First, a couple of things. I repair laptops for a living. I've been repairing laptops for 4 years, 3 and a half of those 4 were spent almost exclusively repairing HPs, and I still occasionally fix them.
I've repaired HPs, Gateways (Acers and Emachines), Apples, Toshibas, Sonys, and Dells (as well as Alienwares, since Dell now owns the brand.)
I've literally had my hands in thousands of laptops.
I am biased because I only see laptops that aren't working.
However, HP, out of all the brands, is by far one of the worst. The dv7 line is plagued with some of the most awful problems.
All laptops have issues, they are not meant to last. They expire. Some people have really good luck with HPs, some don't. You may buy one and it may last you ten years, it may last you ten days.
I'm not telling anyone to not buy this. There are some things you need to remember.
- The brushed aluminum casing looks nice, but it's like buying a car that's painted black or white. Every single scratch, dent and piece of dust will show. If you drop it, it will dent very easily. I've seen plastic casing take a lot more abuse than any of HPs newer units with brushed aluminum cases.
- These particular models have several specific issues that span across the different versions that have been released (because even with different CPUs, they generally use all the same type of parts other than that.)
- - One being a lid switch that is part of the power circuit that has a tendency to short out, causing the entire thing not to power.
- - Another is the way the LCD cable is positioned as well as the length of it causes the webcam cable (which is part of the LCD cable) to pull out of the webcam.
- - Also, I've seen several of these units come in where the tiny wires that come off the LCD cable that power the backlit logo on the casing catch fire, and destroy the cable, and usually take the LCD and motherboard with it as well.
- - This unit has a speaker bar (across the top of the palm rest), two speakers in the front, and a subwoofer located in the top right corner. Because of this there is a crazy nest of wires in the bottomcase that are ran through and under plastics that have a tendency to already be crimped coming from the MFR and cause sound issues.
- - The access panel door on the bottom has no screws in it and is released as part of the battery latch and is very easily broken (as in when the battery is out you push the latch the other way to release the door.)
- - As some of have already noted, this is a large laptop and it is very heavy as far as laptops go.
Again, I'm not telling anyone to not buy this. If it has all the things you want and need, it may end up being the best laptop ever. I don't buy laptops, and don't intend on owning any unless I honestly need one for travel, or work, et cetera.
You may get this and it may be perfect, just be warned of it's inherent defects caused by poor design/parts.