HP ENVY 13 vs HP Spectre Folio 13: The Battle Of The Better Sub-Brand

Are you trying to choose a laptop to purchase between the HP ENVY 13 and the HP Spectre Folio 13? This HP ENVY 13 vs HP Spectre Folio 13 comparison review will help you make a decision.

In this article, I will take a comprehensive look at both laptops to discover their unique features and find out what both laptops have to offer. Hence, I will take a detailed approach to compare both laptop’s design, CPU, RAM, GPU, battery life, and storage performance.

Furthermore, you will be provided with all the essential information that concerns both laptops. At the end of this HP ENVY 13 vs HP Spectre Folio 13 article, you will be able to choose the laptop that suits your needs. 

Based on our comparison of HP ENVY 13 vs HP Spectre Folio 13, we recommend:

HP ENVY 13 vs HP Spectre Folio 13: My Initial Thoughts

As we all know, HP is largely known for its wide range of sub-brands. Their product range is so wide that their sub-brands often consist of more than just laptops.

Interestingly, this HP ENVY 13 vs HP Spectre Folio 13 comparison is a comparison of laptops that belong to two of its big sub-brands. The two laptops being compared are somehow connected since thinner and lighter laptops are becoming increasingly sought after.

Nonetheless, some clear differences distinguish the two laptops. While the HP ENVY 13 is symbolic of the company’s concern for budget-conscious users, the HP Spectre Folio 13 is a reflection of the company’s true premium devices.

If you’re planning to get a new laptop, but you don’t know which to go for between both brands, I’ve got you covered. This comparison will help you choose the one that will suit your needs.

HP ENVY 13 vs HP Spectre Folio 13 Design, Dimension & Weight Comparison

You can hardly go wrong with either the HP ENVY 13 or the HP Spectre Folio 13 in terms of design and build. Moreover, I can barely remember the last time I reviewed an Envy or Spectre laptop without getting the urge to compare their design to Apple’s MacBook design.

With a familiar look, the HP ENVY 13 maintains the sleek and silver metal frame of its predecessor. The stylish chrome HP logo that is centered on the lid of the laptop also adds a bit of style to its appearance.

On the other hand, the HP Spectre Folio 13 doesn’t expose its all-metal body. The laptop is encased in leather, which makes it look and feel unlike any other laptop – including the HP ENVY 13 which it is being compared to.

As unique as the HP Spectre Folio 13’s leather covering is, the laptop can not be regarded as the perfect product. Even though the leather design and its hinge structure are impressive, I found some parts of the laptop to be slightly more susceptible to flexing unlike the ENVY 13.

The leather covering on the HP Spectre Folio 13’s extends to the top deck of its interior. This leather substitutes the cold metal feeling you get when you rest your palm on the keyboard deck.

In fact, the leather on the HP Spectre Folio 13 ensures that there are no sharp edges or corners on the laptop. Meanwhile, the HP ENVY 13 adopts the concave edges feature.

This feature gives the lid and base of the laptop an inward-angled structure that helps to prevent sharp edges. 

The interior of the HP ENVY 13 looks similar to the Spectre Folio’s, but with the exception of the leather covering. Aside from the leather covering, both laptops feature triangular patterns on the speaker grille located above their keyboards. 

Also, both laptops seem to lack color contrasts between their keyboard keys and decks.

Speaking of the keyboard deck, it appears as though HP has implemented the ergo-lift hinge on the ENVY 13. Its bottom deck lifts up slightly to an angle when the lid is fully opened thereby making typing more comfortable.

Due to the sufficient key travel on both the HP ENVY 13 and the HP Spectre Folio 13, typing experience on both laptops is enjoyable. Both laptops’ keyboard keys offer very good tactile feedback.

Likewise, both laptops feature very responsive and smooth touchpads. Even though the ENVY 13’s trackpad was built with plastic, it still matched the sensitivity of the Spectre Folio 13.

On another note, the ENVY 13 isn’t the only laptop with an uncommon hinge, the Spectre Folio 13’s hinge also performs a little bit of “magic”. The Folio’s hinge, which is one of its defining features, allows it to swiftly change from regular laptop mode to tent and tablet modes.

With the Folio, HP incorporates an active pen, which is placed on the right side of the screen. Since the laptop’s hinge is sturdy enough to keep it between tent and tablet modes, you can write or draw on the screen in any of the positions.

Speaking of the screen, both laptops feature extremely thin bezels. The thin bezels on the laptops make the viewing experience on both laptops more immersive.

Both the HP ENVY 13 and the HP Spectre Folio 13 are relatively thin and light. However, there are differences in both laptop’s dimensions and weight.

