HP unveiled a new premium laptop aimed squarely at the Apple Macbook, the Spectre is a 13.3 inch super slim laptop at only 10.4mm thick, that’s 3mm thinner than the Macbook. Where HP hope to win against similar sized laptops is in the processing department. Rather than incorporating a fanless low power CPU such as the Intel Core M in the Macbook, HP have installed Intel’s latest Skylake i series of processors. This gives the Spectre serious performance boost compared to its rivals. Battery life is around 9.5 hours which is reasonable, nothing write home about.
Inside is a technical masterpiece of engineering, with carefully placed seals and routes for air to channel over the components as efficiently as possible in such a tight space. This is critical when you’ve chosen processors that need fan cooling, and it seems like HP have really paid attention here.
Connectivity wise there are three USB type C ports two of which support Thunderbolt 3.0. Although that’s better than the Macbook’s single port, it still means that you will need to switch your peripherals to USB-C or buy a bunch of converters.
Where the Spectre disappoints is the screen, with only Full HD (1920 x 1080) resolution its poor compared to the Retina or Quad HD displays that are so common in the premium end of the market. One would also expect a touch screen display as an option for a Windows 10 device. Windows 10 is pretty touch friendly and it seems that Microsoft are heading more towards touch and pen control over traditional mouse point and click.
The body is made from premium materials such as carbon fibre, aluminium and polished copper for the screen hinges. There are gold accents on the keyboard, this makes for a very nice looking laptop but for some reason it doesn’t seems to have the allure of a Macbook. The design is clearly aimed at the well heeled customer and by owning one it could be said that you are showing off how loaded you are.
And if you are a footballer or more likely a Middle Eastern Sheikh then there is a solid gold and diamond Spectre for £££.
The Spectre is an impressive laptop with designer looks and impressive technology, and the most powerful laptop of its size in the world. Unfortunately the screen and lack of touch screen option lets it down and I’m not sure if the design will appeal to all. The Spectre wins on the power stakes but the Macbook wins on style and general appeal in my opinion.
The HP Spectre will be available from April 25th in the US with prices starting at $1,170. No word on when to expect this laptop to hit UK shores yet.