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HP EliteBook Folio 1020 G1 Ultrabook Review

Nino Ricchizzi, Stefanie Voigt (translated by Liala Stieglitz), 04/17/2015

Little jack of all trades. The manufacturer describes its new EliteBook as a sturdy travel companion. The build and emissions impress us, but compromises have to be made in performance compared with the competition.

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Who isn't looking for the ideal companion in the business sector? HP presents a 12.5-inch business device for 2250 Euros (~$2428) with its EliteBook 1020 G1 and even tops the previously tested HP EliteBook 820 G1. The biggest difference is the QHD screen with touch support, which places our present review sample in the ultrabook category. A new Broadwell processor inside provides the needed computing power. The highlight: The frugal CPU is cooled without a fan. HP still uses an 8 GB working memory that operates in dual-channel mode and a 256 GB SSD.

We checked whether this price is justified and whether the little EliteBook can stand up against business contenders based on some comparison models. We used our powerful configuration of Lenovo's ThinkPad X250 with a price of 1950 Euros (~$2104). It sports an economic Intel Core i7 5600U, 8 GB of working memory (single-channel) and a 360 GB SSD non-volatile storage. We also added Dell's Latitude E7250 to the group of comparison devices. Our Dell review sample has a marginally lower computing performance due to an Intel Core i7-5300U. Dell installs 8 GB of working memory and an SSD storage with a total capacity of 256 GB. In order to not lose touch with the 800 lineup, we will occasionally refer to our previous review of the HP EliteBook 820 G1.

HP EliteBook Folio 1020 G1 (Elitebook Folio 1020 Series)
Graphics adapter
Intel HD Graphics 5300, Core: 900 MHz, Memory: 800 MHz, 10.18.10.4013
Memory
8192 MB 
, dual-channel 1600 MHz LPDDR3
Display
12.5 inch 16:9, 2560 x 1440 pixel, capacitive touchscreen, Sharp SHP142F, IPS, glossy: yes
Mainboard
Intel Broadwell-Y PCH-LP (Premium)
Storage
Samsung PM851 Series MZMTE256HMHP, 256 GB 
, 196 GB free
Soundcard
Intel Broadwell PCH-LP - High Definition Audio Controller
Connections
2 USB 3.0 / 3.1 Gen1, 1 HDMI, 1 Kensington Lock, 1 Docking Station Port, Audio Connections: combo audio, Card Reader: SD, 1 Fingerprint Reader, Sensors: brightness sensor, NFC
Networking
Intel I218-LM Gigabit (10/100/1000MBit), Intel Dual Band Wireless-AC 7265 (a/b/g/h/n/ac), Bluetooth Bluetooth 4.0
Size
height x width x depth (in mm): 15.7 x 310 x 210 ( = 0.62 x 12.2 x 8.27 in)
Battery
36 Wh Lithium-Ion, 4 cells
Operating System
Microsoft Windows 8.1 64 Bit
Camera
Webcam: 720p
Additional features
Speakers: two stereo speakers, Keyboard: chiclet, Keyboard Light: yes, 36 Months Warranty,
Weight
1.245 kg ( = 43.92 oz / 2.74 pounds), Power Supply: 317 g ( = 11.18 oz / 0.7 pounds)
Price
2250 Euro
Note: The manufacturer may use components from different suppliers including display panels, drives or memory sticks with similar specifications.

 

Case

Maintenance options
Maintenance options

HP exemplary fulfills the high demands that we place on a 2250-Euro (~$2428) laptop for the most part. The choice of materials is mainly limited to aluminum parts and is largely used on the underside. A reason for that could be the temperature management strategy since our review sample does not have a fan. Like as seen in most premium business categories, the EliteBook fulfills the MIL-ST 810G1 military standard. The laptop has to withstand a customized test series of shocks, drops, and vibrations. The manufacturer delivers an impeccably built device; all corners are rounded accurately. The laptop can easily be opened with one finger. The resulting resistance is pleasantly low although the hinge has a firm hold on the display. The display even stops rocking quickly after shakes. Overall, we are happy with the EliteBook's feel because of the sleek curves and contours we find on the display's back. HP's laptop is not only a perfect companion due to its size of 12.5-inches, but also its height of 1.57 cm in conjunction with a weight of 1245 grams make it easy to stow in most bags and suitcases. There are no separate maintenance covers on the underside, and the battery cannot be removed.

