HP Pavilion dM3

HP Pavilion dM3

The HP Pavilion dM3 is among our favourite ultra-thin laptops of the year. The design and performance fall in the high-end market

3 Direct

Our Rating: 85%

Our HP Pavilion dM3 Review

HP Pavilion dm3 Side Views

Design and Screen

Looking at the HP Pavilion dM3 laptop, we felt a sudden urge to go on a picnic, work at a café, or simply embark on a road trip. The HP Pavilion dM3 is ultra-thin and as light as a netbook at four pounds. This of course makes it a great laptop for those commuting or simply freelancing in different parts of the world.

The brushed aluminum frame gives the HP Pavilion dM3 a sci-fi high-tech look and feel. The curves are smooth and elegant as always with the Pavilion series. Made from top notch material, the Pavilion dM3 delivers value that matches that of more expensive laptops in HP’s product line.

The dM3’s 13-inch BrightView LED screen is ideal for any entertainment seeker. The 16:9 wide view screen makes an ordinary movie full with life. The image quality is crisp and fresh with admirable colour saturation. On the downside, the glossy surface is not a performer when exposed to direct sunlight or light source. We had trouble making out the text on the screen due to reflections. However, this seems to be the general trend with HP laptops and their glossy screens.

HP Pavilion dm3

Keypad and Trackpad

The Pavilion dM3's keyboard is among the most generous we’ve come across this year. The buttons are spaced out making it easier to type error-free. We would’ve loved for the keys to be backlit, however; we can live without this feature. The trackpad is a bit slow and hard to use, which is surprising given that the HP Pavilion Series is famous for its gliding trackpads. Not to mention, the trackpad’s glossy silver surface is a fingerprint magnet.

The increase in the keyboard’s button spacing come at a price – the dedicated multimedia controls panel is missing. Instead, the HP DM3 is equipped with a front row of controls similar to those found on the Dell Latitude laptops. The power button’s location is a bit odd at the right side – something we couldn’t possibly explain by logic or design.

Performance and Battery Life

The HP dM3’s performance is right up our alley. The Intel Core 2 Duo Processor is there to impress. From the very first moment, we could feel that we’re in for speed. In fact, watching Fast and Furious was a pleasure using the HP DM3. For starters, the dedicated graphics card makes it a breeze to load games or movies. The customer has the choice of picking between an NVIDIA or ATI chipset.

The HP Pavilion dM3 comes with new software such as the PC Dock which enables you to place shortcuts to your favourite programs for easy access. This of course is redundant given that the Windows 7 sidebar has such functionality. The built-in MediaSmart software is great for viewing and organizing the music, video, and image library.

Speaking of music, we were glad to test out some tunes on the HP Pavilion dM3's speakers. The SRS-technology makes the music resonate wonderfully in a small room. We wouldn’t recommend high volumes though – as the sound quality isn’t as beautiful as it is half way through.

Battery life is HP dM3’s most important feature. The HP designers have definitely been attending the office’s meetings and providing their input. The ultra-thin, portable frame is beautifully complemented by an extended battery life to go with the customer’s active lifestyle.

What We Liked

We liked the HP Pavilion dM3 for its solid performance, ultra-thin frame, and comfortable keyboard.

What We Disliked

We disliked the HP Pavilion dM3 for its poor trackpad and screen performance under direct sunlight.

Our Final Verdict

The HP Pavilion dM3 is among our favourite ultra-thin laptops of the year. The design and performance fall in the high-end market, however; the price tag remains affordable to mid-range users. While the trackpad isn’t what we expected, the user will definitely enjoy hours of fun surfing the internet, viewing movies, and editing documents. This all comes with a great battery life that makes commuting a breeze.

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General

Dimensions 32.6 x 23 x 2.48 cm

Processor

Processor AMD Athlon NEO X2 Dual Core
Processor Speed 1.66Ghz

Memory

RAM 4 GB

Storage

Hard Drive Size 320 GB
Hard Drive Type SATA
Hard Drive Speed 7200 rpm
Optical Drive LightScribe SuperMulti 8X DVD± RW with Double Layer Support

Graphics

Graphics Adaptor Card: ATI Radeon HD 3200
Screen Type HD LED Brightview Display
Screen Size 13.30 in
Screen Max. Resolution 1366 x 768 pixels pixels

Connectivity

Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g
Bluetooth Yes
Ethernet 10/100BASE-T
HDMI Ports 1
Multi Card Slot 5-In-1 integrated Digital Media Reader
No. of USB Slots 4

Power

Battery Type 6-cell Lithium-Ion (Li-Ion)
AC Power Adaptor 65.0 watts
Web Cam HP Webcam
Speakers Altec Lansing speakers

Input

Pointing Device Touch Pad with Vertical Scroll

Software

Operating System Windows 7 Home Premium

Cost

Typical Cost (£) 570

HP Pavilion dM3 Full Specification

General

Dimensions 32.6 x 23 x 2.48 cm

Processor

Processor AMD Athlon NEO X2 Dual Core
Processor Speed 1.66Ghz

Memory

RAM 4 GB

Storage

Hard Drive Size 320 GB
Hard Drive Type SATA
Hard Drive Speed 7200 rpm
Optical Drive LightScribe SuperMulti 8X DVD± RW with Double Layer Support

Graphics

Graphics Adaptor Card: ATI Radeon HD 3200
Screen Type HD LED Brightview Display
Screen Size 13.30 in
Screen Max. Resolution 1366 x 768 pixels pixels

Connectivity

Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g
Bluetooth Yes
Ethernet 10/100BASE-T
HDMI Ports 1
Multi Card Slot 5-In-1 integrated Digital Media Reader
No. of USB Slots 4

Power

Battery Type 6-cell Lithium-Ion (Li-Ion)
AC Power Adaptor 65.0 watts
Web Cam HP Webcam
Speakers Altec Lansing speakers

Input

Pointing Device Touch Pad with Vertical Scroll

Software

Operating System Windows 7 Home Premium

Cost

Typical Cost (£) 570

Images of the HP Pavilion dM3

HP Pavilion dm3 Side Views
HP Pavilion dm3

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