HP Spectre x360 15 (2016) review

Thin-and-light styling from a 15-inch laptop

HP Spectre x360 15

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The HP Spectre x360 15 is an impressively thin and light hybrid notebook with more than a few features to make it stand out. It's a sleek machine that packs an overall smaller footprint than most 15-inch machines – all while integrating one of the best hinges for a 2-in-1 notebook ever made.

We liked

The metal body of the Spectre x360 15 is on a whole other level compared to most thicker and plastic 15-inch laptops. The aluminum frame is exquisitely thin and hasn't sacrificed anything in the way of battery life or performance – two areas where this machine delivers in spades. The screen uses an excellent IPS touch panel and it only gets better if you add on the affordable 4K screen.

We disliked

Everything there is to like about this 15-inch hybrid is accented by an annoying quirk. The vibrant display is lacking in brightness, the balanced speakers lack power and the laptop's ergonomics could use work, with a larger keyboard and smaller trackpad.

Final verdict

Ultimately, the Spectre x360 15 is an excellent 15-inch, 2-in-1 laptop that stands out with its thin, metal body, strong performance and long battery life. However, the same elegant engineering also raises the price and profile of this 15-inch hybrid into the realm of the 15-inch MacBook Pro and Dell XPS 15. But it has no hopes of keeping up with either when it's limited to just integrated graphics.

Meanwhile, the HP has other, more affordable rivals with the Dell Inspiron 15 7000 2-in-1 and Toshiba Satellite Radius 15. Dell's hybrid comes at a better value and with stronger ergonomics, while Toshiba's convertible offers one of the best displays on a laptop today.

Still, you'll get through a longer day with the Spectre x360 15, thanks to its portability and longer battery life. If you're willing to deal with the annoyances and have no qualms with the higher price, this is a fine machine for students and light office work.

Kevin Lee

Kevin Lee was a former computing reporter at TechRadar. Kevin is now the SEO Updates Editor at IGN based in New York. He handles all of the best of tech buying guides while also dipping his hand in the entertainment and games evergreen content. Kevin has over eight years of experience in the tech and games publications with previous bylines at Polygon, PC World, and more. Outside of work, Kevin is major movie buff of cult and bad films. He also regularly plays flight & space sim and racing games. IRL he's a fan of archery, axe throwing, and board games.