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HP Pavillion dv2

HP Pavillion dv2 AMD Neo notebook

Thin'n'light laptop CPU takes on the netbooks

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Unlike the cheaper netbooks available, which are more functional in their design ethic rather than stylish, HP has put some effort into the dv2 and turned out a very nice looking machine.

HP Pavillion dv2

Oh, for a bigger touchpad

The extra space available means there's room for a big keyboard, which doesn't feel overly cramped to type on. The touchpad is also a decent width, although it would benefit form being a bit taller, which would bring the added advantage of pushing the buttons onto the bottom edge of the machine, making them easier to locate without looking.

On the left of the machine you'll find Ethernet, VGA, HDMI and two USB ports. Over on the opposite side sit power input, one USB port, headphone and microphone jacks, a memory card reader (SD, MMC, Memory Stick, xD), a wireless switch and a power button.

The screen stretches to 12.1in - although if the surrounding border was a bit thinner there'd probably room to squeeze in a 13in model - and the resolution runs to a 720p friendly 1280 x 800. The glossy finish provides vibrant colours, but at the expense of increased reflectivity. Above the display sits a webcam.

Like all the netbooks out there, there's no optical drive here, but HP has put an external USB Lightscribe DVD writer in the box so it's there if you need it.

HP Pavillion dv2

Standard netbook port array

Despite its relatively slow processor, the promotional material mentions the dv2 supports Blu-ray playback using a second, optional external drive. Like the Asus Eee Box B206, however, this support for HD material comes not from pure processor grunt but from the graphics chip thanks to DirectX Video Acceleration (DXVA) which can be tricky to harness at times.

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