Review of HP Spectre x360 (2019): Really Elegant, but Really Priced.
this article was first published on nitecodes
Review of HP Spectre x360 (2019): Really Elegant, but Really Priced.
With its elegant and strong Spectre lineup, HP has set the golden standard for ultrabooks, rising up against the likes of Lenovo Yoga and LG Gram who have also sculpted their own significant market share. Last year we had the opportunity to review the 13-inch HP Spectre x360 and this HP ultrabook provided users the ultimate premium experience as my friend rightly puts it.
HP gave us the newest 13-inch spectrum x360 (2019) with an 8th-gen Intel Core i7 processor, 8 GB RAM, and 256 GB SSD. My ex-colleague Nikhil evaluated the predecessor to last year’s “gem-cut” Spectre x360 and praised the premium design, snappy quality, and charging characteristics that came into tow.
Like its earlier iteration, the fresh gem-cut HP Spectre x360 is also packed in an interesting retail package with a leather cover for the computer with a velcro flap (which is the best touch here and I enjoy it), a energy adapter and an global market attachment, and most importantly, the HP Pen. You’ll also get a few additional tips for the excellent HP Pen.
Design & Build
Let me begin by stating that if you thought the previous-gen Spectre’s design was something, well, you’re going to enjoy the design of the fresh Spectre x360 we’ve received here with us. It was my first instinct to check the Spectre x360 Poseidon Blue version. It is a fascinating color, striking at first glance, and the same appreciated by everyone on the Beebom team.
With its distinct designs and colors, HP has always managed to intrigue and attract customers, so that other popular ultrabook alternatives on the market appear bland and underwhelming. HP Spectre x360 evokes the same impression for me, not only with its separate color, But also the all-aluminum gem-cut design that this time around the business has embraced. The gold trims reflect light from all sides, and some heads will definitely turn. I know you think the edges might scratch you or chip you off while you’re carrying around, but I haven’t found any such problem. You’ll also notice one thing about the HP Spectre x360–it has a strong construction but it’s still quite lightweight, weighing less than 1.3 kg. While the previous generation HP Spectre x360 has maintained a relatively traditional design, the version x360 (2019) considers the business experimenting with sharp cuts and edges to further the machine’s attraction.The hinges are built really solid and the screen (which we’re talking about in-depth below) isn’t really wobbling, which is a great sign for an ultrabook. Moving on from the design, it must be its 360-degree form factor that pushes me towards the HP Spectre x360. It’s flipping screen can be flat just like that from a traditional laptop shape factor. Let’s look at the same thing:
HP Spectre x360 (2019) is a pleasant ultrabook in all ways, but there is a minor problem that has limited my ability to fancy the show onboard. First of all, the Spectre x360 features an amazing and vibrant 13.3-inch IPS LCD screen with full-HD resolution. The Full-HD display is great and I have no major complaints with it except for the brightness that I rarely felt wasn’t big enough for my liking and I would also have liked to see an anti-glare layer to save me from white lights that shine on the screen in certain situations.Also, it seems a little lackluster to include a Full-HD screen with small bezels on a premium ultrabook that costs more than Rs 1.50,000 in India. HP provides a 4 K nanobezel display outside India and on that crisp screen I’d love to edit my header pictures and stories. While justifying the exorbitant price tag, it would have been a much better experience.
HP has placed a lot of effort into making this ultrabook hybrid appealing to customers by providing a 360-degree hinge system, keeping all that aside. You can twist and turn the screen on this thing at any insane angle you like and support it like a tent, read a book or draw using the 360-degree HP Pen (which I discovered to be quite responsive) by folding it entirely or watching Netflix by putting it on your bed–thanks to the sturdy character. One of my favourite characteristics of this ultrabook will also have to be the Sure View embedded privacy screen, which you can activate by just pushing a button on the keyboard, and with a mysterious white layer it hides your screen.
This is the perfect addition for users who don’t like to share with all those sitting around or nosy neighbors who we’ve all encountered in our lifetime. It turns the brightness down, but those who see the screen at an angle will see nothing, which is definitely a good thing.
