HP 15-b142dx Inexpensive and Sleek 15.6″ Laptop (Specs Review)

Many potential buyers of cheap notebooks, especially students, are interested in the HP 15-b142dx laptop, which is a part of multiple attractive bundle packages offered at Best Buy.

HP 15-b142dx

It’s important to say that the HP 15-b142dx belongs to the affordable Pavilion Sleekbook series, consisting of various Intel and AMD based configurations with thin cases. This particular model has a 15.6-inch display and the AMD A6-4455M dual-core processor with the AMD Radeon HD 7500G integrated graphics. The CPU falls in the middle of the pack of AMD’s chips for thin-and-light laptops. It’s not an especially fast CPU and is slower than the Intel Core i3 chips used in similar notebooks to the 15-b142dx. What it is good for is daily computing like web surfing, office document editing, and similar, as well as playback of high-definition videos, including 1080p. The Radeon HD 7500G-series graphics is better than Intel HD-series in similar Intel-branded counterparts, but it still just an integrated GPU without enough 3D gaming potential.

AMD A6-4455M

On the positive side, the laptop is very portable for a 15.6-incher. It weighs only 4.6 pounds almost a pound less than average and has a height of 0.8″, almost like on ultrabooks. Some may not like glossy black plastics covering the hardware, but that’s what you get by purchasing a cheap notebook most of the time.

There’s no need to get excited about CPU/GPU performance, as well as other parts of the notebook. This is an average configuration with 4GB of RAM memory and a 500GB hard drive, also found in countless similar laptops on the market. On the other hand, the HP 15-b142dx has an admirable set of features, comprising of Altec Lansing stereo speakers with Dolby Advanced Audio technology, a 720p webcam, 802,11n wireless, Ethernet LAN for wired networking, three USB ports, HDMI video jack, and a memory card reader. What’s missing on the Pavilion Sleekbook is a built-in DVD optical drive and VGA video connector for older displays.

The battery isn’t of a high capacity. It’s a 4-cell 37WHr unit. There is no info on battery life, but judging from the specs of the battery and the whole system, it should last more than three hours at least with light web browsing use and moderate screen brightness settings. Thankfully, the battery is user removable, a functionality that is missing on the most of today’s thin laptops. You will be able to replace the battery if it dies yourself or you can buy an additional battery and use it for extra power juice (by replacing the empty battery).

When it comes to the Best Buy bundles and prices, customers in the US are offered with the HP 15-b142dx laptop, a six-month Titanium Internet Security software subscription, a Targus-branded sleeve, Logitech M185 wireless optical mouse, and an 8GB PNY Flash memory stick for $350. If you add Microsoft Office Home & Student 2013 pack the price jumps to $470, while inclusion of Office and the HP Photosmart 5520 all-in-one wireless printer increases the price to $570.

Lid of HP 15-b142dx

HP 15-b142dx Pavilion Sleekbook Specifications

  • Display: 15.6-inch BrightView (glossy) at 1366 x 768 pixels
  • Processor: AMD A6-4455M dual-core at 2.1GHz-2.6GHz, 2MB of L2 cache
  • Graphics: AMD Radeon HD 7500G IGP
  • Memory: 4GB DDR3 SDRAM, expandable to 8GB
  • Storage: 500GB Serial ATA HDD (5400 rpm)
  • Optical drive: no
  • Webcam: 720p HD webcam
  • Audio: Stereo speakers, Dolby Advanced Audio technology
  • Network: Wireless-N, Ethernet LAN
  • Input: Island-style keyboard with numeric keypad, multi-touch touchpad
  • Ports and Slots: 2 x USB 3.0 ports, 1 x USB 2.0 port, HDMI, multi-format media card reader
  • Battery: 4-cell 37WHr 2.55Ah lithium-ion battery
  • Dimensions: 0.81 x 15.19 x 10.2 inches
  • Weight: 4.6 pounds
  • OS: Windows 8
  • Warranty: 1-year

Published: June 24, 2013
  • rpets

    The power cord on this computer is the pits. I have had to replace it twice and they are $60.00. HP designed it so no general cord fits it and you have to buy from them. Would not recommend this computer.

  • Gary West

    My friend has one with a cracked screen. What is the cost of this model new please?

  • sajones

    can this computer burn dvd/cd’s?

  • Redisqovered

    Is it possible to upgrade the ram on this model? 4gb is a very small amount for 64bit.

    • Danijel

      Yes, you can. According to the official specs, 15-b142dx has two user accessible RAM slots. One of them has 4 GB module, while the other one is empty so you can put a 2 or 4 GB module in it for a total of 6 or 8 GB.

  • Amauri

    Is it possible to game on this computer with games like battle field 3 or black ops 2

    • http://techonbudget.com/ Danijel

      According to this http://www.notebookcheck.net/AMD-Radeon-HD-7500G.74861.0.html Call of Duty: Black Ops on the AMD Radeon HD 7500G runs at 28fps, 22fps, and 18fps on low, medium, and high settings, respectively, but it hasn’t been stated on what resolution. For BF3, I haven’t found any results…

  • amy

    I’m going back to school. Would this be a good laptop? I’ll need it for writing papers, slide shows, etc.

    • http://techonbudget.com/ Danijel

      Yes, the included A6-4455M CPU in the 15-b142dx is fairly decent for the tasks you’re asking about. On the other side, the Toshiba Satellite C855D-S5109 (http://laptoping.com/toshiba-satellite-c855d-s5109.html) offers the generally faster AMD A6-4400M and additionally a DVD burner for the same price of $350. However, the HP 15 is way thinner and lighter than the Toshiba C855D and you’ll maybe never notice speed difference between the CPUs if you don’t do some more complex computing task.

  • Cipher7z

    Derek, us two finger gesture to scroll. Also up/down scroll can be reversed.

  • Derek

    I just purchased this laptop. So far so good!

    Only one thing it does not seem to have a scroll on the trackpad….Am I missing something?

    • sys_nerd

      Derek, what gesture have you used for scrolling? Have you tried scrolling with one finger along the right side of the trackapad?

    • Don

      That’s a feature you have to enable in the settings. I forget how but i found it on a youtube video..

  • alimay

    I only need a laptop for word docs, photo storage, and playing games on the web. How’s the speed for web surfing? Am I going to get aggrivated while waiting? I’m trying to keep my cost down & i really like the sleekbooks.

    • http://techonbudget.com/ Danijel

      The tasks you’re talking about are light, so the HP 15-b142dx will be quite good for them. And pricing for this laptop is really attractive, so it’s a good choice.