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HP Envy 34″ Curved All-in-One Review! (2017)

One of my most anticipated reviews of 2017 so far: This the HP Envy 34″ Curved All-in-One

Thanks to HP for sponsoring this video and allowing me to review this.

If you’re watching this then you’re either generally intrigued by this being the world’s widest curved all-in-one and you want to see it up close and personal, or you’re actually in the market for an all-in-one desktop. So I will say if you’re looking for the best alternative to an iMac, this may be your answer. The model I have was released in early 2017, and it’s currently $1899 on Amazon which I will link to in the description below.

The first thing you’ll probably notice is the huge 34″ curved display. It’s an ultra-wide Quad-HD LED-backlit micro-edge display with a screen resolution of 3440×1440 and let me tell you, this is a cinema lover’s dream. Watching movies and videos, especially ones that are shot in 21:9, is an immersive experience. The slight curve to the monitor along with the thin bezels, the anti-glare matte finish and just how wide the display is really makes you feel like you’re a part of whatever it is you’re watching. I’m not a gamer by any means, but playing games that don’t require an extremely powerful PC is a blast on this 34″ screen. On the other hand, I do edit a lot of videos and that’s where the HP Envy Curved all-on-one truly shines. The amount of screen space I have when editing videos is so convenient. It’s a Technicolor Certified Display so the colors are vibrant and bright but still true to life. Since this is a larger display, it does not have as many pixels per inch as the Retina iMac, for example, so you are sacrificing pixel density for the bigger screen, but there’s no doubt that the 34″ curved display is one of the best features about this computer. If you’re a multi-tasker like me who always has at least one YouTube video on while working in Evernote and doing other things, you’ll love how much space this display gives you. Just make sure your desk will be able to fit it. That’s important because this thing is big.

When I first saw the HP Envy Curved All-in-One, the design really stood out to me. It’s impressive how elegant yet simple they made this. The display is connected to the base by a sturdy aluminum stand which allows you to tilt the display forward and backwards but be aware that you cannot swivel it from left to right or raise its elevation. A nice touch is the 720p HD webcam that’s hidden by default. You can pop it out by pressing down on it, and then you can press down on it again to keep it hidden if you are taking part in private matters. But I am a little disappointed that that’s not a 1080p full HD webcam because that just would have made more sense with such a big display, but on the other hand it does have an infrared camera that’s great for signing onto Windows using facial recognition, something that I wish MacOS had.

Now, the base is where all the computing parts live as well as the sound bar. It’s packing some nice specs too: A Quad-core 7th Generation Kabylake Core i7 processor with 16GB of DDR4 RAM, a dedicated AMD Radeon RX 460 with 4GB of memory, and one of my favorite features: a 256GB Solid state drive alongside a 1TB hard drive. So with these high specs you’re definitely getting fast performance along with ample storage space. It also has built-in WiFi and Bluetooth and comes with Windows 10 pre-installed. Now the first thing I do recommend you do if you get this is to update all the drivers along with the BIOS because updating the drivers will help reduce the fan noise when the computer is hard at work. With the old drivers the fans seem to make quite a bit of noise during intensive tasks like gaming and rendering HD videos, but updating to the latest drivers should help with that. But from the fast bootup to loading apps very quickly and managing multiple browser tabs with ease, the performance has been very snappy.

On the back of the base there are four USB 3.0 ports, one HDMI out, one HDMI in, a display mode switch, an Ethernet port, power in, and a security slot. On the right side there is a headphones jack, a memory card reader, and a Thunderbolt 3 port. HP also put in a Qi wireless charging pad on the base so if you have a compatible smartphone unlike me you can place it there to charge wirelessly.

Other than the design and the display, my other favorite feature is the built-in sound bar made by Bang & Olufsen who are known for their high quality audio products. This soundbar is made up of quad front-facing speakers along with two passive radiators mounted upwards at a 45-degree angle so if you position yourself right in the middle you’ll get a brilliant sound experience. The speakers sound rich and full but most of all they get super loud. Like really loud. And a very convenient bonus is the circular touch-dial on that base that you can use to quickly adjust the volume, which actually works really well and it’s my preferred way to turn the volume up or down.

