Review: laptop has less battery life than its HP Compaq cousin but offers 64-bit capabilities
As the first business laptop to feature Advanced Micro Devices 64-bit Turion 64 X2 mobile CPU, Hewlett-Packards HP Compaq nx6325 offers road warriors performance at a lower price than its Intel-armed competitors.
The HP Compaq nx6325, which was released in June, has a starting weight of 6 poundsabout the same weight as the similarly sized Gateway M465-E notebook and HP Compaq nc6320 and slightly lighter than Lenovo Groups ThinkPad T60.
The nx6325 sports a 15.1-inch XGA display with a 1,024-by-768-pixel native resolution. With a six-cell battery, eWeek Labs test unit ran a good 3 hours and 49 minutes.
While the unit doesnt have the battery performance of its Intel Core Duo-based sibling, the HP Compaq nc6320, the nx6325 costs considerably less. Users will need to decide whether they value price or battery life more.
At a starting price of $1,049, the nx6325 includes a 1.6GHz Turion 64 X2 processor, a 15-inch display, 512MB of RAM, a 60GB hard drive and a Wi-Fi module capable of accessing 802.11a, b and g networks. A similarly configured nc6320 would cost $1,229.
Our test unit included a 1.6GHz AMD Turion 64 X2 TL-52 processor, 1GB of DDR2 (double data rate 2) SDRAM (synchronous dynamic RAM) and an 80GB hard drive (5,400 RPM). This configuration costs $1,249.
The AMD Turion 64 X2 is a dual-core processor that has 64-bit capabilitiessomething the Intel Core Duo processor does not. Users must have 64-bit software installed to take advantage of the nx6325s 64-bit capabilities.
The nx6325 also can be configured with the TL-60, TL-56, TL-52 and TL-50 AMD Turion 64 X2 processors, as well as the Mobile AMD Sempron 3500+, 3400+ and 3200+ processors. The nx6325 uses ATI Technologies Radeon Xpress 1150 graphics card, with up to 128MB of shared system memory.
The nx6325 measures 12.9 inches wide, 10.5 inches deep and 1.2 inches thick at the front, making it slightly bulkier than similar laptops.
In addition to the nc6325s 802.11a/b/g connectivity, the laptop has a Gigabit Ethernet port and Bluetooth 2.0. Unlike other notebooks in its classincluding the HP Compaq nc6320the nx6325 does not come with an option for a WWAN (wireless WAN) module.
The nx6325 does have a good number of ports, including three USB 2.0 ports. The laptop also has a seven-in-one media reader, a feature wed like to see on more laptops.
The nx6325 features a full-size keyboard and a touchpad with scroll zone mouse, but no pointing stick mouse.
When it comes to security, the nx6325 has an integrated biometric fingerprint reader as well as a TPM (Trusted Platform Module) component that encrypts security keys and passwords. The laptop also is equipped with HP ProtectTools, a portfolio of security features and tools.
Our nx6325 sported a DVD+/-RW SuperMulti with Double Layer drive. The laptop can also be configured with a drive with HPs LightScribe technology, which allows users to engrave DVDs and CDs via the DVD burner.
We used MobileMark 2005 from Business Applications Performance Corp. to test the nx6325s battery performance. The nx6325 scored a 229 in BAPCOs MobileMark 2005 tests, or 3 hours and 49 minutes of battery life with a six-cell battery. In comparison, the nc6320 ran for 4 hours and 24 minutes in the same test.
The nx6325 can be configured with a secondary eight-cell extended life battery ($149). Also available is a $199 12-cell lithium-ion HP Ultra-Capacity Battery that provides as much as 15 total hours of battery life, according to HP.
The nx6325 we tested had a battery with HP Fast Charge Technology, which allows a user to recharge the battery up to 90 percent within 90 minutes when the system is off.
Senior Writer Anne Chen can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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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.