Dell Latitude E6400 XFR review

Great protection, staggering performance and decent usability

Dell Latitude E6400 XFR
The Dell Latitude E6400 XFR can be used at -29 degrees - if you feel inclined to do so

TechRadar Verdict

If you need your laptop to be protected from the elements then the Dell XFR will suit you well. However, for the general commuter we can't help feel it is overkill. Cool overkill, but still overkill


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    Well ruggedised

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    Good performance

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Dell is one of the world's best known laptop manufacturers and makes a broad range of machines for both business and consumer markets. The Latitude E6400 XFR is a fully-ruggedised laptop that offers comprehensive protection for your data, and is the ideal travel partner to take with you to the ends of the world.

Dell has gone to extraordinary lengths to ruggedise this laptop. Its exclusive Ballistic Armor Protection system is the first line of defence. It utilises a chassis metal called PR-481 which ensures that the laptop can be dropped from a height of three feet, while the screen is open and operating, and it will still continue to work.

The laptop also boasts an Ingress Protection rating of 65 - the same as the Getac B300. This gives complete protection against dust and also low pressure jets of water (from all directions), making it suitable for working in both the desert and heavy rain.

Super cool

The laptop is also designed to keep working in extreme temperatures, with a range that is highly impressive – from as hot as 63˚C and as cold as -29˚C. The zinc lid hinge and aluminium lid latch are both very tough, and all the various port covers feature oversized catches, which make them very easy to use, even when wearing thick gloves.

The 14.1-inch screen is bright and crisp. It features a technology which makes the panel easy to read in bright light, and also boasts intuitive touchscreen functionality which successfully enhances the overall user experience.

Dell build

The backlit keyboard makes for a good typing experience and features a robust rubber pointing stick alongside the touchpad and mouse buttons fitted below.

Great performer

Performance is exceptional thanks to the dual-core Intel processor and this is the fastest rugged laptop we've seen to date. You will certainly have no problems running office applications, such as spreadsheets, and even more resource-intensive applications run quickly and efficiently.

The 128GB Solid State Drive – and therefore your data – is not only protected by the external casing, but is positioned in a cage surrounded by shock-absorbing materials. The cage is also built to dampen shock and dissipate thermal energy.

Portability isn't as good as the Getac here and the 263-minute battery life will mean you have limited time in the field without purchasing extra batteries. It's also quite a heavy machine, clocking in at just over 4Kg.

It's impossible not to be impressed by the E6400 XFR, however, and if you want to give your data the best chance of survival in extreme conditions, few laptops are better.

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