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There’s no denying that stylish design was a top priority for the designers of the HP Spectre x360 15t: this convertible laptop looks insanely good. But with computers, it’s what’s inside that counts. While the Spectre x360 does have some nice features, its flaws ultimately hold it back from being listed in the top 3 spots like our other lists for the best 2 in 1 laptops, the best laptop, and the best SSD laptop.
There’s no question that a well-designed piece of equipment is immediately eye-catching. The HP Spectre x360 15t is a laptop with style and finesse, and it has many high-powered features and specs to boot.
The WLED display on the HP Spectre x360 15t is sharp and bright, though it can’t compete with an OLED display like that on the Dell XPS 15 2 in 1. While you absolutely can run some games on this laptop, they won’t look or sound as good as they would on other, more gaming-specific devices. Higher-end computers often have issues with heat, and the Spectre x360 is no exception: when running more intensive programs, the bottom of the laptop can get especially hot, making it rather uncomfortable for lap use. Several reviewers agree that this laptop is super fast, due both to the Intel Core i7 processor and SSD.
What HP sacrificed in terms of display quality absolutely makes up for in improved battery life. When HP released a 4k OLED display version of this computer last year, reviewers were quick to notice that the Spectre x360 couldn’t even last three hours on a single charge. Thankfully, that is remedied by the less-powerful display, and this version lasts just under eight hours. While this is a great improvement, this battery life is still dwarfed by that on the Lenovo Yoga C940 and the Dell XPS 13 9365. You may also want to check out our HP Stream 14 Laptop review for a laptop with a nice battery life.
When it comes to ports, the HP Spectre x360 15t doesn’t offer the most options, but it’s definitely better than some other 2 in 1 laptops. This computer has one USB A port, two USB C ports, an HDMI port, an audio jack, and a microSD card reader. As several reviewers point out, it would be nice to have a second USB A port; however, this isn’t a dealbreaker for most. HP offers several upgrades, like the aforementioned OLED display or a Max Q graphics card, so this computer is fairly customizable to your individual needs.
As previously mentioned, the HP Spectre x360 15t was designed with style in mind. Both the Dark Ash and Poseidon Blue housings are sleek and look both fun and professional, though they do tend to show fingerprints prominently. This 15 inch laptop, though technically a 2 in 1, is kind of big and bulky to hold for extended periods in tablet mode: smaller versions don’t face this issue. The keyboard provides a great level of tactile feedback, but some reviewers did find the trackpad required a bit more friction to work better. Though not necessarily an issue, the power button is somewhat hidden on the back, left of the chassis.
Related: Be sure to also take a look at our HP Spectre X360 13T review.
Considering that the HP Spectre x360 15t is supposed to be an alternative to the MacBook pro truly puts the price into perspective. This isn’t a cheap computer by any means, but it still offers similar specs to MacBook Pro for about $500 less. Keep in mind, this laptop can run games, but it absolutely is not a gaming laptop. Most games show significant lag, framerate drops, and screen tearing when running them at high settings and in 4k, so you’ll be limited to the types of games you can play on here. Given the sleek chassis design, it seems clear that this machine is built for professionals who don’t have the same power demands for their laptops.
There’s no doubt about it: the HP Spectre x360 15t is a beautiful, but flawed, laptop. The battery life shows a marked improvement over previous models, but it still lags behind many less-expensive 2 in 1s. The lack of a second USB A port is rather annoying, but not a dealbreaker, though the excessive heat on the bottom of this laptop could be depending on where you plan to use it. Otherwise, though, this laptop performs exceptionally well when used for creative and professional purposes and has a good display.
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