HP Elite Dragonfly Chromebook Review: It Checks All the Boxes

It looks as if yearly there is a new Chromebook that actually strikes the class ahead. Google’s Pixelbook, Samsung’s Galaxy ChromebookLenovo’s Chromebook Duet and Acer’s Chromebook Spin 713 all come to thoughts. The HP Elite Dragonfly Chromebook is now on that listing. HP, Google and Intel got down to create a whole Chromebook for enterprise greater than two years in the past and the Elite Dragonfly Chromebook is the outcome, a legit ChromeOS dream machine for hybrid employees. 


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But regardless of the Elite Dragonfly Chromebook’s greatness, it is in all probability not for you. Again, that is primarily designed for companies. Of course, for client Chromebook converts who already know the proper combo of internet, Android and Linux apps wanted to get their work completed, the Elite Dragonfly is ideal for being productive anyplace. 

Unless your IT division is handing one among these beauties over to you, although, the value is probably going going to be a deterrent. The Elite Dragonfly Chromebook begins at $1,149. The customized configuration HP despatched us for evaluate is greater than $1,500, nonetheless, and it is an enterprise mannequin with an Intel Core i5 vPro processor — a primary for Chromebooks — to extend safety (which is already sturdy on Chromebooks). Enterprise variations additionally get a 12 months of Parallels for Chromebook for many who would possibly want legacy software program. For industrial use, you may want a vPro chip however in any other case, the bottom mannequin goes to be a lot for many Chromebook customers. It would not embrace HP’s wonderful wi-fi rechargeable pen and it additionally would not assist the pen obtainable for HP’s Chromebook x2 11

Like

  • Great appear and feel
  • Fantastic video conferencing expertise
  • Thunderbolt 4
  • 4G LTE/5G wi-fi obtainable
  • Haptic touchpad and spill-resistant keyboard
  • Extra safety with vPro

Don’t Like

  • USI pen not included with all configurations
  • Palm rejection might be higher
  • Made for enterprise and priced that manner

HP Elite Dragonfly Chromebook

Price as reviewed $1,519
Display measurement/decision 13.5-inch 2,256×1,504 contact show
CPU Intel Core i5-1245U vPro
Memory ‎8GB LPDDR4X 4,266 MHz
Storage 256GB NVMe PCIe SSD
Connections Thunderbolt 4 USB-C (x2), USB-A, HDMI 2.0 out, microSD slot, 3.5mm combo audio jack
Networking Wi-Fi 6E (802.11ax), Bluetooth 5.2, 4G LTE/5G elective
Operating system ChromeOS/Android 11
AUE June 2030

Complete collaborative expertise

One of the primary issues HP, Google and Intel centered on with the Elite Dragonfly Chromebook was the collaborative expertise. Most producers prior to now 12 months bumped up the webcam decision on premium Chromebooks from 720p to 1080p aka HD to full HD. HP did that, placing a 5-megapixel webcam within the Dragonfly. But it additionally makes use of picture processing developed initially for Google Pixel cellphone cameras. There is HDR processing happening within the background to stability out sturdy shadows in addition to blown-out highlights.

Image of a man sitting in front of a brightly lit window taken with the webcam in the HP Elite Dragonfly Chromebook.Image of a man sitting in front of a brightly lit window taken with the webcam in the HP Elite Dragonfly Chromebook.

Thanks to HDR algorithms from Pixel telephones, the Dragonfly’s webcam delivers nice outcomes with backlit topics. 


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For instance, the image above is a screenshot of the Dragonfly’s webcam. I’m sitting in a room solely lit by the window behind me. While the picture is barely delicate and noisy due to the low-light situations of the room, it is under no circumstances dangerous. More importantly, the colour is correct and I’m not shrouded in shadows and the constructing exterior the window is seen, not completely blown out by daylight. Try this with nearly every other built-in webcam and also you’d by no means get a picture like this. 

And whereas many laptops will kick on their followers just a few seconds right into a convention name, the Elite Dragonfly stays silent due to how optimized it’s for the duty. Add in sturdy noise cancellation for the built-in mics and clear, clear audio from its top-firing audio system and video calls are literally pleasurable. Plus, there is a bodily privateness shutter on the digicam and a mic mute button on the keyboard for when you do not wish to be seen or heard. 

Close-up view of the HP Elite Dragonfly Chromebook's webcam with its built-in privacy shutter covering the lens.Close-up view of the HP Elite Dragonfly Chromebook's webcam with its built-in privacy shutter covering the lens.

A built-in shutter permits you to rapidly block the webcam.


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Performance to get you thru the day

The Twelfth-gen Intel Core i5 processor is a champ, getting me by means of typical workdays utilizing a mixture of Chrome and progressive internet apps for Microsoft Office and Zoom, Adobe Creative Cloud apps from the Play retailer and the Linux app for Slack. As I discussed earlier that that is the primary VPro Chromebook, but it surely’s an Intel Evo laptop computer, too. The two mixed imply the Dragonfly meets sure requirements for design and efficiency.  

Evo is actually a assure the Chromebook has a thin-and-light physique (it weighs lower than 3 kilos), has all-day battery life (10 hours, 56 minutes on our streaming video check), instant-on efficiency whenever you carry the lid and quick wi-fi. With VPro it provides enhanced safety, specifically complete reminiscence encryption (TME) and KeyLocker. HP additionally included a fingerprint reader on the keyboard deck for extra safety, although I’d moderately have it built-in into the ability button on the left facet of the physique for when the two-in-one is in pill or stand mode.

