Owner's Lounge: Spectre x360 - 15-df0068nr (Late 2018) - 8565U cpu, MX150 gpu

Discussion in 'HP' started by nosauce, Nov 2, 2018.

  1. nosauce

    nosauce Notebook Consultant

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    This lounge is for the HP Spectre 15 inch "df" line released late Oct, 2018. More specifically, I'm hoping this thread would be mainly for the less powerful versions that comes with an i7-8565U Whiskey Lake processor and an Nvidia MX150 gpu.
    Please note, also part of the df line, are the more powerful versions of this laptop with an i7-8750H Coffee Lake processor and Nvidia 1050Ti gpu. I'm sure there will be overlap with both versions when it comes to drivers and troubleshooting issues.
    * skip to the 2nd post for a look at the laptop

    I got mine from HP.com but similar variations will be released with slightly different model numbers (I'm guessing 15-df00XXxx). I read that Best Buy will have this line by Dec, 2018.

    Drivers and Support material
    - support page for generic df0000 Spectre x360 15" models (big thanks to @KLF)
    - model# df0068nr support page - search for your version here

    - Service and maintenance guide

    - HP support specifically for the Spectre line:
    888-817-4633 Mon-Fri 8am to Midnight EST, Sat and Sun 9am to 9pm EST

    Opening up the unit (taking off the bottom cover):
    pg.30-31
    of service manual - You need to peel off both the front and back rubber stoppers for this. Note: There's a thin, black, opaque tape between the rubber stoppers and the cover. This should be peeled off WITH the rubber stopper but the tape is more adherent to the back cover. Start peeling off the stopper and if you see white colored adhesive you didn't get the black tape. Stop peeling and look closely. I used tweezers with needle like pointers to pick it off. Then peel them off together. If it's clear, shiny and black you got the tape. If ended up peeling off the whole rubber stopper without the tape then you'll see white adhesive material on the stopper. It's okay. Peel off the black tape still on the laptop to reach the screws. They're there.
    Make sure you removed all 8 screws. Start prying from the front and then both sides. Work your way to the back. There will be a lot of resistance when you get close to the hinges. This is because there's a row of plastic teeth in the middle of the cover that you can't see that's latching onto the base of the laptop. Keep in mind that the cover is made out of metal. It won't break. Gently open up the cover with increasing strength until you hear something snap. That's the sound of one of the plastic teeth breaking off (at least this is what happened with both of my units). If you took the cover off without breaking this tooth, you're the man! Good luck.

    Re-pasting the Thermal Interface Material:
    pg.60 bottom figure
    (for 8565U models) You only need to remove the 3x2 = 6 screws to remove the two heatsinks. These screws are adjacent to the CPU and GPU. You do not need to remove any additional screws holding down the fans or battery.

    Compatible SSD: [pg.35]
    - I was able to successfully install the Samsung 2TB 970 EVO

    Compatible RAM: [manual pg.33-34, When taking off the metal cover note the small gap in the middle on the side closest to the front of the laptop. Stick a small probe in the gap and gently lift. It's going to be more difficult to put the cover back on the teeth (labelled by the dotted lines).]

    - My laptop came with 2x8GB 2666MHz Samsung M471A1K43CB1-CTD RAM modules, and ran properly at 2666MHz. This was a pleasant surprise as the specification on the website reads, "16 GB DDR4-2400 SDRAM (2 x 8 GB)", i.e. 2400MHz speed. The cpu in this laptop -- i7-8565U Whiskey Lake -- also advertises max support of up to 32GiB, 2400 RAM. But it's running at 2666 right out of the box.I don't think there's any overclocking or XMP going on.

    - Corsair Vengeance 2x16GB DDR4 2666 (PC4 21300) 18-19-19-39 latency: CMSX32GX4M2A2666C18
    This is the RAM from my old computer and it seems to work fine on this computer (easy install, simple plug and play).

    Please let me know if you got other RAM modules to work. I'm curious if higher RAM speeds or other 2666 RAM with lower timings/latency are compatible. I'd also like to know if 2x32 = 64GB is possible (for the 8565U version; 64GB is possible for 8750H version).
     