My biggest pet peeve, and you can take that literally, biggest pet peeve is the hefty power adapter that powers everything. On one hand I love the fact that with an all-in-one there is only one cable coming out of the back. However, this thing is pretty massive and it’s not easily hidden so keep that in mind.

The HP Envy Curved All-in-One does come with its own wireless keyboard and wireless mouse. The mouse is powered by the included AA batteries and despite the thin plastic top, it feels pretty good and decently solid when using it. The keyboard is rechargeable and can be charged using the included USB cable. It’s a condensed laptop-style keyboard so if you want to game you’ll be better off getting a separate full size keyboard, but for most it does the job well.

So if you’re looking for a well-designed Windows alternative to the iMac or you’re just looking for a fast elegant all-in-one desktop for watching movies, listening to music, playing mid-tier games, or doing any type of productive work, the HP Envy Curved All-in-One is something to definitely consider. The link will be in the description below if you want to check it out. As always, give this video a thumbs up if enjoyed it and subscribe if you want more tech videos like this in the future. Thank you for watching. My name is Andy, and I will see you in the next one.


Dell XPS 13 vs MacBook Pro 13″ – Which is Better?

Welcome to the ultimate showdown between the best 13″ laptops: The MacBook Pro 13″ vs the Dell XPS 13.

Both of these models I have were released in 2016 and both of them have the 6th generation Intel Skylake processors in them. Having said that, the XPS 13 and the MacBook Pro that I have are not 100% the same when it comes to the rest of the specs, but this video will focus on the bigger picture, and at the end of this video I’ll share my verdict so you can figure out which one is best for you.


The Dell XPS 13 is obviously cheaper. It’s cheaper overall, they offer more affordable options for under $1000 while the MacBook Pro starts at $1499 in the US. For the models I have here, it’s currently $1699 for the Dell XPS 13 and $1999 for the MacBook Pro. Now to make pricing more fair when you’re shopping, you can compare the non-touch screen of the Dell XPS 13 to the non touch bar model of the MacBook Pro along with other different hardware configurations. But overall, Dell is obviously cheaper so Dell does win the pricing battle.


Dell has a much wider variety of ports on the XPS 13 featuring one USB-C Thunderbolt 3 port, two USB 3.0 ports, a headphone jack, and an always convenient SD card slot. The MacBook Pro, on the other hand, only has a headphone jack and either two USB-C Thunderbolt 3 ports on the non-touch bar model or four USB-C Thunderbolt 3 ports on the touch bar model. So that’s a pretty no-brainer; Dell obviously wins the ports battle because they offer more ports than the new MacBook Pro, which Apple went ahead and took away all the ports that you’re used to and replaced them with USB C ports, so nobody has all of those ports for their devices yet, so it’s kind of an inconvenience right now. It will probably be beneficial in the future sometime, but not right now. For right now, Dell does win the ports battle.


Both the Dell and the MacBook Pro come in configurations of i5 or i7 processors with turbo boost, 8 or 16GB of DDR3 RAM, and SSDs from 128GB to 1TB, and Intel Iris graphics. So the performance really just depends on the configuration you choose. However, I will point out that my XPS 13 has a Core i7 with 16GB of RAM while my MacBook Pro has a Core i5 with just 8GB RAM, and I did a video editing export test and the MacBook Pro handled it way better, 4x better to be exact. Now that test was obviously dependent on the software, and Final Cut Pro X on a Mac is known to usually have faster export times because it’s optimized specifically for the Mac hardware. But since these laptops have so many similar specs, I’m calling this one a tie.


Both of these displays are very beautiful. The Dell XPS 13 comes in at 3200×1800 on that Quad HD InfinityEdge IPS touch display, with super thin bezels, so right off the bat Dell is hard to beat. The MacBook Pro screen still looks great with a resolution of 2560×1600 plus the new P3 color space and at 500 nits, it gets a little brighter than the XPS 13, and in my opinion it does have the advantage of having a 16:10 aspect ratio, but when the display is compared side by side to the Dell XPS 13 you can tell that the XPS display is just better. So Dell does win the display battle. Up next is the battery life. Dell has a slightly bigger battery at 56 wH compared to the 49 wH on the MacBook Pro. However, the non touch bar MacBook Pro has a 55 wH battery, which should be right around the same battery life as the Dell XPS 13. In my test, the XPS 13 went from full charge to 0% in about 8 hours, and the MacBook Pro went from 100%-0% in about 7 hours so you’re getting about an hour longer battery life with the XPS 13; however, the MacBook Pro did charge faster than the Dell XPS 13, actually by 50 minutes faster. It went from 0-100% charge in 90 minutes, while the Dell XPS 13 went from 0-100% in about 140 mins, so the MacBook Pro does charge faster,  but the Dell has a bigger battery and a better battery life, thus winning the battery battle.