A business partner for mobile use
A business partner for mobile use
A recess facilitates opening the display
The SSD non-volatile storage in M.2 format
A fingerprint reader is included
A hole on the underside gives a peek on the other side
In review: HP EliteBook Folio 1020
Plain and elegant
No problems with the gaps
A small recess for opening the display
Only high-quality materials are used
Easy maintenance after removing some screws
The EliteBook features a fan-less design
The hinges are solid
No manufacturing flaws
The logo of the lineup adorns the upper edge

Connectivity

HP's interface positioning strategy appealed to us. All important connections are in the rear area on the right and left sides. It is also superb that HP has left enough room between the neighboring HDMI and expansion ports for connecting even larger peripherals. Although the interface diversity is meager, HP includes an adapter for VGA-out and Ethernet port free of charge on top.

Rear
Rear
Front
Front
Left: Kensington lock, HDMI-out, 1x USB 3.0, micro-SD card reader
Left: Kensington lock, HDMI-out, 1x USB 3.0, micro-SD card reader
Right: combo audio, 1x USB 3.0, docking port
Right: combo audio, 1x USB 3.0, docking port

Communication

The included Ethernet adapter has to be used for cabled network connections. Intel's dual-band Wireless-AC 7265 module makes wireless communication possible. The real-life data transmission rates are ascertained in the author's personal test setup. An iMac Retina (2014) with a Broadcom 802.11 ac module is used for comparing the results. The devices are placed roughly 50 cm apart, and the Speedport-W 724V router is one story below both devices. That equals a straight distance of approximately 3 - 4 meters. HP's review sample settled to 14 MB/s and the iMac to 36 MB/s after a series of 5 GB test files. We have to note that the review sample started the test with over 30 MB/s, but it dropped to approx. 14 MB/s after a few seconds. The EliteBook accomplished a data rate of 54 - 60 MB/s when moving the test to the same story. A laptop-to-laptop connection via Gigabit Ethernet cord resulted in a transmission speed of 115 MB/s both ways.

Security 

A certain standard of security features belongs to the necessary basic configuration particularly in the business sector, and the EliteBook can offer that. In addition to a Trusted Platform Module (TPM), a fingerprint reader is installed in our review sample. Furthermore, the manufacturer lists a complete volume encryption and pre-boot authentication in its product description. A Kensington lock provides physical security. The corresponding cable lock, a SmartCard reader and a protective screen filter are offered on HP's accessories page.

More details about the single security features can be found in our dedicated article.

Accessories

The review sample is shipped with some brochures and an adapter that adds a VGA-out and Ethernet port.

Device-specific and universal accessories for our review sample can be found on the manufacturer's website. They include wireless display extensions (135 Euros, ~$145), USB adapters for HDMI and DVI ports (75 - 100 Euros, ~$80 - ~$107), service packages, storage expansions, anti-theft solutions, etc. The docking stations, ranging from 160 to 280 Euros (~$172 to ~$302), are especially interesting. They can add two USB 3.0 ports, four USB 2.0 ports, an HDMI-out, a display port, a Gigabit Ethernet port, and headphone-out and microphone-in. The dock also has several power plugs for HP laptops.

Maintenance

There are no maintenance covers on the EliteBook's underside, and thus the entire base unit has to be removed. The used Torx screws make that even more difficult for the end user. Should the savvy user have a corresponding screwdriver at hand, it is easy to take off the base plate after removing 11 screws. Nothing stands in the way of potential maintenance after their removal. Details can be found in the instruction guide.

Warranty

The buyer will likely be pleased about a 3-year warranty in view of a price of 2250 Euros (~$2428). A number of additional packages can also be purchased on the manufacturer's page. They range from a basic warranty upgrade for 240 Euros (~$259, including on-site support from a technician/call center/remote assistance) up to the known "whatever happens" insurance (4 years: 650 Euros, ~$701, including on-site service during journeys, accidental damage, retention of defect media).

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Input Devices

Keyboard

Although HP's EliteBook is small with 12.5-inches, the user will not have to waive a comfortable keyboard. Fast typing without delays is possible owing to firm keys and a soft drop with a crisp feedback. A two-level keyboard backlight is also installed making it possible to work accurately in darker rooms. Touch-typists will soon be familiar with the keyboard.

Touchpad

Mouse navigation is performed on an approx. 9.4 x 5.6 cm touchpad. The otherwise solid input device only shows response weaknesses at the edges and in the corners. Scrolling and other gestures are detected without major problems. Our review sample was shipped with a very sleek glass surface that could have had a bit more grip. HP's so-called ForcePad's biggest highlight is its pressure sensitive surface. A light tap is enough to trigger a command - there is no physical click (or that is to say only with very strong pressure). Overall, the finger input device is suitable for even working longer with the laptop.

