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HP Spectre x360 (2022) review
The hp spectre x360 (2022) impresses but falls short of true greatness.
Though the HP Spectre x360 gives a sense of luxury far past its 2-in-1 moniker, with its stunning chassis and OLED screen plus an excellent keyboard, issues with the touchpad stop it from being a truly excellent laptop.
The OLED screen is lovely
Comes with a tablet pen
Good battery life
Touchpad has sensitivity issues
Can get too expensive with the OLED screen
Availability outside the US is rough
Why you can trust TechRadar We spend hours testing every product or service we review, so you can be sure you’re buying the best. Find out more about how we test.
- Two minute review
- Price & availability
- Battery life
- Should you buy it?
- Report card
HP Spectre x360 (2022): Two minute review
As far as 2-in-1 laptops go, the HP Spectre x360 (2022) is a pretty good one. It’s sleek with gorgeous brass accents that make it stand out. The chassis is light yet well-made and solid, and its small size and lightweight design ensure easy portability.
Its pricing starts at $1199.99 (around £1,020 / AU$1,743) for a Core i5-1235U, which is consistent with many of the best 2-in-1 laptops , though you can upgrade to a Core i7-1235U and either 16GB or 32GB of memory. The big problem is availability, as it doesn’t seem to be readily available in regions like the UK or Australia.
The Spectre x360 boasts beautiful color choices and a stunning design: two of the color options feature accents that perfectly complement the colors and put the Spectre x360 in a class of its own among the best HP laptops on the market. Putting two of the ports on the top corners provides more options while pairing well with the aesthetics.
Then there’s the gorgeous OLED screen that enhances any images, movies, or games on its display. And giving you plenty of screen real estate are the ultra-thin bezels, ensuring you get your money’s worth on that 13.5-inch screen.
The keyboard feels just as luxurious as the screen, chassis and bezel look, with wide keys spaced far enough apart that typos aren’t an issue. What is an issue is the touchpad, its satiny feel belying sensitivity issues that make using it a chore.
The webcam is a 720p resolution that’s pretty ubiquitous among even the best laptops , so that’s nothing to write home about. However, the preinstalled HP Enhanced Lighting app can be used to adjust the lighting to improve picture quality, so it’s a step up from other non-HD cameras. Ventilation is decent too, meaning no hot laps as you burn through that eight-hour battery during your work day.
If you want a 2-in-1 that can handle the best PC games as well as a spreadsheet, the Spectre x360 (2022) can manage when it comes to low and mid-range titles. For instance, it ate Civilization VI for breakfast, running at well over 100 FPS at its lowest settings. Don’t expect that for Cyberpunk 2077 or Dirtbike, of course, but for most casual players this laptop is a boon. If you want something more powerful on the gaming side of things, check out our list of the best gaming laptops or the best cheap gaming laptops if you're on a tighter budget.
Thankfully, the ventilation is solid, so your machine won’t get past slightly warm, whether working or gaming, even when taking advantage of a battery that lasts at least eight hours. Sound quality is also solid, though with an average ability to handle bass. Its Bang & Olufsen Audio Control software does allow for a surprisingly robust noise cancellation, which should make anyone on voice calls very happy.
HP Spectre x360 (2022): Price and availability
- How much does it cost? Up to $1,200 (£1,020 / AU$1,743)
- When is it out? It is available now
- Where can you get it? You can get it in the US
Here is the HP Spectre x360 2022 configuration sent to TechRadar for review:
CPU : Intel Core i7-1255U Graphics : Intel Iris Xe Graphics RAM : 16 GB LPDDR4X Screen : 13.5-inch 3K2K UWVA OLED Display Storage : 1TB Optical drive : None Ports : 1 USB 3.1 Type A, 2 Thunderbolt 4, 1 SD Card reader, 1 audio jack Connectivity : Wi-Fi 6E AX211 (2x2) and Bluetooth 5.2 combo Camera : 720p Weight : 2.95 pounds Size : 11.75 x 8.67 x 0.67 inches (TK x TK x TK cm; W x D x H)
The HP Spectre x360 (2022) is available now in the US. Starting price is $1199.99 (around £1,020 / AU$1,743) and that comes with an Intel Core i5-1235U.
The price can go as high as $1749.99 (around £1,484 / AU$2,533) for an Intel Core i7-1255U, which also includes the OLED screen. It’s harder to justify Ultrabook pricing for this machine, however, when it doesn’t boast the same spec chops as that one.
Like many 2-in-1 models, this one suffers from being difficult to find outside the US, including in Australia and the UK. Within the US you can find it in popular retailers including Amazon and Best Buy, as well as the official HP site. Throw in one of the HP promo codes out there and you could save more cash.
- Value: 3 / 5
HP Spectre x360 (2022): Design
- Gorgeous chassis
- Great OLED screen if you upgrade
- Terrible touchpad
The two standout colors for the HP Spectre x360 are Nocturne Blue and Nightfall Black, which are paired with lovely celestial blue and pale brass accents, respectively. There’s also the default Natural Silver color option which is pretty but not as striking as the other two options.
The chassis is somewhat wedge-like but retains a certain sleekness due to not fully leaning into the design. And thanks to the 13.5-inch screen size and downright svelte 3lbs weight, it makes for an incredibly portable laptop that can be carried with ease in any medium-sized or larger bag.
It features ultra-thin bezels that complement the stunning OLED screen that, combined with the glamorous chassis, goes a long way in making this laptop feel way more premium than its actual market. What’s also clever is the x360 hiding two extra ports, an audio jack and a USB Type-C, on the top corners. This bumps up the port selection from mediocre to decent. However, there should still be more than one USB Type-A port and an HDMI port as well.
The keyboard is satisfying, with wide keys that have enough space between them to prevent typos. The fingerprint reader is located where the second Function key is on the right side, a much better place than the more common location near or on the power button. The touchpad is a different story. It has a nice feel to it, almost luxurious, but it comes with major responsiveness issues, such as the multi-finger gesture for highlighting text or dragging a tab around. We were forced to use a mouse because the sensitivity issues became too pervasive.
It also comes with a rechargeable MPP2.0 Tilt Pen, which is pretty high quality, though it’s no Lenovo Precision Pen 2. The Tilt Pen is responsive and precise, making it a good starting pen for creatives. It’s rechargeable rather than battery-operated, so you’ll need to connect it to your laptop to recharge.
- Design: 3.5 / 5
HP Spectre x360 (2022): Performance
- All-round performance is nearly flawless
- Excellent stylus out of the box
After testing with our normal suite of benchmarks, we found that the HP Spectre x360 scores close to most other 2-in-1 laptops. Considering that this laptop is either rocking the i5 or i7 processor, it makes sense that it can run work programs, handle multiple browser tabs, and even play plenty of low and mid-range video games with no issues.
Here's how the HP Spectre x360 performed in our suite of benchmark tests:
3DMark : Night Raid: 15,316; Fire Strike: 4,534; Time Spy: 1,688 Cinebench R23 Multi-core : 6,693 points GeekBench 5 : 1,703 (single-core); 7,382 (multi-core) PCMark 10 (Home Test) : 5,228 points Battery Life (TechRadar movie test): 8 hours and 14 minutes
Although the touchpad has severe performance issues once you attach a mouse to the laptop, it becomes almost a non-issue in your home office. Yet that hurts its portability factor since now you need to carry a mouse and find a suitable surface to use it on or bring your own mouse pad.
Testing it in daily use, we found no point in which the laptop falters. Its performance is incredibly consistent, with no real hiccups while running anything from voice calls to watching live streams to movie streaming. This is aided by its great ventilation system, which can be modified under the HP Command Center app, allowing for manual cooling fan control, as well as network traffic optimization through the Performance mode option.
The laptop works well with its stylus pen, which is itself quite good. Fully charging it takes no time at all and there’s a built-in USB Type-C port in the pen that makes this an incredibly simple experience. The LED light on the top of the pen indicates its charge status for extra convenience and you can attach the pen to the right bezel to keep it from getting lost. The one negative is the HP Pen Control app, which only allows you to configure what the buttons on the pen do. There’s no charge percentage information on it either. It’s refreshing to see a laptop come with a high-quality pen, unlike the LG Gram 16 2-in-1’s mediocre stylus.
- Performance: 4.5 / 5
HP Spectre x360 (2022): Battery life
- Great battery life
- Charges very fast
With an average battery life of eight hours, the HP Spectre x360 is a solid choice for those looking for a machine that will go the distance for an entire workday. Said battery also charges fast, reaching at least 80% capacity in about an hour.
It's true that 2-in-1 laptops tend to run the gambit of battery life, with some lasting even longer than the x360 and others dying in about four hours. We’ve found that in day-to-day use the battery life can consistently be even higher than testing suggests.
- Battery Life: 4 / 5
Should you buy an HP Spectre x360?
Buy it if....
You want a lightweight work machine
At 13-inches and 3lbs, the HP Spectre x360 is extremely portable and can fit into nearly any medium-sized bag with ease.
You want a gorgeous chassis
While the silver one is pretty, the other two variants featuring complementary color highlights are particularly lovely.
You want to upgrade to an OLED screen
The OLED screen version of this laptop is easily the best one, as it makes this 2-in-1 stand out way more than other laptops in the same market.
Don't buy it if...
You need a functional touchpad
This touchpad has easily the worst sensitivity we’ve seen in a laptop in quite some time, to the point where it’s more prudent to simply use a separate mouse.
You need a budget machine
While the starting pricing isn’t too bad, the OLED and general spec upgrades can jack up the costs to approach Ultrabook territory.
Dell Inspiron 16 2-in-1 (2022)
A similar version of the Dell Inspiron 14 with a larger screen, this feels like a more premium version of the former. It sports a solid webcam, has an excellent battery life, and performs well in every field. The only detractors are its weight and lack of tablet pen.
Check out our Dell Inspiron 16 2-in-1 (2022) review
Apple MacBook Air (M2, 2022)
The follow-up to one of the best laptops ever released, the 2022 MacBook Air is svelte and sleek with a larger screen and the same outstanding battery life. While it doesn’t quite beat out its predecessor, it’s still a solid laptop though its steeper price tag is disappointing.
Check out our Apple MacBook Air (M2, 2022) review
HP Elite Dragonfly G2
This is a more expensive option as it’s a 2-in-1 device. It’s stylish, sleek, has better battery life than the Dell Inspiron 14 2-in-1, and features a 4K display. If you’re willing to pay the extra money, there are very few choices that are better.
Check out our HP Elite Dragonfly G2 review
HP Spectre x360 (2022) Report card
- First reviewed October 2022
How We Test
We pride ourselves on our independence and our rigorous review-testing process, offering up long-term attention to the products we review and making sure our reviews are updated and maintained - regardless of when a device was released, if you can still buy it, it's on our radar.
Read more about how we test
Named by the CTA as a CES 2023 Media Trailblazer, Allisa is a Computing Staff Writer who covers breaking news and rumors in the computing industry, as well as reviews, hands-on previews, featured articles, and the latest deals and trends. In her spare time you can find her chatting it up on her two podcasts, Megaten Marathon and Combo Chain, as well as playing any JRPGs she can get her hands on.
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HP Spectre x360 13.5-inch (2022) review
An elegant style personified with enough performance to excite most on-the-go business users.
Laptop Mag Verdict
Excellent build quality meets stylish design with a dash of performance that makes the HP Spectre x360 13.5 a 2-in-1 laptop champ, but it comes with a steep price tag.
Stunning 3:2 aspect ratio OLED touch screen
Elegant, sturdy design
All-day battery life
Lack of discrete GPU option
Why you can trust Laptop Mag Our expert reviewers spend hours testing and comparing products and services so you can choose the best for you. Find out more about how we test .
Price: $1,149.99 starting price, $1,749.99 as tested
CPU: Intel Core i7-1255U processor
GPU: Intel Iris XE
Storage: 1TB SSD
Display: 13.5-inch OLED (3000 x 2000)
Size: 11.7 x 8.7 x 0.67 inches
Weight: 3.01 pounds
The latest edition of the HP Spectre x360 13.5 easily earns our Editors' Choice badge due to it being the premium 2-in-1 laptop to beat. Its elegant, sturdy design, boasting a fine chrome diamond cut look, belongs on a runway. However, like the latest Parisian fashion, it will cost you a pretty penny.
The Spectre x360 13.5 features solid performance thanks to its strong 12th Gen Intel Core i7 processor, and while it may not dish out the fastest processing speeds we’ve tested, it still delivers superb document-pushing power. Even better, its dazzling OLED touchscreen with a 3:2 aspect ratio is wonderful to devour video content on. It easily takes a spot in our list of best 2-in-1 laptops , and if high style and substance are your thing, you’ll want to keep reading.
HP Spectre x360 13.5 (2022) price and configurations
The HP Spectre x360 13.5 we tested ($1,749.99) comes with a 12th Gen Intel Core i7-1255U CPU, integrated Intel Iris Xe Graphics, 16GB of RAM, a 1TB SSD, and a 13.5-inch, 3000 x 2000-pixel OLED touchscreen display with a 3:2 aspect ratio that presents itself much larger than it actually is while working on documents or viewing content.
The base model Spectre x360 13.5 starts at $1,149.99 and features an Intel Core i5-1235U CPU, 8GB of RAM, integrated Iris Xe Graphics, 512GB of SSD storage, and a 13.5-inch WUXGA+ (1920 x 1280) display.
The next model up is packed with an Intel Core i7-1255U CPU, 16GB of RAM, 512GB of storage, Intel Iris Xe Graphics, and a 13.5-inch WUXGA+ (1920 x 1280) display that will set you back $1,459.99.
The next x360 13.5model is priced at $1,639.99; it will arrive with an Intel Core i7-1255U CPU, 32GB of RAM, 1TB of SSD storage, Intel Iris Xe Graphics, and a 13.5-inch WUXGA+ (1920 x 1280) display. Options are nice, but I would have liked a configuration with a discrete graphics option.
HP Spectre x360 13.5 (2022) design
The HP Spectre x360 14 features a lovely Nightfall black color with pale brass contrasting accents and diagonal-cut rear corners that hold easily accessible ports, making it functional and stylish.