Starting off with the weight, the MacBook Pro 13″ weighs right at three pounds. The Dell XPS 13 weighs right under three pounds at two pounds and fourteen ounces to be exact. The XPS 13 is squeezed into a typical 11″ laptop shell which makes it one of the most portable 13″ laptops out right now. They’re both almost the same exact length, but the MacBook Pro is about a half inch longer in depth. However the MacBook Pro appears to be thinner than the XPS 13. It’s so close, and even though Dell wins the weight battle by two ounces, the MacBook Pro wins the thinness battle by a hair, so that makes it a tie for me. You really can’t go wrong with either of these laptops if you’re planning on being portable and mobile.


Starting off with audio, the speakers on the MacBook Pro just sounded better to me; they have the faux grills on top, so the speakers aren’t really directly under the grills on the MacBook Pro but they do sound better. They’re coming up through the top while the Dell XPS speakers are really small and they’re on the side. So the MacBook Pro just sounded cleaner to me when I was listening to music and vocals and things like that. The MacBook Pro build is very solid, it’s attractive and symmetrical, the space grey looks very sleek, and I can open the lid without the laptop moving. The XPS 13 looks very good with the silver on the outside and the inside has a nice black carbon fiber finish. And I love the battery gauge button that used to be an advantage that MacBooks had until they stopped doing it, but the XPS 13 does have a common issue with coil whine and some trackpad issues with certain software. It’s not symmetrical, and you cannot open the lid without the laptop moving, which doesn’t seem like a big deal, but it does make a difference. Both keyboards have backlights; the MacBook Pro’s keys are a little bigger than the Dell’s keys but the biggest difference is the key travel. The MacBook Pro has Apple’s new 2nd generation butterfly mechanism keyboard which is totally subjective to the user but I like the MacBook Pro keyboard a little better than the traditional keyboard on the Dell XPS 13. It feels nicer when typing on it. Some people hate the butterfly mechanism but I’m a fan, especially with the 2nd generation. The MacBook Pro trackpad is king compared to the XPS 13. It’s bigger and works like Apple has always made them even with the Force touch. The Dell trackpad still physically clicks down but I still have issues with the Dell trackpad in Google Chrome. Having said that, the Dell XPS 13 still does have the best trackpad on a Windows machine that I’ve ever used, but just not as good as Apple’s yet. So MacBook Pro wins the overall design category.


Which has the best operating system? This is going to cause a lot of ruckus in the comment section! Windows 10 is fantastic and is the Windows version ever, but MacOS is still superior. You will most likely run into fewer problems in a five year span with a Mac than you would with Windows. Plus, the MacBook Pro can run Windows 10 virtually if you need it while Windows still cannot run MacOS which isn’t Windows fault but it’s still an advantage. Lastly, it is entirely possible and becoming more prevalent for Macs to get viruses but it’s still nowhere near the virus problem that Windows machines face. So as you can tell I think the OS battle goes to the MacBook Pro.


Based on those categories that we just went over, if you add them up the Dell XPS 13 does win. Does that mean the MacBook Pro is a bad buy or it’s a bad laptop? No, it’s a good laptop, very expensive, but it’s a good laptop. And it all depends on what you do specifically as a user, depends on what kind of equipment you own, maybe you own an iPhone, maybe you’re invested in the Mac environment. Just like I am, I’m a Final Cut Pro user. It makes more sense for me to own a MacBook Pro because I can edit videos faster than on the Dell XPS 13. But if you are looking at them side by side, the comparison tests we did, I tried to be objective as possible with these tests and the categories. And just prioritize the categories based on your use and then you can find out which one is best for you. But if we’re going side by side with the tests we just did the Dell XPS 13 does seem to be a better laptop and the best 13 inch laptop that you can get right now. Both links to these laptops will be in the description below. Let me know in the comment section below what you think of these laptops, if you own one, if you’re wanting to buy one. Thank you so much for watching. My name is Andy. Make sure you hit that subscribe button and give this video a thumbs up if it helped you out. I will see you guys in the next video.

