Dell Precision M6400 Covet review

Delivering a workstation in a mobile form in no easy task, but the Dell Precision M6400 is a near perfect example of how to do it right.

Don't look away yet, though, as there's more to drool over. The touchpad - as well as being sensitive, accurate, and boasting a set of buttons as comfortable as we've ever come across on any laptop - is backlit. Tap a small logo in its bottom left corner and it glows to life, with four customisable "buttons" along the top, and a timeline scrollbar along the bottom - ideal for video editing.

Elsewhere, there's a fingerprint reader, dual-band draft-n wireless in the shape of Intel's Wi-Fi Link 5300 chipset, Bluetooth, and a very good selection of connections arrayed around its edges. On the left there's a full-size six-pin FireWire port, two USB sockets, a slot-loading DVD writer, 8-in-1 memory card slot, smartcard reader and PC Card reader. On the right you'll find D-SUB and DisplayPort outputs, Gigabit Ethernet, ExpressCard/54, one USB port that will supply charge while the laptop is off, and a powered USB/eSATA combo port. To the right of the touchpad on the wristrest is also a touchless smartcard sensor.

This is an absolute beast of a laptop, make no mistake, whose only real weak spot is its battery life; despite its whopping nine-cell battery it lasted just 2hrs 15mins in our light use test. But this is no ultraportable, designed instead to be moved from base to base, rather than used intensively while out on-the-road, so it's not a deal breaker.

It's not particularly cheap, and neither can it boast the whizz-bang toys of the Lenovo W700ds. But if your company is in the market for a serious mobile workstation and money's no object this machine is the one to beat. It's incredibly fast, beautifully built and makes a statement like no other laptop in its category.

Verdict

Beautifully built, incredibly fast and stuffed with features, the Dell Precision M6400 Covet is a real thoroughbred among workstation laptops. If you’re after a serious mobile workstation, then this has to be top of your shortlist.

Processor: Intel Core 2 Duo 2.53GHz

Memory: 8GB 800MHz DDR2 RAM

Storage: 320GB Western Digital hard disk, DVD writer

Graphics: Nvidia Quadro FX 3700M; D-SUB; DisplayPort

Ports: 4 x USB; FireWire, eSATA

Security: TPM 1.2; Kensington Lock slot

Connectivity: Gigabit Ethernet

Accessories: wired keyboard and mouse

OS: Windows Vista

Warranty: 3yr on-site

Dimensions: 393 x 287 x 42mm (WDH)

Weight 4.34kg

Featured Resources

Preparing for AI-enabled cyber attacks

MIT technology review insights

Download now

Cloud storage performance analysis

Storage performance and value of the IONOS cloud Compute Engine

Download now

The Forrester Wave: Top security analytics platforms

The 11 providers that matter most and how they stack up

Download now

Harness data to reinvent your organisation

Build a data strategy for the next wave of cloud innovation

Download now

Recommended

Dell stops gaming PC shipments to some US states after breaching energy efficiency laws
Hardware

Dell stops gaming PC shipments to some US states after breaching energy efficiency laws

29 Jul 2021
Secure Boot flaws could enable hackers to take control of Dell devices
vulnerability

Secure Boot flaws could enable hackers to take control of Dell devices

24 Jun 2021
Spotlight: The state of the UK & Ireland mid-sized business and IT today 2021
Whitepaper

Spotlight: The state of the UK & Ireland mid-sized business and IT today 2021

8 Jun 2021
Medium business IT survey highlights
Whitepaper

Medium business IT survey highlights

8 Jun 2021

Most Popular

Samsung Galaxy S21 5G review: A rose-tinted experience
Mobile Phones

Samsung Galaxy S21 5G review: A rose-tinted experience

14 Jul 2021
RMIT to be first Australian university to implement AWS supercomputing facility
high-performance computing (HPC)

RMIT to be first Australian university to implement AWS supercomputing facility

28 Jul 2021
Zyxel USG Flex 200 review: A timely and effective solution
Security

Zyxel USG Flex 200 review: A timely and effective solution

28 Jul 2021