The price-performance laptop for video editing in 2021: HP Envy x360 13 (Ryzen)

The Envy x360 13 with the HP Ryzen Edition Ryzen 5 4500U CPU is an eight-core computer with AMD Radeon graphics that can handle demanding video and photo editing tasks, which is different from other laptops in the even higher price range.

It is not easy to find a laptop for video editing on a limited budget. In terms of video editing, the more cores, the better. The best video editing laptops, such as Dell XPS 15 and MacBook Pro 16 inches, will cost a huge amount of money. Fortunately, HP released the Envy x360 13 with AMD’s latest Ryzen 5 4500U CPU. An eight-core computer with AMD Radeon graphics that can handle demanding video and photo editing tasks, unlike other laptops in the price range or even higher. Envy x360 actually beats many high-end laptops.

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Envy x360 even has an excellent display, with a fairly wide color gamut (71% of AdobeRGB and 96% of sRGB) and a DeltaE of 2.26 (not the most accurate, but not terrible). But it is still a bright screen of 399 nits and has an excellent contrast ratio of 1110:1 (we think a contrast ratio of more than 1,000:1 is indeed very good). You can also get 8GB RAM and 128GB SSD, which can be upgraded to 256GB. In addition, Envy x360 is also a beautiful-looking 360 convertible 2-in-1 pen holder, which can provide you with some creative flexibility. This is an excellent creative laptop at an unbelievably low price.

HP’s Envy line occupies a secondary position under the company’s high-end laptop Spectre.

Exterior

The Envy x360 13 is an all-metal notebook computer made of aluminum stamping. The elegant dark blue is also an option for the Spectre x360 13. The difference here is that the ghosts are made of aluminum, but you can’t see the difference if you hold them side by side. The Envy x360’s appearance demonstrates high quality, and because Envy’s frame has been reduced, these two computers are very small for a 13-inch laptop.

Envy x360 is also quite thin and light. 0.65 inches, thinner than the 0.67 inches Spectre x360, and heavier than the 2.92 pounds Spectre x360. The Envy x360 is smaller than the Lenovo IdeaPad Flex 5, which is 0.82 inches thick and weighs 3.3 pounds. Compared with the previous Envy, HP has done a great job in adding more computers to a thinner chassis-if you consider the overall design of the Envy, you will find that it does occupy the space of the Spectre x360.

As a two-in-one model, Envy x360 feels very sturdy in four modes: clamshell, tent, media and tablet. The hinge is very smooth in operation, but when you move the screen, it only swings slightly. It is not as compact as the Spectre x360, but better than the IdeaPad Flex 5. Here, the difference between the premium Spectre x360 and the mid-range Envy x360 is smaller than you might expect.

Speaking of beauty, the HP Envy x360 13 is not as luxurious as the gem-cut Spectre, but it is still an attractive notebook. It is not so luxurious as to say it is smooth-its clean lines and streamlined shape make its design cohesive and look good from any angle. Compared with the more bland Lenovo Flex 5 14 Ryzen, Envy is a more refined notebook.

Connectivity is about what is expected on thin and light machines. It has two large-port USB-A 3.1 interfaces, which support the traditional USB-A 3.1 interface, which is good. There is also a microSD card reader and a USB-C 3.2 interface (which can charge the laptop, although there is a dedicated plug ).

performance

AMD’s Ryzen 4000 chip is impressive. Every CPU-equipped laptop we tested, including some economical ones, performed much better than Intel’s 10th-generation alternatives. In fact, whether you are talking about Ice Lake or Comet Lake, there is a Ryzen 4000 chip that will beat it-you have to jump to 45 watts of Intel components for better performance.

The performance of the HP Envy x360 13 is also good, but not as fast as some other Ryzen machines. For example, in Geekbench 5, it scored 1101 points in the single-core test and 4485 points in the multi-core test. In contrast, the Lenovo IdeaPad Flex 5 equipped with Ryzen processors has 1096 and 4543 CPUs, respectively. In contrast, the Acer Spin 3 equipped with Intel’s 10th-generation Core i5-1035G1 scored 1215 and 3615 points, respectively, so it is faster in single-core mode and much slower in multi-core mode. The Spectre x360 13 with the i7-1065G7 core scored 1,164 points and 3,981 points, making Envy a faster brother.

display

HP equipped my review machine with a low-power 400 nit Full HD IPS display. On the basis of the standard power 300 nit Full HD display, you need to upgrade it for $50, and you can also buy HP’s latest privacy screen technology for another $60, which can make both sides of the display blank . I like the display HP chose for the Envy x360 13. It is very bright at 399 nits and has a strong contrast at 1110:1 (we like to see contrast ratios of 1000:1 or more). Its color gamut is only average-for high-end notebooks, 71% sRGB and 96% sRGB, the accuracy is not the best, only 2.26 (1.0 or lower is considered excellent).

