New HP Spectre x360 15 puts pedal to the metal with CPU and GPU upgrades

HP Spectre x360 15

Over at CES 2018, HP has taken the wraps off a refreshed Spectre x360 15, with the convertible getting some solid extra pep on the performance front.

The additional grunt comes from the introduction of two of Intel’s latest processors. First, the 8th-gen Core i7-8550U – alongside juicing up the GPU from a GeForce 940 MX to a current-gen (Pascal) GeForce MX 150 with 2GB of video memory.

Then, an Intel Core i7-8705G version is available – yes, the one with Radeon RX Vega M discrete graphics embedded in the chip housing and up to 2TB of NVMe M.2 SSD storage

System RAM remains the same at 16GB for both models, though storage differs between both models: a 512GB PCIe SSD for the MX 150 model and up to 2TB of NVMe M.2 SSD space for the AMD Radeon RX Vega M model. There’s no real need for any upgrades in either case, at least on the performance front.

As with its predecessor, the refreshed convertible, which utilizes a 360-degree hinge as the name suggests, still offers a 4K IPS 15.6-inch touchscreen with BrightView tech (meaning colors are bright and vibrant) and a ‘micro-edge’ (barely visible) bezel. The display is also toughened up by using Corning Gorilla Glass 4.

HP Spectre x360 15

Sonic boost

This 2-in-1 laptop is no slouch on the audio front, either, sticking with Bang & Olufsen speakers that we really appreciated on last year’s model (which had three speakers – and this refresh now has four, so it may sound even more impressive).

On the battery front, HP says this hybrid will be good for up to 13.5 hours, and fast charge technology means you can juice up the battery to 50% in around 45 minutes.

In terms of ports, you get a solid selection: a Thunderbolt 3 connector and a USB 3.1 Type-C port, along with a USB 3.1 (Type-A Sleep and Charge) and an HDMI port. One final point – this refreshed laptop is slightly thicker than last year’s model at 0.76-inches compared to 0.7-inches.

HP Spectre x360 15

Other points worth mentioning include the presence of an infrared-toting webcam for secure Windows Hello login, along with a fingerprint reader for the same purpose. There’s also a bundled HP Digital Pen for Windows Ink duties.

The HP Spectre x360 15 will be available on March 18 in the US (via HP.com and Best Buy) starting at $1,370 (around £1,000, AU$1,740).

  • New year, new tech – check out all our coverage of CES 2018