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Laptop Review

HP Envy x360 15 Convertible Laptop: The Fusion of Elegance and Performance

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HP’s Envy series of laptops and two-in-one convertibles falls between the mainstream Pavilion lineup and the premium Spectre line. The Envy x360 15, a 15.6-inch two-in-one, offers the best of both worlds: a high-end design reminiscent of the Spectre, but with a price tag more in line with the affordable Pavilion models. The Envy x360 15 features an attractive and sturdy all-metal body, though its design remains unchanged from the previous year. While the familiar design is acceptable, some may find it disappointing that HP continues to stick with a widescreen 16:9 display. Many competing convertibles, such as the Dell Inspiron 16 two-in-one and Lenovo Yoga 7i 16, have adopted the increasingly popular 16:10 aspect ratio, providing a roomier and more practical screen without significantly increasing the device’s footprint.

The Envy x360 15’s hardware configuration is solidly midrange, featuring a year-old Ryzen 7 5825U CPU, which lags behind AMD’s current 6000 series. It comes with 12GB of RAM, a step up from the 8GB typical in budget models but falls short of the 16GB often available in this price range. One significant improvement from the previous model is the webcam, with HP doubling the resolution from a grainy 720p to a crisp 1440p camera. In an era dominated by video conferences, the upgraded webcam is a much-appreciated enhancement.

Revamped Perspective: Envy Reimagined

The Envy x360 15 boasts an elegant all-metal chassis in HP’s Nightfall Black finish. This matte-black surface carries a subtle brown undertone, exuding a luxurious aura reminiscent of the Spectre x360 16. However, it ditches the gem-cut edges, gold accents, and rear-corner ports. The Envy x360 15 effortlessly transitions from the boardroom to executive suites, standing out from the sea of silver aluminum laptops commonly seen in coffee shops and shared workspaces.

Weighing in at 4.2 pounds (1.9 kilograms), the Envy x360 15 feels slightly heavier than expected, likely due to the additional layers necessary for its touch display, a standard feature in two-in-ones. For daily commuting and a more natural tablet experience, the 3-pound Lenovo Yoga 7i with its 14-inch, 16:10 display might be a better choice. Holding the Envy x360 15 in portrait mode as a tablet reveals its comically tall and narrow dimensions. It’s a bit too weighty for one-handed use when tapping, swiping, or sketching, and it’s important to note that a pen is not included.

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The aluminum chassis exudes sturdiness, with minimal flex, even on the lid protecting the display. The keyboard deck provides a solid platform for comfortable typing. The well-spaced, firm, flat keys deliver a satisfying, tactile response, making typing on the Envy x360 15 a pleasant experience. The touchpad, generously sized and responsive, complements the overall input experience. Both the keys and touchpad offer just the right amount of travel and operate quietly, ensuring a distraction-free workspace.

The 15.6-inch widescreen display, adhering to the 16:9 aspect ratio, might seem outdated and cramped when navigating through lengthy documents or web pages. Applications like Microsoft Word, with its prominent menu bar at the top, leave limited space for reading the actual content without continuous scrolling. This is where the 16:10 aspect ratio, a favorite among laptops, shines. It offers a more spacious workspace, catering to all tasks efficiently. While a 16:9 display suits movie-watching, a 16:10 screen excels in every other aspect.

Display: The highlight of the HP Envy x360 is its impressive display. The 15.6-inch FHD panel with a 60Hz refresh rate offers vibrant visuals, with deep black levels due to the OLED technology. It boasts a brightness of 400 nits, HDR brightness around 500 nits, and a 100% DCI-P3 color gamut. Notably, this laptop is IMAX Enhanced Certified, ensuring superior movie and show viewing. However, the 16:9 aspect ratio doesn’t align perfectly with the taller IMAX ratio. The only drawback is the limited 1080p resolution, which falls slightly short for a premium device. Audio quality, thanks to Bang & Olufsen speakers, offers good volume and clarity, though the bottom-firing speakers work best on flat surfaces.

Performance: The HP Envy x360 15.6-inch 2-in-1 Laptop PC is a powerhouse, featuring an Intel Core i7-1355U processor, NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3050 GPU, and up to 16 GB LPDDR5-5200 MHz RAM. It can handle both demanding tasks and daily usage with ease. Our review unit, equipped with a Core i5-1335U and 16GB RAM, delivered seamless performance for everyday tasks, including MS Office and professional applications. Even gaming, as tested with GTA 5, was smooth at 1080p settings, maintaining over 50 frames per second. The laptop impresses with quick boot times, thanks to Intel EVO certification. Additionally, the IR camera enables Windows Hello for hassle-free startup.

Connectivity and Battery: The laptop offers a good selection of ports, including an SD card slot, a 3.5 mm jack, a USB Type-A port, HDMI 2.1, and two Thunderbolt 4 ports. While the variety is commendable, a more balanced distribution of ports could enhance accessibility. It supports wireless technologies like Intel Wi-Fi 6E and Bluetooth 5.3. In terms of battery life, the laptop can provide up to 4 hours of usage with just 30 minutes of charging, and with moderate to heavy use, it exceeds 10 hours of screen time.

Pros:

  • Premium aesthetics without the premium price tag
  • Enhanced 1440p webcam for improved video quality
  • Impressive battery life

Cons:

  • Outdated and cramped 16:9 display
  • Dim display that may lack brightness

Verdict: With a starting price of INR 78,999, the HP Envy x360 15.6-inch 2-in-1 Laptop is a versatile and capable device. It excels in performance, featuring Intel EVO certification and IMAX Enhanced certification for an enhanced media experience. While its 1080p display might not be perfect for everyone, it remains a strong choice for both entertainment and professional use.

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