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Laptops

HP steps up the design on its premium Envy lineup

They're pretty on the inside, too, with new AMD Ryzen and Radeon Vega processors joining eighth-gen Intel and Nvidia chips.

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Sarah Tew/CNET

In between HP's cutting-edge Spectre PC line and the mainstream Pavilion line are its Envy PCs, which have an air of luxury while still being reasonably priced. If you're a fan of thin all-metal designs, higher quality components and extra features, you'll want to check out the Envys.

For 2018, HP has slimmed the bezels around the screens on the Envy laptops and two-in-one x360 models. When you open one up, you're basically looking at nothing but screen. They also all have audio tuned by Bang & Olufsen, support for Gigabit Wi-Fi speeds and new HP Command Center software, which lets you easily prioritize performance, fan noise and system temperatures depending on your needs.

HP is bringing its Sure View technology to the line, too. The feature, which first appeared in its Spectre line, makes your display nearly unreadable to anyone off-angle, giving you some privacy at the push of a button. Side-mounted fingerprint readers and IR cameras for facial recognition will be options as well.

Now Playing: Watch this: HP polishes up its Envy laptops for spring 2018
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The Envy laptops come in 13.3- and 17.3-inch sizes with full-HD resolution displays. They have lift-up hinges that angle the keyboard up at the back for a more comfortable typing angle (and it looks cool, too). HP made a drop-jaw USB port for the 13-inch model to make it as thin as possible while still keeping the larger USB-A port.

The Envy 13 will be available in May starting at $1,000 (roughly converted, that's about £740 or AU$1,320). It features an eighth-gen Intel Core i7 processor, PCIe NVMe SSDs and integrated graphics. The Envy 17 starts at $1,050 and adds options for Intel Optane memory and discrete Nvidia GeForce MX150 graphics, which has proved to be a good GPU for faster video and photo editing and playing current games at low to medium graphics settings.

Speaking of graphics, the new Envy x360 13 will be the first to have an AMD Ryzen 5 or 7 processor paired with Radeon Vega 8 or RX Vega 10 graphics, helping boost your productivity with this little two-in-one. It arrives in May starting at $700. If you'd prefer more screen real estate, there will be a 15.6-inch Envy x360 15 with the same hardware options starting at $750. Intel versions with current Core i5 or i7 processors will be available starting at $870.

HP also updated its Envy Curved AiO desktop with a new 34-inch model, which HP says is the world's widest all-in-one PC and the first with Amazon Alexa integration. HP punched up the design by adding a dark ash wood-grain finish to the back and base of the PC. The finish gives it more of a furniture look than the typical silver and black chassis of other all-in-ones.

A row of Bang & Olufsen-tuned speakers line the front and they're angled up 45 degrees so they hit your ears -- not your chest. Volume is controlled by a touch scroll wheel in the base, where there is also a high-speed wireless charger. A pop-up webcam sits in the top of the display for that extra sense of privacy when not in use.

Pricing, availability and exact specs aren't available for the 34-inch version, but a Curved AiO 27-inch model will start at $1,400 and features an eighth-generation Intel Core i7-8700T processor, 16GB of memory and an Nvidia GeForce GTX 1050 graphics card.

Where to Buy

HP Envy x360 13

Visit manufacturer site for details.

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