Dell Inspiron 14 2-in-1 (7420) review: A compromised experience

Dell Inspiron 14 2-in-1 (7420)

MSRP $1,050.00

“The Dell Inspiron 2-in-1 could be a solid option were it not for the mediocre display and battery life.”


  • Good productivity performance
  • Decent keyboard and touchpad
  • Streamlined attractiveness
  • 1080p webcam


  • Below-average battery life
  • Inferior display
  • No Thunderbolt 4

I’ve reviewed more 14-inch laptops over the past several months than every other size, demonstrating how popular these devices have change into.

The Dell Inspiron 14 2-in-1 has been one among the more popular 2-in-1 options, especially in case you’re hoping to save lots of just a few hundred bucks in comparison with essentially the most premium laptops. And Dell has updated the machine for 2022 with a rather more streamlined aesthetic and an upgrade to Intel’s Twelfth-gen CPUs.

The high-end model I reviewed got here in at $1,050, though a less expensive $850 base configuration can be available. Unfortunately, no matter the way you configure it, the low-quality display and mediocre battery life make this 2-in-1 hard to recommend.


Dell Inspiron 14 2-in-1 7420 rear view showing lid and logo.Mark Coppock/Digital Trends

The Inspiron 14 2-in-1 received a design refresh for the newest version, with sharply angled rear edges replacing rounded surfaces and horizontal rear vents taking the place of round holes. The silver color scheme of my review unit contributes to a more streamlined look than before, –a definite improvement. Overall, the Inspiron now looks more just like the XPS line, which is nice.

The $735 Lenovo Flex 5i 14 is more understated in its design, while the $650 Asus VivoBook Flip 14 has a black chassis that’s attractive without being garish. Those laptops are barely inexpensive than the Inspiron 14 2-in-1, and in case you jump up in price, you possibly can buy one among those most stunning 14-inch 2-in-1s available today, the Lenovo Yoga 9i Gen 7.

A mixture of aluminum within the lid, plastic within the chassis bottom, and mylar within the palm rest and touchpad are utilized in the Inspiron 14 7420 2-in-1’s construction. The result’s some bending within the lid and flexing within the keyboard deck, while the chassis bottom is solid.

It’s an adequate construct for the worth, and it’s more robust than the Asus Vivobook Flip 14 while being equal to the Lenovo IdeaPad Flex 5i 14. The Asus Vivobook S 14X, priced around similar to the Inspiron, is built as solidly as well. You’ll need to extend the worth in case you want essentially the most robust construct quality.

Dell Inspiron 14 2-in-1 (7420) used as a tablet.Mark Coppock/Digital Trends

The display bezels aren’t the smallest around, particularly on the highest and bottom, making the Inspiron 14 2-in-1 with its 16:10 display a bit deeper than a number of the competition. It’s 0.62increase to 0.70 inches thick and weighs 3.61 kilos with the larger 54 watt-hour battery, which is a decrease in thickness but a rise in weight.

That compares to the Asus Vivobook Flip 14 at 0.72 inches and three.31 kilos and the Lenovo IdeaPad Flex 5i 14 at 0.82 inches and three.3 kilos. The Inspiron 14 2-in-1 isn’t the thinnest nor the lightest 14-inch convertible 2-in-1, but it surely’s not overly large either.


Dell Inspiron 14 2-in-1 7420 left side view showing ports.

Dell Inspiron 14 2-in-1 7420 right side view showing ports.

Connectivity is a mixed bag. You get two USB-C 3.2 Gen 2 ports, but no Thunderbolt 4 support — which is disappointing — together with a USB-A 3.2 Gen 1 port, a full-size HDMI 1.4 port, a 3.5mm audio jack, and a full-size SD card reader. The SD card reader is a superb addition to what’s otherwise an ordinary array.

Wi-Fi 6E and Bluetooth 5.2 are options, meaning you possibly can gain access to the most modern wireless connectivity.


Dell Inspiron 14 2-in-1 7420 front angled view with keyboard folded under and showing display.Mark Coppock/Digital Trends

The Inspiron 14 2-in-1 7420 is the primary laptop we’ve reviewed with the Intel Twelfth-gen Core i7-1255U. It’s a 15-watt, 10-core (two Performance and eight Efficient), 12-thread CPU that’s a midrange lower-power option for thin-and-light laptops. We’ve tested several machines with the 28-watt, 12-core (4 Performance and eight Efficient), 16-thread Core i7-1260P, after which Intel also has the even lower-power Core i7-1250U, with the identical core and thread count because the Core i7-1255U, but running at 9 watts. We haven’t tested that CPU or every other variations with barely faster frequencies or more cores.

