Customer Reviews: Dell Latitude ATG D630 14.1-Inch Notebook
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on August 22, 2009
I've had a Dell Latitude D630 for almost 2 years now and there's one key feature that needs to be pointed out first. It's solid. Although I've never dropped it, it has been through a lot. It's very difficult to warp the LCD screen by applying pressure to the back of the display, and the screen is recessed a fair bit from the outside edges. I've seen quite a few people crack their screens but you'd have to try pretty hard to break this one. At first glance it appears thin, plastic, and flimsy; but when you pick it up and hold it you can tell there is a strong network of metal bracings underneath the surface.

When I bought mine brand new from Dell, quite a few technical things went wrong. First the touchpad never worked well out of the box. It skips, freezes and stops working intermittently. I understand this is a big problem with Dell laptops. The other joystick style mouse works well, but after a year started occasionally drifting to the top right of my screen at slow speed so I had to disable it. I usually use an external mouse anyway. After having the laptop for about a year, a section of the motherboard fried and the computer kept giving me video driver errors, but after I called Dell they politely came to my home and swapped the defective part free of charge. I play my fair share of PC games and this thing gets hot. Sometimes the bottom of the laptop will become uncomfortable to set on your thighs so I'm not surprised the board burned out. It's important to note that this machine only gets hot when it's running a video game. It usually runs at normal temperatures doing everything else. I invested in a fan cooling pad which does a good job keeping it cool.

Other than the mouse and heat issues, it's a good machine. It's a nicely sized laptop as well. Personally I feel like it's not too big or too small.

UPDATE April 20, 2012:

Even though nobody is probably still buying these machines, I'd like to report on my D630 almost three years after my original review was written.

It has been almost five years with the D630 and it's still functioning, of course not as well. The cooling fan is not as strong as it used to be, and the machine gets pretty hot when running multiple programs or playing video (years of dust accumulation probably affects the heat sink's ability to transfer heat to some degree, no pun intended). Lucky for me I don't play video games any longer, as I now see them as a waste of time, so that will no doubt lessen the damaging impact to my hardware. Right now with only Firefox open the machine is a normal temperature. The wireless card periodically stops working and I must disable and re-enable it to get it to work again. Some of the keyboard keys have become very sensitive probably due to debris underneath, but all are still registering. The touchpad still occasionally acts up by sometimes not detecting my finger in a specific area toward the center of the pad causing my pointer to leap as I cross over it, but for some odd reason flicking it a few times gets it to work properly again, and other times it goes completely unresponsive until I restart the computer. The pointing stick stopped tracking slowly across my screen and has become fully functional, albeit awkward to use. The original battery has died and I'm currently on my second. Dell let me keep a brand new optical drive after they misdiagnosed a hardware issue (DVD drive failed to detect discs) that turned out to be another fried motherboard making it twice I've had the motherboard swapped under warranty, so my DVD drive still works flawlessly. Hopefully it won't happen again since the warranty expired almost two year ago; the original warranty being three years covering everything but the battery and LCD display. The screen is still very clear with no dead pixels.

Not much else to report besides the system's performance benefited from a OS reinstallation. A comment below mentions bluescreens, but I think bluescreens are more due to badly written software than the machine itself.
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on February 19, 2009
The Dell D630 is a remarkable machine. I work for a university that is replacing older model laptops with the D630. This laptop was given to me for testing purposes and I must say I enjoy the features and durability it has provided me.
The hardware is more than adequate for the needs of our students. The Core 2 Duo processor isn't top of the line but will run most operating systems flawlessly. I tested this one with Windows XP, Windows Vista and am presently running OpenSuSe 11.1. The machine I am using comes with 2 Gigs of ram but can be upgraded to 4 gig. The only time I notice any ram issues is when I am doing video intensive work while the 3D desktop in SuSe is turned on. The resolution only maxes out at 1440X900, but the clarity of the LCD screen more than compensates for that. The 4 USB ports are also a nice addition to the machine. There are other Dell Latitude's I've experienced that only provide two ports.
The durability of this machine is more than one would expect from a Dell product. With previous Dell laptops I easily pop keys off and have even cracked a screen by dropping only 10 inches. The D630 has given me a new found hope of the durability of Dell laptops. I have knocked it off the table without any issue. I have left it in my vehicle overnight (-10 degrees) and it was just fine. My children have used and abused this laptop. All it seems to require is a nice wipe down and it looks as nice as the day the machine was given to me.
The only things I would like to see improved on is a SD-card reader built in. Maybe a little better speaker set. I believe there is only one speaker built into this machine. There is no S-video port on this machine. With previous Dell's in my possession, there have always been S-video and I have become acclimated to having one on my machine. The D630 also appears to be a little heavier than what I am use to using. I don't mind lugging my laptop around but I other people I talk with say they would never carry anything that heavy with them for work. (mac)
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on July 12, 2012
I was happy to find this laptop for such a reasonable price. It arrived in a timely manner and considering it is a refurbished model, I am definately safisfied with the condition of this product. It was easy to get the software up and running...anyone could do it simply by following the prompts. For those who need a laptop for simple projects and internet use this is definately worth the value. I would recommend this product especially because it is sent directly from the manufacturer after refurbishing. Thanks Dell.
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on May 26, 2011
I bought this laptop directly from dell Financial Services auction on ebay. I did not even know that they have it here on Amazon Marketplace too. Even though the description said manufacturer refurbished the laptop I received looked like new. It came with power adapter and a Dell Windows XP Reinstallation CD and built in Intel PROSet Wireless Card. Absolutely no bloatware is included.

