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HP Elite Dragonfly Review: The Out of Office Business Laptop

HP Elite Dragonfly Review: The Out of Office Business Laptop

“Lightweight and stylish, the HP Elite Dragonfly is almost too sleek to be considered purely a business laptop.”

  • Perfect dimension for touring
  • Lots of safety features
  • Incredible battery life
  • Great port choice
  • Older processors
  • Keyboard feels cramped

This evaluate was up to date by Digital Trends author Mark Coppock on May 6, 2020, with new Tile and Sure View Reflect options.

You hop in your six-hour flight with the formidable objective of getting some work accomplished. You’re ready. You have a laptop computer. A charger. You’re even keen to pay for the costly in-flight Wi-Fi. It’s time to Get. Work. Done.

Six hours later, you’ve barely managed to open your laptop computer.

Between fussing with the charger beneath your seat, preventing for elbow room together with your fellow passengers, and making an attempt to cram a laptop computer on an airplane tray, it’s not simple. And in the event you’re packing a clunky “business laptop,” properly, it’s close to unimaginable.

HP thinks its new Elite Dragonfly is the answer. The firm claims it has the safety features enterprise individuals wantwith out the stereotypical design issues. So, is that this $2,079 enterprise laptop computer worthy of first-class journey?

becoming journey companion

The Dragonfly is designed from the ground-up for taking your work on the go. At 2.2 kilos, it’s considerably lighter than laptops like the XPS 13HP Spectre x360, and MacBook AirHP says it lower weight from each component of the laptop computer to make it this mild with out dropping structural integrity. Even a super-light enterprise laptop computer just like the ThinkPad X1 Yoga is a full 0.eight kilos heavier. 

That effort actually paid off. Pack it in your backpack or briefcase and also you’ll hardly discover the additional weight as you race by means of the airport searching for your gate. It’s a tiny laptop computer. Yet its daring navy colorway, touches of gold trim, and sharp edges really feel made to match your fitted swimsuit and wristwatch. It’s downright decadent.

Holding it one-handed as a pill continues to be out of the query as a result of dimension.

When you’re taking your seat and whip out the Dragonfly to do work, it’ll match properly in your tray desk. Its general footprint is kind of small, so it’d even work in financial system class. This is one other space the Dragonfly has over its rivals. It matches the XPS 13 in dimensionhowever it’s three quarter of an inch smaller than the X1 Yoga in top and width. When you’re in a decent house like a aircrafteach millimeter counts. 

For a greater view, you possibly can flip the keyboard round for note-taking or movie-watching. Tablet use is feasible however, like different 2-in-1 units of this dimension, uncomfortable. It’s only a bit too giant and a bit too heavy.

Sitting subsequent to the XPS 13 2-in-1, the Dragonfly’s display screen does look a bit dated. The bezels aren’t hugehowever they’re a bit of chunky subsequent to the bigger 16:10 display screen of the XPS 13 2-in-1. The new Spectre x360 has smaller bezels, too, and I want they’d made their method over to the Dragonfly. The 1080p display screen isn’t as spectacular because the high-contrast, insanely brilliant XPS 13 2-in-1, both. A 4K model shall be provided for higher picture high qualityhowever it’s not at present obtainable.

We additionally examined HP’s newest privateness display screen, Sure View Reflect. It’s the 4th era of the corporate’s expertise that renders the display screen unviewable from an angle — which means no person however you possibly can see your show until they’re standing straight behind you. In “sharing” mode, that’s, with Sure View Reflect turned off, the show may be very brilliant and has tons of distinctionin addition to correct coloration width and accuracy. It’s a very good show for productiveness customers. When in privateness mode, with Sure View Reflect turned on, brightness, distinctionand colours drop off however it works as meant — a copper “coating” is utilized to the show, making it illegible from the edges.

A small laptop computer means a small keyboard

The dimension of the bezels (and dimension of the keyboard deck) permits for a large-enough touchpad for monitoring and gestures. The glass is clean, and the clicking mechanism is quiet. 

The small footprint, although, does have a compromise in keyboard width. It’s a bit cramped, particularly on the operate row, which options itty-bitty keys which are simple to by accident press. HP took it a step additional by making an attempt so as to add a pair of upward-facing audio system proper on the keyboard deck.

I’d usually applaud such a alternativehowever on this case, I might have most well-liked a bigger keyboard just like the one on the X1 Yoga. That’s very true because the audio system right here nonetheless don’t sound nice.

Fortunately, the typing expertise is fulfilling. The keypresses have sufficient journey, (particularly in comparison with the XPS 13 2-in-1 or MacBook Pro), and are quiet sufficient to not get up the particular person sleeping subsequent to you on the aircraft.

The stylus, which comes bundled within the field, is a light-weight pen that feels nice within the hand and recharges over USB-C. With 4,096 ranges of sensitivity, it’s excellent for note-taking and illustrating. The solely drawback is it doesn’t include a case or any technique to connect it to the laptop computer. You’ll need to rely by yourself units to maintain the pen on you, and in the event you’re on the streetthat may be troublesome.

Port-ready, all-day work, and built-in Tile help

When you arrive at your vacation spot, the Dragonfly has loads of tips up its sleeve to maintain your computing wants met. Port choice is an efficient place to begin. Despite being simply 0.63 inches thick, HP has included each a USB-A and full-size HDMI port. Both aren’t frequent in laptops this skinny, with laptops just like the XPS 13 going all-in on USB-C. 