Envy’s display is not as good as some other laptops. For example, the full HD display of the Dell XPS 13 clamshell has better colors, 77% AdobeRGB, 97% sRGB, more accurate colors at 1.53, and a higher contrast ratio of 1440:1. But 377 nits is not so bright. You can get the same display as the Envy on the Spectre x360 13, and more advanced models also provide a 4K OLED display with absolutely spectacular color and contrast. This is an option that Envy x360 cannot check.

In the end, the downward-emitting speakers sounded amazingly loud, without distortion. That was a surprise. There is no bass, but the midrange and treble are clear, and I can listen to them at will with the speakers. However, in addition to Apple’s macbook, almost all laptops are like this.

Keyboard and touchpad

The keyboard of the HP Spectre x360 laptop is my second favorite keyboard, second only to the brand new magic keyboard on Apple’s latest macbook. They have a lot of travel and beautiful large key covers with good spacing, and have a click mechanism to avoid any hint of bottoming. I type on these keyboards as fast as any other keyboard-including the Apple keyboard. Why should I mention the more expensive Ghost keyboard? Because as far as I know, this is exactly the same as the keyboard on the Envy x360. Once again, HP has eliminated a key difference between the two machines.

Envy x360’s touchpad is also similar to Spectre, but the surface is not as smooth as Spectre. However, it supports Microsoft’s precision touchpad protocol, so multi-touch operation is perfect. Interestingly, I prefer the click function of Envy touchpad to Spectre’s-it is softer and makes people more confident that a button is actually pressed.

Envy x360 is equipped with a touch screen, of course it is a two-in-one, and its working performance is as usual. It also supports Microsoft’s latest pen protocol, promising longer battery life (up to 30 days) and a more natural tilt function to match 4096 pressure sensitivity levels. Yes, you guessed it, this is something that the ghost does not have-even though the pen is not tied to jealousy.

Finally, a fingerprint scanner is embedded next to the arrow keys on the keyboard, which works very well. However, it does not include the Windows Hello over facial recognition system like spendier laptops. Envy x360 is equipped with a privacy screen for the camera, but unlike Spectre, it is a physical protective cover that can be activated by pressing a dedicated button on the keyboard. It’s neat to watch the lid appear when you press the button.

There is also a dedicated microphone mute button, which is another privacy feature, passed down from the ghost line.

Battery life

There is no final conclusion on the efficiency of Ryzen 4000, but it seems that the chip cannot beat Intel yet. The Envy x360 13 has a battery life of 51 watt-hours, and its low-power display has helped some other laptops achieve amazing battery life. Even so, Envy’s results are not at the top of our list.

In the web browsing test, Envy’s battery life was just over 9 hours. The web browsing test is the best indicator of how long the battery takes to run typical productivity tasks. This is a good score, but well below the 12 hours of the Dell XPS 13. It really beat the Lenovo IdeaPad Flex 5, which lasted less than 8 hours.

In our demanding Basemark web benchmark test, Envy lasted less than four hours. This is a very high score, but it was beaten by XPS 13’s 4.7 hours. IdeaPad Flex 5 is only 8 minutes shorter than iPhone. Finally, in our video test of looping a local video clip, Envy lasted 13 hours, while XPS 13 and IdeaPad Flex 5 lasted 14.5 hours and 11 hours, respectively. This is a test for low-power display to demonstrate its value.

In general, as long as you don’t use the Ryzen CPU too tightly, you can use Envy x360 13 to get close to a day’s work efficiency. I suspect that Intel’s 10th generation cpu is more efficient than Ryzen 4000, but this is not what I can prove—we still don’t have enough data.

Brief summary

The HP Envy x360 13 created a problem for HP. It’s faster than the more expensive Spectre x360 13, and it’s about the same. If you are not looking for a 4K display, then I can’t find any reason to spend more money on Spectre. This is a high evaluation of Envy, making it a great two-in-one product at a moderate price. Envy really doesn’t have many shortcomings, although battery life is not its biggest advantage, and it is a pity that the pen is not included.

The structure of Envy x360 13 is good enough, as long as you need it, its performance will remain for many years. The addition of Raiden 3 means you will be able to connect modern peripherals. However, the one-year warranty period is typical and disappointing.

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