HP Laptop Keyboard Problems — the Computer is Personal Again? Maybe not

by Reads (166,832)

While HP has done a nice job taking laptop market share from Dell and launching a slick marketing campaign using the slogan "the computer is personal again", we wonder why their quality control, tech support and respect for customers isn’t following suit with this campaign. We present the woeful and now epic tale of the HP Pavilion dv8000 and other dv series laptops that have keyboards with a mind of their own.

How it Started

The HP Pavilion dv8000 notebook is a 17" multimedia laptop from HP that was sold in the first half of 2006 (view large image)

It all started on a fateful June day when a poster in the NotebookReview.com forums posed the question "dv8000 series keyboard problems. Anyone else?" This poster had been thinking he was losing his mind based on the randomness of his keyboard registering keystrokes. Sometimes key presses wouldn’t register unless you hit a key in precisely the "right place". Sometimes the space bar wouldn’t register at all. Sometimes CAPS LOCK CAME ON RANDOMLY AND EVERYTHING HE TYPED WAS STUCK IN CAPS. But then other times he wanted Caps Lock on and it didn’t work. And sometimes the Shift key would stick after being pushed. The poster also noticed other places on the web with similar complaints:

I could go on listing sites where the web denizens have typed (or at least tried to type) out their misery, but you get the point right?

HP keyboard problem discussion will cause us to have to increase database server storage capacity

Apparently the HP section of the NotebookReview.com forums became the "go to" place for discussion of keyboard problems related to some of the Pavilion notebooks. Namely the dv8000 and dv5000 line. Here’s just a sample list of threads related to the HP keyboard problem we have in the forums here:

In case that’s not enough evidence to make you believe there’s at least some type of problem, witness this video a forum member took of his dv8000t keyboard acting up:



We know HP knows about this problem, but do they care?

A couple of our members in the forums were privileged enough to have contacts or know of people that worked for HP in Taiwan. Without disclosing any names, a person with the dv8000 contacted me via email and indicated he bought the notebook and noticed the keyboard problem right away. He knew a guy who works for the HP notebook hardware division in Taiwan so sent him an email. It turns out that the friend actually worked in the design group for the dv8000 so they got on the phone and worked through a few things, and even got the person that designed the keyboard area involved with the conversations. People in the hardware division had not heard of this problem before (this was in August) but soon after HP sent out an email for this problem to be tested. So as of 4 months ago we know HP was looking into the problem. This specific person that was unhappy with his dv8000 keyboard got a replacement in the form of a dv9000z and was asked to send his dv8000 to an HP center for one of the engineers to look at.

In order to get the dv9000z replacement for the mal-working dv8000 the NBR member was given "special" customer support. Other members on NBR have had to ship their notebook back to HP several times to "fix" it, but usually their notebook ended up getting scratched and damaged in the process and never at all fixed.

We asked HP to comment on the issue and they did indicate to us a BIOS update had been released to hopefully fix the problem, but when forum members tried this "fix" it turned out to be another false hope. To date there is no fix for this keyboard problem. It’s likely a hardware issue as users have indicated the problems exist in both Windows and Linux. It seems the best solution is to send in your laptop about 3 times for repair, then demand a new replacement notebook. Another solution is to post a video on YouTube.com as our forum member that took this approach is magically getting helped out with a new HP notebook now. No, they’re not giving him another dv8000.




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