While the HP ENVY 13 measures 307 x 211.5 x 147 mm, the HP Spectre Folio 13 measures 320.1 x 234.5 x 15.4 mm. Meanwhile, the HP ENVY 13 weighs just 1270 g compared to the HP Spectre Folio 13’s 1470 g.

Aside from the obvious difference in their sizes, you will barely notice the difference in their dimensions. 

Moving to the port selection, there seem to be some differences in their port selection too. On the left of the HP ENVY 13, you get a 3.5 mm audio jack and a USB 3.1 Type-C port.

Meanwhile, the left side of the HP Spectre Folio 13 features a USB 3.1 Type-C port and a 3.5 mm audio jack. Moving over to the right side, you’ll see a USB 3.1 Type-A on the HP ENVY 13, while the right side of the HP Spectre Folio 13 houses 2 Thunderbolt 3 ports.

HP made use of the “drop jaw” expanding flip mechanism to fit some of the HP ENVY 13 ports. Quite contrary to that, HP Spectre Folio 13 features the “gem cut” design.

The audio quality produced from both laptop’s top firing speakers were excellent. 

In conclusion, the HP ENVY 13 is not ugly in any way. In fact, it is one of the most attractive laptops today.

However, we are comparing it to the Spectre Folio, which is made of leather and has a more expensive and premium appearance. Many would conclude that the Spectre Folio is the more expensive laptop if you place it side by side with the HP ENVY 13.

Besides, a 2-in-one laptop provides more versatility, more entertainment alternatives, and is more portable. You have more choices for creativity and connectivity because you can use it as a tablet with a touch screen.

Hence, the Spectre Folio scores an eight in this HP ENVY 13 vs HP Spectre Folio 13 design comparison. Meanwhile, the HP ENVY 13 scores a seven.

HP ENVY 13 vs HP Spectre Folio Processor (CPU) Performance Comparison

Since both Intel-powered HP ENVY 13 and the Spectre Folio 13 make use of low-power Intel processors, their performance is quite similar. Also, it is worth mentioning that the ENVY 13 uses 7th-generation Intel processors rather than the 8th-generation ones found in the Spectre Folio.

To be precise, HP equipped the ENVY 13 with a quad-core Intel Core i5-8265U. This processor has a base frequency of 1.60 GHz and a maximum frequency of 3.9 GHz.

Meanwhile, the HP Spectre Folio 13 comes with a dual-core Intel Core i7-8500Y. This processor has a base frequency of 1.5 GHz and a maximum frequency of 4.2 GHz.

By all standards, both the ENVY 13 and the Spectre Folio offer a good level of CPU performance. Benchmark results were very different but quite encouraging nonetheless.

On a Cinebench R15 test, the HP ENVY 13 scored 172 points in the single-core aspect, while the HP Spectre Folio 13 scored 132 points. Unlike the Spectre Folio 13, the HP ENVY 13 was able to surpass the 164 average notebook score.

Furthermore, the HP ENVY 13 scored 517 points in the multi-core aspect, while the HP Spectre Folio 13 scored 271 points. Both laptops were unable to equal the 612 category average score.

On another benchmark test, the HP Spectre Folio 13 still lagged behind the HP ENVY. The HP ENVY 13 scored 15,147 in a Geekbench 4.1 test while the HP Spectre Folio 13 scored 8,090.

Just like in the previous benchmark test, only the HP ENVY 13 was able to surpass the category average score – 15,085.

In practice, both the HP ENVY 13 and HP Spectre Folio 13 seemed to handle regular computing tasks well. I was able to send emails, edit documents and browse on both laptops with ease.

Overall, the HP ENVY 13 displayed better performance in most of the tests that were carried out. Hence, it scores an eight in this HP ENVY 13 vs HP Spectre Folio 13 CPU performance comparison.

HP ENVY 13 vs HP Spectre Folio Memory (RAM) Performance Comparison

The HP ENVY 13 comes with 8 GB DDR4 RAM which can be expanded to 16 GB. Meanwhile, the HP Spectre Folio 13 comes with 16 GB LPDDR3 RAM.

The Spectre Folio 13’s RAM cannot be expanded because the maximum RAM size it supports is 16 GB.

With the memory specifications out of the way, lets go further into the details of their performance. 

To determine how well both laptops perform in terms of their RAM performance, I carried out a series of tests. These tests included both real-world and synthetic benchmark tests.

In the real-world performance test, I loaded 20 Google Chrome tabs on both laptops, while I streamed an episode of Power on Netflix. During this process, both laptops operated smoothly and showed no signs of slowing down.

I, therefore, decided to test the HP ENVY 13 and HP Spectre Folio 13 further. In a bid to add extra workload to the one being efficiently handled by both laptops, I began to download the trailer for the Army of the dead movie.

