HP’s Spectre x360 13.5-inch 2-in-1 Laptop 14 is a very capable 2-in-1 device. Easily switched between tablet and laptop mode, it boasts decent performance capabilities, a battery that will last most of the day, and the screen quality is industry leading.
Boasting an OLED 3,000 x 2,000 resolution screen, the device looks great – whether you’re watching movies or working: everything is colourful, vibrant and sharp. Yes, the refresh rate is a bit disappointing, capped at 60Hz, but the quality of the OLED more than makes up for that.
To get the most out of this screen, you need a battery to match, and the Spectre x360 doesn’t disappoint. Throughout our testing, we were able to get around 16 hours of use with normal usage – it’s brilliant.
Both of these features – the screen and the battery – are market-leading for 2-in-1 devices. However, they come at a premium. The Spectre x360 is very expensive. Significantly more expensive than similarly-specced competitors. And we also have to consider tablet-first devices that come with detachable keyboards.
At $4,399, the Spectre x360 is a costly complete package, and that’s without addons like a Stylus.
If you’re looking for a 2-in-1 device, you’ll love the Spectre x360; however, you’ll need to make sure you can afford it first. There are cheaper alternatives out there.
- Brilliant OLED display
- 16-hour battery
- Works well as both a tablet and a laptop
- Decent performance capabilities
- Sleek, compact design
- 60Hz screen
- A lot of bloatware
Our review version of the Spectre x360 boasts a 12th Gen Intel Core i7-1255U processor, 16GB of RAM, a 512GB SSD and a 60Hz, 3,000 x 2,000 resolution display. This costs $4,399, which makes it a very expensive 2-in-1.
In comparison, the 14-inch Lenovo Yoga 9i with a 12th Gen Intel Core i7-1260P processor, 16GB of RAM, a 512GB SSD and a 60Hz, 4K display costs $3,826 and includes a Lenovo Precision Pen stylus.
The Microsoft Surface Pro 9 with a 12th Gen Intel Core i7 processor, 16GB of RAM, a 512GB SSD, and a 120Hz, 2880 x 1920 resolution display costs $3,948. And that’s with a Surface Pro Signature Keyboard with Slim Pen 2 included.
The Spectre x360 is sleek. It’s light and compact, has a premium feel, and looks good overall.
The 2-in-1 comes in three colours, Nightfall Black, Poseidon Blue and Natural Silver. All of these look nice, and there’s a good range of options varying between flashier and more subtle colours.
At 1.3kgs, I would categorise this as an ultraportable 2-in-1. It’s light and easy to carry. It’s also compact at 29.79cm x 22.04 cm x 1.7 cm.
It boasts a 13.5-inch display which is ideal for an ultraportable. It does mean that it feels big when in tablet mode. As a comparison, the Apple iPad Pro is only 12.9 inches, and that felt big.
The Spectre x360 isn’t as nice to use in tablet mode as a dedicated tablet, like an iPad, is. You can feel the keyboard underneath when holding it.
The Spectre x360 has just enough ports to satisfy most needs. There’s a USB-A port, two USB-C Thunderbolt 4 ports, a microSD slot and a headphone jack. On the back corners of the laptop, the edges have been diagonally cut off and replaced with a USB-C port and the headphone jack. It’s a unique take on the placement of ports, and it works well. You can easily switch between tablet and laptop mode without the charger getting in the way if you have it plugged in.
One design feature that isn’t ideal is the keyboard’s power button, which doesn’t work when the device is in tablet mode. You’d think you could flip it over, press the power button, and it would turn on. That is not the case. You must put it back into laptop mode and then use the button. Not ideal for those wanting to use the x360 mainly as a tablet.
Fortunately, the 2-in-1 supports Windows Hello facial recognition, so you can wake it up via the built-in camera in both laptop and tablet mode. There’s a fingerprint scanner at the bottom right of the keyboard as well.
The box also comes with a protective leather sleeve to put the device in when on the go. It’s a nice touch.
The Spectre x360 boasts an OLED display with a 3,000 x 2,000 resolution – HP calls this 3K2K – and a 60Hz refresh rate. It’s a lovely screen. Colours are vibrant and crisp, and images are sharp. The OLED screen-lighting is the standout here. There’s a noticeable difference going from a non-OLED screen to an OLED one. It looks richer, the blacks are deeper, and everything feels lusher.
The display is capped at a maximum of 60Hz. This is a bit disappointing as the smoothness of a 120Hz screen, or even a 90Hz screen, is something I’m now familiar with. Going back to 60Hz is jarring. That said, an ultraportable is supposed to be used for less intensive tasks and there wasn’t much I was doing on the Spectre x360 where I needed a 90 or 120Hz refresh rate.
