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HP Elitebook 8570P

How to get a Blazingly Fast Laptop for Under $200


If you have been reading my articles on this website, you know that I believe most people are paying far, far too much money for the computing power they're getting. This is most likely because consumers still have the mindset that they had before the death of Moore's law, sometime around 2005. Before that, they were forced to buy a new computer every few years to avoid obsolescence. Since Moore's Law is now dead, I have said repeatedly that from a cost-per-computing-power perspective, you are now far better off buying a used, quality business laptop than a new consumer laptop. Actually, I don't believe anyone should be buying new consumer laptops. Perhaps, if more consumers took my advice, manufacturers would stop making laptops with built-in obsolescence for the unwary.

This week, I will explain one approach to getting a blazingly fast laptop computer for under $200--used, of course. Just to show you how fast this laptop really is, I'll compare it against one of the new, high-end Dell business laptops, the Dell Latitude 7400, for sale right now on Dell's website for $2169.

My HP Elitebook 8570P: Old but Fast

I bought my HP Elitebook 8570P about two-and-a-half years ago in nice condition for the great price of $209 on Ebay. These were it's specs then:

The closest thing I could find to such a great deal today on Ebay was the following HP Elitebook 8570P:

I admit the Core i7-3520m CPU is significantly slower than the one in my HP Elitebook. However, given that I paid $209 for my HP Elitebook two-and-a-half years ago, I am certain I could find a better deal if I spent more time looking. So, these days, a good deal on my HP Elitebook plus a 120GB Kingston SSD should come in at just under $200.

For the comparison which will follow, I replaced my old hard drive with a 120 GB Kingston SA400S37 SSD. I saw the same model today, used, on ebay for $24.49, including shipping. Crystal Disk Mark shows its performance in my laptop to be: Sequential Read: 539 MB/s, Sequential Write: 369 MB/s.

The Dell Latitude 7400: New, Fast, and Very Expensive

The specs for the Dell Latitude 7400 are:

Results of the Comparison

Since, I wasn't about to shell out $2169 for the Dell Latitude 7400, I will compare Notebookcheck's test results to the ones I obtained today for my Elitebook. I would have liked to have used the PCMark 10 software for this comparison, but it is quite expensive. So, I settled for a comparison using the free, Cinebench 11.5 test software. The table below shows the comparison:

TestMy HP Elitebook 8570PDell latitude 7400
Cinebench 11.5 OpenGL 64-Bit28.93 fps33.63 fps
Cinebench 11.5 CPU Multi 64-Bit6.80 pts4.88 pts
Cinebench 11.5 CPU Single 64-Bit1.49 pts1.67 pts
Crystal Disk Mark Sequential Read539 MB/s1073 MB/s
Crystal Disk Mark Sequential Write369 MB/s2698 MB/s
Table 1: Comparision of the HP Elitebook 8570P to the Dell Latitude 7400

The table above shows both multi-core CPU performance and single-core CPU performance. The OpenGL test is a test of GPU performance. The Crystal Disk Mark scores show how fast a single, large file can be read and written to the SSD's. The smaller the file, the more slowly it can be read and written. The read and write speeds for the Latitude look switched to me, but they are as reported by Notebookcheck.


As you can see, the Latitude's NVMe SSD blows my Elitebook's SSD out of the water. It's not even close. So, on tasks that require heavy file manipulation, the Dell will win every time.

But, look at the OpenGL and CPU results. My Elitebook is actually considerably faster in the multi-core CPU test and only a little slower in the single-core CPU and OpenGL tests. So, as far as GPU and CPU tasks are concerned, my Elitebook is roughly on par with the Latitude. This means the two should be nearly equal computationally and in game play. This would likely be rather surprising to most consumers who were told that the Elitebook was manufactured seven years ago in 2012 and can be bought used for about 9% of the price of the new Latitude.

I should point out that this is not the only such favorable comparison that can be made between old and new laptops. There are many, high-end business laptop models that are now a few years old, yet only slightly less capable than this year's new models (except when compared to the new NVMe SSD technology). All you need to do to prove this to yourself is to look for them on websites like Amazon, Ebay, and other lesser-known, used computer markets.

Related Articles:

When Buying a Computer, More Knowledge Equals Lower Cost

Know a Quality Computer when You see It.

How Powerful a CPU do You Really Need?

Know What You're Buying Before You Buy a Computer

Buy a Computer at the Knee of the Cost Versus Time Curve

Moore's Law is Dead: Here's the Proof


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