The Spectre x360 sports, as the name might imply, a 360° hinge mechanism that allows you to pivot the screen all the way around and close it onto the backside to use it as a tablet — a tablet that just so happens to have a 13.3-inch display (in 1080p or QHD) and a high-powered Intel Core i-series processor.
This is, of course, not even remotely the first convertible Windows laptop we've seen with a display that swings all the way around, but it is certainly one of the nicest. That comes down the the body, which was machined out of aluminum with crisp corners, lightly-polished sides, and measures just 15.9mm thick and weighs 3.3 pounds. Even with the Core i7 processor pushing 3.6 million pixels on that QHD display, HP still rates the Spectre x360 for up to 12.5 hours of battery life.
But let's just talk about the hinges. In lieu of a traditional friction hinge, HP's opted for a gear-driven hinge that they claim stands up to long-term repeated wear better than a friction hinge. These gears are encased inside a polished silver shell, adding a bit of bling to the otherwise understated design.
We will, of course, need to spend some quality time with this Windows 8.1 machine before we can give any conclusive judgements. But in our brief time with the HP Spectre x360 we came away impressed. Regardless of how things shake out, this is just beautiful and solid piece of design.
The HP Spectre x360 is up for order now on HP.com and projected to ship starting March 15, priced from $899.99 to $1149.99, depending on which options boxes you tick.
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Derek Kessler is Special Projects Manager for Mobile Nations. He's been writing about tech since 2009, has far more phones than is considered humane, still carries a torch for Palm, and got a Tesla because it was the biggest gadget he could find. You can follow him on Twitter at @derekakessler.