Dell Latitude 7430 vs Latitude 5430: Which one is right for you?
The Dell Latitude lineup includes some of the best and most popular business laptops out there, and there's something for everyone here. Even just within Dell's offerings, there are very different laptops to choose from, so it's important to find the right one for you. We're here to help with that, and in this article, we'll be comparing the Dell Latitude 7430 to the Latitude 5430 to help you pick one of the two.
Right off the bat, these are aimed at slightly different crowds. The Dell Latitude 7430, like the rest of the 7000 series, is more of a premium product (though not quite as premium as the 9000 series), while the Latitude 5430 is more geared towards the mainstream. That means there are some differences in design that may sway you one way or the other. Let's take a closer look.
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Dell Latitude 7430
Dell Latitude 5430
Starting at $1,969 (MSRP)
Starting at $1,419 (MSRP)
One thing to note about these configurations is that some are only available through the normal purchasing pages on Dell's website, while others are only available by going to the advanced configurations page. You may not see them all right away.
Looking at the spec sheet above, you can see that these two laptops share many of the same CPU configurations, however, the Dell Latitude 7430 does have a few options that the Latitude 5430 lacks. Specifically, you can get the Latitude 7430 with Intel's P-series processors, which have a higher TDP, and in tandem, more cores and threads, which can result in faster performance. As an example, here's how an Intel Core i7-1270P compared to a Core i7-1265U in the Geekbench 5 benchmark:
Dell Latitude 7430Intel Core i7-1270P (see test)
Dell Latitude 5430Intel Core i7-1265U (see test)
Geekbench 5 (single-core/multi-core)
1,726 / 9,163
1,778 / 7,462
Benchmarks aren't the end-all-be-all of performance, though, and the actual performance may vary a little because you also have to consider things like thermals. One trend we've seen a lot in 2022 is that many laptops that used to ship with U-series processors (with a 15W TDP) now have P-series processors, without big changes to the design to accommodate the need for better cooling, so performance can throttle under heavy loads.
Another thing to consider is battery life. P-series processors use a lot more power than U-series models, and that means they chew through the battery more quickly. Both the Dell Latitude 7430 and 5430 have up to 58Whr batteries, but if you choose a P-series processor in the former, it won't last as long as it would with a U-series one. Thankfully, you can choose, so this isn't necessarily an advantage for the Latitude 5430 - just for U-series processor in general.
The Dell Latitude 5430 uses slotted RAM, meaning you can upgrade it.
What is a clear advantage for the Dell Latitude 5430 is the upgradeability of the RAM. The Latitude 7430 comes with soldered RAM, so whatever configuration you choose out of the box, that's what you're stuck with. You can choose 8GB, 16GB, or 32GB if you go with a U-series processor, but the P-series models are limited to 16GB, so you lose some freedom there. Meanwhile, the Latitude 5430 can be configured with up to 64GB of RAM, and that RAM uses SODIMM slots. That means you can save some money by buying a cheaper configuration now, then upgrade the RAM later if you want more. Both laptops come with DDR4 RAM, though the P-series models of the Latitude 7430 actually use LPDDR5, which is a potential advantage.
As for storage, both laptops have M.2 SSD storage, and the configurations are similar. The big difference is that you can configure the Latitude 5430 with up to 2TB, while the 7430 caps out a 1TB.
Moving on to the display, the two laptops definitely have some noteworthy differences, but neither of them is all too special. The Dell Latitude 7430 definitely has an advantage, starting with a Full HD (1920 x 1080) display in the base configuration, which should be more than good enough for general office use. If you have money to spend, Dell also offers an Ultra HD (3840 x 2160) option that's incredibly sharp for this size, and it should look great.
The Dell Latitude 5430 is much less impressive in this regard. For starters, the base configuration comes in a measly 1366 x 768 resolution, which is really not ideal for an expensive laptop in 2022. You can upgrade to Full HD and get a similar experience to the Dell Latitude 7430, but that's as far as you can go. There's no Ultra HD or even Quad HD option, so if you want an extra sharp screen, the Dell Latitude 7430 is for you.
Both laptops offer touchscreens as an optional upgrade, but one thing to note is that the Dell Latitude 7430 is also available as a 2-in-1 laptop, so not only does it support it, you can actually use it as a tablet.
Dell has been one of the slower companies when it comes to adopting better webcams, so in both of these laptops, we're looking at a base configuration with a 720p camera. Thankfully, you can upgrade to a 1080p camera and get much better image quality. Most Full HD webcam configurations also include an IR camera for Windows Hello facial recognition, which makes it that much more convenient to unlock your PC. On that note, both laptops also have optional fingerprint readers, if you prefer that.