Keyboard and Touch Pad
Well, this is for me the most significant part of a laptop evaluation. For a excellent typing experience, the keyboard is essential and can create or break a buy choice. Well, I know the flat square keys on the HP Spectre x360 (2019) don’t look like much for the cost and give off the atmosphere of being out there like any other laptop, but I discovered that this keyboard was fairly nice. I mean, I’m not going to go to the length of saying it gave me the greatest typing experience to date, but it’s been quite satisfying.
Compared to the last generation version, the keyboard layout as well as the keys have not really changed and that means there are no surprises in the design. HP has maintained a fairly nice keyboard layout, not cramping unnecessary features or buttons on the deck.
I’d say typing on this keyboard is fairly comfortable. You might feel at the beginning that important travel is really small, but for an ultrabook it’s enough. I didn’t like the soft feedback, though.
I would also like to point out that this is a backlit keyboard deck with three levels of intensity and a welcome upgrade over its predecessor.There is no flex to the keyboard deck and I don’t expect the same from a spectrum, talking from experience. The huge touchpad is underneath the keyboard deck. Yeah, I’m saying massive because on ultrabooks we usually don’t see large touchpads, all about saving space and cutting characteristics. However, there’s no mess around the HP Spectre x360 and you can check out this monstrosity above. I prefer a soft-touch trackpad with the same sensation as the top lid of your laptop, but the absence of Windows Precision drivers was a little turn-off.
The HP Spectre x360 is a powerful and versatile machine powered by the latest Intel 8th-generation Whiskey Lake processor (up to i7-8565U, which is also the processor we used for this review) coupled with 16 GB RAM at 2133MHz and 512 GB PCIe SSD for lightning-fast boot times and charging times for the application.
Intel Core i7-8565U is an eight-threaded quad-core processor and a 1.8GHz base frequency introduced last year. It comes with the integrated graphics onboard of Intel UHD Graphics 620 and no dedicated graphics card that could be expected at such heavier price points.
However, this is an ultrabook produced for on – the-go efficiency rather than gaming –for which you should check out the Asus TUF lineup that we reviewed lately. The HP Spectre x360 (2019) has proven to be the ideal partner in day-to-day use for someone like me who utilizes his PC for about 12 odd hours a day. The computer operates Windows 10 out of the box and although users have problems with the operating system, this ultrabook handled all the workloads quite well–all thanks to the greater frequency RAM and PCIe SSD.
Everything proved to be no biggie from browsing the internet, watching on-end films, editing stories and pictures on the HP Spectre x360.The machine breezed with ease through the daily assignments, providing users a worthy contender on the market for a multitude of ultrabooks. Every day I used Adobe Photoshop CC for work purposes on this laptop and it not only boots up very fast but also didn’t give me a difficult time editing. We didn’t waste a ton of time on them as far as benchmark results are concerned, as we were already sure that the Spectre x360 (2019) was a powerhouse performance. However, on Geekbench, it manages to score an impressive over 5,300 in single-core and 14,000 in multi-core, We also ran PCMark on this computer, scored around 3,000 points, which certainly ranks it above average relative to other ultrabooks on the market.
Camera & Bio-metrics
Due to the inclusion of an IR camera above the screen, the HP Spectre x360 comes baked with Windows Hello face authentication function. If the screen is on and even if you’re not around, your ultrabook will always look for you. It definitely operates as advertised, the unlocking method is fairly quick and also operates under dimly-lit circumstances. The Spectre also houses a functional webcam at the top, the quality of which is good enough for Skype calls and video conferencing.
If you are an enthusiast of privacy but still want to use the IR camera, remember to switch your camera to the correct edge before logging in. One day I was frustrated because I had forgotten that I couldn’t log in using Windows Hello and turned the camera’s privacy toggle.
You can also depend on the fingerprint sensor, which is accessible on board under the arrow keys, apart from facial recognition. I like the sensor being placed here because it’s not crammed into the trackpad, like my Mi Notebook Air, or the energy button. The speed of unlocking is also quite good, so I don’t have any complaints.
Well, I knew I was in for a treat from the moment I saw the branding of Bang & Olufsen on the speakers just above the keyboard and the HP Spectre x360 wasn’t disappointed. On this ultrabook, you have four speakers–two downward-fired ones at the bottom and two above the keyboard under the grills of the speaker to generate a more immersive audio experience. Because of the aforementioned setup, while watching my favourite Netflix Korean dramas, I discovered myself glued to this laptop. These speakers produce fairly crisp bass and treble, the mids and highs being the most pronounced in comparison with the lows. The tuning is fairly nice and better than your laptop speakers on average.