Dell XPS 13 Review: Better than a MacBook?

Best price of Dell XPS 13 on Amazon

So you’re wondering about the new Skylake Dell XPS 13 ultrabook? As a primary Mac user I replaced my MacBook Pro with the Dell XPS 13 for the past month, and I’m here to share my experience and full review with you right now. Full Disclaimer: Dell did send this to me at no cost, but these are all my honest opinions. The Dell XPS 13 9350 was released in late 2015 and starts at $799. The model I have comes with Windows 10, Intel’s 6th generation Core i7 6500U 2.5Ghz processor, 16GB RAM, 1TB PCIe solid state drive, Intel HD 520 Graphics, and a 13.3″ Quad HD InfinityEdge touch display.

The Dell XPS 13 is currently the world’s smallest 13″ laptop, fitting a 13.3″ display into a typical 11″ laptop frame thanks to the nearly bezel-less display. The outside is made of silver aluminum that definitely shows off its simple yet durable design. The inside of the laptop has a smooth carbon fiber finish which looks nice but feels even nicer. The left side has the charging port, a new USB-C Thunderbolt 3 port, a USB 3.0 port, a headphone jack, a battery guage button, and the left speaker grill. The right side has a lock slot, a USB 3.0 port, an SD card reader, and the right speaker grill.

When I first saw this laptop I immediately thought “Yep this is definitely Dell’s attempt at a MacBook killer.” But it’s hard to determine exactly which MacBook is closest in similarity to the Dell XPS 13. It has a stunning screen like the 12″ Retina MacBook. It has the portability and slimness of the MacBook Air, and it has the power and ports comparable to the 13″ MacBook Pro. Obviously my 2009 15″ MacBook Pro is slower and bulkier than the Dell XPS 13, but I did install an SSD and more RAM in my MacBook Pro a few years ago so that’s why it has lasted me this long and still works perfectly. So let’s see how well the Dell XPS 13 performed for me during the past month.

Let’s start with the InfinityEdge touch display because it’s one of my favorite features. The 3200×1800 QHD screen is absolutely gorgeous. It’s boasting 5.7 million pixels. That’s 276 ppi compared to the 2015 Retina MacBook’s 226 ppi. The colors are rich with just the right amount of contrast, and since it is an IPS panel it has good viewing angles. It can get really bright too. As a YouTuber I love watching HD videos on full screen mode, and I’m sure photographers and graphic designers would love this display. The only downsides are that some apps haven’t updated to accommodate such a high resolution screen so those apps can appear as lower quality, and since the display has such a thin border Dell had to put the webcam in the bottom left which is kind of awkward. But hey, at least it’s an HD webcam unlike some other laptops. The touch screen is a glossy finish with scratch-resistant Gorilla Glass, but they do have a matte finish option for their non-QHD model if that’s what you prefer. Speaking of the touch screen capability, it’s definitely not necessary but it is fun to use and actually convenient to have. It’s very responsive. You’re probably saying “Andy, no way I would ever need a touch screen on my laptop.” But hear me out.

Let’s talk about one of the best yet most frustrating features of the Dell XPS 13: the touchpad. I’ll start by saying this is the best touchpad I’ve ever used on a Windows laptop. One of the reasons I immediately fell in love with my MacBook Pro when I first got it was the trackpad and mainly the 2-finger scrolling. Apple really mastered their trackpad, not just with the physical smoothness of touching it but with the smooth buttery 2 finger scrolling and multi-gestures. I’ve never had any problems with the Apple trackpad. For the most part, the Dell XPS 13 touchpad does a good job at implementing these features (I’ve especially enjoyed the three finger tap and swipe gestures) and the touchpad is comfortable to use.

