Hi am Abrar and this is my full review of the HP Dragonfly G4 2023 it has a stunning 13.5-inch display, I’ve opted for the full HD 1920×1280 resolution, although the 3K 2K OLED option at 3000 by 2000 is equally enticing. The OLED variant offers impressive visuals, prioritizing battery life, I’ve equipped Dragonfly G4 with the optional 5G, a valuable feature for events and travel. It’s also has lightweight and slim profile, is exceptionally portable, seamlessly fitting into your bag. In this review, we’ll going to deep dive into design, keyboard, user upgradeability, performance and battery life with my final thought is it worth?
HP Dragonfly G4: Specifications and Price
|Display||13.5-inch diagonal Brightview WLED UWVA WUXGA+ (1920×1280), Low Blue Light, 400 Nits|
|CPU||Intel core i7-1365U|
|Graphics||Integrated intel Iris Xe graphics|
|Memory||16GB LPDDDR5 RAM (Max 32GB)|
|Storage||Up to 2TB PCIe-4×4 NVMe SSD|
|Connectivity||Intel Wi-Fi 6E AX2.11 (2×2)|
Bluetooth 5.3 wireless card,
Intel XMM 7560 R+ LTE-Advanced Pro,
Cat 16 WWAN Broadband Wireless,
intel 5G Solution 5000 WWAN Broadband Wireless,
|Speakers||Quad stereo speakers, Audio by Bang & Olufsen|
|Ports||2x thunderbolt 4 with USB Type-C 40GBps speed, 1x USB-A, 1x HDMI 2.1, 1x stereo headphone/microphone combo jack|
|Camera||5MP 88″ field view IR.|
HP Dragonfly G4: Unboxing and Design
Inside the box we get the Laptop Dragonfly G4 2023 It feels pretty good, good premium design. We’ve got some warranty information, a power cord, 65-watt USB Type-C power adaptor. Now, I love these Type-C cables or adapters.
Now, as far as design and build quality Dragonfly G14 is made from 90% recycled magnesium, magnesium will give you that super lightweight material that you’ll need to make it very portable, but there will be a little give and flex in the chassis, just the nature of magnesium. Again, it’s an alloy, but it does have a little bit of flex, But this doesn’t have a cheap feel in any way. HP Dragonfly G4 2023 is a very premium feeling device, there’s no doubt about it.
Now, the starting weight is one kilogram or 2.2 pounds according to HP, The review unit that I have with a few extra features brings it up to 1.153 kilograms or 2.54 pounds.
HP Dragonfly G4: Ports and Connectivity
The ports on the left side, we get an HDMI 2.1, SIM tray for the optional mobile broadband, and a USB Type-C Thunderbolt 4 port. I love the fact that they’re going to split these up on each side of each other; that’s been pretty good.
And over the right side is a Kensington Lockport, a second USB Type-C Thunderbolt 4 port, a USB Type-A port, and 3.5-millimeter microphone/headphone combo jack port. All in all, Dragonfly G4 have pretty nice port selection for an ultra-portable but notably there’s no SD card reader port.
HP Dragonfly G4: Keyboard and Touchpad
You can open the lid with one finger, and the screen goes back 180 degrees, allowing you to get a really nice viewing angle. So that’s been pretty good for those wondering, and the hinges are on pretty nice and tight. I didn’t see a lot of screen wobble when typing, so that’s been pretty good.
Now, as far as the keyboard itself, I’ve always been a big fan of the Dragonfly keyboards, I like the tactility; I like the feedback, and this is no exception. The feedback has been very good, and typing out long documents and emails has worked out well with this really nicely designed keyboard. And as far as the backlight is concerned, it’s a multi-stage backlight, allowing you to get work done in a dark room or a dimly lit environment.
And there’s good contrast between the white LED backlight and the dark keys; no trouble seeing them. And that is a really nice glass Precision touchpad, very responsive when it comes to scrolling, doing all the gestures. Now, it’s not a haptic touchpad; it’s a traditional-style touchpad, but a very good touchpad nonetheless, a nice implementation on dragonfly G4.
HP Dragonfly G4: User Upgradeability
HP makes it super easy to get inside Dragonfly G4, just loosen the four T5 Torx screws; they’re captive, and that’s it, Pry off the bottom plate and you’re in. Once inside, you’ll notice the two fans for cooling, and 68-watt-hour battery. The one thing that is upgradable is to be M.2 SSD, and that, of course, gets some excellent reads and writes, as you can see above table. The one included with my review unit has some fast reads and writes, so that’s been pretty good.
|All||Readd (MB/s)||Write (MB/s)|
Like most ultraportables in 2023, the RAM is soldered into the motherboard, not upgradable by the user. My review G4 has 16 gigabytes of DDR5 4800 megahertz RAM running in Quad Channel, and you can configure dragonfly G4 with up to 32 gigabytes of RAM, So for those that need that extra RAM, you have an option; that’s good.