The underside line is that the Core i7-1255U is meant to supply slower performance than the Core i7-1260P while offering higher efficiency. Regarding the previous, the Inspiron 14 2-in-1 slots in between the 28-watt Eleventh-gen four-core/eight-thread Core i7-1165G7 and the Core i7-1260P. That’s not necessarily a verdict on the Core i7-1255U’s performance because we want to account for Dell’s thermal design and tuning. We’ll must test more laptops with the chip to attract any firm conclusions.

Surprisingly, the Inspiron 14 2-in-1 was quite fast in single-core tests.

As usual, I used the laptop’s thermal tuning utility that enables adjusting fan speeds and CPU frequencies to optimize for quiet and funky or loud and fast operation. I’ve reported each balanced and performance modes within the table below, however the utility wasn’t as impactful within the Inspiron 14 2-in-1 as similar utilities have been in another laptops. As well as, as with most thin-and-light laptops we test, there was some throttling in our more CPU-intensive benchmarks, particularly in performance mode.

Surprisingly, the Inspiron 14 2-in-1 was quite fast in single-core tests in Geekbench 5 and Cinebench R23, beating every laptop in our comparison group except the Lenovo Yoga 9i Gen 7. It wasn’t as fast in multi-core mode because the Core i7-1260P-equipped laptops, particularly in performance mode, nor was it in a position to sustain with the AMD Ryzen 7 6800U within the Asus ZenBook S 13 OLED. Its rating in our Handbrake test that encodes a 420MB video as H.265, was the second slowest overall, coming in only ahead of the Asus ZenBook 14X OLED with a Core i7-1165G7.

The Core i7-1255U, a minimum of within the Inspiron 14 2-in-1, was a slight step up from the Eleventh-gen Core i7. Notably, the newer model is slower than the previous generation with the AMD Ryzen 7 5700U. Overall, the Inspiron 14 2-in-1 7420 was fast enough for demanding productivity workflows, but it surely wasn’t particularly quick at CPU-intensive creative tasks.

(single / multi)
Cinebench R23
(single / multi)
PCMark 10
Dell Inspiron 14 2-in-1
(Core i7-1255U)
Bal: 1,703 / 6,520
Perf: 1,685 / 6,791
Bal: 153
Perf: 141
Bal: 1,729 / 6,847
Perf: 1,773 / 7,009
Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Yoga Gen 7
(Core i7-1260P)
Bal: 1,650 / 8,080
Perf: 1,621 / 8,544
Bal: 116
Perf: 120
Bal: 1,587 / 7,682
Perf: 1,611 / 8,078
Lenovo Yoga 9i 14 Gen 7
(Core i7-1260P)
Bal: 1,717 / 9,231
Perf: 1,712 / 10,241
Bal: 130
Perf: 101
Bal: 1,626 / 7,210
Perf: 1,723 / 8,979
Dell Inspiron 14 2-in-1
(AMD Ryzen 7 5700U)
Bal: 1,184 / 6,281
Perf: N/A
Bal: 116
Perf: N/A
Bal: 1,287 / 8,013
Perf: N/A
Asus ZenBook 14X OLED
(Core i7-1165G7)
Bal: 1,536 / 5,780
Perf: 1,527 / 5,776
Bal: 175
Perf: 162
Bal: 1,479 / 5,717
Perf: 1,502 / 6,252
Asus ZenBook S 13 OLED
(Ryzen 7 6800U)
Bal: 1,417 / 6,854
Perf: 1,404 / 7,223
Bal: 112
Perf: 111
Bal: 1,402 / 8,682
Perf: 1,409 / 8,860

The Inspiron 14 2-in-1 scored well below the Intel Iris Xe average within the 3DMark Time Spy test. Unsurprisingly, the laptop’s Fortnite rating was below average at 12 frames per second (fps) at 1200p and epic graphics. The Inspiron 14 2-in-1 is even less of a gaming laptop than the standard Iris Xe machine.

