Dell Latitude 7330 UL review: an ultra-light business laptop

Dell Latitude 7330 UL review: an ultra-light business laptop

MSRP $2,440.00

“The Dell Latitude 7330 Ultralight is definitely lightweight, but it surely’s slower than other Intel Twelfth-gen laptops, its battery life suffers, and its business features are lacking.”

Pros

  • Extremely lightweight
  • Strong enterprise management
  • Good keyboard
  • Vibrant and high-contrast display

Cons

  • Old-school 16:9 display
  • Expensive
  • Below-average battery life
  • Missing key privacy and security measures

Business laptops aren’t all of the stuffy, button-up affairs they’re often known for. High-end machines are continuing to push the envelope, and now offer businesspeople comparable designs and features to mainstream devices.

Dell’s Latitude 7330 13-inch Ultralight is a superb example. It’s extraordinarily light — which is something nearly anyone could appreciate.

Nonetheless, Dell limited the Ultralight version to the purpose where a number of the most crucial business features are missing. And it’s not fast enough or long-lasting enough to make for a compelling laptop basically, despite its light weight.

Price and configurations

I reviewed a high-end configuration of the Latitude 7330 Ultralight (UL) with an Intel vPro processor and an old-school 16:9 display.

The Latitude 7330 Ultralight version has limited configurations in comparison with its heavier siblings. For instance, there’s no 4G LTE WWAN option, there’s just one 16:9 Full HD (1,920 x 1,080) IPS display to pick from, the webcam is restricted to 720p with no infrared camera for Windows 11 Hello support, and the battery is just 41 watt-hours in comparison with 58 watt-hours.

The entry-level model is $1,766 for an Intel Core i5-1235U non-vPro CPU, 8GB of RAM, and a 256GB PCIe SSD. The high-end configuration is $2,499 for a Core i7-1265U vPro, 32GB of RAM, and a 512GB PCIe SSD. My review configuration was the next-highest configuration, $2,265 for the Core i7-1265U vPro, 16GB of RAM, and a 512GB SSD.

Dell has one other business-class 13-inch laptop, the Latitude 9330, that features a more modern 16:10 display and isn’t nearly as light. It runs a couple of hundred dollars greater than the Latitude 7330 similarly configured.

The Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon Gen 10 is a competitive laptop, albeit a 14-inch model, that’s also relatively thin and light-weight. It’s several hundred dollars lower than the Latitude 7330, even with faster CPUs and higher displays. Finally, the HP Elite Dragonfly G3 is around the identical price because the Latitude 7330, albeit without Intel’s vPro and a smaller SSD. It’s just as lightweight.

Design

Dell Latitude 7330 UL front angled view showing display and keybaord deck.Mark Coppock/Digital Trends

The Latitude 7330 is out there in three options of materials: aluminum, carbon fiber, and magnesium alloy. I reviewed the magnesium version, dubbed the Latitude 7330 UL, which weighs just 2.13 kilos. That’s light enough to make it onto our list of lightest laptops. It’s thin, but not amazingly so, at 0.67 inches, and its large top and bottom bezels mean it’s not the smallest 13-inch laptop around when it comes to its footprint on the table.

It’s wider and barely less deep than the two.2-pound Elite Dragonfly G3 that’s 0.65 inches thick, but that laptop has a bigger and taller 13.5-inch 16:10 display. It’s also wider and barely less deep than the Latitude 9330, which has a 13.3-inch 16:10 display, weighs 2.8 kilos, and is 0.55 inches thick. Finally, while the 14-inch ThinkPad X1 Carbon Gen 10 is wider and deeper, it’s thinner at 0.60 inches and weighs just 2.48 kilos — greater than the Latitude but with a bigger display. Ultimately, the Latitude 7330 UL stands out for its weight but not for its thickness or the dimensions of its chassis.

Magnesium is a robust metal, but it surely’s not as stiff as aluminum. The Latitude 7330 UL, due to this fact, has some flexing within the keyboard deck and its lid bends awkwardly, showing off some LCD discoloration. That doesn’t make it a poorly built laptop, but it surely doesn’t feel as solid as all-aluminum machines just like the Dell XPS 13 Plus and the HP Spectre x360 13.5. The hinge allows the lid to open about halfway with one hand, but then it stiffens and also you’ll need the opposite hand to open all of it the way in which. It does keep the display firmly in place during heavy typing sessions. I’ll note that the magnesium alloy makes for a softer touch than aluminum, even though it might feel more like plastic to some people.

