HP is shaking things up a little for the holiday season, making slight tweaks to their premium metal laptops, along with a couple other devices. The Spectre x360 2-in-1 and the Envy notebook are both getting new 7th generation Intel Core i processors, along with the usual steady improvements to battery life.
The Spectre x360, HP’s 2-in-1 convertible with a 360-degree hinge, will now be thinner and lighter, with a bit more in the way of battery life. As of now, only the 13.3″ model is getting updated. Along with the new 7th generation Intel Core i processor comes improved integrated graphics, but everything else looks the same — up to 16 GB of RAM, a standard 1080p display, and a 512 GB PCIe NVMe M.2 SSD (up to 1 TB). The 1080p IR webcam has a wide-angle lens and can be used to sign onto the PC using Windows Hello. On the edges, you’ll find two USB Type-C Thunderbolt 3 ports, a MicroSD card slot, and one more familiar Type-A port, for use with your existing accessories and peripherals.
Physically, the Spectre x360 looks similar to the previous generation, but with much thinner bezels and a thinner frame overall. The refreshed model is now 13.8 mm thick and weighs 2.85 pounds, compared to 3.2 pounds for the previous model. There are now four Bang & Olufsen speakers — two forward-firing and two on the bottom. HP has also managed to squeeze in two fans for cooling.
Battery life should now be a little under 15 hours, compared to the 12.5 hours quoted for the previous generation. Part of that is due to the larger 57.8-watt battery, but the improved efficiency of the 7th generation Core i processors also helps. The Spectre x360 also has HP Fast Charge, which should get it back to 90 percent in 90 minutes of charging.
HP is also upgrading their premium 13.3″ Envy notebook. The Envy will also get an upgrade to 7th generation Intel Core i5 or i7 processors, along with their new integrated graphics. Like the Spectre x360, the Envy can be configured with up to 16 GB of RAM and up to a 1 TB PCIe NVMe M.2 SSD. It’ll also still come standard with a 1080p display, although this one is an edge-to-edge glass display. HP has also confirmed that there will be a 3200 x 1800 resolution option. It’ll also have a 1080p webcam, although it sounds like it won’t support Windows Hello. The Envy is also heavier on legacy ports, having two USB Type-A 3.0 ports (one with pass-through charging) and one USB Type-C port.
This year’s Envy 13 is actually heavier and thicker than the previous generation, but battery life has been improved. The Envy 13 is now 14 mm thick and 3.15 pounds, compared to 13 mm thick and 3.0 pounds last time, but battery life is now 14 hours compared to the 10 quoted for the previous generation. The same HP Fast Charge technology in the Spectre x360 is here, too, charging up to 90 percent in 90 minutes. The laptop also has two Bang & Olufsen-tuned speakers and HP Audio Boost technology for sound amplification.
Meanwhile, HP is also making their 27″ Envy AIO much thinner by moving the hardware into the base. It’s still kitted out for entertainment, with a 3200 x 1800 resolution display and a Bang & Olufsen sound system including four speakers and a soundbar. It’ll still only have a 6th generation Intel Core i5 or i7 processor with an Nvidia GTX 950M graphics processor, along with anywhere between a 256 GB SSD and a 2 TB HDD for storage. Ports include one USB Type-C port, HDMI-in, and HDMI-out. The HP Envy 27 is a 4k IPS display with AMD FreeSync support and over 99 percent sRGB color accuracy. It’ll have a DisplayPort, an HDMI port, and a USB Type-C port.
If you’ve been holding out on grabbing an HP machine for a holiday gift (for someone else or yourself), it’s a good news/bad news thing — the refreshed devices are a little improved, but a little more costly, too. The new Spectre x360 will be available on October 12 starting at $1,050, while the new Envy 13 will be available on October 26 for $850. The Envy AIO 27 will be available sometime this month starting at $1,300. The Envy 27 display will come much later on December 4 for $500.