HP Envy vs HP Spectre x360 – Which One Should You Get?

HP has developed its own series of Touchscreen Tablet PCs and their two most sought after models are the HP Envy and HP Spectre.

Both these models have similar features and score near equal in different benchmarks. This poses the big question – HP Envy vs HP Spectre x360 which one should you choose?

Well, I have done my best to lay out everything in this article. So, read on to find out the winner.

Quick Features Comparison

Here is a quick comparison table where I have rated the features of both the laptops side by side. The maximum rating for a single feature is 10 and the minimum rating is 0.

FEATUREHP ENVYHP SPECTRE x360
BUILD QUALITY7.58
DESIGN88.5
DISPLAY7.58
PERFORMANCE78
BATTERY88.5
UPGRADABILITY88
COOLING SYSTEM68
KEYBOARD7.58
SPEAKERS77
TOTAL(90)66.572

HP ENVY PROS and CONS

hp envy touchscreen 17 inch model

PROS

(a) Good Display with high Color Contrast and Color Gamut.

(b) Premium build quality with a shiny anodized Aluminium finish.

(c) Thin and Light which makes it easy to carry around.

(d) Decent Keyboard with good key travel and tactile feedback.

(e) Memory Card Reader is present.

CONS

(a) Thunderbolt 3 is absent.

(b) All models don’t have RAM Upgradability options.

(c) Security Site Lock is absent.

(d) Screen Flickering issue under low frequencies.

(e) Cooling System is Poor and the Fans make noise.

(f) Stylus Touch Pen is not included.

HP SPECTRE PROS and CONS

hp spectre touchscreen

PROS

(A) Superb Build Quality with a Premium shiny anodized Aluminum finish.

(B) Two Thunderbolt 3 Ports are present.

(C) Display has great Color Contrast, Saturation and Gamut.

(D) Great battery life for a touchscreen laptop.

(E) A lot of Upgradability Options for RAM, SSD and HDD.

(F) No Screen Flickering.

(G) Stylus Touch Pen is included.

CONS

(A) Glossy Display makes it prone to Fingerprint marks.

(B) There is noticeable Coil Whine.

(C) Weighs more than HP Envy which can cause Portability issues.

(D) Disassembling is difficult.

Now, it’s time to go deeper and analyze every single feature in more detail. So, here is the in-depth analysis of every single feature of HP Envy and HP Spectre x360.

BUILD QUALITY and DESIGN

HP Envy has a beautiful and premium design that looks slim and slick at the same time. The body is made from Anodized Aluminium which gives a shiny look to it but there is some flex around the middle.

HP Envy is available in Matte Graphite, Charcoal Black and Shiny Silver colors. The matte finish on the lid makes it easier to grip and doesn’t slip from your hands.

HP Envy has a thickness of around 0.59 inches(14.9 mm) and weighs around 2.9 Pounds(1.30kg).

The Envy has one USB Type-A and two USB Type-C ports along with an SD Memory Card slot. There is no Thunderbolt 3 Support. Also, HDMI Port and Optical drives are absent.

The non-touchscreen model of HP Envy doesn’t feature a Fingerprint Reader but the touchscreen model has a fingerprint reader which works like a charm.

HP Spectre x360 also uses Anodized Aluminium for the entire body which gives it a shiny look. The hinges are metal-plated which gives it an interestingly good look.

The edges on the HP Spectre x360 are surprisingly sharp, unlike the HP Envy which has smoother edges.

The HP Spectre x360 has a beautiful metal plating on the sides which makes it look much more premium than HP Envy.

HP Spectre x360 has a thickness of around 0.76 inches(19.3 mm) with a weight of around 4.8 pounds(2.18 kg).

HP Spectre x360 is thicker and heavier than HP Envy.

The Spectre x360 has one USB Type-A and two USB Type-C ports with Thunderbolt 3 support along with an SD Memory Card slot. HDMI Port is present but Optical Drive is absent.

Thunderbolt 3 provides Fast File Sharing in the range of 1 Gb per second, the ability to connect external monitors and the ability to connect external GPUs for increased performance.

Both HP Envy and Spectre x360 have tough hinges but they are also flexible which makes opening and closing the lids easy with one hand.

The HP Spectre x360 has a Fingerprint Reader that does a great job.

Overall, the HP Spectre x360 has a slightly better build quality and design than the HP Envy.

HP Envy review

DISPLAY

HP Envy comes in three display sizes which are 13.3 inches, 15.6 inches, and 17.3 inches. When it comes to screen resolution, the Envy has both Full HD(1920×1080) and 4K(3840×2160).

Display used in HP Envy is IPS display with Corning Gorilla Glass protection.

The 4K display in HP Envy has thinner bezels and provides more clarity than Full HD Display. The pictures look sharper with better color accuracy and crystal clear color representation.