Connectivity & Ports
Focusing on the ports on the Spectre x360 (2019), well, HP has kept it very minimal and is continuing its dedication to USB Type-C ports. The gem-cut on the correct houses a USB Type-C port and many individuals are amazed by its positioning, but with the energy button on the left, I enjoy using room and symmetry.
The 3.5 mm headphone jack, another Type-C USB port, and a microSD card slot are also available here. While there is space for a few additional ports, particularly on the left hand as it only houses the USB-A port, HP has chosen not to clutter its premium ultrabook.Otherwise we could readily have included on this side a mini HDMI or another USB-A port. I haven’t encountered any connectivity problems, Bluetooth or Wi-Fi, so that’s something else.
I had heard huge praise about the battery life on these computers before using the HP Spectre x360. Even the business says you’re going to be able to obtain up to 8 hours of ongoing use and well, it keeps you going without fail for quite a long time. HP integrated a 60Wh battery pack into the Spectre x360(2019) and I was able to obtain 100% brightness from the device over 6-odd hours on any typical office day, which is good for productivity buffs.The screen and speakers on the laptop also make it a desirable media machine, so with the HP Spectre x360 you will discover yourself watching Netflix or YouTube hours-on-end. I mean, if that’s not enough, you can turn it down to remove even more juice, which is even better. So, as you can see, the HP Spectre x360’s battery life is fairly strong and you’re not going to have to run and get your charger quite often. The one thing individuals find pretty fun and fascinating about charging this laptop is that the USB-C port is sitting on one of the edges, making it look fairly cool and unique.
Is HP Spectre x360 Worth The Money?
The Spectre x360 is possibly one of the most premium and attractive ultrabooks, with all the high-end features that we’ve come to expect from laptops in its price range. The machine is not only supported by powerful hardware, which gives it the power to roar through all the tasks thrown at it, but the Spectre x360 also has the same design.
The ultrabook gem-cut exudes style and trust, a quality of HP Spectre lineups that has always been the golden standard for a premium experience and is now being brought forward with the variant Spectre x360 (2019). If you’re looking for the best-in-class and premium experience of all and have the money to spare, well, don’t hesitate to bring this ultrabook into your life (starting at $2,036). However, if you think the HP Spectre x360 is too expensive for you, then don’t worry as there are a number of inexpensive and similarly priced ultrabook alternatives on the market as well. My favourite lot pick would be Microsoft Surface Laptop 2 (beginning at $1,127) offering a comparable but somewhat underpowered experience. And if you’re looking for a little match on the go to cool off your daily office job, well, the MSI PS42 (beginning at $1,098) is the laptop you should be considering over HP Spectre Line up
After a few weeks of using the HP Spectre x360 (2019), we investigate how the fresh variant stacks against its predecessor and whether it justifies the exorbitant price tag:
HP Spectre x360:Specifications
Before delving into my HP Spectre x360 experience, let’s take a quick look at some of the main features of this ultra book:
- Dimensions: 30.6 cm x 21.8 cm; height of 1.36 cm.
- Weight: 1.26 Kg.
- Processor: Intel Core i5-8250U / i7-8550U Processor 8th Gen Quad Core.
- Memory:LPDDR3 2133MHz up to 16 GB.
- Storage: SSD of 512 GB.
- Display: 13.3” Sure Privacy Display embedded; FHD IPS micro-edge WLED-backlit touch screen with Corning Gorilla Glass NBT (1920x 1080 pixels).
- Graphics: Graphics of Intel UHD 620.
- Wireless: Intel 802.11a / b / g /n / ac (2×2) 4.2 Combo and Wi-Fi.
- Ports: 2 Thunderbolt 3 (up to 40 Gb / s, Power Delivery, DP1.2, HP Sleep and Charge); 1 USB 3.1 Gen 1 (HP Sleep and Charge); Operating System: 64-bit Windows 10 Pro.
- Battery capacity: 60 WHr
- Stylish & durable construction.
- Strong performance.
- Windows Hello support for biometrics.
- HP pen stylus support.
- Sound quality is great.
- Amazing battery life
- Screen brightness problems
- Keyboard can feel mushy
- Touch pad is without precision drivers
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