HP Pavilion 14: A powerful Ice Lake multimedia laptop with an annoying drawback
The HP Pavilion 14, specifically the ce3040ng, has the potential to be a great multimedia laptop. However, one thing holds it back, and it is the reason why we cannot recommend it. Firstly, the device is well-built, portable and lightweight, making it ideal for use on-the-go. While HP has not included a Thunderbolt 3 port, the Pavilion 14 is otherwise well-equipped, and its display is pleasingly bright. Likewise, the AUO543D panel reproduces colours vibrantly and accurately.
Moreover, the device comes with an Intel Core i7-1065G7, an NVIDIA GeForce MX250 and 16 GB of DDR4 RAM, albeit single-channel, which is a powerful combination for a compact laptop. The Core i7-1065G7 impressed during benchmarks too, as did the 4 GB GeForce MX250. The device even has a comparatively fast SSD, with HP including a 1 TB Toshiba XG6 KXG60ZNV1T02.
All these plus points make the device's one true flaw even more frustrating. Simply, HP has implemented a dreadful fan curve on the ce3040ng. The fan in our review unit exceeds 40 dB(A) even when the system is idling, which is significantly louder than most modern multimedia laptops. Furthermore, we recorded the fan hitting 47 dB(A) while playing The Witcher 3 and 49 dB(A) during our stress test, making the ce3040ng about as loud as a gaming laptop.
In short, we cannot recommend the ce3040ng until HP sorts out its fan curve. Our review unit runs rather hot too, which is equally concerning.
Please see our HP Pavilion 14-ce3040ng review for our full thoughts on the device.