HP ZBook Studio G8

MSRP $6,863.00

“The HP ZBook Studio G8 is quick and well-built, however is priced manner too excessive.”

Professionals

  • Solidly constructed
  • Spectacular show
  • Skinny and lightweight for a workstation
  • Wonderful keyboard and touchpad
  • Good productiveness and artistic efficiency

Cons

  • Too costly
  • Efficiency would not match the value
  • Horrible battery life

HP has a whole line of transportable workstations aimed toward creators and engineering customers, from the extremely transportable ZBook Firefly G8 to the significantly highly effective ZBook Fury G8. Smack dab in the midst of the lineup is the ZBook Studio G8, a workstation aimed toward players as a lot as artistic professionals. Merely put, it’s not your typical transportable workstation that’s massive, heavy, and extremely upgradeable. It’s focused on the similar individuals who would possibly purchase a Dell XPS 15, Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Excessive, or MacBook Professional.

It’s additionally not an affordable laptop computer. I reviewed a configuration with the Intel Core i9-11950H vPro CPU and an Nvidia GeForce RTX 3070 GPU that lists a whopping $6,863 as its retail worth. As I’m penning this assessment, it’s priced at a nonetheless steep $4,392, although costs will fluctuate.

In both case, you’re spending a large premium to get a laptop computer with high-end elements and a handful {of professional} options. For most individuals, that gained’t be a profitable mixture in comparison with at present’s extraordinarily highly effective skinny and lightweight shopper laptops.

Design

A HP ZBook Studio G8 sits on a table showing off the backside and lid.Mark Coppock/Digital Developments

The ZBook Studio G8 seems to be extra like conventional skinny and lightweight laptops than a workstation. That’s deliberate, on condition that the laptop computer is supposed to attraction to each consumer-oriented energy customers and professionals searching for a extremely cell resolution. Have a look at the ZBook Studio G8, and also you’ll discover a placing resemblance to an HP Spectre of some years in the past. There’s an aggressive angle alongside all sides, sharp chamfers on numerous edges, and the rear edge is a pointy wedge that provides some aptitude to the design.

The colour is dubbed “Turbo Silver,” and the general aesthetic is refined however placing. It’s way more engaging than the Lenovo ThinkPad P15 Gen 2 that shares comparable elements, however is far boxier and old-fashioned. The ZBook Studio G8 extra instantly challenges the Dell XPS 15 in its feel and look, however the Dell is extra streamlined and simply as engaging.

Because of show bezels which can be very skinny on the perimeters and comparatively small on high and backside, the ZBook Studio G8 is a fairly sized laptop computer given its 15.6-inch 16:9 show. It’s simply barely bigger in width and depth than the XPS 15 with its 15.6-inch 16:10 show that boasts tiny bezels throughout, and it’s significantly smaller than the ThinkPad P15. It’s additionally skinny at 0.69 inches, in comparison with the XPS 15’s 0.71 inches and the ThinkPad P15’s 1.24 inches at its thickest level, and lighter at 3.96 kilos in comparison with 4.42 kilos and 6.32 kilos for the XPS and P15 respectively. The ZBook Studio G8 succeeds at becoming into the skinny and lightweight class whereas packing in some critical elements.

The ZBook Studio G8 is nearly as good as the perfect by way of construct high quality. There’s zero bending, flexing, or twisting wherever within the lid, keyboard deck, or chassis backside, and HP topics the laptop computer to a brutal suite of 21 army certification assessments. The ZBook Studio G8 is definitely equal to the Dell XPS 15 and the Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Excessive Gen 4, making it fairly a strong machine.

The ZBook Studio G8 doesn’t have the identical expandability as many workstations. It maxes out at 32GB of RAM, a lot lower than others that may be upgraded to 128GB, and the utmost storage is 2TB. There’s just one slot for a solid-state drive (SSD), the place many workstations have two — the ThinkPad P15, for instance, has two slots and might be upgraded to a whopping 16TB of storage. That’s the value you pay for being so skinny and lightweight.

A single USB-A port and a 3.5mm audio jack are on the left-hand side of the HP ZBook Studio G8.

Two USB-C with Thunderbolt 4 ports, a mini-Display port connection, and a full-size SD card reader are on the right-hand side of the HP ZBook Studio G8.

Connectivity is nice for a skinny and lightweight laptop computer, although thicker workstations are likely to have extra ports. You’ll discover a single USB-A port and a 3.5mm audio jack on the left-hand facet, and two USB-C with Thunderbolt 4 ports, a mini-DisplayPort connection, and a full-size SD card reader on the right-hand facet. Energy is offered by a proprietary connector fed by a large 200-watt energy provide. Wi-Fi 6 and Bluetooth 5.2 present wi-fi duties.