The 360-degree hinges are sturdy and have a little curvature that adds to the overall design of the unit. Every aspect of the Spectre is well thought out, even HP’s chromed-out logo appears to be floating in a sea of metal that feels like it was designed by an artisan blacksmith.
As a 2-in-1 laptop, the Spectre x360 13.5 can be used as a tablet by folding the display 360 degrees behind its normal closed position. If you wish, you can also stand the unit upside down in “tent” mode or hold it up vertically. HP got it right and included a stylus that feels good in the hand and is easy to use. HP also smartly included a soft sleeve for the laptop with a pen holder because nothing is worse than losing your stylus.
The HP Spectre x360 measures 11.7 x 8.7 x 0.67 inches and weighs 3.01 pounds. It may not be the thinnest or lightest 2-in-1 on the market, but its premium design and build quality set it apart from the rest of the pack as every tiny detail has been taken into consideration.
In comparison, the Dell XPS 13 OLED measures 11.6 x 7.8 x 0.6 inches and weighs 2.8 pounds. Our other comparison laptops, the ThinkBook 14 S, measures 12.6 x 8.5 x 0.67 and weighs 3.3 pounds, with the Lenovo Yoga 9i weighing 3.1 pounds and measuring 12.5 x 9.06 x 0.6 inches.
HP Spectre x360 13.5 (2022) ports
The Spectre is a little light on ports with only four inputs and an audio jack, which is fine unless you’re in need of extra connectivity.
On the left, you’ll find a USB-Type A port and a 3.5mm combo audio jack that’s neatly melded into the laptop’s angled edge.
On the right are two Thunderbolt 4 ports and a USB-A port. For those in need of extra ports, the best docking stations will do the trick.
HP Spectre x360 13.5 (2022) security
To cover your security needs, HP includes a fingerprint reader, microphone mute button, and webcam shutter on the Spectre x360 13.5, and the webcam has even more advanced security features. There is HP's GlamCam software, which can detect if a person is looking over your shoulder and will alert you or blur the entire screen. If you leave or get up from your laptop, the webcam can lock the laptop and will wake it up when you come back using the Windows Hello facial recognition login feature. The Spectre also comes with HP Sure View Reflect, which darkens up to 95% of the light coming from your screen to prevent people from peeking at it from the side.
HP Spectre x360 13.5 (2022) display
The HP Spectre x360 13.5’s 13.5-inch, 3000 x 2000-pixel resolution OLED touchscreen display is more vivid, bright, colorful, and crisper than deep-fried rolled tacos. That crispy-clean image shone through while I was editing documents in Google Workspace, with the white backgrounds popping against the black texts. The 3:2 aspect ratio is really helpful when working on docs and makes the 13.5-inch display look much larger than it is.
I watched Marvel’s She-Hulk on Disney Plus, and the green-hued attorney at law looked resplendent. The Spectre’s display did an excellent job at rendering the color and capturing the slight tonal CGI effects that created natural shading to define musculature.
We measured the Spectre's display with a colorimeter, and it covered 87.7% of the DCI-P3 color gamut , which fell a smidge below the mainstream laptop average of 89.7%. It bested the Dell XPS 13 (84.2%) and the Lenovo ThinkBook 14 S Yoga (76.2%), but like the rest, was left in the dust by (140.1%) Lenovo’s Yoga 9i Gen 7 .
The Spectre x360 averaged 355 nits of brightness during testing, which fell below the 373-nit average. The Dell XPS 13 Plus came closest at 366 nits of brightness, with the Yoga 9i following with an average brightness of 352 nits. The ThinkBook 14 S Yoga closed us out with an average of 313 nits of brightness.
HP Spectre x360 13.5 (2022) stylus
The Spectre x360 comes with HP's rechargeable MPP 2.0 Tilt Pen, which is a 5.5-inch stylus with two buttons and a USB-C port for charging. The stylus works very well when signing documents or using it to sketch. I found it very handy when dealing with multiple PDF documents that needed signing. I also used it to sketch and color while relaxing in my backyard. The pen clings magnetically to the side of the screen, and there’s a special slot for it in the supplied laptop sleeve.
HP Spectre x360 13.5 (2022) audio
The Spectre x360 13.5 arrives with quad bottom-firing Bang & Olufsen speakers that work in tandem with B&O audio controls that deliver a nice audio experience with both depth and clarity. The Bang & Olufsen Audio Control software provides movie, music, voice presets an equalizer, and microphone noise cancellation for multiple or single speakers. Overall, it’s a very solid performing audio experience, with the Spectre x360 13.5 delivering quality audio output and solid mic performance during video chats.
That said, I fired up Spotify and listened to Meg Thee Stallion’s “Her.” The baseline hit immediately, and the Spectre’s speakers do a nice job of delivering rich, defined audio with clearly discernible bass, mids, and highs. It doesn’t thump like a boombox, but the audio experience is excellent for a tiny laptop. I am always surprised when laptop makers can deliver solid bass in such a slim form factor.
I then listened to System of Down’s “Toxicity,” and the vocals were reproduced with clarity and power as the driving guitar blasted into the audio space with rage god power that brings me absolute joy. The HP Spectre x360 13.5 does a fine job of reproducing audio crisply without distortion, regardless of the volume, and in my case, it’s always pushed to 100%. The Spectre reproduced the grinding guitar and lead singer Serj Tankian’s wide-ranging potent vocals with exuberant precision.
HP Spectre x360 13.5 (2022) keyboard and touchpad
The keyboard layout on the Spectre x360 13.5 is excellent, with good travel between keys that even a person like myself with NFL linebacker-sized hands can enjoy. The brightly backlit keyboard had me blasting away at a solid 87 words per minute during the 10FastFingers.com test while averaging 93% accuracy. My normal averages are 88 wpm with 91% accuracy, so I was within my normal range.
The Spectre’s touchpad is centrally located right beneath the keyboard and features chrome-like, pale brass accents, which make the 4.9 x 3.1 touchpad stand out. The x360’s touchpad is a perfect size and very clicky, responding quickly to Windows 11 gestures , including two-finger scrolling and pinch-to-zoom.
HP Spectre x360 13.5 2-in-1 performance
The HP Spectre x360 comes with a 12th Gen Intel Core i7-1255U CPU , 16GB of RAM , and a 1TB SSD . These are solid specs and I wanted to see how it handled multitasking. I tried to bog it down with 40 tabs in Google Chrome , five of which played YouTube videos simultaneously. I then launched some Google Docs , one for images and the other for a PDF I wanted to edit. The silent whir of the fans was the only sign that indicated the x360 14 was putting in work.
In our Geekbench 5.4 overall performance test, the x360 14 scored 7,243, which is above the mainstream laptop average of 5,607. However, the Dell XPS 13 Plus, packed with an Intel Core i7-1280P CPU, surpassed it with a score of 10,621. The Lenovo Yoga 9i Gen 7 (Intel Core i7-1260P CPU) came in at 7,150 , followed by the Lenovo ThinkBook 14 S Yoga (Intel Core i7-1165G7 CPU) with a score of 4,865. .
On the Handbrake video transcoding test, which tests how fast a laptop can convert a 4K video to 1080p resolution, the Spectre took 10 minutes and 33 seconds. This easily surpassed the mainstream laptop average of 15:42. It was slower than the XPS 13 Plus,which recorded a still-speedy 8:17, and outpaced both the Yoga 9i’s 12:18 and the ThinkBook 14 S which finished in 16:28.
The x360 13.5's 1TB SSD fared nicely in our file-transfer test. It duplicated a 25GB multimedia file in 19.7 seconds at a rate of 1,363.8 megabytes per second. This surpassed the mainstream laptop average of 660.9 Mbps but places the Spectre behind the Yoga 9i (1TB SSD, 1,506.89 Mbps) and the XPS (512GB SSD, 1,502.1 Mbps), but stayed ahead of the ThinkBook (512GB SSD, 886.35 Mbps).
HP Spectre x360 13.5 2-in-1 graphics
The HPSpectre x360 13.5, like its competitors, comes with integrated Intel Iris Xe graphics. We tested the GPU using Sid Meier’s Civilization VI benchmark in 1080p HD. The Spectre scored 29 frames per second, which is just a tick above the mainstream average of 27 fps and leading our test group. The Lenovo Yoga 9i Gen 7 and Dell XPS 13 Plus both averaged 23 fps, while the Lenovo ThinkBook 14 S Yoga scored a disappointing17 fps.
We put the x360 through the Time Spy benchmark and it tallied 1,691, which is above the mainstream average of 1,474. The Dell XPS 13 led our group with a score of 1,839, followed by the Yoga 91 at 1,425 and the ThinkBook 14 S at1,301.
HP Spectre x360 13.5 (2022) battery life
When it comes to battery life, the HP Spectre x360 13.5 can deliver a full day’s charge for on-the-go users who may sometimes forget the charger at home or in the office.
On the Laptop Mag battery test , which involves continuous web surfing over Wi-Fi at 150 nits of brightness, the x360 lasted 10 hours and 12 minutes, surpassing the mainstream laptop average of 9 hours and 56 minutes. The x360 led in this category, with the ThinkBook 14 S sliding into the second position lasting 9 hours and 55 minutes, followed by the Yoga 9i, which lasted 8 hours and 6 minutes. The Dell XPS 13 OLED closed us out, recording 7 hours and 35 minutes of battery life.
HP Spectre x360 13.5 (2022) heat
During our heat test, which involves playing a 15-minute, 1080p video, the Spectre x360 13.5’s underside reached 93.5 degrees Fahrenheit, which is a bit toasty, but not dangerously so. The keyboard hit 89.5 degrees, and the touchpad was a cool 80 degrees. The keys and touchpad temperatures are below our 95-degree comfort threshold, so you won’t ever feel uncomfortable using the x360 14 on your lap.
HP Spectre x360 13.5 2-in-1 webcam
A HP True Vision 5-megapixel webcam produces crisp, well-lit, and color-accurate selfies and videos. The Spectre’s webcam offers three high-resolution aspect ratios: 16:9 (2,560 by 1,440 pixels), 4:3 (2,560 by 1,920), or 3:2 (2,560 by 1,706), while also capturing 1080p videos at 30 fps. A key at the top row enables and disables the camera and is indicated by an LED light within the key. The x360’s webcam offers backlighting correction, an appearance filter to remove spots and blemishes, and solid autofocus that follows your movements if you choose to move around. There is also an HP Enhanced Lighting app, which mimics the effect of a ring light on the screen. The Spectre’s webcam performed extremely well and is one of my favorite built-in webcam experiences to date, thanks to its accurate colors, low-light performance, and fairly speedy autofocus.
If you want a better-performing webcam, check out our best external webcams page .
HP Spectre x360 13.5 2-in-1 software and warranty
The HP Spectre x360 13.5 comes with the Windows 11 Pro and the acceptable amount of bloatware , including Netflix , Spotify, and Microsoft Solitaire collection. There is a Disney Plus app and HP’s Command Central app. My favorite application that comes with the Spectre is HP’s Quickdrop, which allows you to speedily transfer files back and forth between your phone. It is one of the best apps out there.
The HP Spectre x360 13.5 2-in-1 comes with a one-year limited warranty. To see how HP fared in our annual special reports, including Tech Support Showdown and Best and Worst Brands .
The HP Spectre x360 13.5 is kind of the ultimate 2-in-1 laptop. It’s a little pricey, but the Spectre’s premium build quality, solid performance, and feature set allow for that price. With a beautiful 3:2 aspect ratio display, an excellent webcam, and a stylish, cutting-edge design, on-the-go power users that require 2-in-1 flexibility will happily pay for it. HP does an excellent job of knowing who it’s marketing to, and when you add everything up, the Spectre x360 13.5, once again, is a win for the laptop OEM.
Mark has spent 20 years headlining comedy shows around the country and made appearances on ABC, MTV, Comedy Central, Howard Stern, Food Network, and Sirius XM Radio. He has written about every topic imaginable, from dating, family, politics, social issues, and tech. He wrote his first tech articles for the now-defunct Dads On Tech 10 years ago, and his passion for combining humor and tech has grown under the tutelage of the Laptop Mag team. His penchant for tearing things down and rebuilding them did not make Mark popular at home, however, when he got his hands on the legendary Commodore 64, his passion for all things tech deepened. These days, when he is not filming, editing footage, tinkering with cameras and laptops, or on stage, he can be found at his desk snacking, writing about everything tech, new jokes, or scripts he dreams of filming.
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By Momo Tabari 18 September 2023
HP Spectre x360 14 2-in-1 (2022) Review
Hp’s spectre x360 14 is one of the best 2-in-1 laptops out there.
Updated July 10, 2023
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About the HP Spectre x360 14 2-in-1
What we like, what we don’t like, should you buy the hp spectre x360 14 2-in-1, related content.
Excellent stylus included
Responsive touchscreen display
Comfortable keyboard and trackpad
OK battery life
Performance could be better
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Here are the specs of the laptop we tested:
- Processor: Intel Core i7-1255U
- Graphics: Integrated
- Storage: 1TB SSD
- Display: 3000 x 2000p resolution, 400 nits brightness, 100% P3 gamut
- Ports: 2 x USB-C Thunderbolt 4, 1 x USB-A, 1 x Headphone jack
- Wireless connectivity: Wi-Fi 6E, Bluetooth 5.2
- Camera: 1080p webcam
- Accessories: HP Rechargeable MPP2.0 Tilt Pen, Carry case
- Battery: 66Whr lithium‑polymer battery
- Weight: 3.0 pounds
- Size: 11.73 x 8.68 x 0.67 inches
- Warranty: 1-year limited warranty
It retails for $1,549 and comes in one other configuration, which has an Intel Core i5-1235U processor, 8GB of memory, 512GB of SSD storage, and a 1920 x 1280p display.
It is certainly a great choice for digital artists.
A lot of laptops lately have been pushing for sharper, edgier designs, but the Spectre 14 takes the opposite approach. Its edges and corners are rounded and chamfered, making it comfortable to lay my wrists on the laptop. The rear two corners are cut at 45-degree angles and have ports on them. There’s no other laptop that quite looks like the Spectre, and the all-metal chassis is sleek, thin, and rigid as a laptop should be. While it’s not fingerprint-proof, its matte black surface is more resistant to them than most laptops.
