Enlarge (credit: Valentina Palladino)

There are more ultra-mobile professionals now than ever before, which is why OEMs are developing increasingly thin-and-light laptops that will appeal to those users. No one wants to add heft to their bag, regardless of whether they're going off on a 10-hour flight or a 10-minute commute to work, thus increasing the appeal of thin-and-light laptops. But the most mobile among us will only go as thin and light as our performance needs allow us to—if a laptop isn't powerful or efficient enough to help you get work done, its svelte characteristics won't make up for that.
Enter the HP Elite Dragonfly two-in-one laptop, which is HP's answer to this problem. It's an ultra-slim laptop with a MIL-spec-tested design that weighs just 2.18 pounds, and it has the power and security features of one of HP's Elite series laptops. HP is betting on the idea that professionals will choose the thinnest and lightest laptop possible that doesn't compromise the performance or battery life they need to get things done regardless of their location—and that they'll pay top dollar to get it. We spent a few days with the Elite Dragonfly convertible to see how well-designed it actually is and to see if taking thin and light to the extreme hinders any necessities.
Look and feel

 
[TR]
[TH="colspan: 4, align: left"]Specs at a glance: HP Elite Dragonfly two-in-one laptop[/TH]
[/TR]
[TR]
[TD][/TD]
[TD]As reviewed[/TD]
[TD]Lowest[/TD]
[TD]Best[/TD]
[/TR]
[TR]
[TD]Screen[/TD]
[TD]13.3-inch FHD (1920×1080) touchscreen[/TD]
[TD]13.3-inch FHD (1920×1080) touchscreen[/TD]
[TD]13.3-inch 4K (3840×2160) touchscreen[/TD]
[/TR]
[TR]
[TD]OS[/TD]
[TD]Windows 10 Home[/TD]
[TD]Windows 10 Home[/TD]
[TD]Windows Pro 64[/TD]
[/TR]
[TR]
[TD]CPU[/TD]
[TD]Core i7-8665U[/TD]
[TD]Intel Core i5-8265U[/TD]
[TD]Core i7-8665U w/ vPro[/TD]
[/TR]
[TR]
[TD]RAM[/TD]
[TD]16GB[/TD]
[TD]8GB[/TD]
[TD]16GB[/TD]
[/TR]
[TR]
[TD]HDD[/TD]
[TD]512GB PCIe SSD + 32GB Optane Memory[/TD]
[TD]256GB PCIe SSD[/TD]
[TD]512GB PCIe SSD + 32GB Optane Memory[/TD]
[/TR]
[TR]
[TD]GPU[/TD]
[TD="colspan: 3"]Intel UHD Graphics 620[/TD]
[/TR]
[TR]
[TD]Networking[/TD]
[TD="colspan: 3"]Intel AX200 Wi-Fi 5 (2×2), Bluetooth 4.2[/TD]
[/TR]
[TR]
[TD]Ports[/TD]
[TD="colspan: 3"]2 x Thunderbolt 3, 1 x USB-A, 1 x HDMI, 1 x nano SIM, 1 x lock slot, 1 x 3.5mm headphone jack[/TD]
[/TR]
[TR]
[TD]Size[/TD]
[TD="colspan: 3"]11.98×7.78×0.63 inches (304×198×16mm)[/TD]
[/TR]
[TR]
[TD]Weight[/TD]
[TD]2.5 pounds (40 ounces)[/TD]
[TD]2.18 pounds (34.0 ounces)[/TD]
[TD]2.5 pounds (40 ounces)[/TD]
[/TR]
[TR]
[TD]Battery[/TD]
[TD]56.2Wh battery[/TD]
[TD]38Wh battery[/TD]
[TD]56.2Wh battery[/TD]
[/TR]
[TR]
[TD]Warranty[/TD]
[TD="colspan: 3"]1 year[/TD]
[/TR]
[TR]
[TD]Extras[/TD]
[TD="colspan: 3"]Fingerprint reader, IR camera, optional vPro, optional LTE, TPM 2.0, absolute persistence module, power-on authentication, HP DriveLock and Automatic DriveLock, HP Sure Click, HP Secure Erase, HP Sure Start, HP Sure Run, HP Sure Recovery, HP Sure Sense, HP BIOSphere[/TD]
[/TR]
[TR]
[TD]Price[/TD]
[TD]$2,169[/TD]
[TD]$1,549 (available at this price point soon)[/TD]
[TD]$2,369[/TD]
[/TR]


HP Elite Dragonfly laptop

Starting at $1,629 from HP




(Ars Technica may earn compensation for sales from links on this post through affiliate programs.)


Design and durability

Being part of the Elite family, the Elite Dragonfly laptop had to adhere to certain durability and performance standards that users are accustomed to from that line. We'll get to the performance chops in a bit, but from a design perspective, the Elite Dragonfly surprised me.

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