Dynabook's new featherlight business laptop may challenge the best from Lenovo, Dell

Dynabook Portégé X40L-M
(Image credit: Dynabook)

The Portégé X40L-M marks Dynabook's latest attempt to recapture the business laptop market. The ultralight business laptop has been updated with the latest Intel Core Ultra processors, Intel Evo platform certification, a 65Wh (watt-hour) battery, a 14-inch WUXGA anti-glare display, Windows 11 Pro, and Microsoft Copilot integration.

Dynabook is targeting some heavy hitters in the business laptop market, including the Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon Gen 12, Dell Latitude 7440 Ultralight, the HP EliteBook 1040 Gen 10, and EliteBook 1040 Gen 11 as competitors. This helps make their tentative $1,799 starting MSRP easier to swallow.

By the numbers

Dynabook Portégé X40L-M

(Image credit: Dynabook)

The ThinkPad X1 Carbon Gen 12 and the new Portégé X40L-M are the only members of this quartet of business laptops with an Intel Ultra chipset on board. Of course, Dell has updated the Latitude to include an Intel Ultra CPU but that laptop is the Latitude 7450 and not last year's Latitude 7440.

While you can still purchase the Latitude 7440, it is being phased out by Dell. So it happens to be on sale right now, but the original MSRP was $1,759, exactly the same as the Latitude 7450. It's worth noting that the Latitude 7450 starts with an Intel Core Ultra 5 135U ultra-low power processor compared to the Portégé's Ultra 5 135H high-performance processor. The only configuration option on the Latitude 7450 with an Intel H-series processor will set you back a cool $2,199 for the Ultra 7 165H.

The HP EliteBook 1040 Gen 10 starts at $1,799 though it's also on promotion as of press time. Notably, the EliteBook 1040 has yet to be updated for the Intel Core Ultra series processors, so it is built with 13th Intel chipsets. There is a pretty sizeable performance and efficiency gap between the 13th-generation Intel chips and the new Ultra processors, so you are giving up a lot at the same price point. The HP EliteBook 1040 Gen 11 is not officially available yet, but it almost certainly will feature Intel Core Ultra processors. Pricing for the EliteBook 1040 Gen 11 is also unknown at this time.

The Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon Gen 12 pricing is somewhat baffling, as is often the case with Lenovo. While at the time of our review the model we tested was over $3,300, you can now find it for about $1,999 on Amazon, which includes an Intel Core Ultra 7 155H CPU, 32GB of RAM, and a 1TB SSD. We'll have to see how it fares against the Dynabook once we get the latter in for review.

What this means for you

Dynabook Portégé X40L-M

(Image credit: Dynabook)

Most companies don't pay full retail MSRP for these laptops. Even on day one many have a discount, which can often be bundled for companies purchasing a whole fleet of laptops for their employees.

While general consumers can absolutely buy these laptops, they are built for business needs. Dynabook added a 360-degree dual microphone array to the lid of the Portégé X40L-M and adjusted the placement of the mute and volume controls to make the laptop better for video conferencing.

For Dynabook, having a cheaper, more powerful starting configuration is their best bet. Many businesses have partnerships with HP, Dell, or Lenovo already. Dynabook doesn't have the same brand name recognition, even if its roots are with Toshiba. But if you're looking for pure bang for your buck, the Portégé X40L-M seems like a strong contender.

Of course, this is all based purely on price and configuration options. As my many years in the Laptop Mag testing lab taught me, specs are only part of the reason for good laptop performance. So we'll need to wait until we get the Portégé through our testing and review process to be certain, but from a pure number standpoint, the Portégé X40L-M is a bargain.

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Madeline Ricchiuto
Staff Writer

A former lab gremlin for Tom's Guide, Laptop Mag, Tom's Hardware, and Tech Radar; Madeline has escaped the labs to join Laptop Mag as a Staff Writer. With over a decade of experience writing about tech and gaming, she may actually know a thing or two. Sometimes. When she isn't writing about the latest laptops and AI software, Madeline likes to throw herself into the ocean as a PADI scuba diving instructor and underwater photography enthusiast.