Additionally, the Spectre 14 figured out how to include a USB-A port by having an expandable ledge for peripherals while keeping the laptop as thin as possible. (Most ultra-thin notebooks have removed the USB-A port altogether.) The audio jack lives on the rear left corner, and two USB-C ports populate the right corner and right side. The display’s right side is also magnetized so the included stylus can snap onto the Spectre 14, iPad-style.
The keyboard, trackpad, and ergonomics are phenomenal
The Spectre and the Envy have historically had amazing keyboards and trackpads, and this generation is no exception. The keyboard is springy with a big kick to it, needing just the right amount of pressure to actuate to prevent accidental keystrokes without wearing out your fingers. Despite the small chassis, the keys themselves don’t feel small, but they are a bit shallow to keep the profile down.
Meanwhile, the trackpad is massive, smooth, and highly responsive. If you’re used to MacBook trackpads, you’ll feel right at home on the hand-sized canvas (yes, it’s bigger than my hand).
Its convertible form factor is well executed, with sturdy hinges that can stay put at any angle. You can use it normally, tented, or as a tablet. The laptop has a display with a 4:3 ratio, and that extra width makes it less awkward to hold the laptop vertically in tablet mode.
Its toucscreen plays well with its stylus
For its dimensions, you'll be getting a high quality machine.
The display colors aren’t too shabby, either
The HP Spectre 14 is a treat to work with. Its full P3 color gamut and excellent contrast on its OLED display are perfect for color-accurate work on the go. It’s not especially bright at 370 nits, but its adaptive display temperature feature keeps it comfortable to look at without sacrificing the accuracy too much compared to generic night light settings.
Since it’s a 4:3 display, this relatively small laptop has a lot of desktop space to work with. Its 3000 x 2000 resolution may be unusual, but it keeps everything looking sharp. Its brightness holds it back from being one of the best laptop displays, as HDR content won’t be as vivid, but for any other content, it looks fantastic.
Audio is loud and balanced
As far as laptops go, the HP Spectre 14 nails its sound. The bass on this thing is impressive, with a strong, clear output that’s a whole lot of fun for bassheads. (Its reverberation may be a bit much for audiophiles.) Meanwhile, the treble and mids are confident and full-bodied, adding to the sum of the audio to make a rich, dark sound signature. It sounds more like a TV than it does a laptop.
If you like to share your laptop audio for things like films or music, you’ll be glad to know the Spectre can get loud . At max volume, I played a variety of videos to judge its sound quality: an audio benchmark video, white noise videos, and trending music videos. Its sound averaged about 72 decibels from an arm’s length away—that’s as loud as traffic at a busy intersection (and on par with the MacBook Air).
More importantly, the audio is still clear and free of distortion at high volumes. It’s certainly not a flat sound signature by default, but because of its excellent range, it’ll sound great regardless of your preferences. The Spectre 14 has some of the best sounds out there for laptop speakers.
Low power draw holds back performance
You might want to turn on power-saving mode often if you want the battery life to last.
Compared to other premium 2-in-1s, the Spectre 14 feels underwhelming. While its benchmark scores aren’t wimpy, the competition is up to 40% faster without costing more money or sacrificing battery life.
The Spectre’s Intel Core i7-1255U processor isn’t necessarily designed for raw power. At a max power draw of 55 Watts, performance in heavy-duty tasks like sorting a multi-thousand-row Excel sheet or rendering a simple 3D modeling scene will be slower than if you used a processor with a higher max power draw. On the other hand, its base power draw is just 15W, so you’re not burning extra power just writing a Word doc.
Intel caps power draw on its U-line processors so they draw less power than P-line processors (Intel’s other line of efficient mobile processors). If it draws less power, then the laptop will have longer battery life. Batteries are often measured in Watt-hours for this reason—a 100Wh battery will deplete much more quickly if your processor is running a game at 100W of power than if it were running 20W while surfing the web.
However, the Core i7-1255U could be considered too conservative with its power draw. The Intel Core i7-1260P can draw up to 64W and still shows similar battery life in laptops like the Lenovo Yoga 9i. If a processor’s tuned properly, a very powerful processor can still get good battery life for simple tasks, and Intel’s P-line is efficient in that regard.
Its battery life isn’t anything to brag about
the HP Spectre 14’s seven hours and 37 minutes of battery life won’t turn a lot of heads. To test battery life, we simulate an average day of tasks for productivity users by setting brightness to 200 nits (enough for a well-lit office) and rotating through 20 websites from a full battery until it shuts off. If you’re doing anything more strenuous, such as editing pictures in Photoshop, you can expect the battery to deplete faster.
The HP Spectre 14 is about on par with other 2-in-1s of this gen, such as the Lenovo Yoga 9i which has a battery life of six hours and 51 minutes. It’s also a downgrade from last generation’s HP Spectre, which had a nine-hour battery life. There are some traditional laptops with more battery life still (looking at you, MacBook Air, and your 15-hour battery life), but you will have to give up the convenience of a 2-in-1.
Its port situation is bizarre
Usually, laptops suffer from a lack of ports. The HP Spectre has an OK amount of ports (one USB-A port, two Thunderbolt 4 USB-C ports, and a headphone jack), but what truly stands out is where those ports are located.
On the chamfered rear corners of the chassis, there is one USB-C port and a headphone jack. It’s a cool concept, but in practice, it’s easy to yank at attached cables and risk damaging the port. Be mindful of any cables you keep connected to the Spectre 14 just in case.
Yes, it’s a phenomenal laptop
Despite some competition for more niched features, this is still well worth the price for an all-rounder laptop.
Prices were accurate at the time this article was published but may change over time.
Meet the tester
Adrien is the PC staff writer for Reviewed with over 4 years of experience covering laptops, desktops, software, games, and more.
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HP Spectre x360 14 review: OLED makes a great 2-in-1 even better
- Stellar OLED display
- Unique and rugged design
- IR and fingerprint biometrics
- 1080p webcam with physical shutter
- Battery life not as long as last year’s model
- A bit heavy at three pounds
It’s neither the fastest nor the longest running, but the Spectre x360 14 remains one of our favorite business convertibles for its stunning design and display.
With the latest iteration of its premium Spectre x360 14, HP adds two new premium features not found on last year’s convertible alongside the requisite update to 12th-generation Intel silicon. The biggest addition is the high-resolution OLED panel that delivers exceptional image quality. The second addition is a high-resolution webcam, moving from an underwhelming 720p camera to a crisp and dynamic 1080p webcam.
The Spectre x360’s overall design remains unchanged. The all-metal chassis with gold accents offers a solid feel and luxurious looks, while the display’s 3:2 aspect ratio is geared toward business use rather than entertainment pursuits that would benefit from a wider screen. It’s still a tad heavy for a 14-inch convertible, and the battery life is shorter than last year’s model, but the Spectre remains a great pick for executive and other professionals looking for a portable and versatile two-in-one convertible.
HP Spectre x360 specs and features
Our HP Spectre x360 14 test system features the following specs:
- CPU: Quad-core Intel Core i7-1255U
- Memory: 16GB
- Graphics: Intel Iris Xe
- Storage: 1TB PCIe NVMe M.2 SSD
- Display: 13.5-inch 3000×2000, OLED touch panel
- Webcam: 1080p with physical camera shutter
- Connectivity: 2 x USB-C Thunderbolt 4, USB-A, combo audio jack, microSD card reader
- Networking: Wi-Fi 6, Bluetooth 5.0
- Biometrics: IR facial recognition, fingerprint reader
- Battery capacity: 66.5 Watt-hours
- Dimensions: 11.75 x 8.67 x 0.67 inches
- Measured weight: 3 pounds (laptop), 0.6 pounds (AC adapter)
- Price: $1,424.99
The HP Spectre x360 series starts at $999.99. The baseline model features a 12th-gen Core i5 CPU, 8GB RAM, a 512GB SSD and a Full HD display. Our test system features CPU, memory, storage and display upgrades that raised the price. At HP.com, it’s priced at $1,424.99, which reflects a $250 discount. Our test model is also available at Best Buy for $1,749.99, and it has occasionally been discounted to $1,399.99.
This year’s Spectre x360 trots out the same looks as last year’s model and remains a stunner. The all-metal chassis boasts a gorgeous, sophisticated design and rugged feel. There are three color options — silver, black, and a deep blue. (The latter two colors add $15 to the bill.) We received it in black. With the matte finish, it has subtle brown undertones that gives it a unique look among a sea of silver brushed aluminum laptops. The gem-cut edges and other gold accents create a pleasing contrast with the matte black surfaces.
The chassis remains the same as last year’s model and therefore the weight stays the same at three pounds. That’s a bit heavy for this class of 2-in-1, but most are close to three pounds. The Dell XPS 13 2-in-1, for example, with its 13.4-inch 16:10 display weighs 2.9 pounds. With the added heft, however, comes a solid feel. There is nothing flimsy about the Spectre x360.
When we looked at the Spectre x360 last year, it featured an IPS panel with a 1920×1280-pixel resolution and a boxy 3:2 aspect ratio. An 3000×2000 OLED model was sold as a Best Buy exclusive, which you might have missed. Now the OLED display is available direct from HP. It adds a reasonable $110 to the price of the system. It’s well worth the price. The OLED panel delivers incredible contrast with perfect blacks and bright whites. Colors are accurate and vivid. And the 3000×2000 resolution across the 13.5-inch panel creates a sharp image with crisp text.
IDG / Matthew Elliott
The display’s 3:2 aspect ratio is taller than a 16:10 or 16:9 widescreen. Movies and shows don’t fit as well as they do on a wider screen, but the boxier ratio is suited well for browsing the web and working on long documents. The 3:2 display is also a good fit in tablet mode. The squarer shape makes it feel more like an iPad than using a laptop spun around.
The touch display features pen support, and HP includes its Rechargeable MPP2.0 Tilt Pen. Tapping, swiping, and scribbling on the display felt natural with both a fingertip and the pen. There’s no garage for the pen, but it connects magnetically to the side of the system.
Befitting of the premium Spectre x360 are its four speakers that produce premium sound. The speakers create dynamic audio with crisp highs and a bit of a bass response. The audio begins to lose some clarity when you push the volume past 80% but at that level there’s still enough oomph to fill a small room.
Webcam goes to 1080p
A 720p webcam has no place on a premium Spectre model, and HP made the move to a 1080p camera with this year’s Spectre x360. It produces a clean, well-balanced image that has none of the grainy blotchiness of a 720p cam. If Zoom meetings and other video calls are a large part of your job, the 1080p will have you looking clearer to co-workers and clients. The camera has IR capabilities so you can log into the machine via facial recognition. And if you’d rather use your finger instead of your face, there’s a fingerprint reader tucked in between the spacebar and arrow keys at the bottom of the keyboard. Both biometric methods worked flawlessly.
The keyboard sacrifices the right Control key for the fingerprint reader, leaving only a Control key in the left corner. The keys offer a snappy response and quiet action for an overall pleasing and premium typing experience. One change from last year’s model — HP got rid of the right-side column of Home, Page Up/Down, and End keys. Those keys are now doubled mapped to the four arrow keys, which may disappoint some typists. In the row of Function keys at the top, there’s a key to cycle through the keyboard’s two-level backlight and two others to mute the microphone and cover the camera. When the camera’s physical cover is in place, you can see its white and black stripes to give you peace of mind that your privacy is protected. The mute and camera shutter keys themselves also have orange LEDs to give you visual proof that each device is deactivated.
The gold-edged touchpad offers a quiet, firm click response and accurate recording of mousing gestures. It’s near perfect. If I had a nit to pick, it would be the semi-glossy finish doesn’t offer as smooth gliding as would a more matte finish.
The useful port selection remains the same as last year’s model. There’s a pair of USB-C Thunderbolt 4 ports, a USB Type-A port, an audio jack, and a microSD card reader. One of the Thunderbolt 4 ports and the headphone jack are located on each of the back corners of the system. These corners are trimmed so each port sits on the diagonal. It’s an unusual design point, and one I doubt will catch on because it makes it a bit harder to access these ports than if they were simply located on the side. And if I could, I would swap out the headphone jack and have a Thunderbolt 4 port in each corner. Not only would I be able to charge the Spectre x360 from either side, but the headphone jack would be closer to the front of the system and my ears.
One last note on the power adapter. It also lives up to the premium Spectre name. The power brick is tiny and easily portable, and the cord is braided so it never tangles.
Our HP Spectre x360 test system features the Core i7-1255U processor, 16GB of RAM, integrated Intel Iris Xe graphics, and a 1TB SSD. The Core i7-1255U is a member of Intel’s 12th-gen Alder Lake U series of efficient, 15-watt mobile chips that feature Intel’s new hybrid architecture. It has two performance cores, eight efficiency cores, and a total of 12 processing threads.
We compared the Spectre x360’s performance to a mix of similarly sized laptops with 12th-gen Intel Core processors from both the efficient 15-watt U series and more balanced 28-watt P series that sits between the U series and high-powered 45-watt P series. Rounding out the charts are a couple of laptops based on AMD’s Ryzen 7 5800U processor and a Dell XPS 13 based on an 11th-gen Core i7.
The system felt peppy during our time with it and operated in near silence. We did see the battery life decline from last year’s model; the OLED panel is the likely cause for the shorter running time (more on that below).
Our first benchmark is PCMark 10, which measures performance on everyday computing work including office productivity tasks, web browsing, and video chats. All of the laptops here are overqualified for running general office apps. The Spectre x360 finished in the middle of the pack. With only two performance cores in the Core i7-1255U, the system couldn’t keep pace with the two AMD-based laptops — the Ryzen 7 5800U has eight processing cores and 16 processing threads. And the next two finishers feature the Core i7-1260P, which has four performance cores along with eight efficiency cores and a total of 16 processing threads.
Our HandBrake benchmark tests how a laptop is able to handle crushing CPU loads over a lengthy period—in this case, transcoding a 30GB MKV file to a format suitable for Android tablets using HandBrake, the free video encoding utility. The Spectre x360 again finished with a middling result and found itself well off the pace set by the systems with CPUs with more processing cores and threads.
