HP Pavilion Laptop 14 (2022) Review (2023)

In a sea of budget laptops defined by the slightest of spec variants, it’s difficult to stand out. The 2022 edition of the HP Pavilion Laptop 14 we just tested (starts at $449.99; $799.99 as tested) does enough to poke its head above the crowd, with a low starting price, lots of configuration options, and a well-executed build shared across all models. It features a full suite of ports, commendable overall performance, respectable battery life, and a comfortable keyboard and touchpad. There’s not a lot to find fault with, especially if you can find our specific test model (14t-dv2097nr) at its sub-$600 Cyber Monday sale price (projected by HP at the time of writing). While the Lenovo IdeaPad 3 14 and the Microsoft Surface Laptop Go 2 are our current top picks in this class, consider the Pavilion Laptop 14 for a late-2022 budget-laptop buy, especially if you can snag it well below list price.

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A Slim and Sleek Budget Build

HP's Pavilion design won’t turn too many heads, but it’s still a decent-looking laptop at this price. The all-silver look is more interesting than all-black laptops, particularly in budget-friendly systems. There are other color options if you configure your own model on HP’s site, though, including ceramic white, pink, and gold (each for a $15 upcharge).

HP Pavilion Laptop 14 (2022) Review (1)

(Credit: Kyle Cobian)

Naturally, the chassis is plastic, so it doesn’t feel as high-quality as laptops that cost over $1,000, but that is to be expected. There is some noticeable flex if you push around the keyboard and touchpad, but nothing that should disrupt or concern you through normal use.

In terms of chassis size, this 14-incher is pretty portable at 0.67 by 12.8 by 8.53 inches (HWD) and 3.11 pounds. Plenty of ultraportable laptops these days come in under 3 pounds, but the difference between this and those is negligible, and those tend to be pricier systems.

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(Credit: Kyle Cobian)

All this adds up to a laptop that's easy to carry under your arm, and will fit in any bag without weighing you down. It’s almost exactly the same size as the Lenovo IdeaPad 3 14 (0.78 by 12.76 by 8.49 inches, 3.1 pounds), one of our recent favorite budget laptops. The Microsoft Surface Laptop Go 2, the most premium option in this tier, comes in at 0.62 by 10.95 by 8.12 inches and 2.48 pounds.

This laptop's 14-inch size refers to the display (measured diagonally), which in this case is a full HD resolution (1,920-by-1,080-pixel) IPS panel. The quality is decent for an affordable system, though the maximum brightness (rated at 250 nits) is not so illuminating. If you’re looking at the configurable version on HP’s site, you can upgrade to a touch option, or a brighter 400-nit option.

HP Pavilion Laptop 14 (2022) Review (16)

(Credit: Kyle Cobian)

I touched on the build quality, but how does it feel to use? The touchpad is about average among all laptops, but above average for laptops at this price. It’s plastic but doesn’t feel chintzy, pans smoothly, and responds well. The keyboard is a positive surprise, too—not the most satisfying I’ve used, but with a pleasant bounce. Our expectations are generally lower below $1,000, and while there is a little deck flex if you’re pounding away on the keys, that’s about it for build compromises.

HP Pavilion Laptop 14 (2022) Review (17)

(Credit: Kyle Cobian)

Finally, for the physical design, we come to the ports and connectivity. For a smaller laptop, connectivity is admirably varied. The left edge is home to an audio jack and a USB Type-A port, while the right flank holds another USB-A port, a USB Type-C port, an HDMI-out connection, and the power jack. HDMI in particular is rare for laptops this size, and even USB-A isn’t a given these days. If this will be your one and only PC, you’re pretty well covered. The USB-C connection doesn't support Thunderbolt, but does offer power delivery.

HP Pavilion Laptop 14 (2022) Review (18)

(Credit: Kyle Cobian)

Also included is a 720p webcam, which produces so-so video quality. The image is rather grainy, and light sources get blown out easily, but it gets the job done. We’re seeing more 1080p cameras with better sensors in 2022, but generally not at this price. The Pavilion 14 also features Wi-Fi 6 and Bluetooth wireless connectivity.

HP Pavilion Laptop 14 (2022) Review (19)

(Credit: Kyle Cobian)

Component Choices: 12th Gen Intel and More

HP's Pavilion 14 is quite configurable. In addition to those other color options mentioned above, there are several component choices. The base model starts at $449.99 for a Core i3-1215U, 8GB of memory, a 256GB solid-state drive, and our same display.

Beyond that, you can jump up to a Core i5 or Core i7 processor, paired with a low-end Nvidia GeForce MX550 GPU (instead of the default integrated graphics), 12GB or 16GB of RAM, a 512GB or 1TB SSD, and the other display options.

HP Pavilion Laptop 14 (2022) Review (20)

(Credit: Kyle Cobian)

This model (14t-dv2097nr) of the Pavilion 14 is fair for the price, and arguably well rounded. For a $799.99 list price, you receive an Intel Core i5-1235U with integrated Iris Xe graphics, 16GB of RAM, and a 256GB SSD. What’s better, at the time of writing, there is a sizably discounted Cyber Monday sale price expected to hit for this system: $549.99. If you can grab that deal, or find it for a similar price in the future, it’s a very appealing value.

These processors, while Intel’s latest mobile generation, are still U-Series chips, so the performance ceiling is limited. CPUs with the U designation in their name are for smaller, power-limited machines, but still plenty capable of everyday tasks. Similarly, integrated graphics solutions (which is all you’ll really find at this size and price) are serviceable for some light gaming and movie watching, but not much else. Let’s put this all to the test with our benchmark suite.

