Now what makes a notebook a great notebook? Is it 'Uber' specifications and components? Hardly. A good notebook most definitely will consist of great features, but being a mobile extension for most people, there is a lot more at play. Since you are going to be stuck with your notebook for a long time, it had better be one that you are 100% comfortable with, and the HP Pavilion dv9014tx provides these creature comforts to make it worth investing in.
Sporting a glossy black and silver finish with signature contour lines, the dv9014tx is drop dead gorgeous from any angle you look at it. Even with the display panel closed, its streamlined construct masks an actual thickness of 41.8mm (at the thickest point). Scrutinizing the notebook closely for design flaws, we turned up nothing and even uncovered small attention to detail such as a decent coat of lamination over the hand rest and keyboard. Such extra protection as notebook veterans would know, will prevent smudges and most of all the quick deterioration of paint from wear and tear, especially over the hand rest area.
Examining the touch pad, we noticed that there is a sloped depression for the thumb to rest upon. This might seem trivial to some, but it certainly makes a big difference when used day-in and day-out as less strain is actually applied on the index finger while the thumb is resting at a lower level. Also, the dedicated scroll bar on the touchpad allows you to scroll vertically without having to reach for the arrow keys. We also found the left/right touchpad buttons to be extremely tactile and are real depressible buttons (of comfortable travel) and not the usual click buttons found on most notebooks.
Moving on to the keyboard, we were very pleased to find a full numeric keypad on the dv9014tx, a definite plus that will bear some weight in the outcome of this review. However, not all was bright and rosy on this side. Having to make way for a full sized layout, some keys such as the right Shift key had to be reduced in size, leaving what was left of a Shift hanging in limbo. After some failed attempts to get used to the smaller key, we finally settled on using just the left Shift key instead. These are minor user preferential matters when it comes to input devices, so we do suggest giving a it try along with the touchpad to really understand what you're investing into and to gauge your comfort level. After all, it's not something you can discard once you've placed an order unlike a desktop system, but in our opinion, we were comfortably content while testing the notebook.