Look, I don’t expect a ton from a notebook that’s less than $300. To make something at that price, you have to cut corners somewhere. But the $259.99 HP Notebook 15-ba009dx cuts corners nearly everywhere, from the cheap build quality to the subpar display to the battery life that’s less than half the length of its nearest competitors. Sure, its speakers sound OK, but you can get a laptop that cuts fewer corners elsewhere, and I recommend that you do.
It shouldn’t come as a surprise that this cheap laptop feels really, well, cheap. It’s made of black plastic, and the ribbed lid with HP’s logo has a lot of flex when you press down. Lifting the lid reveals the 15.6-inch, 1366 x 768 display; an island-style keyboard with a number pad; and a black deck with some racing stripes. The black plastic edges around the deck are sharper than I expected, which caused me some trouble while typing (see below).
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