HP Stream Laptop 14 Review: Inexpensive and Lightweight for Toting to Class

HP Stream Laptop 14 Review: Inexpensive and Lightweight for Toting to Class

The HP Stream 14 is one of the most affordable laptops on the market. Our HP Stream laptop 14 review will give you a better idea of performance and features so you can decide if this laptop is a good option for you.

HP Stream Laptop 14 Review: Inexpensive and Lightweight for Toting to Class

Purchasing a new laptop for work, school, or leisure is an investment. Selecting a laptop that delivers the kind of computing performance you need is challenging because of the different technical specs you must compare. Our HP Stream laptop 14 review will help you get a better idea of the performance this laptop delivers so you can decide if this laptop is right for you.

What Is the HP Stream 14?

HP is a well-known laptop manufacturer that stands out thanks to original innovations and quality products. The HP stream is an affordable entry-level option among the different laptops offered by this manufacturer.

The number 14 refers to the size of the display. The 14-inch display is one of the standout features of this lightweight and affordable computer.

hp stream laptop 14 review

The purpose of the HP Stream is to create a laptop that is as affordable as possible while being convenient to carry and suitable for college students. HP delivers on this promise by offering a versatile laptop in the $200 price range.

The use of Stream in the name of the laptop refers to the fact that the laptop is perfect for streaming content online. If you need a laptop to browse the web, catch up on your favorite shows and write papers for class, the HP Stream is the perfect budget option for you.

Even though HP doesn’t refer to this laptop as a Chromebook, the approach is very similar. Chromebook manufacturers offer lightweight computers meant to be highly portable and geared toward users who primarily need a laptop to go online, stream video content, and use a few work-related apps.

If you would like to get a laptop you can use to play video games, need to use applications that require a lot of RAM such as video editing software, or usually have several applications running at once, there are better options to consider.

On the other hand, if you can't justify spending more for a laptop that delivers computing power suitable for applications and games you won't use, the HP Stream 14 is an excellent option for you.

A Closer Look at the Specs of the HP Stream 14

We looked at the specs of the laptop to create this HP Stream laptop 14 review. Even though the HP Stream 14 originally came out in 2016, the specs are still impressive given the price range of the laptop.

The design is one of the features that immediately stand out. If you have been laptop shopping recently, you have probably noticed that manufacturers limit themselves to black and silver colors. HP offers a bold aqua blue laptop that looks fun and original.

The white keyboard creates a nice contrast with the blue color and makes the keys more visible. You will find a classic trackpad in the middle of the laptop.

The 14-inch display is more significant than what you will typically find on budget laptops. It's perfect for watching movies and shows and convenient if you need to read a webpage or write a paper. The 1366x768 resolution is what most laptops deliver. The color accuracy could be better but probably won’t impact your experience much.

The dimensions of the HP Stream 14 are 13.3x8.9x0.70." The slim design is perfect if you need a laptop you can easily carry to class. You can easily find a protective sleeve for the laptop, or use a messenger or laptop bag to protect it. It only weighs 3.17 pounds, which is probably lighter than most of your textbooks.

The HP Stream 14 includes a fairly standard selection of ports, including an HDMI port, a headphone jack, and an SD card reader. You will also find two USB 3.1 Gen 1 ports and a USB Gen 2.0 port.

hp stream laptop 14 review

The HP Stream 14 is different from other Chromebooks since the OS is Windows 10. Most Chromebooks use a different OS such as Chrome OS since it doesn’t require as much computing power. The HP Stream 14 is interesting since it’s one of the few budget laptops with Windows 10, which is an advantage if you are used to this OS.

The laptop comes with 4GB of RAM and 32GB of storage. It uses an eMMC or flash memory drive instead of a traditional solid state drive. Using an eMMC drive helps keep the price of the laptop down.

An eMMC drive is a good option if you’re shopping on a budget. In the past, eMMC drives were noticeably slower than SSD memory, but flash memory delivers a similar performance on modern laptops.

However, you should know that eMMC drives perform better with small file sizes. You won’t have any issues if you need to save a paper for school or go through some photographs. You might want to upgrade to a laptop with SSD storage if you need to work with large file sizes.

hp stream laptop 14 review

Here’s a more detailed breakdown of the specs:

Product nameHP Stream 14
Memory4GB DDR3L SDRAM
Storage32 GB eMMC
Processor1.6 GHz Intel Celeron N3060 processor with Intel Turbo Boost
Graphics cardIntel HD Graphics 600
SpeakersDual Speakers
Webcam and microphoneBuilt-in
BatteryThree-cell Lithium-Ion battery with 14 hours of video playback
Energy useEnergy Star certified
WarrantyOne-year limited warranty, 90-day phone support


Extras

  • Free McAfee 30-day trial
  • Skype 60min/month for one year
  • Office 365 personal for one year

How Much Does the HP Stream 14 Cost?

You can order the HP Stream 14 on Amazon for $230. Ordering the laptop from the official HP store will cost $220. You can get an additional three-year protection plan for $45 if you order the laptop from HP.

Before you order the HP Stream 14 online, you should know that there are two slightly different versions of the laptop around. It originally came out in 2016, and it looks like HP released an updated version at some point.

The version sold on Amazon is the older one while the HP store has the newer version of the laptop. There are two main differences between the two versions.