Touchscreen

Our inputs were always identified rapidly and without problems. We did not ascertain any restrictions even close to the screen's edges. The capacitive screen functions impeccably and its use is convincing.

Successful input devices
Successful input devices

Display

QHD are the magic letters in terms of screen. HP relies on a high-quality IPS display with a resolution of 2560x1440 pixels. As mentioned above, the glare screen can also be used as an input device for the 12.5-inch ultrabook. The contenders do not feature quite such a high resolution and all uncompromisingly use Full HD. However, the contenders have some advantages. Lenovo's ThinkPad has a matte surface, and Dell's Latitude convinces with Gorilla Glass and an anti-fingerprint coating. We ascertained an average brightness of 297.2 cd/m² in our EliteBook. Although HP's laptop is not at all a dark candidate with this brightness, it is in last place in our comparison round. Lenovo's ultrabook impresses with an average of 358 cd/m². We did not observe a PWM flickering even in lower brightness settings.

HP EliteBook Folio 1020 G1
HD Graphics 5300, 5Y51, Samsung PM851 Series MZMTE256HMHP
Lenovo ThinkPad X250-20CLS06D00
HD Graphics 5500, 5600U, Intel SSD Pro 2500 Series SSDSC2BF360A5L
Dell Latitude 12 E7250
HD Graphics 5500, 5300U, Samsung PM851 Series MZMTE256HMHP
HP EliteBook 820 G1
HD Graphics 4400, 4600U, Intel SSD Pro 1500 Series SSDSC2BF180A4H
Screen
-8%
-27%
-98%
Brightness middle
306
397
30%
360
18%
229
-25%
Brightness
297
357
20%
330
11%
211
-29%
Brightness Distribution
80
81
1%
81
1%
86
8%
Black Level *
0.3141
0.44
-40%
0.53
-69%
0.63
-101%
Contrast
974
902
-7%
679
-30%
363
-63%
Colorchecker DeltaE2000 *
3.01
4.2
-40%
5.58
-85%
10.75
-257%
Greyscale DeltaE2000 *
3.13
3.1
1%
3.98
-27%
11.72
-274%
Gamma
2.33 94%
2.6 85%
2.21 100%
2.62 84%
CCT
6484 100%
6246 104%
6192 105%
15283 43%
Color Space (Percent of AdobeRGB 1998)
62
42
-32%
42.2
-32%
37
-40%
Color Space (Percent of sRGB)
65.5

* ... smaller is better

302
cd/m²
331
cd/m²
302
cd/m²
291
cd/m²
306
cd/m²
300
cd/m²
266
cd/m²
280
cd/m²
297
cd/m²
Distribution of brightness
X-Rite i1Pro 2
Maximum: 331 cd/m² Average: 297.2 cd/m²
Brightness Distribution: 80 %
Center on Battery: 307 cd/m²
Contrast: 974:1 (Black: 0.3141 cd/m²)
ΔE Color 3.01 | 0.4-29.43 Ø6.2
ΔE Greyscale 3.13 | 0.64-98 Ø6.4
62% AdobeRGB 1998 (Argyll 3D)
Gamma: 2.33

We ascertained a contrast of 974:1 in our review sample. The screen also largely stands out with rich black hues subjectively. A color temperature of 7203 K is achieved in the screen's middle. An ideal rate would be around 6500 K. A look at the color-space coverage reveals that HP's EliteBook 1020 is not made for professional graphic design. The AdobeRGB space is covered by 62% and the sRGB space by 82.6%. These rates are quite decent and on par with a current Apple MacBook Retina 13. The color and grayscale level analysis disclose a DeltaE shift of 3. That clearly dropped even further after calibration. Overall, the screen in the EliteBook is superior to most contenders. A particularly annoying drawback is, however, the slightly blurred image, which is presumably due to the touchscreen layer.

CalMAN: Grayscale pre-calibration
CalMAN: Grayscale pre-calibration
CalMAN: ColorChecker pre-calibration
CalMAN: ColorChecker pre-calibration
CalMAN: Saturation Sweeps pre-calibration
CalMAN: Saturation Sweeps pre-calibration
sRGB space
sRGB space
CalMAN: ColorChecker post-calibration
CalMAN: ColorChecker post-calibration
CalMAN: Grayscale post-calibration
CalMAN: Grayscale post-calibration
CalMAN: Saturation Sweeps post-calibration
CalMAN: Saturation Sweeps post-calibration
AdobeRGB space
AdobeRGB space

The installed glare-type screen prevents using the laptop in direct light. However, its brightness of almost 300 cd/m² is enough for working with the device in the shade or under clouds outdoors without major restrictions.