The Dragonfly incorporates a USB-C 3.1 and Thunderbolt Three port on your fashionable equipment and connections as properlyhowever then offers you choices for these legacy ports that also come in useful. They’re key for these moments while you present up at a gathering, frazzled by a day of journey, and must plug right into a TV or monitor by means of HDMI. It additionally means you possibly can depart (most) of your dongles at residence.

However, the HP Elite Dragonfly is barely behind Lenovo’s X1 Yoga. That laptop computer affords two USB-C 3.1/Thunderbolt Three and two USB-A 3.1, together with HDMI 1.4.

If it’s a brief journey (otherwise you’re feeling gutsy), you may dare to go away your charger at residence, too. The Dragonfly’s battery life is that good. It lasted slightly below 10 and a half hours in mild internet shoppingwhich means you’ll get properly over a full day of labor. Your coast-to-coast flight is roofedwhether or not you’re working or catching up on The Mandalorian. The Sure View Reflect show doesn’t damage battery life, both.

I used to be a bit of aggravated by the ability button, which is positioned proper subsequent to the ports on the left aspect. It results in numerous unintended presses when selecting up the laptop computeror just shifting it. It does make sense when the 2-in-1 is used as a pill however, as talked about, the Dragonfly’s dimension means pill use isn’t perfect.

In 2020, HP added built-in Tile helpwhich implies customers can now find their laptop computer utilizing the Tile app. The Tile circuitry is built-in, particularly sliding into the M.2 slot normally used for the optionally available LTE help — meaning it’s Tile or LTE however not each. Tile works properly, even when the laptop computer is turned off — you possibly can at the least see the place you final related to the laptop computer by way of Bluetooth, and in the event you’re fortunatesomebody with the Tile app shall be in vary and you’ll see the laptop computer’s location in actual time. It’s an amazing function for anybody who’s fearful about leaving their laptop computer behind.

When enterprise options are a trouble

HP is happy with the safety features it’s stuffed into the Dragonfly. It has a fingerprint scanner, Windows Hello facial recognition, a bodily digicam cowl, suppressed noise cancellation for Skype calls, prolonged Wi-Fi vary, and three microphones (two front-facing, one “world”-facing). These are all touches that enterprise customers will admire.

It goes deeper, although. HP Sure Start can be included for a secured boot-up and BIOS safety. HP even sells a separate mannequin with its Sure View darkened display screen for privateness whereas touring.

This isn’t simply software program. HP’s personal endpoint safety controller is positioned on the board itself. HP says it’s remoted and cryptographically safe. There’s extra right here than even on a business-first laptop computer just like the ThinkPad X1 laptops.

We all need our computer systems to be protectedhowever that’s possible greater than what the common particular person wants. Some the safety suite looks like bloatware, particularly in the event you’re eager on utilizing third-party software program for malware safety. HP’s safety will make IT managers gladnonetheless, and that’s what the corporate is banking on.

Performance is…okay. The use of Intel’s Eighth-gen processors is unlucky. It’s not HP’s fault, after all. Intel doesn’t help vPro in its latest generations of processors but, which is (amongst different issues) an necessary device for IT departments and distant administration.

It’s the identical hang-up you’ll discover in different enterprise laptops like Dell’s Latitude collection or the ThinkPad T-series. Note that the less expensive, $1,629 Intel Core i5 Dragonfly doesn’t have vPro, so that you lose the efficiency bump from newer processors with none of the advantages.

HP determined to play it protected with the Dragonfly. You possible received’t discover a drop in efficiency in comparison with the XPS 13 2-in-1 or Spectre x360, particularly not with the Dragonfly’s 16GB of RAM, 512GB SSD, and 32GB Intel Optane Memory H10. It hurts the longevity of the laptop computeralthoughand can make you query the excessive price-tag.

Our take

The Dragonfly is a good match for an on-the-go enterprise one that cares about safety, portability, and construct high quality. The Dragonfly will make that particular person gladparticularly if their employer is footing the invoice.

If you’re anybody else, you’ll be questioning why the laptop computer is so small, doesn’t activate shortly, or doesn’t have the latest-generation processors. Despite its try and impress a broader viewers, the Dragonfly’s function set means it’s nonetheless finest for a really particular person.

Are there are any options?

The closest various is the ThinkPad X1 Yoga, which is a couple of hundred {dollars} cheaper. The Yoga additionally contains choices for a wider vary of configurations, together with 4K panels and 10th-gen processors. It’s not as transportable because the Dragonfly, although.

The Dell Latitude 7400 2-in-1 can be a very good various with its ultra-thin bezels and plethora of safety features. For an analogous configuration, the Latitude is $100 costlier and isn’t fairly as small because the Dragonfly.

Non-business choices just like the HP Spectre x360 or XPS 13 2-in-1 are implausiblealthough you’ll be lacking numerous the safety features you may want.

How lengthy will it final?

The Dragonfly comes with a superb three-year guarantee, which shall be enticing to companies. Barring any accidents, the laptop computer ought to final you that lengthy given its {hardware} and glorious construct high quality. You may even add on an extra HP CarePack for prolonged restore and substitute providers.

Should you purchase it?

Yes. Those outdoors the enterprise world shouldn’t cross over, however for the appropriate particular person, the Dragonfly is the proper journey companion.

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