With a new batch of 12th Gen Intel Core CPUs, HP Inc. has dropped its HP Pavilion x360 14-inch notebook (14-ek00113dx) which includes a mid-range Core i3 1215U, a powerful mid-range chip that’s also power hungry.
The x360 is a 2-1 in convertible notebook that includes a 14-inch 1920 x 1080 display, Intel Core i3 1215U, 8GB DDR4-3200 MHz RAM, and 256GB NVMe M.2 SSD.
The Intel Core i3 1215U punches above its weight to power through multitasking, streaming and downloading. There was not a hint of lag in general content consumption from loading content-intensive pages to 4K streaming.
The chassis itself is an attractive Space Blue. Carved out of hard plastic, the entire package weighs a hefty 3.35 pounds but maintains a small footprint. The keyboard and trackpad are decent but not exceptional. The unit can be transformed into tent mode and canvas mode to take advantage of the multitouch screen, which was quick and responsive.
There are plenty of ports on the machine including an HDMI out, USB-C for peripherals and charging, a standard charge port with HP Fast Charge for 50 percent charge in 45 minutes, 2 USB-A ports, microSD card reader, and 3.5mm headphone jack.
The 14-inch display itself is a winner with sharp resolution and saturated colors. Speakers tuned by B&O are decent but don’t have much bass. Integrated Intel UHD graphics are mediocre. A copy of CS:GO ran at 30 to 40FPS and felt unplayable.
A problem with the Intel Core i3 1215U is how much power is required to complete general tasks. Stream a 4K video and the fan immediately turns on. Add browsing and downloading, and hot air bellows consistently from the side vent. Consequently, the battery life drains quickly at only 3 hours available with mixed use. In S Mode, which restricts software downloads from the Microsoft Store only, battery is extended by 1-2 hours.
Constant fan noise in addition to a buzzing noise that belted out from the chassis were two quality control issues for the unit.
While the latest Intel 12th Gen chips certainly have the horsepower, the wattage for performance still requires active cooling and hefty battery usage for that power. The HP x360 14-inch suffers because of it, which is a shame because otherwise the 14-inch x360 is a capable mid-range option.