Testing the 2022 HP Pavilion Laptop 14: A Competent Cruiser

We’ll pit the Pavilion 14 against the following laptops, which are relevant competitors with similar prices and/or components…

Lenovo's IdeaPad 3 14 ($519 as tested) and the IdeaPad Flex 5i 14-Inch ($799 as tested) are comparably priced, equipped, and sized, making for ideal points of reference. The Microsoft Surface Laptop Go 2 ($799.99 as tested) is perhaps the best-designed laptop in this space, while the Acer Chromebook Spin 714 ($729 as tested) is a comparable Chromebook alternative. (It will not be able to run all of the following Windows-based tests.)

Productivity Tests

Our first-line test for laptops is UL's PCMark 10, which simulates a variety of real-world productivity and content-creation workflows to measure overall performance for office-centric tasks such as word processing, spreadsheet work, web browsing, and videoconferencing. We also run PCMark 10's Full System Drive test to assess the load time and throughput of a laptop's boot drive.

Three other benchmarks focus on the CPU, using all available cores and threads, to rate a PC's suitability for processor-intensive workloads. Maxon's Cinebench R23 uses that company's Cinema 4D engine to render a complex scene, while Primate Labs' Geekbench 5.4 Pro simulates popular apps ranging from PDF rendering and speech recognition to machine learning. Finally, we use the open-source video transcoder HandBrake 1.4 to convert a 12-minute video clip from 4K to 1080p resolution (lower times are better).

Our final productivity test is workstation maker Puget Systems' PugetBench for Photoshop, which uses the Creative Cloud version 22 of Adobe's famous image editor to rate a PC's performance for content creation and multimedia applications. It's an automated extension that executes a variety of general and GPU-accelerated Photoshop tasks.

If you’re choosing from among this group, it’s a pretty even field, with little performance variance. Looking at the Pavilion 14 on its own, you can expect it to handle any everyday home and office tasks without much difficulty. I didn't experience any slowdown through normal use, and the scores show general proficiency. For example, 4,000 points on PCMark 10 is our baseline for competency on everyday productivity tasks, and the Pavilion 14 cruises over that mark. If you’re seeking a general-use laptop (and don’t expect outstanding media creation or editing speeds), this HP will fit the bill.

Graphics and Gaming Tests

We test Windows PCs' graphics with two DirectX 12 gaming simulations from UL's 3DMark, Night Raid (more modest, suitable for laptops with integrated graphics) and Time Spy (more demanding, suitable for gaming rigs with discrete GPUs). We also try two OpenGL benchmarks from the cross-platform GFXBench, run offscreen to accommodate different display resolutions.

Integrated graphics—that is, the graphics tasks are handled by the CPU's own onboard graphics cores rather than a dedicated GPU—have come a long way, but can still only do so much. None of these machines even approaches the graphics performance of gaming or media-creation laptops with discrete GPUs.

That means you can expect the Pavilion 14 (and the rest of these laptops) to do some light-to-moderate gaming at best, and you shouldn’t rely on them for any hobbyist or pro-grade graphics-based tasks. Read our separate integrated graphics testing piece to learn what to expect from such solutions, and their limits.

Battery and Display Tests

We test laptops' battery life by playing a locally stored 720p video file with display brightness at 50% and audio volume at 100% until the system quits. We make sure the battery is fully charged before the test, with Wi-Fi and keyboard backlighting turned off.

To further evaluate laptop displays, we also use a Datacolor SpyderX Elite monitor calibration sensor and its Windows software to measure a laptop screen's color saturation—what percentage of the sRGB, Adobe RGB, and DCI-P3 color gamuts or palettes the display can show—and its 50% and peak brightness in nits (candelas per square meter).

The battery life is acceptable, taken against a tight field here. The battery life can be a bit longer or shorter than this depending on what you’re using the laptop for, but generally, it should last you through the day. For a portable system, that’s a major deciding factor.

The display color coverage and brightness results are underwhelming but, as you can see, are also par for the course for this tier of machine. The display is fine for casual use, and acceptably bright at maximum brightness settings; it’s just that—as with performance—this is another reason not to use the HP Pavilion Laptop 14 as a content-creation or media-editing device.

Verdict: A Budget Laptop With a Lot to Like

For a wallet-friendly laptop, the 2022 HP Pavilion Laptop 14 (dv2097nr model) is free of any major design or feature faults, and has plenty to offer. If you can grab it for the sale price projected at the time of writing, the deal grows even sweeter.

Quite a few budget-friendly laptops have passed through PC Labs (we’ve named several in this review—the Lenovo IdeaPad 3 14 and Microsoft Surface Laptop Go 2 are our favorites), but this stands just above most of the pack. This edition of the Pavilion Laptop 14 doesn’t do anything exceptional enough to earn an Editors’ Choice award, but it leaves us little to complain about, and it should be on your list of considerations for budget-laptop shopping. It's all in the sale timing.

(Video) HP Pavilion 14 Plus Review: Worth the Price? | GTR

HP Pavilion Laptop 14 (2022)


(Opens in a new window)

See It$449.99 at HP(Opens in a new window)

Starts at $449.99


  • Intel 12th Gen CPUs deliver acceptable all-around performance

  • Affordable price with plenty of configuration options

  • Wide selection of ports


  • Subpar webcam

  • A bit of chassis flex

The Bottom Line

A solid value that dodges any significant pitfalls, HP's Pavilion Laptop 14 (2022) is a well-rounded budget model with peppy performance and a decent feature set for the money.

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