However, the touchpad has big problems with certain apps, most importantly Google Chrome. This may be a Chrome issue or a Windows 10 driver issue because the touchpad works great in Microsoft Edge and Internet Explorer. In those apps the 2-finger scrolling is almost always smooth. But in Google Chrome the touchpad constantly causes the page to jump up and down when trying to 2-finger scroll. I tried changing any relevant touchpad setting in Windows and nothing seemed to fix this problem. It’s extremely frustrating because I need precise smooth scrolling when responding to my YouTube comments one by one. I thought it was just me but it seems others are experiencing the same problem. So hopefully this gets fixed soon with an update. But that’s why the touch screen is convenient to have because I can scroll with the display instead of with the touchpad if needed. On the other hand, I love the keyboard. It has backlit chiclet style keys which I got accustomed to on my Mac and I seem to be able to type super fast like Bruce Almighty on this thing.

Now let’s talk about where the Dell XPS 13 really shines: mobility and performance. It weighs less than 3lbs and is super thin, making it one of the most portable laptops out right now. It’s much easier to carry around compared to my 15″ MacBook Pro. It has a 56 watt hour battery that lasts a decent amount of time. I’m getting around 6-12 hours of battery life on a single charge, closer to 6 hours when I’m streaming Spotify and watching YouTube videos the whole time and closer to 12 hours when I have the brightness down and I’m just browsing the web or typing notes. It takes about 2 and a half hours to fully charge the battery while using the laptop. In addition, you can purchase the separate Dell Power Companion which is a portable battery that can charge your XPS 13 and other devices in case you need some extra power for a special trip.

On the performance side of things, with Intel’s 6th generation Core i7 Skylake processor and 16GB of DDR3 RAM, the XPS 13 is a speedy machine and can handle nearly any day-to-day task. The 1TB PCIe solid state drive has considerably fast read and write speeds which you will notice when the laptop starts up from a cold boot in about 10 seconds flat. I was able to copy 16.5 GB of video files from my SD card onto the Dell’s SSD in 3 minutes 31 seconds compared to a copy time of 3 minutes 14 seconds on my 2012 Mac Mini’s Fusion Drive. Like with any solid state drive, apps load very quickly and I don’t think I’ve ever gotten stuck with the spinning circle of death. I tend to have a ton of browser tabs open at the same time and the XPS 13 was able to handle it just fine, no stuttering or freezing up. It scored a 3279 for single-core and 6868 for multi-core on the GeekBench benchmark tests. So even though this ultrabook was primarily designed with mobility in mind, it is still fast and powerful. Don’t expect to edit 4K videos or render 3D graphics without struggling, but it can definitely handle casual HD video editing and other multimedia work like Photoshop. Another exciting feature is the new USB-C Thunderbolt 3 port, which has transfer speeds up to 8x faster than USB 3.0 and is twice as fast as Thunderbolt 2. The USB-C port has the ability to charge the XPS 13 and power up to two 4K displays. If you need more ports, you can purchase the Dell Adapter which can turn the USB 3.0 port into a single hub for Ethernet, USB, HDMI, and VGA ports.

As you can see I really do enjoy this new Dell XPS 13. Even with its minor flaws like having to uninstall bloatware and McAfee right out of the box, or having to manually update the drivers and BIOS to solve screen flickering and battery problems, or the speakers making a slight popping sound every now and then. Those types of inconveniences usually don’t happen with Macs since the software and hardware are from the same company. Not saying they never happen, but it is just a different experience. So is the Dell XPS 13 better than the MacBook or MacBook Air? That totally depends on what you’re specifically looking for out of a laptop. For me personally, I own an iPhone and as a video producer I use Apple’s Final Cut Pro X to edit all my videos so it just makes sense for me to use a Mac unless I want to start using a completely different video editing app. So a Mac would be best for you if you’re like me and you’re already invested in the Apple ecosystem, maybe you own an iPhone or iPad and you want the additional benefits of owning a Mac because of the tight integration between iOS and OS X. One of the features I really missed when I was using the XPS 13 was the ability to respond to texts from my laptop. You can do that with a Mac if you use an iPhone. So that’s just one example. The biggest thing holding me back is Final Cut Pro. As long as I’m using that exclusively I can’t permanently move to a Windows laptop.

However if you’re not already invested in the Apple ecosystem and you’re looking for a small, compact, yet fast laptop that looks good and feels solid then you should definitely consider the Dell XPS 13 9350. Other than it being the best Windows ultrabook of 2016, if I had to pick one word to describe the XPS 13 it would be: Productivity. This is perfect for people who are always on the go but still need a strong machine to help them get things done quickly. That’s why I’m keeping mine and will continue to use it as my go-to travel laptop when I don’t need to do any video editing.

