To help us provide you with free impartial advice, we may earn a commission if you buy through links on our site. Learn more

HP Pavilion DM4 review

Our Rating :
Price when reviewed : £570
inc VAT

Decent performance and a great design, but the keyboard is a bit annoying


14 in 1,366×768 display, 2.0kg, 2.3GHz Intel Core i5-2410M, 4.00GB RAM, 500GB disk, Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit

If you want a laptop that’s comfortable enough to work off on a daily basis, yet light enough to carry around, HP’s Pavilion DM4 certainly looks attractive. With a 14in screen and attractive, yet compact, bronze-metallic chassis, the D4 weighs 2kg. It might not be as light as an ultra-portable, but comes with other benefits such as an internal optical drive and more powerful internal components.

HP Pavilion DM4

Before you even turn on the DM4, it’s clear that design has played a big part in its creation. Aside from the power button, there are no multimedia keys or LEDs to detract, giving the laptop a pleasing minimalist look. The contrasting black keyboard and touchpad complete the look, making this one of the nicer looking laptops we’ve seen recently. This simplification hasn’t had too much of an effect on connectivity, as you still get a DVD re-writer, a combined USB/eSATA port, two further USB ports and a multi-format card reader.

HP Pavilion DM4 left

Previous HP laptops suffered from an overly sensitive touchpad, but we were very happy to find almost all the problems have been ironed out for this latest model. Instead of physical buttons, pressing down anywhere on the touchpad will register a click; right clicks are only recognised at the bottom right, but anywhere else will activate a left click. There was none of the jumpiness we’ve experienced in the past, which made the DM4 a delight to use.

The keyboard was more of a mixed bag. Each key produced a satisfyingly firm action with plenty of tactile feedback, but HP’s reconfigured function keys quickly became a source of frustration. Because each one has been repurposed as a multimedia key, you have to hold both the fn and alt keys to use standard Windows shortcuts. If you use shortcuts a lot, this could soon become annoying.

HP Pavilion DM4 keyboard

It’s a shame that the keyboard isn’t perfect, as there’s a decent laptop underneath. A dual-core Intel Core i5-2410 running at 2.3GHz, 4GB of memory and a 500GB hard disk are all good to see in a 14in laptop, which is usually the domain of underpowered low voltage components. In our multimedia benchmarks, the DM4 managed a decent overall score of 44, although this is slightly slower than scores we’ve seen from similarly-priced 15in laptops.

Pages: 1 2

Basic Specifications

Rating ***
Processor Intel Core i5-2410M
Processor clock speed 2.3GHz
Memory 4.00GB
Memory slots 2
Memory slots free 0
Maximum memory 8GB
Size 31x336x225mm
Weight 2.0kg
Sound IDT HD Audio
Pointing device touchpad


Viewable size 14 in
Native resolution 1,366×768
Graphics Processor Intel HD 3000 Graphics
Graphics/video ports VGA, HDMI
Graphics Memory 384MB


Total storage capacity 500GB
Optical drive type DVD+/-RW +/-DL

Ports and Expansion

USB ports 3
Bluetooth yes
Wired network ports 1x 10/100/1000
Wireless networking support 802.11n
PC Card slots none
Supported memory cards SDXC, MMC, Memory Stick Pro
Other ports minijack audio output, minijack microphone input


Carrying case No
Operating system Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit
Operating system restore option restore disc
Software included Microsoft Office 2010 Starter Edition
Optional extras none

Buying Information

Warranty one year RTB
Price £570

Read more