There's a lot to love about HP's Envy 15, unless accurate colors are important to you: as we discovered in January, the optional (and otherwise excellent) $150 1080p Radiance Display can't distinguish red from orange, or violet from blue. Today, we've finally got a statement from HP about the issue, and we're afraid it's not good news. "We wanted to reassure our customers that this panel is functioning properly," a representative wrote, only later admitting that "colors may appear differently than they do on other displays."
HP actually claims the Radiance Display has a larger range of viewable colors than many other screens, which definitely sounds suspect given what we've seen. Admittedly, there are a lot of comparatively terrible displays on the market, though, so perhaps it's completely accurate.
The company does promise to release a software utility that will let HP Envy 15 owners adjust the default color settings of the display. Here's hoping the tool has some special low-level access to the underlying hardware in the screen, because when we tried a couple of off-the-shelf color calibration tools, we only got darker oranges and darker blues: red and violet were out of reach. Read HP's full statement below.
HP understands that some customers have expressed concern regarding the appearance of the color red in the ENVY 15 full High Definition (HD) panel, and we wanted to reassure our customers that this panel is functioning properly.
HP ENVY Series notebooks use optional premium LED-backlit display panels that have a higher color gamut (range of viewable colors), brightness and viewing angles than many display panels. This means that some colors may appear differently than they do on other displays.
We understand that customers may have their own preferences on color settings, so in response to customer feedback, in the coming weeks we expect to offer an optional software utility that customers can download if they would like to adjust their default color settings to suit their needs.
For customers who need an even higher color gamut and color tuning for professional grade applications for example, certain HP notebook models and stand alone displays offer DreamColor technology.