Now this may not be a top of the line machine but it is pretty adequate for home and school or even Small Home Office use. The neat part is that once you boot up the machine for the first time it would automatically install Windows XP after going through some preliminary steps. It even gives you option to enter setup and configure things but you are better off leaving the machine alone to do its thing and install windows XP or whichever operating system it is bundled with unless you're techie. Once windows finishes installation you can pretty much install anything you want. I have so far installed Open Office, MS Office 2003, Firefox, Chrome, Avast Anti Virus, Trusteer Rapport security Software and many other productivity softwares and the machine boots up and runs smoothly.

It does not come with webcam so I installed Logitech Quickcam Pro 9000 and Microsoft Lifecam Cinema and either camera runs smoothly even on HD modes. I use Lifecam Cinema more often because it's stand is perfect fit for D630 bezel as opposed to the Quickcam Pro 9000's stand which tend to wobble.

I will advise you buy this laptop directly from Dell either here on Amazon Marketplace or on ebay where it is listed under Dell_Financial_Services. You will likely receive a laptop that will be like new but more importantly you will get 30 days warranty.

This laptop is of right price, size and specs: 14" bright LCD, 2GB Ram, 80GB harddisk space and 2GHZ Intel Dual Core processor that is more than adequate for most home, school and or Small Home Office use. It is sturdy and sleek looking too.

There is one thing that Dell scrimped on here: the tiny single speaker that is barely audible! I use an external Frisby USB laptop Speakers. I also use headphone when I am on the road. It is worthy to note that this tiny speaker belies a powerful sound card that only becomes apparent when you put on a headphone.

NB: Don't forget to switch on the wireless radio or you will not be able to use the wifi connection. The switch is on same side and next to the headphone jack. It is switched off by default. Once you switch it on it will detect a bunch of wifi hot spots including yours, if any. Select your SSID from the displayed options and enter your router's WEP Key and you will be good to go. I have at&t 2WIRE Wireless Gateway and the WEP Key is the ten digit number directly below the serial number located on the side or bottom of the router depending on whether it is standing vertically or lying on it's side. The built in wireless card is powerful. I highly recommend this laptop to anyone who may be on budget but not willing to compromise on quality and performance.
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on March 17, 2012
Laptop functions are average but this is probably my favorite Dell laptop. I'm not a Dell fan but knew this D630 model has great up time. Most users have them for years without issues and need a work horse that is reliable.
1) Very easy to upgrade, up to the Intel T7800 processor, original was T7100.
2) The model I have has the Intel integrated video. There are other D630 that have the Nvidia option, not for me. Nvidia has serious GPU issues with heat, conventional cooling methods don't work and in a year or so, some sooner will fail. Having the Intel GM965 is much better for this machine.
3) RAM is a surprise, I put 4gigs of DDR2 and it worked. Now I am looking at the Intel Turbo Cache module which goes in to one of the two mini PCI-e slots inside, also easy to access.
4) The last thing is the display option is selectable to higher resolution; mine is 1280x800 but if you got the money go to 1440x900. Since the display is 14.1 inch the 1280x800 is optimal for me.

My hobby is to fix these laptops for family and friends; yes I took community college courses to help with the technical learning curve. Seen many bad laptop designs which are hard to work on. D630 is by far the easiest one to maintain and upgrade. Highly recommend this model for everyday use. The Intel Core 2 Duo is still a relevant processor today, as good as the i3 or AMD mobile dual core.
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on January 15, 2013
This particular laptop is a nice little workhorse. I've had several of these and they have all worked well. The current one I am using is just enough to play some games with low-end graphics as well (provided you have at least 4GB ram). If you need something for a college bound kid, this is a perfect workstation. The modular bays allow for an expansion battery for extended use, and the size of the laptop fits in nearly every backpack. It can run Windows7, even though it was designed for XP. I have Windows7, Office 2010 and a slew of other apps on mine currently and it's running just fine.
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on January 7, 2013
We needed some laptops that still have DB9 serial ports. I remembered these from college and ordered several of them. These little computers are incredible. Even for being over 5 years old, they hold up very well. The metal casing is very tough and the laptop is very portable for working in the field. These run Windows 7 without any issues at all. If you don't need tons of power, but need portability and some certain features (like serial ports), check these out while you can still purchase them.
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on December 28, 2012
Got this refurbished Dell to watch Netflix on. I had previously gotten the XBox 360 to do that, but discovered a monthly fee with Microsoft was required to get to Netflix on top of the fee for Netflix. This solved the problem and solved it very well. Laptop sits on my nightstand and I can watch what I want when I want. Excellent graphics, and in spite of being a Linux user, I am beginning to enjoy the Windows 7 pro that came on this one.
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on February 13, 2013
This computer was perfect in almost everyway. It does have xp professional but not word...i was however able to open my stored word files. Theres a built in microphone but not a camera so i had to guy buy one. It works great with my wireless router and I have full connection status in my whole house. It does get really hot though. I have to keep it on and end table in front of me or put a board under it when i hold in on my lap. It gets hotter than any laptop ive ever used but I havn't owned one before so I'm not sure how it compares. It gets too hot to touch your bare skin on ur lap.
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on June 5, 2013
I am completely pleased with this product in all respects. The slim profile and light weight make it a great computer for traveling. As configured running Windows 7, the computer is responsive with no undesirable lags in regular program loading and execution. Considering the CPU, I would expect that performance issues might be noticeable under heavy load situations such as gaming or extensive video processing, but that's not what I bought the computer for. The $200 price is well below many netbooks or a Chrome computer and you get a full fledged computer capable of running Windows' applications.
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