The Leader of the Pack? Hands-On Video of the HP 2133 Mini-Note

hp2133_g3.jpgIn the words of Nelly, “It’s getting hot in here!” In the low-cost laptop market that is. We can now welcome HP, the number-one PC manufacturer, to the sub-$500 notebook club. Today the company released its long-rumored low-cost laptop—the Mini-Note. The HP 2133 Mini-Note is a full-function mini-notebook, starting at less than $500, and according to HP is designed for the education market. However, its different models have us thinking twice about this system being strictly for the kiddies. For instance, our $749 review unit, which is at the top of the Mini-Note line, was souped up with a 1.6-GHz Via processor, 2GB of RAM, a 7,200-rpm 120GB hard drive, a six-cell battery, Bluetooth, and Microsoft Vista Professional. Sounds far from budget, right? However, HP is offering four different SKUs including ones with a SuSE Linux OS. See the chart below:


hp2133_g10.jpg We have had our hands on the $749 version for a few weeks now. Compared with the Asus Eee PC, Everex CloudBook or the CTL 2go PC, we have to say that the Mini-Note’s design is best. Its bushed silver and aluminum chassis looks far from budget, and underneath the hood lies a full-size, spill- and wear-resistant keyboard. Even the 8.9-inch display, with a praise-the-Lord 1280 x 768-pixel resolution, features a glossy coating similar to premium HP screens. However, the Mini-Note has a small touchpad flanked by vertically oriented touch buttons, which is awkward. To our surprise, our little system ran Microsoft Vista without a hiccup. Read up on the performance of the system in our full HP Mini-Note review . In general we were impressed with the little system’s punch. We are looking forward to testing out the lower-cost Linux version soon. Check out the video below and then let us know if you would chose the Mini-Note over the new Eee PC 4G XP or another low-cost lappie. Check out our hands-on video of the Mini-Note: [flq:af8ef8854cdc4c37b205786305568b0d]

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  1. Ray Says:

    If I had the money, I would have already ordered it… great video review by the way!

  2. puglyfeet Says:

    I want one reeeeeeaaaaaaaaaaaally bad.

  3. DaMan Says:

    $500 is a bit more expensive than the recently announced Jisus;

    This is a also a very small Laptop with a 8.9″ screen.

    It will cost about 300 Euros, when you convert it to USD it will be $470, but usually it will be a lot cheaper in the US, because many times the prices are one on one.

  4. mark Says:

    i don’t want any version of vista on this thing.
    can you get the upper model with no vista (yuck)

    windows xp or do a touch screen mode and put win xp Tablet edition on it.
    that would be perfect.

  5. Ken Says:

    Has anyone tested the battery life with a SSD on the lower end model?

  6. Sandoval Ed Jew Says:

    I was researching the same thing when I saw this.. I can not agree more – but I am still going to look for a better source

  7. Jeff Says:

    I disagree re: 7200RPM drive. It is exactly what is needed for those of us who are hoping to replace our 4 year-old desktop PC with a mobile/dockable solution finally (that isn’t 12.1″ and $2300!).

  8. haddiman1 Says:


    Are you retarded? This model outdoes every competing model. If you want a tablet, buy a tablet. Enough said.

  9. Kev50027 Says:

    You guys should spend the money you saved on the laptop and get a better video service and a tripod. Seriously, that video is almost unwatchable.

  10. Gabriel Says:

    It should be a budget notebook that price tag at $749 is a bit too high. The success of eeePC rely on its super low price but still keep its mobility with long battery life. I don’t need a desktop replacement while on the road.

  11. Charbax Says:

    I’d rather have a commercial version of the OLPC XO laptop. Costs 3-4 times less then this HP laptop, costs 2-3 times less then the Asus Eee, has 5 times longer battery life, a better sunlight readable e-book reading capable higher resolution per square inch screen, better WiFi with meshing capabillity for instant collaboration and better WiFi range.

    HP should take the OLPC XO, put their brand on it and sell it commercially, they wouldn’t even need to customize the XO, it’s open for any company to take the design, re-brand it as they want and distribute it commercially.

  12. bob e Says:

    I’ll be buying the Vista Business edition as soon as I can – awesome!

