We go hands-on with HP Spectre the 'thinnest laptop in the world'

HP's Spectre laptop comes in at just 10.4mm thin, and boasts 9.5 hours of battery life per charge and doesn't have an outrageous price tag to accompany it. Is it possible that something so thin and light could provide enough power and speed to get you through your daily tasks? The short answer is yes. The HP Spectre is quite powerful, packing either an i5 or i7 inside depending on which model you opt for. Paired with the processor of choice, you've got 8GB of RAM and up to 512GB of SSD internal storage.

On the back, the laptop has three USB-C connectors, all of which are capable of both charging the computer and charging external devices. The inner two USB-C ports also double as Thunderbolt connectors, and the only other port is a headphone jack on the opposite side.

The screen is a 13.3-inch non-touch IPS display that has amazing viewing angles and beautiful colors, with a limited bezel around it. You won't find a 4K version of this laptop, but that isn't a deal breaker. For the hinges, HP is using pistons to keep them in place, and the laptop opens and closes very smoothly. The keys on the keyboard aren't raised high, but they offer a great feel and are very easy to get used to. As far as performance, the Spectre likely isn't for those who want to play resource intensive games, but that doesn't mean it's a slouch. We were able to move around the OS, launch apps, and multitask with relative ease.

The overall design is what really sets the spectre apart here, with its dark grey body and gold hinge. HP has also put a new logo on this, which it will use only for its premium laptops. Pre-orders are set to begin on April 25, with prices starting at $1,169.

Jared DiPane

Jared started off writing about mobile phones back when BlackBerry ruled the market, and Windows Mobile was kinda cool. Now, with a family, mortgage and other responsibilities he has no choice but to look for the best deals, and he's here to share them with you.

