HP’s premium laptop revamp: more OLED displays, 12th-gen Intel CPUs

Pretty much every Envy and Spectre notebook is getting refreshed specs and features

While you may not have gotten around to spring cleaning, HP certainly has. Today the company is essentially refreshing its entire premium laptop portfolio with a bunch of new Envy and Spectre notebooks – both clamshells and 2-in-1s.

The two stars of the updated Envy line are the Envy x360 13.3-inch and the Envy 16-inch. Both systems can be configured with either an OLED display or a more traditional LCD panel. All of the new Envy laptops are also getting upgraded 5-MP webcams with head tracking and beamforming mics to help you look and sound your best during video calls. You even get native handwriting recognition and a hidden magnetic stylus mount on the side of the system. And, unlike a lot of other PC makers, HP’s pen actually comes in the box.

The new Envy 13 features a 2-in-1 design and can be equipped with either an LCD or OLED display and a 12th-gen Intel CPU.
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Starting at a reasonable $900, the Envy x360 13 looks like a great option for people on the move, thanks to its flexible 2-in-1 design and a battery that HP claims lasts up to 20.5 hours on a charge. You also get support for fast charging over USB-C, with HP promising you can refill half the battery in just 45 minutes. And for people who want to be a bit more discrete while working away from home, HP also introduced a quiet performance mode designed to keep fan noise to a minimum.

However, for people who want beefier specs, HP claims the Envy 16 is the most powerful Envy yet. Starting at $1,400, not only does it support refresh rates up to 120Hz, it also has a slightly taller 16:10 display for enhanced productivity. It can also be equipped with up to 32GB of RAM and either an NVIDIA RTX 3060 GPU or one of Intel’s new Arc A370M cards.

Created to support mobile content creation, the new HP Envy was designed to allow users to output video to up to three external 4K displays simultaneously.
Sam Rutherford/Engadget

So while it might not be quite as powerful as a souped-up gaming laptop, its performance is still pretty impressive. HP says the Envy 16 was designed to support video output for up to three external 4K monitors on top of its default display. When I got a chance to test that setup in person, everything felt snappy and responsive. I was able to flick Photoshop from one monitor to another without a hitch, even while having video editing apps and a bunch of other files open in the background.

HP also upgraded the Envy 16’s sound system with a rather powerful quad-speaker setup. Meanwhile, other handy upgrades include an IR sensor for speedy face unlock and even a sensor that can detect when the laptop is stashed in a bag, to help prevent unnecessary battery drain.

Alongside the Envy x360 13 and Envy 16, HP also made a 15-inch 2-in-1 with the Envy x15 and a big-screen option in the Envy 17.
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That said, if the Envy x360 13 and Envy 16 don’t quite fit your needs, there’s also a refreshed Envy x360 15.6-inch 2-in-1 with support for both 12th-gen Intel CPUs or 5000 series Ryzen chips from AMD. And if you need a notebook with an even bigger screen, there’s the Envy x360 17.3-inch, which can be equipped with up to a 4K display. But notably, its GPU tops out at an NVIDIA RTX 2050, so it’s not nearly as powerful as the Envy 16. That said, starting at $1,100 it is a bit cheaper.

Finally, rounding out HP’s deluge of updates are the revamped Spectre x360 13.5 and the Spectre x360 16, which feature slightly curvier, rounded edges in addition to refreshed components. Now that might not sound like a big deal, but previous Spectres often felt too sharp and edgy for their own good. That’s because while those sleek lines looked great in photos, they had a tendency to dig into your palm or wrist while typing, which got uncomfortable real fast.

HP's updated Spectre x360 13 is the company's most premium ultraportable, sporting a 3:2 display and an aluminum CNC-machined chassis.
Sam Rutherford/Engadget

Both models are part of Intel’s Evo platform, so you can expect bright screens, near instant wake times and support for dual Thunderbolt 4 jacks, along with some luxury features like Gorilla Glass screens which aren’t available on all of the new Envy machines. And for people who really care about productivity, both new Spectres also get 3:2 aspect ratio displays with either LCD or OLED panels, to help make multitasking even easier.

And of course, the latest Spectres feature updated internals including 12th-gen Intel CPUs and support for an ARC A370M GPU on the 16-inch model. However, with starting prices of $1,250 and $1,650, HP’s most premium laptops do cost a bit more than comparable Envy notebooks.

All of HP’s new Envy and Spectre laptops are on sale today, direct from HP or from select third-party retailers such as Best Buy and Amazon.