The HP Envy has both Touchscreen and Non-Touchscreen Options. It does not come with Stylus Touch Pen.

hp envy on tablet mode
HP Envy on Tablet Mode

Both the Touchscreen and Non-Touchscreen models in HP Envy have Glossy Displays which have better color representation but they attract smudge marks from fingerprints and allow more light reflections and blue light emissions.

HP Envy has Screen Flickering when operated at Lower Frequencies.

The 13.3 inches and 15.6 inches displays of HP Envy have better Pixel Density(PPI) than the 17.3 inches display.

HP Spectre comes in two display sizes 13.3 inches and 15.6 inches with both Full HD and 4K screen resolutions.

Display is Glossy IPS Display with Corning Gorilla Glass Protection.

The Gorilla Glass protects your screen from scratches and pressure loads. But the disadvantage is that it scatters light coming from the screen which leads to more reflections and is bad for rooms with bright light and outdoor use.

HP Spectre x360 has only Touchscreen Option. It also comes with its own Stylus Pen.

hp spectre on tablet mode
HP Spectre x360 on Tablet Mode

The Spectre also has thin bezels with excellent color saturation, gamut and color accuracy. The viewing angles are great and you won’t miss any minute detail while watching a movie or observing a photo.

The downside of both HP Envy and HP Spectre x360 displays is that they reflect more light and don’t block light emissions emerging from the screen. This makes them a bad choice for bright light and outdoor use.

The Display of HP Spectre x360 shows NO Screen Flickering when operated at different frequencies.

There is not much to differentiate between the Displays of the two laptops but the Screen Flickering issue makes the HP Spectre x360 Display better than HP Envy.

HP Spectre Review

PERFORMANCE

The performance for the two laptops can be divided into three main parts CPU Performance, GPU Performance, and Storage Performance.

CPU Performance

HP Envy comes with Intel Core i5 and Intel Core i7 processors mainly. Both 8th Generation and 10th Generation Intel Processors are available. The newer Generation Intel Processors consume very less power and has a higher clock frequency.

Only one model i.e. HP Envy x360 uses AMD Ryzen Processor with options for the Ryzen 3 2300U, Ryzen 5 2500U or Ryzen 7 2700U.

Intel Core i5 and Intel Core i7 Processors in the HP Envy have higher Clock Speeds and therefore perform better than AMD Ryzen Processor which has an Underclocked CPU. The Intel Processors also consume less power than Ryzen Processors.

HP Spectre x360 also has both 8th Generation and 10th Generation Intel Core i5 and Intel Core i7 processors. Some models of HP Spectre have AMD Ryzen Processors with AMD Ryzen 5 and AMD Ryzen 7.

The Intel Processors are an excellent choice for heavy users who do a lot of multitasking. It is a great choice for Photo Editing, Video Editing, Streaming and light to medium gaming. But, Ryzen processors are not the best choice for heavy usage.

When it comes to CPU performance, the HP Spectre x360 just beats the HP Envy because of the latest 10th Generation Intel Core i7 9750H Processor in HP Spectre.

GPU Performance

The Intel Processor models of both HP Envy and HP Spectre comes with the choice of integrated Intel HD Graphics or dedicated Nvidia GeForce MX150 Graphics with 2 GB VRAM and Nvidia GeForce MX250 Graphics with 2 GB VRAM.

The Intel HD Graphics is not a good option for demanding tasks like streaming and gaming because they have low clock speeds and very low VRAM.

Although you can increase the VRAM of these integrated Intel Graphics they don’t come close to what the Nvidia Graphics cards can achieve.

The HP Envy has options for all three Graphics models but the HP Spectre x360 only has the option for Intel HD Graphics and Nvidia GeForce MX150 with 2GB VRAM.

For AMD Ryzen Processors the Graphics Card used is AMD Radeon RX Vega 8. This is also a good Graphics card with decent clock speed and frequency but consumes more power than Nvidia Cards. Hence, this AMD Graphics Card is not the best option for heavy usage.

The Nvidia GeForce MX150 and MX250 models are not the most top-notch models therefore they are not fit for playing console-level AAA Game Titles such as Rainbow Six Siege, Battlefield V, etc. You will get frequent lags and low FPS while playing those games. However, you can play less demanding games like FIFA 20, PES 2020, etc.

On GPU Performance both HP Envy and HP Spectre x360 scores the same.

STORAGE PERFORMANCE

When it comes to Storage Memory Performance first we will look at RAMs and then Hard Disk.

Both HP Envy and HP Spectre x360 come with the options for 8 GB RAM and 16 GB RAM. There is not much to differentiate here because both of them are DDR4 RAMs with similar storage capacities.

For Hard Disk, a lot of storage options are available for both the HP Envy and HP Spectre x360. Let us have a look at the different storage options available.

HP Envy – 512 GB PCIe NVMe M.2 SSD, 1 TB PCIe NVMe M.2 SSD, 256 GB Intel SSD + 16 GB Optane Memory, 512 GB Intel SSD + 32 GB Intel Optane.