  • Nice!
  • i like the GOLD - BLACK color combination, looks very attractive but the design is meeeh, huge bezel around the LCD, wasted space around the keyboard and I dont like the position of the speakers
  • Best for people who time warp 5 years into the past
  • Indeed. Not being a touch-enabled 2-in-1 is a deal-breaker.
  • It's a laptop, buy a Surface Book then...always complaining
  • The Surface Book is fantastic but too expensive.
  • Not every device needs to be have a touchscreen, not everyone wants one. Besides, HP already has a line of computers for that.
  • If it doesn't have a touch screen and 2-in-1 capabilities, then I have zero interest in it. Those are necessary features to me.
  • Do you take the time to go into Toyotas forum and tell people there that the car they just announced isn't for you? I find it really odd that people feel the need to share their desire or non desire of a product with everyone. Like some 11 year old girl sharing her every thought on Facebook. Besides Garry was right, you are always on here spouting off mostly negative comments.
  • I feel you
  • Looks interesting. Some impressive engineering going on. Windows Central for Windows 10-Microsoft Lumia 640
  • But no touch or 4K
  • I don't personally need either one. Touch might be cool, 4K would just be a battery drain with no real benefit for me.
  • Another problem is it's not a 2-in-1
  • Still impressive.
  • This is a laptop, not a 2-in-1. They are still different categories of computers. There is still a huge market for these devises, just take a look at the Dell XPS 13 and 15. Those are laptops, not 2-in-1s, and you's be hard pressed to find anyone that doesn't consider them excellent machines (not perfect, but still great).
  • It's a laptop anyways, so having no touch isn't that a big problem for many. 4K though nice, just eats up more battery and added GPU overhead. Unless they can make to have 10 hours battery life with 4K, better have Full-HD for now, or even better just WQHD (2560 x 1440 resolution) would be a better balance than 4K.
  • That's what I was saying. This is for people who want ultra-portable but want to keep that power. If you want 4K and touch there are other options.
  • I think that once you get used to very resolution displays, there's no going back. Quad HD is good, but not enough. My Dell XPS 13 has a 3200x1800 display and my eyes hurt going back to lesser resolutions. I'm not exaggerating -- we all use phones with high PPI already. Why not laptops? (I understand battery is a concern but for a well designed computer, it's worth it for me)
  • This is why I think we need to make 2560 x 1440 a standard middle-ground, while some high-end will have 4K and make entry-level to have full-HD. For me, the battery life is very much important to a laptop and tablets and should be a priority. Though it would be best to have option for 4K for those who want to. Still I wish that they have to work out and optimize to have better battery-life with 4K display, both for OEM and for Windows.
  • I think that came with the other models
  • It has a beautiful, but at the same time, pretty weird design.
  • was waiting for this one, tnx!
  • Wow, I want it ;-)
  • One thing that I hate, is that I have still not seen the side view, to see the actual thinness with the lid closed down. All of the angles are the birds eye view angle.
  • "I want that." - Sent From Mars
  • we will put one in the next supply mission. how do you plan to pay for it except for potatoes?
  • Ahhhhh, had an issue with the potatoes, how about rocks?
  • Really beautiful laptop, take that MacBook. Posted via the Windows Central App for Android
  • Sorry, but if the laptop is over the $550 price tag, it's considered too expensive.  If its over $1000, then it's considered outrageous price.  As an IT person, i get asked recomendations for laptops all the time immediately follwed by "I don't want to pay over $400" for a laptop.
  • On the other hand, laptops under the $400 range are just generally awful. I can't find many low-end devices I'd feel comfortable recommending. Surface Pro 3 is my baseline.
  • If you were my IT person and you recommended a $400 laptop I would fire you on the spot.
  • Really? You must never have "played" with anything better.. LOVE my SB and want this HP for my GF.       
  • I agree this is overpriced and I would never in a million years recommend a laptop for these prices. However I think that the best price point for good laptops is around the 600-700€. Below that they get too crappy and above that they're a waste of money. Posted via the Windows Central App for Android
  • Because Macbooks are not overpriced right? You pay for design here same as you pay for that fruit on your laptop.
  • Blade800, are you new around here? DJCBS is one if our little whiners. In there with wpkevin, coip, rodneyej.  Don't expect sense out of them, just endless whining and negativity. Its actually not that expensive, its only about 250 dollars more than my firm pays for a Lenovo standard issue. So to get the premium look and feel is not too much of an additional cost (I would have expected it to be more). I'd have this over a low end Macbook.
  • Nah, I know him and his negative comments very well :-)
  • Well, at least your avatar matches your stage in human evolution. Posted via the Windows Central App for Android
  • Please, let me know when MacBooks have competition.
    Your comparison is pretty arsenine. Yes, you can say you're paying for the design. And I can say that it's still overpriced. Specially because it's a Windows laptop and therefore HAS true competition. Posted via the Windows Central App for Android
  • Explain that to MacBook users! Sent from my Computer
  • Oh FDentotti, oh let me try... "It's incredible. It's magical. Its available today. In premium virgin cl1toris aluminium and in limited colors mostly starting with words like space" (hipster hears, "this will make me unique, special, the envy of my peers, girls will want s3x with me").  In actual fact it makes you as unique as a fart in a bathtub. Having an Apple product, growing a beard, wearing a lumberjack shirt, riding a fixie bike listenign to index music and sporting an over the shoulder manbag makes you one of the masses - defintely not an individual :)