Time Spy
(1080p/1200p Epic)
Dell Inspiron 14 2-in-1
(Intel Iris Xe)
Bal: 1,492
Perf: 1,502
Bal: 12 fps
Perf: 12 fps
Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Yoga Gen 7
(Intel Iris Xe)
Bal: 1,899
Perf: 1,886
Bal: 17 fps
Perf: 16 fps
Lenovo Yoga 9i 14 Gen 7
(Intel Iris Xe)
Bal: 1,658
Perf: 1,979
Bal: 12 fps
Perf: N/A
Dell Inspiron 14 2-in-1
(Radeon graphics)
Bal: 1,247
Perf: N/A
Bal: 14 fps
Perf: N/A
Asus ZenBook 14X OLED
(GeForce MX450)
Bal: 1,756
Perf: 1,765
Bal: 18
Perf: N/A
Asus ZenBook S 13 OLED
(Radeon graphics)
Bal: 2,110
Perf: 2,213
Bal: 19 fps
Perf: 19 fps


Dell Inspiron 14 2-in-1 7420 front view showing display.Mark Coppock/Digital Trends

We dinged the previous-generation Inspiron 14 2-in-1 for its poor display, a 16:9 panel with well below-average colours and brightness. Unfortunately, although Dell improved the display to a 16:10 version at Full HD+ (1,920 x 1,200), all the pieces else remained roughly the identical (or worse). As I used the newest review unit, I used to be reminded of that display — and never in a very good way.

The colours weren’t even near the midrange and higher average of 95% of sRGB and 75% of AdobeRGB, at just 63% and 48%, respectively. Color accuracy was also poor at a DeltaE of three.35 (1.0 or less is taken into account excellent). The contrast was above average at 1,330:1, exceeding our threshold of 1,000:1, however the brightness was just 288 nits, below our preferred 300 nits. It’s true that the laptops in our comparison group are all dearer, however the Apple MacBook Air M1 and Microsoft Surface Go 2 are in the identical ballpark and have a lot better displays.

That is an unlucky display on a laptop exceeding $1,000, particularly on condition that IPS displays have generally improved. And it’s much more unlucky this time, on condition that the previous generation was faster and longer-lasting (see below).

Contrast sRGB gamut AdobeRGB gamut Accuracy DeltaE
(lower is healthier)
Dell Inspiron 14 2-in-1
288 1,330:1 63% 48% 3.35
Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Yoga Gen 7
386 1,900:1 100% 81% 0.78
MSI Summit E14 Flip
516 1,320:1 100% 89% 1.10
Lenovo Yoga 9i 14 Gen 7
406 28,380:1 100% 95% 0.87
Lenovo IdeaPad Slim 7i Pro
369 1,340:1 100% 80% 1.65
Lenovo IdeaPad Slim 7 Carbon
397 27,590:1 100% 96% 0.88

Keyboard, touchpad, and webcam

Dell Inspiron 14 2-in-1 7420 top down view showing keyboard, touchpad, and pen.Mark Coppock/Digital Trends

The Inspiron 14 2-in-1’s keyboard is wide and spacious, with large keycaps. The switches are exceptionally light, with a solid click as keystrokes bottom out. They’re perhaps a hair too light, though, as they lack the precision of a Dell XPS or HP Spectre keyboard.

The touchpad is 14% larger than before, with a mylar material that gives a smooth surface that’s comfortable for swiping. It’s a Microsoft Precision touchpad, after all, so Windows 11 multitouch gesture support is precise and reliable. The clicks are solid and quiet enough, making the touchpad a pleasure to make use of.

The display is touch-enabled and works in addition to usual. It supports Dell’s optional Lively Pen, which I attempted out and located pretty much as good for inking as most 2-in-1s today.

Windows 11 Hello password-free login is provided by an optional fingerprint reader embedded in the ability button, which is precisely the proper place. It worked quickly and reliably during my testing.

Dell Inspiron 14 2-in-1 7420 front view showing webcam.Mark Coppock/Digital Trends

The webcam is Full HD, which is a pleasant upgrade. It provided a transparent and sharp image that ought to keep hybrid staff completely happy as they interact with their colleagues. There’s also a physical privacy slider that covers the webcam for some additional privacy.

Battery life

Dell Inspiron 14 2-in-1 7420 rear corner view showing ports and vents.Mark Coppock/Digital Trends

Judging a laptop’s battery life is usually a challenge. While absolutely the numbers are clear, letting us see how long a laptop lasts against its competition, determining which aspects led to its longevity could be complicated. That’s particularly true with a laptop that has a brand-new CPU that’s meant to be more efficient. So many aspects come into play that it’s difficult to point to only one because the reason for really good or really bad battery life.

