HP Spectre x360 16 (16-aa0000) review – The Best 2-in-1 Just Got Better?

Design and construction

The all-metal chassis of the HP Spectre x360 16 (16-aa0000) looks modern and clean in a dark color. After two days of testing, it’s hard to spot any fingerprints on the matte surface – nice! The rigidity seems very good. You can bend the lid a bit in the middle but aside from that, it’s hard to twist the unit since the display has a glass cover on top. The only thing thing that we can say about the base is that it feels built like a tank. The profile thickness is 19.9 mm. The iGPU-only devices weigh 2.076 kilos while the dGPU models are a bit heavier – 2.173 kg.

You can open the lid with a single hand somewhere around up to 45 degrees, after that, the front of the base will jump up and you have to use both hands to fully open the device.

The bezels around the high-res panel are thin and the top one houses a 9MP IR Web camera with an E-shutter. The camera supports Windows Hello login, night mode, and AI noise reduction.

The diagonal corners on the sides are something like a trademark for the series.

This transformer can be used in a normal (boring) clamshell mode but you can fold the keyboard back against the display and voila – you already have a tablet in your hands! The notebook can lay fully flat on an even surface.

The backlit keyboard with big keycaps is surrounded by two tall grills for the top-firing tweeters. Perhaps that’s the main reason for the lack of a NumPad section. Still, the board is comfortable for long hours of typing – the key travel is extra long and the feedback is presently clicky. The only con here is the hard-to-press half-sized “Up” and “Down” Arrow keys. The power button in the top right corner doubles as a fingerprint reader. The touchpad – this thing is huge! The buttonless unit is super smooth and precise. In addition, the clicks are quiet which is great.

The bottom panel is home to a big ventilation grill, two long rubber feet, and two cutouts for the front-firing woofers. The heat is guided via a vent on the back of the laptop. The display sits pretty high off the base and that’s why the hot air can reach the panel just when the lid is almost opened at 180 degrees.


On the left side, there is an Audio combo jack and a USB Type-A 3.2 (Gen. 2) port with HP Sleep & Charge function. The right side houses two Thunderbolt 4 / USB4 40 Gbps ports (that support USB Power Delivery 3.0, DisplayPort 2.1, and HP Sleep and Charge), and in between them is placed an HDMI 2.1 for up to 8K@60Hz external displays.

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