The Dell latitude 7400 Review If you’ve been wondering about whether a long-life Qualcomm Snapdragon PC is for you, Dell would like a word.
Dell’s new 14-inch Dell Latitude 7400 2-in-1 achieves a simply incredible 18 hours of battery life using a powerful Intel 8th-gen Whiskey Lake processor.
It also offers a full complement of ports and a slightly gimmicky feature called ExpressSign-in (yes, it’s really spelled that way).
As our review shows, Dell has designed a stylish business notebook optimized for life on the road.
It’s also optimized for IT rather than personal budgets, as our review unit clocked in at a whopping $2,800.
But if you want a business laptop with all-day battery life and performance, the Dell Latitude 7400 2-in-1 delivers it.
Lets start our review with Dell latitude 7400 2-in-1 with the basic specs.
Dell Latitude 7400 2-in-1 specs
- Display: 14-inch (1080p) touch
- Processor: Intel 1.9GHz Core i7-8665U vPro (Whiskey Lake)
- Graphics: Intel UHD 620
- Memory: 8GB-16GB LPDDR3 (16GB as tested)
- Storage: 128GB-2TB NVMe class 40 SSD (512GB as tested)
- Ports: Two USB 3.1 Gen 2 Type-C (Thunderbolt 3, Power Delivery/DisplayPort); Two USB 3.1 Gen 1 Type-A; HDMI 1.4; microSD; optional microSIM WWAN
- Camera: 720p HD Camera (user-facing); Windows Hello capable
- Battery: 52Wh, 78Wh (78Wh as tested)
- Wireless: 802.11ac (2×2); Bluetooth
- Operating system: Windows 10 Pro
- Dimensions: 12.59 x 7.87 x 0.59 inches
- Weight: 3.30 pounds, 4.08 pounds with charger (measured)
- Color: Aluminum
- Options: Fingerprint sensor inside power button; contact smartcard reader
Built, looks and fell of dell latitude 7400 2-in-1
The Dell Latitude 7400 2-in-1 is a premium business laptop, which is very evident from the moment you take it out of its box.
It doesn’t have a very large footprint, so it’s easy to carry around, and the weight of about 1.36kg means it’s not too heavy either.
Most of the body and lid are made from machined aluminium, which feels very premium and well put-together. The edges and corners are rounded too, so it’s not uncomfortable in the hand.
Dell has gone with a drop hinge design, which keeps the bottom of the display close to the surface of the lower half and hides a bit of the bottom bezel.
This, coupled with the slim bezels on the other three sides, give the appearance of a larger screen.
The 14-inch full-HD (1920×1080) display has a 16:9 aspect ratio and a maximum brightness of 300nits.
It’s also touch-enabled, since this is a convertible laptop, and there’s Gorilla Glass 5 to protect it against scratches.
The hinge allows the display to rotate all the way back, so this laptop can be used as a tablet.
There’s support for Dell’s Active Pen too, which is a Rs. 6,500 (plus GST) optional accessory.
The lid offers excellent reinforcement for the display with little to no flex and absolutely no pixel warping, even when we applied pressure. The base of the Latitude 7400 2-in-1 is quite slim and houses all the ports.
You get two USB 3.1 Gen1 Type-A ports, one on either side of the laptop; two Type-C Thunderbolt 3 ports on the left which can be used to charge the laptop; a full-sized HDMI 1.4 port;
a microSD card slot; a Micro-SIM tray for LTE connectivity; a Noble Wedge lock slot; SmartCard reader; and a headphone/microphone combo port.
We would have preferred a full-sized SD card slot here instead of a microSD one. There’s also no Ethernet port, which is worth noting for a commercial laptop.
The keyboard area is a bit sunken so the keys are at the same level as the palm rest area.
This prevents the keys from making a lot of contact with other surfaces when you’re using the laptop in tent or tablet mode.
The keys themselves are a little smaller than usual, which took some getting used to. However, the travel is good and they aren’t noisy even with vigorous typing.
The power button is located separately on the right and on our review unit, it had an integrated fingerprint sensor, which is an optional feature.
The glass trackpad is large and works very well, thanks to Microsoft’s Precision drivers.
