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Review: HP's EliteBook x360 1030 Gets Even More Portable And Powerful

The CRN Test Center gives high marks to the convertible notebook for its slimmed-down bezels and strong battery life.

HP Inc. just keeps improving its premium commercial notebook line, with the EliteBook x360 G3 offering a number of upgrades that users will appreciate.

The 13.3-inch convertible notebook fits onto what is essentially a 12-inch notebook chassis, according to HP, thanks to design updates including 50-percent slimmer bezels around the display.

[Related: Review: HP Raises The Bar On Mainstream Commercial Devices With The EliteBook 830 G5]

Our tryout of the model found strong portability all-around—with a weight of just 2.76 pounds and thickness of 0.62 of an inch—and a 10-percent reduction in overall footprint.

HP says that makes the EliteBook x360 G3 the smallest business convertible to date (and means the company will not continue making the 12.5-inch EliteBook x360, the 1020, which is similarly sized despite its smaller display).

Performance, the keyboard and touchpad, battery life and security are other major highlights of the new x360 1030.

We found terrific performance from the notebook on web browsing and working in applications, with no noticeable slowdowns from heavy multi-tasking. A Geekbench 4 benchmark rated our configuration of the notebook—with an eighth-gen Intel Core i7-8650U chip and 16 GB of RAM—as a stronger performer with a single-core score of 3967 and a multi-core score of 10,685 (though not quite as strong as Dell's Latitude 7390 2-in-1 with the same processor, according to Geekbench).

Our tryout yielded excellent battery life of 8.5 hours, which was a bit better than on the Latitude 7390 2-in-1, which provided us with eight hours.

The keyboard is comfortable and quiet, with keys that are fairly deep for a slim notebook. The touchpad performs smoothly and is sizable for a notebook that is small all-around.

The display, which offers FHD resolution and 400 nits of brightness in our tryout model, is good but not among the best we've tried lately.

Maybe part of why we weren't blown away is we're also currently trying out Lenovo's Yoga C930, which boasts a stunning 4K display. There is, however, a 4K model available for the new EliteBook x360 1030--and if given the choice we'd probably spring for that model.

The notebook is also configurable with HP's built-in privacy screen, Sure View, which helps secure against "visual hacking" attempts by onlookers.

Speaking of security, the EliteBook x360 1030 G3 marks the introduction of Sure Recover--which enables easy repairing of a corrupted system image--to the Elite 1000 lineup.

Other key security features include Sure Click, which ensures that malware doesn't leave browser tabs to reach the PC, and the fourth generation of HP's self-healing BIOS technology, Sure Start.

The EliteBook x360 1030 G3 also offers the now-familiar, eye-pleasing design of the EliteBook 1000 premium line, with a metal body and curved edges that should inspire as much envy as anything in Apple's MacBook series.

The pricing is definitely in the premium commercial notebook range, with our tryout unit priced at $2,149 as configured, though the opening price point for the notebook is $1,449.

For business users that have high expectations for portability, performance and design, however, you really can't go wrong with HP's EliteBook x360 1030 G3.

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