Despite pushing into markets outside of its traditional PC base, HP's still got a strong track record of creating great work laptops and desktops.
The EliteBook 840 G1 is a continuation of this legacy, being yet another unashamedly business-focused ultrabook. However, with the market now flooded with machines like it, it's reasonable to wonder what makes the EliteBook 840 G1 any different to its predecessors.
Design and build
Visually the 840 is one of the nicest ultrabooks we've seen from HP. The review unit we had boasted a metallic, black-finish metal frame that made the 840 look and feel suitably top-end. As an added bonus, the bottom of the laptop is detachable and grants access to the 840's removable 50Whr Lithium-ion battery.
Size-wise HP lists the 840 G1 as being 40 percent thinner and 28 percent lighter than its predecessor. However, using it as our primary laptop while galavanting around London from press briefing to press briefing we still found it fairly big, measuring in at 34x24x2.1cm and weighing 1.58kg.
This means for those looking for a lightweight laptop the 840 may be a little too big. Making up for its size, HP has loaded the 840 with an army of ports. The 840 features three USB 3.0 ports as well as a single USB 3.0 charging port, DisplayPort, VGA, combo stereo headphone and mic jack, AC power, docking connector and Media Card Reader inputs.
While it may be a little chunky, the 840 is also very tough. It's built to the military's MIL-STD 810G standard for ruggedness, meaning it should be bump and splash resistant. It lived up to this standard and proved far more robust than most other laptops we tested: during one unfortunate incident it survived an accidental bump into the corner of a wall while in a satchel, hassle and mark free.
We also found the 840 G1's backlit, splash-resistant keyboard and trackpad are fairly comfortable to use, and both are spacious and responsive to the touch.
Apart from its slightly large size, our only other qualm with the 840 G1's design is that, while nice to look out, the matte black finish on its chassis is prone to picking up fingerprints and quickly started to look grubby.
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