    Last edited: Nov 15, 2018 at 7:01 PM
  2. nosauce

    nosauce Notebook Consultant

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    HP Spectre x360 15 inch (late 2018) - First Look

    corresponding Windows Central article

    *NOTE - The reviewer keeps mixing up the two versions of this laptop which is misleading. Just to clarify, there are 2 versions of this laptop:

    Version 1 (less powerful, more battery efficient (hopefully)):
    CPU: i7-8565U (4 core, Whiskey Lake)
    GPU: NVIDIA GeForce MX150 (2 gigs of VRAM)

    Version 2
    (more powerful, less battery efficient):
    CPU: i7-8750H (6 core, Coffee Lake)
    GPU: NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 Ti (Max-Q) (4 gigs of VRAM)

    You can't mix and match the CPU's with either GPU's. It'd be great if I was wrong because I'd love to have the 8565U with the 1050Ti graphics card. But I can't. This option is not available. Yet this is exactly what the article lists as the specs for this laptop in the article, which is very misleading. Please, let me know if this option exists! I'll proceed to returning this laptop for the 6th time in 4 months.
     
    Last edited: Nov 16, 2018 at 2:48 AM
  3. KLF

    KLF NBR Super Modernator Super Moderator

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  4. nosauce

    nosauce Notebook Consultant

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    THANK YOU!
    I have no idea why the Spectre service people couldn't provide me with these links when I asked specifically for the drivers and the service manual. This would have helped a lot when I was opening up the computer for re-paste, and RAM and SSD upgrades.

    I've never used bitlocker. I might try it out, but it seems like it hampers performance.
     
  5. nosauce

    nosauce Notebook Consultant

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    I didn't like the monitor of my unit so I returned it (looks like bleeding). Hopefully the new one they send me is better. The bleeding was most noticeable on the blue Windows setup screen. The side edges were noticeably brighter/lighter and the very tip of the bottom corners were darker. My old computer (Dell XPS 15 9550) is not as bad. The max brightness of the new Spectre is definitely better than the 9550 which is good because I often felt like my screen wasn't bright enough when I was using it during the day.
     
  6. hamedcom

    hamedcom Newbie

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    Can i ask you more info about this product , since i am planing to buy this device :
    HP Spectre x360 - 15-df0797nz (i7-8750H,FHD Sure View for Privacy , 16 GB , 512 GB)

    - What about build quality is it solid like Macbook ?
    - If you return back and you need select device from this device what you will select :Spectre x360 Late 2018 or XPS 9570
    - About the battery how long while use the device from full charge
    - Can you upload picture for device beside the XPS to compare

    Sorry agin for the long list .
    Thanks
     
  7. KLF

    KLF NBR Super Modernator Super Moderator

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    There is no dates on those pages. It is possible the service manual was not yet available by the time you asked for it.

    Some performance loss is a trade between someone unauthorized accessing your computer/files or not. I have it on my work computer, of course, and also on my personal laptop (Elitebook 840 G2) that I usually carry around. I don't use bitlocker on every machine I have. On a computer with TPM Bitlocker is a breeze to enable and use, since the password is recorded in the tpm chip.
     
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  8. nosauce

    nosauce Notebook Consultant

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    The HP Spectre model that you're looking to buy is fundamentally different from the one that I have in a couple ways:
    1. 15-df0797nz has a more powerful cpu/gpu: Mine has the 8565U cpu and MX150 gpu. Your version has the 8750H cpu and 1050 Ti gpu. Your version is more powerful / faster, better graphics. But it also uses more power/battery. The 8750H is 45w and has 6 cores. The 8565U is 15w and has 4 cores. So the 8750H laptop will use more power, be hotter, the fans will be running more (more noise), and you'll get thermal throttling for sure, meaning that the processor will not run as fast as it should. I'm hoping the cooling will be less of an issue for the 8565U (but I'll probably get throttling too). These laptops are very small/compact and it seems like thermals are always an issue. They redesigned the new Spectre's so we'll see how efficient the cooling is.
    2. 15-df0797nz has lower resolution display: I have the UHD display (3840x2160) and the one you're looking at is FHD (1920x1080). All things being equal, the FHD version will get significantly more battery life. My eyes have gotten too used to the UHD display so I can't get the FHD anymore. I've also noticed that, in general, the UHD display versions of laptops have better sRGB coverage. I'm not sure about the contrast ratio, brightness, color representation, etc; but the bottom line is, my eyes like the UHD displays for sure.
    There's obviously a lot of variables when it comes to battery life depending on what you're doing on the laptop. I browse the web, use office (word, excel, powerpoint), watch some videos... I don't play any games, don't do video editing, compile code, etc. My XPS 9550 gets about 4 hours of battery life (78Wh battery). For the previous generation Spectre (8550U) I got about 6 hours. I haven't used my new Spectre (8565U) so I can't tell you right now how much battery life it gets. I'm guessing about 6 hours. If I can get 7 hours I'd be very happy. I'll be ecstatic if I can get 8hrs!