The Dell Latitude 7400 2-in-1 has cutouts on the bottom for airflow, along with two separate ones for the stereo speakers.
The base is held together by standard Philips screws placed around its periphery, so it shouldn’t be too hard to access the internals.
Our test unit came with a 65W USB Type-C charging brick. The adapter is quite compact so it’s not a big problem to carry around.
Display of Dell latitude 7400 2-in-1
There is a frustratingly long list of displays to choose from when configuring the Latitude 7400. Dell sent us the 14-inch, 1080p non touch Dynamic Privacy display, which has a built-in privacy filter.
I’ll talk about the privacy filter in more depth below. For now, let’s focus on display quality.
Overall, the 14-inch, 1080p screen is fairly bright and colorful, certainly good enough for any business users and even for consuming content (when you’re on a break, of course).
Neon lights cast a relaxing blue tone around Will Smith and Martin Lawrence in the trailer for Bad Boys for Life.
One scene later, an explosion erupted in vivid orange hues, spewing blinding light across a dark parking garage.
The panel is sharp enough that I could see the “Miami Detective” inscription on Lawrence’s badge when he flashed it at random pedestrians.
My only problem with the display is that the quality degrades when you view the display at even the slightest angle even when the privacy screen is disabled.
Shadows form on the top and bottom of the screen when the lid is tilted away from your eyes.
Similarly, the left and right sides of the screen go dark when you’re viewing it from the side.
Viewing angles are worse when the built-in privacy filter is doing its job, but they’re still bad, even when the feature is turned off.
According to our colorimeter, the Latitude 7400‘s display covers 111% of the sRGB color gamut, which makes it more colorful than the display on the ThinkPad X1 Carbon (109%) but not quite as vivid as the EliteBook 840 G5’s privacy panel (119%) or the Latitude 7400 2-in-1’s screen (113%) and the category average (124%).
With a peak brightness of 342 nits, the Latitude 7400’s panel outshines the displays on the EliteBook 840 G5 (217 nits), the dell Latitude 7400 2-in-1 (280 nits) and the ThinkPad X1 Carbon (336 nits). The category average (358 nits) is just a tad brighter than those panels.
Keyboard on the Dell Latitude 7400 2-in-1
The keyboard on dell latitude 7400 2-in-1 provides a solid typing experience.
Like many people, my day-to-day work is performed upon a laptop keyboard, where I prefer comfortably spacious keys and medium key travel.
While the dell Latitude 7400’s keys are a bit small for my taste, I found the laptop’s keys pleasingly springy.
Dell’s keyboard layout is pretty standard, using the conventional “cross” of arrow keys in the lower right-hand corner, with the Print Screen, Home, End, Insert and Delete keys left for the function keys in the upper row.
Of note is a key to disable the mic a personal concern of mine with a small LED to alert you when that particular function is active.
Each key is backlit, with a two-step gradation: on, brighter, and off. The Dell Latitude 7400’s precision touchpad is a bit small because of the compact chassis.
Clickable throughout all but a fingerbreadth at the top of the trackpad, it proved both smooth and comfortable to use. I performed a number of two, three, and four-finger gestures easily.
As you can see in the spec list above, the Dell Latitude 7400 2-in-1 ships with a generous selection of ports.
Though our review unit didn’t include either, the Dell Latitude 7400 can be configured with a fingerprint reader embedded in the power button, as well as a smartcard contact reader within the chassis.
Instead, the webcam doubles as a Windows Hello biometric login, and includes infrared sensing.
There’s no privacy shutter, however, though many competing notebooks now include this feature.
Dell Latitude 7400 performance
Equipped with a Core i7-8665U CPU with vPro and 16GB of RAM, the Latitude 7400 powered through my real-world performance gauntlet without a hitch.
I loaded 15 Google Chrome pages and played two 1080p YouTube videos without noticing any lag.
There weren’t any delays when I streamed Outside the Lines on ESPN while two Twitch and one Mixer stream ran in the background.
With a score of 15,865 on the Geekbench 4.1 overall performance test, the Dell Latitude 7400 outpunched the EliteBook 840 G5 (14,178, Core i7-8650U) and the category average (15,724).
but it got bullied by its sibling, the Dell Latitude 7400 2-in-1 (16,123, Core i7-8665U) and the ThinkPad X1 Carbon (16,545, Core i7-8665U).
