This study investigated the effect of shape, size, and surface modification of hydroxyapatite (HAP) fillers on the degree of conversion (DC) and mechanical properties of a model BisGMA/TEGDMA composite initially and after 4 weeks of storage. Ten percent of conventional glass fillers were replaced by HAP spheres (Sph), silicon-doped spheres (SphSi), whiskers (Wh), silicon-doped whiskers (WhSi), and nanosized HAP particles (Nano). Spheres were specifically structured agglomerates consisting of a central void and radially orientated primary particles, whereas whiskers were compact monocrystals. DC, Vickers hardness (HV), flexural strength (Fs), flexural modulus (Ef), compressive strength (Cs), and compressive modulus (Ec) were tested. There were no significant differences in the DC between all tested groups. HV decreased by 5.4–17% with the addition of HAP, while Fs increased by 13.9–29% except in Nano group (decrease by 13%). After storage, Sph and SphSi groups showed similar HV, Ef, Cs and Ec and higher Fs than the control. The fracture mode of HAP spheres was through the central void whereas whiskers showed longitudinal delamination, transverse, and mixed fractures. HAP spheres with or without silicon- doping have a potential to be part of the filler content of dental composites. © 2013 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. J Biomed Mater Res Part B: Appl Biomater, 101B: 1469–1476, 2013.