    The laptop you're looking into (15-df0797nz) will have a different battery life. The two differences I pointed out above work in different directions when it comes to battery life. The FHD screen will give you a lot more battery life, but the more powerful cpu/gpu will reduce battery life. If I were to get a FHD screen (8565U with FHD), I'll probably get more than 8hrs of battery life, but like I said, I need the 4K UHD display. I have no sense of how much the more powerful cpu/gpu will affect battery life. With FHD and 8750H (15-df0797nz) maybe you'll get 7 hrs?

    If battery life is really important to you and you want a 15" laptop, you might want to look into the MacBooks or the 15" Surface Book 2. For whatever reason the Mac Books get a lot of battery life and the Surface Book 2 get's an insane amount of battery life. Both laptops price at a premium though; they're expensive. Otherwise you might want to look into 13" laptop for more battery life. HP claims that the new HP Spectre 13" has the longest battery life in it's class, 22hrs+. Which probably means you'll get like 10hrs??? Again, I'm guessing here. I need a 15", I can't get a Mac, and I can't get the Surface Book 2 (no TB3).
    I was pretty impressed with the build quality of my new Spectre. Pretty solid. The screen is not flimsy or wobbly. The hinges are pretty solid when I move the screen 360 degrees (tablet mode) everything feels pretty solid. But the build quality on the XPS and MacBook is better. I like the aluminum casing on the XPS and I like carbon fiber where your hands rest. This is all plastic on the Spectre. But the Spectre is still very solid. [EDIT: @silverwolf0 points out that "this is a metal laptop. It's just the density and painted finish are different compared to more premium builds."] I really like the new look on the new Spectre. It's sexy. I really like the new silver on Poseidon Blue colorway. It's a lot better than the rose gold on Dark Ash Silver in my opinion. The facaded corners (where the power button and TB3 are) makes the laptop look a lot sleeker. It's a sexy laptop.
    You need to realize that I'm getting the Spectre mainly for the 8565U processor. I don't do anything that's too CPU intensive and I really want more battery life. There aren't that many 15" laptops with 15w processors and I like the Spectre the best. But it seems like you're going for the 8750H processor. If I was getting a laptop with the 8750H processor, I'd get the one with the longer battery life (given it gets more than 1hr more). The XPS comes with 97Wh battery vs the Spectre's 84Wh. If the Spectre x360 8750H and XPS 9570 has the same battery life, I'd get the XPS 9570, mainly for the better display. Also because I never video chat and I don't think I'll use the tablet mode on the Spectre at all.

    - Do you video chat a lot? The Spectre is better for this. The XPS has the camera on bottom (looking up your nose) and shoots in 720p. The Spectre has the camera on top and shoots in FHD. I think this means you can use Windows Hello to unlock your computer. But all the newer phones these days have a better front facing camera than either of these laptops.

    - Will you be using the pen a lot? I don't think the FHD version of the XPS 9570 supports the pen function. The UHD version does support pen. The Spectre and the XPS use different technology for the pen so you may want to look into that. And of course the XPS doesn't swivel 360 degrees to be used in tablet mode.

    - Do you use a lot of Bluetooth 5 devices? The Spectre comes with BT5.0 but the XPS has BT4.2, but you can upgrade the WiFi card on your own for the XPS. I can definitely use more range for my bluetooth devices.
    I returned my Spectre for a new one so I don't have it on me at the moment.
     
    Last edited: Nov 11, 2018 at 2:09 AM
  9. hamedcom

    hamedcom Newbie

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    Thank you very much for you help i give me lot of information which will help to select.
     
  10. silverwolf0

    silverwolf0 Notebook Evangelist

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    I had the earlier 2018 spectre x360 15 with 8550u and mx150, which had no numpad and awful side speakers. Then they added the numpad and speakers on top for the intel-amd version. Now they have changed the design yet again with hexagonal cuts. And it's still 2018.

    I want to know if the screen has improved at all since the early 2018 model I owned. It was way too reflective with poor contrast. Wasn't all that colorful either. Speakers were abysmal. I know the speakers have improved since then, but by how much?

    Also, this is a metal laptop. It's just the density and painted finish are different compared to more premium builds.
     
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