Next up is Cinebench, another CPU-intensive test but one that renders a complex 2D scene over a short period of time. The Spectre x360’s Cinebench result is underwhelming. Its U series CPU is built for efficiency and not cranking through multithreaded multimedia applications. The Spectre x360 is a better fit for executives and other business users than creative professionals.
On our 3DMark benchmark, none of the laptops here — the Spectre x360 included — distinguished themselves. But that’s hardly a surprise given they all features integrated graphics.
To test a laptop’s battery life, we loop a 4K video using Windows 11’s Movies & TV app, with the laptop set to Airplane mode and earbuds plugged in. We set the screen brightness at a relatively bright 250 nits to 260 nits, which is a good brightness for watching a movie in an office with the lights on. The Spectre x360 lasted for more than 11 hours, which will get you through the longest workdays without needing to retreat to a wall outlet. That’s an impressive figure, but other models offer runtimes that are hours longer.
Last year’s Spectre x360 ran for more than three hours longer than this year’s model. With both systems featuring the same 66.5Whr battery, I suspect the culprit of the shorter runtime is the high-resolution OLED display. Even though an OLED can turn off individual pixels, a greater number of pixels means a greater drain on the battery. And we’ve yet to see any benefit in terms of battery life from an OLED laptop. In fact, we’ve generally seen that an OLED panel has a slight adverse effect on a laptop’s battery life.
Spectre still a favorite
Even with the decrease in battery life, we welcome the addition of the OLED display to the Spectre x360. It’s one of those features that once you’ve experienced it, you will never go back to the old way of a plain-Jane IPS LCD display. The gains in contrast and color dynamics are just too great. Plus, with OLED displays beginning to trickle down to midrange laptops, buyers should certainly expect an OLED on a high-end model like the Spectre x360.
OLED aside, it’s one of the best looking 2-in-1 convertibles on the market. The brownish-black chassis is unique without being garish, and the all-metal chassis is rock-solid if a tad heavy. With its U series processor and integrated graphics, it’s a better fit for general office tasks than creative work. Despite the drop in battery life, the Spectre x360 remains one of our favorite 2-in-1 business convertibles.
Author: Matt Elliott
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HP Spectre x360 13.5-inch (2022) review
Hp’s latest spectre upgrade is sleek and stylish, albeit pricey.
Tom's Guide Verdict
HP’s latest 13.5-inch edition of the convertible Spectre x360 is an impressive, well-rounded 2-in-1 that provides power and versatility—albeit at a somewhat steep price.
Stunning touch display
Plenty of power
Versatile form factor
Modest battery life
Runs hot at hinge
A bit pricey
Why you can trust Tom's Guide Our writers and editors spend hours analyzing and reviewing products, services, and apps to help find what's best for you. Find out more about how we test, analyze, and rate.
Price: $1,749 Display: 13.5-inch 3K2K (3,000 x 2,000) OLED Touch CPU: Intel Core i7-1255U GPU: Intel Iris Xe Graphics RAM: 16GB Storage: 1TB SSD Ports: 1 USB-A, 2 USB-C/Thunderbolt 4, 1 microSD slot, 1 Headphone port Size: 11.73 x 8.68 x 0.67 inches Weight: 3.01 pounds
If you’re on the hunt for a laptop that’s as versatile as it is capable, the HP Spectre x360 ought to be on your radar. This convertible 2-in-1 notebook transitions from standard laptop form into a tablet with ease, along with tent-like and full-flat forms, with a full-sized stylus included for sketching, annotating and more.
HP’s latest 13.5-inch version of the Spectre x360 comes with a 12th Gen Intel Core i7 chip that’s capable of handling all sorts of creative and productive apps, plus the 13.5-inch screen is a stunner and the refreshed design is appealing. The slim, transformable approach has a couple drawbacks, including a steep asking price, but this is an alluring option all the same that ranks among the best laptops you can buy.
HP Spectre x360 2-in-1 13.5-inch (2022) review: Price and configurations
- The top-end model we tested sells for $1,749
We reviewed the highest-tier configuration of the HP Spectre x360 2-in-1 laptop with a 13.5-inch OLED touch display at 3,000 x 2,000 resolution, plus an Intel Core i7-1255U processor, 16GB RAM, and a 1TB SSD. It sells for $1,749 exclusively from Best Buy .
HP also offers cheaper configurations with a lower-resolution 1080p display, as well as options that include half the RAM and/or SSD storage. Those models are available from HP.com. Our review unit came in Nightfall Black with brass accent details, but HP also sells the 13.5-inch Spectre x360 in Nocturne Blue and Natural Silver colorways.
HP Spectre x360 2-in-1 13.5-inch (2022) review: Design
- The latest Spectre sheds the angular accents for rounded features
- Putting ports on the back corners is a neat touch here
A glance at our review of the previous HP Spectre x360 2-in-1 14-inch model reveals a pretty significant design shift for 2022. The convertible form factor is the same and the HP Spectre x360 remains slim and versatile, but the visual flourishes on the aluminum chassis are newly refreshed.
HP’s latest refresh embraces rounded elements rather than the angular appeal of the last version, with smooth surfaces that meet at the edges at a slim, brass-hued meeting point. It’s a more understated approach this time around—a little less flashy, no doubt, but this Spectre still looks and feels like a premium, pricey notebook. And that’s exactly what it is.
As with the previous version, the upper right corner houses one of the two USB-C/Thunderbolt 4 ports—and now the headphone port is located on the upper left corner, as well. Coming from basically every other laptop, it’s an interesting adjustment to get used to, but also a distinctive design tweak. It arguably benefits the tablet form factor the most, adding to its versatility as you choose how to hold the device.
Along with the two USB-C ports, you also get one USB-A port on the left side of the laptop. It has a tiny spring-loaded door that partially covers the port when not in use, ensuring that the slim exterior remains smooth and flush otherwise. There’s also a microSD card slot on the right side of the laptop next to one of the USB-C ports. The Spectre x360 also offers the latest and greatest Wi-Fi 6E standard onboard for supported routers.
HP’s convertible folds up pretty slim with dimensions of 11.73 x 8.68 x 0.67 inches, and while there are lighter laptops out there—like the Acer Swift 5 at 2.65 pounds and M2 MacBook Air at 2.7 pounds—this 3.01-pound notebook is pretty easy to haul around. It only feels heavy in tablet form, really, as that’s noticeably heftier than an iPad or comparable device.
HP Spectre x360 2-in-1 13.5-inch (2022) review: Display
- This model has a gorgeous 3,000 x 2,000 OLED touch display
- At a 3:2 aspect ratio, this 13.5-inch panel provides a lot of screen space
As a laptop targeted at creatives and on-the-go professionals, the HP Spectre x360 demands a top-of-the-line display. Thankfully, HP did not disappoint. The configuration I tested features a bold 13.5-inch OLED touch display at a blisteringly sharp 3,000 x 2,000 resolution.
It’s been a while since I tested a laptop with an OLED panel and I was immediately struck by the deepness of the black levels and the vivid contrast. There are some truly fine LCD panels on today’s premier laptops, but the advantages of an OLED screen still stand out by comparison.
It scored well in our testing too, hitting 123.8% of the sRGB color gamut and 87.7% of the DCI-P3 space. Both specs top the Dell XPS 13 Plus and Apple’s M2 MacBook Pro alike.
Meanwhile, you can’t go wrong with a 3K x 2K resolution, providing ample crispness for text and graphics plus loads of potential screen real estate if you run at the native resolution without zooming. The 3:2 aspect ratio here gives you a taller space than a standard widescreen (16:9) approach, which is handy for productivity needs, and the 90% screen-to-body ratio means there’s little bezel surrounding the view.
HP advertises a respectable 400 nits of brightness, whereas we measured an average of 362 nits. Most of the time, the HP Spectre x360 met my visibility needs, but there were occasions where I wanted a little more brightness. I’m used to cranking up a 2021 M1 MacBook Pro at full brightness, which tops HP’s panel on that mark.
This bold and crisp 13.5-inch panel is a touchscreen too, of course, which is essential for the tablet form and may be useful to media creators and consumers alike. It responded admirably to both my fingers and the bundled HP MPP 2.0 Tilt Pen, which I’ll touch on further later in the review.
HP Spectre x360 2-in-1 13.5-inch (2022) review: Performance
- The latest 13.5-inch Spectre x360 has a speedy Intel Core i7-1255U chip
- It performs well, but the Core i7-1260P chip in some rival laptops is faster
HP packed quite a bit of power within the skinny frame of the HP Spectre x360. It uses a 12th-gen Intel Core i7-1255U chip, which is designed for ultrathin laptops. As such, it puts out a bit less speed than the Core i7-1260P that some recent premium notebooks are using, but it also sucks up less battery life as a result.
Practically, in everyday use, I didn’t notice any real difference in usability between the Spectre x360 and the Acer Swift 5, for example, which uses the higher-end i7-1260P processor. Both are super speedy and responsive, with 16GB RAM here ensuring that the device never feels bogged down even amid loads of active browser tabs.
Still, when it comes to benchmark testing, there is a difference in performance. We registered a score of 7,243 on Geekbench 5.4, which is a fair bit less than the Swift 5’s 9,859, as well as the M2 MacBook Pro’s score of 8,911. It’s still a great score, however—and again, the device didn’t feel slower than the Acer Swift 5 in terms of daily use and navigation.
Where you’ll see more of a difference is with processor-intensive tasks. For example, our Handbrake video test—in which a 4K clip is transcoded down to 1080p—took 10:33 on the HP Spectre x360. That’s nearly three full minutes longer than the Acer Swift 5 (7:35), while the M2 MacBook Air completed the task in 7:52. Still, it crushes laptops with last year’s 11th-gen i7 chips, including the Dell XPS 13 OLED (18:12).
You can expect pretty speedy performance from this 1TB SSD, as well. We were able to duplicate 25GB in files in 19.7 seconds for an effective transfer rate of over 1.36GB per second. That’s short of the Acer Swift 5 (1.67GB/sec), again, but beats rivals like the Microsoft Surface Laptop 4 (562MBps) and Samsung Galaxy Book Pro 360 (869MBps). It’s extremely quick.
As you might expect from a super-thin laptop, the HP Spectre x360 13.5-inch isn’t built for serious gaming. But it performed better than expected, despite relying on integrated Intel Iris Xe graphics rather than a dedicated GPU. You won’t be able to run super-demanding games like Cyberpunk 2077 or Forza Horizon 5, but it can handle popular free-to-play games like Fortnite and Rocket League.
You’ll need to knock down the resolution on Rocket League and Fortnite to get them to run at a stable frame rate, but they both played smoothly with more effects enabled than on the Acer Swift 5. That trend continued with our benchmark test on Civilization VI: Gathering Storm, which delivered better frame rates than on the Swift 5—over 29fps at 1080p resolution, or nearly 23fps at the native 2000p resolution.
HP Spectre x360 2-in-1 13.5-inch (2022) review: Audio
- Sound quality is pretty good overall, but not the best around
HP has outfitted the Spectre x360 2-in-1 laptop with Bang & Olufsen quad speakers, which do an admirable job of presenting clear and crisp audio playback on such a slim notebook. They get solidly loud and music output sounds pretty balanced overall, although bass is lacking.
All that said, when put side-by-side with an M1 MacBook Pro, Apple’s laptop beat it across the board, with louder playback, more dynamic output, and better bass. Plus, like a lot of notebooks with downward-firing speakers, HP’s Spectre can sound muffled when it’s in your lap. MacBooks avoid that issue entirely with speaker grates on either side of the keyboard.
HP Spectre x360 2-in-1 13.5-inch (2022) review: Keyboard and touchpad
- The keys feel responsive and provide a comfortable level of travel
- The touchpad is huge, plus you get a stylus for the touchscreen
HP’s boxy chiclet keys depress smoothly and spring right back into place, avoiding feeling mushy or unresponsive. The keys are slightly narrower than on a MacBook Pro, for example, albeit with a little more space between them, but they press more deeply here.
In any case, I made a smooth transition over to the keyboard, topping 100 words per minute on the 10fastfingers.com test, much as I did with the latest Acer Swift 5 model. My only annoyance with the keyboard is that HP placed little rubberized pads around it to facilitate the 2-in-1 design, and occasionally it’d catch me off guard when grazing a finger or palm against one.
Thankfully, HP has adorned the Spectre x360 with a huge touchpad at 4.9 x 3.1 inches, similar to recent MacBooks, providing plenty of space for multi-touch gestures and comfortable scrolling. It’s a responsive, reliable touchpad that is slightly depressed compared to the surrounding surface and smoother, as well, making it easy to find with your fingers.
Meanwhile, the fingerprint sensor works admirably for security purposes, with quick recognition to unlock the laptop. The placement—to the left of the arrow keys, right in the keyboard layout—may take some getting used to, but the function is just fine.
As mentioned, the HP Spectre x360 comes with its own rechargeable touch pen, which works precisely and comes with swappable tip options to suit your drawing and annotating needs. A pair of buttons on the stylus can be customized for certain needs, while a hidden USB-C port—revealed via a sliding cover—makes it easy to top up when the battery runs low. It magnetically connects to the right side of the screen when not in use, too.
HP Spectre x360 2-in-1 13.5-inch (2022) review: Webcam
- It’s a decent 5MP video camera that works fine for video conferencing
With a 5-megapixel camera onboard, the HP Spectre x360 does an OK job with video conferencing, capturing 1080p video footage with solid detail. It can grab still images at up to 2560x1920 too, depending on selected aspect ratio. It’s not the sharpest shooter I’ve seen on a recent laptop, as the Acer Swift 5 packs in even more detail, but it gets the job done.
HP bundles in a few additional video options here, including an Auto Frame feature that will follow your face around the frame, as well as tweaks that can lighten your image and apply filters to your face. Personally, I didn’t keep any of them on after trying them out: Auto Frame perpetually zooms into your face, shedding video quality in the process, while the backlight adjustment feature can wash out the video. Your mileage may vary.
HP Spectre x360 2-in-1 13.5-inch (2022) review: Battery life
- Battery life is only modest compared to premium rivals
- At max brightness, it only lasted about four hours in average daily use
For all its power and polish, the HP Spectre x360’s battery life comes up short. If you’re willing to cut down the brightness on that beautiful screen, you can potentially stretch it out across a full workday.
