The best 2-in-1 laptops for work I tested weren’t from Lenovo or HP


Cesar Cadenas/ZDNET

Key points of ZDNET

  • Dell Inspiron 14 2-in-1 2024 is a great convertible laptop for busy professionals on the go.
  • This model offers solid performance thanks to AMD hardware and decent battery life.
  • Some users will be disappointed by the lackluster display.

Dell is famous for making laptops that perform well like Inspiron 14 Plus 7440, a model I reviewed earlier this year with solid performance and good quality-of-life features. However, the company has upped the ante with another solid work device in the form of a convertible 2-in-1 with Inspiron 14 2 in 1 7445.

The new Inspiron 14 convertible lets you flip the screen all the way back and turn the device into a tablet, providing a level of flexibility that the previous model lacked. Therefore, the Inspiron 14 2-in-1 is more suitable for users who need a computer capable of performing many tasks. The touchscreen alone adds a lot to its toolkit, allowing creative professionals to quickly diagram or sketch for work.

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Under the hood, you’ll find a different hardware setup than the older Inspiron. Instead of an Intel chipset, the convertible has an AMD Ryzen 7 8840HS processor, an AMD Radeon 780M graphics card, and 16GB of memory. This configuration is intended to handle office-related tasks like multitasking with documents or holding video calls with ease.

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I’m curious to see if it can perform better than the Inspiron 14 Plus, which has an Intel Core Ultra 7 CPU. So I ran some benchmark tests and according to the results, the two models performed at a similar level. Although I found the Inspiron 14 2-in-1 to be faster at displaying images than its counterpart, making it the better performing model.

Unfortunately, the Full HD Plus (1,920 x 1,200 pixels) touchscreen on the Inspiron 2-in-1 is quite disappointing. I’ve seen low-resolution laptops make up for lack of visual fidelity with software enhancements (like HDR 10), but Intel’s machine doesn’t have any of those features. This, results in dull colors.

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Those are all the main differences between the two, besides some minor mentions. For example, the rounded wrist rest has returned, providing a comfortable experience. Speaking of the keyboard, it feels fine in my hands. Each key feels soft, but the generous travel distance of the keys makes up for that. However, this time I don’t like the trackpad as much because it is smaller.

If you travel or go to work with your laptop, you won’t have a problem with this machine as it weighs only 3.77 pounds. It’s also made of aluminum, providing the sturdiness needed to survive frequent travel.

I should also mention that the Inspiron 14 2-in-1 has similar downward-facing vents to vent heat, which I usually don’t like. Interestingly, however, the Inspiron 14 2-in-1 doesn’t generate much heat in the first place. I had a very comfortable experience working on this laptop as it remained cool even during prolonged use. I’m not entirely sure what Dell did to improve the cooling system, but I’m glad to see it.

dell-inspiron-14-2-in-1 keyboard

Cesar Cadenas/ZDNET

Of course, we can’t forget the speaker system. Dell’s Inspiron 14 2-in-1 has a very nice set of pipes. Music and movies sound great thanks to your computer’s drivers. Part of its quality is due to the internal woofer that adds powerful bass to the output. The drivers also support Dolby Atmos which is capable of immersing the user in a bubble of sound.

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For the battery, I did ZDNET’s usual test of running an average load on a laptop. This includes non-stop YouTube live streaming at 720p resolution and 50% brightness. I ran the Inspiron 2-in-1 for a maximum of about eight hours when in Best Power Efficiency mode. Not too bad; That’s enough to last you all day, although it would be nice if it lasted 10 or 12 hours.

ZDNET Buying Tips

Price for Dell Inspiron 14 2 in 1 starting at $729, a great price for this laptop: you’re getting a solid work machine that can handle almost anything you can throw at it for under $1,000. If you want to upgrade to a Ryzen 7 8840HS processor (which is what I tested here in this review), the price increases to $949.

I also recommend choosing Midnight Blue as the color for your laptop. The Ice Blue option increases the price by $100 because it runs Windows 11 Pro. Go with a darker color if you don’t care about a professional-grade operating system.


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