There are a number of “skilled” options that you simply gained’t discover on the everyday shopper laptop computer. For instance, there’s built-in Tile help to assist observe down your laptop computer if it’s stolen. HP’s Wolf Safety suite is available to supply hardware-enforced protection towards BIOS corruption and assault, and there are another safety features which can be solely accessible on HP’s business-class laptops. The chassis may also be sanitized, and has been examined to 1,000 cleansing cycles with choose household wipes. Whether or not these options add sufficient worth to justify the ZBook Studio G8’s worth is an open query.

Efficiency

A HP ZBook Studio G8 sits on a table facing forward.Mark Coppock/Digital Developments

My assessment unit was geared up with the 8-core/16-thread Core i9-11950H vPro CPU, an Nvidia GeForce RTX 3070 GPU, 32GB of RAM, and a 2TB PCIe SSD. It’s also possible to select as much as an Nvidia Quadro A5000 GPU if you would like actually skilled graphics, however in any other case, my assessment unit was maxed out. I ran it by our suite of benchmarks and found that though it’s a quick laptop computer, it doesn’t outclass some consumer-grade laptops that value lower than half as a lot.

The ZBook Studio G8 did effectively in Geekbench 5, coming in third in our comparability group behind the Apple MacBook Professional 16 and the Lenovo ThinkPad P15. It tied the Lenovo for first in our Handbrake take a look at that encodes a 420MB video as H.265, and third in Cinebench R23, once more behind the MacBook Professional 16 and ThinkPad P15. Lastly, within the PCMark 10 Full benchmark that’s a fantastic take a look at of productiveness efficiency, the ZBook Studio G8 got here in third behind the ThinkPad P15 and the Asus Vivobook Professional 16X working a Ryzen 9 5900HX CPU.

Primarily based on its efficiency alone, it’s exhausting to justify the ZBook Studio G8’s extraordinarily excessive worth.

Most telling, although, was the workstation’s efficiency within the real-world Pugetbench benchmark that runs in Adobe Premiere — a demanding software for which the machine is explicitly designed. The ZBook Studio G8 scored 612 within the benchmark, a strong rating however one which fell behind the ThinkPad P15, the Dell XPS 17, and the deliriously quick MacBook Professional 16 that trounced the remainder of the sector. The ZBook Studio G8 wasn’t even that a lot sooner than the Dell XPS 15 with a slower CPU and GPU. In brief, HP’s workstation was underwhelming in maybe crucial benchmark.

The one approach to characterize its efficiency, then, is that it’s definitely a quick laptop computer that can serve its skilled market effectively whereas pleasing productiveness customers on the similar time. However on the similar time, it’s not essentially sooner than the high-end shopper skinny and lightweight crowd. Primarily based on its efficiency alone, it’s exhausting to justify the ZBook Studio G8’s extraordinarily excessive worth.

Geekbench 5
(single/multi)
Cinebench R23 (single/multi) Handbrake (seconds) PCMark 10 Pugetbench Premiere Professional
HP ZBook Studio G8 (Core i9-11950H) 1637 / 9139 1594 / 11788 84 6432 612
Lenovo ThinkPad P15 (Core i9-11950H) 1691 / 9250 1596 / 12207 84 6866 724
Apple MacBook Professional 16 (M1 Professional) 1773 / 12605 1531 / 12343 95 N/A 956
Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Excessive Gen 4 (Core i7-11800H) 1520 / 7353 1519/10497 106 6251 432
Dell XPS 15 (Core i7-11800H) 1556 / 7692 1513/9979 103 6024 509
Dell XPS 17 (Core i7-11800H) 1568 / 8801 1525/10145 109 6209 692
Asus Vivobook Professional 16X (Ryzen 9 5900HX) 1544 / 8299 1486/11478 90 6486 571

Gaming efficiency

On condition that HP explicitly mentions gaming as one of many ZBook Studio G8’s strengths, and that it provides a per-key RGB-lit keyboard and ithe OMEN Gaming Hub utility, it’s honest to judge its gaming efficiency. The RTX 3070 ought to make it a aggressive gaming machine, however because it seems, its efficiency was decidedly blended.

