Notebook Review

Review HP Chromebook x2 hybrid device on Chrome OS

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During the announcement and at the start of sales wasit is clear that HP Chromebook x2 caused a big stir among Chrome OS fans. This new model Chromebook received characteristics that allow to compete with more expensive devices.

Chromebook x2 was the only one in the segmentwhich is easily detached from the platform - a hybrid. It can replace both a traditional laptop and a tablet. Smooth bends, full-size stylus and all-metal body only add pleasant impressions.

Even now, a few months afterannouncement, HP Chromebook x2 easily leaves behind milestones competitors. Simply put, it easily competes with devices on Chrome OS significantly higher than its price range, and without compromise.

Of course, flaws can be found everywhere, but they are minor to influence the overall impression. I tested the Chromebook x2 in practice!

  • Specifications
  • Design and construction
  • Removable keyboard
  • Stylus and control
  • Stereo sound
  • High-quality display
  • Chromebook x2 cameras
  • System and software
  • Performance
  • Autonomy
  • Should I buy?
  • HP Chromebook x2 specifications

    One look at the features of a Chromebook x2enough to "fall in love" with him. The device has a removable part with a 12.3-inch display and dimensions of 29.2 × 21.1 cm, with a thickness of 8 mm. In tablet mode x2 weighs 730 g, and as a laptop - 1.38 kg.

    The screen received a resolution of 2400 × 1600 pixels, with3: 2 aspect ratio and WLED-backlit. There is support for the stylus, and the HP Chromebook x2 itself is more of a hybrid than a laptop. Naturally, integrated graphics - Intel HD Graphics 615, but it costs a dual-core Intel Core m3-7Y30 processor. The base frequency of the processor is 1 GHz, and in Turbo Boost mode - up to 2.6 GHz.

    Hybrid received 4 GB of RAMLPDDR3-1600 and internal memory, eMMC standard volume of 32 GB. The latest version of Chrome OS impressively manages the capabilities of the filling, despite its strong dependence on the cloud. For a stable wireless connection, there is support for the Wi-Fi 802.11 b / g / n / ac protocol with 2 × 2 MIMO and Bluetooth 4.2.

    Secure data transfer supportsspecial microcontroller h1 from google. Chromebook x2 is powered by a 4-cell battery at 48 W / h, it lasts for about 12.5 hours of autonomy. Charging the battery from any of the two ports USB Type-C 3.0.

    Silver-white ceramic frame also hasmicroSD card slot and 3.5 mm audio jack, and a pair of Bang & Olufsen Play speakers installed on both sides. Directly above the touch screen is a wide-angle 5-megapixel camera and an additional infrared with built-in microphone. The second main 13 megapixel camera is mounted on the back panel, above the HP logo.

    The x2 display is attached to the keyboard part withusing two mounts and POGO pins that provide a secure connection and support panel. The keyboard has a soft touch coating, and the touchpad here with support for gestures.

    Design and construction

    Talking about color and design is prettysubjective matter. However, the HP Chromebook x2 ceramic white top panel and almost black keyboard create a stunning combination of style. It is simultaneously combined and hints that the upper part easily turns into a tablet.

    When both parts are connected, between the keyboard andThe main body has virtually no clearance. The hinge itself looks reliable and fits perfectly into the overall design. The magnets holding it in place are very strong. I do not think that it can happen that a spontaneous separation occurs.

    These magnets are so strong that IIt took several attempts to attach the keyboard and not pinch the fingers. We'll have to practice a bit to figure out how to do it right. For better ergonomics in laptop mode, the Chromebook x2 hinges are installed so that the back of the keyboard is slightly raised. At the same time in any position, the display can be disconnected in one motion.

    The edges of the display case are smoothly rounded,which makes the device in tablet mode as convenient as possible. The back part got almost invisible roundness, closer to the edges. Not without its drawbacks. The design here is not 100% thought out. If in the tablet mode there were no problems, like a Chromebook x2 laptop on your lap does not hold for a long time. The lower part of the hinge rests and creates not the most pleasant sensations.