We registered just over 10 hours of battery life when knocking the brightness to 150 nits (less than half of peak) and continuously browsing the web. Still, that’s less than other 2-in-1 models like the Lenovo Yoga 9i (11:15) and the 2021 Spectre x360 14-inch model (about 12 hours). Apple’s M2 MacBook Air blows them all out of the water at 18:20, mind you.
But if you want to run the Spectre x360 at full settings, be ready to sacrifice significant uptime. At max brightness, I notched only about four hours of uptime while performing basic tasks like browsing the web, writing, and watching YouTube videos.
HP Spectre x360 2-in-1 13.5-inch (2022) review: Heat
- It runs hot around the hinge with power-intensive apps and games
As a slim 2-in-1 convertible laptop, the HP Spectre x360 doesn’t have a ton of room to fit heavy-duty fans. Most of the time, though, it does just fine at dissipating heat—but not always. Noticeably, the Spectre x360 runs hottest around the hinge, where we registered a peak temperature of 100.5 degrees during lab testing.
That’s solidly above our 95-degree comfort threshold, but it’s worth noting that no other part of the laptop got as warm during times of peak performance.
HP Spectre x360 2-in-1 13.5-inch (2022) review: Verdict
- It’s an impressive 2-in-1 option with a few drawbacks in the mix
- You’ll get more power and battery life for less cash in a non-convertible laptop
If you think you’ll reliably use the tablet form factor and stylus, then the HP Spectre x360 is a sharp 2-in-1 option for those with a premium budget. There are other strong options near this price point, including the upgraded Lenovo Yoga 9i with 12th-gen Intel Core i7 chips, however—we really liked last year’s model with the previous Core i7 processor aboard.
All that said, you’re clearly paying HP a premium for the convertible form factor here—so if that’s negligible to your needs, you can find more power and longer battery life at a lower price, particularly with the excellent Acer Swift 5. Even so, if you need a notebook that flips, HP’s option is plenty enticing.
Andrew Hayward is a freelance writer for Tom’s Guide who contributes laptop and other hardware reviews. He’s also the Culture Editor at crypto publication Decrypt covering the world of Web3. Andrew’s writing on games and tech has been published in more than 100 publications since 2006, including Rolling Stone, Vice, Polygon, Playboy, Stuff, and GamesRadar.
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- Benchmarks / Tech
- Buyers Guide
2022 HP Spectre x360 13.5 review: The pinnacle subnotebook convertible
The original 13.5-inch HP Spectre x360 launched in 2020 and it quickly became one of our favorite convertible laptops in its size class. The 2021 refresh would introduce very few changes for what amounted to essentially the same performance and user experience. Fortunately, the 2022 revision includes a handful of changes beyond the obvious CPU upgrade that interested users should definitely want to know about.
Our specific unit in review is the higher-end configuration with the Core i7-1255U CPU, 3000 x 2000 OLED touchscreen, and 16 GB of soldered RAM for approximately $1700 USD retail. Lesser SKUs with the Core i5-1235U and 1980 x 1280 IPS touchscreen are available for lower prices as well. A 1000-nit option exists, but only for certain 1280p IPS SKUs. All options otherwise come with integrated graphics only and no WAN.
Alternatives to the HP Spectre x360 13.5 include other prosumer or office-centric 13.5-inch laptops like the Framework Laptop , Microsoft Surface Laptop 4 13 , or the Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Yoga series. Note that the 2022 HP model is called the "Spectre x360 13.5" whereas earlier 2020 or 2021 models are called the "Spectre x360 14". We suspect that the manufacturer changed the name this year to more accurately reflect the 13.5-inch screen size.
More HP reviews:
- Pavilion Plus 14
- EliteBook 845 G9
- ProBook 445 G8
- ZBook Power 15 G8
Potential Competitors in Comparison
Case — rounder and smoother.
HP has revamped the 2020 design for the this 2022 refresh. Most of the changes, however, are largely superficial and with minor internal changes. Users can easily distinguish the 2022 model from the 2020 version by its rounder edges and corners, different keyboard layout, and repositioned ports. Otherwise, chassis rigidity remains just as strong as it was before for a luxurious impression and feel. We especially appreciate how much more serviceable and stronger the HP design is when compared to the closed Surface Laptop 4 13 and more creaky Framework Laptop , respectively.
Both dimensions and weight have not changed from the original 2020 design for better or worse. While that's not necessarily bad, there are several other 13.5-inch laptops that are thinner than our Spectre by a few millimeters or more like the Surface Laptop 4, Framework Laptop, or the Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Titanium Yoga G1 .
Connectivity — thunderbolt 4 support.
The 2022 model retains all the ports on the original 2021 model albeit with the 3.5 mm headset jack repositioned. The corner ports continue to be a distinguishing feature of the Spectre series.
SD Card Reader
For some reason or another, HP has significantly downgraded the performance of the MicroSD reader from the previous generation model. Moving 1 GB of images from our UHS-II test card to desktop takes about 21 seconds compared to just 5 to 6 seconds on the older Spectre x360 14.
An Intel AX211 comes standard for Wi-Fi 6E and Bluetooth 5.2 connectivity. Transfer rates are steady and without issues when paired to our 6 GHz network.
HP has upgraded the integrated webcam from 1 MP on the 2020 model to 5 MP on this 2022 revision. The higher resolution is immediately noticeable for one of the clearest picture quality of any subnotebook webcam. In fact, this Spectre is the first in its size category to integrate a 5 MP webcam. Video quality is still limited to 1080p at 30 FPS, however.
Both a webcam shutter and IR sensor are included for privacy and Windows Hello support, respectively.
The bottom panel comes off easily with just a Torx screwdriver. We appreciate that there are no screws hidden underneath the rubber footing as well.
Users can swap out the SSD and WLAN modules while the RAM modules are fixed. The WLAN module was not removable on the 2021/2020 model as shown by the comparison images below.
Accessories and Warranty
The retail box includes a carrying sleeve, magnetic active stylus pen ( MPP2.0 Tilt Pen ), and a 4-port USB-C hub (2x USB-A, HDMI, and USB-C). We certainly love that HP throws in a bunch of useful accessories that other laptop makers tend to skimp on.
Input Devices — Comfortable Keyboard With A Large Clickpad
When compared to the 2020 model, HP has completely removed the right column of keys for the 2022 revision. This means that there are no more dedicated keys for PgUp, PgDn, Home, or End as these are now secondary functions associated with the arrow keys. If you rely on these keys a lot for your day-to-day workloads, then you might be disappointed by the sudden change.
Key layout and feedback are both otherwise very close to the 2020 model for a similar typing experience. We still find the keyboards on HP Spectre, Envy, or EliteBook laptops to be some of the best as they are not as spongy or shallow as on most other Ultrabooks.
The clickpad is even larger this time when compared to the 2020 model (12.5 x 8 cm vs. 11.5 x 7.4 cm) for more comfortable multi-touch inputs. Nonetheless, clicking on the integrated mouse buttons still feels softer and spongier than we would like.
Display — Same 3:2 60 Hz Samsung OLED Experience
While our 2022 test unit uses a different display controller than the 2021 model (SDC4160 vs. SDC4148), both are still 3:2 OLED panels from Samsung for the same viewing experience two years in a row. Core attributes like resolution, refresh rate, gamut, response times, and brightness have not changed. We would love to see 90 Hz or 120 Hz OLED options in the future similar to what Asus is currently offering on some of its ZenBook and VivoBook models.
* ... smaller is better
HP advertises full P3 coverage which we can confirm with our own independent measurements. Be sure to set the colors as needed via an HP menu by opening Command Center and then clicking 'Display Control' near the bottom left corner.
The OLED panel is not calibrated at factory likely because this isn't an EliteBook or professional laptop which is a shame because OLED is capable of reproducing accurate colors. Average grayscale and color deltaE values are nonetheless still very good at just 2.3 and 1.78, respectively.
Display Response Times
Screen flickering / pwm (pulse-width modulation).
Flickering is present on all brightness levels much like most other OLED laptop panels we've tested thus far. A frequency of 238 Hz is present from 0 to 37 percent brightness while 38 to 100 percent brightness would exhibit a frequency of 60 Hz.
Outdoor visibility remains the same as on the original since maximum brightness has not changed. Users may want to consider the 1000-nit IPS 1280p SKU if viewability is of utmost concern.
Performance — The 12th Gen Intel Difference
We set our unit to Performance mode via the HP Command Center software prior to running any benchmarks below. It's recommended that users become familiar with this software as the six power profile settings can be found here: Smart Sense (auto), Power Saver, Quiet, Cool, Balanced, and Performance.
CPU performance is excellent with multi-thread results that are faster than on the Inspiron 14 7420 2-in-1 or HP ProBook 450 G9 each equipped with the same Core i7-1255U CPU. Results are thankfully much closer to the Core i7-1260P or Core i7-1280P to be about 1.5x to 2x faster than the Core i7-1165G7 in last year's model.
We recommend avoiding the lower-end Core i5-1235U SKU as that option is barely any faster than the Core i7-1165G7.
Cinebench R15 Multi Loop
PCMark 10 scores are consistently higher than what we recorded on yesteryear's model sometimes by significant margins. We suspect the move to a newer generation CPU and PCIe4 storage instead of PCIe3 or Intel Optane are likely major contributors to the boost in PCMark 10 performance.
LatencyMon reveals DPC issues when opening multiple browser tabs on our homepage. 4K playback at 60 FPS is imperfect as well with 7 dropped frames during our minute-long test video.
Our test unit ships with a 1 TB Micron 3400 (MTFDKBA1T0TFH) PCIe4 x4 NVMe SSD for very fast sequential read and write rates of about 6600 MB/s and 5000 MB/s, respectively. Though it's outgunned by the Western Digital SN850 especially in smaller block sizes, our system is nonetheless able to maintain the maximum transfer rates of the SSD for extended periods as shown by our DiskSpd loop results below.
Disk Throttling: DiskSpd Read Loop, Queue Depth 8
Gpu performance — same iris xe performance.
Graphics performance is only 2 to 17 percent faster than what we recorded on the 2021 model since Intel has made no changes to the integrated Iris Xe 96 EUs GPU. While still a good GPU as far as integrated graphics go, it is now outclassed by the recently released Radeon 680M by decent margins.
Note that graphics performance drops significantly if running on Balanced mode instead of Performance mode as shown by our 3DMark 11 results below.
Witcher 3 FPS Chart
Emissions — just a tiny bit quieter, system noise.
On paper, HP has improved the cooling solution by adding more fan blades that are thinner than the ones on the previous generation model. In reality, however, any differences will be hardly noticeable by the user. Our fan noise measurements between the 2020 and 2022 models are nearly the same when gaming or running other high loads. The 2020 model wasn't particularly loud anyway even when on Performance mode and so it's not a complaint to say that there are no major improvements in terms of noise. Alternatives like the Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Titanium Yoga G1 or Framework Laptop become louder faster.
Surface temperatures are cooler on the newer model when compared to the older model even though processor performance has increased. Even idling on desktop shows wide differences of about 6 C and 7 C on the top and bottom hot spots, respectively. When under extreme processing stress, the keyboard hot spots on both models are about the same at 37 C each.
When running Prime95 on Performance mode, CPU clock rates, temperature, and board power draw would spike to 3.2 GHz, 99 C, and 44 W, respectively, for the first couple of seconds before steadily dropping and stabilizing at 2.8 GHz, 97 C, and 28 W. Core temperature would remain very high to show that the cooling solution is being pushed to its limits in order to accommodate the demanding Alder Lake CPU. However, we appreciate that both performance and temperature are at least steady this time as opposed to the cycling behavior when repeating this same stress test on the 2020 Tiger Lake-U model. When on Balanced mode, CPU clock rates, temperature, and power draw would all fall even further to just 2.0 GHz, 75 C, and 18 W, respectively.
GPU clock rates would stabilize at about 1147 MHz while temperature would cycle between 72 C to 97 C when running Witcher 3 on Performance mode. The stable clock rate addresses the cycling frame rate issue we observed on the 2020 model for more stable gaming performance. GPU clock rate would drop to 998 MHz if running on Balanced mode alongside other deficits as shown by the screenshots below.
Running on battery power limits performance. A 3DMark 11 test on batteries would return Physics and Graphics scores of 11227 and 6194 points, respectively, compared to 14505 and 6243 points when on mains.
HP Spectre x360 13.5 14t-ef000 audio analysis
(+) | speakers can play relatively loud (82 dB) Bass 100 - 315 Hz (±) | reduced bass - on average 13.6% lower than median (±) | linearity of bass is average (14.1% delta to prev. frequency) Mids 400 - 2000 Hz (+) | balanced mids - only 4.4% away from median (+) | mids are linear (3.7% delta to prev. frequency) Highs 2 - 16 kHz (+) | balanced highs - only 2.9% away from median (+) | highs are linear (2.9% delta to prev. frequency) Overall 100 - 16.000 Hz (+) | overall sound is linear (12.6% difference to median) Compared to same class » 9% of all tested devices in this class were better, 3% similar, 88% worse » The best had a delta of 6%, average was 21%, worst was 57% Compared to all devices tested » 8% of all tested devices were better, 2% similar, 90% worse » The best had a delta of 4%, average was 26%, worst was 134%
Apple MacBook Pro 16 2021 M1 Pro audio analysis
(+) | speakers can play relatively loud (84.7 dB) Bass 100 - 315 Hz (+) | good bass - only 3.8% away from median (+) | bass is linear (5.2% delta to prev. frequency) Mids 400 - 2000 Hz (+) | balanced mids - only 1.3% away from median (+) | mids are linear (2.1% delta to prev. frequency) Highs 2 - 16 kHz (+) | balanced highs - only 1.9% away from median (+) | highs are linear (2.7% delta to prev. frequency) Overall 100 - 16.000 Hz (+) | overall sound is linear (4.6% difference to median) Compared to same class » 0% of all tested devices in this class were better, 0% similar, 100% worse » The best had a delta of 5%, average was 18%, worst was 45% Compared to all devices tested » 0% of all tested devices were better, 0% similar, 100% worse » The best had a delta of 4%, average was 26%, worst was 134%
Energy Management — More Demanding Than Before
Idling on desktop consumes between 4 W and 13 W depending on the brightness setting and power profile. In fact, an all-white screen at the maximum brightness setting would draw up to 8 W more power than an all-black screen due to the OLED panel. Users can extend battery life by opting for darker display colors instead of white.
