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HP Spectre x360 (13-inch) Rewiew


I haven’t stopped obsessing over Spectre x360 since I laid my eyes on it and is mostly unparalleled when it comes to perfection. It is a great development over its predecessor and is equipped with Intel’s 10th Generation processors and has a highly modernized framework.      

This review first gives you an overview of its classy design which is very compact due to its extremely thin display bezels. The display is extremely clear and bright, and the colors are spectacularly presented and stay true to their actual tonality. One of the greatest advantages it presents is over 13 hours of battery life. In a day and age where everyone is hustling, this feature allows you to use your laptop at a length without running around for a plug-point.     

The keyboard puts your comfort above everything else and you are provided with a stylus as well. It is apparent why it is one of the best 2-in-1 laptops in mankind’s history. With its latest updates, it poses tough competition to Dell XPS 13, and many argue that the former defeats the latter without a doubt.  

HP Spectre x360 price and configuration options

Spectre x360’s base model is priced at $1,099. This particular model comes with a 1080p display, a Core i5-1035G1 CPU, RAM of 8GB, and 256GB SSD.

Throw in $200 more, and you will we the model we have reviewed. This model is ramped up with Core i7-1065G7 CPU, 8GB of RAM, and a 512GB SSD  

In case you are a designer, photograph or just an admirer of a good display screen, pitch in another $200. For $1,499 you get a 4K OLED model, with Core i7 CPU, 16G RAM, and 512GB SSD. In case you are looking for 1 TB model, you may have to go for the higher-end mode costing $1,699.  

HP Spectre x360 design

If you buy Spectre x360, you will not look anywhere else as its beauty is captivating.

Spectre x360 opted for slim bezels but also kept all of the other important features intact, unlike the other competing laptops. HP was a mastermind, who created the world’s smallest IR webcam (2.2 mm) to pull of such slim bezels without compromising the camera quality. If you overwork your laptop on a regular process, Spectre x360 is ideal for you as it comes with enlarged air inlets which will keep your device cool. And what’s more? The only drawback with its design is the shift of top-firing speakers to the bottom of the laptop.     

Spectre x360 is hands-down gorgeous.

The edge-to-edge display will immerse you in your computing experience and its beveled edges add to its beauty. The top of the laptop is adorned with the standard HP logo which is stylized in silver to match its hinges.  

Once you choose to start working on it, you are greeted by a silver surface which stations matching keys. If you prefer some color on your laptop, you can go for other colors like Poseidon Blue coupled with brass accents or the Nightfall Black juxtaposed with copper. But we personally prefer the regal silver color which resembles precious jewels under light, and goes hand-in-hand with the lid, deck, and the touchpad.          

Though there’s no denying that this piece is beautiful, it would be unfair to ignore its functionality. It is a 2-in-1 laptop and the flexible hinges let you prop it up in different ways- tent, studio, and tablet modes. They are also robust and durable, and do not interrupt your workflow through sways.    

Spectre x360 is 12.1 x 7.7 x 0.7 inches and weighs 2.7 pounds. Though Spectre x360 is lighter than many of its competing models, it is still thicker than them.

HP Spectre x360 ports

While USB Type-A Port is an element of the past for most brands, Spectre x360 lets it make a comeback. This port is exposed following a drop-jaw mechanism on the left side and you can use a UUSB 3.1 Type-A cable to make use of it. Though this feature requires the user to lift the laptop up a little to connect any cable, its utility exceeds that of a dongle’s so I have no complaints.

The left side is also where the headphone/mic jack resides. On the right side, you will find two Thunderbolt 3 ports and one microSD cart slot. I only wish they would’ve thought of distributing the Thunderbolt 3 ports on both sides, allowing us to charge either way.

HP Spectre x360 display

The display comes with two touch-screen options which include 1080p and 4K OLED. Despite the stark difference that the names suggest, 1080p will not disappoint you in any way. It is vivid and colorful. And all of us have had problems of not being able to see the screen when we sit outdoors, or our battery drained quickly as we had to maximize its brightness. But this low-power display is bright enough to enjoy your laptop in your backyard.  

I watched Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone and I swear I almost felt like the spells, in all their glory, were being cast on me as the yellows, and whites, and blues beamed through the Spectre x360’s display.

The 1080p display is very clear and sharp and does not let you miss out on details. So the next time you’re playing a video game, you will find all the Easter Eggs.   

The touch screen is extremely sensitive in a good way, and reacted promptly to all the actions I performed. I also tested the on-screen keyboards, which I had no trouble using to surf through the net. The display covers about 109% of the sRGB spectrum, which is where some other models like XPS 13 and the previous Spectre x360 win in terms of vividness of picture.    

Like we said, if brightness has ever been an issue, you can close your eyes and go for Spectre x360 which has enhanced its brightness over its previous models. With its maximum brightness sitting at 369 nits, it is better than any average laptop and Yoga C930. XPS 13 2-in-1 has a slight edge in this as well, with its peak touching 516 nits. 

HP Spectre x360 performance

Spectre x360, with its Intel Core i7-1065G7 and 8GB of RAM, is a daily user’s dream as it offers prolonged durability through its strong processor. I have used the laptop for various purposes in one day, and the running was smooth without any hassles. And add to that, is ran multiple tabs on my web browser, some of which included high resolution videos, and yet did not lag, hang, or crash.

In terms of CPU, HP went for Ice Lake variant which is slightly inferior in comparison to XPS 13’s Comet Lake CPU when it comes to power, while HP wins in the case graphics with the upgraded Iris Plus version.

For all you video production buffs out there who survive on handbrake to transfer your videos, we have some good news. Spectre x360 took a little over 21 minutes to reduce a 4k video into 1080p resolution, standing only behind Yoga C930 which took less than 21 seconds. XPS 13 2-in-one took much longer, almost close to 25 seconds.