    Removable keyboard

    The HP Chromebook x2 keyboard hinge is durable andelastic. One hand to open the device does not work, which traditional devices on Chrome OS did not previously have. The keys located at the bottom of the panel are precise, with a pleasant click and almost perfect stroke.

    Island layout and textured materialwhich is very similar to the skin, provide maximum comfort when typing. On the right side of the keyboard there is a fastening for the HP Wacom EMR stylus, the plastic here has no texture and is slightly elastic. The lower part here has elongated rubber feet to increase strength and stability. The only thing you could add was the backlight of the keys.

    Stylus and control

    Chromebook x2 Stylus Pen isa full-sized pen with interchangeable linings — one for smooth writing and sketching, the other for the physical feel of a pen or pencil. The battery is already built into the stylus.

    Ports are located at the bottom of the tablet.HP Chromebook x2 module. This option is convenient and does not lead to the problem of tangled wires. The volume key is here on the right side, and the power button on the top edge. They are made of the same metal as the frame, and when pressed they feel a soft click.

    Stereo sound

    HP's Chromebook x2 has two stereo speakers formetal grill to the right and left of the display on the front panel. The color of the grilles is chosen in such a way that they are completely invisible, the sound here is very loud. In fact, the sound from x2 can fill a three-room apartment. However, due to the small size of the drivers, the sound is imperfect.

    HP Chromebook x2 stereo speakers are designed withcollaboration with Bang & Olufsen, which is marked by a sticker on the keyboard. They are suitable for watching videos and movies, but when listening to music you should not expect something supernatural. Although the sound is balanced, and even listen to low frequencies.

    High-quality display

    HP paid much attention to the display of HP Chromebookx2. Yes, here the scope is wider than in many hybrids, but this solves the big problem of random clicks in tablet mode. The device can be comfortably held in the hands and at the same time does not close part of the screen.

    The back of the display is curved, and on the front theresmall bevel along each edge. This is almost imperceptible, although it is combined with a similar bevel around the speakers. The panel sensor is very sensitive and does not require much pressure, despite the standard Gorilla Glass.

    The response speed is very fast, which is easyChecked with HP Wacom stylus. And although before only Samsung was the only company that produces similar products with touch-sensitive styli. Now HP has improved it.

    The input is intuitive, smooth, without delay andwith high accuracy. Taking notes or performing any other task with the stylus will now become a familiar and even enjoyable experience. The battery built into the pen is enough for a very long time, I did not even notice in a week that the stylus began to discharge.

    Display brightness did not disappoint, Chromebook x2 withYou can use comfort in any conditions - even at home, even on a street on a clear day. It is strange that HP does not report the exact parameters of this display. But, indoors, I set the brightness by about 25%, and on the street no more than 50%.

    With 2K resolution it’s almost impossible to notice.single pixel. Therefore, when watching a video or working in applications, the image is crystal clear. The viewing angles of this display are almost 170 degrees. In general, the x2 screen is so bright, clear and with rich colors that it is even alarming in terms of autonomy. However, you should not be afraid.

    Chromebook x2 cameras

    The x2 camera application has the least features. There is a grid for alignment of images, a timer and the ability to shoot video. The biggest difference between HP Chromebook x2 and other Chrome OS devices was the ability to switch between the main and front cameras.

    Here you will not find any filters, stickers, HDRmode or similar functions. All this follows from the limitations of Chrome OS with the lack of specialized functions. So you’ll have to use Android apps that are compatible with your Chromebook.

    The front HD camera is pretty standard here. It does not disappoint, but also not impressive. On the other hand, we have a main camera, which distinguishes the Chromebook x2 from the others. It quickly focuses and tolerably shoots in good light. Shutter speed and autofocus are not the fastest, but you don’t have to complain. Blur only becomes a problem if your hands are trembling when shooting.

    As I said, with good lighting, the pictures are clearand with good detail. The quality of the HP Chromebook can be compared with smartphones that have an 8-megapixel camera. With difficult lighting, the camera is lost, although despite the loss of detail and the appearance of blur, I will say - x2 can compete with most smartphones in the budget and average price range.

