Dell Latitude 6430u Ultrabook, All Business

Article Index

Summary and Conclusion

The Dell Latitude 6430u isn’t your average ultrabook; it was designed and built specifically with the business world in mind, offering robust security measures, some rugged build features, and relatively easy and powerful manageability. But it’s not just a boring business box; it includes some smart design features such as the rubberized finish and silver accents, and the specifications are more than sufficient for what you’ll typically need in the business world. It delivered impressive performance in our benchmark tests too.

The ultrabook market is a big one, and there’s a lot of competition, but Dell deftly sidesteps most of it with the Latitude 6430u, focusing on businesses as opposed to the mainstream consumer. On the consumer side, the Core i5 (Ivy Bridge) processor, Intel HD 4000 graphics, 8GB of fast memory, and 128GB SSD inside the 6430u are strong specifications, but the don't necessarily stand out. In the corporate world, where companies manage dozens, hundreds, or thousands of notebooks and do everything possible to keep costs to a minimum, however, a machine with those specs would likely be considered high end.

Speaking practically, consider the cost/benefit of a Dell Latitude 6430u: Indeed, the initial cost is probably a bit on the high side, but part of what you’re paying for is the security, management, and longevity we mentioned earlier. It’s worth making a larger initial investment if your fleet of machines will last longer than cheaper options, and IT folks will surely be happy to have the management tools and security options attached to the ultrabooks they’re dealing with on a daily basis.

Further, the specifications on the Dell Latitude 6430u are robust enough to ensure that these computers can perform at an appropriate level for years.

You can grab yourself an ultrabook for as little as $800--for that matter, the base model of the Latitude 6430u is just $899 (Core i3 processor, 4GB DDR3-1600MHz SDRAM, 64GB SSD, Intel HD 4000 graphics)--or you can easily spend upwards of $1,500-$1,600. The model Dell sent us will run you $1,278 as configured, which is right in the middle of that range. (Dell sent us the optional external DVD+/-RW drive with our unit, which is an additional $74.25.)

For the average consumer, the Dell Latitude 6430u would be a fine machine. It’s replete with strong features, and its ruggedness is a valuable design element whether you fly internationally for business or just have a small child at home who knocks things off of coffee tables. That said, for $1,278 you might be able to do a bit better, especially in terms of looks. For business users, however, you should just go ahead and convince your IT department that you need this computer.

  • Strong specifications and performance
  • Rugged design for longevity
  • Included corporate security and management features
  • Great long-term value for business
  • Price may be too high for consumers
  • Somewhat plain overall design
  • Weak camera performance

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