I bought the HP DM4-1050ea a few months ago, to replace my bulky and aging Acer notebook. I wanted a laptop that was compact yet powerful, and in these respects the HP did not disappoint.
The positives of this laptop are numerous, but most notable must be the speed of the thing. The Intel Core i5 Processor (one of the main selling points for me) really impresses, and quickly completes tasks such as decompressing .rar files (a several Gigabyte .rar file takes less than a few minutes to extract). It handles HD videos with ease, and skipping to a certain point within the video is quick too.
The only downside if the lack of dedicated graphics. This hasn't really affected me, and it runs The Sims 3 with no trouble at all, but it is definitely not a gaming laptop.
Given the specifications, the battery life is pretty impressive. I have spent an entire 2 hour 30 minute train journey playing Sim City 4 (!), and still had juice to spare when I got in. Playing a 2 hour HD film tends to use up around half of the battery, and in the library when word processing and messing about on the internet, the battery tends to last me most of the day.
Aesthetically, the laptop is nice looking in my opinion. The brushed aluminium lid and interior look and feel solid. The slight downside is that, for me at least, the interior metal seems to love picking up dirt - just spots of it here and there. I don't have a clue where it comes from, it just seems to attract it! But it is easily cleaned with a damp cloth, or even just a licked finger..!
The keyboard is extremely pleasing, with good feedback on the keys, and a nice matte black finish. The function keys double as shortcut keys, for pause, volume, etc, and prove very useful indeed. There is also a wireless off/on key, with an indicator light, which is useful when trying to conserve power.
The trackpad is an acquired taste, one could say. When I first got the laptop it took me a while to get used to, as the left and right buttons are part of the trackpad (it is like one big button), but once you get used to it it is fine, and the multitouch capabilities can be useful, if only for 2 finger scrolling (the rotate functions seem to take 5 or 6 attempts, by which point one may as well just have right clicked...!).
Two final points.
Firstly, the inclusion of a fingerprint reader is extremely useful for logging into Windows 7, as you don't have to enter your password every time. However, don't rely on it for storing passwords in web browsers, as it doesn't work in Google Chrome, and is temperamental in Firefox.
Secondly, the speakers are poor. It is probably to be expected from a laptop of this size, and it doesn't affect me as I use headphones or external speakers, but let it be known: they are tinny, and weak!
To conclude, this is a top little laptop, with great specifications given the price and size. The battery life is good, and it is extremely quick. The lack of a dedicated graphics card is a notable omission, but does not affect the everyday performance.
Aesthetically it is pleasing on the eye, and easy and enjoyable to use. I am enjoying using it, and would recommend it to anyone.
I ordered this from laptopsdirect.co.uk early evening and it arrived the next day all the way up here in the North of Scotland which is amazing in itself. However, the real amazement comes when you open this beauty up. The etched case and solid feel make it a joy to hold and the chiclet style keyboard layout minimise typing errors. It is powered by an Intel i5-430M processor with 3Gb of RAM and provides you with a reasonable 320Gb hard drive. The 14 inch screen is great with vibrant colours and viewing angles are good. The extras of Wireless N, gigabit ethernet and a built in webcam are all welcome as is the 64bit version of Windows 7 Home Premium.
The specifications make this a speedy laptop which will handle most tasks you throw at it with ease except for any more advanced gaming as it has an integrated graphicsd chip unfortunately!
The track pad takes a bit of getting used to as it has the multi-gesture feature which allows you to flick through photos etc and I advise that you take the time to learn these fetaures otherwise weird things happen to your screen by accident as things get flung around!
The preinstalled generic software (commonly known as bloatware) is a pain as it takes a fair but if uninstalling as lots of it is not useful. One feature that is good though is a quick boot for internet browsing. This allows you to not start up Windows but instead boot quickly into a web browsing function - handy if you don't need the full functionality of your laptop when you just want to browse quickly.
So a great powerful laptop, not a gaming machine, too much bloatware, great to look at and use, and finally a top laptop which almost made it laptop of the year in a very recent awards announcement!!