Only use in the shade...
Only use in the shade...
...or cloudy conditions...
...or cloudy conditions...
...is recommendable.
...is recommendable.

Thanks to the underlying IPS technology, it is possible to use the laptop in virtually every thinkable position. Only the tight opening angles of approximately 125° could be wider for longer use on the lap during train or car trips. We would mention Dell's Latitude E7250 as an example, which can be opened up to 180°.

Viewing-angle stability
Viewing-angle stability

Performance

DPC Latency Checker
DPC Latency Checker

The quick-responding components in the present 12.5-inch ultrabook from HP are to prove its suitability for the office and multimedia sectors. The 256 GB SSD storage and 8 GB working memory that operates in dual-channel mode speak for that. A special focus is placed on the QHD screen that is also an input option. A new and economic Broadwell CPU clocks inside to provide the system with the required computing power. These prerequisites turn the 12.5-inch EliteBook into an always prepared workhorse.

System information: HP EliteBook Folio 1020 G1

Processor

A significant innovation is the CPU installed in our review sample. HP has opted for Intel's Core M 5Y51 from the new Broadwell architecture. A base clock of 1.1 GHz and a Turbo mode speed of 2600 MHz have to compete against potent rivals. We find Intel's Core i7-5600U with a clock range of 2.6 - 3.2 GHz in Lenovo's ThinkPad. The wide clock range of the EliteBook should be particularly suitable for the office and multimedia sectors. Some more demanding applications are nevertheless feasible. Intel specifies a TDP of just 4.5 watts. The power dissipation of the contenders is 10.5 watts higher - at least when we believe Intel's optimistic specifications. We would like to examine to what extent the different CPU models vary in the Cinebench benchmarks. For this purpose, we look at the multi-core test of Cinebench version R15. The contenders achieve two-times higher scores than our review sample right away. This does not change in the single-core test, either. The EliteBook's clock rate ranged from 1.4 to 1.5 GHz during the tests.

An advantage of HP's ultrabook is that it does not matter whether it is used in AC or battery modes. The same score is reached in both cases, according to Cinebench R15.

More details and benchmarks can be found in our corresponding FAQ section.

Cinebench R15
CPU Single 64Bit (sort by value)
HP EliteBook Folio 1020 G1
84 Points ∼39%
Dell Latitude 12 E7250
114 Points ∼52% +36%
Lenovo ThinkPad X250-20CLS06D00
130 Points ∼60% +55%
HP EliteBook 820 G1
125 Points ∼57% +49%
CPU Multi 64Bit (sort by value)
HP EliteBook Folio 1020 G1
152 Points ∼3%
Dell Latitude 12 E7250
264 Points ∼6% +74%
Lenovo ThinkPad X250-20CLS06D00
301 Points ∼7% +98%
HP EliteBook 820 G1
261 Points ∼6% +72%
Cinebench R11.5
CPU Single 64Bit (sort by value)
HP EliteBook Folio 1020 G1
0.96 Points ∼39%
Dell Latitude 12 E7250
1.33 Points ∼55% +39%
Lenovo ThinkPad X250-20CLS06D00
1.51 Points ∼62% +57%
HP EliteBook 820 G1
1.43 Points ∼59% +49%
CPU Multi 64Bit (sort by value)
HP EliteBook Folio 1020 G1
1.65 Points ∼6%
Dell Latitude 12 E7250
2.94 Points ∼11% +78%
Lenovo ThinkPad X250-20CLS06D00
3.29 Points ∼12% +99%
HP EliteBook 820 G1
2.83 Points ∼10% +72%

Legend

 
HP EliteBook Folio 1020 G1 Intel Core M-5Y51, Intel HD Graphics 5300, Samsung PM851 Series MZMTE256HMHP
 
Dell Latitude 12 E7250 Intel Core i5-5300U, Intel HD Graphics 5500, Samsung PM851 Series MZMTE256HMHP
 
Lenovo ThinkPad X250-20CLS06D00 Intel Core i7-5600U, Intel HD Graphics 5500, Intel SSD Pro 2500 Series SSDSC2BF360A5L
 
