4GB 1,333MHz DDR3 RAM Graphics: Intel HD Graphics integrated / AMD Radeon HD 6490M dedicated Hard disk: 640GB Display: 15.6in 1,366x768, LED-backlit screen Features: 1.3 megapixel webcam, microphone Connectivity: 802.11b/g/n Wi-Fi, Bluetooth Ports: 4 x USB2, 1 x 4-in-one card reader, 1 x VGA, 1 x HDMI, 1 x ExpressCard/34, 1x 3.5mm headphone output, 1x 3.5mm microphone input Dimensions: 378x249x33mm (WxDxH) Weight: 2.5kg Warranty: 1 year collect and return warranty OS: Windows 7 Professional 64-bit Product code: LH311EA BENCHMARK RESULTS Image editing 71 Video encoding 50 Multiple apps 47 Overall 52 Light usage battery life – 5h 35m POWER CONSUMPTION Sleep 1W Idle 16W Active 49W

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