Aesthetically, the Latitude 7330 UL is about as minimalist as they arrive. The lines and angles are easy, and only the chrome Dell logo on the lid adds any flair. There’s nothing improper with simplistic designs in the event that they’re exceptionally streamlined and attractive, but this one is boring. The Latitude 9330 has that more streamlined look, while the Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon Gen 10 sports the long-lasting and attractive ThinkPad aesthetic. For my money, the HP Elite Dragonfly G3 is a sleeker and better-looking laptop.

Ports and connectivity

Dell Latitude 7330 UL left side showing ports.

Dell Latitude 7330 UL right side showing ports.

Connectivity is sweet, with two USB-C ports with Thunderbolt 4, a USB-A 3.2 Gen 1 port, a full-size HDMI port, and a 3.5mm audio jack. We’re missing an SD card reader, and the Ultralight version doesn’t offer the optional Smartcard reader and eSIM. Wireless connectivity is up thus far with Wi-Fi 6E and Bluetooth 5.2, but again the Ultralight version doesn’t have the optional WWAN support of the aluminum version.

One nice feature is Dell’s recent ExpressConnect technology that permits you to connect with two wireless networks concurrently for greater speed, and the laptop may be configured to hook up with the perfect available network.

Performance

So far as I could tell working through Dell’s very confusing configurator, the Latitude 7330 UL may be configured with considered one of two Twelfth-gen Intel U-series CPUs. There’s the 15-watt 10-core (two Performance and eight Efficient), 12-thread Core i5-1235U running at as much as 4.4GHz, and the Core i7-1265U that has the identical core and thread count but goes a bit of faster at 4.8GHz and include Intel’s vPro technology. My review unit equipped the Core i7-1265U, which promised at the very least as fast performance because the Core i7-1255U (as much as 4.7Ghz) laptops that I’ve recently reviewed.

In our benchmarks, though, the Latitude 7330 UL fell behind all the opposite Intel Twelfth-gen CPUs we’ve tested. That was true in Geekbench 5, our Handbrake test that encodes a 420MB video as H.265, and the video rendering benchmark Cinebench R23. The Latitude even fell behind within the PCMark 10 Complete benchmark, which tests quite a lot of productivity, multimedia, and artistic tasks.

The Latitude 7330 UL did exhibit some throttling that likely limited performance. And the Dell Optimizer utility provided various thermal tuning modes, of which I tested the balanced and performance. Switching to performance mode made a modest difference in Geekbench 5 and Cinebench R23, and a more significant improvement in Handbrake. As usual, switching modes didn’t impact the PCMark 10 Complete rating by much.

Overall, the Latitude 7330 UL’s performance was faster than Intel’s Eleventh-gen, but less than the standards of Twelfth-gen machines. That doesn’t mean the laptop can’t handle demanding productivity workflows, but it surely’s not going to be as fast as competing — and in lots of cases, much cheaper — machines.

Geekbench
(single / multi)
Handbrake
(seconds)
Cinebench R23
(single / multi)
PCMark 10
Complete
Dell Latitude 7330 UL
(Core i7-1265U)
Bal: 1,727 / 6,335
Perf: 1,725 / 6,896
Bal: 177
Perf: 147
Bal: 1,530 / 5,015
Perf: 1,722 / 6,182
4,767
Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon Gen 10
(Core i7-1260P)
Bal: 1,531 / 8,209
Perf: 1,580 / 8,342
Bal: 133
Perf: 138
Bal: 1,538 / 6,993
Perf: 1,538 / 6,783
4,982
MSI Prestige 14
(Core i7-1260P)
Bal: 1,505 / 10,041
Perf: 1,477 / 10,604
Bal: 114
Perf: 97
Bal: 1,553 / 8,734
Perf: 1,567 / 10,450
6,201
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
5,537
Lenovo Yoga 7i Gen7
(Core i7-1255U)
Bal: 1,652 / 8,194
Perf: 1,692 / 8,443
Bal: 200
Perf: 141
Bal: 1,679 / 7,176
Perf: 1,748 / 7,701
5,211
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
5,647

Forget gaming unless you’re playing older titles with low resolution and graphics. The Intel Iris Xe isn’t a quick GPU in the perfect cases, and the Latitude 7330 UL is among the many slowest.

