Dragonflies are a symbol of change, and the HP Dragonfly Pro is aptly named given that fact. The HP Dragonfly Pro is one of the newest editions from the company, and it hits in a lot of different ways. Sporting a 14” touch screen and AMD Ryzen 7 processor, the HP Dragonfly Pro offers you the size and power you need for just about any task. Let’s review the specifics and determine if this laptop is bringing about the right kinds of change.
The make or break moment for just about any purchase is the price point. The HP Dragonfly Pro is costly, for sure. However, it may be worth the price considering what you get under the hood. Also, prices may vary depending on where you purchase the device. The prices listed below are directly from HP’s official store.
32GB memory; 1TB SSD Storage: $1,549.99
16GB memory; 512GB SSD Storage: $1,399.99
The HP Dragonfly Pro comes in Sparkling Black and Ceramic White. Price does not vary depending on color.
Design & Features
The HP Dragonfly Pro weighs 3.42lbs making it fairly lightweight. Its weight makes it the perfect laptop for students and business types on-the-go. It features a matte black aluminum cover with a magnesium base and keyboard frame. I was impressed by the look and feel of this laptop. The surface is sleek and smooth. More importantly, the cover remains clean of stains from fingerprints. There’s something satisfying in watching your prints fade from the surface while in use.
Opening the HP Dragonfly Pro can be done with one hand, but it feels solid. You know you are dealing with an impressive machine upon opening it. The keyboard is pretty, but it’s also one of my sticking points, so more on that later. It offers a fingerprint reader for additional security along with 24/7 support at the touch of a button.
One place this laptop is lacking is in its ports. The HP Dragonfly Pro offers 2 Thunderbolt 3 with USB Type-C 10Gbps signaling rate and 1 USB Type-C 10Gbps signaling rate. While these ports are the present and possible future of tech, you will need additional equipment to connect anything outside of those ports. As a teacher, I use HDMI cables for just about everything. Were I to use the Dragonfly Pro as my primary laptop, I would need additional cords for it to be useful at work. I know there are a lot of us out there who would look at the ports available here and frown.
Keyboard & Touchpad
The only other feature of the HP Dragonfly Pro that makes me sad is the keyboard. While it is pretty to look at, the addition of the special keys can be cumbersome. While typing this review, I have accidentally hit the keys a handful of times. The keyboard is a little off center, and the backspace key is smaller than usual. This leads to me trying to backspace and instead, having a window open up for the myHP app. It’s frustrating and takes some getting used to.
The keys, however, are satisfying to type with due to the lovely click they make when in use. Moreover, the touchpad is smooth. While some may want to turn down the cursor speed, I fell in love with the movement of the cursor and the feel of the pad. A light touch is all you need.
In addition to the keyboard and touchpad, the HP Dragonfly Pro also sports a fluid touch screen. For those seeking to avoid the wonky keyboard and speedy touch pad, you have the fluid touch screen which feels fresh to the touch.
HP advertises the Dragonfly Pro as a competitor to Dell’s XPS 13 plus and the Macbook Pro 14. When testing common performance tasks, the Dragonfly Pro is similar in multi-core to the XPS 13 plus and the original M1 version of the Macbook Pro 14. However, in single-core it lags a little behind. The issue is hiding behind the processor. While the HP Dragonfly Pro sports a 7000 series AMD processor, it is actually a Zen 3 processor which is the architecture from 2022 as opposed to the Zen 4 from this year.
More importantly, if you run these tests multiple times, you will notice there is a drop in rate. This is highly troubling for the performance of the device especially given its price point. Moreover, if you need a lot of CPU performance, this is not the laptop for you as it is unable to sustain a consistent performance for an extended period of time.
For those seeking a strong laptop for school or standard business tasks, the performance drop is barely noticeable. Although, it is a high price point for someone seeking to complete menial tasks such as writing essays or creating a spreadsheet.
Finally, the battery life on this laptop is advertised at 15 hours. I found this to be fairly accurate, give or take an hour. The charger is said to speed up the process, charging 50% in 30 minutes. I also found this to be accurate and useful.
Camera & Speakers
The HP Dragonfly Pro offers HP Quad Speakers and custom tuning. The speakers rest on either side of the keyboard and are of a higher quality. The sound is crisp and clear, but I wouldn’t say I was blown away. They’re of higher quality than a standard laptop, but they should be given the price point. Have you learned my major sticking point with this device?
The camera is impressive. The 5 MP RGB-IR camera is equipped with an electronic shutter and integrated wide-range microphone array. There is one front-facing camera and 1 world-face for conference mode. I may be easily impressed, but I found the quality and clarity of this laptop’s camera to be among some of the best I’ve used. The colors pop and remain crisp throughout use.
While it may not seem like it, I am a fan of the HP Dragonfly Pro. It’s a fairly powerful laptop for those looking to complete standard activities. However, if you are looking for a beastly machine with consistent performance, you may want to look elsewhere. The price of this laptop will cause many eyes to go wide. It’s the price point in particular that gives me pause with this machine.
It’s just as pricey as some of the leading machines but doesn’t perform as highly or as consistently as the others. I’m not disappointed with the Dragonfly Pro nor do I believe it’s not as good as its competitors. I simply believe that, for the price, you might be better served looking elsewhere.
All in all, the HP Dragonfly Pro is a beautiful device with a fair amount of power. However, it’s wonky keyboard, lack of ports and inconsistent performance make it the wrong kind of change for the price.
Is It Hardcore?
The HP Dragonfly Pro is a beautiful machine with plenty of power. However, its performance inconsistency and wonky keyboard may make it not worth the price.