HP Spectre x360 – 256 GB PCIe NVMe M.2 SSD, 512 GB PCIe NVMe M.2 SSD, 1 TB PCIe NVMe M.2 SSD, 2 TB PCIe NVMe M.2 SSD, 512 GB Intel SSD + 32 GB Optane Memory and 1 TB Intel SSD + 32 GB Intel Optane.

The Intel Optane Memory can be used both as RAM and Storage but it cannot physically replace both the RAM and SSD Storage. In fact, Intel Optane Memory is slower than M.2 SSDs and RAMs.

Since HP Spectre x360 has more storage options available therefore it beats HP Envy on Storage Performance.

Overall, the HP Spectre x360 beats HP Envy on Performance benchmark.

COOLING SYSTEM

HP Envy has only one Cooling Fan which is positioned near the back. This allows the hot air to be released through the vents. The vents are located on the back of the laptop.

hp envy with one cooling fan
One Cooling Fan of HP Envy

Since there is only one Cooling Fan the temperatures can rise a lot and may lead to Thermal Throttling.

HP Spectre x360 has two Cooling Fans of different sizes which are not positioned together. The bigger fan is present on the left side near the hot air vents. While the smaller fan is present on the back.

hp spectre with two cooling fans
Two Cooling Fans of HP Spectre x360

The two cooling fans do a much better job in controlling the temperatures but can cause Thermal Throttling if you do a lot of high CPU and GPU demanding tasks.

The HP Spectre x360 has a better Cooling System than HP Envy.

UPGRADABILITY

The 2018 models of HP Envy and HP Spectre x360 have RAM soldered to the Motherboard. Hence, the RAM is not upgradable in old models.

The newer models of both HP Envy and HP Spectre x360 have Upgradable RAM, WLAN Card, SSD, and HDD.

Even though the storage and WLAN cards are upgradable, it is quite difficult to do this because of the presence of a number of small Torx T5 screws. It is highly advisable that you don’t do this on your own and take the help of a specialist.

Both HP Envy and HP Spectre x360 scores similar on Upgradability options.

KEYBOARD and TOUCHPAD

The Keyboard of HP Envy is very comfortable and the keys are big enough and well placed. The 13 inches model doesn’t feature a Numpad while the 15 inches model has a Numpad. The Keyboard has BrightView Backlight which is white in color.

The Keys on the HP Envy have decent Key Travel with some Tactile feedback. But, one problem with the keyboard is that there is some noticeable Flex when pressure is applied on the Keyboard.

The Touchpad on HP Envy is quite responsive and register all your clicks and gestures accurately without any delays.

The Keyboard of HP Spectre x360 features a Numpad for the 15 inches model but it is absent on the 13 inches model. BrightView Backlight is also present in white color.

The Keys on the HP Spectre x360 have long Key Travel with decent tactile feedback. You will definitely enjoy typing on this keyboard.

Unlike HP Envy you won’t notice any flex if you apply pressure on the HP Spectre x360 keyboard.

The Touchpad of HP Spectre is very responsive and registers clicks and gestures without any lag.

The Touchpad of both HP Envy and HP Spectre is similar but the Keyboard of HP Spectre x360 is better than HP Envy.

BATTERY

HP Envy has a 79 Wh battery for the touchscreen which lasts around 7 hours for mixed usage. If you play a lot of videos then the battery lasts for around 6 hours.

The non-touchscreen HP Envy has a better battery life and can last up to 9 hours for mixed usage and 7 hours for video playback.

Also, the 1080p display model has better battery life than the 4K Display model. The 4K display hardly lasts for 5 hours under mixed usage and around 3.5-4 hours for video playback. The battery lasts for only an hour while Gaming.

HP Spectre x360 has a larger 6 cell battery with 84 Wh capacity. It lasts up to 10 hours for mixed usage and 7.5-8 hours of video playback. This is a pretty good performance for a touchscreen laptop. The battery lasts just more than an hour while Gaming.

Overall, the battery life of HP Spectre x360 is better than the touchscreen model of HP Envy. While the non-touchscreen HP Envy lasts more than HP Spectre x360.

SPEAKERS

Both HP Envy and Spectre x360 have Bang and Olufsen Quad Speakers. These speakers have decent output and the decibel levels are decent.

Not much to differentiate here because of similar configuration.

HP Envy vs HP Spectre x360 – Which is the better Laptop?

After all that information, it is crystal clear that HP Spectre x360 is the better laptop. It scores higher than HP Envy for almost all the features.

HP Spectre x360 is a great fit for almost every kind of user. It is not ideal for heavy gamers. For photo and video editors this laptop is just pure gold.

If you don’t want to invest in a touchscreen laptop then the HP Envy non-touchscreen model should be good enough for you. The performance won’t be as good as HP Spectre x360.

But with performance comes a price. You’ll have to shell out more cash in order to purchase HP Spectre x360.

If you want a budget laptop with decent performance then HP Envy is for you. If you don’t want to compromise on performance then go for HP Spectre x360.

Finally, I recommend my readers to go for HP Spectre x360.

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