With laptops getting more common and sophisticated by the day, it should be no surprise if a manufacturer decides to go all out to set its products apart. So far we’ve seen extreme designs from the likes of the Acer Predator Triton 900, the use of two 4K displays by Asus ZenBook Pro Duo, and now we have the world’s smallest UltraBook. Introducing the GPD P2 Max.
GPD is a small Hong Kong-based tech company that specializes in making small laptops and handheld gaming consoles. While the rest of its products may be impressive, what caught our attention was the latest P2 Max. Right off the bat, bold claims were made and this was called “The world’s smallest UltraBook”.
Now don’t get me wrong, we’ve seen laptops this small, possibly even smaller. However, they call into the category of NetBooks that weren’t powerful enough to replace laptops. So you can imagine calling something of minuscule dimensions an UltraBook can raise a few eyebrows. So let’s have a look at the specs and features of the GPD P2 Max to see if it really is an UltraBook and should you buy it.
The GPD P2 Max is made out of an aluminum unibody with beautiful chamfered edges. Normally, laptops with construction like this suffer from being too heavy, However, in this case, due to the smaller dimensions of the P2 Max, it is easy to carry around with a few fingers. Open the lid and move to the lower clamshell, you’ll see the keyboard. Now, I’m impressed at how GPD managed to integrate a full-sized keyboard in a device this small. Albeit, it doesn’t have a number pad or even backlighting but that can be forgiven.
You do, however, notice the lack of space when you look at the trackpad beneath it. It’s absolutely minuscule and will get some getting used to. Above the keyboard, you find the power button and integrated into it, is the fingerprint scanner. Move up, and you’ll notice that the webcam is integrated inside the hinge, which is clever. However, this does mean that all your video calls will be made from an awkward angle so bear that in mind.
If you come to the upper clamshell, you’ll find the small display. However, it doesn’t look as small because the bezels are thankfully kept tiny and are black. When the screen is off, it feels as if the whole panel is the display, which is always a good thing. Turn the laptop over, and you’ll notice a pretty subtle lid. It doesn’t have any logo or lettering on it. It’s just plain simple aluminum that feels premium to the touch, though I would’ve preferred a logo, maybe backlit by the display like the Apple Macbook.
Under the hood of the P2 Max, you get two CPU options: an 8th Intel® Core™ m3-8100Y and Intel® Celeron® Processor 3965Y. Both are paired to an integrated Intel® UHD Graphics 615 GPU. It’s not exactly a powerhouse but then again it was never trying to be one in the first place. It will get you through all light to medium intensity software that an average person uses without breaking a sweat. What’s more is that, in order to counter thermal throttling, the P2 Max has liquid cooling, which is rare in a non-gaming laptop. It’s safe to say that even if you put this device through its paces, it will not disappoint you in terms of raw performance.
As far as RAM and Storage are concerned, you get two configuration option. If you go with the Celeron processor, you get an 8GB 1866MHz LPDDR3 RAM with a 256GB PCIe M.2 SSD. However, if you go with the Core m3 processor, you get a 16GB 1866MHz LPDDR3 RAM with a 512GB PCIe M.2 SSD. It really amazes me how GPD has managed to package a device this small with specs like these. Needless to say, you won’t be worried about the RAM or storage anytime soon after buying this, especially the latter variant.
The display on the GPD P2 Max is an 8.9″ 2560×1600 sRGB InfinityEdge IPS touch panel. I must say, for such a small display, the resolution is insane. With a pixel density of 340ppi, it is one of the sharpest displays you’ll find on any current laptop. What’s even more impressive is that this display is touch-sensitive and can detect stylus input. This takes the productivity factor all the way up to 11. I love this display and believe that GPD did an amazing job with it.
The battery on the P2 Max is a 9200mAh 35Wh Li-ion unit that does it’s job pretty well. In fact, GPD rates it to last 8 hours while playing a continuous 1080p video, which is truly impressive. Most traditional UltraBooks fails to achieve even half of that. The charger is a 30W USB PD 2.0 brick that is similar to a smartphone charger. It charges via USB-C and is compact in size, which adds to the already good portability factor of this device.
Due to its smaller dimensions, the P2 Max doesn’t have a whole lot of space when it comes to ports. However, I can assure you that it has all the essentials. On it, you get 2 USB 2.0 ports, a USB Type-C port, a Micro HDMI slot, and a 3.5mm headphone jack. As I’ve mentioned earlier, it’s not much but it’ll get the job done nevertheless. I’m particularly happy about the headphone jack as it’s a dying breed in newer compact devices. Along with these, you get Bluetooth 4.2 and a 5GHz/2.4GHz WiFi Adapter on the Core m3/Celeron processor devices respectively.
Price & Verdict
The Celeron version of the GPD P2 Max will set you back $635 while the Core m3 costs $842. From an objective standpoint, this does seem to be a lot of money for a miniature laptop. But then again, it’s not just a miniature laptop. From the specs, it’s better than most full-sized laptops that you can buy and it adds a portability factor that is unmatched. GPD compares it with the 7″ iPad and it’s definitely better than that in terms of functionality. If you’re looking for an ultra-portable laptop that can cater to your everyday needs, then the GPD P2 Max is the best you can get.