Now, when it comes to wireless, it has Wi-Fi 6E Bluetooth 5.3, that combo card is soldered into the motherboard, also not upgradable by the user. But the good news is the Wi-Fi and the Bluetooth have been working flawlessly, no issues on either front, and you have the optional mobile broadband. You can get it with either LTE or with a 5G modem; those are the two options. You’re going to pay extra for it, but for the mobile road warrior, it just might be worth it having that always-on, secure connection, not having to rely on Wi-Fi at an airport or your mobile phone for hotspot. That’s been pretty good, having an independent connection, at least for getting work done.
HP Dragonfly G4: Display and Audio
Now, you have a few options when HP Dragonfly G4 comes to the display, and the high-end option would be the OLED offering in a 3K 2K resolution, that’s 3000 by 2000. That’s if you want the color accuracy, if you want the high resolution, and of course, the excellent coverage of the color gamut. I have the non-touch full HD, 1920 by 1280. Now, these all have a 3:2 aspect ratio, and that means you’re going to see more on the display, you do less scrolling when it comes to web browsing, and it also has a low blue light filter, helping reduce the chances of eye strain; that’s been pretty good.
Now, as far as Dragonfly G4 display itself that I have, it’s a 60-hertz display, no option for high refresh rate. Although I don’t think a business user is going to focus on the refresh rate, I think 60 hertz is going to maximize the battery life, and that’s what a business user is going to need. When it comes to brightness, they’re claiming 400 nits; I’ve gotten a measurement of 398 nits, very close and very bright, so that’s been pretty good. It is a glossy display, and depending on your lighting conditions, you will notice some glare and reflections, something to keep in mind, It’s got good coverage of the color gamut, not great.
On HP Dragonfly G4 you’ve got really good color accuracy, good contrast, very good black levels, good white point, and I didn’t detect any PWM or pulse width modulation, or otherwise known as screen flickering, in my testing, so that’s been pretty good. With that 3:2 aspect ratio, it means that when you’re consuming media that has been made for a 16:9 display, you’re going to see black bars on the top and bottom when consuming media. Not a big deal, but I wanted to point that out. And my overall takeaway is this is an excellent display which maximizes the battery life but doesn’t skimp on giving you a very good display.
About the audio, and the Dragonfly line has traditionally been very good when it comes to audio, which is a little bit unusual when you think about an ultra-portable business-class laptop. Well, this has some really good speakers; they’re quad speakers, they’re Bang & Olufsen tuned, and I thought the volume was good, the mids were decent, and there was some bass. Overall, nice rich sound.
5MP IR Webcam, Mics and Multi-Camera
HP Dragonfly G4 have a 5.8-megapixel HP camera that does 1440p video. It’s an IR camera, which means you can log in with face recognition with Windows Hello and also there is a camera shutter button or dedicated key, I should say, on the keyboard, giving you more security and privacy for those wondering.
It does have a lot of those effects: background blur, auto frame, gaming auto lighting, all that stuff, all that jazz. You can change the background, you can put your own background, so there are a lot of things you can do with G4 webcam, and I think that gives you a lot of options. One of the best background blur effects I’ve seen so far in a camera, and like I’ve said, HP has really been killing the camera game, doing a fantastic job, and this is no exception, just another iteration of what they’ve been doing.
HP Dragonfly G4: Performance and Gaming
|GEEKBENCH 6 (Single-Core)||2,522|
|GEEKBENCH 6 (Multi-Core)||9,332|
|CINEBENCH R15||1,344 CB | 93.35 FPS|
|CINEBENCH R23||1,893 Single Core, 7,554 Multi-core|
|3DMARK Fire Strike||4,755|
|3DMARK Time Spy||1,739|
As for the performance, HP Dragonfly G4 2023 is running Intel’s 13th-gen processor, the Core i7-1365U, that’s a 15-watt CPU with 10 cores, that’s eight efficient cores and two performance cores. As you can see above benchmark results, good single-core and decent multi-core performance, although I’ve seen higher multi-core performance on other laptops running the same chipset, so just keep that in mind. G4 has integrated Iris XE Graphics, which are, of course, in need of a dire refresh as it’s getting a little bit long in the tooth, But doing everyday tasks such as Microsoft Office, email, web browsing all work really well on this productivity laptop.
