Yesterday HP officially announce the Elitebook 2560p notebook. It’s an ultraportable aimed at enterprise businesses and buyers looking for a top-of-the-line, sub-4 pound computer that has yet to shed its optical drive. Like its main competitor, the Lenovo ThinkPad X220, the 2560p has moved to a 12.5-inch (16×9) display but the changes didn’t stop there. The 2560p, which replaces the 2540p, moves to Intel’s Sandy Bridge (second gen Core i5/i7) processors and has the option to use both 7200RPM drives and SSDs.Aside from the larger display and new processors/graphics the 2560p is extremely similar to the 2540p. The other notable difference is that the capacitive buttons above the keyboard on the 2540p have been replaced with three physical buttons on the right side, above the keyboard.The 2560p is 810G tested for ruggedness, so it should have no trouble putting up with the rigors of day-to-day business use. Some of the features include a magnesium bottom, aluminum lid, toughed hinge design, and a latch to open and close the lid.In addition to updating the standard (clam-shell) laptop, HP also updated their Elitebook tablet. The 2740p becomes the 2760p, complete with that same Sandy Bridge gear. The display on that model remains 12-inches instead of moving to 12.5.The 2560p will go on sale on May 23rd, starting at $1099. The 2760p is available now for $1499.Sal’s ThoughtsThe Elitebook 2540p was arguably the best 12-inch business laptop of its generation and it’s quite possible that the 2560p will continue that trend. The attractive metal exterior and the inclusion of an optical drive set this system apart from the ThinkPad X220, which is otherwise quite competitive (and actually better when it comes the keyboard and cursor controls).The 2560p marks a minor change for the notebook–it’s a simple shift to 2011 (Sandy Bridge) components combined with a slightly larger display. The shift from 12-inches (16:10) to 12.5 (16.9) was surely done because of better pricing on 16:9 panels from the LCD manufacturer, which explains why Lenovo moved the very same year.With up to 14 hours of battery life and an optical slice battery HP has been doing a great job of balancing weight and longevity. The fact that this system remains the only enterprise-ready ultraportable with an optical drive is just as important though, so don’t expect too many people to drop the DVD drive and replace it with a high performance 2.5-inch hard drive.The 2540p was an excellent notebook and while the 2560p doesn’t add in anything unique it will remain a great option for large businesses and demanding consumers.