To my surprise, both the HP ENVY 13 and the HP Spectre Folio 13 didn’t stutter nor lag. However, the HP ENVY 13 made a little bit of noise at some point, but not enough to cause any disturbance.

Moving on to synthetic benchmark tests, both laptops displayed impressive performances in the PC Mark 10 tests I ran. In the productivity aspect, the HP ENVY 13 scored 6789 points, surpassing the HP Spectre Folio 13’s 5745 score.

The HP ENVY 13 also beat the HP Spectre Folio in the digital content creation aspect. The HP ENVY 13 scored 3133 points while the HP Spectre Folio scored 1791 points.

Overall, the HP ENVY 13 seemed to produce slightly better results than the Spectre Folio 13 in the benchmark tests. However, the HP Spectre Folio 13 was slightly better in the real-world performance tests. 

Hence, both laptops score an eight in this HP ENVY 13 vs HP Spectre Folio 13 RAM performance comparison.

HP ENVY 13 vs HP Spectre Folio Storage Options & Performance Comparison

The HP ENVY 13 and HP Spectre Folio 13 feature a similar storage drive type. They both come with PCIe NVMe M.2 SSD types.

However, their storage sizes are very different. The HP Spectre Folio 13 offers better storage options than the HP ENVY 13.

To give more detail, the HP ENVY 13 comes with 256 GB storage size.

Meanwhile, HP offers two storage size options for the HP Spectre Folio 13. You can buy the laptop with either 512 GB or 1 TB storage size.

If it is any consolation for the lower storage size, the HP ENVY supports microSD card storage expansion. The HP Spectre Folio 13 doesn’t support a microSD card because it has no card reader.

Moving on to performance, I ran some tests to determine how well both laptops perform in terms of storage. Though both laptops offered excellent storage speeds on the CrystalDiskMark test, the Spectre Folio 13 was the star of the show.

The HP ENVY 13 offered sequential read and write speeds of 849.1 MB/s and 638.7 MB/s respectively. Meanwhile, the Spectre Folio 13 offered a seq read speed of 922.1 MB/s and a seq write speed of 947.5 MB/s.

The HP Spectre Folio 13 didn’t lag behind in the file transfer tests either. It took the Spectre Folio 13 14s to copy a mixed media file of 4.97 GB at a transfer rate of 363.9 MBps.

It outpaced the HP ENVY 13 that took 17 seconds to copy the same mixed media file of 4.97 GB. The HP ENVY 13 copied the file at a transfer rate of 317 MBps.

Overall, the HP Spectre Folio 13 outperformed the HP ENVY 13 in every storage performance that we carried out. In addition to its better performance, the Spectre Folio 13 also offers better storage options than the HP ENVY 13.

As a result, the Spectre Folio 13 scores a nine in this HP ENVY 13 vs HP Spectre Folio 13 storage performance comparison. Meanwhile, the HP ENVY 13 scores an eight for its good storage performance.

HP ENVY 13 vs HP Spectre Folio Graphics Card Performance Comparison

Both the HP ENVY 13 and HP Spectre Folio 13 feature Intel UHD graphic cards. The ENVY 13 comes with an integrated Intel UHD Graphics 620 while the Spectre Folio 13 comes with an integrated Intel UHD Graphics 615.

Although both graphic cards have the same base frequency of 300 MHz, their boost frequencies differ slightly. The ENVY 13 has a boost frequency of 1100 MHz, while the Spectre Folio 13 has a boost frequency of 1050 MHz.

There is an obvious difference in performance power between the two graphic cards. Expect the HP Spectre Folio 13 to be about 20 to 30 percent slower than the ENVY 13 in terms of graphics performance. 

In fact, the gaming tests I carried out further proved this point. I will go further into the details in the succeeding paragraphs.

On the other hand, one thing very common to the two graphic cards is that they are both not meant for intensive gaming. The Spectre Folio 13’s UHD Graphics 615 especially, is not designed for gaming. 

Both laptops can only play old title games and less-graphically demanding games at middle to high detail settings. You will have to reduce the resolution and game settings to play current demanding games at playable rates.

Overall, the HP ENVY 13 offered better frame rates compared to the HP Spectre Folio 13. On low settings, the HP ENVY 13 played Bioshock Infinite at 103.1 FPS, surpassing the Spectre Folio 13’s 50 FPS.

The HP ENVY also ran The Witcher 3 at better frame rates than the Spectre Folio 13. The HP ENVY played The Witcher at 49.2 FPS, while the Spectre Folio 13 played the game at 27.8 FPS.

Furthermore, the HP ENVY 13 played Battlefield V at 29.8 FPS. However, the HP Spectre Folio 13 could barely play the game.