    Pixelate appears only with weaklighting. This is not surprising - smartphones have the same problems. The color rendition is close to natural, no matter what kind of lighting is taken. For the most part, the main source of camera problems is software, and this is Google’s responsibility, not HP.

    System and software

    You can often hear that you have to wait longChrome OS updates. But this absolutely does not apply to HP Chromebook x2. Chrome OS is based on the open source Chromium engine, and it largely depends on cloud computing and applications.

    Web applications in the latest versions of this systemapproaching the same level of performance as native software. However, it is worth considering an important feature - we have access to Android applications and initially there is a full package of standard applications - from office programs to entertainment software.

    If necessary, you can even sync your Chromebook x2 and your smartphone to access messages or other features.

    Performance

    As far as performance is concerned, I am notimagine how can make HP Chromebook x2 start to hang or slow down. The dual-core Intel Core m3 processor worked equally well with any number of tabs. It's nice that I had enough power to easily run Photoshop and work with files of any size, while other applications were running in the background.

    No game could make meDoubt the power of the Chromebook x2. And I ran both Into the Dead 2, and Need for Speed: No Limits. In tablet mode, everything is fine too. The only thing I have to note is that there are minimal delays due to poorly optimized partitions of the Chrome OS operating system, but only when switching between applications.

    All this makes x2 not only convenient for work andentertainment, but also the best among competitors. Although, on the whole, the entire segment of devices on Chrome OS was never noted in cases when overheating occurred, I have to note that the Chromebook x2 doesn’t even have a hint of heat.

    HP Chromebook x2 autonomy

    I'll start with the fact that the battery life HPChromebook x2 struck me. HP says its hybrid laptop can run for up to 12.5 hours on full charge. No other device on Chrome OS is capable of this.

    I was extremely surprised that after a serioustesting, working with image editors, watching videos and websites, I still had 80% of the charge. This was enough for another 10 hours of using the device.

    If you use Chromebook x2 to work inAs usual, it will probably last even a few days. Naturally, the autonomy will be different for different users, but with the most intensive use of the battery is discharged only by the end of the day.

    Charges HP x2 from a 45 W adapter to100% of the battery is replenished with energy in 1.5 hours. Charging tends to slow down as the battery fills, so that up to 50% of the process will be very fast.

    Total

    There are more powerful Chrome devices on the marketThe OS, however, does not make the HP Chromebook x2 less perfect. Given its cost, there should be no comments in principle. Design, build quality, sound, stylus capabilities, attention to detail - all this makes x2 the only one among them.

    Should I buy?

    Chromebook x2's biggest problem completelysubjective and depends on whether the ultra-bright 12.3-inch display with a 2K resolution is large enough for you. For those who are looking for a more expensive gadget or really need an Intel Core i-series processor, the question of choice becomes more difficult. In fact, not many users fall into this category, mainly for software or application developers.

    Even in this case, HP x2 is more than enough. For most users who want to upgrade to Chrome OS or upgrade their current device, it would be difficult to find something that looks, feels and works better for a price of $ 600 ($ 39,500). HP has created a device so good that it has no competitors.

    Benefits

    • Charging is very fast.
    • Perspective components.
    • Ultra-bright display panel.
    • Gorilla Glass touchscreen display.
    • High-quality aluminum assembly.
    • Comfortable, ergonomic keyboard.
    • The kit includes a Wacom EMR stylus.
    • The battery will withstand a whole day of work.
    • The main camera is almost like a smartphone.
    • Sophisticated, balanced design.
    • Price below performance and quality.
    • Light and thin, but with solid construction.
    • The speakers are loud and well balanced.

    disadvantages

    • Chrome OS is still far from ideal.
    • The camera rents in poor light.
    • Bass from the speakers is not sharp enough.
    • Despite its small size, it can be a problem with prolonged use.

    HP Chromebook x2 Chromebook - Video