Running 3DMark 06 would demand 50 percent more power than on the 2021 Spectre x360 14 running on an older 11th gen CPU despite the minor year-over-year boost to graphics performance. The higher draw can be mostly attributed to the higher Turbo Boost potential and thus package power draw of the CPU.
We're able to record a temporary maximum draw of 65.2 W from the small (~9.6 x 5.3 x 2.2 cm) 65 W AC adapter as shown by the screenshots below when the CPU is at 100 percent utilization.
Power Consumption Witcher 3 / Stresstest
Power consumption external monitor, battery life.
At 66 Wh, battery capacity has not changed from the last generation model. Real-world WLAN runtime remains almost the same at 8 hours, but the newer model can last for a few hours longer if simply idling on desktop. The 8-hour mark is about average for a 14-inch Ultrabook. The Asus ZenBook 14X OLED UX5400EA lasts for about 2 hours shorter albeit it comes with faster discrete Nvidia MX graphics.
Charging from empty to full takes just under 2 hours.
Verdict — The Prosumer Convertible To Own
The 2022 Spectre x360 13.5 addresses some of the concerns we experienced with the original 2020 model. Namely, performance is now more stable for both steadier clock rates and frame rates when gaming. Raw CPU performance is significantly higher than 11th gen Intel without necessarily needing to run noticeably warmer or louder. Power consumption is much higher, however, but at least battery life does not appear to be affected when simply browsing the web or streaming video.
The Spectre x360 13.5 is just one or two features shy of being a full-fledged EliteBook for prosumers. It's a little heavier and bigger than comparable 13-inch convertibles, but users gain higher performance and one of the best webcams on any subnotebook.
Other major changes include the high resolution 5 MP webcam, PCIe4 storage, removable WLAN module, larger clickpad, revised keyboard layout, and slower MicroSD performance. Some of these are welcomed upgrades, but not everyone will like the fact that this model has fewer keyboard keys than the 2020 version and the slower MicroSD reader.
Users may appreciate the integrated USB-A port whereas other 13-inch convertibles like the Dell XPS 13 9310 2-in-1 or Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Titanium Yoga have only USB-C. These alternatives are slightly lighter and thinner than our HP, however, which means you'll have to settle with a bigger system if you really value the 5 MP webcam and USB-A port of the Spectre x360 13.5.
For future models, we would love to see a pre-calibrated display, 5G WAN options, 90 or 120 Hz OLED panels, and a narrower top bezel. A Spectre notebook these days are coming pretty close to EliteBook prices which means more advanced configurable options aren't irrational.
Price and Availability
The 2022 Spectre x360 13.5 is now widely available through Best Buy and the official HP online store starting at $1200 USD for the base Core i5 and 1280p IPS SKU up to $1750 for the highest-end Core i7 2000p OLED SKU.
HP Spectre x360 13.5 14t-ef000 - 2022-08-30 08/30/2022 v7 Allen Ngo
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HP Spectre x360 14 (2023) Laptop Review
The HP Spectre x360 14 (2023) is a premium Windows ultraportable laptop. It replaces the HP Spectre x360 14 from 2022 (Intel 12th Gen). This 2023 model is identical in design to its predecessor, as it's mainly an internal spec bump up to Intel 13th Gen CPUs. RAM and storage max out at 32GB and 2TB, respectively. It has Wi-Fi 6E wireless connectivity, a 1080p webcam, and a 66Wh battery. For the display, you can get an FHD+ (1920 x 1280) IPS or a 3k (3000 x 2000) OLED panel. There's an additional FHD+ IPS panel with an advertised brightness of 1000 cd/m² and an integrated privacy screen to protect your information from prying eyes. Ports include one USB-A, two USB-C/Thunderbolt 4, a MicroSD card reader, and a headphone jack.
You can see our unit's specifications and the available configuration options in the Differences Between Variants section.
The HP Spectre x360 is great for school use. Its compact and lightweight design makes it easy to carry around, and its battery lasts over thirteen hours of light use. You can get it with an FHD+ IPS or 3k OLED display; both look sharp and get bright enough for use in most indoor settings. If you like handwritten notes, this laptop has stylus support and comes with a pen in the box. The keyboard feels great to type on, and the touchpad is large and responsive. Its Intel 13th Gen U-series CPU and integrated graphics can handle general productivity tasks like web browsing and text processing; however, they aren't ideal for demanding workloads like CAD or programming.
- Thin and light.
- All-day battery life.
- Sharp, bright FHD+ displays.
- Comfortable keyboard, large touchpad.
- Great 1080p webcam.
- CPU and GPU can't handle demanding workloads.
The HP Spectre x360 is mediocre for gaming. It's only available with low-power Intel 13th Gen U-series CPUs and integrated graphics, which aren't powerful enough to provide smooth gameplay in demanding games. You can play some older or lighter titles, but you'll have to play with low settings to get playable frame rates. Also, there are only 60Hz display options with no VRR to reduce screen tearing. On the upside, it doesn't get overly hot or loud under load.
- Fast, user-replaceable SSD.
- Doesn't get hot or loud under load.
- Only 60Hz display options with no VRR.
- Soldered RAM.
The HP Spectre x360 is great for media consumption. It's very portable due to its compact and lightweight design, and its battery lasts over ten hours of video playback. Since this is a 2-in-1, you can set the laptop up in tent mode or use it as a tablet. It's available with an FHD+ IPS or 3k OLED display; both look very sharp and get bright enough for indoor use. There's also an FHD+ display option with an advertised 1000 cd/m² brightness for outdoor use. The FHD+ panels aren't ideal for dark room viewing, as their low contrast makes blacks look gray, so it's best to get the OLED panel if you often view content in a dim setting. The speakers are bottom-firing; however, they get very loud with minimal compression and sound clear, with a decent amount of bass.
- Available with 3k OLED display.
- Speakers sound clear, with a decent amount of bass.
- IPS panels aren't ideal for dark room viewing.
Depending on your workload, the HP Spectre x360 can be a good option for use as a workstation. It provides a great user experience with a nice sharp screen, a comfortable keyboard, and low fan noise. It also has a good port selection with two Thunderbolt 4s for your peripherals and external displays. Unfortunately, performance is the problem, as its low-power Intel 13th Gen U-series CPU and integrated graphics can't handle demanding workloads. You can do some color-critical work, though, as the 3k OLED display has full DCI P3 and Adobe RGB coverage.
- OLED panel has full DCI P3 and Adobe RGB coverage.
The HP Spectre x360 is good for business use. It has a compact and lightweight design, and its battery lasts over thirteen hours of light use. Its 14-inch display provides just enough space for split-screen multitasking and gets bright enough to combat glare. The keyboard feels comfortable to type on, and the touchpad is responsive to all movements and gestures. Performance-wise, its Intel 13th Gen CPU can easily handle productivity tasks like text processing, web browsing, spreadsheets, and presentations. It has a great 1080p webcam for video calls and a wide port selection, including two Thunderbolt 4s. Unfortunately, the RAM isn't user-replaceable, so you'll have to get enough for your needs upfront.
- 8.2 Multimedia
- 7.7 Workstation
- 7.9 Business
- Updated Oct 05, 2023: Review published.
- Updated Oct 02, 2023: Early access published.
- Updated Sep 22, 2023: Our testers have started testing this product.
- Updated Sep 07, 2023: The product has arrived in our lab, and our testers will start evaluating it soon.
- Updated Sep 01, 2023: We've purchased the product and are waiting for it to arrive in our lab.
Differences between sizes and variants.
Our HP Spectre x360 14 (model 14-ef2000ca) has an FHD+ IPS (400 cd/m²) display, an Intel Core i5-1335U CPU, 16GB of RAM, and 1TB of storage. The screen, CPU, memory, and storage are configurable; the available options are in the table below.
You can see our unit's label here .
Compared To Other Laptops
The HP Spectre x360 14 is a good general productivity laptop. It provides an excellent user experience with its sharp screen, comfortable keyboard, and large touchpad, and its battery life is among the best for Windows laptops. However, its CPU performance isn't as good as many other laptops with a similar configuration, as its tuning prioritizes a better user experience over raw performance.
For more options, check out our recommendations for the best lightweight laptops , the best travel laptops , and the best business laptops .
The HP Spectre x360 14 (2023) and the HP ENVY x360 15 (2023) are both great ultraportable laptops and very similar overall. The Spectre is more portable since it's a smaller device, and its battery lasts much longer. Although its display isn't as large as the Envy's, it looks sharper due to its higher pixel density. There's also a 3k and a 1000 cd/m² FHD+ display option with an integrated privacy screen, which you can't get on the ENVY. On the other hand, the ENVY has a better 1440p webcam and is available with an NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3050 discrete GPU.
The HP Spectre x360 14 (2023) and the Lenovo Yoga 7i 16 (2023) are both great 2-in-1 convertible laptops. The HP is more portable since it's a smaller device, and its battery lasts slightly longer. The HP's screen is smaller, but you can configure it with a 3k OLED display that provides a significantly better viewing experience, making it a better option for media consumption. On the other hand, the Lenovo has a wider port selection and is available with faster P-series CPUs.
The HP Spectre x360 14 (2023) and the ASUS Zenbook 14 Flip OLED (2023) are very similar 2-in-1 convertible laptops. The HP has longer battery life and better speakers; however, the ASUS has an HDMI port and is available with faster P-series CPUs. If permanent burn-in worries you, the HP is available with IPS panels but not the ASUS.
The HP Spectre x360 14 (2023) and the Dell XPS 13 Plus (2022) are both premium laptops that provide a great user experience. The HP is a 2-in-1 convertible with stylus support, while the Dell is a more traditional clamshell model. The Dell feels much sturdier build-wise; however, it doesn't have as many ports as the HP, and its battery life is significantly shorter.
The HP Spectre x360 14 has a sleek, premium design that fits easily into most professional work environments. It has a silver-color aluminum chassis with diamond-cut corners at the back, thin bezels, silver-color keycaps, a glass touchpad, and a chrome HP logo on the lid. On the bottom, you'll find a pair of speakers near the front and air vents near the back. There are also air vents on the back of the laptop. It's available in three colors: Natural Silver, Nocturne Blue, and Nightfall Black.
The HP Spectre feels well-built. Its all-aluminum chassis feels sturdy, with no obvious gaps in the construction. However, there's some flex on the lid, display, and keyboard deck, more than expected for a premium all-metal laptop. The finish doesn't scratch easily. Fingerprints and smudges aren't a problem on the silver model, though it's likely worse on the darker color models. The feet feel strong and stick firmly to the bottom.
The HP Spectre has good hinges. They feel smooth when opening and closing the lid and are very stable, exhibiting almost no wobble when touching the screen or typing aggressively. There's too much resistance to open the laptop with one hand; however, that's somewhat normal for a 2-in-1, as the hinges need to be stiff enough to prevent the laptop from collapsing in tent mode and to keep the screen still in tablet mode.
The HP Spectre 2-in-1 and its power adapter are compact and lightweight.
The HP Spectre x360's serviceability is mediocre. Accessing the internals is relatively easy; you only need to remove four torque screws and undo the clips holding the bottom panel with a prying tool. The screws are of two different sizes, so keep them organized. Unfortunately, the RAM isn't user-replaceable. The storage slot supports M.2 2280 PCIe Gen 4 SSDs.
You can see the maintenance and service guide here .
- HP Spectre x360 14 laptop
- 65W USB-C power adapter and cord
- HP Rechargeable MPP 2.0 Tilt Pen
- Extra pen tips
- Laptop sleeve
The HP Spectre x360 is available with the following displays:
- IPS 1920 x 1280 60Hz Touchscreen (400 cd/m²)
- IPS 1920 x 1280 60Hz Touchscreen (1000 cd/m² with integrated privacy screen)
- OLED 3000 x 2000 60Hz Touchscreen (400 cd/m²)
Although HP markets this laptop as a 14-inch model, the screen is actually 13.5 inches. Both the FHD+ (1920 x 1280) and 3k (3000 x 2000) panels look very sharp. The latter is technically sharper, with a pixel density of 267 PPI; however, the difference isn't immediately noticeable on such a small display at typical viewing distances. Also, the 3k display will consume more power. Like all OLEDs, the 3k display is susceptible to permanent burn-in with static elements like Windows' taskbar, though it's unlikely to be an issue for those viewing varied content.
The 3:2 aspect ratio is great for productivity, as the increased vertical space lets you see more information at once, reducing the need to scroll. It's also well suited for tablet use, as it makes the screen feel less narrow in portrait orientation.
The HP Spectre x360 is only available with 60Hz displays, which is typical for a productivity laptop. The FHD+ IPS panel has a slow response time, causing visible ghosting in fast-moving scenes. The 1000 cd/m² FHD+ panel will perform similarly. The 3k OLED panel likely has a faster response time, as most OLEDs do.
The FHD+ panel has a good contrast ratio. It's at the higher end for an IPS panel but relatively low compared to other display technologies. Blacks still look gray in dim settings at this contrast level. For the best dark room viewing experience, go with the 3k OLED panel. It has effectively an infinite contrast ratio as, like all OLEDs, it can turn off individual pixels to produce perfect blacks.
The FHD+ display gets bright enough for use in most indoor environments but not quite outdoors in broad daylight. It's very dim at the lowest brightness setting, which is great for dark room viewing, as it's easier on the eyes. The other FHD+ display has an advertised brightness of 1000 cd/m², so it's a much better option for outdoor use. The 3k OLED panel has an advertised brightness of 400 cd/m².
The display handles reflections well. Its glossy finish mostly struggles with direct, mirror-like reflections, so it's best to avoid having bright light sources directly behind you, like a lamp or open window during the day. These reflections are visible even with the screen at maximum brightness.
