HP Spectre x360 15T Review
HP’s new high-end, high-performance 15-inch laptop, the Spectre x360 15T, takes a different approach to the high-end, high-performance laptop market. The company says that this laptop is for people who want a big screen and pretty good speed in a nice package.
The Spectre x360 15T does a great job with the “great package” part. It’s basically a bigger version of the beautiful Spectre x360 with a 13-inch screen. Both have a CNC-milled metal body and a 10-point touch IPS screen that can fold back into an A-frame or tablet shape. The most amazing thing is that the Spectre X360 15T is the same width as the 13-inch model, even though it has a much bigger screen.
HP Spectre x360 15T Specs
|Price||$1,149 / £1,199 / AU$3,399|
|CPU||Intel Core i7-1165G7|
|Graphics||Intel Iris Xe|
|Storage||512GB PCIe NVMe M.2 SSD|
|Weight||2..8 pounds (1.3kg)|
|Camera||HP TrueVision HD 1080p IR Webcam|
|Connectivity||Intel Wi-Fi 6, Bluetooth 5|
- Beautiful aesthetics
- Long-lasting battery life
- Powerful performance for regular use
- Type with ease on this roomy keyboard
- Despite being unable to match the capabilities of comparable laptops, its footprint remains enormous.
- Competitors using quad-core processors are giving dual-core a beating.
The HP Spectre x360 (2021) can be bought in different ways and at different prices. A model with an Intel Core i5-1135G7 processor, 8GB of RAM, and a 256GB SSD starts at $1,149.99 in the US. In the UK, the base model costs £1,199.99 and has an Intel Core i5-1135G7 processor, 8GB of RAM, and a 512GB SSD.
The version we’re going to review here has an Intel Core i7-1165G7 processor, 16GB of RAM, and a 512GB SSD. The price is £1,399.99 or $1,349.99. There is also a model with the same CPU and RAM that costs £1,699.99 and has a 1TB SSD and a 4K OLED screen. The Spectre x360 also comes with three different screen sizes: 13 inches, 15 inches, and 13.5 inches. The 13.5-inch screen has a larger 16:10 aspect ratio.
Ports, sound, and display
Even though the Spectre x360 15T has a small body, it still has a lot of ports. You get three USB 3.0 Type A ports, a full-sized HDMI port, a mini DisplayPort, an SD card reader, and a combo analog audio jack. HP also has a futuristic-looking USB-C port, but it doesn’t work with Thunderbolt 3.0. Instead, it only works with USB 3.1 Gen 1. Even though it’s called USB 3.1, the speed is more or less the same as USB 3.0. In terms of sound, HP put four Bang & Olufsen-tuned speakers inside the Spectre x360 15T, but they aren’t as loud as the speakers in other laptops in the same price range. I mean, they aren’t bad, but I thought the B&O name would be better. Our review unit’s screen is a 1920×1080 IPS panel that can be used with touch.
Even though the Spectre x360 15T looks good, it has a hard job ahead of it: convincing people that it’s worth giving up the speed that most companies put into their top-of-the-line 15.6-inch computers. Dell’s XPS 15, Samsung’s Book 9 Pro, and Apple’s MacBook Pro 15 are all natural rivals. They all have quad-core CPUs and separate GPUs, but the Spectre x360 15T only has a dual-core CPU and built-in graphics. How important is that show? Yes, in some tests, it’s just as important as Ron Burgundy thinks it is. Compared to other computers with two processors, the HP does pretty well. The Core i5-6200U chip is just a step down from the Core i5-6300U chip in a Surface Pro 4. But the story is different when it comes to quad-core computers. The dual-core CPUs are no match for the quad-core CPUs from Dell and Samsung. They’re also bigger and heavier.
With a high price tag, you’d expect a high-end design, and HP’s HP Spectre x360 (2021) is just that. We never doubted that it would, because the last model was one of the best-looking computers we’ve ever seen. So, it’s not a big surprise that HP’s new model is another beautiful laptop. The Spectre x360 looks pretty much the same as the previous model, which isn’t a bad thing since we liked how it looked. The Spectre x360 is made of brushed metal and comes in a variety of color choices.
The screen can flip back all the way, turning the Spectre x360 into a tablet-like device. The 360-degree hinge feels strong and reliable. The word “Spectre” is carved on the right side, which is a nice touch that adds to the general high-end feel of the Spectre x360. On the right, there is an audio-in jack and a full-size USB port. Having a full-size USB port on such a thin and light laptop is a nice touch.
On the left, there are two USB-C ports, a microSD port, and a real webcam kill switch. The second one lets you turn off the webcam when you’re not using it. This is a great tool for people who care about their privacy. It’s a big selling point, and it shows, along with the full-size USB port and microSD slot, that a thin, light laptop can have multiple links without sacrificing design. It sure beats the two USB-C ports on the MacBook Air (M1, 2020) and MacBook Pro 13-inch (M1, 2020).
The HP Spectre x360 (2021) has a long battery life, which is one of the most important ways that Intel Evo technology improves quality of life. In our own battery life test, which runs a 1080p video file at 50% brightness until the battery dies, it lasted a great 11 hours and 22 minutes. The last HP Spectre x360 did well in this test, too, with a score of 10 hours and 55 minutes.
Still, the extra half-hour is nice, and it shows that the more powerful parts haven’t made the battery life worse. So, the Spectre X360’s battery is nice and well-balanced. It can last just as long with light use as it does with average use.
This laptop can easily get you through a full workday, making it a great choice for business users who want a device with great performance and great looks that don’t need to be plugged in until they get home.