Spectre is one of the more premium (and as a result much pricier) series from HP. The premium convertible section of the notebook though is filled with many big names. And when you’re competing with such names like the Lenovo Yoga 920, Dell XPS 13, Microsoft Surface Pro or the Elitebook from the HP itself you should know one thing- that it’s gonna be interesting. To know whether this 13 incher was able to live up to its name read on.
- CPU – Intel Core i7 Dual-Core (7th Gen), 2.7 GHz
- GPU – Intel HD Graphics 620
- Memory – 8 GB DDR3
- Screen – 13.3-inch Full HD IPS (1,920 x 1,080) with 10-point touchscreen
- Storage – 256 GB SSD
- OS – Windows 10 Home edition
- Performance -It comes with an Intel Core i7 processor, 8 gigs of RAM and 256 gigs of SSD. It certainly packs some punch under its metallic hood. It could handle 10s or even 20s of open tabs in the browser while watching movies without any major issues. That’s seriously some power. And when it was compared with the competing machines in synthetic tests only Dell XPS got ahead of the Spectre by a hair with Lenovo Yoga and Surface lagging behind. And for those looking to use it for some casual gaming, I would say its integrated Intel HD Graphics 620 GPU can handle only that much load. That being said, it handled Dirt 3 pretty smoothly and made it run at ~55 fps; that’s much more than the category average of 45 fps. It comes with a lightning fast 256 GB PCIe NVMe Solid state drive. The SSD is quite fast making the machine rather snappy. It, in fact, was the fastest among the competitors including Surface, Yoga and XPS.
- Display – Spectre x360 comes with a 13.3-inch FHD display that supports both touchscreen and the Windows Ink. The colours are pretty vibrant as the panel showed an excellent 105% sRGB coverage. While that’s almost similar to what the competing Lenovo Yoga 920 (105%) and Dell XPS 13 (112%) offers Microsoft Surface Pro showed an astonishing 140% coverage. The otherwise excellent display is criticised… only for the low brightness level and reported as only good, not great. The average brightness is found at 260 nits. That’s pretty disheartening as it couldn’t even cross the category average of 280 nits, let alone surpass competing laptops like XPS 13 (365 nits) and the Surface (395 nits). The display is pretty good nonetheless and if you are fond of a higher resolution panel then you can shift your attention towards the 4K variance of Spectre x360. More on that later.
- Battery – The 3-cell 58 Wh battery lets you stay up for long enough before dying out. It stayed awake for nearly 8 hours while being used for some lesser challenging stuff like internet surfing, word processing and video streaming in medium brightness. That’s long enough to not only cover the convertible category average of 8 hours but also to outperform Surface (7:20). Although some of the competing notebooks like Dell XPS 13 (16:00) and HP Elitebook x360 (9:30) stayed sufficiently longer than Spectre.
- Price – It’s pretty expensive, no one can deny that. I mean to tout a 1K price tag for a convertible is somewhat I find a tiny bit strange. But again quality products never were cheap anyway. While it’s relatively cheaper than the far superior HP Elitebook ($1800!!) and medium ranged Lenovo Yoga 920 ($1100) and Microsoft Surface Laptop ($1500) it’s pricier than the Dell XPS 13 ($930). While XPS showed an overall better performance and battery backup Spectre x360 is nearly $70-80 costlier than the XPS. That depends completely up to you- whether you put the quality ahead of the price or the other way around. If you have some room in your budget (plenty actually, they’re expensive I mean) and can spend a bit more then you can even opt for the 4K version. It touts a 4K UHD panel for extra crisp visuals. But I don’t really recommend that for 2 reasons- firstly I’m not really into the idea of spending so much money for a 13 incher and secondly due to the extra detailed display you’d get a relatively shorter battery life.
- Crappy webcam – According to HP it comes with an FHD IR webcam. No matter what they say and claim the photos shot with it were pretty grainy and colour inaccurate. The situation worsens even further when it was shot in a rather shady area. Now you don’t really expect that from a premium product like Spectre. But almost all the notebooks nowadays come equipped with a run-of-the-mill webcam. That’s one aspect where one should not expect much from no matter the price.
It’s one hell of a 2-in-1. It looks cool, features a good display, showed an excellent battery backup and performed reliably. What can one expect more from a 2-in-1 convertible? As told earlier it’s a bit costly though for your everyday laptop. But you can stay assured that it’s worth every single penny that you spend behind it. Highly recommended.