HP Spectre X360 (2019, 8NS97AV_1) Review

Kenny Trinh Updated on September 28, 2020
HP Spectre X360 (2019, 8NS97AV_1) Review

Editor’s Rating: 9/10

A great 2-in-1 laptop that’s made even better with a perfect combination of design, weight, and performance.

HP Spectre X360
If you’re looking for the best 2-in-1 laptop that has an exceptionally thin and lightweight design, as well as decent power you can use for work, some minor editing, and even light gaming, then the HP Spectre X360 is your laptop. It can get a bit hot at times and the sound quality can be better, but these are all just minor inconveniences. Even with a hefty price tag, it still provides great value for money with the features and flexibility that this portable laptop can offer.

The Good

A beautifully designed laptop that is slim and lightweight without too much compromise in functionality and performance. An updated powerful CPU makes it a good choice for everyday work, a bit of entertainment, and light editing.

The Bad

This model can get a bit hot during extended use. It is also not the most affordable portable laptop in the market.

Detailed Review of HP Spectre X360 (2019, 8NS97AV_1)

Can an already great laptop become even better?

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The answer is yes it is possible and that’s what HP did with the Spectre X360. The company retained everything good about the 2-in-1 laptop and then added new features that make it one of the best HP laptops in the market.

With Intel’s 10th Gen processor and an updated chassis for a thinner and sleeker design, the HP Spectre X360 is now packed with more power, richer features, and better overall design. It does have a few compromises, but it doesn’t overshadow what this portable laptop brings to the table.

HP Spectre X360 Configuration In Review

Processor: Intel Core i7-1065G7 (up to 3.9GHz with Turbo Boost) | RAM: 8GB LPDDR4 | Storage: 512GB PCle/SSD + 32GB Optane | Graphics: Intel Iris Plus Graphics | Display: 13.3” Full HD touch screen, 1920 x 1080 pixels resolution | Operating System: Windows 10 Home | Battery Life: 10 Hours | Weight: 2.87 lbs | Other Features: Backlit keyboard, Fingerprint reader, Wireless AX

One Of The Best Looking Laptop With Great Functions

Let’s now look deeply at what makes this one of the best, if not the best portable laptop available in the market.

One of the things that will stand out the most when you look at the updated HP Spectre X360 is its design. It now has a smaller footprint without sacrificing the overall display size and this is due to HP almost completely eliminating the top and bottom bezels. 

This makes the Spectre X360 one of the most magnificently-looking laptops on the market because of its almost non-existent bezels. The thin bezels also make the 13.3-inch display size bigger than it looks.

…it didn’t skimp out on functionality just to provide a thin laptop with great designs…

The laptop also comes with a matching silver deck and keyboards with a precisely cut touchpad. The silver finish also adds to the laptop’s overall stunning beauty. If you prefer a darker colored laptop, the Spectre X360 also has an equally beautiful Nightfall black and Poseidon blue finish.

This laptop is also thin, at only 0.7 inches thick, and has great flexible hinges that allow you to position the laptop in a tent, studio, or tablet mode. The hinges are also sturdy and durable enough that we didn’t encounter issues, even after we applied a bit of force in the different setups.

But what’s great is that it didn’t skimp out on functionality just to provide a thin laptop with great designs. The HP Spectre X360 features a touch screen display, either in 4K OLED or 1080p, and several ports, including a full USB-A port.

You just need to lift the laptop a few inches off the table since it uses a drop jaw mechanism to fit a full USB-A port. It also has 2 Thunderbolt 3 ports and a microSD card slot on the right side, and a headphone mic/jack on the left. This is really one of the best 13-inch laptops you can find.

An All-Around Performer

Aside from the updated design, the HP Spectre X360 also got a power boost, as well as new graphics. 

With the 10th Gen Intel Core i7-1065G7 and 8GB of RAM (can go up to 16GB), the Spectre X360 performs well during everyday tasks. We didn’t have any issues browsing the internet, even with many tabs open, as well as streaming videos. 

The laptop also performed well while doing various work tasks like writing and editing documents, and doing minor graphics or video editing. You will have some issues, though, with more complex editing that requires intense software. But other than that, this is one of the best i7 laptops you can find.

The HP Spectre X360 also sports the Intel Iris Plus. It’s not the best graphics card and it won’t make the Spectre X360 one of the best gaming laptops. But it is an upgrade over the UHD graphics used in many portable laptops. With these graphics, you can play many slightly older games that don’t have demanding graphics.