3DMark
Time Spy
Fortnite
(1080p/1200p Epic)
Dell Latitude 7330 UL 
(Intel Iris Xe)
Bal: 1,235
Perf: 1,489
Bal: 11 fps
Perf: 12 fps
Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon Gen 10
(Intel Iris Xe)
Bal: 1,816
Perf: 1,820
Bal: 17 fps
Perf: 16 fps
MSI Prestige 14
(RTX 3050)
Bal: 4,438
Perf: 4,451
Bal: 23
Perf: 26
Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Yoga Gen 7
(Intel Iris Xe)
Bal: 1,899
Perf: 1,886
Bal: 17 fps
Perf: 16 fps
Lenovo Yoga 7i Gen 7
(Intel Iris Xe)
Bal: 1,790
Perf: 1,716
Bal: 18 fps
Perf: 18 fps
Asus Zenbook S 13 OLED
(Radeon graphics)
Bal: 2,110
Perf: 2,213
Bal: 19 fps
Perf: 19 fps

Display

Dell Latitude 7330 UL front view showing display.Mark Coppock/Digital Trends

I immediately noticed that the Latitude 7330 UL’s 13.3-inch 16:9 Full HD (1,920 x 1,080) IPS display was brilliant with true blacks for an IPS display. Colours seemed dynamic without being oversaturated, and apart from the old-school aspect ratio, I discovered the display quite good during my testing.

In keeping with my colorimeter, my eyes didn’t deceive me. The display was incredibly brilliant at 503 nits, well above our 300-nit standard. Its contrast was excellent for an IPS panel at 1,650:1, which made black text pop on white backgrounds. Colours hit the premium display average at 95% of sRGB and 74% of AdobeRGB, although that average has been creeping upward currently. Accuracy was good at a DeltaE of 1.56, where lower than 2.0 is taken into account adequate for creative work. Amongst our comparison group, the Latitude 7330 UL most closely matched the Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon Gen 10, with the previous being brighter and the latter having barely wider colours.

Unfortunately, the Latitude Ultralight doesn’t include options for touchscreens.

Productivity employees, at whom this laptop is aimed, will enjoy this display in the event that they can live with the resolution and aspect ratio. Creators will wish to look elsewhere, but nevertheless, this isn’t a laptop meant for all-day video or photo editing.

Brightness
(nits)
Contrast sRGB gamut AdobeRGB gamut Accuracy DeltaE
(lower is best)
Dell Latitude 7330 UL
(IPS)
503 1,650:1 95% 74% 1.56
Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon Gen 10
(IPS)
411 1660:1 98% 76% 1.96
MSI Prestige 14
(IPS)
317 1820:1 97% 72% 3.67
Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Yoga Gen 7
(IPS)
386 1900:1 100% 81% 0.78
MSI Summit E14 Flip
(IPS)
516 1320:1 100% 89% 1.10
Lenovo Yoga 9i 14 Gen 7
(OLED)
406 28380:1 100% 95% 0.87
Lenovo IdeaPad Slim 7 Carbon
(OLED)
397 27590:1 100% 96% 0.88

Two downward-firing speakers provide the audio and put out a surprising amount of volume, with zero distortion and clean mids and highs. There was even a touch of bass.

The speakers were adequate for watching Netflix and casual music listening, although motion movies and more demanding music tastes will demand a superb pair of headphones.

Keyboard, touchpad, and webcam

Dell Latitude 7330 UL top down view showing keyboard and touchpad.Mark Coppock/Digital Trends

The keyboard’s keycaps are barely small, but the important thing spacing is generous enough, making it easy to hit the correct letters. The switches are firm with a handy guide a rough bottoming motion, meaning that should you like a bit of more pressure, you’ll like this keyboard. It is perhaps a bit much should you’re accustomed to lighter keys. I’d rate it behind the perfect laptops, including the Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon Gen 10’s lighter and even snappier version.

The touchpad supports Windows 11’s multitouch gestures well enough, and its surface is comfortable. It’s a bit on the small side, though, thanks partially to the shorter display and a general lack of space on the palm rest.

