HP Pavilion 500-480 Review

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November 21, 2014
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Today, it’s time to take a look at the HP Pavilion 500-480 desktop, a Fall 2014 release with quad-core AMD processor and Windows 7 Professional. The price is well below 500 bucks, so budget hunters might also find it a desirable pick. However, let’s not make hasty conclusions just yet, but take the desktop under closer examination below.

The main things

So, HP Pavilion 500-480 comes with a quad-core CPU, more precisely AMD A8-6410. The CPU has base speed of 2.0GHz and turbo speed of 2.4GHz, and offers similar performance than the better known Core i3 processors from Intel. Generally, for everyday computing and some heavier tasks the performance is fine. Thanks to the four cores, also multitasking should be effortless on this AMD.

The system has four gigabytes memory installed. It’s installed on one chip, and one slot is free on the motherboard. The maximum supported memory is 16 GB, so you can easily add more if the default 4GB isn’t enough.

For storage, the HP offers a 1024GB 7200RPM hard drive. Giving you lots of space, it’s also tad faster than older 5400RPM drives which is still nothing compared to solid-state drives. But the storage space itself is indeed big, and to give you an example, the drive is easily able to host hundreds of movies on it.

The desktop doesn’t have Windows 8 for the delight of many. Instead, it comes with pre-installed Windows 7 Professional, the 64-bit edition.

About gaming

A big question for many is the gaming performance. On HP Pavilion 500-480, it’s sadly not that great. The graphics engine is called AMD Radeon R5, a fancy name, but still an integrated graphics chip of subpar performance. It can play many modern games, but the question is with what frame rates. Battlefields would end up having around 20 FPS, while the heavy Watch Dogs and Thief would run with even less frames. Older games, like Minecraft, should easily exceed 30 FPS at least on low settings.

Connections

HP Pavilion 500-480 contains in total 6 USB ports. Two of those are in the front, both being USB 2.0. The rest are in the back where the USB 3.0s are marked with a blue connector. The back panel also has VGA and DVI-D outs for video, although no HDMI is supported by default. To connect with HDMI monitors, you could use a cable or an adapter.

Networking options are 10/100Mbps Ethernet and 802.11b/g/n single-band WiFi. Bluetooth support is not listed in the specifications.

For file transferring, a 16x DVD burner and media card reader (SD, SDHC, SDXC, MS, MS Select, MS Pro and MS MagicGate) are both found in the front panel.

Anything else to remember?

The computer case is a mini tower with dimensions of 14.5″ height, 6.9″ width and 15.4″ length. There are no free bays for additional 5.25″ or 3.5″ drives. On the mainboard, there’s a free PCI-E half-length mini card socket, however due to size constraints no PCI-E x16 slot is available. The power supply is just 65W, which wouldn’t probably handle a full-size expansion card anyway.

Not surprisingly the desktop doesn’t come with a monitor, but basic USB keyboard and mouse are shipped with it. Some software is also installed, namely MS Office and McAfee LiveSafe 2013 trials.

Verdict

HP Pavilion 500-480 is a desktop made with budget shoppers in mind. It costs less than 500 bucks and has performance adequate for everyday computing and some demanding use, like programming and occasional Photoshopping. Gaming on it would be possible to an extent, although friends of modern games wouldn’t probably be too pleased about the frame rates. Connectivity is basic with 6 USB ports and a WiFi. To sum it up, the HP is a basic desktop similar to other models of the same price, and as a simple home or office computer it should do its job well.


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