Feeds
80%

Dell Latitude E6400 14in business laptop

Dredd-ful new design?

Top 5 reasons to deploy VMware with Tegile

The Latitude's work surface is no less busy than the rest of the machine. The keys fit comfortably between a pair of MacBook Pro-style speaker grilles at the sides; three volume keys and a bar of blue status lights above; and, below it, three thumbable keys that go with the joystick control.

Dell Latitude E6400

Three-button trackpad - and a joystick

Don't like joysticks? There's a trackpad too, complete with left and right keys and scroll zones. Tucked below the right speaker grille is a fingerprint reader, security fans, and there's a contactless smart-card reader built into the right wrist-rest area.

Back to the keyboard, and while it's not particularly offensive, we weren't keen on the smooth surface of the keys. The travel's good, but the keyboard as a whole does flex, which we don't like at all.

That said, a plus point is the keyboard backlight. We love this MacBook Pro feature, and it's really good to see it make its way at last into the PC world. Anyone who uses their notebook in a darkened lecture hall, or in generally dim lighting conditions, will appreciate this. The only flaw: the light's on or off - you can't adjust its brightness.

Despite the forbidding, old-stoney-face styling, we have to say the E6400 doesn't look bad. This is no bland business box. The body of the machine has a solid, rugged feel - only the wrist-rest area rings hollow when tapped.

Dell E6400

Fingerprint protection

The screen hinges latch onto the display from the back and are fairly stiff so you're as likely to steer the laptop toward you as close the screen if you pull it from the top. Unlike the lower half of the laptop, the lid lacks rigidity. It doesn't bend like the Toshiba Portégé R500's does, but it's thin and has a plasticky feel that's at odds with the solid feel of the keyboard section.

Remote control for virtualized desktops

More from The Register

next story
PEAK APPLE: iOS 8 is least popular Cupertino mobile OS in all of HUMAN HISTORY
'Nerd release' finally staggers past 50 per cent adoption
Tim Cook: The classic iPod HAD TO DIE, and this is WHY
Apple, er, couldn’t get parts for HDD models
Apple spent just ONE DOLLAR beefing up the latest iPad Air 2
New iPads look a lot like the old one. There's a reason for that
Google Glassholes are UNDATEABLE – HP exec
You need an emotional connection, says touchy-feely MD... We can do that
Microsoft fitness bands slapped on wrists: All YOUR HEALTH DATA are BELONG TO US
Wearable will deliver 'actionable insights for healthier living'
Lawyers mobilise angry mob against Apple over alleged 2011 Macbook Pro crapness
We suffered 'random bouts of graphical distortion' - fanbois
Caterham Seven 160 review: The Raspberry Pi of motoring
Back to driving's basics with a joyously legal high
Back to the ... drawing board: 'Hoverboard' will disappoint Marty McFly wannabes
Buzzing board (and some future apps) leave a lot to be desired
prev story

Whitepapers

Why cloud backup?
Combining the latest advancements in disk-based backup with secure, integrated, cloud technologies offer organizations fast and assured recovery of their critical enterprise data.
Getting started with customer-focused identity management
Learn why identity is a fundamental requirement to digital growth, and how without it there is no way to identify and engage customers in a meaningful way.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
New hybrid storage solutions
Tackling data challenges through emerging hybrid storage solutions that enable optimum database performance whilst managing costs and increasingly large data stores.
Mitigating web security risk with SSL certificates
Web-based systems are essential tools for running business processes and delivering services to customers.