Saturday, 16 April 2016 15:27

HP ZBooks – rock solid, notebook sized, workstations

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HP must have left the best for last when naming its latest bullet-proof, heavy duty, workstation, notebooks. Meet the ZBook.

Zbooks have gained a considerable following over the years for their flexibility, upgradeability, and rugged design – that DNA has not changed with the release of the ZBook Ultrabook, Studio, 15 and 15u, and 17 G3.

iTWire was invited to inspect the range and had a hands on with all the models (of workbooks that is), and they are refinements on an otherwise specific purpose product.

 

Let’s look at some of the options across the range.

  • Processors include Xeon E3 or sixth generation Core i5/i7
  • Graphics include Intel HR, Iris Pro, AMD FirePro, or NVIDIA Quadro
  • Optional HD touch screen up to 4K UHD displays
  • RAM up to 64GB (four slot models) and 32GB (two slot models) and ECC on some
  • Storage options including SSD SATA, HDD 5400/7200 RPM, and PCIe NVMe SSD
  • Thunderbolt 3 (Supporting DisplayPort 1.2, USB 3.1 Gen2, PCIe Gen 3 device. A ZBook dock supports multiple displays.
  • A range of Wi-Fi AC, 2 x 2, dual band and Bluetooth 4.2 as well as LTE mobile
  • Windows 7 Pro to Windows 10 Home or Pro, and FreeDOS 2.0

This is the ‘new’ HP free from its enterprise solutions arm HPE. While there are some legacy design cues it has sharpened prices, and introduced new technology faster than in the past. It has also put design back into what had been best described as “Sherman Tanks.’

It has kept the ZBook DNA - ISV certification, MIL-STD 810G testing, and 120K hours of testing in HP's Total Test Process.

It also has enterprise-grade security solution, enabling robust remote configurability and manageability, automatic data protection, and HP Sure Start to prevent BIOS attack or corruption. HP Performance Advisor7 optimizes Zbooks for peak performance.

ZBooks are aimed at graphic intensive users and those that want the power of an Intel Xeon and ECC RAM. They have found a home in digital film studios, CAD and engineering and applications were consumer notebooks don’t cut it. They can be married with a range of Z Workstations, and Z Displays including 31.5” DreamColour, 34”,21:9. 3440 x 1440 curved, 4K and 5K and digitiser equipped.

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Ray Shaw

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Ray Shaw ray@im.com.au  has a passion for IT ever since building his first computer in 1980. He is a qualified journalist, hosted a consumer IT based radio program on ABC radio for 10 years, has developed world leading software for the events industry and is smart enough to no longer own a retail computer store!

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