As for sound, each of the laptops has two speakers powered by Waves MaxxAudio, and dual-array microphones for calls and meetings. These should provide a solid enough experience, but the speakers aren't going to be the most immersive out there.
Being the more premium laptop means the Dell Latitude 7430 has more of an emphasis on design, and that entails a few things. For one thing, it's more compact, measuring 17.27mm in thickness and weighing 2.69lbs for the clamshell model. Even the 2-in-1 variant weighs 2.97lbs, which still makes it slightly lighter than the Latitude 5430.
Indeed, that model starts at 3.01lbs, and it's also noticeably thicker, at 19.3mm. That's an expected trade-off with a cheaper laptop, though, and in this case, you get something in return for that. The extra space in the chassis means the RAM is upgradeable, as we've mentioned, plus you get some extra ports.
The Latitude 7430 comes in aluminum or carbon fiber variants.
As for looks - which are admittedly a bit more suggestive - we'd still give extra points to the Dell Latitude 7430 due to giving you more options. You can choose the aluminum model, which comes in Titan Grey (which is to say silver), or the carbon fiber model that comes in a nearly black colorway. Meanwhile, the Latitude 5430 is only available in aluminum, and it comes in a dark silver shade.
Finally, let's talk about ports, which is something business laptops typically excel at. Both the Dell Latitude 7430 and 5430 have an excellent supply of ports, but being the larger laptop, the Latitude 5430 actually has an advantage here. The Dell latitude 7430 comes with two Thunderbolt 4 (USB-C) ports, one USB Type-A port, HDMI 2.0, a headphone jack, and a microSD card reader. You can also get an optional Smart Card reader built-in.
The Dell Latitude 5430 has a nearly identical setup, but with two extra ports - another USB Type-A port, and RJ45 Ethernet. If you rely on a wired internet connection, this one is a pretty big deal since you won't need any adapters to get more reliable internet.
Beyond the physical ports, there's also wireless connectivity to talk about, and here the Dell Latitude 7430 pulls ahead. Both laptops support Wi-Fi 6E and Bluetooth 5.2, as you'd expect, but the Latitude 7430 has better cellular options. You can choose between 4G LTE or 5G support if you want to be a bit more future-proof, both powered by Qualcomm modems. Meanwhile, the Latitude 5430 only offers 4G LTE, which is powered by an Intel XMM 7360 modem. 5G support isn't a huge advantage in terms of speed, though, so this isn't a necessary upgrade at all.
As with anything, choosing between these two comes down to your personal priorities, but there are clear advantages and disadvantages to each of them. Right off the bat, if you value the 2-in-1 form factor, the Dell Latitude 7430 is your only option. That means you can use it as a laptop or a tablet or in a few different modes for media consumption and browsing the web, so you definitely get a bit more versatility.
The Dell Latitude 7430 also has configurations with faster performance thanks to the P-series processors, an option for a 4K display, and optional 5G support if you want to be on the bleeding edge. It's also a more compact laptop and it comes in two colors to choose from, which is great if you want to choose a look that's more your style.
On the other hand, you might appreciate the Dell Latitude 5430 because it offers upgradeable RAM, which means you can save money now and upgrade later as your budget allows. You can also configure it with more storage out of the box. This one also has more ports, including Ethernet, so it might be a bit more convenient.
One final thing to consider is the price, especially because the Dell Latitude 5430 starts at a considerably lower price than the 7430. These days, you can find both laptops with some discounts, but the Latitude 5430 starts at around $1,400 at writing time, while the Latitude 7430 starts at around $1,679. You get a bit more room for upgrades with the cheaper model.
Regardless of your choice, you can buy either laptop using the links below. Otherwise, consider checking out the best Dell laptops to see some other options that aren't as business-oriented. We also have a list of the best laptops overall if you want to look beyond Dell.
The Dell latitude 7430 is available with 12th-generation Intel Core processors and other top-notch specs for business users.
The Dell Latitude 5430 is a highly configurable business laptop with 12th-gen Intel processors and a premium design.
I've been covering the tech world since 2018, and I love computers, phones, and - above all that - Nintendo videogames, which I'm always happy to talk about.Navigate this article:Operating systemCPUGraphicsDisplayLaptop/clamshell2-in-1StorageRAMIntel P-series:Intel U-series:BatteryPortsAudioCameraWindows HelloConnectivityColorSize (WxDxH)WeightPrice