HP Envy 15: User Review

by Javier Dux


A year and a half ago my old Laptop started to sound like a spaceship about to take off. That's when I knew a new laptop was necessary. I looked around for a few days before making the final decision, when I stumbled on the HP Envy 15. Being a previous HP owner, this laptop seemed the right choice to me. What caught my attention was the case, unlike the old laptop's this one isn't made of aluminum. HP appears to have a thing for aluminum cases. However, it caused it to overheat quite frequently. Leaving that aside, it retains many of the features of my old laptop, such as the fingerprint reader, which was a deciding factor in getting the laptop. It came with Windows 10 operating system, so being the owner of a Windows Phone the first thing I did was connect the two. By doing this it gave me easier mobility of documents and pictures alike. Before going any further, here are the basic specs of the laptop:


When it comes to the battery life, as with most laptops, it depends on what you are doing. In my experience, I spend a lot of time streaming videos/series and playing video games. However, the discrepancy between the battery drain in these two situations is enormous. If playing video games, the battery will usually go down from 100% to about 20% in an about two hours or less. It can be annoying, but we all know some games tend to be demanding. On the other hand, when streaming videos, the battery doesn't seem to drain as fast. I can comfortably watch three episodes of something like Game of Thrones, and the battery will still be fine. If you mostly use the laptop to blog and surf the web, the battery can last you up to four hours if you decide to turn on the battery saving option. Charging is not an issue; it usually takes around forty or fifty minutes to be fully charged from around 10% battery.


Sideshot of the HP Envy

Side shot of the HP Envy

With 8 GB RAM, there's enough to do non-heavy multitasking. Unlike other HP models, during long gaming hours, this laptop does not overheat. However, you can still hear the fan trying to keep the laptop cool. With that out of the way, the graphics card might not be the best, but a lot of games can still be played in mid and even high settings. In my case, the most demanding game I play would be Elder Scrolls Online, and I don’t have a problem running it in high detail at a decent FPS. Despite being slimmer than its predecessors, Envy 15 is still a little bulkier than most notebooks. Weighing around 5 pounds, it can be annoying to carry around by hand, so I always use a backpack. This laptop is more the kind of stationary laptop that you don't move around unless you have to, though a 10 minutes walk with it on your hands won't kill your arms.


The case seems sturdy enough to take the occasional hit, though I bet no one is confident enough to drop their laptops and see if it survives. I have accidentally sat on it in the past, and nothing happened, which being honest did surprise. Sturdier than it looks. Something that I often do is hit the edges against pretty much everything. At first, I expected them to chip, but as I began to realize nothing happened, I stopped worrying.


Audio system


Integrated Beats Audio system

Pretty much everyone listens to music while using personal computers. Though often with headphones to not disrupt other people, every once in a while is great to just blast out some tunes from your laptop. This model has an integrated Beats Audio system which delivers excellent sound quality. Many laptops suffer from the common problem “The higher the volume goes, the more distorted the sound gets,” not this one. Turning the volume up to 100% won’t change diminish the sound quality it offers. As redundant as this might sound, it only makes it louder, more powerful, which is a great thing to have.

Screen resolution

A decent resolution and a great size, not too big but not too small. Streaming any media and video games is perfect. Owners of small laptops might struggle to multitask and fit as many items as they want in their toolbar or desktop, but it’s not the case with the HP Envy 15. At 1366×768 pixels and 15.6 inches, there’s enough space (and high resolution too)to fit everything you want. You won’t struggle to keep two different windows at the same time, and a reasonable size, sufficient to do whatever you want to do.

Fingerprint Scanner

HP Envy fingerprint sensor

HP Envy fingerprint sensor

This sensor is, in my opinion, the greatest feature the laptop has. It adds a secure and personal layer of security, not only to the user login but to many other apps too. It can be configured to use to log in social media and even sites like Paypal. Having this extra measure of added security means only you will be able to get in your laptop and no one else.  


Cooling system

The only thing I have to complain about is a huge con, the cooling system. It does the job, keeps the laptop from overheating, but it doesn’t mean it won’t get hot. The temperature doesn’t reach dangerous levels, but I don’t think it should get that hot. I’ve noticed during long gaming hours it does tend to get hot, and the fan kicks in. When this happens, the fan gets really loud, which can be obnoxious. Since I tend to use headphones a lot of the time, I don’t notice it, but the times I am not using them the noise is plain annoying.


Overall I’m pretty happy with this laptop. I’ve used it for school, easy to carry around in a bag. Gaming, it plays the games I like at an excellent definition. I haven’t run into any troubles with it, runs smoothly and doesn’t take long to boot up. If I had to recommend a laptop to a friend I would tell them to check out the Envy series by HP. If you would like to know more about this laptop such as in-depth specifications or any other details, see the official HP Support page for the Envy 15 by yourself. To sum it up, I give this laptop a rating of…