What do you think when you hear the term business laptop? Personally, I would think of something really ordinary looking, decently powered, and probably packed full of security features.
Now technically, most of that is still true, though the design has definitely improved a whole lot in the past couple of years for this segment. But this? This is a little different.
This is the HP ProBook x360 435 G7, and what makes this different right off the bat, are the specs.
Unlike most business laptops which run Intel vPro processors, this is actually running an AMD chip. To be specific, it’s powered by an AMD Ryzen 7 4700U, 16GB of RAM and 1TB of NVMe storage.
Now, if you’ve been following the channel, you’ll know that I’m quite a big fan of AMD, especially for the past year or so with Ryzen, which simply just offers so much more for the price. In fact, I’m running the Ryzen 9 3900XT on my desktop behind me, and it’s awesome. But anyway, this here, is no exception.
With that Ryzen 7 4700U sporting 8 cores and 8 threads, it scored admirable results in Cinebench R20, with a Multi-Thread score of 2576 and a Single-Thread score of 455. This is pretty much on par with the heavyweights like the Intel Core i7-10750H, but at half the wattage.
Even in DaVinci Resolve, although not as great as the bigger Ryzen 7 4800U, it still managed to do decently well, with the 10 minute 1080p edit taking about 53 minutes to render, and the 15 minute 4K edit taking about 1 hour and 11 minutes to render. Of course, this is all taking into account how Resolve likes beefy GPUs, and the thermal constraints of this specific laptop, which I’ll touch upon later.
But back to the laptop, and as you can tell, the design looks just like most high-end consumer laptops nowadays. It’s made entirely out of aluminium and is basically premium to the touch and really sturdy at that.
For the display, you do get a few options depending on where you’re from, but for our unit, it’s a 13 point 3 inch 1080P IPS panel that fully supports touch, covers 100% sRGB and has a max brightness of about 380 nits.
It’s a great display, be it just for general usage, or watching videos on YouTube. Though of course, no matter which display you choose, they are all glossy. No option for matte here.
Now my only gripe thus far would be the size of the bezels on the top and bottom of the display. This is a 13.3” display, yet because of this, it makes the laptop actually physically larger and doesn’t really look that modern, compared to what we have on the market nowadays. But if you’re using this more often in tablet mode, then I guess it’s not too bad.
Now with it being a 360 product, you can, of course, flip the display all the way around and use it as a tablet should you so desire, or prop it up upside down on the table in a sort of tent mode, to well, watch YouTube.
HP also provides a pen with the ProBook, so if you’re the kind of person who prefers to actually physically jot down notes, or perhaps sketching or drawing, this might be great for you as well.
Now the astute of you all might notice that there’s actually a camera built-in on the deck. Now, this is the secondary camera. You do also get a primary camera located in its usual position, complete with a privacy shutter that’s pretty much standard across all business laptops. But this second camera basically allows you to easily snap photos or videos in tablet mode, and allow you to quickly send over what you’ve just captured in an email, or perhaps simply showing live in a conference call.
It’s definitely not groundbreaking, neither is it unique… but it might prove handy depending on your situation.
A laptop isn’t a great laptop if the keyboard and trackpad are bad, but I’m glad to say that these are two things you don’t have to worry about. I barely made any mistakes while typing, and it was actually pretty comfortable to type for long periods at a time, while the trackpad simply felt great. No qualms at all.
Speakers were also decent as well. With up-firing speakers from the deck, you get pretty clear sound and a decent soundstage. Bass is of course slightly lacking, but in all, it’s okay for what it is.
Ports-wise, you get your power port, a Type-C port, two standard USB 3.1, of which the one on the left supports charging, HDMI 1.4b, headphone/mic combo and a microSD card reader.
As for battery life, you get a 45-watt hour battery with this, and it’ll last you roughly 8 hours on average in a real-world usage scenario.
Now thus far, this has been pretty much like any other laptop I’ve reviewed… and you’ll be right.
The lines between a business laptop and a consumer or prosumer laptop aren’t as distinct as it was before. Pretty much, the main advantages you get with a business laptop is the extended warranty service, the inclusion of a privacy shutter for the webcam, and a few additional software from the company to bolster security.
What intrigued me though, was the use of a standard Ryzen 7 4700U, and not any of the Ryzen Pro processors, which is AMD’s counterpart to Intel’s vPro. Though I guess HP was kind of managing between performance and thermals, as there isn’t an 8 core 8 thread Ryzen Pro processor for laptop, only the higher end 8 core 16 thread.
As I mentioned in our Resolve benchmarks, the reason why the render times were much slower was because of the thermal constraints of this laptop. Although it’s pushing 25 watts under load, the temperatures were in the 90s and clock speeds take a hit. To add on, the fan was barely audible throughout the whole render, never spinning up at all.
My guess is that HP tuned this ProBook to make the most use out of the 4700U in most business scenarios while keeping noise to the bare minimum. Which of course, does not include video editing.
All in all, though, this has been pretty interesting, and I know most of you aren’t going to be looking at this laptop. But here’s the takeaway. AMD is also slowly getting a foothold into the business segment, and that’s a good sign.
For more information about the HP ProBook x360 435 G7 or to support us, get it on Amazon here.