HP EliteBook 820 G1 Intel Core i7-4600U, Intel HD Graphics 4400, Intel SSD Pro 1500 Series SSDSC2BF180A4H
Cinebench R10 Shading 64Bit
4130 Points
Cinebench R10 Rendering Multiple CPUs 64Bit
6686 Points
Cinebench R10 Rendering Single CPUs 64Bit
4187 Points
Cinebench R10 Shading 32Bit
4018
Cinebench R10 Rendering Multiple CPUs 32Bit
5291
Cinebench R10 Rendering Single 32Bit
3190
Cinebench R11.5 OpenGL 64Bit
15.7 fps
Cinebench R11.5 CPU Multi 64Bit
1.65 Points
Cinebench R11.5 CPU Single 64Bit
0.96 Points
Cinebench R15 Ref. Match 64Bit
98 %
Cinebench R15 OpenGL 64Bit
17.65 fps
Cinebench R15 CPU Multi 64Bit
152 Points
Cinebench R15 CPU Single 64Bit
84 Points
Help

System Performance

CPU clock rates PCMark 8 Home
CPU clock rates PCMark 8 Home

Working with HP's new ultrabook is fun. All applications opened quickly, and use was always smooth. The device only occasionally stuttered when multiple applications, Internet activity and a HD video ran for a longer time. The PCMark 7 and PCMark 8 benchmarks scores confirm this subjective impression. All contenders have a higher performance owing to their stronger processors. A problem that evolved after some time was that the CPU operated under its base clock, which is because HP's Folio 1020 does not feature an active fan system.

HP EliteBook Folio 1020 G1
HD Graphics 5300, 5Y51, Samsung PM851 Series MZMTE256HMHP
Dell Latitude 12 E7250
HD Graphics 5500, 5300U, Samsung PM851 Series MZMTE256HMHP
Lenovo ThinkPad X250-20CLS06D00
HD Graphics 5500, 5600U, Intel SSD Pro 2500 Series SSDSC2BF360A5L
HP EliteBook 820 G1
HD Graphics 4400, 4600U, Intel SSD Pro 1500 Series SSDSC2BF180A4H
PCMark 8
21%
37%
49%
Work Score Accelerated v2
3217
4345
35%
5363
67%
Creative Score Accelerated v2
2644
3052
15%
3458
31%
3045
15%
Home Score Accelerated v2
2191
2772
27%
3148
44%
3624
65%
PCMark 7
Score
4045
4662
15%
4609
14%
5196
28%
Total Average (Program / Settings)
18% / 19%
26% / 31%
39% / 44%
PCMark 7 Score
4045 points
PCMark 8 Home Score Accelerated v2
2191 points
PCMark 8 Creative Score Accelerated v2
2644 points
PCMark 8 Work Score Accelerated v2
3217 points
Help

Storage Device

HP wanted to build a noiseless ultrabook. Since the storage solution was to also follow this objective, a 256 GB SSD storage was chosen. It comes from Samsung's PM851 lineup. The manufacturer states a service life of 1.5 million hours without downtime for the M.2 storage device (MTBF).

We use the CrystalDiskMark benchmark program for ascertaining factual write and read rates. The sequential read rates of HP's device particularly convince with speeds close to 520 MB/s. The EliteBook is on par with its contenders in the write rates and important 4k scores.

More details and benchmark results can be found here.

HP EliteBook Folio 1020 G1
HD Graphics 5300, 5Y51, Samsung PM851 Series MZMTE256HMHP
Dell Latitude 12 E7250
HD Graphics 5500, 5300U, Samsung PM851 Series MZMTE256HMHP
Lenovo ThinkPad X250-20CLS06D00
HD Graphics 5500, 5600U, Intel SSD Pro 2500 Series SSDSC2BF360A5L
HP EliteBook 820 G1
HD Graphics 4400, 4600U, Intel SSD Pro 1500 Series SSDSC2BF180A4H
CrystalDiskMark 3.0
-10%
-33%
-5%
Write 4k QD32
234.8
180
-23%
60.2
-74%
198.2
-16%
Read 4k QD32
327.3
214
-35%
163.9
-50%
156.5
-52%
Write 4k
91.16
61
-33%
15.3
-83%
124
36%
Read 4k
28.17
29
3%
27.86
-1%
28.44
1%
Write 512
237.9
244
3%
203.3
-15%
261.7
10%
Read 512
415.6
428
3%
355.2
-15%
352.5
-15%
Write Seq
239.5
244
2%
228.6
-5%
263.8
10%
Read Seq
518.1
509
-2%
419.8
-19%
428.5
-17%
Samsung PM851 Series MZMTE256HMHP
Sequential Read: 518.1 MB/s
Sequential Write: 239.5 MB/s
512K Read: 415.6 MB/s
512K Write: 237.9 MB/s
4K Read: 28.17 MB/s
4K Write: 91.16 MB/s
4K QD32 Read: 327.3 MB/s
4K QD32 Write: 234.8 MB/s

