The 2018 HP Spectre x360 is the culmination of productivity and elegance. HP made sure that when you’re in the public with it, all eyes will be on this device while giving you features that offer you a peace of mind. Design, privacy, and battery life are the key features but everything else about this device shines just as bright - sometimes even literally.
HP certainly kept up the build quality for the 2018 Spectre x360 and they somehow made it even more stylish. The chassis is made of aluminum and it has this, what they’re calling, ‘gem cut’ design that gives it angular edges - much like a gem, some would say. I also love the colours for it this year - Poseidon Blue with pale brass accents. Combining the design and colours, it gives the new HP Spectre x360 a modern look that appears more like an accessory than a laptop - which is perfect because it’s only 14mm thin and weighs around 1.31kg. Although the this year’s model is slightly thicker and heavier - 1mm and around 40g, it’s still a comfortable weight to carry around. That’s especially true if you put it in a bag because it’s understandable that a device like this to be extremely portable.
HP is doing away with the traditional rectangle shape and opted for a rectangular hexagon with two angular corners - where the power button and one of the USB-C port were shifted to. It still gives easy access and the aformentioned USB-C port allows for better cable management. Since the sides aren’t flat anymore, the fingerprint sensor is moved to the main deck. In total, the HP Spectre x360 has two USB-C ports, a microSD card slot and, thankfully on a device this thin, a USB 3 Type A and a 3.5mm audio jack! That’s certainly everything you’d need for your day-to-day.
The HP Spectre x360 is a convertible device as you might’ve guessed from the name, so it can go into all the different modes - from the standard laptop mode to Tent, Presentation or Tablet mode. It’s so easy to switch between the modes depending on what you’re doing at the time - Tent and Presentation mode is great to use with the touchscreen since it’s responsive and the gestures are convenient. Using it in Tablet mode is also a pleasant experience because of the spacious grip space from the thicker forehead and chin.
Keyboard To My Heart
The keyboards are backlit with a basic white colour with three adjustable levels of brightness - you don’t have to work in the dark but you can. The entire layout is perfect with comfortable keystrokes and satisfying clickiness. It’s all praises for the keyboard and typing experience.
The HP Spectre x360 comes with a 1-watt 1080p display and it’s one of the reasons for the device’s impressive battery life - which we will touch on later. Despite consuming less power, the screen still goes up to a respectable brightness and has good colour accuracy. It won’t deter you from watching Youtube, movies or any sort of video content - in fact, you can rest easier knowing that you can watch more with the HP Spectre x360. The display also comes with Corning Gorilla Glass for that added security against scratches and drops.
Battery for Days
To bring it back to battery life again, HP claims that this year’s model can last up to 22.5 hours! But the caveat is that specifically the base model with the 8th generation Intel i5 processor. However, even with the i7 model - mixing productivity, web browser and video streaming, we were able to pull out 13-15 hours which is still significantly longer than your average laptop. If, like me, you started the day with a full charge, you’ll have enough for work and maybe even a bit left for yourself at the end.
Performance with options
The HP Spectre x360 is running on the latest quad-core Intel Whiskey Lake processor so the standard activities like productivity, web browsing and video streaming was smooth throughout the time of us using. This device is definitely capable of doing photo editing with softwares such as Adobe Photoshop or Lightroom - it’s quite heavy on the processor so try not to have anything else running in the background and you should be fine.
As mentioned before, it comes with 2 USB-C ports which actually supports Thunderbolt 3. This means that you can connect the HP Spectre x360 to an external GPU for better graphical performance. We didn’t manage to try this feature out but this device could theoretically be a gaming device at home.
No lurkers or hackers
HP really emphasised on privacy for this 2018 model and it can be seen in some of the features it has. The one feature that’s present in the older model is the fingerprint sensor - this time they moved it closer to the bottom right corner of the keyboard. This, of course, still gives you access to Windows Hello - so faster startup time and basic security.
Next, it’s the webcam kill switch and it does exactly what it’s meant to do - it completely shuts off the webcam electronically. So you paranoid types out there don’t have to mess up your HP Spectre x360’s webcam with tape anymore.
Finally, the display is the HP’s SureView Privacy Screen - with the F1 button, you activate an overlay that reduces the viewing angle so that invisibility is still clear when you’re looking at it head-on but anyone from the sides will have trouble snooping on you. These few extra steps that HP took really makes you feel a little bit more secure in the real world and the virtual world.
As per the previous version, the speaker for the 2018 HP Spectre x360 is professionally tuned by Bang & Olufsen - which is not as gimmicky as it seems. There are 4 speakers: 2 on the keyboard deck and 2 underneath. The audio quality is extremely clean and crisp though lacks a bit of the bass. The speaker placement is actually very strategic - it ensures that you don’t lose any of that quality in the different modes you’ll be using it in because no matter which mode it is, there’s always speakers blasting upwards.
The HP Spectre x360 comes with the HP Pen and just like the touchscreen, the responsiveness is pretty much on point. The pen can use some more heft for it to be held comfortable with your hand. Furthermore, hinges aren’t stiff so it’s better to be used in Tent and Tablet mode because the display tends to sway when we tried to use to pen in Laptop and Presentation mode. Anyways, there’s no issues for the performance - those who prefer writing over typing will find this a treat to use.
HP certainly outdid themselves this year with the Spectre x360 - they kept all the features that people loved from the last model and gave this one a sleeker design, better privacy and security, and also a longer battery life. If you can afford the premium starting from MYR 5,249, then it’s hard to say ‘no’ to this device.