Nice article, especialy useful in times when mini-notebooks, or netbooks come to be more and more popular. I am owner of HP 2510p almost 6 months and I love this notebook. It was extremly cheap for me - just 450USD from ebay. Small, well featured, ultra-light /1.6kg/ and 6-7h on 6-cell battery. Btw I think that overlaping battery is quite useful - just try it - as IT admin I use it every day - one can hold this notebook easily in one hand while doing many common service work, and type with other hand. I got my HP with Windows XP Pro, so its much faster than with Vista. I installed tripple boot on it, XP Pro, Ubuntu and Mac OSX 10.5.4 - just used external USB WiFi for Mac OSX, all other HW is working in all OSs.
I never understand while to bother with popular trends like Asus Eee - no DVD, limited HDD options, extremly LOW battery time /I expected much better performances with Atom and SSDs/, small size-display like from Gullivers fairy-tale. Thers only one good point - price. And its fun that if you want all these features on new EEE-like notebooks, you have to pay 500-700USD. So why not to pay more and have all fetures together like in HP 2510p or Toshiba R500. Or try ebay like me, and its even cheaper than new EEEs with Atom.
But maybe I am wrong and EEE targets different audience.
I cant believe you have done a review user "power" and "12.1" in the same sentence and failed to include uber powerful Asus U6V. My god this thing would blow your choices out of the water for under $1700 anywhere in north america!
HP recently introduced the 2530p with substantially faster ULV processors (up to the SL9400, 1.86GHz, 6MB L2 Cache, 1066MHz FSB) and with 2 DIMM slots for up to 8GB of 800MHz DDR SDRAM. It weighs a little more with a starting weight of 3.16lbs, but with some additonal durability features built-in, it meets the Mil-Std-810F standards for vibration, dust, humidity, altitude and high temperature. The spec's can be found at this URL: http/h18000.www1.hp.com/products/quickspecs/13101_na/13101_na.HTML
The 2510p will be going away shortly so the 2530p is the one to look at if one is considering HP.
HP also introduced the 2230s with a 12.1" screeen, and although it weighs a little more than the 2530p, it boasts a regular mobile processor such as an Intel® Core™2 Duo Processor P8400 (2.26 GHz, 1066 MHz FSB, 3 MB L2 cache). This is a new form factor for HP as this model did not replace any existing models, but rather it is a new addition to HP's notebook lineup.
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