HP 14-fq1021nr Review

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7.4 Total Score
GOOD

The HP 14 Laptop (14-fq1021nr) is an attractive, lightweight 14-inch Windows laptop with a long battery life and performance good enough for office/business productivity and streaming media.

PROS
  • Surprisingly peppy processor
  • Good battery life
  • 1080p display
CONS
  • Middling graphics
  • Keyboard slightly stiff

HP’s Pavilion range of laptops has for long been a popular for budget consumers who don’t need or don’t have the money to buy the upscale Envy and Spectre lines. Take for instance the HP 14-fq1021nr, it doesn’t have an associated brand at all, just a generic family name: “HP 14 Laptop,” but offers a combination of performance and style at affordable prices.

The 14-fq1021nr is every inch a midrange model, with 8GB RAM and 256GB solid-state-drive, but sits at the midst of budget laptops – making it a workable introduction to Windows if you don’t want to consider a Chromebook.

HP 14 Laptop Specs

  • Laptop Class: Budget
  • Processor: AMD Ryzen 5 5500U
  • RAM (as Tested): 8GB DD4
  • Boot Drive Capacity (as Tested): 256GB SSD
  • Screen Size: 14 inches
  • Native Display Resolution: 1920 by 1080
  • Panel Technology: IPS
  • Graphics Processor: AMD Radeon Graphics
  • Dimensions (HWD): 12.76 x 8.86 x 0.71 inches
  • Weight : 3.77 lbs

Design & Build

The HP 14 is a good-looking laptop. The chassis in frosted silver gives it some elegance, despite the mid-range price. It’s one of those laptops that are polished for office use, without the daunting chunkiness you get on some business laptops, such as (though excellent) Dell Inspiron 3505.

If you’re looking for a machine that will double up for personal and professional use, the HP 14 definitely looks the part.

More crucially: it’s portable. While there are lighter laptops out there withing this price range, the HP 14-fq1021nr is very light at 3.77 lbs, against the Acer Aspire 5’s 3.97 lbs. Plus, it’s impressively compact. You can carry it on one hand to class or a conference room for a call. Similarly, you can comfortably balance it on your lap if you’re commuting on a train.

HP 14 Laptop (14-fq1021nr) lid

Like most 14-inch laptops, the HP 14 laptop gets a space-efficient keyboard without a numeric pad – but is available on the larger HP Pavilion 15 laptops. That reduces the overall footprint on your desk (or lap), thanks to a slim profile that keeps the laptop to only 0.7 inches when closed.

Port selection is standard, but sufficient enough to accommodate most (if not all) of your peripherals. Here you get a USB-C port, two USB 3.0 ports, HDMI 1.4b, and a headphone/microphone combo as well an SD card reader. Wireless connectivity comes via Wi-Fi 6 and Bluetooth 5.2.

Screen & Speakers

The HP 14-fq1021nr offers a 14-inch IPS anti-glare Full-HD (1920 x 1080) display. It looks plastic, especially with the dull black bezels, but they aren’t chunky. There’s a 720p webcam at the top, with integrated dual array mics.

The screen offers good image quality, and you benefit from the wide viewing angles typical of IPS displays. It has a maximum brightness of 238 nits (though HP claims 250nits on the box). This isn’t bad, per se. Most cheap laptops only go upto 200 nits, as a cost cutting narrative, and you only end up getting poor image quality.

HP 14 Laptop (14-fq1021nr) screen

Still, the HP 14 laptop isn’t dull, but you’ll need more should you want to work outside. Inside or working in the evening and you won’t have any issues. The laptop’s front-facing dual speakers are refreshingly clear and crisp, but they don’t match HP’s laptops equipped with B&O speakers.

Specs & Performance

With the HP 15 laptop, the company promises smooth day-to-day performance, something that makes this machine, once again a solid option for professionals working from home or an affordable alternative laptop for hotdesking.

Our review unit, the HP 14-fq1021nr rocks a 2.1GHz AMD Ryzen 5 5500U CPU (6 core, 12 threads), 8GB of memory (on one slot), 256GB SSD and AMD Radeon graphics. As specced, this is a silent workhorse that won’t overheat, no matter what you throw at it.

HP 14 Laptop (14-fq1021nr) keyboard

As a work laptop, the HP 14 will suffice for tasks in the realm of word processing, creating spreadsheets, email and web browsing while listening to Spotify in the background – and it will not have any qualms. You can also do some photo-editing on GIMP, as it allows for some basic modifications like layering images, cropping and filling backgrounds.

On the flipside, the AMD Radeon graphics card isn’t cut for modern AAA games, but you can still play basic games, but anything that requires a dedicated graphics card will be painfully slow. For around the same price, you can check out the Lenovo Ideapad Gaming 3 that features a dedicated Nvidia GeForce GTX 1650 graphics card for casual gamers.

Battery Life

HP promises up to 9 hours battery life on the 14-fq1021nr, but the much you’re getting in real-world use would be around 7 hours 48 minutes – which includes continuous video playback and web surfing at 150-nits brightness. Not bad, but we’ve seen budget laptops last longer than that, including the Acer Aspire 5 A515-46-R14K that costs hundreds of dollars less, but maxes out at 10 hours on a single charge.

Overall – Should you buy the HP 14-fq1021nr?

The HP 14 laptop is a solid, affordable laptop for home or office that can definitely most day-to-day tasks – whether it’s video calls, web browsing, college papers, music streaming, or light photo editing. Its only drawback is the display that may be a bit too dim for some, but when used away from the sun it’s as bright as they come. In fact, it’s not a drawback as such, just a thing to note before you buy.

Otherwise, the HP 14 laptop is portable and compact, making it a perfect candidate for those hotdesking or partially working from home. Competitors here include its stablemate, the HP 15 Laptop (15-dy2021nr) and the Acer Aspire 5 A515-56-50RS, both pack 11th generation Intel Core i5-1135G7 processors, 8GB RAM and 256GB SSD storage. So, it’s basically a matter of preference, but both are real productivity workhorses.

OUR PICK

Acer Aspire 5 A515-56-50RS, 15.6" Full HD IPS Display, 11th Gen Intel Core i5-1135G7, Intel Iris Xe Graphics, 8GB DDR4, 256GB NVMe SSD, WiFi 6, Fingerprint Reader, Backlit Keyboard

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as of November 26, 2021 2:58 am
HP 14-fq1021nr Review
HP 14-fq1021nr Review
$469.99 $559.99
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