  13. funkyboss Says:

    This looks great, I’m loving that keyboard. But why have any moving parts by opting for the hard disk drive? The SSD will make the laptop a bit lighter, run cooler/quieter and should speed up the boot time. You can increase your storage capacity by tossing in a 16 or 32GB SD flash card. Although my current laptop runs Ubuntu with Compiz fine on 512MB, you could always put in some extra ram.

    I have read that the new Asus Eee 900 will have a 12 or possibly a 20GB SSD disk and will have more ram. it also is supposed to have 1.3mp webcam. I’m curious to see how many megapixels are on the 2133. I asked HP and the CSR was unsure.

    If the 2133 and the eee900 are both $499, the HP keyboard might be the deciding factor for me. Either way, it is nice to see HP join Dell and a few others in offering Linux laptop models for those of us who don’t use Windows.

  14. DiBosco Says:

    It looks reasonable, but it’s definitely not something that’s making me say “I want one”. Battery life it’s not fantastic at all with standard cell and it seems pretty expensive. I’d hate to run Vista on a processor like this (I’d hate to run it anyway, but doubly so as it’s awful).

    Sad to see no Linux on the higher parts; uneducated people will start to think Linux is just for low end PCs.

    All in all, there’ll be better devices out there.

  15. user Says:

    Nice design overall, but why on earth that glossy display? If I want a mirror I can get better and cheaper models elsewhere. The laptop display is there for me to see things on the computer not to see myself.

  16. Luscious Says:

    This unit reminds me of the Fujitsu P1120 I used to own back in 2003 – same 8.9″ screen, 2.5″ HDD, Windows XP, non-Intel CPU, same keyboard layout, battery, PC card slot… The resemblance is remarkable. It’s as if HP took the P1120 shell, redesigned it and stuffed it with 2008 hardware.

    For $499, this kicks Asus EEE butt. The $749 top-spec version will make $1799 MacBook Air owners go into rehab.

  17. jesse Says:

    I’d be pulling Suse off it and replacing it with Debian but the option to not have to pay for some M$ pos that I don’t want is a great plus. I wouldn’t have to replace the hdd and shelve the original one so I can pretend I was using Vista in case of warrantee claims like my friend had to with his Pressario. I wonder how much money is in my piggy bank :)

  18. TomWitt Says:

    Nice machine.

    I’d love to see the high-end version offered with Linux. I’d pick that up in a heart beat.

  19. survival Says:

    Great machine – I think I’d go for the 499 model and pop XP on the sucker. Not a big linux fan. Also, that 7200RPM drive on the 120GB model is indeed overkill. I wonder if there’s a slot for upgrading the ram on the bottom – too bad the interviewer didn’t flip the thing over!

    Nice article guys,

  20. Orlando Says:

    He flipped it over and at the bottom sits -awkwardly- this rather huge battery. On the eee the battery is more nicely fitted into the arrangement. Minus for the hp here. Screen, and more important the keyboard are a plus for hp, especially the latter, one cant think of a better keyboard in such a small form factor….and vista, dont know why they use this , i d like to see a good xp that saves some battery life – but i d rather opt for linux anyway, with usually all the software one needs pre-installed (and even more resource friendly).

  21. NYC Says:

    Wow this murders the competition.

  22. William Says:

    What are you people going on about? And what is up with this reviewer? Don’t need that power? What, are you crazy? COURSE YOU DO!! Sure, you’re creating some content. It’s perfect for bloggers. Writers. Creative Types on the road who are yeah, trying in be mobile, which is what it’s all about, or at least what your phone companies tell you it is. So, shut up already!!
    So, in a less endowed model, you can get Linux. I don’t know Linux, but can tell you this: THIS BLOWS! What kind of crap is that? If you’re going to allow a unit to run your choice of OS, why not allow it to go? You know, you can’t run the Linux on the Higher End model. This is bull shit. Yes, bull shit. And I have no use for that except for placing on my lawn in Winter in Los Angeles, after I’ve shaved the hell out of it down to brown/dirt, and then staked and stringed it off, with little tassels of cotton muslin to shew away the birds from eating the grass seed I’ve scattered. To the winds you idiots. To the winds.
    I mean, come on. Let’s get real here. Give us the power. The operating system choices. And, if possible, long life, eh? Well, you can’t have long life if you’ve got stuff chewing it up…and all the memory and drive is going to kill batteries….that’s all there is to it. TOUGH.
    But, please, this is a real neat unit. And, until VERIZON allows Nokia S60 type phones, and all, I’m going to seriously forget about the N810 and think really hard about this beauty of a travelling device that will allow connectivity…SKYPE any one? Hook that up…stay connected. Blog….go places…ubiquity here we come. Come on already, stop the nonsense, make it happen, NOW!!!

