HP Envy x360 13

A DE­SIR­ABLE, REA­SON­ABLY-PRICED, SLEEK-LOOK­ING ULTRAPORTABLE WITH SOME NIFTY FEA­TURES

PC & Tech Authority - - REVIEWS INTRO - NICK ROSS

HP’s mar­ket­ing ma­te­rial raves about HP’s rst 13-inch note­book-tablet combo. In con­junc­tion with AMD’s gush­ing claims about per­for­mance and bat­tery life, we were ex­pect­ing the real deal. But is this x360 13 re­ally enough to in­spire a deadly sin?

At 1.3KG there’s no mis­tak­ing the Envy’s ultraportable na­ture. That’s an im­pres­sively slight frame to be sport­ing a 13-inch Full HD dis­play. It looks classy and feels solid too. There’s min­i­mal ex in the screen al­though it can wob­ble on the hinges a bit if you type too vig­or­ously. It’s coated with Corn­ing’s su­per-tough Go­rilla Glass which should pro­tect it well. It does a good job of re­pelling nger­prints to boot which is al­ways very use­ful for a touch­screen. The glass ex­tends well above and below the screen but this makes for a nice de­sign our­ish – just note that it’s all very glossy.

The Full HD im­age is crisp and clear with text but also with mov­ing im­ages. While colours don’t pop quite as much as with the best ri­vals, video still looks very vi­brant and smooth. De­spite the diminu­tive chas­sis, the Bang & Olufsen-tuned speak­ers sound im­pres­sively punchy and we liked watch­ing movies on this de­vice.

Above the screen is a rather dis­ap­point­ing HD web cam­era which doesn’t feel very sharp at all – this will be more of an is­sue in tablet mode when tak­ing pic­tures. How­ever, the dual-ar­ray dig­i­tal mi­cro­phones do mean that au­dio when web con­fer­enc­ing sounds crisp and clear.

The key­board has large, low­travel, back­lit keys which are very comfy to type on and the track­pad is re­spon­sive enough. The low­travel keys mean that they don’t in­trude much when you fold the screen all the way round to the back to en­gage tablet mode. As a tablet it works well and the in­cluded sty­lus is re­spon­sive. We’d com­plain that the slim bezel meant that we con­tin­u­ally, ac­ci­den­tally closed Win­dows that we were work­ing within, but maybe that’s just our own clum­si­ness?

In­side re­sides a 2GHz AMD Ryzen 5 Mo­bile 2500U CPU. This is a quad-core pro­ces­sor with eight threads and a Turbo boost up to 3.6GHz. As with many mod­ern ul­tra­porta­bles, there’s only 8GB of RAM but this is coun­tered by the speedy per­for­mance of the 256GB NVMe hard drive. It ies along in gen­eral use and scored a very-re­spectable 3,374 in PCMark 10 which puts it in more-pow­er­fulthan-most-of ce-PCs ter­ri­tory. It’s no gam­ing ma­chine though, even de­spite AMD’s rav­ings about the Vega graph­ics – it failed to run any of our 3DMark tests in­clud­ing the very­low end Cloud Gate test which rep­re­sents older games. Note that it doesn’t take much for the fans to spin up – they make an un­ob­tru­sive audi­ble whoosh.

HP boasts of bat­tery life last­ing over 11 hours. How­ever, it only played our Full HD movie for four hours 20 min­utes and ran PCMark 8’s bat­tery test for three hours 48 min­utes (the lat­ter at 85 per cent of the plugged-in score). You’d have to dial ev­ery­thing down to min­i­mum set­tings and only per­form ba­sic tasks to come close to dou­bling longevity. How­ever, it’s worth not­ing that HP’s fastcharge tech­nol­ogy means that it can charge to 50 per cent in 45 min­utes which (while not light­ning quick) is rea­son­ably fast.

Con­nec­tiv­ity in­cludes a USB

3.1 Type-C con­nec­tor which is com­pat­i­ble with HDMI 2 and Dis­playPort 1.4. A USB 3.1 Type-A port sits on ei­ther side of the chas­sis. There’s also a 3.5mm au­dio jack plus a mi­croSD card reader slot.

Our ver­sion has a prod­uct code of ag0014AU and costs $1,799 with avail­abil­ity from ei­ther Har­vey Nor­man or HP di­rectly. A lesser $1,499 vari­ant can be had from the web­site and JB HiFi. The war­ranty is one year Re­turn To Base.

There’s much to like about this Envy but it doesn’t blow us away. None­the­less, it’s good value and, de­spite cost­ing un­der two grand, the sleek looks and solid build make it feel very much like a de­sir­able, pre­mium note­book.

KEY SPECS

2GHz AMD Ryzen 5 Mo­bile 2500U CPU • 8GB DDR4-2400 SDRAM • AMD Radeon Vega 8 GPU • 256GB NVMe SSD • 13in 1,080 x 1,920 dis­play • HD we­b­cam • 1x USB 3.1 Type-C • 2 x USB 3.1 Type-A • Mi­croSD card reader • 3.5mm au­dio jack • 1yr RTB War­ranty $1,799 • www.hp.com.au

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