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G4Games » Gadgets » Microsoft Surface Pro vs HP Envy X2 – Sheer Power vs Affordable Versatility

Microsoft Surface Pro vs HP Envy X2 – Sheer Power vs Affordable Versatility

by Mihai Matei on November 26, 2012

Many Windows-based tablet enthusiasts have been waiting for a chance to buy a Windows 8-powered device rather than purchasing an RT tablet, reason why there has been a lot of talk regarding Microsoft’s expected end of the year Windows RT sales figures and the idea that they will not meet the quota.

Nevertheless, the Microsoft Surface Pro offers what the RT version lacks, but will the Surface Pro be the best choice available on this market segment? There are a few alternatives out there such as the Samsung ATIV Smart PC which goes head-to-head with the Surface Pro, and there are also more affordable Windows 8-powered gadgets, like the HP Envy X2 (hit the link for a nice overview). How does the Surface Pro compares with HP’s contender? Join us after the break and find out.

Microsoft Surface Pro vs HP Envy X2 - What You Should Know

Microsoft Surface Pro vs HP Envy X2 - What You Should Know

Microsoft Surface Pro vs HP Envy X2

At the very first glance you realize that the Envy X2 is not as powerful as the ATIV Smart PC Pro or the Surface Pro for that matter, but is that such a bad thing? Truth of the matter is that the Envy X2 seems to be more of a hybrid than the other two, meaning that it better combines the functionality of a tablet with those of a notebook. But, first let’s take a look at the sheer specs and we’ll talk a bit more about the pros and cons.

Product Name Microsoft Surface Pro HP Envy X2
Display Size 10.6 inch 11.6 inch
Display Resolution 1920 x 1080 1366 x 768
CPU Intel Core i5 Intel Atom Z2760 @ 1.8 GHz
GPU Intel HD Graphics 4000 Intel HD Graphics
RAM 4 GB dual channel 2 GB (1x2GB) LPDDR2
Internal Storage 64GB / 128GB 64 GB SSD
Expandable Storage Yes Yes, microSD / SD
Cameras Two 720p HD LifeCams (more info. required) 8 MP main camera with flash / 2 MP front facing sensor
Other Stereo speakers, pen input (stylus included), touch or type keyboard cover (optional) Beats Audio, Keyboard dock included in price
Price TBA (128 GB = $1,163, rumored) $849.99
Release Date TBA December 24

It’s pretty much obvious that the Surface Pro is the more powerful device of the two, but taking a closer look at some of the features really helps X2′s case.

For starters, the keyboard dock is included in the price and the best part about it is that the keyboard module is not a simple cover, it’s a full dock that offers a bigger battery that doubles the life of the tablet, it comes with extra ports such as the SD card reader and it seems to be an all-rounder device, offering a bit of everything.

The price is really attractive as well when compared with the competition. Once again, the X2 is not the most powerful Windows 8-powered tablet but I have a feeling that many enthusiasts will look for a balance between specs and affordability, and when it comes to the price tag, the Envy X2 is right between the Windows RT and the Surface Pro – if the rumored price of the latter turns out to be correct. Nonetheless, one of the X2 selling points is that, unlike the RT, the HP gadget arrives with Windows 8, offering a full-fledged desktop experience.

So, what are your thoughts regarding the matter? Would you buy the more affordable, humbler yet versatile HP Envy X2, or are you planning on going for the Surface Pro in order to benefit from that extra power?

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  • mmv

    The x2 is not a netbook, I have one and am typing on it at the moment. The thing has the specs of a netbook but the battery life, quality of the screen and build in general will convince most. Mind you that I saw the Surface RT and I was surprised with the build quality, its very good as well but not as good as the Envy. The Surface pro will be awesome I am sure but it will be a full 300 to 400$ more expensive, not sure that it worth it.

  • Steve

    The x2 is certainly not a netbook and it’s not a tablet. It’s a full laptop (albeit a smallish one) with a proper keyboard and full Win 8 productivity. It can run Office and any other existing Windows app. And the keyboard is not an add-on, it looks and feels like a laptop, not a tablet with an afterthought-keyboard.

    Win8 is different and quirky, and I’m still making friends with it, but I can see that if you don’t have a touch screen it would be quite frustrating. So this laptop has a touchscreen, which is awesome. The fact that the screen detaches is a huge added bonus. But to call it a tablet undermines its productivity.

    So the price tag, for me, is justified by the fact that, when replacing my 5 year old laptop, I bought one that also acts as a tablet when required. So I don’t have to buy both.

    Granted, if you are running process heavy software, such as CAD or Photoshop, you’ll need a little more power. But for 95% of people who use email, internet, and MS Office applications, this thing has more than enough juice.

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