It’s a 13.5-inch display with a 3:2 aspect ratio. This means there’s more vertical space than horizontal, and it’s great. It’s easier to work on whether you’re surfing the web, writing an article or scrolling spreadsheets; the verticality makes it much more manageable. It’s got to the point where I look for this on a laptop.
The bezels around the outside aren’t the thinnest I’ve seen, but they’re unobtrusive. You’ll only notice them if you go looking for them. The Spectre x360 has a respectable 90% screen-to-body ratio.
The display boasts a maximum of 400 nits brightness. This isn’t the best, but it’s sufficient. You may struggle to see the screen in direct sunlight, though.
Being a 2-in-1, this is, of course, a touch screen, and it’s very good. Touch inputs are responsive and accurate, and even when trying to input small commands like closing a webpage, it registers correctly. I didn’t have any problems with latency or lag.
It also does a very good job of recognising which mode I had the 2-in-1 in. It quickly flipped from laptop to tablet mode without hiccups.
Usually, this isn’t something I prioritise in a laptop; however, the camera on the Spectre x360 is very good.
You can set it to one of three high-res aspect ratios, 16:9 2,560 x 1,440, 4:3 2,560 x 1,920 or 3:2 2.560 x 1,706.
It supports backlighting correction, appearance filters and auto framing, which allows you to move around while the camera keeps you in the centre of the shot.
It’s nice to see some features added here, as the camera is often a forgotten feature with minimal improvements year after year.
Our Geekbench 5 scores showed the Spectre x360 and its 12th Gen Intel Core i7-1255U processor achieving a single-core score of 1,546 and a multi-core score of 7,055.
This is slightly less than the scores achieved by the 13-inch M1 MacBook Pro (2020), which achieved a single-core score of 1707 and a multi-core score of 7390.
It’s respectable and will allow you to do almost anything you can expect on an ultraportable, however, the M1 MacBook Pro is now two years old and still boasts better scores.
If you’re looking for an ultraportable for surfing the web, making spreadsheets or writing documents, you’ll be able to do that with the Spectre x360. But it may struggle with highly intensive tasks like 4K video editing.
HP Command Centre/Bloatware
The HP Command Centre is in-built software used to optimise your device.
You can change between different power modes like Performance, Balanced, Battery Saver and Quiet, you can monitor and alter your fan speed, and you can monitor temperatures.
A dedicated key on the top row of the keyboard can open Command Centre. It’s easy to use and is effective. For someone a little less computer savvy, it’s significantly more straightforward than a program like MSI Afterburner.
The laptop comes with an annoying amount of bloatware. There’s an ExpressVPN trial, Adobe Creative Cloud, McAfee LiveSafe antivirus, and LastPass, and that’s just the third-party programs. You also get HP’s Photo Match, QuickDrop and others.
Undoubtedly, some of these programs are useful, mainly the HP ones, but having to go through and uninstall all the ones I didn’t want was a bit tedious. It also slowed down startup times.
The keyboard and mouse pad are standard affairs. There isn’t anything to make them stand out. They do the job, and that’s fine.
The keyboard is membrane-based, so tactile clicking isn’t present here. It’s well spread out and comfortable to use, and the keys are brightly lit by customisable backlighting. Being an ultraportable, there’s no Numpad here.
The mousepad is accurate and responsive. It’s large enough to use easily and is positioned so that my palm doesn’t rest on it. It’s fine.
The battery capabilities here are excellent. Boasting close to 16 hours of use on a single charge, it’s up there with the best of the best.
Battery use will differ based on what you’re doing with the laptop. Higher brightness will use the battery quicker, but generally, we were impressed by the battery capabilities of the Spectre x360, especially with its OLED screen.
It charges via a USB-C port and supports fast charging, giving you around 50% battery after around 50 minutes of charging.
HP’s Spectre x360 13.5-inch 2-in-1 Laptop 14 is a very good, albeit a very expensive, 2-in-1. It’s compact and light enough to be used as an ultraportable, it boasts impressive performance capabilities and works well both as a tablet and as a laptop.
The highlights here are the “3K2K” OLED display and the battery life. The screen is incredibly vibrant, with deep blacks and sharp edges. Everything looks great. The battery life is equally as impressive, boasting 16 hours on a single charge which is fantastic for an OLED device.
The refresh rate is a bit disappointing – capped at 60Hz – and the bloatware can be annoying, but the main hiccup here is the price. This is a costly device.
At $4,399, it’s almost $500 more expensive than similarly specced competitors. It also pays to remember it’s not only competing with 2-in-1s. Tablets like the iPad come with more than capable detachable keyboards, and when an iPad Pro (2022) only costs $3,608 with a keyboard, you can start to see how expensive the Spectre x360 is.
With that said, if you’re looking for a Windows-based 2-in-1 and can afford it, the Spectre x360 is hard to beat. It’s functional and performs brilliantly.