HP Dragonfly G4 vs. Dragonfly Folio G3: Which should you buy?

HP’s lineup of Dragonfly laptops is geared toward the professional lifestyle. The Dragonfly G4 was announced at CES 2023 with an expected spring 2023 release, making it the successor to the Elite Dragonfly G3. It’s a sleek and lightweight clamshell notebook with 13th-generation Intel Core mobile CPUs, 13.5-inch displays, extra security features, and a bunch of high-end collaboration tools.


Also in the lineup is the Dragonfly Folio G3, which shares many of the same security and collaboration and security features but has as a pull-forward, convertible design that adds a ton of versatility, especially if you enjoy inking and using your laptop as a tablet. These are two of the best business laptops out there; let’s compare them to help you decide which is right for your needs.

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    Source: HP

    HP Dragonfly G4

    HP’s Dragonfly G4 is expected to launch in spring 2023 with some new collaboration tools, fresh 13th-generation Intel Core processors, and some new power-saving features. It’s the right choice for those who don’t often use a pen for inking or want to travel as light as possible. It might even be a bit more affordable than the Folio G3, though we’re waiting on a firm starting price.

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    Source: HP

    HP Dragonfly Folio G3

    HP’s Dragonfly Folio G3 is a versatile, premium business laptop with a rare, pull-forward design. It’s the right choice if you love inking and want something that will turn heads wherever you go. It brings strong performance, long battery life, and a bunch of high-end touch displays. Just be prepared to pay dearly.


HP Dragonfly G4 vs. Dragonfly Folio G3: Pricing and availability

The HP Dragonfly G4 isn’t expected to launch until spring 2023. We still don’t have a starting price, but we don’t expect it to come cheap. The predecessor, the Elite Dragonfly G3, still starts at about $1,839 before any discounts, and the new Dragonfly G4 will likely be around the same price.

The Dragonfly Folio G3 is available at HP’s official website starting at about $2,379 before any discounts. The introductory model includes an Intel Core i7-1255U processor (CPU), 16GB of RAM, 512GB SSD, and a 13.5-inch FHD+ touch display. Going all-out with a Core i7-1265U vPro CPU, 32GB of RAM, 3K2K OLED display, 1TB SSD, and 5G connectivity costs about $4,810.

HP Dragonfly G4 vs. Dragonfly Folio G3: Specs

Here’s a look at the specs available in each laptop.

HP Dragonfly G4

HP Dragonfly Folio G3

OS

  • Windows 11 Pro
  • Windows 10 Pro
  • FreeDOS

CPU

  • 12th Gen Intel
  • Core i5-1235U
  • Core i5-1245U vPro
  • Core i7-1255U
  • Core i7-1265U vPro

Graphics

  • Intel Iris Xe (integrated)

Display

  • 13.5 inches, 3:2 aspect ratio
  • 1920×1280 (FHD+), 400 nits, touch (optional), anti-glare (optional)
  • 1920×1280 (FHD+), 1000 nits, touch (optional), Sure View Reflect
  • 3000×2000 (3K2K), OLED, 400 nits, touch
  • 13.5 inches, touch, 3:2 aspect ratio
  • 1920×1280 (FHD+), 400 nits, low blue light, glossy or anti-glare
  • 1920×1280 (FHD+), 1000 nits, low blue light, Sure View Reflect
  • 3000×2000 (3K2K), OLED, 400 nits, low blue light, glossy

Storage

  • Up to 2TB M.2 PCIe 4.0 NVMe SSD
  • Standard or encrypted
  • 256GB, 512GB M.2 PCIe 4.0 NVMe self-encrypting SSD
  • 256GB, 512GB, 1TB M.2 PCIe 4.0 NVMe SSD
  • One M.2 slot, upgradeable

Memory

  • Up to 32GB LPDDR5
  • Soldered
  • 16GB, 32GB LPDDR5-6400MHz
  • Dual-channel, soldered

Battery

Ports

  • Two Thunderbolt 4
  • USB-A (5Gbps)
  • HDMI 2.0
  • Nano SIM (optional)
  • 3.5mm audio
  • Two Thunderbolt 4
  • 3.5mm audio
  • Nano SIM (optional)

Audio

  • Quad B&O speakers
  • Discrete audio amplifiers
  • Dual top-edge microphone
  • Quad B&O speakers
  • Discrete amp

Camera

  • 5MP, 88-degree FOV
  • Sure Shutter
  • Front-facing 8MP, 100-degree FOV
  • Camera shutter (software)
  • Human presence detection

Windows Hello

  • IR camera
  • Fingerprint reader

Wireless

  • Wi-Fi 6E
  • Bluetooth 5.3
  • 4G LTE / 5G (optional)
  • Wi-Fi 6E
  • Bluetooth 5.3
  • 4G LTE / 5G (optional)

