HP Compaq nc6120 review
Superb battery life, plenty of features and a solid chassis make this a great business choice, particularly at this price
Review Date: 17 Feb 2006
Reviewed By: David Bayon
Price when reviewed: (£870 inc VAT)
While the Lenovo takes the Labs Winner award this month, no single notebook is ideal for every business. HP's nc6120 offers a better warranty and longer battery life, which could seal the deal for some.
With an overall 2D benchmark score of 0.80, the nc6120 is one of the best in terms of performance. This is due to the 1.86GHz Pentium M 750, and there's a spare socket to add to the 512MB of memory. An 80GB hard disk is generous, and backups can be made using the dual-layer DVD writer.
The nc6120 shares a similar chassis to HP's Labs-winning nx6125, but with the notable omission of a fingerprint reader. HP's ProtectTools utility is still included to give access to BIOS settings and passwords through Windows.
Another strength is the excellent keyboard, which has a full complement of keys that are well arranged. A shortcut button for quickly enabling the VGA output is handy, while volume controls and a Wi-Fi power button are useful too. Plus, nothing else on test comes close to the loud speakers.
The chassis is sturdily built and the 15in XGA TFT has enough protection from the lid. The screen itself is a little dim towards the top edge, which means colours aren't as bright and vibrant as on the Toshiba or Sony.
Communications are handled by the Intel 802.11b/g radio. But while there's infrared, note the absence of Bluetooth. On the front sits a card reader for most of the main media types, including xD-Picture cards. The nc6120 can also accept two Type II PC Cards or one Type III card.
Battery life is superb, topping the class with a light-use lifetime of nearly five hours. It lasted only an hour-and-a-half under intensive conditions, but general use will see far longer times than this.
HP is the only manufacturer to offer an on-site warranty as standard, albeit only for one year. Another two years of return-to-base support complete the cover, but it's worth noting that HP's notebook division received a Highly Commended award in our recent Reliability & Service Survey, so you can be confident in your purchase.
Since HP doesn't sell direct, there aren't a great deal of services on offer compared to Dell's build-to-order system. But, if you don't need a bespoke disk image and are happy to go without Bluetooth, the HP is great value for money.
Author: David Bayon
- Google ditches OpenSSL in Chrome
- Apple and Swatch to buddy up for iWatch release
- StubHub fraud: how hackers stole $1m using tickets
- Mobile success boosts Facebook's profit by 138%
- What's on this week's PC Pro podcast?
- Unlock your Moto X with a "tattoo"
- Samsung continues Tizen OS push with Galaxy Gear "upgrade"
- Killing the Surface Mini hit revenues, Microsoft reveals
- How to report website overblocking and miscategorisation to ISPs
- iPad sales stall as owners "too happy to upgrade"
- How Google Glass ruined my lunch hour
- Smartphone battery packs: can a USB power pack beat the festival battery blues?
- Windows Easy Transfer – not so "easy" in Windows 8.1
- Formula 1: what a difference virtualisation makes
- Office of the future: comfy chairs and tablets everywhere
- I went to Glastonbury and the only thing that got high was my smartphone
- Meet the robots helping teach children
- PaperLater: would you pay to print the internet?
- Amazon vs Kobo: how much to make the ebook switch?
- Phishing emails: how I nearly got caught out
- Hacking the Internet of Things: from smart cars to toilets
- BlackBerry Passport release date, specs, features, and rumours: when is the new BlackBerry coming out?
- What's changing in the computing curriculum
- Teaching kids to code
- Best free translation apps for iOS, Android and Windows Phone
- Five worst SMB security threats... and how to solve them
- Apple iOS vs Android vs Windows 8 – what's the best compact tablet OS?
- The 12 best tablets of 2014: what’s the best tablet on the market?
- How to free up hard disk space
- Driverless cars: could your next car be driven by a robot?
- How to add in-app purchasing to an iPhone, Android or Windows app
- Remote-control ransomware: TeamViewer and software hardball
- Why laptops with serial ports matter to the Internet of Things
- Make your mobile battery last longer
- Small steps into handling Big Data
- Nexus 5: does it really run stock Android?
- How to get broadband to a garden office
- How to write your company's IT security policy
- Raspberry Pi and Wolfram: a must-have for every child
- Could you get by with Office Web Apps?