By Anne Chen  |  Posted 2006-06-19 Print this article Print

Hewlett-Packards HP Compaq nc2400 is an ultraportable business notebook that offers good battery life and a built-in optical drive—features that are bound to draw business travelers. However, a single-core processor means end users in search of performance may want to look elsewhere. The HP Compaq nc2400, which was released in May, weighs 3.6 pounds—slightly heavier than Lenovos ultraportable ThinkPad X60s but lighter than the new Lenovo 3000 v100—and sports a 12.1inch wide-screen display. With a six-cell battery, eWEEK Labs test unit ran for 5 hours and 42 minutes.
The nc2400 measures 11.1 inches wide, 8.3 inches deep, 1 inch thick at the front and 1.2 inches thick in the back.
Its slightly larger than other ultraportables we have tested, but we liked the nc2400s widescreen display, which was bright and has a 1,200-by-800 aspect ratio. Our test unit included a 1.2GHz ultra-low-voltage Intel Core Solo processor, 512MB of DDR2 (double data rate 2) SDRAM, a 40GB hard drive and a 12.1-inch WXGA display. This configuration costs $1,599. Click here to read more laptop reviews from eWEEK Labs. While the nc2400s single-core processor will be fine for tasks such as word processing and e-mail, users with more intensive work loads should instead consider laptops with Intels Core Duo dual-core processor. The nc2400 also can be configured with Intels Celeron M processors, and it uses Intels GMA (Graphics Media Accelerator) 950 with up to 128MB shared system memory. The HP system provides good connectivity options—Gigabit Ethernet, 802.11a/b/g wireless and Bluetooth connections, as well as a modem. However, unlike other ultraportables in its class—including the ThinkPad X60s—the nc2400 does not have integrated wireless WAN capabilities. We also wish the notebook had more ports. The HP Compaq nc2400 has FireWire and two USB 2.0 ports, but the ThinkPad X60s has three USB ports. Our test unit did, however, come with a docking station that adds four USB ports and an S-video port (as well as $149 to the price). The nc2400 features a full-sized keyboard and a pointing stick mouse. The laptop also has an integrated fingerprint reader and a TPM (Trusted Platform Module) component that encrypts security keys and passwords. The laptop is equipped with HP ProtectTools, a portfolio of security features and tools. Our nc2400 came equipped with a built-in DVD/CD-RW combo drive, something you wont find on many ultraportable laptops. This is especially handy for users who dont want to carry extra accessories with them when they travel. We used BAPCOs (Business Applications Performance Corp.s) MobileMark 2005 benchmark to test our HP system, which was configured with a six-cell battery. (The nc2400 also can be configured with or three-cell or nine-cell battery.) MobileMark 2005 tests notebook battery life and performance with a core office productivity test that models a mobile professionals workload. The HP Compaq nc2400 scored a laudable 342 in MobileMark 2005 tests, or 5 hours and 20 minutes of battery life. This kind of battery longevity is a big plus for road warriors. Users will also like that the nc2400 has many features to keep it working well when on the road. For example, HP Mobile Data Protection System 3D incorporates motion detection and helps protect data from shock and vibration. The laptop also sports a magnesium frame and full magnesium alloy enclosure, as well as a scratch-resistant surface to protect the keyboard. The laptop comes with a three-year warranty that includes 24/7 phone support. Next page: Evaluation Shortlist: Related Products.

As a senior writer for eWEEK Labs, Anne writes articles pertaining to IT professionals and the best practices for technology implementation. Anne covers the deployment issues and the business drivers related to technologies including databases, wireless, security and network operating systems. Anne joined eWeek in 1999 as a writer for eWeek's eBiz Strategies section before moving over to Labs in 2001. Prior to eWeek, she covered business and technology at the San Jose Mercury News and at the Contra Costa Times.

Submit a Comment

Loading Comments...
Manage your Newsletters: Login   Register My Newsletters

Rocket Fuel