Color

  • Slate Blue
  • Natural Silver

Dimensions

  • 11.7 x 8.67 x 0.65 inches (297.4mm x 220.4mm x 16.4mm)
  • 11.67 x 9.22 x 0.7 inches (296.4mm x 234mm x 17.8mm)

Weight

Starting price

Design and features: Dragonfly Folio G3 is super unique

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Dragonfly Folio G3

The HP Dragonfly Folio G3 is a convertible laptop unlike other convertible laptops. Instead of having a 360-degree hinge that allows the display to rotate around to become a tablet, the Folio G3’s display pulls forward for what HP calls “Watch” and “Write” modes. It’s a similar design to Microsoft’s Surface Laptop Studio. Pull forward once and the screen’s bottom edge rests between the keyboard and touchpad. Pull forward again, and it sits (almost) flat against the keyboard with a bit of an angle for easier inking.

The Folio G3’s lid and hinges are covered with a faux leather wrap that adds some luxury and an easier grip when carrying the laptop. The extra hinges and wrap do add some weight, so the Folio G3 weighs about a pound more than the Dragonfly G4. Dimensions are otherwise quite close, with a 13.5-inch display in a chassis that’s closer to 12 inches in size. If you’re interested in inking or just want some extra versatility for using your laptop, the Folio G3 should be your first choice.

HP Dragonfly G4 4

HP Dragonfly G4

The Dragonfly G4 hasn’t physically changed much compared to its third-gen predecessor. In his HP Elite Dragonfly G3 review, Editor-in-Chief Rich Woods explains that “it’s stylish, coming in a Slate Blue color, and it’s so easy to carry around at 2.2 pounds.” The Dragonfly G4 is available in the same Slate Blue and Natural Silver colors, with rounded edges that make it more comfortable to hold onto. It’s not a convertible laptop like the Folio G3, but that won’t matter for users who don’t often feel the need to use their laptop as a tablet.

Port selection is more generous on the side of the Dragonfly G4. It has two Thunderbolt 4, USB-A, HDMI 2.0, 3.5mm audio, and an optional Nano SIM slot should you opt for 4G LTE or 5G connectivity. The Dragonfly Folio G3 has just two Thunderbolt 4, a 3.5mm audio jack, and the same optional Nano SIM slot. You’ll be more likely to feel the need for a powerful docking station if you go with the Folio G3; those who prefer living life without dongles or docks should find the Dragonfly G4 to be more accommodating.

The Folio G3’s audio setup is split between four B&O speakers. There are two between the keyboard and display and another two along the bottom front edge of the chassis. This spreads out the sound to keep it unmuffled no matter how you use the laptop, and HP even includes some software to automatically tune the speakers depending on whether the display is pulled forward. The audio sounds quite good, especially for a business laptop. The Dragonfly G4 also has four speakers in a similar orientation, with two between the keyboard and display and another two along the front edge of the laptop. Those who value audio quality will have a great time with either laptop.

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Dragonfly Folio G3

HP has been focusing a lot on the collaboration tools that go into its products. And since the Dragonfly lineup is geared toward professionals, the camera and supporting software are not lacking. These are some of the best laptops for those who work online and by distance. The Dragonfly Folio G3 has an 8MP camera with a 100-degree field-of-view (FOV), as well as automatic backlight and low-light adjustments. Auto-framing, background blur, and an appearance filter are also on board. The Dragonfly G4’s camera isn’t quite as impressive at 5MP and an 88-degree FOV, but it’s still going to make you come through clear and looking your best thanks to the included software. It even has a new Natural Tone feature to make your skin look more lifelike while on camera. Both laptops have IR cameras for biometric logins through Windows Hello, and both have camera shutters for extra privacy. The Dragonfly G4 adds a fingerprint reader for those who prefer it over a facial scan.

Part of the new Dragonfly G4’s allure involves a new multi-camera feature and keystone correction that makes collaboration much easier. You can connect a second camera, train it on a whiteboard or document, and let the software crop and adjust so that the image comes through clearly for your viewers. The software can also detect which camera you’re looking at, keeping you in frame at all times.

HP Dragonfly G4 1

HP Dragonfly G4

As mentioned, both laptops are available with 4G LTE and 5G connectivity. This is totally optional and does add to the cost of the laptop, but it will undoubtedly come in handy if you’re often working outside of Wi-Fi range. You’re otherwise looking at modern Wi-Fi 6E for internet and Bluetooth 5.3 connectivity for your wireless accessories.

Finally, there’s not much to say about the Dragonfly keyboard other than it’s a dream to use. Both laptops have a similar layout with large keycaps and font, perfect spacing, and plenty of travel. I typed thousands of words on the Folio G3 without issue, and the same goes for colleagues who have regularly used the Dragonfly G3 (which has the same keyboard as the G4). The Precision touchpads are enormous and offer accurate pointing.

