HP’s the number one maker of computers in the world, mostly thanks to their Pavilion consumer-grade notebooks. But they’ve got a pretty wide array of laptops tailored to business users as well, and the penny-pinchers among them will find something to like in the ProBook b-series and s-series. The two families cover a range of screen sizes from 14 inches all the way to 17.3 inches, with prices to match.
First, the more conservative b series. The 14-inch version comes in two separate models, the ProBook 6470b and ProBook 6475b. The difference between them is the processor: the 6470b gets Intel Core Sandy Bridge processors, while the 6475b goes with AMD’s dual-core or quad-core offerings matched to Radeon HD 7000G-series graphics cards (the Intel model has a Radeon HD 7570M optional). RAM goes up to 16GB, and storage is the standard mix of hard drive and SSD options. The displays start at a pedestrian 1366×768, but you can upgrade to a 1600×900 panel.
The 6570b is nearly identical to the 6470b, with the addition of a 15.6-inch display. All three models get expansion from two USB 3.0 ports, a combination USB 2.0/SATA port, ExpressCard, SD card slot, optional docks and secondary batteries, and optional Blu-ray RW drives. 720p webcams and pointer sticks are also optional. There’s a full range of Windows 7 options, as well as FreeDOS and SuSE Linux.
The ProBook s-series is a bit of a step down in features, but is more flexible, with the 4440s and 4441s 14-inchers, 4540s and 4545s 15-inchers and 4740s 17-inch models. All use 1366×768 panels, except the 4740s which bumps it up to 1600×900. All of them get Intel Ivy Bridge processors (except for the the 4545s, which is is AMD), optional discrete Radeon HD 7650M graphics (1GB or 2GB), a maximum of 8GB of RAM and a multi-card reader. DVD and Blu-ray options are available, as is a 720p webcam. The 15 and 17-inch versions get a full numeric keypad, and all of them have two USB 3.0 porta nd HDMI 1.4. All get the same OS options as the b-series.
HP hasn’t announced pricing or availability for the ProBook b-series and ProBook s-series yet.