There’s also no Windows 11 passwordless login support. In case you want an infrared camera for facial recognition or a fingerprint reader, you’ll need to decide on considered one of the heavier models. That’s particularly disappointing for a business laptop, where security is usually a vital factor.

Finally, the webcam is just 720p. Again, there’s a price to be paid for the lighter chassis — a Full HD webcam and infrared camera shouldn’t be an option on the Ultralight.

Privacy and security

Dell builds several privacy and security tools into its Latitude machines, including its SafeBIOS to assist avoid hacking and Dell Encryption Enterprise. There’s also quite a lot of other enterprise management tools including Intel Energetic Management Technology (AMT) for distant management and Intel Hardware Shield for hardware-enhanced security. Those are best supported by an Intel vPro chip, which my review unit was equipped with.

Because my machine lacked an infrared camera, it didn’t support the onlooker detection, Look Away Detect (which dims the screen based on user behavior), and ExpressSign-In wake on approach tools that other Latitude 7330 models support. The only real nod to privacy on the Ultralight model is a sliding physical shutter for the webcam.

Battery life

Dell Latitude 7330 UL side view showing ports and display.Mark Coppock/Digital Trends

The Ultralight version of the Latitude 7330 is restricted to a 41-watt-hour battery, whereas the opposite models may be equipped with 58 watt-hours. The display is just Full HD, and it uses a 15-watt CPU, so I used to be hopeful that I’d see at the very least decent battery life.

In our suite of battery tests, though, the Latitude 7330 UL fell about an hour below average across the board. In our web browsing test that cycles through a handful of complex web sites, it managed just seven hours, and in our video test that loops a neighborhood Full HD Avengers trailer, it hit 10.5 hours. Finally, within the PCMark 10 Application test that best indicates productivity battery life, the Latitude made it to eight.5 hours. That’s lower than each of the laptops in our comparison group and below average basically.

The Latitude 7330 UL is unlikely to get you thru a full day of productivity work unless your tasks are light on the CPU. Anything more and also you’ll be pulling out your charger.

Web browsing Video PCMark 10
Applications
Dell Latitude 7330 UL
(Core i7-1265U)
6 hours, 55 minutes 10 hours, 33 minutes 8 hours, 33 minutes
Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon Gen 10
(Core i7-1260P)
7 hours, 39 minutes 14 hours, 34 minutes 10 hours, 42 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
HP Spectre x360 13.5
(Core i7-1255U)
9 hours, 58 minutes 13 hours, 59 minutes 10 hours, 52 minutes
 Asus Zenbook S 13 OLED
(Ryzen 7 6800U)
8 hours, 4 minutes 13 hours, 13 minutes N/A

Our take

The Latitude 7330 Ultralight feels like a terrific idea. Take a solid business laptop and construct a version with lighter materials, making it considered one of the lightest laptops you may buy. But Dell compromised an excessive amount of, stripping off a number of the features that might be most compelling to its goal market.

It doesn’t help that performance is on the low end of its class, and its battery life is lower than average. Yes, it’s a really light laptop, but that’s not enough to justify its high price in comparison with some compelling alternatives.

Are there any alternatives?

The Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon Gen 10 can be very light, given its 14-inch display. It offers similar business features, is quicker, and gets higher battery life. It’s a solid competitor.

Lenovo’s Yoga 9i Gen 7 is a superb alternative should you don’t need those (sometimes missing) business features. It’s gorgeous, well-built, and has a surprising display. It’s also faster and cheaper.

Finally, I all the time recommend Apple’s MacBook Pro 14 as an option. Again, should you’re not plugging into an enterprise, you won’t find one other laptop that’s as fast with such excellent battery life, together with essentially the most solid construct available. And it’s not rather more expensive, if in any respect.

How long will it last?

The Latitude 7330 UL has some slight bending and flexing, which is common in a magnesium chassis. But, that doesn’t mean it’s not durable enough for years of service. It’s reasonably well-equipped for the near future as well. Dell offers a 3-year warranty with the Latitude, which is welcome.

Must you buy it?

No. There are higher business laptops available which are only barely heavier. The Latitude 7330 UL just makes too many compromises for its light weight.

Editors’ Recommendations



We will be happy to hear your thoughts

Leave a reply

Elgin Shopping Mall
Logo
Compare items
  • Total (0)
Compare
0
Shopping cart