HP Pavilion x2 12-b020nr Detachable Laptop Review

July 27, 2016
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A detachable laptop like HP Pavilion x2 12-b020nr has many uses. It works as a normal laptop but not only that: the display part can be removed from the keyboard, and then the screen becomes a standalone tablet. Useful, isn’t it, but is this thing really a good buy or not..?

The good

There is nothing wrong with using HP Pavilion x2 12-b020nr for non-demanding activities like surfing the world wide web or writing emails or light multimedia such as YouTube. The processor is Intel Core m3-6Y30, a dual-core chip with low 0.9Ghz clock speed which luckily increases to 2.2Ghz with the built-in turbo boost (CPU Mark score around 3000). The RAM is basic 4GB, keep in mind it’s integrated on-board so upgrading the memory won’t work.

A plus point must be given for the solid-state drive. It’s a 128GB M.2 unit, much faster than a regular hard drive. Also Windows 10 Home (the OS here) will boot up quickly in a matter of seconds.

Of course the touch display is good, at least it has many functions! It’s very small with 12 inches diagonal but offers the crystal-clear 1920×1080 maximum resolution. That’s great for watching videos. The display will detach from the keyboard part, essentially turning the machine into a tablet. Also the screen’s panel type is IPS which means viewing angles are going to be around 180 degrees. HD webcam is planted on the top screen bezel.

The bad

HP Pavilion x2 12-b020nr is bad for serious gaming. The reason you might already know: Intel HD 515, a slow(ish) integrated graphics chip. For games with fancier graphics it’s sub-par: GTA 5, for example, requires low settings and 720p resolution to run at ~30 frames per second. Fallout 4 would probably run even worse than that. Counter-Strike: Go will get playable frame rates on high settings, the same goes for types like Minecraft and League of Legends.

Keep in mind that because the display part has to work as a standalone unit, it also means that all the components are installed there (not in the keyboard part). So the unit can feel a bit top-heavy to use.

Other interesting things you should know

HP Pavilion x2 12-b020nr has average battery life. It’s around 6 hours for web surfing on a dimmed screen, often these small notebooks get more. The battery is an integrated 2-cell 33Whr unit.

The notebook has a minimum set of connections: one USB 3.1 Type-C (can be used with many standards!), one normal USB 2.0 and one micro-HDMI (for connecting a monitor). Networking is WiFi-only – 802.11ac + Bluetooth – unless you get USB to RJ-45 adapter for a networking cable.

There is no DVD burner installed (however nothing is stopping you from buying an external one). Micro SD card reader is present.

The keyboard is not backlit.


HP Pavilion x2 12-b020nr is not so much a powerful laptop as it is a notebook of many functions. The Core M processor offers enough beef for day-to-day activities, such as browsing the web. The solid-state drive is a nice addition as it doesn’t break so easily compared to hard drives. The display also works as a tablet when you decide so. This laptop is actually quite good, it won’t be disaster for anything, but keep an eye on gaming performance. If indeed many functions is what you want, I recommend checking out this HP!

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