HP's premium additions slimmed down, powered up
Having renewed its focus on premium design with what was (briefly) the world's thinnest laptop, HP has given its high-end Spectre lineup a refresh. The new Envy 27 all-in-one, Envy 13.3 laptop and Spectre x360 convertible marry slim, attractive designs with high-end performance.
Envy AIO 27
Like a high-end television, HP envisions the Envy 27 as the focal point of a large family room. That means it has been designed to stand out, rather than blending into the background. All of the computing hardware, which would usually sit in the all-in-one's display, has been integrated into the base for a slimmer 4K IPS 27-inch screen. And there's a Bang & Olufsen sound bar built into the design, too.
Buyers are able to choose from the latest generation quad-core Intel i5 or i7 processors supported by up to 16 GB of DDR4 system memory. For those keen to play the latest games without annoying lag, there's an optional Nvidia GTX950M graphics card coupled with 4 GB of GDDR5 video RAM.
Users are able to connect up another display using an HDMI output, or plug in an optical media player or laptop to use the all-in-one as a dumb monitor. USB-C connectivity has also been built in, along with a bunch of USB 3 connectors.
Storage is handled by a hybrid SSD/HDD system, with options stretching up to a 256 GB/2 TB combination. Available from this month, pricing will start at US$1,299.
Designed to blend high-end design with a reasonable pricetag, the 14-mm (0.55-in) thick Envy 13.3 is actually slightly thicker than the model it replaces. According to HP, that's a trade-off worth making, because it allows space for a bigger battery, which offers 14 hours on a single charge. The new Envy 13.3 makes use of a special fast charger to replenish that battery to 90 percent capacity in just 90 minutes.
Depending on the spec chosen, the 13.3-inch screen is either a regular full-HD panel or a touchscreen QHD display, both of which stretch from edge-to-edge for a clean look. When it's open, the hinge of the screen props the keyboard up at a more natural typing angle, which should please people who don't like the flat, chiclet keyboards on modern laptops.
Solid state storage up to 1 TB is available, and the range-topping Envy 13.3 gets 16 GB of RAM along with an Intel i7 processor. Lower spec models will be powered by an Intel i5. All variants of the laptop come with a USB-C port, along with two USB 3.0 outlets.
The Envy 13.3 will also be available this month, pricing kicks off at $849.99.
The Spectre x360 is a refined take on the folding concept it launched last year, with a bigger battery offering up 15 hours on a single charge, and optimized software for use with the latest Intel Core i5 and i7 processors.
The new x360 is slimmer than the model it replaces, too. A new display shaves 10 mm (0.4 in) from each side, and the redesigned hinge makes the new 13.8 mm (0.54 in) body ever-so-slightly thinner than before. HP has also managed to lighten the load by 160 grams (0.35 lb).
Solid-state storage up to 1 TB is available and, despite its svelte design, the new HP convertible includes two USB-C ports and a regular USB 3.0 connector.
The x360 is available from today, prices start at $1,049.99.