Dell Latitude 9420 2-in-1 is two leaps forward and one small step back
The 2021 Latitude 9420 2-in-1 directly succeeds the 2020 Latitude 9410 2-in-1 with both new looks and new processors. It's a significant upgrade in several ways, but it's not exactly a home run either as there are a couple of smaller aspects where the newer model is actually worse.
First, the positives. Dell's newer model utilizes Intel 11th gen Tiger Lake-U CPUs instead of 10th gen Comet Lake-U for enormous performance benefits. Multi-thread and integrated graphics performance are up 60 percent and 300 percent, respectively, to be powerful enough for popular multiplayer titles like DOTA 2 or Fortnite. Secondly, Dell has shifted the series to the increasingly popular 16:10 form factor instead of the usual 16:9. The squarer aspect ratio is taller and arguably more desirable for office-type workloads and word processing where the added height can be invaluable. And last but not least, the system integrates an automatic webcam shutter which was inconspicuously missing on last year's model.
The newer design comes with a few notable downgrades. Battery capacity in particular has been cut from 78 Wh to 60 Wh and so runtimes have been reduced by several hours in our tests. Owners will get fewer USB-A ports, no more dedicated PgUp and PgDn keys, and no more support for full-length M.2 2280 SSDs.
The list of benefits far outweigh the negatives in our opinion especially since the newer model carries both significantly faster processors and a brighter, higher resolution touchscreen that can make all the difference to most users. See our review on the Latitude 9420 2-in-1 for our full take on the convertible.