The FHD+ display's black uniformity is decent. There's a little bit of clouding here and there, which is only visible when viewing dark color content in a dim setting. The 1000 cd/m² FHD+ display will likely have similar uniformity. The OLED display has perfect uniformity since OLEDs can turn off individual pixels to produce perfect blacks.
The FHD+ display's horizontal viewing angle is okay. The image dims and washes out relatively quickly as you move to the side, so you need to be more or less directly in front of the screen to get the best accuracy. The 1000 cd/m² FHD+ display has a much narrower viewing angle due to its integrated privacy screen. This privacy-protection filter makes the displayed content harder to see from the side, similar to the one on the HP ENVY x360 13 (2020) . The 3.5k OLED panel will likely perform better regarding color washout and brightness loss, but it'll struggle more with color shifting.
The FHD+ display's vertical viewing angle is okay. Like the horizontal viewing angle, the image dims and washes when viewing from above and below, so you need to look at the screen more or less straight on to see an accurate image, which can be challenging in tight places where you don't have much room to tilt the screen, like on a bus or airplane. Again, the vertical viewing angle on the 1000 cd/m² FHD+ display will be much worse due to the privacy screen, and the OLED panel will likely perform better regarding color washout and brightness loss but struggle more with color shifting.
The FHD+ display's out-of-the-box accuracy is decent. Most color inaccuracies are minor and hard to spot. The white balance is a bit off at higher brightness levels where there's too much red. The color temperature is slightly warmer than the 6500K target, which is not enough to make much difference visually. The gamma follows the sRGB curve loosely; dark scenes are too dark, and some bright scenes are too bright.
The FHD+'s color gamut is excellent. It has full sRGB coverage, meaning it can produce all the colors in this commonly used color space. It has great DCI P3 and Adobe RGB coverage but not enough for HDR video production or print photography. The 1000-nit IPS panel has the same color gamut, while the 3k OLED panel has full DCI P3 and Adobe RGB coverage.
The FHD+ IPS panels are entirely flicker-free, which helps reduce eye strain. The 3k OLED panel likely flickers, as most OLEDs do.
The HP Spectre has a great keyboard. The layout is fairly standard, so it's easy to get used to. Key spacing is good, but the whole keyboard could have been bigger, considering the amount of space available on the deck. The keys are stable; they wobble a bit, but not enough to affect the typing experience. They have a good amount of travel, don't require much force to actuate, and provide relatively satisfying tactile and audio feedback. You can adjust the backlight using the F4 hotkey. The backlight is white, leaning on the cooler side. Like most keyboards with light-color keycaps, the white backlighting can make the legends harder to see in well-lit settings. If this is an issue, go with the Nocturne Blue or Nightfall Black color.
The HP Spectre has a great touchpad. Size-wise, it's large but could be a tad bigger. It tracks all movements and gestures well, and there's no problem with palm rejection. It doesn't always register touches around the edges, which isn't necessarily bad, as it's where most people are more likely to accidentally touch when typing. The buttons feel satisfyingly tactile, but you can only click in the bottom half of the touchpad.
The speakers get very loud with minimal compression artifacts at max volume. They sound clear and natural, with good instrument separation and a decent amount of bass. They don't sound as full as the Apple MacBook Pro 14 (2023) but are easily among the better speakers in the Windows world.
The webcam's video quality is great. The image looks detailed and well-exposed. The colors are true to life, but the tint is slightly unnatural. Voices sound loud and clear, albeit a tad hollow. The microphone's noise canceling feature works well in removing background noise, but it's pretty aggressive and causes a 'fade in' effect when you start speaking, so the first few words might be hard to understand for the person at the other end. You can turn off this feature at the cost of more background noise during calls. There isn't a physical privacy cover; however, you can disable the camera using the key next to the power button.
The HP Spectre x360 has a good port selection. The USB-A port supports USB 3.2 Gen 2 data transfer speed (up to 10Gbps) and Sleep and Charge. The latter lets you charge a mobile device even when the laptop is in sleep mode. Both USB-Cs support Thunderbolt 4 (up to 40Gbps data transfer speed and two 4k displays at 60Hz), USB4, USB 3.2 Gen 2, DisplayPort 1.4, Power Delivery 3.0, and Sleep and Charge. Power Delivery lets you fast charge the laptop and other PD-compatible devices connected to the port.
The wireless adapter is an Intel Wi-Fi 6E AX211. Wi-Fi 6E has faster speeds, lower latency, and less signal interference than previous Wi-Fi standards. However, you need a router that supports Wi-Fi 6E to benefit from these features.
The HP Spectre x360 is available with the following CPUs:
- Intel Core i5-1335U (10 cores/12 threads, up to 4.6GHz, 12MB cache)
- Intel Core i7-1355U (10 cores/12 threads, up to 5.0GHz, 12MB cache)
Both CPUs are low-power processors typically found in thin and light productivity laptops. They both have a hybrid architecture with two performance and eight efficiency cores; the only difference is that the i7-1355U has faster clock speeds, giving you slightly better performance. These CPUs can only handle light, general productivity tasks like web browsing, text processing, video playback, spreadsheets, and presentations. If you have a more intensive workload like programming or video editing, it's best to get a laptop with a more powerful H-series CPU. You can find these high-performance CPUs in relatively thin and light laptops like the Dell XPS 15 (2023) .
The HP Spectre is only available with Intel Iris Xe. This integrated GPU can only handle light tasks like web browsing and video playback, not demanding workloads like video editing or 3D graphics. You can play some older or puzzle-like games, but you'll likely have to play at a lower resolution or with low graphical settings to get smooth gameplay.
You can configure this laptop with 8GB, 16GB, or 32GB of RAM. The memory isn't user-replaceable.
You can get this laptop with 512GB, 1TB, or 2TB of storage. The SSD is user-replaceable; the slot supports M.2 2280 PCIe Gen 4 SSDs.
The HP Spectre x360 has an overall great score in the Geekbench 5 benchmarks. The Core i5-1335U's multi-thread performance is good but worse than expected for this particular CPU, as the tuning really limits the performance to keep the laptop cool and quiet. The overall performance is still good enough for general productivity tasks, but don't expect to do anything intensive like programming or video editing. You can get slightly better performance by switching to the Performance mode in the HP Command Center app, though at the cost of louder fans. The Core i7 will only perform slightly better. As for the GPU-intensive workloads, the Intel CPU's integrated graphics perform poorly and aren't suitable for heavy computing tasks.
The Intel Core i5-1335U has strong single-thread performance, but its multi-thread performance is on the slower side. For heavy, sustained multi-threaded workloads, it's best to get a laptop with an H-series CPU, like the Lenovo Slim Pro 7 14 (2023) or the Dell XPS 15 (2023) .
The performance in Blender is mediocre. Neither the CPU nor the integrated GPU is suitable for 3D rendering. A laptop with a discrete GPU is best if you need to work in Blender. Even an entry-level model like an NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1650 Laptop GPU can render 3D images much faster. If you want even better performance, you can get a laptop with an NVIDIA RTX GPU, as the RTX models support Optix hardware acceleration, significantly boosting performance.
The HP Spectre performs poorly in the Basemark GPU benchmark. Its Intel Iris Xe integrated graphics can only handle simple, puzzle-like games or older titles at 1080p, and even then, you'll have to play at a lower resolution or with low graphics settings to get playable frame rates.
The 1TB SSD's performance is outstanding. The sequential write speed is a bit slow for a PCIe Gen 4 SSD but acceptable for a thin and light laptop designed for general productivity. The 2TB SSD is likely faster, as larger SSDs tend to perform better, while the 512GB is likely slower.
The HP Spectre x360's battery life is outstanding. You can easily get through a whole day of light use on a full charge. Models with the 3k OLED panel will have shorter battery life, likely around eight to nine hours of light use.
Borderlands 3 isn't playable. The gameplay is extremely choppy, even with low graphical settings. The CPU and integrated GPU can't handle such a demanding game. You can expect the same performance in other similar titles.
Since Civilization VI is a strategy game that doesn't require fast reaction time or precise aiming, it's perfectly playable at 30 fps, which you can get by lowering a couple of graphical settings. The turn time is long, though. Upgrading to the Core i7 won't improve the turn time significantly.
CS:GO runs poorly on the HP Spectre at 1080p with high settings. Although the average frame rate is good, the game stutters a lot due to frame drops. It runs more smoothly with low settings, but there are still noticeable stutters.
Shadow of the Tomb Raider isn't playable on the HP Spectre x360 2-in-1 at 1080p, as it's too demanding on a low-power U-series CPU and integrated graphics. The gameplay is choppy, even with low graphical settings. You can expect the same performance in other similarly demanding titles.
The keyboard is cool when idle and only gets mildly warm under load. Likewise, the fans are completely silent when performing lighter tasks and barely audible under more intense use. These are results obtained in the Smart Sense mode, which automatically adjusts the fan speed and temperature target. This feature also takes into consideration the battery status and ambient temperature. Other profiles are available in the HP Command Center app, like Balanced , Cool , Quiet , Power Saver , and Performance . The app includes a slider that lets you manually adjust the target surface temperature.
The HP Spectre's performance over time is outstanding. Neither the CPU nor the GPU gets particularly hot under load. The CPU starts throttling only a few minutes in, slowing down significantly in the first 15 minutes; however, its performance goes back up once the fans kick in and bring the temperature down.
The HP Spectre x360 has many pre-installed applications, including:
- Bang & Olufsen Audio Control: Lets you change the audio profile and tweak the EQ.
- Concepts: Sketching and drawing app.
- Dropbox promotion: Ad for Dropbox file hosting service.
- Duet Display: Software to connect and manage external displays.
- ExpressVPN: Link to virtual private network service.
- HP Command Center: Lets you tweak the laptop's performance and fan speed, optimize network performance, and view system information.
- HP Connection Optimizer: Lets you optimize your network performance.
- HP Display Control: Lets you calibrate the display and change the color profile.
- HP Documentation: User's manual.
- HP Enhanced Lighting: Adds a virtual light ring on the screen to improve lighting during video calls.
- HP Pen Control Plus: Lets you change the buttons' function on the stylus.
- HP Smart: App for HP printers.
- HP Support Assistant: Lets you access information on how to repair and diagnose issues. Also contains guided troubleshooting via a virtual assistant.
- HP System Event Utility: Lets you see the system's information and run diagnostics.
- Intel Unison: Lets you connect your smartphone to the laptop, allowing you to send and receive messages, view photos on your smartphone, and transfer files, similar to the MyPhone app.
- McAfee: Antivirus software. Requires subscription.
- myHP: Settings to optimize audio and video quality during video calls.
- OMEN Gaming Hub: Lets you access your installed games, HP rewards, and picture gallery. It also lets you see system information like CPU and GPU usage and temperatures, optimize the PC, and change the power profile.
- Solitaire & Casual Games: Solitaire, FreeCell, Spider, Mahjong, Sudoku, and other casual games.
The HP Spectre x360 has a fingerprint sensor and a facial recognition IR camera. The fingerprint sensor is next to the right Alt key. You can use either to log in quickly, authorize purchases in the Windows Store, and auto-fill saved passwords on supported websites.
This laptop supports pen input and comes with an MPP (Microsoft Pen Protocol) 2.0 stylus. It supports tilt and 4096 levels of pressure sensitivity, and it charges via USB-C. There's a slot on the laptop sleeve to store the pen for transport. The pen can attach magnetically to the side of the screen, but it isn't very secure, as the magnet is fairly weak.
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Near the top of its class —
Review: hp’s 13.5-inch spectre x360 is a top ultralight—with flair, not the top performer, but the spectre has other wins, like its 3:2 screen..
Scharon Harding - Aug 27, 2022 1:00 pm UTC
HP's 13.5-inch Spectre x360 has a little something for almost everyone. An ultralight build puts it a desirable class of convertibles with a frosted finish and flashy accents. A 3:2 screen stands taller than most and includes an OLED option that's vivid yet natural looking. There are also clever design choices, like a chamfered edge with a charging port, light-up volume/mic mute/camera shutter keys, plus decent port selection.
The Spectre x360 13.5-inch gets an A+ in looks and scores high (but not perfectly) in design details. But it has some room to grow when it comes to productivity, especially when compared against other highly capable ultralights in its price range.
For those who insist on squeezing every ounce of performance out of a sub-1-inch-thick convertible, there are stronger competitors. But for the rest, the 2022 Spectre is near the top of its class.
Table of Contents
- Battery life
- (AI-powered) webcam and more
- A note on bloat
- Near the top of its class
HP's Spectre lineup continues to feature some of the most attractive ultralights around, even if they are mildly less striking this year. The Nightfall Black color of my review unit includes accents so pale that they look more silver than the "brass" that HP describes. A thin, reflective, silver strip runs around the lid and deck, creating a layered effect when viewing the shut PC from a side. Oddly, you can even see a hint of the keyboard when viewing the closed laptop from the left or right side, so I'm a little more concerned about dust getting inside the PC when closed than I'd typically be.
Visually, the hinges pop a bit less than last year's model , which included contrasting colors across the entire spine and hinges. But, more importantly, this year's hinge keeps the screen reliably in place no matter how far I bend the lid back.
Plus, the aluminum lid was harder to bend and felt denser than that of most other ultralight laptops I've tested lately.
That paired well with an equally solid deck; however, the deck's sloped edges occasionally made my wrists slide when I typed. This may have led me to more frequently bump into the touchpad when typing, causing abrupt, distracting interferences in my workflow.
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HP Spectre x360 13.5 review: back on top
“The HP Spectre x360 13.5 has everything you could want in a high-end Windows convertible 2-in-1.”
- Elegant aesthetic
- Excellent productivity performance
- Rock-solid build
- Superior keyboard and touchpad
- Stunning OLED display
- Surprisingly good battery life
- Creativity performance is lacking
- Slightly expensive
The HP Spectre x360 has long been some of the best laptops over the years, especially in the category of convertible 2-in-1 .
Price and configurations
Ports and connectivity, performance, display and audio, keyboard and touchpad, battery life.
Last year’s 14-inch model, which was excellent, has now been rebranded as the Spectre x360 13.5, still carrying the same size screen but sporting a clean new design.
