At the time of this writing, this configuration of the Sleekbook 6z is available in two ways at two prices. You can custom configure the notebook on the HP website for $644.99 or you can purchase a preconfigured version with the same specs (called the HP ENVY Sleekbook 6-1010us) at $599.
If you go with the $650 price point this notebook is not a standout value though the thin and light design has some allure. A standard size 15.6-inch notebook with an Intel Core i3 processor is significantly faster (though most folks won't need all that power) and offers better storage options; the Sleekbook 6z tops out at just 500GB.
Performance and Benchmarks
Performance isn't the Sleekbook 6z's strong suite by a long shot; its lower-end A6 AMD Dual-Core processor is just adequate for general everyday usage and watching HD video (YouTube 720p runs smoothly). It's actually a 'Fusion' processor where the graphics card is integrated into the processor. The included AMD Radeon graphics on this A6 version are rather slow however; they're faster than integrated Intel graphics but not sufficient for playing the latest 3D games. Their function is to aid video processing and help with graphics-accelerated applications like Photoshop.
Note the Sleekbook 6z is available with a more powerful A10 quad-core version of the same processor which should double the available processing power; it comes with slightly faster graphics to boot. It's debatable whether the current $100 upgrade price is worth it however; that's pushing the value envelope and as I noted, as configured with the dual-core our review unit is fine for everyday tasks.
The Sleekbook 6z is limited to 7mm thin hard drives and they are relatively slow. In theory you could just put a 7mm SSD inside and significantly improve system performance. However, as noted earlier, this notebook is not upgradeable without significant disassembly (it's not designed with user accessibility in mind).
wPrime processor comparison results (lower scores mean better performance):
PCMark 7 is a newer benchmark and measures overall system performance (higher scores mean better performance):
3DMark06 measures overall graphics card performance for gaming (higher scores mean better performance):
3DMark11 measures overall gaming performance in DirectX 11 games (higher scores mean better performance):
The Sleekbook 6z has one long MacBook-style vent situated under the display hinge. Air only seems to come out the right side. The fan is always on and makes a slight whine at all speeds, which is audible and noticeable. It's not loud but the sound carries. I'm not thrilled with that aspect but the setup certainly keeps the notebook cool. Even after an intensive benchmarking session, the chassis remains at room temperature top and bottom. The days of overly hot AMD processors are apparently over.
I measured an even seven hours, 30 minutes on the Sleekbook 6z's standard battery. This is an excellent time for a 15.6-inch notebook and adds a lot of value to this model; it also kind of negates the fact that the battery cannot be removed. The battery life was measured during our standard battery rundown test (Windows 7 Balanced power profile, 70% screen brightness, wireless active and refreshing a web page every 60 seconds).
Battery life test results (higher scores mean better battery life):
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