HP refreshes Spectre x360 and Envy machines for the holidays

— 10:00 AM on October 12, 2016

Gerbils, it's October, and you know what that means: time to get the Christmas decorations out. At least, that's how marketing executives seem to think. HP's getting out ahead of the trend and releasing the first part of its holiday portfolio now. The company has an updated Spectre x360, a refreshed Envy laptop, and an all-new Envy 27 all-in-one leading the charge.

We're fans of the 13" version of the Spectre x360 fold-over convertible, and we recommended it in our mobile staff picks back in July. The form factor hasn't changed, but the new version is a significant revision. HP updated the 13" Spectre's x360 processor offerings to the latest 7th-Generation Core i5s and i7 CPUs and added two Thunderbolt 3-capable USB Type-C ports. The laptop's 1TB SSD now uses a PCIe interface, and the webcam is accompanied by a full HD infrared camera for Windows Hello integration.

Not content with upgrading the specs, HP also made the new Spectre 2mm thinner and 5.6oz (159g) lighter than the previous version. HP says it accomplished this with a new hinge design and a "near-zero bezel" display. Despite the size reduction, HP managed to cram a more capacious 57.8-WHr battery into the Spectre. As a result, the new machine is specced for up to 15 hours of battery life. HP also says the Spectre x360 can charge to 90% capacity in an hour and a half.

If you don't need the versatility of a convertible, the new Envy laptop might be more your style. The new revision of this 13.3" laptop shares a lot of features with the new Spectre, like 7th-generation Intel chips CPUs, the 1TB PCIe SSD, and the quick-charge ability. However, whereas the Spectre has a 1080p display, the Envy can be configured with 2560x1440 and 3840x2160 displays, as well as optional touchscreens. It does lose the Thunderbolt connection and IR camera compared to the Spectre, though.

Along with the two fancy laptops, HP is also releasing an all-in-one PC called the Envy 27. Most AIOs pack the machine's guts into the space behind the display, but HP opted to instead build the PC into the base of the monitor. This makes the monitor portion of the machine—a 27" 2560x1440 IPS display—superthin at just 15mm.

The new AIO isn't just a pretty face. HP loads it up with quad-core Skylake Core i5s and i7 CPUs and up to 16GB of RAM. A GeForce GTX 950M card with 4GB of VRAM is available as an option. The Envy 27 can be configured with PCIe SSDs up to 256GB and HDDs up to 2TB. The AIO offers a USB Type-C port with Thunderbolt 3 support and HDMI input and output ports, letting owners to use the Envy 27's big, beautiful display for another device.

The updated 13" Spectre x360 is available right now at HP.com starting at $1049. Meanwhile, the updated Envy laptop and the Envy 27 AIO will be coming out later this month. HP expects the Envy laptop to start at just $849, and the all-in-one to start at $1299.

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