- HP’s new Envy x360 14 looks like a killer value for what you get
- Asus ZenBook S 13 Flip vs. HP Envy x360 13: it comes down to price
- HP Spectre x360 13.5 hands-on review: Refinements that matter
It’s a bit expensive, but it’s even more attractive this time around, a bonus to the improved performance and battery life. The competition has stiffened, but HP still managed to climb its way back to the top with its flagship.
I reviewed a $1,700 configuration of the Spectre x360 13.5 with a Core i7-1255U and a 13.5-inch 3:2 3000×2000 OLED display.
The Spectre x360 13.5 is available in several configurations, starting at $1,200 for a Core i5-1235U CPU, 8GB of RAM, a 512GB PCIe 4.0 SSD, and a WUXGA+ (1920 x 1280) IPS touch display. At the high end, you’ll spend $1,840 for a Core i7-1255U, 16GB of RAM, a 2TB SSD, and a 13.5-inch 3:2 3K2K (3000 x 2000) OLED display. If you want the maximum RAM, a $1,780 configuration is available with a Core i7-1255U, 32GB of RAM, a 2TB SSD, and the WUXGA+ display.
I’m not sure why HP hasn’t enabled both the maximum RAM and the OLED display, and perhaps that’s something that will change. My review configuration was $1,700 for a Core i7-1255U, 16GB of RAM, a 1TB SSD, and the OLED display.
The most pertinent competitive laptop at around the same price is the Lenovo Yoga 9i Gen 7 , although that 2-in-1 is heavily discounted and a few hundred dollars less than the Spectre. The Lenovo Yoga 7i Gen 7 is less expensive and offers the same CPU but, at the moment, no OLED display option.
The Spectre x360 14 featured HP’s dramatic gem-cut design with sharply angled edges and notches cut into the rear display and chassis corners. With its rose gold or copper accents, the 2-in-1’s aesthetic was a lovely laptop that stood apart from the crowd. HP scaled back that design with the Spectre x360 13.5, just like it did with the Spectre x360 16 , rounding off and slimming the edges and toning down the extravagance. The chassis notches remain functional, with the left hosting the 3.5mm audio jack and the right a USB-C port for keeping the charging cable out of the way.
The result is a more refined look that’s just as elegant and distinctive but not as loud. The rounded edges are also a bit more comfortable to hold in tablet mode, although not as comfortable as the even more rounded edges of the Lenovo Yoga 9i Gen 7.
My review unit sported the Nightfall Black color with brass accents, with optional Natural Silver and Nocturne Blue color schemes with matching edges. In each case, the keyboard matches the primary color. The Spectre x360 13.5’s only aesthetic equals in the 14-inch 2-in-1 crowd are the Yoga 9i Gen 7 and Yoga 7i Gen7, which have rounded and sculpted chassis that are just as attractive in their own way. I’m not saying the rest of the field is boring, exactly, but none are as attractive as these three machines.
Constructed of CNC machined recycled aluminum, the Spectre x360 13.5 is rock-solid.
Constructed of CNC machined-recycled aluminum, the Spectre x360 13.5 is also rock-solid, with no bending, flexing, or twisting anywhere in the lid, keyboard deck, or bottom chassis. It joins the best-built laptops like the Dell XPS 13 and the Lenovo Yoga 9i Gen 7. The only laptop I’ve handled that truly feels more solid is the Apple MacBook Pro 14 , and the difference is marginal. Unfortunately, the hinge is just the tiniest bit too stiff to open the lid with one hand, but it holds the display firmly in place in clamshell, tent, media, and tablet modes.
I include the Spectre x360 13.5 in the 14-inch category, but it could easily be lumped in with 13.3-inch laptops just as easily. With the taller display, though, it feels like a 14-inch machine, so that’s how I’m going to treat it. Thanks to narrow bezels and a 90% screen-to-body ratio, the Spectre x360 13.5 is a compact machine. Compared to the Yoga 9i Gen 7, the HP is almost an inch narrower and half an inch shallower, and it’s 0.67 inches thick and 3.01 pounds compared to the Yoga at 0.60 inches and 3.09 pounds.
The latest Dell XPS 13 is smaller, with the Spectre x360 13.5 being an inch wider and deeper. The XPS 13 is thinner at 0.58 inches and lighter at 2.8 pounds. That slots the Spectre x360 13.5 between the Yoga and XPS 13 in every dimension except thickness.
The Spectre x360 13.5 has decent connectivity, with two USB-C ports with Thunderbolt 4 support, a single USB-A 3.2 Gen 2 port, a microSD card reader, and a 3.5mm audio jack. That’s more than the typical 13-inch laptop but less than many 14-inch laptops that include an HDMI port. HP throws in a USB-C hub with two USB-A ports and an HDMI port, which is good to have, but it doesn’t substitute for built-in connections.
Wi-Fi 6E and Bluetooth 5.2 provide the latest in wireless connectivity.
HP opted for a lower-power CPU with the Spectre x360 13.5, specifically the 15-watt 10-core (two performance and eight Efficient), 12-thread Core i7-1255U with a Turbo Boost of 4.7GHz. The Core i5-1255U with a Turbo Boost of 4.4GHz is also available. My review unit equipped the Core i7-1255U, and it performed well compared to the other similarly equipped laptops we’ve reviewed. It was also a massive improvement over the 11th-gen Core i7-1165G7 in the Spectre x360 14. At the same time, unsurprisingly, the Spectre x360 13.5 wasn’t as fast as the Yoga 9i Gen 7 and Acer Swift 3 which were equipped with the 28-watt, 12-core (four Performance and eight Efficient), 16-thread Core i7-1260P.
I used the HP Command Center utility to test both balanced and performance modes. The utility made a significant difference in the CPU-intensive benchmarks, but I did notice that the fans were never extremely loud in either mode. HP updated the thermal design of the Spectre x360 13.5, including adopting new fans that were designed to produce less noise. They did the job. The laptop also didn’t throttle much in either mode, hitting 91 degrees C at most and spending the majority of time in the mid-70s. Given the thin chassis, I suspect HP tuned the machine to avoid generating too much heat, which likely limited performance a bit compared to laptops that are tuned to run hotter but throttle at the high end.
The Spectre x360 13.5 provided excellent productivity performance while running cool and quiet.
In the Geekbench 5 benchmark, the Spectre x360 13.5 fell behind the Lenovo Yoga 7i Gen 7 but was faster in multi-core than the Dell Inspiron 14 2-in-1 . It was well behind the Core i7-1260P machines and ahead of the Asus ZenBook S 13 OLED with a 28-watt, eight-core/16-thread AMD Ryzen 7 6800U. In our Handbrake test that encodes a 420MB video as H.265, the Spectre was the fastest among its peers and only slightly behind the higher-watt laptops (in performance mode). In Cinebench R23, the Spectre x360 13.5 was in line with its peers, again in performance mode but well behind the faster machines. Finally, in PCMark 10 Complete, which tests a variety of productivity, multimedia, and creative tasks, the Spectre was competitive with the rest of the comparison group.
Overall, the Spectre x360 13.5 provided excellent productivity performance while running cool and quiet, but as with other laptops with the same CPU, it fell behind in creative tasks. It’s significantly faster than Intel’s previous generation, though, and can tackle some lightweight creative work in a pinch. As we’ll see in the battery life section, the Spectre leveraged the lower-watt CPU’s efficiency better than the other laptops I’ve reviewed.
The Spectre x360 13.5 scored about as expected in the 3DMark Time Spy test, with its score in performance mode being at the top end of the class. Of course, the laptop is limited to Intel’s Iris Xe and won’t be able to play modern titles at anything except 1080p and low graphics. I couldn’t get Fortnite to install, so I couldn’t test the Spectre’s performance in our go-to game for integrated graphics. I’m sure, though, that it wouldn’t have performed any better than other Iris Xe machines.
As usual, the Spectre x360 13.5’s 13.5-inch 3:2 OLED display was gorgeous from the second I fired it up. It’s sharp enough at a resolution of 3000 x 2000 and colorful and bright with deep, inky blacks. HP also offers a WUXGA+ (1920 x 1280) IPS display and a WUXGA+ display with HP’s privacy screen.
My colorimeter loved this display. It was bright at 380 nits, above our 300-nit standard, and bright enough for any indoor setting. Its colors were wide at 100% of sRGB and 97% of AdobeRGB and incredibly accurate with a DeltaE of 0.61 (1.0 or less is indistinguishable to the human eye). And its contrast hit the OLED standard at 28,230:1. The three OLED displays in the comparison group were almost equal in quality, with the Spectre having the widest and most accurate colors.
Whether you’re doing productivity work, binging Netflix, or working with images and video, you’ll love this display. And it’s not just the brightness, colors, and contrast but also the aspect ratio, which at 3:2 is the closest to a physical piece of paper in portrait mode and thus optimal for tablet use.
Four downward-firing speakers provide plenty of volumes, with crisp and clean mids and highs. There’s not a lot of bass, and so the Spectre x360 13.5’s audio can’t keep up with the best around, Apple’s MacBooks. Still, the audio is good enough for binging Netflix and listening to the occasional tune. Of course, audiophiles will still prefer a good pair of headphones .
HP’s Spectre line has long offered some of the best keyboards in Windows laptops, with only Apple’s latest MacBook Pro Magic Keyboard being better. That remains true with the Spectre x360 13.5, although the keyboard isn’t exactly the same as previous models.
Interestingly, HP dropped the convenient row of navigation keys along the right-hand side, which I miss, but I appreciate the extra key spacing. The keycaps are also large, making for a very efficient layout. As before, the switches are light and snappy with a precise bottoming action. It’s one of the most comfortable keyboards I’ve used for long typing sessions. One nit to pick is that HP dropped the right Ctrl key in favor of a fingerprint reader.
The touchpad is large and takes up most of the space on the palm rest, which is larger than usual thanks to the taller 3:2 display. The touchpad surface is smooth and provides a precise surface for Windows 11’s multitouch gestures, and the buttons have a nice click without being too loud. Outside of Apple’s Force Touch touchpad or Dell’s haptic touchpad on the XPS 13 Plus , it’s one of the best touchpads you’ll find.
The display is touch-enabled, of course, and supports HP’s active pen that’s included in the box. I found the pen’s Windows Ink support to be excellent thanks to 4,096 levels of pressure sensitivity and tilt support, and it conveniently attaches magnetically to the right side of the display. The pen charges via USB-C, which is another convenience.
Windows 11 Hello passwordless login is supported by an infrared camera, facial recognition, and the fingerprint reader mentioned previously. Both methods worked quickly and reliably.
HP has outfitted the Spectre x360 13.5 with a 5MP webcam that provides a high-resolution image, and several software tools optimize the videoconferencing experience. HP Presence provides Auto Frame to keep the user’s face in view as they move around the office during a call, Backlight Adjustment that ensures consistent lighting no matter the ambient environment, and Appearance Filter that smooths out blemishes that other webcams might highlight. Several audio enhancements also improve the experience, including directional beamforming mics and bi-directional AI noise reduction.
There’s a key to electronically close a physical shutter over the webcam, along with a key to turn off the microphones. That provides for some extra privacy.
The Spectre x360 13.5 has 66 watt-hours of battery capacity, a slight decrease from the previous generation’s 67 watt-hours. That’s a fair amount, more than the Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Yoga Gen 7’s 57 watt-hours but less than the Yoga 9i Gen 7’s 75 watt-hours. Both the Spectre and Yoga 9i used power-hungry OLED displays, and so I was looking forward to seeing if HP managed to exploit the lower-watt CPU’s presumed efficiency advantage.
According to our suite of benchmarks, HP did something right — the Spectre x360 13.5 lasted surprisingly long in our suite of battery tests. Looking back at the performance section, it’s clear that HP tuned the laptop to run more efficiently in balanced mode at the expense of performance. That’s a reasonable tradeoff, with the Spectre being more than fast enough for typical productivity tasks while achieving excellent battery life.
In our web browsing test, for example, it lasted for 10 hours, which is an excellent score, particularly for a laptop with an OLED display. The Spectre made it to 11 hours in the PCMark 10 Applications battery test, which is the best predictor of battery life running a typical (i.e., non-demanding) productivity workflow. And in our video test that loops a local 1080p movie trailer, it lasted for 14 hours, another strong showing given the OLED display. The only laptop in our comparison group that competed with the Spectre x360 13.5 in all but the web browsing test, where it was almost three hours behind, was the Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Yoga Gen 7, and it benefitted from a low-power Full HD+ IPS display.
You don’t often get OLED quality and long battery life, but the Spectre x360 13.5 delivers. You should be able to work for a full day of typical productivity tasks and maybe even have a little time left over.
The Spectre x360 13.5 is precisely what HP needed to produce to follow up on the success of the Spectre x360 14. The new 2-in-1 is faster, offers significantly better battery life, has a more refined look, and retains the excellent keyboard and touchpad of the previous model.
I’m giving the Spectre x360 13.5 a 9/10 score, one notch less than the Spectre x360 14, not because the update isn’t as good. It’s because the competition has gotten so much better. HP’s latest regains its spot as the best convertible 2-in-1, but the gap between it and the next best isn’t quite so large.
Are there any alternatives?
The strongest alternative is the Lenovo Yoga 9i Gen 7. It’s just as good-looking, as well built, and slightly faster. But its battery life isn’t nearly as good, and its keyboard and touchpad are a step behind. It’s a little less expensive, though, and so makes for a solid choice.
If you don’t need a 2-in-1, then Dell’s new XPS 13 Plus is an attractive option. It’s faster and enjoys its own stunning new design, incorporating innovations like an excellent haptic touchpad. You’ll spend about the same money and get a clamshell that’s among the best available today.
My final recommendation is the Apple MacBook Air M2 . It’s equally solid, if not slightly more so, it offers better performance and battery life, and its display is excellent even if not quite up to OLED standards. You’ll spend around the same money, and the MacBook is a compelling alternative if you’re okay with MacOS.
How long will it last?
The Spectre x350 13.5 is incredibly well-built and will last for years, which its modern components will also support. The industry-standard one-year warranty is a disappointment, as always.
Should you buy it?
Yes. Solid productivity performance and excellent battery life in a nicely sized, thin and light 2-in-1 with a spectacular OLED display — what’s not to like?
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