HP ENVY 13 13-ab016nr Ultrabook Review

After a small brake we are getting back in action and taking a look at HP’s refreshed ENVY 13 Ultrabook. For this review I will be looking at the HP ENVY 13-ab016nr that comes with the latest generation hardware and some interesting goodies. So let’s see what comes with the new and updated version.

The Exterior

When it comes to the ENVY lineup of products HP has always tried to make them have a premium look and feel. The new HP ENVY 13 is no exception in the line up. There are 3 color variations you can choose from, two silvers and one gold. For here we are only going to be talking about the bright silver version of the 13-ab016nr model.

HP ENVY 13 13-ab016nr Ultrabook left side viewThe entire body and the display cover are built out of machined aluminum. This makes this laptop very sturdy and light. The build quality is top notch. The bottom of the top cover features a chromed plate with the ENVY name and 2 small rubber stoppers. At first I thought it was a bit weird to have the entire load of the laptop body be transferred through the hinge to rest on the back of the display. On further inspection I noticed that it lifts the keyboard up at an angle that is better for typing, so it’s actually a good design decision.

On the inside the FullHD 1080p (1920 x 1080 pixel) IPS screen gets a matte black plastic bezel. High DPI(dot per inch) screens are always a good sign on laptops. They make the image and text that much crisper than expected. The top border features the built in webcam and dual microphones for noise cancelation. Other than the new HP-logo on the middle of the bottom border there are no further design queues for the screen assembly.

HP ENVY 13 13-ab016nr Ultrabook left side view openThe palmrest continues with the silver finish both for the chicklet style keyboard and touchpad. The touchpad on the HP ENVY 13 is more rectangular than you would normally find on other laptops. It is wider and thiner than normal. There are no visible click buttons on it, that being take care of with the bottom corners and gestures. The speakers are located on top, on both sides of the keyboard. This means it has very good sound compared to other models with the speakers underneath the body. As a final detail, the power button on the top left corner just above the keyboard.


Connectivity options of the HP ENVY 13 13-ab016nr Ultrabook

The HP ENVY 13 is very well equipped in the connectivity department.

  • the right side of the body features the power connector, one HDMI-out and 2 USB 3.1 Ports.
  • the left side of the body features the Kensington-lock-port, a microSD-card reader (not full sized SD, careful), the new USB-Type C connector and the now standard headphones-microphone combo jack
  • on the inside it features the latest wireless technology with WiFi 802.11 b/g/n/ac and Bluetooth connectivity.

The performance

While the new HP ENVY 13 comes in different flavours and hardware combinations, we are looking at the 13-ab016nr model variant. This version comes with the newest 7th generation Intel Core i5-7200U processor running at 2.5Ghz, enough for pretty much anything a regular user can through at it while still maintaining very good battery life.

On the multitasking front, thanks to its 8GB of LPDDR3 RAM, it can handle running multiple productivity and multimedia applications at the same time. It is enough even for the most tab addicted Chrome user, you know who you are.

The storage is where we can see the first low point of the HP ENVY 13. In the 13-ab016nr configuration it only comes a 256 GB SSD. While it is on the small size, it is one of the new super fast NVMe kind making it super speedy. Any laptop equipped with these new SSDs boot up in seconds and are extremely responsive. This is one of those pro or con things.

Finally we get to the battery life. HP declares that the ENVY 13 can go for up to 14 hours on a single charge. The battery is a rather small 3-cell 57.8 WHr unit. I for one am usually very skeptical with battery life claims and I don’t see why this laptop should be an exception. A far more realistic number is in the 8 to 10 hour range if you don’t baby it and actually use it as intended.

For all intents and purposes the HP ENVY 13 in the 13-ab016nr configuration makes for a very good, high mobility, high performance laptop. If what you are looking for is getting some quick light work done on the go this is laptop is perfect. You can also get HP ENVY 13 with larger storage,better CPU and different color options.

Review Date
Reviewed Item
HP ENVY 13 13-ab016nr Ultrabook
Author Rating
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Who is it for? discussing who would benefit most from this laptop...

  • Student
    There has to be something seriously wrong or lacking with a high mobility lightweight laptop for me to not recommend it for students. The HP ENVY 13 13-ab016nr is one of those Ultrabooks that are perfect for a long day of notes taking and document editing on the go. The battery life delivers the goods and there is more performance inside than most students can us.
    The sturdy aluminium body will definitely handle the wear and tear of dorm room and student life.
    What is lacking on this particular model that might pose a problem is if you need more storage space, and I think you do. So get it with an external HDD or get the better equipped version.

  • Business User
    We do love our Ultrabooks here and the HP ENVY 13 13-ab016nr is one of the good ones. Particularly if you want to use your laptop for business on the go there are no better solutions.
    With this particular laptop you get a high resolution high DPI screen making text extra crisp, it gets very good battery life and has more performance than you would ever need.
    I don't think you need the extra storage space of a more expensive model.

  • Casual User
    If you are looking for a stylish, light and mobile laptop for casual webbrowsing and the occasional document editing then look no further than the HP ENVY 13 13-ab016nr. The performance is enough for your needs and thanks to the very good build quality and aluminium body it should last for quite some time.


Even if the Ultrabook name is slowly dying out, the HP ENVY 13 13-ab016nr is definitely one of them.
It comes with up to 12 hours of battery life a high resolution, high DPI screen and the newest in technologies. It features the latest in processor, connectivity and storage solutions. It is a very good up to date laptop.

While there is quite a lot to like about the new HP ENVY 13, the 13-ab016nr version severely lacks in the storage department. While 256GB would be enough for some, it's nowhere near enough for most people that are looking into buying this laptop.

Useful Accessories


When I first came across HPs refresh of their 13-inch ENVY model I wasn't honestly expecting much beyond a hardware and minor styling changes. Well HP proved me wrong and built a high quality aluminium bodied high tech laptop. We had a look at the 13-ab016nr version of HPs new ENVY 13-inch laptop here. It is a very good laptop with plenty of performance for almost anyone. The only lack I was able to find was the limited storage space, but everything else on the laptop is top noch. I can highly recommend this laptop for anyone looking for a good work laptop for on the go with plenty of battery life.
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Technical Details

Processor Intel Core i5-7200U 2.5GHz
Video Card Intel® HD Graphics 620
Audio Two Built-in Stereo Speakers with Bang & Olufsen audio tuning
Operating System Windows 10
Display 13.3-inch 1920 x 1080px
Storage Drive 256 GB SSD -rpm
WiFi 802.11 b/g/n/ac
USB 2.0 Ports None
USB 3.0 Ports 3
Built-in Camera None
Built-in Microphone Yes
Optical Drive none
Memory Card Reader Yes
Bluetooth Yes
Headphone-out Yes
VGA-out -
HDMI-out Yes
LAN-out -
Color Silver
Width 12.8 in.
Depth 8.9 in.
Height 0.55 in.
Weight 3.3 lbs.
Battery Life Up to 14 hours
Warranty 1 Year Limited Warranty

Updated on April 2nd, 2017

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