What’s the difference between the HP Spectre x360 13, Spectre x360 14, and Spectre x360 15?
The HP Spectre x360 series is an excellent choice for someone who’s looking for a premium and lightweight laptop. The company offers a total of three models under the branding, and while they look very similar, there are some key differences you should consider if you’re planning to buy one.
Here are some of the key differences between the HP Spectre x360 13, Spectre x360 14, and Spectre x360 15.
HP Spectre x360 13 vs. Spectre x360 14 vs. Spectre x360 15: Specifications
|HP Spectre x360 13||HP Spectre x360 14||HP Spectre x360 15|
The Spectre x360 range features a distinct design that sets it apart from other lightweight notebooks in its category. It features an all-aluminum construction with the top corners of the lid and keyboard deck having a ‘gem cut’ finish while the edges have copper or gold accents, depending on which color option you choose (Nightfall Black or Poseidon Blue). For those who don’t like the shiny accents, there’s also a Frosted Silver option available on the Spectre x360 13 and 14.
The I/O port selection on the smaller two models is similar, with the only difference in placement. You get two Thunderbolt 4 (USB-C 4) ports, a full-size USB Type-A port, a headphone jack, and even a microSD card slot for quick storage expansion. The larger Spectre x360 15 comes with the same set of ports but adds an HDMI port for video out and a barrel-style charging port to accommodate the larger 90W AC adaptor. You should be able to charge this particular model using either of the USB-C ports, but make sure you read the laptop’s documentation to understand the charging speeds.
Overall, all three models look very similar in terms of design, with the exception of the x360 14. This one is pretty much a taller version of the x360 13 with its 3:2 aspect ratio display. Yes, the Spectre x360 14 doesn’t come with a 14 inch display, but rather a 13.5 inch. If you go back to the spec sheet above, you’ll notice that HP managed to shave off a few millimeters in terms of the length and added that extra screen real-estate to the top, thereby increasing the width. This also makes more room on the deck, which means the x360 14 comes with a bigger trackpad than the x360 13.
Another change in design, specifically for the x360 14, is the fingerprint scanner. Instead of having one right below the keyboard like the x360 13 and the x360 15, it’s positioned on the keyboard in place of the second CTRL key (next to the arrow keys), which is very peculiar. Notably, both the Spectre x360 13 and the 15 feature dedicated camera shutter buttons sliders for extra privacy.
Lastly, the smaller models are almost identical in terms of weight at 2.8-pounds for the Spectre x360 13 and 2.9-pounds for the Spectre x360 14. The Spectre x360 15 is the heaviest, starting at 4.23 pounds.
HP’s got a good mix of display options for the Spectre x360. The Spectre x360 13 features a 13.3 inch display and is available with a full HD (1920 x 1080) IPS touchscreen panel with 400-nits of brightness and fairly thin bezels all around. If you care about privacy, there is a similar option with HP’s Sure View privacy screen, or if you want a more vivid experience, the laptop comes with a 4K UHD (3840 x 2160) OLED touchscreen option that brings support for HDR.
As mentioned before, the Spectre x360 14 features a slightly taller 13.5 inch display compared to the Spectre x360 13, available with a WUXGA+ (1920 x 1280) IPS touchscreen panel with 400 nits of brightness. There’s also a brighter 1,000 nits touchscreen option that also comes with the integrated privacy screen and of course an OLED panel option with a 3K2K (3000 x 2000) resolution and 400 nits peak brightness.
The Spectre x360 15, on the other hand, is only available in 4K (3840 x 2160) resolution options. You can either go for a standard IPS touchscreen panel with 400 nits brightness or an AMOLED for higher contrast and better-looking colors.
While it makes sense to opt for the OLED display options for their punchy colors and higher contrast, you need to consider that they’ll consume more battery as they’re offered in 3K or 4K resolutions, which means more pixels to push out on the display.
All three models of the Spectre x360 series can be maxed out with the 11th-gen Intel Core i7-1165G7 processor with 16GB of onboard memory and Iris Xe graphics. This means not only are they quite reliable when it comes to productivity, but all of them should also deliver a similar performance experience with only minor differences. If you don’t want to go all the way, the Spectre x360 13 and 14 are available with the lower-tiered Intel Core i5-1135G7 processor with 8GB of RAM, saving you some money.
The Spectre x360 15 can also be configured with dedicated NVIDIA GTX 1650Ti graphics. However, it’s only available with last year’s 10th-gen Intel H-series processors. Hopefully, the company will bring a new update for the laptop featuring the recently launched 11th-gen Tiger Lake-H processors, and possibly NVIDIA’s RTX 3050 series graphics. Now THAT would be a powerful notebook!
Conclusion: Which Spectre x360 should you buy?
All three models are quite impressive when it comes to style and performance. If you’re planning to buy a new Spectre x360, one of the most differentiating factors is going to be the size. In my opinion, the Spectre x360 13 offers the perfect ultra-notebook form factor. It’s sleek and compact, allowing you to carry it around easily without taking too much space on your desk. It’s also worth noting it’s the only model that offers optional, 5G mobile connectivity.
If you want more real estate, but don’t want to compromise on the overall footprint, the Spectre x360 14 is what you should get instead of the Spectre x360 13, although it might take you a while to get used to the 3:2 ratio display.
Lastly, the Spectre x360 15 is great for customers looking for a full-size 15 inch laptop that’s compact, offers a premium design, and packs great performance for everyday productivity. It’s also the more powerful out of the three if you’re willing to go for last year’s 10th-gen Intel processor model with discrete graphics from NVIDIA.
Apart from the Spectre x360, HP has a variety of laptops on the market. Here are some of the best HP laptops to buy in 2021. If you want to check out other brands, we also have a list of the best laptops you can buy today, and a dedicated list of the best laptops that offer 5G, if you care about fast mobile connectivity.