Review: HP Split X2

One of these is the keyboard, and while the body is pretty much all plastic, the island key keyboard has the right clicking noise, enough travel, and is a comfortable design to type on. It’s not quite as perfect as the keyboards made by the likes of Apple and Lenovo, but in HP’s Split X2 has one of the nicest keyboards we’ve seen from a computer in its class.

The inclusion of a decent touchpad is also a welcome one, with gesture support also thrown in, something we don’t often see in keyboard docks accompanying tablet counterparts.

HP has also built the Split X2 to feel sturdy, surprisingly so. While plastic is the main material used here, the machine carries a fair amount of heft, whether you’re using it in the tablet form only, or docked together with the keyboard section.

The display, however, can’t quite live up to what its brother offered in the Envy X2, a surprise especially given the quality HP included in that laptop, which is a smaller version of the Split.

Weak viewing angles plague the screen on the Split X2.

It’s not an overly terrible display, but it’s certainly not fantastic, and while there are decent viewing angles on both the left and right sides, it’s also obviously not as high-end a display as in the Envy. In fact, unless you push the screen all the way back while you use it like a laptop, you’ll likely find washed out colours.

There’s also a lack of obvious clarity here, no doubt thanks to a weaker resolution, which is just barely above high-definition, and isn’t quite as good as the Full HD panels being offered in competing machines.

We are grateful that HP chose to include a touchscreen, and the touch support offered here works well, complimenting the multi-touch mouse well. Windows 8 tends to prefer touchscreens, and while we wish the resolution was better, this will suit most fine.

Weak viewing angles plague the screen on the Split X2.

Remove the tablet from its dock, though, and you’ll probably want to steer clear from using the screen section in the preferred landscape mode, as those weaker viewing angles really show up.

In the tablet section only, the weight is very obvious.

We’re not talking about a comfortable tablet to use by itself, which is hardly surprising given the 13 inch size. We’ve never really considered the 13 inch size to be a portable tablet set of dimensions, and after using the Split X2 tablet section, it most definitely isn’t.

If you end up using the Split X2, leave the tablet inside the keyboard dock. Trust us. It’s easier this way.

Over in the battery performance, the Split X2 won’t win any awards, managing around three hours on the tablet battery, and maybe pulling an hour and a half more when docked with the keyboard and battery section.

It’s not an immense amount of life, though the chip inside this machine does do more heavy lifting that what HP used inside the Envy, so doesn’t surprise us.

There might be more gains for battery life if HP had decided on using a fourth-generation Intel Core processor instead of the one HP settled on, but we’ll never know.

Conclusion

HP’s Split X2 isn’t quite the same as its little brother, the Envy X2, and the inclusion of the Intel Core i5 processor and mediocre 13 inch screen makes the entire package feel like a sub-par tablet laptop hybrid.

As for current value, it just doesn’t have it, with mid-range parts that just don’t add up and a weight that makes it quite hefty. Ultimately, if you can find the Split X2 for much less than the $1299 asking price and need a decent all rounder, it could easily fit that bill.

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Reader Rating0 Votes
Two sets of hard drives, with a 128GB SSD in the tablet and 500GB in the hard drive; Great keyboard;
Less than compelling battery life; Heavy; Not so fantastic screen angles; Very plastic feeling laptop; Older Intel processor;
3.4

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  1. I have one of these devices and I purchased it when they first become available. I rarely use it as a tablet and like the keyboard part as it acts as a stand for the screen also. The problem I have found with this is sometimes the keyboardmouse and 500g harddrive in the keyboard is not detected by the screen. I am currently on the phone with HP now and in future I will buy just a laptop without the ability to separate the screen from the keyboard. It is one less thing to go wrong.

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