HP Pavilion Aero 13 Review

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In this article, I give you my HP Pavilion Aero 13 review with specs included. Those who follow HP know that the Pavilion is one of their most affordable lines of laptops. Above it is the Envy and then the Spectre. So, we don’t expect a lot from a Pavilion usually but HP is really starting to get what we want.

This is a 13.3-inch ultrabook with a 16 by 10 aspect ratio display. You can get a Full HD plus or QHD plus for those who want something a little bit more premium. It’s under a kilogram (under 2.2 pounds).

This has a magnesium-aluminum casing. This is the kind of stuff you usually only see on a really premium product. And, it’s AMD Ryzen Zen 3 exclusive.

All that sounds really nice but, if it’s a thousand or fifteen hundred dollars I would expect all that good stuff anyway. Well, here’s the kicker, this one starts at seven hundred and fifty dollars. That’s why I’m excited honestly.

For that base price ($750) you get a Ryzen 5 5600U CPU, 8 GB of RAM, a 256 GB SSD, and a full HD plus display. My unit, which is configured higher, has a Ryzen 7 5800U with 16 GB of RAM and a 512 GB SSD, full HD plus display, and is around $980.

Now, keep in mind that this MSRP price is at the release date and HP tends to have a lot of sales so I wouldn’t be surprised if you’re going to see this available for less money.

If you want to add that upgrade to the QHD plus display that’s about 120 dollars more.

Something only HP does is the colors. They have four colors. They’re very nice colors. I have a natural silver, as they always call a light silver color. There is rose gold, which is kind of pinkish, and then there is gold, which is more like subtle champagne.

Anyway, if you want anything other than natural silver you’re gonna pay around ten dollars more. Not the end of the world.

Let’s look at HP Pavilion Aero 13 performance. It is Ryzen so expect good performance, better than Tiger Lakes ultrabook CPUs, certainly.

The only thing I want to change is the M.2 NVMe SSD which is upgradable, is performing okay, it’s not class-leading. But then, this is not in the thousand dollars plus price range where we expect class-leading speeds from SSDs. It’s decent enough. It’s certainly not going to feel slow to you, but there’s that.

In terms of thermals on this, it’s fine. It’s an ultrabook, it’s Ryzen, it runs fairly cool even if you’re pushing it on the hard side. And the fan is not loud by any means, which again is typical of most ultrabooks.

I expect to see good performance from HP Pavilion Aero 13. Plenty enough for Office, occasional Photoshop, video editing, the endless zoom calls, all those things that I do with my laptops. And, it does that fine, does all that without getting too hot.

As a nod to its less expensiveness (and I think this seems to be a shortage of wi-fi cards), we have Realtek Wi-Fi 6 with Bluetooth 5.2. You don’t get Intel which some people prefer for performance reasons. I didn’t have any problems with the wi-fi on this but there’s that. Looking for wherever concessions might be to make this so affordable.

Casing rigidity is good. It’s magnesium and aluminum together. Magnesium is very light, not nearly as rigid, but I’m not feeling a lot of flex on this, it feels fairly solid.

The keyboard on this is fine. It’s short-travel, like all laptops today are, ultrabooks particularly, but it feels nice and crisp and there’s a good spring to it. Maybe not quite as cushy as I would like, mostly to do with the key travel, but it’s pretty pleasant to type on.

If you want white backlighting that’s an extra $10. And we have a large precision trackpad that behaves perfectly well on board. And there’s a fingerprint scanner on the wrist rest area as well. So, good to see biometrics in the more affordable line from HP.

Now for the display options they’re both ips and matte and non-touch. If you’re on the touchscreen you’re not going to get that here. And also the display does not tilt very far back on this. So keep that in mind for those who like to put your laptop low on your knees and you need more tilt.

The display quality on this is good. The white point’s a little weird but the display overall is set up well so you wouldn’t even realize it. It’s low blue light so it’s easy on the eyes. And hp claims whether you go with the full hd plus or the qhd plus display that you’re gonna get 400 nits. We actually measured considerably above it 471 nits wow.

You can see the metrics on screen right now. It’s a nice looking screen certainly for this price class and for a pavilion. They’ve they’ve come up in the world. Connectivity is pretty much average for the class you’re not relegated to only usbc but you do have a usbc port that supports charging.

Though because there’s only one usbc port you probably want to use it for more important things like displays and hubs. It comes with a 45 watt barrel pin charger so you’re not using that up. You have two usb a ports which have the drop down jaw style openings on them because it’s too thin otherwise to fit usb a ports and an hdmi 2.0 b port.

And of course a headphone jack no sd card slot here. Speakers on this are adequate it’s a small thin and light laptop it sounds like a small thin and light laptop. Thank god for the headphone jack. So how about battery life. Again ryzen does well with battery life typically speaking. Especially in the ultrabook segment.

We have a 43 watt hour battery on board and hp claims about 10 hours of streaming time with this. And in average use with the brightness set to 150 nits doing some streaming some zoom office work that sort of thing i was getting eight to nine hours on a charge without even trying.

If i was being a little more careful with my multitasking and everything else that i was doing i you could probably get longer than that. Not bad 43 watt hours an okay capacity battery. Again not class leading like some more expensive laptops which have 56 watt hour batteries but it’s fine. It does come with a 45 watt charger. You don’t get a 65 watt charger for a little bit faster charging.

To take the bottom cover off you must have patience and a little bit of care because you have to remove the rubber strips. Yonder rubber strips front and back here. And then there’s a layer of adhesive underneath. And it’s pretty thick so the reason you have to remove that is you can actually get to the phillips head screws.

So all the screws are the same size except for one here that’s smaller so just remember that when you put it back together. And then there is some tenacious clips so work your way from the back edge here and this cover will eventually lift off.

You don’t see that every day that’s interesting there’s a little foam. And here are the internals with again a sort of like felt tape. Usually, you don’t see this either you see mylar reflective heat tape or whatever but. This is the processor right here on the heatsink and most likely I would say these are the ram modules soldered on because ram is soldered on board here. Single fan solution.

The wi-fi card is socketed and upgradable so should you not like the real tech card you could actually upgrade that after the fact. And the m2 ssd is under this heat shield. Standard 2280 m2 SSD. Speakers flanking the battery as per typical laptop design and there is the battery itself.

So there it is the hp pavilion aero 13. It is one nice-looking laptop good quality build rising inside yeah that 16 by 10 aspect ratio display and a fairly friendly price tag certainly well under a thousand dollars for the starting price not bad.

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HP Pavilion Aero 13
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    Performance - 94%
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    Price - 94%
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    Value - 94%