Review: Why HP EliteBook 8560p Ranks Among The Best


Hewlett-Packard is billing the EliteBook 8560p as among its most robust notebooks ever, and the Palo Alto, Calif.-based computer maker isn’t kidding.

Built with an Intel Corei7-2620m at 2.70 GHz, 4 GB of RAM and running Microsoft Windows 7 Professional 64-bit, this notebook is one of the best-performing PCs of any class we’ve ever reviewed -- notebook or desktop.

List-priced at $1,499, HP has pushed the envelope on price-performance with the EliteBook 8560p. It is clear that it has been built for serious work, and here is a short list of what we love about this notebook:

• Running Primate Labs’ Geekbench 2.1 benchmarking software, the EliteBook 8560p scored 7052, making it one of the few notebooks we’ve reviewed that has topped 7000 mark;

• Using the CRN Test Center standard battery life test, which is to disable power-saving utilities and run a video from the hard drive continuously until it stops, the EliteBook 8560p ran for almost six hours until the battery ran out. Given the hardware performance, that’s a big deal;

• The traditional, high-end HP engineering can be seen and felt throughout the product. The fit and finish is elegant, from its shiny, gray aluminum casing to the nifty keyboard light on top of the display;

• The on-board, 720p HD webcam is one of the better we’ve seen in any notebook, providing clear and crisp video when tested using Skype video conferencing;

• The dual-array microphones provide clear, crisp quality that make this notebook just great for communication;

• It’s loaded for media types, with four, USB 2.0 slots, a USB 3.0 slot, HDMI support, Ethernet and VGA support;

• The onboard fingerprint scanner and full number pad are placed comfortably on the far right of the full keyboard;

• The 15.6-inch display feels larger than it is, providing comfortable real estate for multi-tasking.

But a PC is not just a list of specifications or performance metrics. It’s a device that’s either great for work or less than great. The EliteBook 8560p is a device that’s great for work.

Because of all the features (in addition to those above, it also supports SD and Micro SD media), there are no performance compromises. While it weighs in at 6 pounds, 7 ounces and is not appropriate for whipping out at a Starbucks or on a plane, it is fine for transit between work and home.

The performance isn’t just fine for video playback and editing. It allowed us to breeze through a 41-MB Access Database for numbers crunching while sitting on a Skype video conference and running e-mail, TweetDeck, and multiple instant messaging applications -- all with no noticeable latency.

It’s a workhorse.

The EliteBook 8560p is built with Intel’s vPro technology and a 500-GB, on-board hard drive that supports both enterprise workloads and requirements as well as management and security needs like encryption.

The $1,499 list price makes it highly competitive and, for a Windows environment, out and out seductive. It’s one of the best notebooks we’ve seen this year and we highly recommend it for both SMB and enterprise deployments.