  • MacBook users are idiots. You can't explain that to them. To Windows users though, it's easier to explain the are cheaper better offerings on Windows ;) Posted via the Windows Central App for Android
  • If people does not want to pay more than $400 for a laptop then they will get a crappy laptop. I work in IT and clients depend of my expertise to do their jobs and keep their data secure. I would never tell them to buy a $350 laptop that will onlly create them frustration and it will not last for real work. If you want something good, spend at least a minimum of $800, if not more.
  • Agreed.  where I am right now, IT pay 920 dollars for the "base" laptop. (Exec get flashier stuff of course).
  • I never recommend 400€ laptops either. Between 600€-700€ is the acceptable price for a good laptop. Anything above that is just a waste of money. If you need more power than that available on a 700€ laptop, you buy a PC. And with the 1000€ they charge for this laptop, you buy one hell of a PC. Posted via the Windows Central App for Android
  • That's what you guys call a "limited bezel?"  It looks huge, especially after using the Dell XPSes. Otherwise, I think it's a really sharp looking laptop with a killer size.
  • Its limited to 40% of screen real estate vs. 100%
  • You have a point there, but still sexy...
  • .
  • What happens when the battery no longer takes a charge? While integrated batteries make for thin and light, thin and light loses its advantage when it has to be tethered to the wall charger. This is especially true when dropping north of $1k on a laptop. That is a big investment in something with planned obsolescence built right inside. Can the batteries in these things be replaced easily and somewhat affordably?
  • No touch. No but. I've changed the way I operate a PC with a mix of touch, keyboard and mouse. I've reach the pinnacle of productivity, I'm not going back.
  • "The screen is a 13.3-inch non-touch IPS display​". Tnx for pointing that out, only watched the video till now. 
  • Non-touch. No way.
  • This is a beautiful laptop.
    But beautiful. The only thing that would put me off (assuming I'd EVER accept to pay these prices for ANY laptop) would be the USB-C ports. Posted via the Windows Central App for Android
  • I'm never buying a laptop with a 1080p screen or not touch enabled.    
  • LOL the person opening the laptop's tatoo reminds me of Robinson Crusoe.
  • If the touch pad works finally I'll get jt.
  • I assume all the commenters here complaining about the price and non-touch would never consider a Mac. Same price range/no touch. Posted from Windows Central for Windows 10
  • I do complain about non-touch, no-pen, non-detachable and for the same reasons, I don't like Macbook either. As a matter of fact, I believe most (if not all) Apple products are way over priced for the value they bring to the table. But then again, it might be a reason a lot of people buy them: show-offs.
  • No stylus pen?
  • Does not have a touchscreen, might not play graphic intensive games very well and still priced in exess of $1100. yet you feel it is not outrageously priced. It would have been best fit at a price range of $600 to $700. Would have sold like hot potatoes in that bracket. At over a thousand grands, you get far better laptops. Just compare it with Surface Pro 4 and check which is better or looks performance, portability, screen et. all. And that is a touchscreen with pen.
  • Good looking rig.
    How is it tho, everytime there is a laptop shown on TV its a Mac, everytime !
    Anyone would think Mac is supremely dominant, what's with that ?
  • Looked like camo or water damage till i realised its your arm shadow :)
  • I definatlly want this Posted via the Windows Central App for Android
  • This laptop will most likely have heating issue. The fans blow sideways under the motherbaord and not clear if they are ducted at 90 degree angle to the grilless on the back edge of the chasis.
  • I don't want a laptop with a touch screen or a 4K display, I'd buy a tablet if I wanted a touch screen and as for the display, if history has tough us anything 4K will be superseded by 8K before we know it (Just like 720p - 1080p) and personally 720p is good enough for me. My only concern would be with the amount of RAM on offer, I assume it's DDR4 but can it be upgraded or is it soldered?
  • 8GB with a non-gaming laptop will be fine for years! And by fine I mean far more than needed.
  • Too much bling-bling for me with potential to get scratches too easily. Might consider one if it doesn't look like some jewelry but like a tool.
  • It looks pleasing and I really like how hp finally did some quality engineering. The truth is, we need laptops like these and we didn't really have anything aside the dell xps series, but even those are a hit and miss due to availability. I agree that the price tag is a bit high for a simple HD screen, but I'm considering it as a secondary thing at this screen size. I don't miss touch as it is an ultrabook. I never really missed touch from laptops and never really used it even when I had the option.
    Global availability and the price on different models are what's gonna make or break this product and I hope hp is going all out on this one.
  • If I needed a laptop I would buy this, but I don't, my VAIO still looking great :)
  • I really love the design but god oh why the bezels, why do you make such a huge bezels for screen on such a thin laptop. 
  • Because technology has to go somewhere. Posted via the Windows Central App for Android
  • Amazing device.
    I am looking farward to having one in the near future.
  • Even in a non maximized youtube window you can see it getting covered in fingerprint grease marks. Enjoy wiping down your laptop for hours each day... :p
  • Really was looking at this device. It's just a shame it doesn't fully flip into a tablet format.
  • Nevermind....missed the part about it not having a touchscreen. Forget about it.
  • Anyone have the spec dimensions? Thank you! (You can tweet them to us @SFBags or reply here. Really appreciate it.)
  • The gold hinge and accents are just yuck.
  • Got the dimensions for anyone else interested: "Here's all we know so far: 13.3-inch. 2.45 pounds. 10.4mm thin." via @RodTernt. Thanks, Rod!
  • sexy asf yet powerful