Graphics Card

Like in the contenders, HP's EliteBook Folio has to be content with a processor-integrated graphics card. Intel's HD Graphics 5300 has a core clock of 900 MHz and a memory clock of 800 MHz. Its performance is located between an Intel HD Graphics 4400 and 4000. The iGPU's naming is slightly confusing at first because it is also below an Intel HD Graphics 5000. Dell's Latitude E7250 and Lenovo's ThinkPad X250 use an Intel HD Graphics 5500 owing to their stronger processors. We can observe the exact differences in 3DMark 11. The single graphics cards are extremely far apart. Dell's Latitude and HP's EliteBook 820 G1 achieve over 50% more points than our review sample. Lenovo's ThinkPad reaps in an even better score with 77% more points.

HP's ultrabook operates without losses in battery mode, as already seen in the CPU benchmarks. It also achieved 610 points here.

More comparisons and details can be found in our article about current laptop graphics cards.

3DMark 11 - 1280x720 Performance (sort by value)
HP EliteBook Folio 1020 G1
615 Points ∼2%
Dell Latitude 12 E7250
927 Points ∼3% +51%
Lenovo ThinkPad X250-20CLS06D00
1079 Points ∼3% +75%
HP EliteBook 820 G1
937 Points ∼3% +52%

Legend

 
HP EliteBook Folio 1020 G1 Intel Core M-5Y51, Intel HD Graphics 5300, Samsung PM851 Series MZMTE256HMHP
 
Dell Latitude 12 E7250 Intel Core i5-5300U, Intel HD Graphics 5500, Samsung PM851 Series MZMTE256HMHP
 
Lenovo ThinkPad X250-20CLS06D00 Intel Core i7-5600U, Intel HD Graphics 5500, Intel SSD Pro 2500 Series SSDSC2BF360A5L
 
HP EliteBook 820 G1 Intel Core i7-4600U, Intel HD Graphics 4400, Intel SSD Pro 1500 Series SSDSC2BF180A4H
3DMark 11 Performance
615 points
3DMark Ice Storm Standard Score
25301 points
3DMark Cloud Gate Standard Score
2814 points
Help

Gaming Performance

The combination of an extremely frugal CPU and processor-integrated graphics unit largely prevents enjoying games. Only rarely will newer games be rendered smoothly using low settings. Games like Alien Isolation or Middle-earth: Shadow of Mordor cannot be played lag-free even in minimum quality settings. A FIFA night will also flop due to a maximum of 19.11 fps. The EliteBook's target group might not be gamers, but particularly old classics will be rendered smoothly on the ultrabook.

Middle-earth: Shadow of Mordor - 1280x720 Lowest Preset (sort by value)
HP EliteBook Folio 1020 G1
12.31 fps ∼5%
Dell Latitude 12 E7250
16.2 fps ∼6% +32%

Legend

 
HP EliteBook Folio 1020 G1 Intel Core M-5Y51, Intel HD Graphics 5300, Samsung PM851 Series MZMTE256HMHP
 
Dell Latitude 12 E7250 Intel Core i5-5300U, Intel HD Graphics 5500, Samsung PM851 Series MZMTE256HMHP
low med. high ultra
Fifa 15 (2014) 19.116.2fps
Middle-earth: Shadow of Mordor (2014) 12.317.924.33fps
Alien: Isolation (2014) 17.7511.576.634.63fps

Emissions

System Noise

The review sample is absolutely noiseless thanks to the fan-less cooling strategy.

Noise Level

Idle
/ / dB(A)
Load
/ dB(A)
  red to green bar
 
 
30 dB
silent
40 dB(A)
audible
50 dB(A)
loud
 
min: dark, med: mid, max: light   Voltcraft sl-451 (15 cm distance)

Temperature

Stress test
Stress test

We have special interest in analyzing the temperature development of the fan-less review sample. The surfaces of the plastic and aluminum casing do not heat up much during idle mode. A hot spot of not even 31 °C on the underside is not at all distressing. Although the temperature clearly climbs during load, disconcerting temperatures of over 40 °C are not reached. The keyboard reaches up to 36 °C in the right back area but that does not restrict working with the EliteBook. Using the ultrabook on the lap is also possible without problems. The power supply heats up from 30.4 °C in idle to 37.2 °C during load.

But to what extent does omitting a fan take its toll? To answer this question, we look at the CPU's temperature inside. The ultrabook is faced with a stress scenario via the programs FurMark and Prime95. The processor's clock speed drops from 2.6 GHz to approximately 500 MHz right from the beginning of our test procedure. This does not change after an hour of load, either. The CPU's peak temperature of 55 °C is reached after a while and does not increase further from that instant. We rerun the 3DMark 11 after the test procedure and discover that equal scores as in a cold start are achieved.