  23. DaMan Says:

    I guess it gets strong competition this month, because the Eee PC 900 will be released.

  24. Judith Says:

    Seriously sweet. Ordered one directly from HP and a custom sleeve to protect it: . Hummm, baby.

  25. Jon Says:

    Does anyone know if you get the 6-cell battery – does it stick out the back? Or, is it still self-contained like the 3-cell battery?

  26. Peerless Says:

    “You know, you can’t run the Linux on the Higher End model.”

    What makes you think that?

  27. batteries Says:

    Great machine – I think I’d go for the 499 model and pop XP on the sucker. Not a big linux fan. Also, that 7200RPM drive on the 120GB model is indeed overkill. I wonder if there’s a slot for upgrading the ram on the bottom – too bad the interviewer didn’t flip the thing over!

  28. battery Says:

    He flipped it over and at the bottom sits -awkwardly- this rather huge battery. On the eee the battery is more nicely fitted into the arrangement.

  29. hebredonic Says:

    HP just proved you can put out a low cost laptop that doesn’t look like a toy. Good screen, good keyboard, good storage. The VIA chip is a liability, but I can live with that.

    It isn’t mentioned here, but the keyboard is spillproof, too. Frankly, every laptop should be.

    I’ve already ordered one. Can’t wait for it to show up.

  30. jash Says:

    Here are another HP Laptop Accessories, maybe it’s useful for you:

  31. Garnet Says:

    I love my EEE PC, but will admit I’m happy to switch for a keyboard that’s truly touch-typeable! Waiting until WinXP is available as a purchaseable option as well, which will run much faster & better than Vista.

    Is the memory slot an SDHC or SD slot? Wouldn’t make much sense to be an SD, since most people now using larger capacity SDHC cards.

  32. notebook batteries Says:

    Great machine !

  33. Anonymous Says:

    where can i get one from?

  34. Alex Says:




  35. Dugger Says:

    Certainly a very nice unit, but I believe the price point is missing the point. Yes you get a wonderfully packaged small unit, but the point of these class of machine is to reduce hardware sophistication to bring small and cheap solutions to market.

    For nearly $800, I would feel like a chump to purchase this device. I know I would not get the small footprint, but I see in today’s sales paper a Compaq (owned by HP) with dual-core, 1GB RAM 80GB hard drive, reads and writes dual layer DVDs…etc. for $330. Yes, the screen is 15.4″ but that is my point. Why can’t HP deliver their high-end mini for $330? The technology isn’t exactly state-of-the art.

  36. Bob in Japan Says:

    I’ll second (third? forth?) the complaint about not offering the higher end ones with Linux (or no OS, as I’m bound to replace Nozell Linucks with Debian anyway). I’d seriously consider getting one if I could get their best one without paying the M$ tax. As it is, I suppose I’ll wait until the Atom processors are out and this market segment heats up a little more. . .

  37. Marc Says:

    Does not work with any ubuntu, kubuntu, xubuntu, opensuze or even debian.
    The processor (and I am talking 1.6 Ghz) is extremely slow making it absolutely impossible to work with disk encryption.
    Most irritating problem is the screen resolution that is not picked op by any distribution.

    The battery life is like non existing. Even the extra double sized battery is way too small.

    Its the best looking netbook I use, but the hardware/OS/driver compatibility makes me cry.(Doing R&D I use(d) most of the available netbooks.)

    (No operating system found is the standard message it spits out after doing an OS install.

    Marc PC1MH

    (eeepc no problems yet.)

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