You can still play the latest AAA titles, but it will require a drastic decrease in the resolution settings of the game. It’s a needed compromise, otherwise, the game won’t run properly. 

Exceptional Battery Life 

With a power boost and improved graphics, as well as a smaller chassis, you’d think this laptop would have shorter battery life. But that’s not the case as it provided us with more than 10 hours of battery life for an entire day of work.

…only needs more than an hour to reach 100% battery capacity…

The battery life can even reach up to 13 hours, if your activity is not that strenuous, allowing you to focus on your work without worrying about finding an outlet. This makes it a great portable laptop to use outside since battery life won’t be much of a concern.

However, the battery life does drop by 2-3 hours if you will be doing more activities on the laptop like some editing work, a bit of video streaming, and some gaming as well.  In case you need to charge, the Spectre X360 also charges fast. It only needs more than an hour to reach 100% battery capacity.

Of course, all of these improvements, despite the small chassis, do have some trade-offs that could cause minor inconveniences.

With a thin laptop, the HP Spectre X360 only houses two small fans at the base to provide cooling. These fans are relatively quiet, which is great, but it can’t really keep the laptop cool during prolonged or intense use.

The heat is not that concerning, but it can get uncomfortable, especially if the laptop is on your lap. Another casualty of the design is that the speakers were moved to the bottom of the laptop. It’s still loud enough to provide good sounds but don’t expect great quality audio, especially in large rooms.

The minuscule webcam also doesn’t provide good quality images. Expect pictures or even videos to have much visual noise. An external webcam is recommended if you want good quality images or videos.

But as mentioned earlier, these are just minor inconveniences. The HP Spectre X360’s great features far outweigh whatever issues you might experience.

Critics Review

TechRadar Rating: 5/5

The HP Spectre x360 is now more powerful and feature-rich than ever. Rocking an impressive brand-new processor, the Intel Core i7-1065G7, which is an absolute powerhouse of a chip, as well as the flashy new Iris Plus integrated graphics and a RAM that’s doubled, the HP Spectre x360 can contend with its big and bulky peers rocking discrete graphics cards. 

LaptopMag Rating: 4.5/5

Few laptops come as close to being perfect as the Spectre x360. Updated with Intel’s 10th Gen processors and a modernized chassis, the Spectre x360 takes everything we loved about its predecessor and ramps it up. It starts with the laptop’s design, which is more stunning than ever thanks to thinner display bezels and smaller footprint. Other highlights include a bright, vivid display and the Spectre x360’s epic, 13-plus hours of battery life. 

Buy It If…

It’s not easy to find the best 2-in-1 laptop in the market because of the different compromises you have to deal with in having a laptop and tablet in 1. But the HP Spectre X360 comes close to perfect with its blend of stunning and flexible design and powerful performance.

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It’s the best laptop for people who need an everyday device for work, entertainment, and some light editing that is flexible enough to take anywhere and functions as a tablet as well.

Don’t Buy It If…

Despite being the best 2-in-1 laptop in the market, it still can’t do everything. This is not the ideal laptop if you need a device to do heavy-duty editing or intense gaming since the components are not built for that.

It’s also not the ideal portable laptop if you are on a tight budget since this is a high-end device. The specs and features do make it up for the expensive price, but there are cheaper options that can also provide the same features and functionality.

HP Spectre X360 (2019, 8NS97AV_1) Alternatives

There are other options available in case the HP Spectre X360 is not for you. Here are some of the things we can suggest:

Verdict

HP Spectre X360
If you’re looking for the best 2-in-1 laptop that has an exceptionally thin and lightweight design, as well as decent power you can use for work, some minor editing, and even light gaming, then the HP Spectre X360 is your laptop. It can get a bit hot at times and the sound quality can be better, but these are all just minor inconveniences. Even with a hefty price tag, it still provides great value for money with the features and flexibility that this portable laptop can offer.

Do you need a laptop model that functions properly while doing heavy-duty video editing? You can check out our list of the best laptops for video editing here.

Kenny Trinh
Article by:
Kenny Trinh
Editor @ Netbooknews. While he’s not editing articles on the latest tech trends, he likes to discuss business and entrepreneur tips and tricks which featured Forbes and other places.

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