 25.9 °C
79 F
26.6 °C
80 F
27.4 °C
81 F
 
 25.8 °C
78 F
26.2 °C
79 F
27.4 °C
81 F
 
 25.9 °C
79 F
25.8 °C
78 F
26.3 °C
79 F
 
Maximum: 27.4 °C = 81 F
Average: 26.4 °C = 80 F
29.6 °C
85 F
30.5 °C
87 F
27.8 °C
82 F
29.1 °C
84 F
28.9 °C
84 F
27.6 °C
82 F
28.3 °C
83 F
28.2 °C
83 F
27.2 °C
81 F
Maximum: 30.5 °C = 87 F
Average: 28.6 °C = 83 F
Power Supply (max.)  30.4 °C = 87 F | Room Temperature 20.9 °C = 70 F | Fluke 62 Max
(±) The average temperature for the upper side under maximal load is 32.1 °C / 90 F, compared to the average of 30.7 °C / 87 F for the devices in the class Subnotebook.
(+) The maximum temperature on the upper side is 37 °C / 99 F, compared to the average of 35.8 °C / 96 F, ranging from 22 to 57 °C for the class Subnotebook.
(+) The bottom heats up to a maximum of 39.6 °C / 103 F, compared to the average of 40.2 °C / 104 F
(+) In idle usage, the average temperature for the upper side is 26.4 °C / 80 F, compared to the device average of 30.7 °C / 87 F.
(+) The palmrests and touchpad are reaching skin temperature as a maximum (32.4 °C / 90.3 F) and are therefore not hot.
(-) The average temperature of the palmrest area of similar devices was 28.6 °C / 83.5 F (-3.8 °C / -6.8 F).

Speakers

We cannot say that HP's EliteBook Folio develops a wide sound spectrum. Too many trebles disrupt music playback. Even the volume is rather middling. However, Skype calls please with a clear voice quality. Music lovers will definitely use external devices. The speakers are barely strong enough to defy louder surroundings.

Energy Management

Power Consumption

Our review sample was not particularly guzzling in idle. The power consumption ranged from 3.4 watts to 7.4 watts here. Lenovo's Ultrabook has a minimum of 2.7 watts but can demand as much as 9 watts in this case. Dell's laptop consumes even more with up to 9.4 watts. A reason might be the screens' higher brightness. Our findings in "Temperature" are reflected in the load power consumption: The ultrabook requires 18.4 watts at the beginning, which then decreases to 14.3 watts. A look at the rivals shows considerably higher power consumption. Both Dell's and Lenovo's laptops clearly surpass 40 watts. The power supply's maximum of 45 watts is most definitely sufficient for the HP review sample.

HP EliteBook Folio 1020 G1
HD Graphics 5300, 5Y51, Samsung PM851 Series MZMTE256HMHP
Dell Latitude 12 E7250
HD Graphics 5500, 5300U, Samsung PM851 Series MZMTE256HMHP
Lenovo ThinkPad X250-20CLS06D00
HD Graphics 5500, 5600U, Intel SSD Pro 2500 Series SSDSC2BF360A5L
HP EliteBook 820 G1
HD Graphics 4400, 4600U, Intel SSD Pro 1500 Series SSDSC2BF180A4H
Power Consumption
-61%
-45%
-31%
Idle Minimum *
3.4
4.1
-21%
2.7
21%
3.2
6%
Idle Average *
6.7
8.3
-24%
7
-4%
5.2
22%
Idle Maximum *
7.5
9.4
-25%
8
-7%
7.5
-0%
Load Average *
14.6
31.6
-116%
28.6
-96%
34.3
-135%
Load Maximum *
18.4
40.4
-120%
44.3
-141%
26.8
-46%

* ... smaller is better

Power Consumption
Off / Standbydarklight 0 / 0.1 Watt
Idledarkmidlight 3.4 / 6.7 / 7.5 Watt
Load midlight 14.6 / 18.4 Watt
 color bar
Key: min: dark, med: mid, max: light        Extech Power Analyzer 380803

Battery Runtime

HP installs a 4-cell battery with a capacity of 36 Wh in its 12.5-inch ultrabook.

We will first look at the maximum possible battery runtime. We set the screen's brightness to minimum, disabled the communication modules, and selected the energy-saving mode for this. Battery Eater's Reader's test simulates reading texts. Our review sample shut down after exactly 11 hours. Although the EliteBook sports more energy-efficient hardware than its contenders, the comparison devices all shut down considerably later.

