HP ZBook x2 G4 – Nothing like an ordinary laptop

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If you are looking for a traditional laptop, then just stop right here. This is because what you are about to see isn’t anything like your regular laptop, but a totally redesigned machine to suit the artistic of minds out there.

Yes, it is true when we say this but a common student won’t be utilizing the full potential of the HP Zbook x2, unlike the digital artist, photographer, and creative minds. Through shortcuts, you can easily access most of the stuff, and aided by a truly 4k matte display you wouldn’t miss out on any details. All of this is further supported by a professional-grade stylus for easier editing.

The maxed out version of the laptop is though expensive than the most expensive of laptops, and when we say this we mean it since you are looking anywhere near the $3,500 for the best model. But then, at least you are getting one of the most unique thing out there.

Design

The laptop’s design speaks for itself; there isn’t anything like it, literally. Instead of a rectangular shape, the zBook appears to be an octagon. It caters to the professional minded, by offering an all metallic lid colored in plain gunmetal gray to provide elegance. Somewhere between the top and bottom left of the screen is a simple yet attractive Z logo which reflects. The lid is surrounded by numerous vents for cooling purposes. The pull-out kickstand pulls out to nearly 165 degrees.

The lid on the other hand houses 14 inches 4k matte display. The bezels are thick though but there is a sound reason for that: There are six physical shortcut buttons on each side of the screen which can be re-assigned. Furthermore, on the top is a web-cam surrounded by infrared cameras, to make it easier for you to log on to Windows.

The keyboard like the lid is also octagonal in shape and relies on magnetic attraction to stick to the bottom of the tablet. While the color scheme is similarly gray for the keyboard, its keys are painted in black. It is true that with such a huge size, the laptop might be prone to drops and shocks, but being MIL-STD 810G tested covers for that.

Weight and Dimensions

The laptop measures 14.5 x 8.9 x 0.8 inches and has a weight of 4.9 pounds including the keyboard. If you remove the keyboard, expect the thickness to decrease by 0.2 inches and the weight by 1.1 pounds. Comparing with other laptops in the industry, the 15-inch Microsoft Surface Book 2 weighs 4.2 pounds and measures 13.5 x 9.9 x 0.9 inches. On the other hand the 15-inch MacBook Pro is 13.8 x 9.5 x 0.6 inches and 4 pounds. The choice is yours.

Ports

There isn’t any port on the side of the keyboard, but rather on the side of the tablet itself. The right side houses a fingerprint reader, an SD card slot, a USB 3.0 port, an HDMI output, a pair of Thunderbolt 3 and a charging jack.

While on the left side, there is the usual headphone jack and also a lock slot.

Display

If you looking for one of the clearest and vivid 4k display panel out there, then the HP zBook 14 inches is the one. On the matte display is a chemical coating. When using the screen with a stylus this makes the screen as if you are writing on a piece of paper. Courtesy, the HP’s Dream Color Display, you are able to differentiate between more than a whopping billion colors.

The display has an impressive sRGB gamut coverage percentage of 178 percent which is way above the workstation average of 150 percent. This makes it way ahead of its competitors like the Apple MacBook Pro with 126 percent, and the Surface Book 2 with 131 percent.

On the other hand, its brightness level is just above part, with 313 nits recorded on the light meter. The workstation average stands at 308 nits, but MacBook Pro has a whopping 460 nits, while the Surface Book 2 with an equally well 417 nits.

Keyboard and Touchpad

The best thing about its keyboard is the perfect travel i.e. 1.5 millimeters. On top of that, the 68 grams of actuation force is just perfect too. There isn’t a dedicated numpad, but that’s acceptable since your typing speed is exceptional without it. Though, the keyboard is a bit flat rather than being slightly angled.

Another great aspect about it is that you don’t need to attach the keyboard using Pogo pins to use it. It can also be used wirelessly. For this, there is a mini USB port on the back of the keyboard to charge it. In case its connected to the tablet, it will charge automatically.

Touchpad stands at 4.3 x 2.5 inches and is spacious enough for your everyday jobs. Not only this, but the gestures also perform quickly.

Battery Life

Battery life is perhaps the only real downside to the laptop. On continuous use over WiFi, with some graphics testing and playing videos at a brightness level of 150 nits, the HP Zbook lasted just 4 hours and 9 minutes, but this is partly because of a 4k display panel which is power-hungry. The category average stands at 6 hours and 5 minutes, therefore you will need to be near a wall socket every 4 hours sadly.

On the other hand, if you disable the Dream Color option, you get a battery life of 6 hours and 5 minutes, which might be beneficial when you want to preserve battery time, but not a good choice.

Configuration

Using the customization tool, you can get the cheapest zBook you can get for $1,647.36 but in exchange you are compromising a lot: It would only have an Intel Core i5-8250U CPU, 8GB of RAM, a 128GB SATA SSD, a 4K non-DreamColor display, and no webcam, no discrete GPU, no fingerprint reader, no stylus and, instead of Windows 10 pre-installed, it would ship with FreeDOS 2.0. For $3,623.04, you are looking at a Zbook with an Intel Core i7-8650U CPU, 32GB of RAM, a 512GB PCIe SSD, a Nvidia Quadro M620 with 2GB of VRAM and HP’s DreamColor display.

Though if you think that the customizability options are a tad bit too much for you then there are four categories you can choose from: There’s one for photographers at $2,699, for digital artists at $2,429, for video editors at $2,900, and for professional digital artists and photographers at $3,279.

Our Verdict

The HP zBook has a great stylus along with an excellent shortcut software. It is further aided by a keyboard which unravels blazing typing speeds. The only issues with the laptop might be its below average battery life, and that it is far too much expensive.

At the end of the day, what you are getting is a powerful art tool, but then again, the choice is yours

 

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