The ZBook Studio G8’s 3DMark Time Spy rating was low in comparison with the comparability group, particularly the Razer Blade 14 and Lenovo Legion 5 Professional that each sported RTX 3070 GPUs. The HP redeemed itself in Murderer’s Creed Valhalla, the place it tied for first place, and it got here in between the Razer Blade 14 and Legion 5 Professional in Battlefield V. Its Fortnite rating was second-lowest, although, and it wasn’t terribly quick at Civilization VI, the place its CPU ought to have paid some dividends. General, the ZBook Studio G8 is undoubtedly able to competent gaming at 1080p and even 1440p, however it’s not going to beat out many devoted gaming laptops.

Laptop computer 3DMark Time Spy Murderer’s Creed Valhalla
(1080p Extremely Excessive)
Battlefield V
(1080p Extremely)
Fortnite
(1080p Epic)
Civilization VI (1080p Extremely)
HP ZBook Studio G8 (RTX 3070) 7391 77 fps 83 fps 89 fps 112 fps
HP Victus 16 (RTX 3060) 7341 59 fps 72 fps 99 fps 118 fps
Razer Blade 14 (RTX 3070) 8605 60 fps 96 fps 96 fps 111 fps
Lenovo Legion 5 Professional (RTX 3070) 9175 61 fps 73 fps 101 fps 114 fps
Asus ROG Strix G15 (RX 6800M) 10504 77 fps 109 fps 108 fps 150 fps
MSI GS66 Stealth (RTX 3080) 9097 70 fps 117 fps 140 fps 149 fps
Razer Blade 15 (RTX 2080 Tremendous) 7637 58 fps 98 fps 110 fps 134 fps
MSI Creator Z16 (RTX 3060) 6322 50 fps 57 fps 56 fps (1600p) 92 fps

I’ll word right here that the ZBook Studio G8 will get very loud when below full load, and through our gaming benchmarks produced sufficient noise that I wished to placed on a pair of headphones. The chassis additionally received fairly heat, with parts of the palm relaxation exceeding 126 levels Fahrenheit and the underside of the chassis hitting greater than 140 levels F. CPU temps stayed below 90 levels F throughout the 3DMark Time Spy benchmark. So HP did a wonderful job of protecting part temperatures inside an affordable vary.

Show

Closeup on the HP ZBook Studio G8's display.Mark Coppock/Digital Developments

My assessment unit got here with the 4K (3,840 x 2,160) OLED show, one among 4 selections, together with two Full HD (1,920 x 1,080) choices and HP’s DreamColor 4K show working at 120Hz. You usually can’t go fallacious with OLED shows, and mine definitely appeared nice. Colours have been dynamic with out being oversaturated, the show was loads shiny in all of my working environments (which doesn’t embody exterior within the Southern California daylight), and I loved inky blacks.

My colorimeter was principally happy with the show, however it wasn’t fairly as spectacular as some OLED panels I’ve examined. It was shiny at 413 nits, effectively above our 300-nit threshold, and distinction was wonderful at 28,880:1 (word that this can be a decrease rating than a few of my earlier OLED assessments, however I modified colorimeters, and it apparently assessments OLED shows otherwise). Colours have been vast at 94% of AdobeRGB and 100% of sRGB. Coloration accuracy was simply OK at a DeltaE of two.16 (1.0 or much less is taken into account wonderful). This compares to the Dell XPS 15 OLED show at 397 nits, 27,770:1 distinction, 97% of AdobeRGB and 100% of sRGB, and coloration accuracy of 0.41. The ThinkPad 15 had a extra common IPS show that was very shiny at 542 nits, and had a 1,040:1 distinction ratio, 76% of AdobeRGB and 100% of sRGB, and coloration accuracy of 1.49.

Inventive sorts will love this show, though they’d need the colours to be a bit extra correct. Everybody else may also benefit from the colours, brightness, and distinction, making the ZBook Studio G8 a wonderful laptop computer for each artistic and productiveness work.

Speakers on the HP ZBook Studio G8 rest next to the keyboard.Mark Coppock/Digital Developments

4 audio system, two tweeters and two woofers, present the audio, they usually put out copious quantities of quantity when turned all the way in which up. There was zero distortion as effectively, with clear mids and highs and a contact of bass. These are a number of the greatest audio system you’ll discover on a Home windows laptop computer, rivaling the Dell XPS 15 that’s the Home windows benchmark, however not fairly rising to the extent of the superb MacBook Professional audio.

You should utilize these audio system for all of your listening wants, from gaming to Netflix bingeing to music. No headphones or exterior audio system are required.