Haptic touchpad, spill-resistant keyboard, tall show

HP began speaking with Google greater than 4 years in the past about including a haptic touchpad to Chromebooks. Coincidentally, the talks dovetailed with Google’s want to enhance the keyboard and trackpad expertise total for Chromebook customers. The fundamental thought: create a premium gadget with a touchpad so good you will not want to hold round a journey mouse. 

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Downward-looking view of the HP Elite Dragonfly Chromebook's keyboard and touchpad.Downward-looking view of the HP Elite Dragonfly Chromebook's keyboard and touchpad.

The keyboard is comfy and the haptic touchpad is massive and responsive.


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The Elite Dragonfly’s haptic touchpad (one other first for Chromebooks) looks like a conventional click on and never like a vibration you’d get from a cellphone or pill show. Plus you get the identical click on really feel no matter the place you press on the pad. The energy is adjustable however even maxed out it isn’t aggressive. I do want there was some strategy to enhance palm rejection, although, as a result of I repeatedly ended up dragging the cursor on the display whereas typing. 

The haptics work for different ChromeOS actions, providing you with slightly buzz whenever you swap between digital desktops, for instance, or whenever you snap a window to 1 facet of the show. Google additionally has plans to construct out haptic integration into different areas equivalent to Google Workspace apps. Having this touchpad makes the Elite Dragonfly Chromebook that rather more engaging for work.

There’s not a lot to say concerning the backlit keyboard past that it is spacious and cozy to kind on for an prolonged time. I additionally recognize that HP made the perform keys slightly smaller to squeeze in buttons for the keyboard backlight, enjoying/pausing media and muting the mic. 

Pop-up onscreen message for the HP Elite Dragonfly Chromebook's active pen commands.Pop-up onscreen message for the HP Elite Dragonfly Chromebook's active pen commands.

The stylus instruments menu reveals you the battery life for the Elite Dragonfly’s USI pen.


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As I discussed earlier, my Dragonfly included a wonderful USI pen for taking notes or drawing on the show. It wirelessly costs on the proper facet of the Chromebook. It magnetically snaps to the facet and begins charging and it attaches strongly sufficient to retailer that manner. 

The 3:2 show is near the scale of a normal sheet of paper, making it good for note-taking. It’s additionally tall so you’ll be able to match extra vertically on the display for much less scrolling whilst you work. It wasn’t fairly vivid sufficient to make use of outside with out preventing reflections but it surely was manageable. HP does supply a 1,000-nit panel which might be the best way to go for continuously working outside. Plus, it options HP’s privateness display to dam folks from seeing what’s on the show from an off angle. 

Close-up of the ports and buttons on the left side of the HP Elite Dragonfly Chromebook.Close-up of the ports and buttons on the left side of the HP Elite Dragonfly Chromebook.

The Dragonfly Chromebook will be straight related to an exterior show by HDMI or USB-C.


Josh Goldman/CNET

While the show, keyboard and touchpad are wonderful, typically it is simply extra comfy to work on an enormous show and use a full-size keyboard and mouse. The Elite Dragonfly Chromebook has a Thunderbolt 4 port on either side. That means you can’t solely cost from both facet however hook up with a docking station just like the HP Elite Thunderbolt Dock G4 for a single cable connection to all of your peripherals for rapidly attending to work. 

The dock provides an Ethernet port for the Dragonfly for a wired internet connection whereas working at a desk. But the Chromebook has top-flight wi-fi, too, with Wi-Fi 6E in addition to elective 4G LTE and even 5G assist (yet one more first for a Chromebook). 

A Chromebook crystal ball

HP Elite Dragonfly Chromebook open and facing left on a wooded coffee table.HP Elite Dragonfly Chromebook open and facing left on a wooded coffee table.

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Chromebooks have been considerably indistinguishable for a number of years after they first arrived in 2011. But as ChromeOS matured, higher-end Chromebooks began to indicate up extra repeatedly. Although, even these premium fashions topped out at round $500, apart from the occasional showpiece. The HP Elite Dragonfly Chromebook is a showpiece, loaded with a number of design and expertise items that can discover their manner into future Chromebooks for each enterprise and private use. It carries a hefty price ticket that’s seemingly an excessive amount of for most individuals contemplating a Chromebook, even a premium mannequin. But it is also price each penny. 

Still, if it is an excessive amount of, the following finest choices proper now are the Acer Chromebook Spin 714 or the marginally inexpensive Spin 513. You may also take a look at our listing of prime Chromebooks that we have examined. 

The evaluate course of for laptops, desktops, tablets and different computer-like gadgets consists of two components: efficiency testing below managed situations within the CNET Labs and intensive hands-on use by our knowledgeable reviewers. This consists of evaluating a tool’s aesthetics, ergonomics and options. A ultimate evaluate verdict is a mix of each these goal and subjective judgments. 

The listing of benchmarking software program we use modifications over time because the gadgets we check evolve. The most vital core exams we’re at present working on each suitable pc embrace: Primate Labs Geekbench 5, Cinebench R23, PCMark 10 and 3DMark Fire Strike Ultra. 

A extra detailed description of every benchmark and the way we use it may be present in our How We Test Computers web page. 



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