When approaching the Dell Latitude 7330 Rugged Extreme, it’s best to set your mind back a decade or two.
This isn’t a laptop obsessed with makers of thin bezels and thicknesses of millimeters down to two decimal places — this laptop has become a powerful one to take pride in — but more so that uses ideas that have long fallen out of popularity with laptops, such as hot-swappable batteries, the ability to Customers replace some parts by themselves.
Of course, the first thing one notices with this laptop is its power. It’s rated at IP65, meaning it should be dust-tight and able to handle low pressure water jets. Dell claims to have “maximum protection against ingress of dust, dirt and water,” however, the IP code has five higher levels of water protection. The company also states that the laptop can handle temperatures from “-20°F to 145°F,” which for the rest of the world means roughly -29°C to just 63°C, and drops from 6 feet, or 1.8 metres.
That low extreme temperature leaves no lingering questions about how it handles environments like the Western Australian Mine while exposed to an hour of direct sunlight in the middle of summer.
- Hot swappable batteries
- Screws and some replaceable parts
You do not like
- Too pricey
- The pen cannot be taken out
- Durability comes with weight
Thanks to its being dust-tight, the ports on this laptop are hidden behind seven lockable doors. Behind these doors is a smart card reader, microSD card reader, SIM slot to power 5G mobile connectivity, 2 Thunderbolt 4 ports, 3 USB-A ports, a headphone jack, an RS-232 serial port, an HDMI port, and a port RJ45 port.
The laptop also has a stylus to use on its touch screen, which is supposed to pop up when pressed, but in my whole life I couldn’t get this piece out of its cover. This is probably a good thing as I’m more likely to use the functionality that allows the touch screen to be used with gloves rather than using a stylus in case of rage.
Another immediately noticeable part of this laptop is the handle – it’s a work device and can be carried as a work device.
Most impressive in the modern era when laptop users don’t mean to separate things are the screws littering the outside of the laptop and a pair of interchangeable batteries during operation – the idea of taking out six packs of batteries on site is far more appealing than having to find A power outlet in the middle of nowhere.
Once you notice a few Phillips head screws, this is clearly a laptop that owners can actually fix themselves – as long as you have a Torx T8 screwdriver, a plastic starter and a 5.5mm wrench. Dell has a large number of instructions for replacing components in its manual.
Replacing an SSD is as simple as opening a slot on the back, removing a couple of screws, and dropping the new SSD before reversing the extraction. Users can also remove and replace the port doors, knob, keyboard, touchpad, back cover, card reader, fan, heat sink, and other motherboard components such as the Wi-Fi card, speakers, and GPS board, as well as the motherboard itself, and even the display.
Good luck any time you see these types of instructions arrive with your next Macbook or Surface.
That’s how laptops used to be, a hefty 2.32kg package on the chunkier side, with plenty of bezels, and the ability to replace many, many parts of the laptop yourself.
It’s kind of nostalgic full of 11th generation Intel Silicon, support for up to 32GB of memory, 2TB of storage, and 5G connectivity.
However, once a device is equipped with the highest specs, like this review unit, the recommended retail price of this device is approximately $9,500. There is a very good reason why there is an “invite pricing” tag on the Australian Dell website rather than a dollar number.
Scratch the record, and be in the disappointment that the near 10g machine has only one Full HD screen option, albeit with increased outdoor viewing potential.
This is a wonderful machine that is positively charming for those who remember when companies released desktop computers as standard. From its design, features, sticker price, and gate management behind Dell’s sales team in certain places, it’s clear this isn’t a consumer device. And if Dell’s stringent durability claims don’t hold up, for that price, you can guarantee that IT managers will scream bloody murder at their local salesperson.