Keyboard and touchpad

The HP ZBook Studio G8's keyboard and touchpad.Mark Coppock/Digital Developments

The keyboard on the ZBook Studio G8 seems to be rather a lot just like the one on HP’s Spectre line, with loads of key spacing, massive keycaps, and a row of cursor motion keys alongside the fitting facet. Its change mechanism could be very completely different, although, being equally deep however with extra of a click on than a snap. It’s a snug and quiet keyboard that’s the equal of the Spectre’s wonderful model, even given its completely different really feel. My assessment unit featured the optionally available per-key RGB lighting that may cycle by 16.8 million colours, and it’s nearly as good as you’ll discover on a gaming laptop computer just like the Razer Blade 14. It’s odd to have such lighting on a transportable workstation, however once more, that demonstrates how HP sees its prospects utilizing the laptop computer.

The touchpad was massive and cozy, with a glass floor that made swiping exact. As a Microsoft Precision touchpad, it supported Home windows 10’s multitouch gestures and was a pleasure to make use of. The show was additionally touch-enabled and as exact as ordinary.

Home windows 10 Whats up help is offered by each an infrared digicam for facial recognition and a fingerprint reader within the upper-right nook of the palm relaxation. Each labored shortly and reliably.

There’s no privateness change or slider for the webcam, which was disappointing. And the webcam itself is caught at 720p.

Battery life

A HP ZBook Studio G8 sits on a table.Mark Coppock/Digital Developments

The ZBook Studio G8 has an 83 watt-hour battery put in inside, which isn’t large for this class of machine. The Lenovo ThinkPad P15, for instance, has 94 watt-hours of capability and the Dell XPS 15 virtually matches the HP at 86 watt-hours. Toss in some high-end elements and a power-hungry 4K OLED show, and my battery life predictions have been dire.

Issues have been simply as dangerous as I anticipated. Beginning with our web-browsing take a look at that cycles by a sequence of in style and complicated web sites, the ZBook Studio G8 managed simply 5 hours, about half of what we wish to see on this take a look at. The XPS 15 OLED went for 9 hours and the ThinkPad P15 hit 9.5 hours. In our video take a look at that loops an area 1080p film trailer, the ZBook Studio G8 lasted solely 6.25 hours, in comparison with the XPS 15 OLED at 11 hours and the ThinkPad P15 at 11.15 hours.

I additionally ran the PCMark Functions battery take a look at, the perfect indication of productiveness efficiency, and the ZBook Studio G8 hit 5.5 hours, the place the XPS 15 managed eight hours and the ThinkPad P15 hit 6.35 hours. Lastly, within the PCMark Gaming battery take a look at demonstrating how exhausting a laptop computer works whereas working on battery energy, the ZBook Studio G8 went for 91 minutes, across the similar because the XPS 15 OLED and about 40 minutes greater than the ThinkPad P15.

General, the ZBook Studio G8’s battery life was poor. You’ll must haul across the massive energy brick and plug in effectively earlier than a working day is full. In actual fact, in case your workload is in any respect demanding, you’ll be plugging in earlier than lunchtime.

Our take

The ZBook Studio G8 succeeds at packing workstation-level elements into a skinny and lightweight chassis. Nevertheless, it does so at the price of pure efficiency and expandability. In actual fact, aside from a number of skilled options that will or might not be helpful to the everyday creator and even engineer, the ZBook Studio G8 doesn’t exceed some shopper 15-inch laptops just like the Dell XPS 15 and the Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Excessive Gen 4 (which is definitely extra expandable than the HP).

That makes the ZBook Studio G8 an odd laptop computer. It’s a fantastic machine, little question about it. However it’s additionally horrendously costly with out including a lot to justify the funding.

Are there any options?

The ThinkPad P15 performs equally to the ZBook Studio G8, however is way more expandable, at the price of additional thickness and weight. It’s equally costly, however you’ll be glad that you would be able to improve the RAM and storage if the necessity arises.

It’s also possible to take into account MSI’s WS65 Cellular Workstation. It helps the identical fundamental elements and might be configured with as much as 64GB of RAM, however it’s additionally thinner and lighter and doesn’t have the identical expandability as some workstations.

Lastly, the Dell XPS 15 is a wonderful selection for those who don’t want these skilled options. It’s equally well-built and handsome, and it’s virtually as quick in our assessment configuration that wasn’t maxed out. Purchase an XPS 15 with its highest-end elements, and also you’ll possible get comparable efficiency for 1000’s much less.

How lengthy will it final?

The ZBook Studio G8 is solidly constructed and can final for years and years of productive service. It’s not as expandable as many workstations, although, so what you purchase is what you get. The three-year guarantee is welcome, nevertheless.

Do you have to purchase it?

No. Once more, the ZBook Studio G8 is a superb machine. It’s simply too costly in comparison with the competitors.

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