Display and inking: Mostly similar, except for one thing

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Dragonfly Folio G3

The displays available for these two laptops are quite similar. The only difference is that the Folio G3 comes only with touch functionality due to its convertible design. The Dragonfly G4 gives you the touch option for the FHD+ displays, while the OLED 3K2K screen is touch-enabled no matter what. All screens have a tall 3:2 aspect ratio and a 13.5-inch size.

The most affordable option has a 1920×1280 (FHD+) resolution, 400 nits brightness, and an anti-glare or glossy finish (depending on whether you go with touch on the Dragonfly G4). There’s also an FHD+ screen with HP’s Sure View privacy technology that cuts down on viewing angles to keep your data safe while working in public. It hits 1,000 nits to go along with the privacy tech. And finally, the big upgrade has a 3000×2000 (3K2K) resolution, an OLED touch panel, and 400 nits brightness. This will deliver the best color accuracy and contrast, but it also costs the most.

These are great screens to work on thanks to the extra pixels from the 3:2 aspect ratio. In my HP Dragonfly Folio G3 review, I tested the FHD+ screen for color accuracy; it hit 100% sRGB, 76% AdobeRGB, and 79% DCI-P3. That only gets better with the OLED screen. The Folio G3 also comes with a full-size active pen for inking. It’s great for taking notes or sketching diagrams, and there’s a magnetic anchor on the side of the laptop for storage when not in use.

Performance and battery: 13th vs 12th-generation processors

HP Dragonfly G4 3

HP Dragonfly G4

The Dragonfly G4 was recently announced, and we’ve yet to test its performance first-hand. We do know that it will be using Intel’s latest 13th-generation mobile processors, which should provide a bump in performance compared to the Dragonfly G3’s last-gen hardware. HP has also documented that you’ll be able to get up to a 2TB M.2 PCIe 4.0 NVMe SSD and up to 32GB of LPDDR5 RAM. Looking back at the older Dragonfly G3, the 12th-generation Intel U-series CPUs delivered snappy performance and battery life that could go for a full workday without needing a charge. The Dragonfly G4 also comes with a new Smart Sense feature that helps balance heat and power across workloads. It can even learn your work patterns to better preserve battery life when the laptop is idling or asleep.

The Dragonfly Folio G3 is available with 12th-generation Intel Core U-series CPUs, up to a 1TB M.2 PCIe 4.0 NVMe SSD, and up to 32GB of LPDDR5 RAM. The 53Wh battery lasted between seven and eight hours on a charge in our testing, though that will no doubt change if you opt for the OLED display and 5G connectivity.

If we’re comparing benchmark numbers, the Elite Dragonfly G3 with Core i7-1265U CPU hit a 5,094 PCMark 10 score, 1,713 single-core Geekbench 5 (GB5) score, and 7,284 multi-core GB5 score. The Dragonfly Folio G3 with Core i7-1265U hit a 5,450 PCMark 10 score, as well as 1,704 and 8,189 single- and multi-core GB5 scores. Performance is similar if not leaning favorably toward the Folio G3, but the new 13th Gen Intel chips coming with the Dragonfly G4 should put it ahead in terms of available power. This is unlikely going to be the deciding factor, as both laptops will be able to crush a day’s work with ease.

HP Dragonfly G4 vs. Dragonfly Folio G3: Which HP laptop is right for you?

Choosing between these two laptops will likely come down to whether or not you think you’ll use the Dragonfly Folio G3’s pull-forward design enough to warrant the price and extra weight. It’s undeniably fun to use, but if you don’t often use an active pen or feel the need to set your display forward like a tent, the Dragonfly G4 should be a better choice. The new collaboration tools are attractive, and the 13th-generation Intel hardware will provide a slight performance bump. We still don’t have a firm starting price for the new Dragonfly G4, but if it’s anything like the G3 predecessor, it should demand a slightly lower price than the Folio G3.

We’ve written an article comparing the Dragonfly G4 and the Elite Dragonfly G3, which has more information on the differences and similarities between the two generations. The Elite Dragonfly G3 is still readily available from HP and should make a solid alternative if you can’t wait for the spring release of the new Dragonfly G4. And be sure to check out our board collection of the best HP laptops to see how they stack up.

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Source: HP

HP Dragonfly G4

HP’s Dragonfly G4 is mostly a performance upgrade over the G3 model. It comes with new, 13th-generation Intel Core CPUs, new power management features, and powerful new collaboration tools. It should be the right choice for those who aren’t interested in the Folio G3’s pull-forward design, and it should come out a bit cheaper due to its lack of convertible features. It’s expected to launch this spring.

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Source: HP

HP Dragonfly Folio G3

HP’s Dragonfly Folio G3 is perfect for those who want a unique convertible design, snappy performance, and outstanding displays. It provides a lot of versatility, especially if you love inking, and it has many security and collaboration features. You will likely pay more for this laptop, but it is avaialble now.

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