|The Witcher 3||79 FPS||54 FPS||30 FPS||14 FPS|
|GTA V||99 FPS||84 FPS||23 FPS||10 FPS|
|Dota 2 reborn||101 FPS||76 FPS||23 FPS||10 FPS|
|Cyberpunk 2077||20 FPS||16 FPS||12 FPS||9 FPS|
On Dragonfly G4 you could do light video editing in 1080p, I wouldn’t do any 4K video editing if you can avoid it; it’s better to use something with a discrete GPU. And I think it goes without saying this is not a gaming laptop, of course, but if you lower some of the settings, you can get some playable frame rates on some of the more popular titles. Don’t expect to be playing AAA titles on their highest settings; it’s just not in the cards with this laptop. But the occasional game and there on your downtime is certainly doable on G4 ultraportable laptop.
HP Dragonfly G4: Surface Temperatures
Well, you’re probably wondering, thin and light, will this thermal throttle? Well Dragonfly G4 got a passing score of 98.3 percent on the Time Spy stress test, indicating little, if any, thermal throttling was detected under heavy load. That’s really good. And when G4 comes to the surface temperatures, although there were a couple of hot spots above the keyboard below the display, not where you’re going to be placing your fingers. So that’s a good spot if it’s going to get a little bit hot or warm there; that’s the place you want it. On the underside, never reaching above 49 degrees Celsius, so very good, never too hot to the touch. It won’t burn your skin, They’ve kept it relatively cool.
As far as fan noise, reaching as high as 45 decibels, Not very loud, but definitely noticeable. And when you’re in the balance mode, not very audible, hardly kicks in, So that’s been pretty good when you’re doing everyday tasks.
HP Dragonfly G4: Battery Life
|HP Dragonfly G4|
68Wh, core i7-1365U
|15 hours 12 minutes||12 hours 04 minutes|
|ThinkPad X1 Carbon Gen 11|
57Wh, Core i7-1355U
|11 hours 41 minutes||14 hours 04 minutes|
Its great longevity when it comes to battery life, Yes, the HP Dragonfly G4 sports a 68 watt-hour battery, and it did 15 hours and 12 minutes on the PCMark 10 Modern Office battery test. To put it into context, the ThinkPad X1 Carbon Gen 11 that I recently reviewed did 11 hours and 41 minutes on that same test. And when you compare it to the Dell Latitude 9442, that one did 12 hours and 45 minutes, versus the Dragonfly G4, which did again the 15 hours and 12 minutes. And you’re seeing very good video playback results as well, comparable to the others in this category.
This is a good category when it comes to longevity, business-focused laptops that will give you all-day battery life, and the Dragonfly G4 will not disappoint you. It’s excellent when it comes to battery life, and it takes about 90 minutes to give you a full charge with the included 65-watt USB Type-C charging adapter.
My Final Thought
What do I think about the HP Dragonfly G4 2023? I think if you’re coming from a Dragonfly G3 from last year, I don’t see a big reason to update unless you have a need to go from the 12th gen to the 13th gen in terms of that performance bump. But as far as everything else, it’s pretty much relatively the same here in 2023. So if you already have the G3, I think you’re okay. I don’t think it’s a necessary update unless, again, you want that performance boost that the 13th gen gives you.
Now, having said that, I like the display options. The OLED option at the top of the line there is a nice one, especially for those that need that extra pixel count. That will certainly get the job done. Stays cool under heavy load; I didn’t detect throttling under heavy load, that’s really good. Stayed relatively quiet, although I did notice a little bit of that fan noise under maximum load. It’s got an excellent keyboard and touchpad, really good battery life, and it’s got a really nice high-res 5-megapixel camera. And you also have the most multi-camera features that HP gives you; that’s a really nice leg up on G4 2023.
Now, as far as the negatives: no high refresh rate option, of course, not a big deal for a business-focused laptop. Noticeable fan noise under heavy load, but not all the time, just when you’re really pushing it. No SD card reader, would have been nice. And of course, like most ultra-portables here in 2023, the RAM is soldered into the motherboard, not user-upgradable. But there’s a lot to like here, ladies and gentlemen, especially if you’re coming from an older version of the Dragonfly, coming from a different brand, and you want to try out the Dragonfly line, one of the best in the business when it comes to business laptops, especially ultra-portables. The HP Dragonfly G4 2023 will not disappoint, I highly recommend it.
The HP Dragonfly G4 impresses with its sleek design, vibrant display options, and exceptional battery life. While lacking some features like a high-refresh-rate display, it stands out as an excellent choice for business professionals seeking a powerful and portable laptop in 2023.
Thermals / Fan Noise9