Equipped with a Core i7-8665U CPU with vPro and 16GB of RAM, the Dell Latitude 7400 powered through my real-world performance gauntlet without a hitch.
Our video-transfer test proved tricky for the Latitude 7400, which needed 19 minutes and 27 seconds to convert a 4K video to 1080p resolution.
The dell Latitude 7400’s 1TB M.2 PCIe NVMe Class 40 SSD is quick. It took just 7 seconds to duplicate 4.97GB of multimedia files, which comes out to a transfer rate of 727 megabytes per second.
The storage in the EliteBook 840 G5 (509 MBps, 512GB M.2 PCIe NVMe) and the ThinkPad X1 Carbon (508.9, 512GB M.2 PCIe NVMe SSD) isn’t as fast, but the Dell Latitude 7400 2-in-1 (848 MBps, 512GB M.2 PCIe NVMe Class 40 SSD) outpaced the competition.
ExpressSign in on Dell latitude 7400 2-in-1 a gimmick?
Dell touts the dell Latitude 7400 2-in-1 as “the only PC that senses your presence,” with a technology the company calls ExpressSign-in.
If configured with Windows Hello, ExpressSign-in will lock your PC automatically when you walk away.
But it will also detect you when you approach, then use Windows Hello to log you in.
The technology uses a sensor package to determine when there’s no one nearby, then automatically locks your PC.
Windows already does something somewhat similar (if enabled via Windows settings): If you pair a phone via Bluetooth, Windows can lock you out automatically once your phone goes out of range.
However, Bluetooth’s range can be long enough that Dynamic Lock doesn’t activate until you’re farther away.
ExpressSign-in isn’t that much better. It automatically turns off your PC within three minutes if it can’t detect anyone in range.
(In testing, it took 1 minute, 3 seconds in an empty office.) If someone wanders by and triggers the sensors before then poof! your PC is back on, unlocked.
Manually locking your PC is more effective, though you can always forget.
ExpressSign-in complementary “wake on approach” technology is somewhat gimmicky:
As you (or anyone else) nears, sensors detect your approach and ready Windows Hello for immediate login.
(Otherwise, you’d have to tap the spacebar or power button, like a savage.)
I love Windows Hello, but ExpressSign-in is the PC’s equivalent of waving your foot under an SUV’s bumper to raise the back hatch.
Do you need it? Probably not, though it’s fun and convenient.
You expect a good keyboard in a business laptop, but good sound? Keep reading to find out more.
Speakers on dell latitude 7400 2-in-1
Rob Thomas’ voice sounded thin and hollow when I listened to Matchbox Twenty’s 1996 hit “Back 2 Good” out of the Dell Latitude 7400’s bottom-firing speakers.
While I could hear the Southern twang in Thomas’ young, underdeveloped voice, it sounded as if he were singing through a tin can.
The same can be said for Chris Martin in Coldplay’s “Orphans.” In both cases, the speakers struggled to fill a medium-size room.
Dell Latitude 7400 2-in-1 pros
- Well built with premium feel
- Narrow bezels, vivid display
- Good battery life
- Comfortable keyboard and trackpad
- Express Sign-in feature is useful
Dell Latitude 7400 2-in-1 Cons
- No SD card slot, only microSD
- Not comfortable to use as a tablet
The Dell Latitude 7400 might look like any other business laptop, but don’t let its unremarkable design fool you; this is one impressive business laptop, thanks to its fast performance and epic battery life.
IT managers and business users will also appreciate the extensive privacy and security features available on the Latitude 7400, which include a fingerprint sensor, an IR camera and a privacy display.
For further peace of mind, the dell Latitude 7400 comes standard with a three-year warranty.
But I hesitate to recommend the Dell Latitude 7400 over top competitors like the ThinkPad X1 Carbon.
Along with being less portable, the dell Latitude 7400’s privacy display has poor viewing angles, even with the data-protecting feature turned off.
It’s also an expensive laptop, and the bottom-firing speakers aren’t great.
Overall, the dell Latitude 7400 is a great laptop with a lot to offer, but there are more exciting options to choose from