On a 3DMark 11 GPU benchmark test, the HP ENVY 13 still continued to showcase its dominance. The HP ENVY 13 outperformed the HP Spectre Folio 13’s 1088 score with a score of 3622.

Hence, the ENVY 13 scores a seven in this HP ENVY 13 vs HP Spectre Folio 13 graphics card performance comparison. The HP Spectre Folio 13 scores a six for its ability to play some old title games.

HP ENVY 13 vs HP Spectre Folio Battery Life & Performance Comparison

Just like their graphic cards, the ENVY 13 and Spectre Folio 13 both feature the same type of batteries. They are both equipped with Li-ion polymer batteries.

However, both laptop’s battery capacities are different. The ENVY 13 features a 53 Wh Li-ion polymer battery while the HP Spectre Folio 13 features a 54.28 Wh Li-ion polymer.

Based on their battery sizes, the HP Spectre Folio 13 beats the HP ENVY 13 by just a little. 

Aside from their sizes, the HP ENVY 13 and HP Spectre Folio 13 both offer impressive battery runtime. Moreover, not many ultrabooks manage to hit the 10-hour battery life target for ultrabooks.

The HP ENVY 13 lasted 8 hours 50 minutes on our battery test that involved continuous web surfing over Wi-Fi. Meanwhile, the HP Spectre Folio 13 lasted 10 hours 20 minutes.

Although the runtime the HP Spectre Folio 13 offered is 9 hours short of the advertised battery life, I found it to be satisfactory.

Moreover, both the HP Spectre Folio 13 and the HP EVY 13 have fast charging features. Thanks to its fast charging tech, the HP ENVY 13 can charge from empty to 50% in just 30 minutes.

Meanwhile, the HP Spectre Folio 13’s fast charging tech enables it to charge from empty to 50% in 45 minutes. 

Overall, the HP ENVY 13 and the HP Spectre Folio 13 offer relatively good battery lives. Technically, you could even get longer battery life from both laptops depending on your mode of usage.

Both laptops will last longer if you take some battery-saving measures like avoiding long gaming sessions. You can also reduce your display brightness to conserve battery.

In conclusion, the HP Spectre Folio 13 scores an eight in this HP ENVY 13 vs HP Spectre Folio 13 battery life comparison. The HP ENVY 13 scores a seven for its relatively good battery life.

HP ENVY 13 vs HP Spectre Folio 13: Our Rating Summary

To make it easy to compare both laptops, here is a summary our ratings:

HP ENVY 13 vs HP Spectre Folio: Frequently Asked Questions

The HP Envy 13 is an excellent example of a laptop that combines quality features, performance, and design with a reasonable price tag. It’s not the cheapest laptop on the market, nor is it the most expensive, but it’s a fantastic mid-range option that will meet the demands of most individuals. It’s also important to note that it never feels like a compromise.

Based on information provided by HP concerning the laptop, the HP Spectre Folio 13 is a result of Masterful craftsmanship and bold new design. It has been crafted from 100% genuine leather. In addition, it is a groundbreaking device that pushes the boundaries of what you expect from a PC. It will help you stay on top of projects in laptop position or tablet position.

The HP Spectre Folio 13 supports a maximum size of 16 GB RAM.

The HP ENVY 13 battery lasts for 8 hours 50 minutes.

The HP Spectre Folio 13 battery lasts for 10 hours 20 minutes.

The HP ENVY 13 is an affordable and good option for college students.

No, the HP Spectre Folio 13 doesn’t have a dedicated VRAM.

HP ENVY 13 vs HP Spectre Folio 13: My Final Thoughts

It is quite hard to draw a clearly distinguishing line between the HP ENVY 13 and the HP Spectre Folio 13. Both laptops are beautifully designed with splashes of elegance.

However, it is undeniable that the HP Spectre Folio 13 pushes the boundary more in terms of design. If versatility is your top priority, you will be extremely pleased with the HP Spectre Folio 13’s ability to switch between different forms like tablet or tent modes. 

In terms of performance and specs, both the HP ENVY 13 and the HP Spectre Folio 13 are nearly the same. Though on most occasions, the HP Spectre Folio 13 offers better specs, you will have to order your priorities to pick between both laptops.

There are some benefits to consider with the Spectre Folio 13 such as its long battery life and better storage speeds. On the other hand, the HP ENVY 13 also makes a statement for itself with better graphics and CPU performance.

Based on our compressive review and comparison of HP ENVY 13 vs HP Spectre Folio 13, we recommend:

Although we recommend HP Spectre Folio 13, if you are tight on budget, HP ENVY 13 offer an excellent bargain:

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