The old version features the Intel HD Graphics 400 chip while the newer version has the 600 chip. The newer model has a Lithium-Ion battery while the older HP Stream has a Lithium-Polymer battery. The new battery seems to make the laptop slightly heavier, but it also seems to deliver a longer battery life based on the difference in specs between the HP store and Amazon.

How Does the HP Stream 14 Compare to Other Laptops?

The HP Stream 14 came out in 2016, and there are a few more recent options to consider if you are shopping for a budget laptop.

Asus Chromebook C523NA-DH02

C302CA-DHM4 Chromebook 12.5 inch Touchscreen Convertible

Product nameAsus Chromebook C523NA-DH02
Display Size15.6."/td>

Operating SystemChrome OS
Storage32 GB eMMC
RAM4GB
Value5 out of 5 stars
Portability4.5 out of 5 stars
WarrantyOne-year warranty

This Asus Chromebook features a 15.6-inch display. The display has the same resolution as the HP Stream.

The hinge is very different from the HP Stream. You can open the hinge at a 180° angle and lay the laptop flat on a surface. You might not need this feature, but it can be convenient when streaming video content or showing something to others for a group project.

The nano-edge display is another feature that stands out. The HP stream has a somewhat bulky design around its display. The Asus Chromebook C523NA-DH02 has a display with much thinner edges for a modern design and larger screen.

The RAM and storage are similar to the HP Stream with 4GB of RAM and 32GB of eMMC storage. The 2.4 GHz Intel Dual-Core Celeron N3350 processor is more powerful compared to the HP Stream’s 1.60 GHz processor.

This Asus laptop comes with Chrome OS. This OS is an exciting choice if you mostly want to use your laptop to browse the web and stream content. However, Chrome OS can be a drawback if you think getting used to a new OS will be difficult.

The graphics chip is the Intel HD Graphics 500, which is slightly less performing than the 600 model you will find in the HP Stream.

The dimensions are similar to the HP Stream. This Asus Chromebook measures 14.1x9.8x0.6." This laptop is lightweight at 3.1 pounds and is perfect if you need something you can easily carry around campus.

The ports include two Type-C USB ports, a USB 3.1 port, an audio jack, and a MicroSD slot. You can use the USB 3.1 port to charge the laptop and cast the screen on a TV or other device. The laptop doesn’t have an HDMI port, but the USB 3.1 port has a similar purpose.

You can get this Chromebook for about $250 on Amazon. The price is a little higher than the HP Stream 14, but the larger display and Chrome OS make this laptop an interesting alternative.

Dell Inspiron 11 3000

Dell Convertible i3147 2500sLV review

Product nameDell Inspiron 11 3000
Display Size11."
Operating SystemWindows 10
Storage32 GB eMMC
RAM4GB
Value4 out of 5 stars
Portability5 out of 5 stars
WarrantyOne-year warranty

The Dell Inspiron 11 3000 is a two-in-one laptop with a 360° hinge. This flexible hinge is an interesting feature if you like to stream shows and movies.

It's a great budget option if you are looking for a laptop with Windows 10. The 10-inch display is a lot smaller than the HP Stream 14. A smaller screen isn't necessarily a bad thing if you are looking for a portable laptop, but the display can be a drawback for enjoying video content.

In spite of its small size, the display delivers a resolution of 1366x768 and includes an LED-backlit feature that is missing from the HP Stream 14.

RAM and storage are comparable since this Dell Inspiron laptop comes with 4 GB of RAM and 32 GB of eMMC storage.

The ports include an HDMI port, audio jack, a USB 3.1 port, a USB 3.1 Gen 1 port, and a MicroSD slot. The dimensions are very compact at 0.82x11.5x7.72."

This Dell laptop uses a different processor from the HP Stream 14, but the performance is similar. It comes with a Radeon R4 graphics chip that delivers a performance comparable to the HP Stream.

You can get this compact Dell laptop for $230 on the official Dell website. If you don't mind the smaller display, we think this affordable laptop is an attractive option due to the 360° hinge.

Pros and Cons of the HP Stream 14

After looking at the different features and specs of this laptop to create this HP Stream laptop 14 review, the affordable price is the feature that stands out the most.

We think the HP Stream 14 delivers outstanding performance for its price range. We like the fun aqua blue color, the 14-inch display, and believe the performance and battery life are perfect for what a college student needs.

There are a few drawbacks to consider. The eMMC storage isn't ideal for large file sizes, and the computing power isn't enough to run large applications. We would also like to see an edge-to-edge display like on the Asus Chromebook we mentioned above.

Pros

  • Affordable price tag
  • Excellent performance for the price range
  • 4 GB RAM
  • 32 GB storage
  • 14" display
  • Lightweight
  • Long battery life
  • Original color

Cons

  • No backlit feature for the display
  • No nano-edge display
  • No 360 degrees hinge

Is the HP Stream 14 a Good Option for You?

What can you expect from a laptop in the $200 price range? We think the HP Stream 14 establishes a strong baseline for what to expect from budget laptops with its sturdy design, long battery life, large display, and impressive computing power.

Overall, the laptop deserves a rating of 4.5 out of 5 stars. A few features are missing, but the laptop truly stands out among budget options.

This laptop originally came out in 2016, and it’s possible to find laptops with newer tech if you shop around, including newer processors or larger displays. However, the HP Stream 14 remains a great option in the world of budget laptops, and few other products pack as much power and performance.