HP ENVY 17t-j100 Leap Motion

17-inch Laptop With Motion Controls Built In

HP Envy 17t-j100 Leap Motion 17-inch Laptop PC
HP Inc.
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HP was one of the few companies to integrate the Leap Motion 3D controller into their computers. They have since discontinued producing it in their laptops but still offer it in some of their desktop PCs through a special HP Leap Motion Keyboard. It may still be possible to find the systems for sale used. If you are looking for a large screen laptop, check out my Best 17-inch and Larger Laptops for a more current list of available models.

The Bottom Line

May 7 2013 - The HP ENVY 17t-j100 Leap Motion has a unique feature that sets it apart from other 17-inch laptops by including the 3D gesture interface controller. The problem is that this is still very gimmicky and should only attract those that really want or will use a software package compatible with it. Outside of this feature, the system does offer a plethora of storage space, Blu-ray capability, excellent keyboard and one of the lightest 17-inch systems on the market. The biggest issue with the system is that it is fairly noisy in operating from cooling fans that seem to run constantly. In the end, the HP is still one of the best general purpose 17-inch laptops on the market as long as you are not intending to use it primarily for PC gaming.

Purchase the HP Envy 17t-j100 via Amazon.com

Pros

  • Lots of Storage Space
  • Excellent Keyboard
  • Very Lightweight

Cons

  • Leap Controller Has Limited Use
  • System Can Be Noisy From Cooling Fans

Description

  • Intel Core i7-4702MQ Quad Core Mobile Processor
  • 8GB PC3-1200 DDR3 Memory
  • Two 1TB 5400rpm SATA Hard Drives
  • Blu-ray Reader and DVD Burner Combo Drive
  • 17.3" WUXGA (1920x1080) Display With 720p Webcam
  • NVIDIA GeForce GT 750M 4GB GDDR5 Graphics Processor
  • Gigabit Ethernet, 802.11b/g/n Wireless, Bluetooth
  • Four USB 3.0, HDMI, Leap Motion Controller, 4-in-1 Card Reader
  • 16.4" x 10.8" x 1.21" @ 6.1 lbs.
  • Windows 8

Review - HP Envy 17t-j100 Leap Motion

Mar 7 2013 - HP has kept the basic design of their ENVY laptops mostly unchanged for the last few years. It is constructed of silver aluminum with black accents on the keyboard and bezel. The system is relatively thin at just one and a fifth inches thick but is incredibly light at just over six pounds that makes it one of the lightest available on the market. Overall, it has some nice build quality to it and a very clean and stylish design.

Powering the HP ENVY 17t-j100 is the Intel Core i7-4702MQ quad core processor. This is a very fast processor but buyer's should be warned that it is actually slightly slower than the i7-4700MQ processor even though it has a higher model number. Even with this slight difference, the system still provides a solid amount of performance for those looking at doing demanding tasks like desktop video editing work. The processor is matched up with 8GB of DDR3 memory that provides it with a smooth overall experience with Windows.

The storage for the HP ENVY 17t-j100 still uses traditional hard drives rather than using either solid state or solid state hybrid options.

This means that the performance is not as quick when loading up programs or Windows. Instead, the system offers a huge amount of storage space for applications, data and media files by use two 1TB hard drives. This means it has twice as much storage as your average 17-inch laptop system. So in essence, it trades off performance for a greater amount of storage space. Should you still require additional storage space, there are four USB 3.0 ports for use with high speed external hard drives. Another aspect of the system is the inclusion of a Blu-ray compatible drive. This allows for playback of the high-definition video format that most laptops still lack.

It also has the ability to playback or record to CD and DVD media as well.

The display for the HP ENVY 17 is one of its best features. The brightness, color and clarity are all above average for this class of laptop. Viewing angles still suffer a bit but are more than acceptable. This version is not a touchscreen but this allows it to feature an anti-glare coating that makes it a bit easier to use outside than the glossy coatings required for a touchscreen. The graphics for the system are handled by the NVIDIA GeForce GT 750M graphics processor. This is a mid range option that offers it with a decent level of 3D performance such that it can be used for PC gaming but it will have to run at less than the 1920x1080 native resolution of the screen in order to have smooth frame rates. The system does benefit more from having the graphics be used to accelerate non-3D applications though because it comes with a very high 4GB of video memory which is useful for applications such as Photoshop.

HP continues to use their excellent isolated keyboard design that offers an excellent level of comfort and accuracy. Even with the fair amount of space left on either side of the keyboard and the inclusion of the numeric keypad, the keyboard did not feel cramped at all. Below the trackpad is a large trackpad that features integrated buttons. It offers an accurate experience and has no trouble with multitouch gestures for Windows 8. What sets this laptop apart from others is the inclusion of a Leap Motion controller just below the keyboard and to the right of the trackpad.

This allows for 3D gesture controls. While it can be used for a pointer device in general Windows applications, it isn't very practical as your hands get very tired. Instead, it is best used with Leap enabled applications. Most of these are just entertainment at this point but you should really check out the list of compatible applications before opting for this laptop. The non-Leap version is priced around $100 less.

HP uses a 62WHr capacity battery pack in the ENVY 17 that falls below many 17-inch system battery packs but still above some others on the market. In digital video playback tests, the system was able to run for four and a half hours before going into standby mode. This is very good considering its size and weight as it outlasts most 17-inch systems with larger batteries but also higher performance components. It still is not quite as long as the Dell Inspiron 17 7000 Touch system that goes for six and a half hours but it is using a lower power dual core processor.

Pricing for the HP Envy 17t-j100 Leap Motion is $1540 list but typically found for around $1300. The closest competitors for a general purpose 17-inch laptop come from Acer and Dell. The Acer Aspire V3 772G uses the same processor but offers a bit more performance from the use of a solid state drive and a faster GTX 760M graphics processor. It even has a lower $1200 price tag. The downside is that it offers much shorter running times and is thicker and heavier than the HP. The Dell Inspiron 17 Touch on the other hand has much less performance from using the dual-core i7-4500U processor.

To make up for this, it offers much longer running times and comes with a nice touchscreen display. Dell's system is even thinner than the HP but does weigh more.

Purchase the HP Envy 17t-j100 via Amazon.com