The launch of AMD's Vega-based graphics cards in August was a big deal for the company. The March release of the first wave of Ryzen processors was even more so. Both could be overshadowed in sales figures and importance by Raven Ridge, the APU that brings Ryzen and Vega together. The chip itself seems to have a compelling mix of CPU grunt and advanced graphics capabilities in a competitive 15 W power envelope, but getting design wins has often been a challenge for AMD's mobile offerings. HP has come forward with details about the Raven Ridge-powered version of its popular Envy x360 15 convertible laptop.
HP currently offers several 15" versions of the Envy x360 with Intel Core i5 and Core i7 processors with integrated graphics or Nvidia's GeForce MX150 discrete card, as well as a version with AMD's aged FX 9800P APU. The new Ryzen 5 2500U-powered Envy x360 15 comes with a 15.6" 1920x1080 IPS touchscreen and 8 GB of dual-channel DDR4 memory. Buyers should make sure to get the memory configuration they want from the get-go since HP lists the memory slots as "not user-accessible."
Base models get a 1 TB spinning-rust hard drive, but SSDs as large as 512 GB are on the options list. The Ryzen machine has a Thunderbolt 3-enabled USB Type-C connector in its port cluster, and can drive a pair of 3840x2160 displays thanks to that port and an HDMI jack. The laptop also has Intel-powered 802.11ac Wi-Fi and Bluetooth 4.2 connectivity, a Windows Hello-compatible camera, and a backlit keyboard with a number pad.
The machine tips the scales at 4.8 lbs (2.2 kg) and measures 14.2" wide, 9.8" deep, and 0.9" thick (36 cm x 25 cm x 2 cm). The battery is a three-cell 55.8-Wh unit, though HP didn't make any claims about its life. The display is attached to an extra-flexible hinge that allows the machine to assume tablet and tent shapes.
As a refresher, the 2500U has four cores and eight threads from a single core complex along with eight Radeon Vega compute units. The CPU cores have a base clock of 2.0 GHz, but can boost up to 3.8 GHz in the correct conditions. The eight graphics CUs add up to a total of 512 stream processors clocked at up to 1100 MHz. That SP count is the same as the diminutive Polaris-powered Radeon RX 550, though the discrete card clocks them at up to 1183 MHz and provides memory bandwidth that Ryzen 5 2500U's dual-channel DDR4 controller can only dream of.
The HP Envy x360 15 (model 15m-bq121dx) with a Ryzen 5 2500U, 8 GB of DDR4 memory, and a 1 TB hard drive will go for $699 when it goes on sale later this month. HP backs the machine with a one-year warranty.