We simulate a real-life scenario via our Wi-Fi test. We reproduce browsing on the Internet using a screen brightness of 150 cd/m². Unfortunately, HP's ultrabook shut down after approximately 7 hours and will thus not manage a whole workday. A direct comparison with all contenders is not possible due to varying test conditions. The ThinkPad shut down two hours sooner, though. Just a reminder: Lenovo's ThinkPad is the strongest ultrabook in the test.

We initiated Battery Eater's Classic test to ascertain the minimum possible battery runtime. The review sample went black after approximately 2.5 hours using Window's high-performance profile and maximum brightness. The selected rivals only achieve an average of 1.5 - 2 hours.

HP EliteBook Folio 1020 G1
HD Graphics 5300, 5Y51, Samsung PM851 Series MZMTE256HMHP
Dell Latitude 12 E7250
HD Graphics 5500, 5300U, Samsung PM851 Series MZMTE256HMHP
Lenovo ThinkPad X250-20CLS06D00
HD Graphics 5500, 5600U, Intel SSD Pro 2500 Series SSDSC2BF360A5L
HP EliteBook 820 G1
HD Graphics 4400, 4600U, Intel SSD Pro 1500 Series SSDSC2BF180A4H
Battery Runtime
WiFi Websurfing 1.3
412
298
-28%
Battery Runtime
-5%
-13%
-1%
Reader / Idle
660
845
28%
779
18%
813
23%
Load
164
103
-37%
92
-44%
124
-24%
Total Average (Program / Settings)
-5% / -5%
-21% / -18%
-1% / -1%
Battery Runtime
Idle (without WLAN, min brightness)
11h 00min
NBC WiFi Websurfing Battery Test 1.3
6h 52min
Big Buck Bunny H.264 1080p
5h 51min
Load (maximum brightness)
2h 44min

Pros

+ Casing's build
+ Keyboard
+ High-quality QHD IPS screen
+ Temperature development
+ No noise development
+ Agreeably smooth workflow

Cons

- Performance compared with contenders
- Price/performance
- Touchpad slightly inaccurate
- Speakers

Verdict

HP EliteBook Folio 1020
HP EliteBook Folio 1020

HP's EliteBook Folio 1020 certainly asserted itself as an office for on-the-move. We barely found any room for complaint - particularly in build. The aluminum casing convinces, and the screen that is behind a single glass pane makes a high-quality impression. We find a minimum standard in connectivity. However, HP offers a small adapter free of charge. Diverse maintenance options are made possible via the base plate simply secured with screws, which are easily removed with the right screwdriver. Unfortunately, the battery can no longer simply be taken out. There is no need to clean the fan because the EliteBook Folio 1020 features a fan-less design. We deem the input devices as an especially crucial purchase criterion for the business sector. The keyboard with its ideal drop is particularly compelling. However, high-quality materials and well-considered strategies were not only used for the casing, but also for the screen: The manufacturer not only treats us to a touchscreen, but also a QHD display. We ascertained a high standard in terms of brightness and contrast ratio. Furthermore, the glare IPS screen convinces with its viewing-angle stability. Unfortunately, HP does not offer a matte screen that would be the better choice especially in mobile use. Since the slim 12.5-inch ultrabook does not have a fan, compromises have to be made in performance. The selected Broadwell CPU cannot compete with the contenders. Nevertheless, system programs and working with the device are quite fast.

Overall, HP's EliteBook Folio 1020 is a small well-conceived and high-quality companion. However, it is beyond question that the contenders mostly score better in terms of screen and performance. It is up to the buyer to decide whether a price of 2250 Euros (~$2428) is justified.

HP EliteBook Folio 1020 G1 - 04/13/2015 v4(old)
Nino Ricchizzi

Chassis
92 /  98 → 94%
Keyboard
85%
Pointing Device
80%
Connectivity
69 / 80 → 86%
Weight
72 / 35-78 → 86%
Battery
89%
Display
84%
Games Performance
54 / 68 → 79%
Application Performance
64 / 87 → 74%
Temperature
91 / 91 → 100%
Noise
100%
Audio
40 / 91 → 44%
Camera
58 / 85 → 68%
Average
75%
84%
Subnotebook - Weighted Average

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> Notebook / Laptop Reviews and News > Reviews > Archive of our own reviews > HP EliteBook Folio 1020 G1 Ultrabook Review
Nino Ricchizzi, 2015-04-17 (Update: 2018-05-15)