HP Spectre 13 X2:Performance

April 14, 2014 by Michael Wall Reads (28,954)
Editor's Rating

Ratings Breakdown (1-10)

    • Software & Support
    • 5
    • Upgrade Capabilities
    • 4
    • Usability
    • 6
    • Design
    • 6
    • Performance
    • 6
    • Features
    • 7
    • Price/Value Rating
    • 5
    • Total Score:
    • 5.57
    • Rating 1 to 10, top score 10


Equipped with a 1.6GHz Intel Core i5-4202Y CPU, with 4GB of RAM, Intel HD Graphics and a 128GB SSD the HP Spectre 13 X2 offers capable performance for its $1,170 price tag (at the time the review was written). Consumers looking to save some money could opt for the standard 1366 x 768 display, but considering the lower resolution screen only knocks $70 off the price tag, the high-resolution display likely offers the best bang for your buck.

Equipped with an Intel Core i5 processor the Spectre is able to handle basic word and web functions with relative ease. The laptop is also able to handle more demanding Microsoft Office tasks such as complicated excel spreadsheets. With 4GB of RAM the hybrid can juggle multiple tasks simultaneously. NBR was able to watch an HD video stream with 10 opened tabs in the background without noticing a drop in performance.

With Intel HD graphics the Spectre is able to edit HD video and run less demanding game titles such as League of Legends on lowered graphical settings. However, without dedicated graphics the device will not be able to handle more demanding graphical processes like editing 3D videos and higher end game titles. Programs and files also load extremely fast thanks to devices 128GB SSD. The laptop was also able to boot to the Windows 8 home screen from a complete shutdown state at an average of 11 seconds.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOur review unit of the HP Spectre 13 X2 has the following configuration:

  • Windows 8.1 (64-bit)
  • 13.3” Anti-glare FHD (1920 x 1080) LED-backlit IPS display
  • 1.6GHz Intel Core i5-4202Y CPU
  • 4GB DDR3
  • 128GB SSD
  • 802.11 AC WLAN
  • Bluetooth 4.0
  • Dimensions: 13.4” x 7.2” x 0.7”
  • Weight: 4.4 pounds (2.2 pounds Tablet)
  • Base Price: $1,100
  • Price as configured: $1,170


wPrime processor comparisons (lower score means better performance):


PCMark 7 is a newer benchmark and measures overall systems performance (higher scores mean better performance):


3DMark 11 is a benchmark that measures overall graphic card performance for gaming (higher scores mean better performance):

3dM 11

CrystalDiskMark storage drive performance test:



Heat and Noise

The HP Spectre 13 X2 proves cool and quiet, even when under duress. After running two HD streams for 45mintues the device could be comfortably used as both laptop and a tablet. Utilizing a fanless  design, the HP Spectre 13 X2 remains comfortably quiet, even when taxed. 

Battery Life

To test battery life, we used our new PowerMark benchmark in balanced mode. The test consists of a combination of automated web browsing, word processing, gaming and video playback workloads. The test is far more strenuous than our previous test, measuring the machine under a litany of scenarios to better simulate real life use. With the test being far more demanding the scores are understandably lower than our previous benchmark.

Powermark “Balanced” battery life test results (higher score means better battery life):


In our tests the HP Spectre 13 X2 ran for 4 hours and 49 minutes with both the tablet and keyboard dock battery reserves before shutting down. Falling just shy of 5 hours, the HP Spectre 13 X2 offers solid battery life. Of course the second battery reserve in the keyboard dock does come at the cost of the device’s portability, as it is part of the reason why the standalone dock weighs so much.  Battery life is somewhat diminished when relying just on the Tablet’s battery as the device only ran for 3 hours and 51 minutes before shutting down.



All content posted on TechnologyGuide is granted to TechnologyGuide with electronic publishing rights in perpetuity, as all content posted on this site becomes a part of the community.

  1. qikceltic

    A friend who tries all the new notebooks warned me to avoid HP but I didn’t listen. This think is slow, short batt life, glare issues, crashes, overheats and a ton of headaches. Trash product from a garbage company! Avoid!

  2. HiDesertNM

    Its no use for me. Modern UI has poor api’s so modern apps are crap for the most part. Sure you can still use the tab in desktop mode but that would be awkward as well. The tab hitting 2.2 lbs = fail for that use. Convertibles do allot of things but compromise everything trying to be everything. Soon MS will release a start menu for the desktop and I think interest will die for modern. I went into a Verizon store in the mall and guess what? Not even one windows phone for sale. Again, the API’s cripple it for coders. Its really hard to make modern apps that people will actually use and few do. That one reality is why its fruitless to continue building all sorts of weird hardware when the interface itself is not popular. MS will indeed make the desktop more attractive and are doing so. But modern, I just don’t see good things for it long term.

    Here are the facts:
    1. Windows phones are bombing in North America at probably just over 3%. That’s bad.
    2. Windows RT devices have no chance against IOS or Android. That war is already about over.
    3. Desktop windows is reverting back to windows seven design with smart menu, boot to desktop etc.. so for many, modern will be out of site, and little used or not used at all by the majority of users.

    The one thing that would work would be a windows 8 desktop with android combo. And MS is scared to death of such a machine and killed one off earlier this year. If such a beast existed the modern side of things would die and die rapidly. Granted the one thing worse then a windows 8 convertible is a pure Windows RT tab. That of course is the worst PC device one could choose.