The Dell XPS 13 gets a thumbs-up from me. What do you think? Leave a comment and let me know!

Dell XPS 13: Can It Replace My MacBook?

If you’re not new to my channel you probably know that I primarily use Macs in my personal life. I’ve been using Mac OS X since 2009 when I got my first MacBook Pro (which I still use to this day) and I haven’t owned a Windows laptop or Windows desktop in over 8 years.

So when Dell reached out to me and asked if I wanted to experience the new Dell XPS 13 Ultrabook my first immediate reaction was “No, I don’t really use Windows laptops.”

But then I started doing some research on the Dell XPS 13 which was just released at the end of 2015 with Intel’s 6th generation processors, and this thing has been topping the list on a lot of popular tech blogs as the best Windows laptop and the best Windows ultrabook out right now. That definitely sparked my interest and as I got to researching it more I noticed that it looks very similar to the new MacBook.

Then I realized that this new Dell XPS 13 is the PC equivalent of a MacBook. It’s kind of a mix between the MacBook Retina 12″ and the MacBook Pro 13”. If you are in the market for a MacBook or new Windows laptop and you don’t really know which way to go or you want to see which laptop performs better at certain tasks then I am here to answer that question for you.

I’m taking the challenge. For the next month I will be replacing my MacBook Pro with the new Dell XPS 13 9350 and using that exclusively. In about six weeks I will give you the conclusion and my full review of the Dell XPS 13. I’ll let you know how it sizes up to the Mac experience coming from a primary Mac user myself.

Definitely stick around and find out how this works out. I’m looking forward to using the Dell XPS 13. It certainly looks awesome. Also, full disclosure, Dell did send this to me at no charge but I will be completely honest and unbiased in my review. We’re going to find out if this is the best Windows ultrabook out right now and is it really a MacBook killer? Please subscribe to my YouTube channel so you will be notified when I release that video here in about six weeks. It’s going to be fun. Also  make sure you follow me on Twitter and Instagram.

Best Antivirus for Windows in 2017

If you’re a PC user, having an antivirus is almost always a necessity.

But which antivirus is the best? Here’s my vote for the best antivirus and anti-malware applications in 2017 for Windows computers.

Best Antivirus: BitDefender

In my opinion, BitDefender offers the best free and premium antivirus applications for Windows in 2017. BitDefender Free Edition has everything you’d want in a free antivirus: hassle-free installation, easy-to-use and simple interface, quiet and unobtrusive, lightweight and optimized, and strong threat prevention. It’s a top-ranked antivirus that consistently gets rated as one of the best antivirus programs by security companies each year.

Many people can feel safe with the free edition, but if you’re less tech-savvy and want the peace of mind of having the most complete protection for your Windows computer then BitDefender Total Security 2017 is a solid choice when you want a premium antivirus. It gives you everything you need to keep your computer and data protected if you don’t know much about safe computing and safe web browsing.

Best Anti-Malware: MalwareBytes

MalwareBytes is a free anti-malware program that every Windows user should have installed. The free version features an on-demand scanner that does a great job at finding and removing malware such as worms, Trojans, rootkits, spyware, adware and other threats that can slip by your typical antivirus program.

It’s a smart move to have this installed as a second line of defense along with your main antivirus program. You can run a weekly scan to make sure your system is clean. They also offer a premium version for just $24.95 per year that can be used for real-time protection and scheduled scanning to keep you fully protected without worrying about scanning manually.

More Tips to Stay Safe

  • Don’t install software from random websites. If you install software, make sure it’s from a trusted source.
  • Avoid Internet Explorer. Use a more secure web browser like Chrome orFirefox. Also consider an adblocker.
  • Don’t click on links or pop-ups. If you encounter links, hover your mouse over them to preview and verify the destination. If it looks suspicious, don’t click.
  • Don’t visit sketchy or unsafe websites.
  • Don’t install toolbars. Consider using Unchecky.
  • Don’t click on links in emails or download attachments from un-verified sources.
  • If you see something like “OMG watch what happens when this fight breaks out!” on Facebook, don’t click it. Just don’t.
  • Subscribe to MyTechMethods on YouTube!
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