The Inspiron 14 2-in-1 is a working example. It has 54 watt-hours of battery capability, which isn’t quite a bit for a 14-inch laptop, even given the lower-resolution Full HD+ display. The Lenovo Yoga 9i Gen 7, for instance, has 70 watt-hours, but it surely also has a power-hungry high-res OLED display and a faster CPU.

At the identical time, the Lenovo Thinkpad X1 Yoga Gen 7 with a Core i7-1260p has just 57 watt-hours, not significantly greater than the Inspiron, but our review unit was equipped with a low-power Full HD+ display. Taking a look at our battery life test results, the Inspiron fell well behind each laptops on two of our tests and was generally below average, though its CPU is supposed to be a more efficient option.

Web browsing Video PCMark 10
Dell Inspiron 14 2-in-1
(Core i7-1255U)
6 hours, 42 minutes 10 hours, 6 minutes 8 hours, 43 minutes
Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Yoga Gen 7
(Core i7-1260P)
10 hours, 10 minutes 16 hours, 12 minutes 10 hours, 33 minutes
Lenovo Yoga 9i 14 Gen 7
(Core i7-1260P)
9 hours, 10 minutes 12 hours, 45 minutes 8 hours, 32 minutes
Dell Inspiron 14 2-in-1
(Ryzen 7 5700U)
12 hours, 53 minutes 16 hours, 3 minutes N/A
 Asus Zenbook S 13 OLED
(Ryzen 7 6800U)
8 hours, 4 minutes 13 hours, 13 minutes N/A
Asus ZenBook 14X OLED
(Core i7-1165G7)
7 hours, 33 minutes 10 hours, 42 minutes 8 hours, 2 minutes

In our web-browsing test that cycles through a handful of popular and complicated web sites, the Inspiron 14 2-in-1 managed just 6.75 hours, just a few hours lower than we wish to see. It hit 10 hours in our video test that loops a neighborhood Full HD Avengers trailer, which is about 90 minutes lower than average. Finally, within the PCMark 10 Applications battery test that’s the most effective indication of productivity battery life, the Inspiron made it to eight.75 hours, also a bit lower than average.

Overall, battery life wasn’t great, and the Inspiron 14 2-in-1 may struggle to make it through a full day of anything greater than a lightweight productivity workload. As I discussed above, we will’t draw strong conclusions concerning the Core i7-1255U’s efficiency from testing one laptop. Too many other variables come into play, and we’ll must wait to check more laptops before a pattern emerges. Interestingly, the previous Inspiron 14 2-in-1 generation with the Ryzen 7 5700U got significantly higher battery life.

Price and configurations

My review unit is priced at $1,050 for a Core i7-1255U, 16GB of DDR4 RAM, a 512GB PCIe SSD, and a 14-inch Full HD+ display. Drop all the way down to a Core i5-1235U and 8GB of RAM, and also you’ll spend $850.

There’s also a model based on the AMD Ryzen 5 5625U with 8GB of RAM, a 512GB SSD, and a 14-inch Full HD+ display for $800.

Our take

The Inspiron 14 7420 2-in-1 takes a step back in performance and battery life from the previous generation while retaining the identical subpar display. It’s attractively priced at $1,050, but you’re making too many compromises.

While I used to be in a position to recommend that last version, this one doesn’t make the cut. It could be price spending just a few hundred dollars more to get a greater laptop, and even just a few hundred dollars less for laptops that perform as well though they’re based on older CPUs. Or, you possibly can wait for the $1,000 laptop class to catch as much as Intel’s Twelfth-gen wave.

Are there any alternatives?

I’m unaware of every other 2-in-1s in the identical $800 to $1,000 range that equip Intel Twelfth-gen CPUs, so a direct suggestion is difficult.

If you happen to don’t need a 2-in-1 and might drop down a bit in size, then the Asus Zenbook S 13 is an amazing option. It’s $250 more, but it surely offers a faster AMD Ryzen 7 6800U processor and a stunning OLED display.

If you need to avoid wasting money, then you might consider the Asus Vivobook Flex 14. It has the same display and performs similarly even with an older CPU, however the battery life is healthier.

How long will it last?

The Inspiron 14 2-in-1 is strong enough to supply years of productive use, with modern components (apart from no Thunderbolt 4 support) that ought to keep Windows 11 running easily for quite a while. The industry-standard one-year warranty is disappointing, as all the time.

Must you buy it?

No. While it’s priced right, you’ll make too many compromises. There are numerous other 14-inch laptops to think about which might be faster, longer-lasting, and value some extra money.

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