The SSD slot (512GB M.2 NVMe PCIe SSD) was a disappointment. When I tried to copy files worth 4.97GB onto the system, it took 16 seconds at a rate of 318.1 mbps. All the other systems were much quicker: While XPS 13 2-in-1 worked at 463 mbps (512GB SSD), the Yoga C930 operated at 339 mbps (256GB PCIe NVMe SSD), the last generation Spectre x360 at 392 mbps (M.2 PCIe NVMe) and the category average was 539 mbps. Therefore, Spectre x360 was the slowest to complete the task.   

HP Spectre x360 graphics

Though not explicit to a layman’s eye, Intel Iris Plus is a great upgrade from the commonly used UHD graphics. Spectre x360 scored a whopping 107,453 points on the 3DMark Ice Storm Unlimited, beating Yoga C930 (85,758, UHD 620), the last-gen Spectre (90,977, UHD 620) and the category average (95,845). So this is a pretty decent laptop for gaming, unless you choose crank up the graphics to Ultra. When I played Dirt 3, it ran quite well at 47 FPS and is comparable to XPS 13 2-in-1 and stands at a better level in comparison to Yoga C930 (37 FPS. The last-gen Spectre x360, surprisingly ran the game better at 56 FPS.        

HP Spectre x360 audio

As HP moved Spectre x360’s footprint, HP had to compromise on its speakers which had to move to under the laptop. These new, oddly spaced speakers blast well enough to engage a mid-sized room. Unfortunately, it lacks quality when it comes to sonic depth. So if you love to play music to dance, and wait to hear the beat drop to bring out your moves, the in-built speakers may fall short. The bass of the drums weren’t effective enough and when treble-heavy song was played, there was a disturbance of some sort, which disappeared at a lower volume.

HP Spectre x360 keyboard, touchpad and pen

The Spectre x360 13 did not change its keyboard, probably because of its amazing utility. We’ve got no complaints. The keys are large and well-spaced, so no need to worry about typos here. There was something very satisfying about pressing those large keys, and hear them go click-click. If you are a writer, who spends a lot of time typing, this laptop is your soulmate.

There can be some work done with the transparent font as it does not go to well with the silver finish. But the keys are large and attractive, and have backlighting (two levels) to assist you. My typing accuracy level has not come down.     

Coming to the touchpad, we have amazing news! The Spectre x360 13 has upgraded its drivers to Windows Precision from Synaptics. So the touchpad obeys all the gesture-shortcuts of Windows 10. The two-finger scrolling is a blessing. The 4.4 x 2.2 inches of touchpad is a good enough size and the glass surface is smooth and quick to respond. The Spectre x360 also comes with an HP Stylus Pen worth 65$ and a leather sleeve. You can move to the tablet mode and let your creative part take over.    

HP Spectre x360 battery life

The Spectre x360’s battery is a godsend! I didn’t find the need to use the charger for close to 14 hours. That was after trying to exhaust the laptop by all means- high brightness, constant web surfing with Wi-Fi connectivity, downloading files, etc. Every other model of this category falls behind: the XPS 13 2-in-1 required charging after 11 hours, the Yoga C930 was drained after 8 hours like the average premium laptop in this category (which run for about 8:40). This test also proved to us that HP didn’t compromise on anything with its compact chassis, as its predecessor was drained in 12 hours.      

HP Spectre x360 webcam

The webcam, being the smallest IR webcam, comes with severe limitations. Its lens is only 2.2 mm and takes pictures which are very unclear and pixelated. If your light isn’t very bright, don’t even bother getting into video calls unless you want to look like a grainy painting. So we suggest getting an external webcam if you have serious use of it.

You can always disable the Spectre x360’s webcam if you are worried about your privacy. Find the webcam kill switch on the right edge of your laptop. After switching it off, your laptop will need explicit permission to turn it on.     

HP Spectre x360 heat

Overheating is a slight problem with this laptop and may get worse with time. This is due to its compact chassis. After watching a long video and pointing a heat gun at the laptop’s parts, we found that the Spectre x360 13’s keyboard and touchpad stayed below 90 degrees, but the bottom panel at the back warmed up to 101 degrees. This is slightly worrying as though it didn’t heat my lap, I could feel the warmth when I picked it up.  

HP Spectre x360 software and warranty

It is safe to say that the hardware is the good part of the Spectre x360.

Dealing with its software is complicated and messy to say the least as it comes with multiple pre-installed packs. There are too many HP programs in all these apps like Documentation and Support Assist, Audio Switch and Pen Control among others. One very interesting feature in the HP Command Centre is that is allows you to speed up certain functions through optimization of your Wi-Fi.  

This laptop also brings Windows 10 Bloatware, and we suggest you to delete some of the unnecessary apps to save space. HP laptops have now started providing ExpressVPN which is an amazing service, but comes with a downside of a monthly fee.    

The Spectre x360 ships offers one-year limited warranty.

Bottom line

We are going to finish this article by reiterating what we’ve said! HP Spectre x360 13 is close to cracking the code of what perfection looks like. The model is slim, compact, and gorgeous and does not compromise on its utility to look the way it does. Spectre Spectre x360’s 10th Gen Ice Lake processors allows for great performance and battery life. The only cons include the speakers (which stand at the bottom side and cause slight disturbance at high volume) and the heating due to its compact chassis.

Despite these limitations, Spectre x360 has only two serious competitors: Dell’s XPS 13 2-in-1 and the Lenovo Yoga C940. XPS 2-in-1 wins if you want a bright display screen. But if you are looking for a compact laptop with amazing battery-life, we urge you to go for the Spectre x360.

Buy on


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