When it comes to ports, the HP is fairly standard. You’ll find USB 2.0 and mini Firewire connectors; headphone and microphone sockets; and a Kensington lock on the right side of the chassis. There’s also an SD card reader and a second USB socket on the left side, along with an ExpressCard 54 slot.
Wireless connections – the 2710p features 802.11a/b/g Wi-Fi – can be activated by a physical button, and there’s a switch to launch HP’s Info Centre, which lets you get system information. The rear of the machine presents a Gigabit Ethernet, 56Kb/s modem and VGA ports. Digital video connections are not supported, alas.
A proprietary connector on the bottom of the chassis lets you hook up a docking station. There’s also a socket to connect a six-cell slimline battery, which HP claims can boost battery life up to 11 hours between charges. With the standard battery in place, we struggled to better four hours, so those wanting all-day power will definitely need to invest in an additional power source.
It’s bad news when it comes to performance. The 1710p's graphics are handled by an integrated Intel GMA X3100 GPU. It’s a relatively new graphics chip, but its 3D capabilities are poor and you can forget any notion of playing anything other than solitaire in your spare time. This was borne out by a 3DMark 06 score of just 262.
Longer bars are better
A mixture of an ultra-low voltage 1.2GHz Intel Core 2 Duo U7600 processor, 1GB of memory and Windows Vista contrive to make this an annoyingly slow laptop on initial start-up. A good chunk of the performance deficit is caused by the huge amount of pre-installed applications, most of which are trial-only.
Once we disabled or uninstalled the erroneous programs, the 2710p was noticeably quicker, and a lot more suited for day-to-day use. We’d recommend upgrading to 2GB of memory as well - it helps applications to run far more smoothly.
It’s not cheap, but when it comes to usability the Compaq 2710p is first class, with loads of thoughtful touches making it a pleasure to use. The compact display offers a great compromise between colour reproduction and a reflection-free finish, and the extra screen size makes it a lot more practical than UMPC rivals. The keyboard is also excellent.
However, the ULV processor and choice of operating system has affected performance, and you’ll have to uninstall a lot of the standard applications to get the best out of it. The omission of an optical drive and high price will also put many users off.
HP Compaq 2710p tablet PC
i just bought an HP TX1340EA, VERY similar. twisty screen (of dubious benefit), touch screen (which has a weird slightly silvery sheen to it, which messes up colour representation a bit), but is a nice little box, for £700, considerably less than this, admittedly nice looking box.
windows was originally written on compaq hardware, so it always used to run best on it, tho what actually runs at all on vista is up for debate, atm! (probs with SP1, already!)
i always found the compaq brand to be usually better, stronger build.
i love these new tiny laptops'. imo it's what laptops should always have been, not vying for desktop business!
btw, i'm collecting stories about baby laptops:
if anyone has any others they think should be considered, you're welcome to let me know or post there ;)
The tx1320 is also a million miles away in terms of quality. Still, you pays your money...
the tx1320 is hardly a tablet/umpc even if they try and call it one.
Another HP laptop is better
I'm writing from an HP tx1320. Far better specs, far better performance, fingerprint scanner, DVD writer, 2Gb ram, 250GB HDD, 2 x turion, price < 1000€.
Debian installed, not even one problem. The downside is very poor battery life (2hrs).
Battery is so awful that HP gives the laprop with BOTH 4 cell & 6 cell battery.
Hmmm , to me in some ways the product specification would be closer to the two year older Toshiba Portege M200 Tablet PC in size and mass and missing optical drive .
The hard drive is a 1.8 inch unit so is limited in capacity and choice of suppliers for replacement units and is or will be replaced by a solid state unit within the products life time.
However , the other thing is that the unit can be downgraded as an option from Vista to Windows XP Tablet PC as is now being demanded by all corporate and business unit or bulk sales (chain store over the counter sales will not be so lucky in that aspect)!
It is also certified for SuSe Linux installation as well for sales to all German Municipal Authorities who have ditched Windoze (must have fixed that certain HP Bios Bug?)!
I wonder if they have that neat spiffy docking station Toshiba sold that enable to switch from portrait to landscape or back and install an additional hard drive in it's base and use an external keyboard .
As always , you pays your money and takes your choice .